Uhu wrote:Hi, Indrajala. I'm a new member in this forum, but an old visitor/follower. Your report is very interesting! Where did you ordain? I mean: vehicle, tradition, country, monastery. One member at DhammaWheel.Com mentioned that seems that you have ordained somewhat independently. Is that true? Is that possible? Thanks a lot! All the best! _/\_
No, I didn't ordain independently. I went through the motions of an ordination ceremony here in India with senior monks and was given the robes, precepts and so on. I don't really identify with the ceremony and all the details (vehicle, tradition, country, monastery). It was just a formality that orthodox Buddhist traditions demand. I'm not one for following the crowd.
I am however very independent (and find it inherently difficult to conform to any institution) and as time goes on less interested in what the Vinaya has to say about how I should live my life after reading and researching all about how it developed historically, to say nothing of the utter nonsense you find in some of it (for example, like how to properly draw up loan contracts with laypeople which is actually attributed to the Buddha who lived in a time with no writing!).
I prefer to be a Baba-ji rather than Bhante to be honest. To a certain extent perhaps the influence of India has made me feel uncomfortable with the kind of monasticism you find in Tibetan Buddhism or Theravada where the chiefs get to tell the underlings whether they're allowed to wear underwear or not. I want no part of that. If someone ever told me I can't wear underwear I would tell them to #### off.
I'm fortunately in a position though where I can be independent. I just do whatever I want really. Now that isn't to say I'm having sex, drinking alcohol and doing all kinds of questionable things (I'm not). I just prefer to be a śramaṇa (mendicant, not novice) on my own terms
, which in my mind is more in line with the original spirit of the Buddha's time. There are common features found in ancient śramaṇa traditions: celibacy, non-violence, simplicity, mendicancy, etc. A lot of what you find beyond that is clearly aimed at self-preservation and propagation of institutions (like the strong obsession in the Vinaya with keeping a sparkling clean image for the the paying laypeople).
If all this makes me a heretic, then I'll happily walk away from Buddhism and simply follow Buddhadharma.