Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Examples: Monday, today, last week, Mar 26, 3/26/04
Welcome home! Please contact if you have any difficulty logging in or using the site. New registrations must be manually approved which may take up to 48 hours. Can't log in? Try clearing your browser's cookies.

Impoverished Dharma

It is expensive to be spiritual. Yoga is a fashion, retreats are the new pampering holiday. Supporting the Neo-Sangha Buddhism is generously lucrative. Can we afford the time, books and me-meditation indulgences? O.o

Fortunately I am satisfied with impoverished or free web dharma, a blessing or empowerment from any passing sage ... o:)

At the moment I have free house for my personal retreat, whilst my sister and her boyfriend are island hopping in the Azores, which I think is somewhere near Atlantis ... ?

How is someone supposed to manage spirituality if they are mad, ill, poor, looking after themselves or relatives? Buddha?
“To support mother and father, to cherish wife and children, and to be engaged in peaceful occupation — this is the greatest blessing.” The Buddha

mmm ...



  • JeroenJeroen Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter Netherlands Veteran

    I think as long as you have a tablet or pc and some free time, you can do research, prepare your practice for the day. Or perhaps go see a teacher on the bicycle. The dharma doesn’t have to be expensive, there are many spiritual people on a low income.

    Being able to afford the time is a stumbling block, though. If one is working 2-3 jobs in order to keep one’s head above water then that is a problem. You end up working to keep mindful through the day as you do your chores. But generally the poor are more time-rich, and the middle-class are time-poor.

  • Well said @Dhammika

    Being independent of our situation is a great wealth. The Maitreya Buddha and Dzambhala the Wealth Buddha are free ...

  • FoibleFullFoibleFull Canada Veteran

    There ARE some dharma centers that run off of donations. If you do not have money, you can donate time or food for the monk(s). Not that they keep a list ... it is done on the honor system. It you take (teachings), then you give (as you are able).

    You can also practice Theravadan Buddhism on your own. I recommend "Mindfulness in Plain English" by Bhante Gunaratana. It is about as good as you can get to having a teacher without having one in your location.

    How to manage Practice if you are:

    • Mad? Very difficult, I would expect. But theoretically, if you set imprints of TRYING to do the dharma, then supposedly you would encounter it in your next life.
    • Ill? Also very difficult. I have bouts of atrial fibrillation and if I try to meditate during one of these bouts, ALL I can be mindful about is that thumpety-thump in my chest. But one can always work at mindfulness, to some poor extent, instead of meditating. Then there is my sister who has become disabled, and cannot travel to take teachings from her teacher ... until a Tibetan Rinpoche moved into her apartment building, and now she just wheels down the hallway for teachings. The teachings come to us AS we need them to. If they aren't coming, then we just need to work more with what we have already been taught until we are ready for the next "installment".
    • Poor? As I said, you don't need money to practice the dharma, and often you don't need money to learn how to do the practice. We are the ones who do our work, not the teachers. They just give us the techniques.
    • Looking after yourself? You can do mindfulness simultaneously while looking after yourself. Even in illness, self-pity becomes a marvelous kind teacher of where we get stuck in aversion/attachment. And generating compassion for our foibles is a useful practice .. and one that starts to become rather amusing after a while. After all, until enlightenment, we are all ignorant and I wear that hat very well.
    • Looking after others? Perfect time for both mindfulness and compassion practices. And if we notice ourselves wanting to get out of it, again great lessons in self-cherishing, attachment, and aversion.

    As the saying goes, wherever we are, that is the place to Practice.

Sign In or Register to comment.