Hello and help

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Hello and help

Postby Victoryoftheppl » Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:41 am

I've been agnostic for years and before that Baptist. As of recent, I've struggled with so many questions and fears in my life, I felt that Buddhism just seemed right to answer everything. My first thought was to learn about Buddha. I spent about 2 hours just learning his life and as I read, it became clearer that this religious path is for me.

I haven not taken refuge yet because this revelation came to just in the past two days. I just want to make sure whats my next step. I took a couple of more hours to look at the differences between traditions and also that it's best to travel to a center near me, but unfortunately I just don't have the money to go to one just yet. So, I reach out to see if I can find someone (or more) to confide in and help me as I take on this journey.

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Re: Hello and help

Postby lobster » Wed Jun 26, 2013 7:49 am

:namaste: Hi, keep studying, lots of questions and answers available. Be patient and kind to yourself. :smile:

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Re: Hello and help

Postby Nilasarasvati » Wed Jun 26, 2013 2:56 pm

Victory, don't feel like you have to figure it all out overnight! Or even in two years. Talk to people, go meet a teacher, go meet a sangha--don't worry about taking refuge Formally yet.

Taking refuge in your heart is more important anyway, and it sounds like that's what you are deeply contemplating.

If you want somebody to talk to, I'll volunteer! If you have any questions or anything just PM me.

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Re: Hello and help

Postby Dave The Seeker » Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:42 pm


You have found a great place to learn here.
I hope you find the peace that I've found in the Dharma.
As was said keep studying and absorb all you can.
Also ask questions here and read through some of the topics posted as there is a great amount of info here.

Save up some funds so you can visit a center near you I know you'll have a great experience there

Everyday problems teach us to have a realistic attitude.
They teach us that life is what life is; flawed.
Yet with tremendous potential for joy and fulfillment.
~Lama Surya Das~

If your path teaches you to act and exert yourself correctly and leads to spiritual realizations such as love, compassion and wisdom then obviously it's worthwhile.
~Lama Thubten Yeshe~

One whose mind is freed does not argue with anyone, he does not dispute with anyone. He makes use of the conventional terms of the world without clinging to them
~The Buddha~

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Re: Hello and help

Postby Grigoris » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:00 pm

Welcome Victory!

It took me about 9-10 years of practicng before I took refuge. I did it only when I was throughly convinced of my trust and confidence in the Three Gems.

Keep reading and researching. Look to the Sutta and Sutras for practices right now. I believe that basic practices like Anapanasati would be a good start and a firm basis for more involved practices later on.

Try to get yourself to a center to talk to a teacher. Tell us where you are at, and what tradition you feel most drawn towrds, and I am sure people will gladly point out something nearby. Receiving teachings via internet is becoming quite common nowadays too. Personally though, I like my teacher up close and in the flesh whenever possible.
"My religion is not deceiving myself."
Jetsun Milarepa 1052-1135 CE

"Butchers, prostitutes, those guilty of the five most heinous crimes, outcasts, the underprivileged: all are utterly the substance of existence and nothing other than total bliss."
The Supreme Source - The Kunjed Gyalpo
The Fundamental Tantra of Dzogchen Semde

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Re: Hello and help

Postby mandala » Wed Jun 26, 2013 4:14 pm

Hi and welcome,

Wow it's all pretty new -that's exciting! Until you can get to a centre, there are plenty of great books available (there's a thread on here somewhere about suggested books for newcomers to Buddhism..) and of course, plenty of folk here who love to chat..


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Re: Hello and help

Postby Victoryoftheppl » Thu Jun 27, 2013 12:18 am

I feel so welcome :] Thank you all so much! I started with "Buddhism for Beginners" by Ven. Thubten Chodron. That just erupted to a whole new set of questions. So, I'm taking to a journal and going to try working it out that way.

Thanks! I saw your post and that's what I decided to do was to keep studying.

Nila, Dave, and Greg:
These are things I'm hoping to do very soon! I stumbled on a network for Michigan Buddhist Temples, many which are in surrounding cities. So it's a Greyhound bus away, but I have to get funds in order first :]

As for where I'm at right now. Theravada is more conservative I'm reading and Mahayana (and the branches within this tradition) adds a bit more including deities, focusing more on mediation in some practices. I think that's the biggest thing I'm having a hard time with because I would rather stick to more traditional teachings that Buddha offered because I'm kind of put off by the thought of deities being "added" (please take no offense) and that just could be that I haven't learned more about it, so I can't really judge. At the same time, with Theravada, I don't believe in that distinction between the lay devotee and the Monk/Nun because I believe everyone should have the chance to aide others in the teachings of Buddha and I don't think I could put devotion in ordination to become a Nun. So, I'm still in the middle between that.

And yes, Greg I want to see a teacher by the end of this year. I just want to get myself ready for that moment :]

Thanks for the welcome :D I've found a bit of books to start reading, but I'll definitely use the forums as a source as well ^_^


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Re: Hello and help

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Jun 28, 2013 4:32 pm

Welcome to Dharma Wheel!


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Re: Hello and help

Postby lobster » Sat Jun 29, 2013 12:36 pm

Victoryoftheppl wrote:I feel so welcome :] Thank you all so much!

Good news. :woohoo:
Your most important studies will reveal themselves in retrospect as you look back on the blogs you have created . . . from your future self . . .
Much of Buddhism is self evident, practical and obvious. If something seems less than obvious or confusing. Move on. Plenty to find of value . . .


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Re: Hello and help

Postby Roland » Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:17 pm


mandala wrote:(there's a thread on here somewhere about suggested books for newcomers to Buddhism..)

Here is that thread.

I saw that thread almost immediately after reading this one, so I thought I might post it here for reference...
"Seek truth in meditation, not moldy books. Look in the sky to find the moon, not in the pond."
- Persian proverb

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