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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 1:41 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 01, 2013 12:13 pm
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DIY Zafus...
http://boonvilleodz.wordpress.com/zafus/
http://www.michiganbuddhist.com/zafu/
:namaste:


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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Namgyal wrote:


Excellent articles. I would recommend against using kapok though. Usually kapok is blown in when they make cushions commercially. Stuffing by hand is tough to get the right consistency. Buckwheat or barley husks are very easy to work with on the other hand.

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 2:29 pm 
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On the subject of cushions, my tactic was simple.. I stopped using one, thereby starting the process of getting my body used to a flat surface to sit on, so that I may comfortably park my behind on any piece of ground I should happen to come across and feel inclined to install myself on.

:rolleye:

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 3:53 pm 
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randomseb wrote:
On the subject of cushions, my tactic was simple.. I stopped using one, thereby starting the process of getting my body used to a flat surface to sit on, so that I may comfortably park my behind on any piece of ground I should happen to come across and feel inclined to install myself on.

:rolleye:
Just for once (don't get excited, I won't let it happen agin :tongue: ) I'm going to have to agree with you on this point. Cushions are necessary though until the hips and knees get used to lying down flat. It is not so easy for westerners used to sitting on chairs all their lives.

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 4:03 pm 
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gregkavarnos wrote:
randomseb wrote:
On the subject of cushions, my tactic was simple.. I stopped using one, thereby starting the process of getting my body used to a flat surface to sit on, so that I may comfortably park my behind on any piece of ground I should happen to come across and feel inclined to install myself on.

:rolleye:
Just for once (don't get excited, I won't let it happen agin :tongue: ) I'm going to have to agree with you on this point. Cushions are necessary though until the hips and knees get used to lying down flat. It is not so easy for westerners used to sitting on chairs all their lives.


Agreed here too. Except when my back hurts, then I need a little support.
Something I often suggest is to sit on a large phone book and every day remove one page until you are able to sit on the floor.
If the phone book has 300 pages in it, it should take less than a year.
.
.
.

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 10:39 pm 
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It really is preferable to use a cushion or something under your butt to raise your hips above your knees, because it naturally straightens the spine. Even the Buddha made a cushion out of kusha grass, though I'm sure there's some symbolic significance with that particular stuffing. I think it's better to train your body to sit properly before you start trying to get creative or contort yourself when it's pretty easy to just sit on something.


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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 11:21 pm 
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yegyal wrote:
It really is preferable to use a cushion or something under your butt to raise your hips above your knees, because it naturally straightens the spine. Even the Buddha made a cushion out of kusha grass, though I'm sure there's some symbolic significance with that particular stuffing. I think it's better to train your body to sit properly before you start trying to get creative or contort yourself when it's pretty easy to just sit on something.


I agree. If you can't sit in the full lotus comfortably, you really should have the plane of the hips above the knees to sit for a long time. Not only is it hard on the back not to, there is a tendency to lean back which will make you spaced out and imprecise as you sit for longer periods.

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 2013 11:50 pm 
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Say your Zafu costs $100.00 - which is pretty pricey! - after many years of sitting on it, it works out extremely cheaply in cents-per-hour. The one I use I got, I think, in 1996 (when it was $45.00), I have since had to buttress it with another flat cushion underneath, but still that's almost 17 years, shows no sign of needing to be replaced.

But I do notice the number of ads for expensive looking gear in western Buddhist magazines - timers and clocks, statues and accoutrements. Buddhism appeals to financially savvy middle class Westerners who can afford those kinds of things.

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 Post subject: Re: Expenses
PostPosted: Fri May 17, 2013 12:10 am 
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Indrajala wrote:
It isn't enough to have incense. They need to be handmade by Tibetan refugees in India just because anything else wouldn't be legit enough and you feel connected to the Tibetan cause. It is like buying "organic" or "fair trade" coffee. It gives you the feeling of "doing your part".


I used to buy incense from my neighbors who happened to be Tibetan refugees and I did so because of the produced a good quality incense by hand. And it was very legit, made from Mipham's recipe with all the proper ingredients. The reason I bought from them had nothing to with any of the reasons you mentioned, but rather because 1) incense is actually considered medicine in the Tibetan tradition and as such needs to prepared according to certain standards, 2) for smoke offerings you need a long list of ingredients some of which are very difficult to track down by myself nor would I necessarily know what to do with them if I could find them, and 3) because I use these as offerings to the Three Jewels and I try to use the best quality materials for doing so that I can afford. Does that make me smug? It probably does sound that way to some. But you sound pretty cynical to me? But maybe that's just the frustration with India that I'm hearing.


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