Advice Needed

General forum on the teachings of all schools of Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism. Topics specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
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rmulcahy
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Advice Needed

Post by rmulcahy » Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:58 pm

My name is Rachel. I am 39 and living in the west of Ireland.

I am studying the Dharma online. I've been learning for about three years. My dream is to eventually become a Monastic. Right now, I am living with a two year old boy. It's just him and me. We live in a rural area with one Catholic Church. It's very beautiful. I long to be with other people studying Buddhism but there is nothing here.

Over the past ten years, I gave up many things to live more simply. I don't drink or smoke. I don't wear perfume or eat animal products. All I want is to study and practice the Dharma and to live with others who are similar. Eventually and perhaps one day, if I practice and study well, I would like to share the Dharma with others.

Since living simply, my body has detoxed from many chemicals like fabric softeners, detergents and air fresheners etc. They make me ill if I am around them. This never happened to me before, it's only since I started living more simply. The more I practice, the simpler I live, the more difficult it seems to live in general society.

I love people but I find perfumes, chemicals and detergents unpleasant and they often make me feel. I came to the West of Ireland to get away from chemicals and air pollution in the towns and cities. However, I feel quite isolated here. I do speak to people all the time here, I love people. But I feel I need a community to live in, a Buddhist community. I am responsible for a two year old boy and I would also like him to live in a Buddhist community.

I only speak English and am intersted in all communities in the world.

Perhap I'm looking for a Unicorn but it would be wonderful to live with people also practicing the Dharma.

All advice and suggestions gratefully accepted.

Good Wishes
Rachel,
Mayo, Ireland.

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javier.espinoza.t
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by javier.espinoza.t » Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:59 pm

There is no need to get ordained to practice Buddhadharma.

In my opinion you cannot be ordained because your son is not an adult man. Do your duties, complete them, and then you might want to renounce everything and be ordained. Buddhadharma is not for unrisponsible persons.

Practice as a lay woman, and do your best. There is a dharma according to each circumstance, to say renunciation, transformation, or self liberation; and you can travel to some buddhist center when you have good circumstances good enough.

If you are looking for a community, here is more or less one, you can ask questions, people in general is very nice and will answer.

And there are some centers around here.

Good luck!
what are you doing

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Empty Desire
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Empty Desire » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:54 pm

What type of Mahayana are you interested in?
No Beginning, No End, Just Mind......

Attachment's True Face is Aversion....

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rmulcahy
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by rmulcahy » Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:44 am

Empty Desire wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:54 pm
What type of Mahayana are you interested in?
I've been studying online with Sravasti Abbey in the U.S., reading many Thich Nhat Hanh books, Pema Chodrun and watching Ajahn Hanh videos.

These are all Mahayana right?

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rmulcahy
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by rmulcahy » Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:53 am

javier.espinoza.t wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 10:59 pm
There is no need to get ordained to practice Buddhadharma.

In my opinion you cannot be ordained because your son is not an adult man. Do your duties, complete them, and then you might want to renounce everything and be ordained. Buddhadharma is not for unrisponsible persons.

Practice as a lay woman, and do your best. There is a dharma according to each circumstance, to say renunciation, transformation, or self liberation; and you can travel to some buddhist center when you have good circumstances good enough.

If you are looking for a community, here is more or less one, you can ask questions, people in general is very nice and will answer.

And there are some centers around here.

Good luck!
Thank you very much for your reply. Sorry, perhaps I wasn't clear enough in my post. I'm looking for Buddhist Communities in the World were the Child I am responsible for and myself could live and practice the Dharma.

Right now we are very isolated. We need community. Studying online isn't enough. We are Human Beings and need similar thinking people to live with. I would like both of us to live and grow in a Buddhist Community.

If you know of any, please let me know, I'm interested in communities all over the world.

Good Wishes
Rachel

Crazywisdom
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Crazywisdom » Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:08 am

So you can’t be ordained with your child, AFAIK. But you and your child could take lay vows, the bodhisattva vow, and refuge and samaya in a group of yogis who practice vajrayana. There are such groups. But the tough part is you will have to travel around the world get a feel for people and places. Living with a group is a pretty big commitment. Honestly, there are really very many places now. But don’t limit yourself to the West. India and Nepal have some petty awesome things going on. And I have a feeling Indonesia will be home to a massive resurgence soon. Folks know enough English in these places.
I got my Chili Chilaya.

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kajibabu
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by kajibabu » Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:12 pm

Hi Rachel, It is wonderful that you came to the door of Dharma and what you are seeking that is genuine desire. I am Babu from Nepal, if you like to live in overseas, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved with communities who practice Buddha Dharma.... India, Nepal, Bhutan... even in UK and Ireland,, I guess there are some linked with some Dharma centres like Samye Ling in Scotland, Kamalashila in Germany and many others. You don't need to be ordained to practice Dharma. Householders can also be excellent practitioners, it all depend on our motivation e.g. Bodhichitta...
Babu, Nepal

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Empty Desire
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Empty Desire » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:15 pm

rmulcahy wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:44 am
Empty Desire wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:54 pm
What type of Mahayana are you interested in?
I've been studying online with Sravasti Abbey in the U.S., reading many Thich Nhat Hanh books, Pema Chodrun and watching Ajahn Hanh videos.

These are all Mahayana right?
Some of them are, don't know who Ajahn Hanh is though!!!!

I reckon there are two aspects to this

1) Understanding the Dharma in your own mind/life

2) Having a supportive community to help you

As you have an internet connection, infinite possibilities are dormant. Also you have a peaceful location.

You could then find a supportive Sangha this is entirely possible. You could visit a few times a year to help you and continue your practice. If the need for the second point is higher you could move in if they agree.

But I think the first point is the most important. In many years you might develop a great understanding that you can be independent of support, like an Island.

But if you just depend on point two only then supportive people come and go, they have their own timeline!!!

Good luck!!!
No Beginning, No End, Just Mind......

Attachment's True Face is Aversion....

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Mantrik
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Mantrik » Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 pm

Search this forum for words like 'abuse' and 'cult' as it will help you steer clear of potential harm.

Avoid the NKT (New Kadampa Tradition). They have residential centres but for all sorts of reasons I would never recommend anyone to even attend a class, nor are they even discussed on this forum.
http://www.khyung.com

Om Thathpurushaya Vidhmahe
Suvarna Pakshaya Dheemahe
Thanno Garuda Prachodayath

Micchāmi Dukkaḍaṃ (मिच्छामि दुक्कडम्)

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Josef
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Josef » Wed Aug 15, 2018 2:00 am

rmulcahy wrote:
Tue Aug 07, 2018 8:58 pm
My name is Rachel. I am 39 and living in the west of Ireland.

I am studying the Dharma online. I've been learning for about three years. My dream is to eventually become a Monastic. Right now, I am living with a two year old boy. It's just him and me. We live in a rural area with one Catholic Church. It's very beautiful. I long to be with other people studying Buddhism but there is nothing here.

Over the past ten years, I gave up many things to live more simply. I don't drink or smoke. I don't wear perfume or eat animal products. All I want is to study and practice the Dharma and to live with others who are similar. Eventually and perhaps one day, if I practice and study well, I would like to share the Dharma with others.

Since living simply, my body has detoxed from many chemicals like fabric softeners, detergents and air fresheners etc. They make me ill if I am around them. This never happened to me before, it's only since I started living more simply. The more I practice, the simpler I live, the more difficult it seems to live in general society.

I love people but I find perfumes, chemicals and detergents unpleasant and they often make me feel. I came to the West of Ireland to get away from chemicals and air pollution in the towns and cities. However, I feel quite isolated here. I do speak to people all the time here, I love people. But I feel I need a community to live in, a Buddhist community. I am responsible for a two year old boy and I would also like him to live in a Buddhist community.

I only speak English and am intersted in all communities in the world.

Perhap I'm looking for a Unicorn but it would be wonderful to live with people also practicing the Dharma.

All advice and suggestions gratefully accepted.

Good Wishes
Rachel,
Mayo, Ireland.
Hi Rachel,
My advice would be to take your time. Try to relax and develop your practice. Once you find a teacher that seriously interests you slowly start practicing with and committing to them. Cultivate bodhicitta and aspirations and the doors will open to you and the child to whom you are guardian.
Kye ma!
The river of continuity is marked by impermanence.
Ceaseless flowing of appearance.
Beautiful and repulsive.
The dance of life and death is a display of the vast expanse.
With gratitude the watcher and the watched pass through the barrier of duality.

Fortyeightvows
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Fortyeightvows » Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:45 am

Mantrik wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 pm
Avoid the NKT (New Kadampa Tradition). They have residential centres but for all sorts of reasons I would never recommend anyone to even attend a class,nor are they even discussed on this forum.
This post is against the tos.

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Mantrik
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Mantrik » Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:47 am

Fortyeightvows wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:45 am
Mantrik wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 12:14 pm
Avoid the NKT (New Kadampa Tradition). They have residential centres but for all sorts of reasons I would never recommend anyone to even attend a class,nor are they even discussed on this forum.
This post is against the tos.
Mentioning them for a very important reason when someone is maybe seeking residential and ordination experiences, is not problematic, especially as many people read these threads who may have the same interest as the OP.
The ToS were created, I recall, to avoid discussion of a certain Gyalpo after a decision by HHDL, because of flame wars such discussions created. The OP can Google to find out the info we do not discuss here. You are turning this into meta-discussion and should just report my post if you are concerned.
http://www.khyung.com

Om Thathpurushaya Vidhmahe
Suvarna Pakshaya Dheemahe
Thanno Garuda Prachodayath

Micchāmi Dukkaḍaṃ (मिच्छामि दुक्कडम्)

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Dan74
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Dan74 » Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:38 am

Hi Rachel :hi:

It's wonderful to find the Dharma, isn't it? There are teachers who make themselves available online, but most strongly recommend some physical world contact. I would urge you to write to teachers who you click with.

This issue of sensitivity to products is also something you could maybe ask a teacher about. I've heard of it before, and my sense of it (take with a huge grain of salt - I am not a teacher) is that it is due to an imbalance in practice. It's important in Buddhist practice that we don't indulge in aversion (knowingly or unknowingly) which is at the opposite pole to greed. So perhaps seeking to escape 'the polluted tainted samsaric world' we sometimes develop these aversions or sensitivities. I was always taught that it is important to keep the practice grounded and not let it just be a mental thing. Practice with your body, practice with your physical activities, get your hands dirty. The Buddhist way is the Middle Way - grounded in this moment, in its physicality, in the presence, neither chasing nor running away.

Don't know if any of this makes sense - all the more reason not to give up your search for a Community and the right teacher.


All the Best!!!


_/|\_

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kirtu
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by kirtu » Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:26 am

Hi Rachel -

In general there are not that many physical communal living Buddhist communities in the West. There may be some in the British Isles that I am not aware of. You could check with the Irish Buddhist Union.

In Europe there are nascent live-in Buddhist communities but these have generally begun in the last ten years or less. So there was an attempt to establish one through the Diamond Way Community in an abandoned town in Spain. There is also a Theravadin community in the Czech Republic. I don't know the status of either at the moment but you can research them.

Kirt
Kirt's Tibetan Translation Notes

"Even if you practice only for an hour a day with faith and inspiration, good qualities will steadily increase. Regular practice makes it easy to transform your mind. From seeing only relative truth, you will eventually reach a profound certainty in the meaning of absolute truth."
Kyabje Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche.

"Only you can make your mind beautiful."
HH Chetsang Rinpoche

Knotty Veneer
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Knotty Veneer » Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:57 am

Hi Rachel,
There are not many Buddhist communities for lay people in Ireland. Dzogchen Beara in West Cork used to have a community but I am not so sure now. And you may want to do some research on their leader though before you go further with them.
I think you would be better finding communities in the UK like Kagyu Samye Ling or the Findhorn intentional community in Scotland (this last is not Buddhist but more “New Age”).
If you cannot move from the West of Ireland, there are reputable non-residential groups relatively nearby in Clare https://www.sunyatacentre.org/ and Galway http://www.zenireland.com/galway.html. Linking up with a group of like-minded practitioners – even if you only seen them once a week/month – may help you out.
“If you are going to put people on pedestals, at least wear a big hat” - Jake Thackray.

Bundokji
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Re: Advice Needed

Post by Bundokji » Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:57 pm

Hello Rachel,

If you have never met Buddhists in real life, then thinking about becoming a monastic might be an extreme.

I know a lady (also online) who studied Buddhism by herself and fall in love with the teachings until she met Buddhists. I don't know the details of her story, but from what i know, she ended up quite disappointed.

Good luck anyway in whatever you choose to do.

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