Hi everyone, from Canada!

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Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby LightSeed » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:31 pm

Ok, bear with me, this may be a long explanation. Thank you ahead of time for reading it!

I'm not really a Buddhist. I can explain why I'm here though:

I've lived my whole live in the province of Ontario, Canada. I grew up in a very Anglican family, parts of which have become United, Pentecostal, Presbyterian over the years. It never quite all added up to me, and like most teenagers do, when I reached that age, I lost faith in it.

Since then I've identified myself as an Agnostic, and as far as divinity goes, I still do.

I've led a troubled life, resorting to poor choices to cope with it through all of my teenage years, and well into my late 20s. After a number of crossroad moments in my life over the past few years, I resolved to "clean up my act", and believed I succeeded quite well.

I still felt adrift. I went through the motions of my job, spending the long commute home thinking about death, the afterlife, god(s), life, the universe.

Recently, maybe a month or so ago, I was wandering around a bookstore with my husband and wandered into the religion aisle. I spent an hour there, opening various books, looking for something that made sense. I ended up with two: "The Tao of Pooh" by Benjamin Hoff, and "When The Chocolate Runs Out" by Lama Yeshe. I completely expected Hoff's book to be the one I enjoyed the most. But, rather than simply enjoying it, I FELT Lama Yeshe's book. It made sense to me. There it was, on paper, THIS is what I believed, THIS was what I was looking for.

I went back for more books. Basic Teachings Of The Buddha, The Dhammapada, The Noble Eightfold Path, The Meditator's Workbook, Quiet Mind, The Quantum And The Lotus, and Bringing Home the Dharma. I downloaded all of Bhikku Bodhi's lectures from Buddhanet and listened to them on my commute, and I'm patiently waiting for the arrival of the accompanying book to his Pali course. I registered for a secular mindfulness meditation workshop.

I've devoured loads of information of various forms of Buddhism and I've come to a sort of puzzle. There are no buddhist temples in my little town and the closest ones are a bit of a drive, and seem to be very distinct lineages and forms. As an introvert, I'm not sure I'm ready to jump into something like that with both feet, so I've been searching for an online sangha, hoping to meet and chat with buddhists, learn, discover, and understand more.

Which brings me to you. :D So, HI!
"Monks, a statement endowed with five factors is well-spoken, not ill-spoken. It is blameless & unfaulted by knowledgeable people. Which five?

"It is spoken at the right time. It is spoken in truth. It is spoken affectionately. It is spoken beneficially. It is spoken with a mind of good-will."

— AN 5.198
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby retrofuturist » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:49 pm

Greetings LightSeed,

Thanks for the intro, and welcome to Dhamma Wheel.

:buddha2:

In terms of other forms and styles of Buddhism, check out also the Dharma Wheel forum (see link in my signature).

You'll find that quite a few Dhamma Wheel members are also geographically isolated from an appropriate/close physical Sangha.

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


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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby LightSeed » Sun Apr 15, 2012 10:52 pm

Thank you! I'll check that out!
"Monks, a statement endowed with five factors is well-spoken, not ill-spoken. It is blameless & unfaulted by knowledgeable people. Which five?

"It is spoken at the right time. It is spoken in truth. It is spoken affectionately. It is spoken beneficially. It is spoken with a mind of good-will."

— AN 5.198
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby Kim OHara » Sun Apr 15, 2012 11:06 pm

Welcome, LightSeed :hello:
You will find nearly every temple/meditation centre identifies with one school or another, just as every Christian church identifies itself as Anglican, Catholic, Penecostal, etc. The closest you will get to a 'non-sectarian' centre will probably be along the lines described here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_Kornfield. (That's leaving out the very wishy-washy new-agey groups which dilute the teachings to the point of uselessness.)
But don't worry too much about differences at this stage. Visit any centre you can get to and see whether the people are nice and their style of Buddhism appeals to you (some of us like exotic rituals and vestments, others don't!).

:namaste:
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby LightSeed » Sun Apr 15, 2012 11:55 pm

Thank you Kim! That's wonderful advice! I'm still working on remembering that buddhists are relatively open, versus say, wandering into a church I'm not familiar with. The closest thing to non-sectarian I've found up here so far is the Dharma Centre of Canada, which is near me. I realize it is not non-sectarian, but seems to offer many secular workshops. I'm hoping to save up enough money to attend one of their meditation retreats in the future.
"Monks, a statement endowed with five factors is well-spoken, not ill-spoken. It is blameless & unfaulted by knowledgeable people. Which five?

"It is spoken at the right time. It is spoken in truth. It is spoken affectionately. It is spoken beneficially. It is spoken with a mind of good-will."

— AN 5.198
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby David N. Snyder » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:26 am

:hello:

Welcome to Dhamma Wheel!

:buddha1:
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby Ben » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:13 am

Hi Lightspeed and welcome to Dhamma Wheel!
I hope that Dhamma Wheel provides you with some inspiration and noble companionship.
Don't forget to check out the resources in the "Discovering Theravada" sub-forum.
viewforum.php?f=24
kind regards,

Ben
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby rowboat » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:25 am

Hi LightSeed, welcome to Dhammawheel!

For retreats, visits, and such, in Ontario you have several options:

Arrow River Forest Hermitage - near Thunder Bay - http://arrowriver.ca/
Tisarana Forest Monastery - near Perth Ontario - http://www.tisarana.ca/
Sati Saraniya Hermitage - a bhikkuni hermitage in Perth Ontario - http://satisaraniya.ca/
SN Goenka vipassana retreats - http://www.torana.dhamma.org/
Rain soddens what is covered up,
It does not sodden what is open.
Therefore uncover what is covered
That the rain will not sodden it.
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Re: Hi everyone, from Canada!

Postby LightSeed » Mon Apr 16, 2012 1:57 pm

Thank you David, for the warm welcome! :)


Thanks Ben! I do find Theravada Buddhism the most fascinating so far, the one that speaks to me the most. I'm also not sure yet I agree with parts of it, it bears much more investigation. I'm working my way slowly through the information, and somewhere along the way I read a quote attributed to the Buddha that said something along the lines that one should not just blindly accept what he's teaching, but investigate it, and follow it when they find it to be true. So, investigate it I shall. "Discovering Theravada" sounds like the perfect place to start.


Thank you rowboat, I will look into each of those. I'm continuously amazed to discover buddhists where I had never noticed them before. I once lived a block from a zen buddhist temple in Toronto for 5 years and was completely blind to it.


Thank you all so much, this is so very helpful.... and welcoming!
"Monks, a statement endowed with five factors is well-spoken, not ill-spoken. It is blameless & unfaulted by knowledgeable people. Which five?

"It is spoken at the right time. It is spoken in truth. It is spoken affectionately. It is spoken beneficially. It is spoken with a mind of good-will."

— AN 5.198
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