Why are alleged Buddhists so needy? They need a teacher, a guide, a reason to practice, a solution to all their life problems? Tsk, tsk. I would feel superior but my list of expectations, egoic needs and alleged Buddhism are shameful too ... ?
Do we need to grow up? Take responsibility for our dukkha? Hey it may be a plan ...
My teacher once said that desperate people make the best Buddhists. They are the ones who listen to the teacher, practice a lot and study the teachings, because they need immediate relief.
We all suffer from attitudes toward ourselves: we're needy, shameful, need to grow up, face our life and mind, instead of running or ignoring them. Sometimes it feels like we are being somewhat ego-less denigrating our selves when actually, just like bragging, referring to our self in any way only enhances our sense of it.
That is a lovely being in the picture. Buddhas often have a unisex look, but i feel this one is leaning toward the feminine.
I read the reference and felt like we have found a Buddhist Mother Theresa. Being pushed out of her religious sect in my opinion was a good thing for her. This is often seen in people who become great spiritualists. They outgrow the cocoon of a religious sect, having the courage and conviction to leave it (I know she was thrown out, but she probably knew her activities would lead to dismissal), and they emerge as beautiful butterflies that benefit the world. On the other hand, we should first know our Buddhist sect thoroughly before leaving it. I'm not advocating going out on our own, without a long and rigorous grounding in the Buddhism of our choice.
Thank you for the post lobster.
No doubt they make the best desperate Buddhists. Perhaps not the best teachers ...
The question is about needs sought in but not best fulfilled by dharma. For example:
As a Zen master once replied when asked about enlightenment, "As to that I'll have to think."
I think those who are desperate are sufficiently motivated to make progress in learning the dharma or in practicing it. But I’ve noticed myself that many people who come to Buddhist studies are older and have confronted death a few times, have started to notice the breakdown of the body.
Personally my own reasons for going into Buddhism are more that I wish to become more acquainted with my own inner self... awareness of the mind states and the processes of mind are what I am looking at right now, and I realise there is still much in Buddhism that can feed my progress. I move slowly in absorbing these things, it is one thing to be aware on the level of thought, it is another to have it sunk in into the heart and bones.
Also they've been around long enough to see how things fall through, including the big falling through.
There are curious young people who connect as well. I know of a lot of second generation Buddhists now. W e call them Dharma Brats and they have been raised in a Dharmic environment,. Some of them continue on in Buddhism.
I do not think that "needy" and "desperate" are epithets that apply to Buddhists.
People who indulge in existential questionings that lead them to try to put an end to their dukkha Angst are not necessarily needy nor desperate.
Neediness and desperation are not good starting-points for any serious search for trascendental answers.
A wholesome personality that has enough curiosity and a sane development of logical abilities is a better compass through Samsara.