Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

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

Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby gavesako » Fri Sep 04, 2009 8:20 am

A Thai friend who is doing an MA in the Study of Religions would like know more about the views and attitudes of Western Buddhists. If you would like to help her, please answer the questions below (it could also be an interesting survey for Dhammawheel users in general).

----------------------
I am interested in Buddhism in the West.
I would like to know how Westerners practice Buddhism and their perspectives.
Thus, if you don't mind , could you please answers questions as follows;

1. Are you a Buddhist?

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby retrofuturist » Fri Sep 04, 2009 8:29 am

Greetings to you and your Thai friend, bhante!

1. Are you a Buddhist?

Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?

I see meditation as a means to an end.... so it would be more accurate to say I'm interested in meditation because of Buddhism!

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

Meritorious activities are a good support and basis for practice, but meditation and Dhamma study (preferably a combination of both) are required in order to attain stream-entry. "Social meritorious activities" existed before the Buddha, but these did not, in themselves, lead to enlightenment. Heavenly realms, yes... just not enlightenment.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?

Yes, and it is important though unfortunately as Western Buddhists, our opportunities to make regular offerings to the Sangha may be limited by our lack of proximity.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age

Paul, Australian, Male, Lay, Bachelor of Arts & Bachelor of Economics, Married, 31.

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)
User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
 
Posts: 14655
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Guy » Fri Sep 04, 2009 9:10 am

Hello Bhante Gavesako,

1. Are you a Buddhist?
Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
I was because of an initial interest in meditation that led me to appreciate everything else that Buddhism (primarily Theravada) has to offer.

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?
I see from my own practice that keeping the precepts and being kind is supportive to having a calm and peaceful mind which is supportive of meditation which leads to a deeper understanding of the nature of the mind. The more clearly I see how my mind works and what is conducive to happiness and what leads to stress the more I see the value of keeping the precepts and on and on it goes. Therefore meditation is just as important as all the other factors of my practice.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
Yes, I do believe that generosity is very beneficial and try to practice it every day. I try to be generous not only to monks and nuns, but also to other people and to other beings where and when I can.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Guy, Australian, male, lay, no certifications, single, 22

With Metta,

Guy
Four types of letting go:

1) Giving; expecting nothing back in return
2) Throwing things away
3) Contentment; wanting to be here, not wanting to be anywhere else
4) "Teflon Mind"; having a mind which doesn't accumulate things

- Ajahn Brahm
User avatar
Guy
 
Posts: 762
Joined: Fri May 22, 2009 4:05 am
Location: Perth, Western Australia

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Prasadachitta » Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:11 am


1. Are you a Buddhist?

Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Not at first

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

no
4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?

Yes I am confident that all Generosity is meritorious.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Gabriel Branbury, USA, Lay, Associates Degree, Married
"Beautifully taught is the Lord's Dhamma, immediately apparent, timeless, of the nature of a personal invitation, progressive, to be attained by the wise, each for himself." Anguttara Nikaya V.332
User avatar
Prasadachitta
 
Posts: 974
Joined: Sat Jan 10, 2009 6:52 am
Location: San Francisco (The Mission) Ca USA

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Cittasanto » Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:15 am

Hi Bhante,
1. Are you a Buddhist?
Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?half and half

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

I see meditation as the most meritorious as it is the foundation to which other activities are come from!
by this I mean if my practice is the support to doing good and not developing the inclination to do otherwise, it enables me to stay calm and react more appropriatly in high stress situations where there would be a posibility I may loose my temper, get upset, or other negative process arising

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
yes, and not really
the not really is more to do with location than anything! when an oportunity arises I am there, but that oportunity is not as often as my contact with members of the sangha is mainly online.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age[/quote]David (AKA Manapa), Manx, Male, Lay, Studying for a Diploma in CBT and Body therapy & Chiropody Dilomas, living with my partner, 29
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
User avatar
Cittasanto
 
Posts: 5742
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:31 pm
Location: Ellan Vannin

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby acinteyyo » Fri Sep 04, 2009 12:33 pm

1. Are you a Buddhist?

I don't know what a "Buddhist" is exactly. so I would rather say I'm a disciple of the teachings taught by the Buddha.
2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?

No, it is just a method to make the mind "fit for work" so that wisdom can arise. I'm interested in Buddhism because I try to end suffering.
If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

yes. because social meritorious activities don't lead to the end of suffering.
4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)? and how this activity is important to you?

no, less important
5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age

Florian, german, male, lay,(guess 'cause I'm german) O-Levels???, single, 24
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

:anjali:
User avatar
acinteyyo
 
Posts: 1001
Joined: Mon Jun 01, 2009 9:48 am
Location: Neuburg/Donau, Germany

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby siaophengyou » Fri Sep 04, 2009 12:38 pm

gavesako wrote:A Thai friend who is doing an MA in the Study of Religions would like know more about the views and attitudes of Western Buddhists. If you would like to help her, please answer the questions below (it could also be an interesting survey for Dhammawheel users in general).

----------------------
I am interested in Buddhism in the West.
I would like to know how Westerners practice Buddhism and their perspectives.
Thus, if you don't mind , could you please answers questions as follows;

1. Are you a Buddhist?
Not before i finished 5 months intensive meditation Retreat with Sayadaw U Panditabhivamsa in Myanmar
2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Meditation brings me to more understand and more respect towards Lord Buddha and His Teachings
If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?
Yes, as proclaimed by the Blessed One, it is the Only way, the surest way to be liberated from suffering
4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
Dana Parami alone wouldn't be enough to liberate one from suffering. It is important, to fulfill one of the Ten Parami
5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Hyronike Suyono, Indonesian, Male, Lay, Bsc. Comp. Eng., Single, 29
User avatar
siaophengyou
 
Posts: 9
Joined: Fri Jan 30, 2009 12:42 am

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Sep 04, 2009 1:11 pm

1. Are you a Buddhist?
Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Yes, but not just for the sake of meditation.
Meditation is included in the teachings and practice of Buddhism:
sila, dana, bhavana (morality, generosity, meditation)
panna, sila, samadhi (wisdom, morality, concentration)

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

All are important, see my answer above, but yes, meditation is the most, because with the practice and experience of meditation, one can see for oneself the value of sila, dana, and other meritorious actions.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
Yes, but I try to perform dana without the expectation of some reward. I do the dana because the monks have earned it and need it, and because I benefit from their teachings and from their pastoral duties to the community.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age[/quote]
David, U.S., male, lay 5 to 8 precept, B.A., M.A., Ph.D., married, 47.
User avatar
David N. Snyder
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8040
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:15 am
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby kc2dpt » Fri Sep 04, 2009 2:23 pm

These questions seem to be based on the stereotype of Eastern Buddhist practice being mostly donation and Western Buddhist practice being mostly meditation.
- Peter

Be heedful and you will accomplish your goal.
User avatar
kc2dpt
 
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 3:48 pm

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Sep 04, 2009 6:39 pm

Peter wrote:These questions seem to be based on the stereotype of Eastern Buddhist practice being mostly donation and Western Buddhist practice being mostly meditation.


Moderators note: Maybe, but let us keep this thread on target. If you wish to question the questions, start a new thread.
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
User avatar
tiltbillings
 
Posts: 19384
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 9:25 am

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Vardali » Fri Sep 04, 2009 7:20 pm

1. Are you a Buddhist?
I have not taken formal refuge, so I guess "no", but I nevertheless trying to follow the Buddhist teachings as I understand it.

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Meditation is part of Buddha's teaching, so I meditation is a means to an end, i.e. prepare my mind for insight, wisdom and understanding that can lead me along the path.

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

Both are elements of Buddhism to me, both are means of practice; each of them addresses different areas though: meditation addresses the mind (insight, wisdom, understanding, discernment), meritorious activities addresses the heart (generosity, loving-kindness).

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?

Dana to me is to practice generosity, i.e. for me, it is about the "doing" instead of the "outcome" that matters. Supporting monks to teach the dhamma and provide good examples for skillful living is based on "selfinterest", so to speak; I am no expecting it to translate merits across Samsara. If it does, it's a nice bonus rather than the reason behind the act.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Vardali, German, female, lay, PhD, single, 43
User avatar
Vardali
 
Posts: 150
Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 6:56 am

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Khalil Bodhi » Fri Sep 04, 2009 11:07 pm

1. Are you a Buddhist?
I consider myself a Buddhist. I observe the 5 precepts everyday and the Uposatha precepts on the poya days. I chant the refuges every morning before meditation.

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Meditation is certainly an important part of the Eightfold Path but I'm not now nor was I initially attracted to Buddhism because I had a fascination with meditation in general.

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?
No. I see meditation , silla and the cultivation of the paramis as the most important aspects of the path for a householder such as myself.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
Yes, I think it is immesely beneficial to support the Sangha and I do it whenever the opportunity presents itself.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age
Michael R./USA/Male/Lay/MA/Married/31
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

Uposatha Observance Club:http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148031379279&v=info
Kiva-Theravada Buddhists:http://www.kiva.org/team/theravada_buddhists
Dana on the Interwebs:
http://greatergood.com
http://freerice.com
User avatar
Khalil Bodhi
 
Posts: 1628
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2009 6:32 pm
Location: NYC

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby BlackBird » Sat Sep 05, 2009 1:12 am

gavesako wrote:A Thai friend who is doing an MA in the Study of Religions would like know more about the views and attitudes of Western Buddhists. If you would like to help her, please answer the questions below (it could also be an interesting survey for Dhammawheel users in general).

----------------------
I am interested in Buddhism in the West.
I would like to know how Westerners practice Buddhism and their perspectives.
Thus, if you don't mind , could you please answers questions as follows;

1. Are you a Buddhist?


Yep

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?


Yep

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?


I think it's of equal importance. The perfection of morality is one third of the path. If one does not have a good foundation in morality then one will find it hard to sit down and meditate to any great success. It's just like the metaphor of building a house, meditation needs a good solid foundation, and that foundation is to be found in morality.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?


Yes I believe it does generate merits across Samsara. But one has to look at the motivation behind it. If one gives because they feel they will enjoy the fruits of giving after death, then there's still an element of greed here. The activity is important to me in so far as I am trimming back my own greed, and bettering other's positions for it. I have no interest in being rich or attractive looking in future rebirths. In fact I'd rather I weren't reborn at all, so what use is merit to a man.

This idea of merit, is such a huge concept in Thailand - But to an extent it stops many Thai people seeing the Dhamma any deeper than the surface - There's a lot more on offer there. It's a tragedy that people feel they cannot realise the goal or make progress simply because of their relative status in the world. I am reminded of the story of Angulimala.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age


Jack S, New Zealander, Male, Lay-follower, University Entrance, Single, 18.
"For a disciple who has conviction in the Teacher's message & lives to penetrate it, what accords with the Dhamma is this:
'The Blessed One is the Teacher, I am a disciple. He is the one who knows, not I." - MN. 70 Kitagiri Sutta
User avatar
BlackBird
 
Posts: 1860
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:07 pm
Location: New Zealand

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby pink_trike » Sat Sep 05, 2009 4:19 am

1. Are you a Buddhist?

I no longer find it useful to identify by "ist"s or "ism"s. I find much of Siddhartha Gautama's teachings (and many of his commentator's teachings) to be gem-like in their clarity, and they've had a profound influence on my view of "reality".

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?

Not solely. I'm interested in the entire range of practices that are found within the container of so-called "Buddhism".

If you are a Buddhist

I'll answer this anyway...

3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

I think the practice of meditation is primary and equal to the primary practice of generating compassion. Awareness and Compassion.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?

I have no knowledge or experience of "next lives". I practice generosity whenever I recognize the opportunity, regardless of any being's social position, in this life now.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age[/quote]

Jeff
U.S.
Male (physical), Androgynous (mind/emotion)
Lay practitioner (emphasis on _practice_)
B.A. - Integrated Health Management Services
M.A. - Clinical Psychology
M.A. - Counseling Psychology
Single (in the eyes of the law)
Gay (surely as relevant/irrelevant as "male", "age", "location", "marital status", etc...)
56
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
User avatar
pink_trike
 
Posts: 1038
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:29 am

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Lazy_eye » Sat Sep 05, 2009 7:20 am

Hi Bhante,

1. Are you a Buddhist?

Close enough. :tongue: I plan to take refuge when the time is right.

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?

That's part of it. Buddhist ethics and the overall "philosophy" are another part.

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?

I think involvement in social issues is important, especially as global culture becomes more secular and present-oriented. In my opinion, "engaged" or "humanistic" Buddhism is on the right track -- not necessarily for everyone, but it's a good trend.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?

It depends. If you're Pol Pot and think you can escape hell by financing a new stupa, you're wrong. But generally speaking, supporting the monastic sangha is meritorious.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age[/quote]

Robert, USA, male, layperson, Ph.D, married, 43.

:namaste:
Last edited by Lazy_eye on Sat Sep 05, 2009 7:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Lazy_eye
 
Posts: 818
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2009 3:23 pm
Location: Laurel, MD

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Ngawang Drolma. » Sat Sep 05, 2009 7:24 am

gavesako wrote:A Thai friend who is doing an MA in the Study of Religions would like know more about the views and attitudes of Western Buddhists. If you would like to help her, please answer the questions below (it could also be an interesting survey for Dhammawheel users in general).

----------------------
I am interested in Buddhism in the West.
I would like to know how Westerners practice Buddhism and their perspectives.
Thus, if you don't mind , could you please answers questions as follows;

1. Are you a Buddhist?


Yes

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?


There are many reasons I'm interested in Buddhism, and meditation is certainly one of those reasons.

3. If you are a Buddhist, do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?


In my tradition, our practices are carried on throughout the day in all of our activities. Social meritorious activities are very important too. I'm not sure I can qualify one as being more significant than the other at this point. It's all important and part of the path. But I can say that the sadhanas (practices) that we do are hugely important.

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?


I believe that in addition to giving dana, a lot of wholesome karma can and will carry on to our next life. We can't know the inner workings and details of karma and vipaka such as when karmic fruit will ripen. I also believe that meritorious actions can serve as a way to purify negative karma, which can span across lifetimes.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age

Laura, from the United States, female, laity, BA in psychology, divorced, 37.

:anjali:
User avatar
Ngawang Drolma.
 
Posts: 805
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 7:38 pm

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Thaibebop » Sun Sep 06, 2009 12:24 am

gavesako wrote:A Thai friend who is doing an MA in the Study of Religions would like know more about the views and attitudes of Western Buddhists. If you would like to help her, please answer the questions below (it could also be an interesting survey for Dhammawheel users in general).

----------------------
I am interested in Buddhism in the West.
I would like to know how Westerners practice Buddhism and their perspectives.
Thus, if you don't mind , could you please answers questions as follows;

1. Are you a Buddhist?

Yes.

2. Are you interested in Buddhism because of the meditation?
Not completely, it was the over all philosophy that included the meditation.

If you are a Buddhist ;
3. Do you see ‘ meditation’ as most relevant to the Dhamma practice rather than other social meritorious activities? why?
Yes, and this is because of the mental state it creates that allows one to focus and see and think correctly, does that make sense? Mental discipline, ja!

4. Do you think to give material requisites to monks (Dana) can generate merits across Samsara (transferring to next lives)?
and how this activity is important to you?
Well, I think it is a good thing to do for yourself emotional but I don't know how much it helps. I read a passage in which the Buddha said that to think about all the death and other lives will distract you from the here and now and that is what you need to be dealing with.

5. Name (can be a fake name), nationality, sex, status (monastic / lay), education (such as BA etc.) , martial status , age

Shaun American Male Lay Working on a BA Married 31
User avatar
Thaibebop
 
Posts: 287
Joined: Wed Jun 24, 2009 8:37 pm

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby zavk » Sun Sep 06, 2009 6:11 am

Dear Bhante,

I will PM you my answers.
With metta,
zavk
User avatar
zavk
 
Posts: 1161
Joined: Tue Jan 20, 2009 12:04 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby Yeshe » Sun Sep 06, 2009 8:26 am

More answers may be gained more quickly through organisations with large numbers of Western Buddhists, such as FWBO, FPMT, NKT etc.

(There must be several Theravadan organisations with Western disciples as well. I know of one which is very much 'Westernised' IMHO - The Aukana Trust - http://www.aukana.org.uk. )

They may be willing to survey members and help in other ways. ;)
Yeshe
 
Posts: 22
Joined: Mon Mar 09, 2009 8:28 pm

Re: Attitudes of Western Buddhists: 5 Questions to Answer

Postby gavesako » Sun Sep 06, 2009 6:01 pm

Thank you to all who have answered here and by PM. This is not meant to be a very large statistical survey, so this much will probably do (but feel free to answer if you have not yet done so). :reading:
Bhikkhu Gavesako
Kiṃkusalagavesī anuttaraṃ santivarapadaṃ pariyesamāno... (MN 26)

ajahnchah.org - Teachings of Ajahn Chah in many languages
Dhammatube - Videos on Buddhist practice
Ancient Buddhist Texts - Translations and history of Pali texts
User avatar
gavesako
 
Posts: 1381
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2009 5:16 pm
Location: England

Next

Return to Theravāda for the modern world

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests