I have been studying Theravada and its relevance to westerners like me.
Although quite new to Buddhist principles, there have already been positive
changes apparent to me as they are understood and applied.
I hesitate to discuss any of this with friends or acquaintances. Their concept of
Buddhism seems to include notions of gongs, drums, chanting, prayer wheels,
bizarre ceremonies, superstitions, magic, demons, incense, statues, etc.
My present interest is in the core principles, without all of the cultural
exotica that has evolved along with it in Asia. Certainly meaningful to them,
but not to me at this point. I have little attraction to ritual, but that's just me I guess.
So the journey begins!