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genkaku Veteran


Northampton, Mass. U.S.A.
Last Active
Northampton, Mass. U.S.A.
  • Re: Turning 30

    @Mingle -- Take up Buddhism for a change. It may help you to stop believing in time, believing in age, believing in death and worrying about stepping in the dog shit we all step in from time to time.

    Or, alternatively, find a nice quiet corner, sit down, and enjoy being depressed about what can't be changed. :)

  • Re: Real-eyes-ing we are all ready the buddha

    If you "don't know," what good would it do you?
    If you "do know," what good would it do you?

    From this it can be known that what is good for you is suspect at best ... just like what is bad for you. :)

  • Re: Confused new member

    Welcome @jhutter33 -- hope you find something useful here.

    I suppose if you look long enough and far enough, you can find a statue of "Buddha" doing parkour. Of course that and $2 will get you a bus ride. Symbolism and tall tales have their uses but I hope you won't take them too seriously. Go ahead ... be the Buddha, be the snake, but most of all, just be yourself.

    Best wishes.

  • Re: Wanting to procreate from a Buddhist perspective

    If you think that suffering will be alleviated because you DO have children, think again.

    If you think that suffering will be alleviated because you DON'T have children, think again.

    Kids (full disclosure: I have three) are the closest thing I know to full-frontal meditation. Why? Assuming you like or even love them, the key ingredient is attention. And hooked onto that attention is a walloping blow to what was formerly known as "normal life," i.e. ego-tripping. None of this observation is meant either to encourage or discourage child-rearing. Leave Buddhism out of the equation. And while you're at it, cut back on any yummy-yummy observations. Kids are a blessing right up to the moment when they're a curse ... and vice-versa. In short, they're about like anything else.

    Like meditation, kids are a crap shoot -- you don't know what you're talking about until you've tried it. Or, as my sister (with two kids of her own) once said to me when I was worried about how inept I might be when the first one was going to be born: "Adam, you can either read every book that was ever written about child-rearing or you can read none at all: Either way, you won't know shit."

    If you insist on playing the "Buddhist" card, just imagine what would happen to dear old Buddhism if no one had any more babies ... a whole holiness industry down the drain. :) No one can tell anyone else what to do. It's an individual decision and the only person saying whether the move was right or wrong is you ... and don't be surprised if you waffle back and forth several times a day.

    Best wishes.

  • Re: Spiritual livelihood in the western world

    If I could, I would urge everyone to relax a little. "Spiritual" stuff isn't labeled and then offered in Aisle 3. Wanting to get things right (spiritually speaking) is only half the story. The other half is getting them sometimes horribly wrong.

    There was a time when I thought monastery life was the life for me. It was the old heroin-addict's mantram: If one's good, two's better: If meditating 40 hours a week in the city was good, just imagine how much better things would be if practice were 24/7 in serene surroundings with hundreds of Buddhist knick-knacks all around. I signed up for a six-month tryout at a monastery. I lasted a little more than two. I can't tell you how guilty I felt when I pulled up stakes and fled the scene.

    Looking back, I am pleased as punch I went and pleased as punch I left. I'm not monk material and -- wait for it -- that is worth knowing.

    Things can feel miles from the obvious targets of spiritual endeavor. And yet how, in any realistic sense, is that possible? Without you, Buddhism is just another tongue-wagging religion. Just what you need, right? Trying to outflank your own falsehoods, you don another falsehood. But that falsehood is a priceless bit of serious information and experience.

    Mind you, it may not be fun. It may be embarrassing as hell. But the advantage of making a mistake is that it is the one thing without which Buddhism is just bullshit: It's honest.

    OK. Things aren't perfect. But try to remember that if they were perfect they couldn't possibly be perfect. Take a break. Eat some ice cream. :)