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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:15 pm 
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Jikan wrote:
Follow up question for Socks:

Where are you in the world geographically, roughly speaking? There may be more options in your area than you might be led to believe by internet searches and the like. The forum may be able to lead you to another option.
I'm in Southwestern Virginia. Actually aside from the three options I mentioned previously, the Zendo, New Kadampa and Karma Kagyu in a neighboring town, I discovered a fourth group that meets across town in a yoga center. Their web site says they are inspired by the teachings of Thick Nhat Hanh. I'm not very familiar with him, except I read somewhere that he often tries to filter Buddhism through a lens that is sensitive to those coming from a Western Christian spiritual heritage. If that's the case, it would be a challenge to stomach group readings peppered with christianese lingo.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:21 pm 
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You're in a good spot: you have Asheville, NC just down the road in one direction, and Charlottesville in the other direction. It's entirely workable to find a teacher who is two or three hours away, and meet at regular intervals. And the countryside is pretty... we don't have that here in good ol' 22003.

Anyway, on reflexivity: B Ziporyn's book _Being and Ambiguity_ is a bit irreverent in its presentation of the material, but is still a nuanced, detailed, and provocative discussion of this very concept from the POV of East Asian Madhyamika. You may find it valuable.

All the best on your search.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:26 pm 
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Tibetan is popular with western men. Lots of kit to buy and it has that mystical aura about it plus HH the Dalai Lama is a thoroughly nice chap and Gyalwang Drukpa's a sweetie. I started out with DL up to,including but not beyond Kalachakra Initiation then thought... Why all this faffing about?. If you're not Tibetan heritage then you'll never truly experience what it is those born and brought up to it do nor will you ever truly fit in . Maybe in your own head you feel to fit in a bit but to those small leathery old ladies making the tea and really running the temple then you'll always be that alien presence.
Non ethnic Zen is predominantly white westerners you'll be amongst your own in most progressive groups and Western Pure Land is more or less exclusively 'us'.
Birds of a feather flock together and no one is ever as smart in a second language so beyond the exotic novelty of Tibetan etc tribal paths then for the likes of us Western Buddhism makes most sesne if you want to socialise with like minded devotees sharing the same first language and similar aspirations and interests to yourself.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:34 pm 
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Thanks for the advice, viniketa


You are very welcome, Socks. May your pursuit of a path benefit all sentient beings.

:namaste:

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If they can sever like and dislike, along with greed, anger, and delusion, regardless of their difference in nature, they will all accomplish the Buddha Path.. ~ Sutra of Complete Enlightenment


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:04 pm 
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Jikan wrote:
You're in a good spot: you have Asheville, NC just down the road in one direction, and Charlottesville in the other direction. It's entirely workable to find a teacher who is two or three hours away, and meet at regular intervals. And the countryside is pretty... we don't have that here in good ol' 22003.

Anyway, on reflexivity: B Ziporyn's book _Being and Ambiguity_ is a bit irreverent in its presentation of the material, but is still a nuanced, detailed, and provocative discussion of this very concept from the POV of East Asian Madhyamika. You may find it valuable.

All the best on your search.

As I mentioned about books in the Zen subforum, I'll have to get my college professor buddy to see if he can't get that one for me through inter-library loan too, Jikan.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:15 pm 
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Osho wrote:
If you're not Tibetan heritage then you'll never truly experience what it is those born and brought up to it do nor will you ever truly fit in .
Sounds like it would be another case of not fitting in, like the experience I had as a non-Greek trying to be Greek Orthodox for 1-1/2 years before finally ending my Christian career.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:18 pm 
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My Socks Smell wrote:
I'm in Southwestern Virginia.


https://www.ligmincha.org

http://www.tcbci.org/

And of course, because my master constantly gives webcasted retreats:

http://www.tsegyalgar.org

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:00 pm 
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If let say we study buddhism? How do we want the teachings to help us ?

Do we want to be a kinder person? Top debater or scholar in Buddhism, able to defeat all other doctrines?

Do more community work? Get along better with everyone?

Become enlightened in his lifetime?

People can be very learned, intellectual and can quote a gazillion scriptures but can we make the people around us happy :). Some despite all the learning can't even bring a smile to the person next to them.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:02 pm 
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Malcolm wrote:
My Socks Smell wrote:
I'm in Southwestern Virginia.


https://www.ligmincha.org

http://www.tcbci.org/

And of course, because my master constantly gives webcasted retreats:

http://www.tsegyalgar.org

Thanks for the links. Interesting to see the tsegyalgar site. I bought "The Crystal And The Way of Light" by Chögyal Namkhai Norbu on Amazon, thinking I could get myself some Dzogchen from a book, but as you know, reading is not same as having pointing out instructions from a master.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:12 pm 
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waimengwan wrote:
If let say we study buddhism? How do we want the teachings to help us ?

Do we want to be a kinder person? Top debater or scholar in Buddhism, able to defeat all other doctrines?

Do more community work? Get along better with everyone?

Become enlightened in his lifetime?

People can be very learned, intellectual and can quote a gazillion scriptures but can we make the people around us happy :). Some despite all the learning can't even bring a smile to the person next to them.

To be honest, my initial interest in Buddhism was not sparked by wanting to be more compassionate. I wanted to avoid experiencing any unpleasant "bardo" during the transition phase on my way out of this birth into whatever state might exist past the unknown void. The Tibetan teachers seem to address this concern in more depth than other forms of Buddhism. Maybe Zen is the best antidote for the poison of selfish escapism.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:52 pm 
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My socks,

Actually all your questions are answered by Shantideva.

It is impossible for this mind (consciousness) to see itself.

Just like your eyeball cannot see itself.

It was then argue what yogacara opponent, who said that mind is like the light. And the light illuminate itself.

This is rejected by Shantideva who said light doesn't illuminate itself, because light needs cause and condition.

The argument then goes on by yogacara who said that but it is the nature of light to illuminate.

This is counter over by Shantideva who said, in this case you shouldn't say that light illuminate itself, because light illuminate itself has a very different meaning with the nature of light is illuminating.

If you say light is illuminating by itself, it suggests illumination is independent of anything.
But if you say that the nature of light is illuminating, it doesn't suggest that illuminating doesn't need anything to illuminate.

The nature of light is of course illuminating, that is why it is called light.

Similarly, the nature of cognizance is of course cognize, that is why it is called cognizance.

However, it is indeed make nonsense to say that because of the mind, the mind has ability to see. Just like your eyeball cannot see itself, it is absurd to assert mind see itself.

But, it is indeed that nature of cognizant to just cognize, to just know, without an extra layer that control or see cognizance.

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I am not right nor wrong.
I do not exist neither non-exist.
I am not I nor non-I.
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To All Buddhas, I bow down for the teaching of emptiness. Thank You!


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:53 pm 
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waimengwan wrote:
If let say we study buddhism? How do we want the teachings to help us ?

Do we want to be a kinder person? Top debater or scholar in Buddhism, able to defeat all other doctrines?

Do more community work? Get along better with everyone?

Become enlightened in his lifetime?

People can be very learned, intellectual and can quote a gazillion scriptures but can we make the people around us happy :). Some despite all the learning can't even bring a smile to the person next to them.

..........................
Very wise words indeed.

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More about Mindfulness here
http://bemindful.co.uk/

" A Zen master's life is one continuous mistake."
(Dogen).


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