Simon E. wrote:The issue is less whether monastics can as individuals be good practitioners..of course they can.
It is more whether the monastic Sangha can as a group, as an institution, serve as a positive force for growing a western Dharma . I suspect that for a number of reasons it will be seen as an irrelevance at best and an obstacle at worst.
The precedent is the meeting of Dharma and Japanese culture where the ordained sangha always remained a small and self referencing group.
For western Buddhists to hitch their wagon to the monastic sangha is to doom Dharma to be a minority interest for those who have problems with life as lived by the many.
The result will be Buddhadharma being identified with an elitist group some of whom spin their neuroses as evidence of a special vocation.
Karma Tashi G. wrote:Much is made easier by purity of intention and foundational preparations, and having a lineage teacher. These three things are probably indispensable for all practicioners, householder or monastic. History tells us many householders achieved high realizations and many monks didn't! Stabilization of mind is necessary and householders can all achieve this. Vipasyanna is necessary and householders can all have this. Both come together actually as a package deal!
I have seen over time that it almost as if there is a karmic good luck factor in being born with good channels and ability to penetrate deeply into the practice. Not everyone runs like marathon runners and not everyone does well in sustained practice. Meditation gene? But if one has the affinities, then it helps out a lot! And purity of intention to rescue all beings and gentle yearning desire to meet Lord Buddha never hurts! Better be a householder like that than a 30-year monastic without it!
Simon E. wrote:A different set of requirements pertain to Dzogchen.
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