Sunday, February 03, 2008

More comments...

Karmabandhu writes, "How do you go forth while living the family life? Prasannavira was adamant here, stating that, “Times have changed [since the Buddha]. There is great individualism, which is maybe what we really have to go forth from. In some ways family can do that. Maybe Bhante [Sangharakshita] is missing a trick here.” He then talked about his Sufi shiatsu teacher, a man who has been practising in that tradition for 30 years, who advocates excelling in all areas. On reflection, Prasannavira thinks that his previous position was to some degree one of naïve idealism and is happy to stand on the ground he now occupies."

I think this is a problem too--how do you "go forth" in the family. I think there is a lot that could be said here. Maybe "going forth" is also a "going into" of experience in a way that shakes things up. Some people may find it easier to go into themselves by changing circumstances. You can move to India, but you are still yourself. The same problems and dynamics of your own psychology will follow you. Not that you might have transformative experiences there. My point is that the phrase "going forth" may disguise some of the features of it. I think it's more a "going into".

I remember a Padmavajra talk where he reports that Bante said, and I'm paraphrasing from memory, "maybe you should have a family to help grow up," So I don't think Bante is not blind to this, the transforming potential in parenting.

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