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Re: From Mahayana to Theravada

Posted: Wed Dec 30, 2020 2:48 pm
by Dharmasherab
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 12:26 am It is as if I am unable to make a choice as to what school of Buddhism is best for me. I take the gems of all.
Yes, sort of the same here. Its just that to be of benefit to others around us it is important to train so this means we have no choice but to pick one lineage, at least temporarily.
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 12:26 am Will you become a Vajrayana monastic at some point? I didn't know that you can live at Theravada monastery without being a Theravada Buddhist. Interesting.
Yes I hope to and this is the plan. I discussed about this with the abbot and he was happy to support me on this. Remember in the ancient days there were monasteries where Mahayana and Theravada Buddhists lived together. The lines were a lot more blurred back then in some monasteries. As for me personally, I cant predict how long I will stay despite hoping to be here for a long time. Some people who set the intention to stay forever end up leaving earlier than expected. So I dont want to speak too soon. However my intention to become an Anagarika was with the intention of going forth into becoming a Samanera (Getshul) and then hopefully become a Bhikkhu (Gelong) for at least 5 years in the Theravada tradition and then transition to Vajrayana monasticism (what I mean by this is to ordain under a Tibetan Buddhist school - I am open to Sakya, Kagyu and Nyingma). So far the abbot is supportive. When I get to asking to becoming a Bhikkhu (that is if I get there), then this will be discussed among the community. If they accept then I will take that opportunity focusing on the training in the Vinaya in addition to growing in Dhamma. If not then I will see what the next move is - either find a different Theravada monastery, if not I will consider a Chinese Mahayana monastery. If that doesnt work then what am I waiting for? I ll ask for ordination from one of my Lamas/Rinpoches in Tibetan Buddhism.
StrivingforMonkhood wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 12:26 am I think at times I am getting closer to renouncing the world, but still haven't explored enough. Where I live has limited Buddhist options. I am unmarried with no children...and I am getting older (in my early 40's)...there isn't much time...
When it comes to exploring the world there is no limit for this. People hundreds of years ago didnt have the depth and range of variety to explore so they had a lot less to let go of. I try to reflect on this from time to time when I feel like I am missing out on anything. A lot of these pleasures and experiences we have most likely experienced in our past lives many times over. The pleasures in our world are hardly anything compared to the Deva realms, and given the near infinite nature of our past in Samsara its highly likely we have been born in those realms and had all sorts of hedonistic pleasures. So I would positively encourage you to look beyond this feeling of missing out on anything you think is important in this life. If we accepted the TRUTH of the Dhamma that clinging to any kind of experience as a form of suffering, then anything that is contradictory to this has to be treated as a LIE. I remember reading the introduction of Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche's Heart of Compassion where it says to see that all pleasures of Samsara are like a pit of glowing ambers. If we touch them then we will get burnt by them. Likewise, all pleasures in Samsara their end result will be that we end up being disappointed and hurt. If we look closely there is nothing to give up. Because if we have faith in the Dhamma and take into our minds and hearts that pleasures in Samsara are like hot ambers, then we are the ones who are going to get burnt. We dont even want to get too close to a flame let alone rub it on our skin. When we see Samsaric pleasures like this then letting go just happens.

A big problem with Buddhists including myself is that there is always that feeling we are giving up something important. Actually there is nothing important worth attaching to in the conditioned world. Nothing in Samsara is worth our attachment.

I would encourage you to spend time in a monastery as a long term resident. Tune into the community and allow yourself become part of the family.

I didnt become an Anagarika all of a sudden. I first applied to stay for 3 months to stay as a lay supporter in this monastery with the intention of going back to lay life. But with the covid situation and the abbot asking us to stay for longer, I stayed for another 3 and half months where with time the more I wished to go forth and the less I wanted to return to lay life, the sooner I wanted to make that decision.

Out of almost all emotions one of the worst is the feeling of regret. I say if you spend 10 years as a lay person, still wishing to go forth, then you will end up regretting it even worse thinking that you would have made good progress had you made the decision to go forth earlier. Samsara is way too diverse yet it is uncertain yet this human life is way to precious to spend on anything else other than Dhamma/Dharma.

Re: From Mahayana to Theravada

Posted: Mon Jan 04, 2021 6:04 pm
by StrivingforMonkhood
Dharmasherab wrote: Wed Dec 30, 2020 2:48 pmA big problem with Buddhists including myself is that there is always that feeling we are giving up something important. Actually there is nothing important worth attaching to in the conditioned world. Nothing in Samsara is worth our attachment.

I would encourage you to spend time in a monastery as a long term resident. Tune into the community and allow yourself become part of the family.

I didnt become an Anagarika all of a sudden. I first applied to stay for 3 months to stay as a lay supporter in this monastery with the intention of going back to lay life. But with the covid situation and the abbot asking us to stay for longer, I stayed for another 3 and half months where with time the more I wished to go forth and the less I wanted to return to lay life, the sooner I wanted to make that decision.

Out of almost all emotions one of the worst is the feeling of regret. I say if you spend 10 years as a lay person, still wishing to go forth, then you will end up regretting it even worse thinking that you would have made good progress had you made the decision to go forth earlier. Samsara is way too diverse yet it is uncertain yet this human life is way to precious to spend on anything else other than Dhamma/Dharma.
Your words are most beautiful in that they speak great truth. No, nothing in samsara is worth our attachment; nothing is more precious than the Holy Dhamma.

What school of Vajrayana is dearest to your heart? Do you know of Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche in the Bon Tradition?

While I have love Vajrayana Buddhism, I do not like all the politics and in-fighting (Tibetan politics, that is). It bothers me greatly. I have seen Tibetan Buddhist disregard teachers with great disdain by virtue of simply being from another Vajrayana school. This disturbs me. All schools of Buddhism have rogue teachers and monks and some political in-fighting, but not the level that I see in Tibetan schools. But, after all, it is samsara, and that doesn't make the Vajrayana's beautiful teachings any less true.

I wish you great love and happiness in your journey.

:namaste: