CrawfordHollow wrote:Hi all,
I have been involved in a large number of activities over the years, such as rock and ice climbing, skiing, and playing music. I started playing music at an especially young age, and at one point I would have called it my life's calling. As my commitment to Dharma practice grew, my interest in these hobbies waned, and I virtually stopped playing music altogether. I realize that these are all samsaric activities, and therefore cannot bring me lasting happiness. However, I feel like they did enrich my life in a positive way, and I would like to start becoming more involved in my old hobbies. So my question is: are hobbies a distraction and an opposition to Dharma practice? I think the problem arises when we start to identify ourselves with what we do, such as labeling ourselves "musician" or "rock climber." But I also feel that in a way I just traded labels, rather than being Troy the musician, I became Troy the Buddhist. I guess if my practice was more mature, I would be able to integrate these activites into my life without becoming attached to them.
I would like to hear what some of you guys do for fun outside of Dharma practice (not that we practice for fun). Do you feel like your hobbies are in conflict with your practice? Skiing season is coming up, and assuming that winter still exists, I would like to tear it up this year. Should I feel guilty for being completely psyched for a powder day instead of being psyched to do prostrations? I would also like to start playing music again. Now, I realize that playing music and skiing won't really be of much benefit to sentient beings, and there are some people out there who would say I should give them up and just focus on practicing as much as possible. How can I integrate my practice into things I do for fun? I'm not going through the easiest time in my life right now, and there are certaintly things that I should be focusing on besides skiing and climbing. Please give me your thoughts on this. Thanks guys.
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