Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Theravāda in the 21st century - modern applications of ancient wisdom

Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Anagarika » Fri Dec 30, 2011 8:10 pm

I confess to being a card carrying Theravadin.

I have spent time in Thailand, and ordained as a samanera, via a temporary ordination. I practice meditation as I've been taught by my Thai based teachers. I read the translations of the Pali Canon, from time to time (Thank you Thanissaro Bhikku and Bhikkhu Bodhi). I've been fortunate to study with and learn from a few excellent Thai and Western Bhikkhus in Thailand and here in the US. I read Dhamma Wheel almost each day, and each day reminded how privileged I am to be in the company of such learned folks on this site, from whom I have learned a lot.

I am, however, troubled these days by the lack of actual sangha in my region, other than the "internet Sangha," some Goenka groups, and the local Thai Wat. The Wat is a wonderful place, but is there to serve the Thai speaking community in my area. I love the Forest Tradition ( to me it is the heart of Buddhist tradition), but admit to being someone that also enjoys (and needs) the company of others and the activity of being in the community practicing, along with meditating, Metta.

So, while in disguise :spy: , I am going to attend a Zen Sangha in my area. The members in this Sangha number in the hundreds. The Abbot is a learned fellow, teaches at a local university, and brings in other speakers to the Zendo from various Buddhist traditions. I am looking forward, in 2012, to getting away from my solitary meditation, and getting in the community and doing some engaged work. In other words, I wish to be surrounded by like minded peopleand to benefit from this community and interaction.

I will be a Theravadin, in the midst of a Mahayana camp. I hope I am not asked for my card. :)
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby cooran » Fri Dec 30, 2011 8:21 pm

Hello Buddhasoup,

Have you used the Buddhanet Directory to find close by Theravada groups? You might make contacts via this and connect with other Theravada practitioners.
http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/country.php?country_id=2

with metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Anagarika » Sat Dec 31, 2011 5:59 pm

cooran wrote:Hello Buddhasoup,

Have you used the Buddhanet Directory to find close by Theravada groups? You might make contacts via this and connect with other Theravada practitioners.
http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/country.php?country_id=2

with metta
Chris


Chris, thank you. Having this list is helpful.

I wish you a peaceful and happy New Year.

Mike
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Justsit » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:47 pm

BuddhaSoup wrote:I will be a Theravadin, in the midst of a Mahayana camp. I hope I am not asked for my card. :)


We don't bite. :smile:
Or check cards.

Come on in, have some tea.
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby James the Giant » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:50 pm

BuddhaSoup wrote:So, while in disguise :spy: , I am going to attend a Zen Sangha in my area.

Are you going to keep it a secret? That will generate feelings of naughtiness and deception I think.
I used to sit and hang out with a Zen crowd while doing vipassana, as there are no Theravadans in my area either. The Zen folk didn't mind, they were friendly, and I even got to be the cook at their yearly retreat.
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.
SN 9.11
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Dec 31, 2011 6:54 pm

BuddhaSoup wrote:I confess to being a card carrying Theravadin.. . . So, while in disguise :spy: , I am going to attend a Zen Sangha in my area. The members in this Sangha number in the hundreds. The Abbot is a learned fellow, teaches at a local university, and brings in other speakers to the Zendo from various Buddhist traditions. I am looking forward, in 2012, to getting away from my solitary meditation, and getting in the community and doing some engaged work. In other words, I wish to be surrounded by like minded peopleand to benefit from this community and interaction.

I will be a Theravadin, in the midst of a Mahayana camp. I hope I am not asked for my card. :)
Sound interesting and it may be a very good thing. I lived for three years in a Rochester Zen Center affiliated house. There was no problem with my being Theravada, and I rather liked the Zen aesthetic around the practice. Talk to the abbot; that would be a good thing. And let us know how it goes.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Buckwheat » Sat Dec 31, 2011 11:20 pm

I attend a few sanghas. Not only are Mahayanans (usually) very accomodating to Theravadans, but I even ran into a.... ehem..... (whispering)... Christian. If they didn't mind that, I think you're pretty safe. I wouldn't hide your roots... be open.
Sotthī hontu nirantaraṃ - May you forever be well.
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Monkey Mind » Sun Jan 01, 2012 6:45 pm

I attend a monthly discussion group at a Zendo. They have always been very welcoming, and some interesting discussions about similarities and differences between traditions have come up from time to time. I was curious and surprised to see, the last time I went on a Goenka retreat, that one of the Zen monks from this Zendo attended the course. He is still in robes following his experience, so apparently there is no rule against exploring the teachings of other traditions.
"As I am, so are others;
as others are, so am I."
Having thus identified self and others,
harm no one nor have them harmed.

Sutta Nipāta 3.710
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Anagarika » Thu Jan 19, 2012 4:29 am

Sound interesting and it may be a very good thing. I lived for three years in a Rochester Zen Center affiliated house. There was no problem with my being Theravada, and I rather liked the Zen aesthetic around the practice. Talk to the abbot; that would be a good thing. And let us know how it goes.


Thanks for your comment and yes, I can report that the first meetings were really excellent. I'm fortunate that in my city is such a Zendo with the guiding teacher being a published author, Dogen and Soto Zen scholar, university professor, and Dharma teacher in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki. The Abbot is very engaging, and very patient with questions, and he really has some thoughtful insights about Dharma and society, culture, and behavior.

I enjoyed the sitting mediation. I enjoyed the Dharma talk and the discussion that followed. I enjoyed and appreciated meeting the members of the Sangha who were to a person thoughtful, intelligent, friendly and serious people.

Can someone be grounded in both Theravada and Zen? Is it possible to be faithful to the original Suttas and Vinaya and yet, explore the beauty and profundity of Dogen and his poetic writing?

Can one's gate really swing both ways? :thinking:

So, I am going back. And back again. This Zendo is that good, and inspiring. However, if I start waxing on about flower arranging, someone stop me.....
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby retrofuturist » Thu Jan 19, 2012 4:58 am

Greetings Buddhasoup,

BuddhaSoup wrote:Can someone be grounded in both Theravada and Zen? Is it possible to be faithful to the original Suttas and Vinaya and yet, explore the beauty and profundity of Dogen and his poetic writing?

Can one's gate really swing both ways? :thinking:

Of the other forms of Buddhism out there, Zen (or perhaps some kind of Madhyamaka tradition not overtly steeped in Tibetan culture) would seem to be the most complementary for a card-carrying Theravadin.

Their different beliefs needn't come between the fact you're all spiritual pracitioners, looking to come to the end of dukkha, through a path of self-discipline, wisdom and mental cultivation.

Metta,
Retro. :)
If you have asked me of the origination of unease, then I shall explain it to you in accordance with my understanding:
Whatever various forms of unease there are in the world, They originate founded in encumbering accumulation. (Pārāyanavagga)


Exalted in mind, just open and clearly aware, the recluse trained in the ways of the sages:
One who is such, calmed and ever mindful, He has no sorrows! -- Udana IV, 7


Dharma Wheel (Mahayana / Vajrayana forum) -- Open flower ~ Open book (blog)
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby Kim OHara » Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:33 am

retrofuturist wrote:Greetings Buddhasoup,

BuddhaSoup wrote:Can someone be grounded in both Theravada and Zen? Is it possible to be faithful to the original Suttas and Vinaya and yet, explore the beauty and profundity of Dogen and his poetic writing?

Can one's gate really swing both ways? :thinking:

Of the other forms of Buddhism out there, Zen (or perhaps some kind of Madhyamaka tradition not overtly steeped in Tibetan culture) would seem to be the most complementary for a card-carrying Theravadin.

Their different beliefs needn't come between the fact you're all spiritual pracitioners, looking to come to the end of dukkha, through a path of self-discipline, wisdom and mental cultivation.

Metta,
Retro. :)

:goodpost: to which I will just that all the Mahayana traditions are founded upon the teachings of the Pali Canon, so it's not so much a matter of swinging the gate both ways as of splitting your time between two different rooms of one rambling house.
See, for instance, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Buddhist_Sangha_Council#Basic_Points_Unifying_the_Theravada_and_Mahayana

:namaste:
Kim
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Re: Hoping that they don't ask for my card...

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Jan 19, 2012 6:48 am

BuddhaSoup wrote:Thanks for your comment and yes, I can report that the first meetings were really excellent. I'm fortunate that in my city is such a Zendo with the guiding teacher being a published author, Dogen and Soto Zen scholar, university professor, and Dharma teacher in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki. The Abbot is very engaging, and very patient with questions, and he really has some thoughtful insights about Dharma and society, culture, and behavior.
By process of putting clues together as to of whom you are speaking, I would say, by reputation, he would be a good teacher and I am thinking will be supportive and open to your practice.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson
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