This weekend I was fortunate enough to have helped bring Bhante Saddhasara to Manhattan for the second time and to be involved in making plans for him to return on a more regular basis. In doing so I have met wonderful people from different backgrounds and with their own personal, spiritual narratives that both she’d light on my own and brought me to reexamine just what it is I am doing.
My recent rejection from training under a Seon master who I will not name was difficult at first for me but, with time and reflection, I am beginning to wit as a blessing. I always knew that the training, if I were accepted, would have to be taken with a grain of salt and I would necessity leave to the side those things that didn’t accord work my own (Theravadin) understandings. But after talking at length to a new Dhamma friend about her heart-rending experience with a lay teacher and hope it almost destroyed her faith completely, I see now just how dangerous it can be to associate oneself with a tradition that does not clearly define and emphasize morality at every point.
This is not to say that one cannot progress in another school or that there aren’t problems with monks and mums in the various Theravadin nikayas, just that the chances seen to be stack more in your favor with a solid adherence to the Vinaya.
Delusion is, almost by definition, something we cannot see in our daily life and it can sneak in to pull the rug out from under us at almost any time. By attempting to follow the Doctrine and Discipline of the Lord Buddha as best as I can understand it I hope to give delusion as few footholds as possible. May the sasana last for another 2500 years and may we all work hard for our liberation!