Need to get away from university party life in Canada

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Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Awarewolf » Thu Mar 28, 2013 2:01 am

I'll make this short as possible. Sorry if this is in the wrong thread. My life is drastically changing, I've always been a party type guy but since starting to meditate and get involved in Buddhism I've become more reserved, quiet, and trying to be peaceful. My friends are still the same, I'm not sure if they totally understand the simpler way I'm trying to live now but im not gonna openly mention it, like my housemates just rave and it always seems like theyre trying to impress each other. My second year of biology studies is about to end for summer. I'll have four months off and will be working full time, but I'm thinking of spending a month in Thailand at a monastery or somewhere quiet where I can visit a retreat setting often. I have considered in the very close past just putting school on hold to visit somewhere nice and receive personal meditation guidance from a pro, and I've also considered becoming a monk. Except I look terrible with a shaved head!

How could a 20 year old like myself happen to visit Thailand on my own for a month or so? Does anyone have any advice or suggestions? In my mind right now I honestly feel like visiting a monastery and doing walking meditation nonstop until I learn some truth haha.
Last edited by Awarewolf on Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:39 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Samma » Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:26 am

Check out buddhanet, you may find something to your satisfaction in Canada.
http://www.buddhanet.info/wbd/country.php?country_id=1

For example here is arrowriver forrest hermitage, Ajahn Punnadhammo was ordained in Thailand in the forest tradition of Ajahn Chah.
http://www.arrowriver.ca/visit/visitPage.html
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Modus.Ponens » Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:36 am

Awarewolf wrote:I'll make this short as possible. Sorry if this is in the wrong thread. My life is drastically changing, I've always been a party type guy but since starting to meditate and get involved in Buddhism I've become more reserved, quiet, and trying to be peaceful. My friends are still the same, I'm not sure if they totally understand the simpler way I'm trying to live now but im not gonna openly mention it, like my housemates just rave and it always seems like theyre trying to impress each other. My second year of biology studies is about to end for summer. I'll have four months off and will be working full time, but I'm thinking of spending a month in Thailand at a monastery or somewhere quiet where I can visit a retreat setting often. I have considered in the very close past just putting school on hold to visit somewhere nice and receive personal meditation guidance from a pro, and I've also considered becoming a monk. Except I look terrible with a shaved head!

How could a 20 year old like myself happen to visit Thailand on my own for a month or so? Does anyone have any advice or suggestions? In my mind right now I honestly feel like visiting a monastery and doing walking meditation nonstop until I learn some truth haha.


Regarding the partying: When I was a bit younger than you I used to smoke pot everyday with my friends. Eventualy I stopped smoking pot but I kept hanging out with my friends. If they weren't my real friends, they would have ostracized me. But they were indeed my true friends so I'm still in the same group. It's just that the relation is different.

If you're worried about your looks if you get ordained, then you're not yet fit for ordaining. Since that is the case finish college first. Then you have to pay your debts. And only after that you can ordain.
And the Blessed One addressed the bhikkhus, saying: "Behold now, bhikkhus, I exhort you: All compounded things are subject to vanish. Strive with earnestness!"
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:45 am

Awarewolf wrote:In my mind right now I honestly feel like visiting a monastery and doing walking meditation nonstop until I learn some truth haha.

Why go to Thailand? If its not too far you could hike to Birken Forest Monastery, or take a bus, then walk the last 20 Km or so.

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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Awarewolf » Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:09 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:
Awarewolf wrote:I'll make this short as possible. Sorry if this is in the wrong thread. My life is drastically changing, I've always been a party type guy but since starting to meditate and get involved in Buddhism I've become more reserved, quiet, and trying to be peaceful. My friends are still the same, I'm not sure if they totally understand the simpler way I'm trying to live now but im not gonna openly mention it, like my housemates just rave and it always seems like theyre trying to impress each other. My second year of biology studies is about to end for summer. I'll have four months off and will be working full time, but I'm thinking of spending a month in Thailand at a monastery or somewhere quiet where I can visit a retreat setting often. I have considered in the very close past just putting school on hold to visit somewhere nice and receive personal meditation guidance from a pro, and I've also considered becoming a monk. Except I look terrible with a shaved head!

How could a 20 year old like myself happen to visit Thailand on my own for a month or so? Does anyone have any advice or suggestions? In my mind right now I honestly feel like visiting a monastery and doing walking meditation nonstop until I learn some truth haha.


Regarding the partying: When I was a bit younger than you I used to smoke pot everyday with my friends. Eventualy I stopped smoking pot but I kept hanging out with my friends. If they weren't my real friends, they would have ostracized me. But they were indeed my true friends so I'm still in the same group. It's just that the relation is different.

If you're worried about your looks if you get ordained, then you're not yet fit for ordaining. Since that is the case finish college first. Then you have to pay your debts. And only after that you can ordain.


I have too just basically stopped with weed altogether, although I still drink as my social get togethers really call for it, that said I don't have a bad time. It's more about the personalities, I'm changing a lot and these buddies never seem to give up on the racist and disability type jokes, it's just really immature. Not to say I haven't laughed once or twice but I realize it's not the thing (out if anything in the world) to joke about. When I'm upstairs in our uni house they can get loud and arrogant quite often, while when I'm around they seem to be a bit more present and if I'm calm they will be. But it's not like these are people actively working towards inner happiness like I am, and I believe that's where a lot of this stems.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Awarewolf » Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:13 pm

Samma and Pesala, thanks for the links. I guess the recommendation is to stay close, no need to travel. I guess I've just been picturing a life changing solo adventure full of meditation and self-discovery in a foreign land
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby James the Giant » Fri Mar 29, 2013 5:34 am

Awarewolf wrote: I've just been picturing a life changing solo adventure full of meditation and self-discovery in a foreign land

Yes! Fun and interesting! Buy a lonely planet guidebook and a ticket and go! Airfares are cheap at the moment.
Then,
saturated with joy,
you will put an end to suffering and stress.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby manas » Sun Mar 31, 2013 2:16 am

Awarewolf wrote:Samma and Pesala, thanks for the links. I guess the recommendation is to stay close, no need to travel. I guess I've just been picturing a life changing solo adventure full of meditation and self-discovery in a foreign land


Get yourself the right training and guidance, and you can have life changing solo adventures full of self-discovery right where you are at home, sitting on your meditation cushion. (I'm being serious btw).

Having said that, it does take time to learn the ropes, and getting some hands-on guidance, either from a monastery or a retreat, might be good for you.

Regarding intoxicants, yeah stay away from them if you can. They give little satisfaction, but much stress. Not worth it.

I wish you well on your journey. Above all it's an inner journey we make, a transformative journey, but no less interesting for that, and no less of an adventure, ime.

peace :anjali:
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby iforgotmyname » Sun Mar 31, 2013 8:40 am

I had the same issue when I started University in the UK. I failed my first year because I was just having fun with new friends. But after that, I kind of got my act together and it was hard at first but I managed to do it - those friends probably disliked me a little when I no longer partook in their sort of life style. But then luckily the year after that I joined some saner friends and they were much much more understanding of my situation and I'm extremely grateful for them. I actually miss them right now :D Must go see them soon or invite them here.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Majjhima Patipada » Mon Apr 01, 2013 5:09 pm

Although I've never been the "party type" and have no history with any form of alcohol, drug, or what-have-you, I can attest to the importance of a sangha in maintaining a consistent and deepening practice, especially when surrounded by factors that can be alienating or potentially distracting, such as the "party life" atmosphere. A sangha provides a much needed sense of community by helping to surround oneself with others who share a commitment to meditative quietude and the conditions that support it. I attend two sanghas at the moment, one involving mostly middle-aged members and the other with college-aged members. My campus offers a meditation space and has an active sangha where I lead practice every weekday morning and on Monday afternoons. Interestingly, one day as we were sitting on our meditation cushions waiting for other members of the sangha to arrive, my meditation instructor, who has trained in Seon Buddhism (Korean Zen) asked me on account of the fact that it was Friday and I chose to attend meditation rather than go out, "Have you ever been to any parties?"

I replied, smiling and pointing down at my meditation cushion, "Only this party."
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby LG2V » Tue Apr 02, 2013 12:16 am

Awarewolf,

Bhante Yuttadhammo Bhikku is a Canadian monk who could be of much help to you. He has recently moved into a new monastery in Canada offers meditation courses as well as possible open positions for individuals to newly ordain and/or reside. He is a very good teacher and he has a website as well as a popular youtube channel. He discusses similar issues to the ones you have addressed.

http://my.sirimangalo.org/
http://www.youtube.com/user/yuttadhammo/videos

Best Wishes on your search/journey.

Metta,
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby taintless » Wed Apr 03, 2013 1:16 pm

TBH,

I do not feel that such a naive decision to become a monk would benefit anyone.

I would rather you stay in the so called "society" you currently live in and try to live skillfully. This will already provide numerable and enough opportunities to practice mindfulness and skill.

Peace.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Digity » Fri Apr 05, 2013 2:09 pm

Awarewolf wrote:I have too just basically stopped with weed altogether, although I still drink as my social get togethers really call for it, that said I don't have a bad time. It's more about the personalities, I'm changing a lot and these buddies never seem to give up on the racist and disability type jokes, it's just really immature. Not to say I haven't laughed once or twice but I realize it's not the thing (out if anything in the world) to joke about. When I'm upstairs in our uni house they can get loud and arrogant quite often, while when I'm around they seem to be a bit more present and if I'm calm they will be. But it's not like these are people actively working towards inner happiness like I am, and I believe that's where a lot of this stems.

What you're describing sounds very common. I remember acting similarly when I was younger...I'd make the stupid jokes, drink, etc, etc. Unfortunately, that's part of being a youth and people mature a different times. I wouldn't be too hard on these people and think you're better than them. Having said that, I think you're on the right path in life and it's good that you're realizing these things now. Keep moving forward!
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Sadge » Mon Apr 15, 2013 9:12 pm

Nowt wrong with wanting to become a monk and trying it out by staying in a monastery for a bit. Millions of young people go to Thailand each year. I went alone when I was 19, really scary at first but one of the best things I ever did. Buddhism countries are really friendly. Stay in a monastery or stay in a guesthouse dorm - instant mates! Do it :-)
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby mogg » Sun Apr 21, 2013 5:36 pm

taintless wrote:TBH,

I do not feel that such a naive decision to become a monk would benefit anyone.

I would rather you stay in the so called "society" you currently live in and try to live skillfully. This will already provide numerable and enough opportunities to practice mindfulness and skill.

Peace.

This is complete rubbish.

Awarewolf, the Buddha encouraged monasticism, so if you feel the call you should endeavour with due haste to a monastery. Its great that a young chap like yourself has already gained this much wisdom.

If you are serious about coming to Thailand, I recommend writing to Wat Pa Nanachat:
http://www.watpahnanachat.org/

I believe Ajahn Nyanadhammo is the current abbot (don't quote me though!) and he is a fantastic teacher.

Best of Luck
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Modus.Ponens » Sun Apr 21, 2013 7:14 pm

mogg wrote:
taintless wrote:TBH,

I do not feel that such a naive decision to become a monk would benefit anyone.

I would rather you stay in the so called "society" you currently live in and try to live skillfully. This will already provide numerable and enough opportunities to practice mindfulness and skill.

Peace.

This is complete rubbish.

Awarewolf, the Buddha encouraged monasticism, so if you feel the call you should endeavour with due haste to a monastery. Its great that a young chap like yourself has already gained this much wisdom.

If you are serious about coming to Thailand, I recommend writing to Wat Pa Nanachat:
http://www.watpahnanachat.org/

I believe Ajahn Nyanadhammo is the current abbot (don't quote me though!) and he is a fantastic teacher.

Best of Luck


Not so fast. There's a sutta where a chief disciple of the Buddha discourages a person who wants to become a monk. Monkhood is not fit for everyone. I'm not fit for monkhood for example. And if Awarewoolf wasn't joking when he said that the problem he sees with ordination is him looking terrible with a shaved head, he's not ready to be a monk. It's much wiser to finish the degree and then visit monasteries and then try to live in a monastery and only then choose to become an anagarika.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Coyote » Sun Apr 21, 2013 7:27 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:

Not so fast. There's a sutta where a chief disciple of the Buddha discourages a person who wants to become a monk. Monkhood is not fit for everyone. I'm not fit for monkhood for example. And if Awarewoolf wasn't joking when he said that the problem he sees with ordination is him looking terrible with a shaved head, he's not ready to be a monk. It's much wiser to finish the degree and then visit monasteries and then try to live in a monastery and only then choose to become an anagarika.


I agree and it is the approach I am taking - I am in the process of finishing a degree at the moment. Far better IMO to take it slow and make sure you are ready and know what you are getting into, than burnout within a couple of years due to incorrect expectations and preparation. Really glad the "local" monasteries have this process of guest - anagarika - novice - bhikkhu as it gives plenty of time and allows for deep consideration which I feel is necessary before making the final decision.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby mogg » Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:48 pm

Modus.Ponens wrote:
mogg wrote:
taintless wrote:TBH,

I do not feel that such a naive decision to become a monk would benefit anyone.

I would rather you stay in the so called "society" you currently live in and try to live skillfully. This will already provide numerable and enough opportunities to practice mindfulness and skill.

Peace.

This is complete rubbish.

Awarewolf, the Buddha encouraged monasticism, so if you feel the call you should endeavour with due haste to a monastery. Its great that a young chap like yourself has already gained this much wisdom.

If you are serious about coming to Thailand, I recommend writing to Wat Pa Nanachat:
http://www.watpahnanachat.org/

I believe Ajahn Nyanadhammo is the current abbot (don't quote me though!) and he is a fantastic teacher.

Best of Luck


Not so fast. There's a sutta where a chief disciple of the Buddha discourages a person who wants to become a monk. Monkhood is not fit for everyone. I'm not fit for monkhood for example. And if Awarewoolf wasn't joking when he said that the problem he sees with ordination is him looking terrible with a shaved head, he's not ready to be a monk. It's much wiser to finish the degree and then visit monasteries and then try to live in a monastery and only then choose to become an anagarika.

Citation? In a situation where someone has family responsibilities (e.g Ghatikara the potter) this is understandable, otherwise, you are talking nonsense as far as I'm concerned. Who are you to judge if someone is ready to ordain or not? Are you a Buddha? Have you and Coyote thought about the possibility that the poster could die before he finishes his degree? None of us know how long we have on this Earth which is why every senior Monastic I have come across has tried persuading me and everyone else to ordain ASAP. They frown on the notion that many people have that they will 'wait till they're retired to ordain', because like I already said, you could die tomorrow. The poster (or Coyote) could meet a girl and get married if he stays at uni. Anything could happen.
Let me remind you that Ajahn Brahm publicly states that all his uni years were a complete waste of time. There is no time to waste. Ajahn Amaro rocked up to Wat Pa Nanachat as a visitor passing through and ordained the following day.
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Re: Need to get away from university party life in Canada

Postby Coyote » Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:37 pm

I think we are just going to have to disagree

Easily robed is easily disrobed - Ajahn Chah


Nobody is talking about wasting time, or waiting a long time before ordination. Ordination doesn't automatically guarantee good practice on the path, so your comments about dying tomorrow are irrelevant. Everything I have read, about Buddhism and ordination suggests that jumping in blind is likely not going to go well. There is a reason why you cannot ordain before 20, and in many places not before several years of inquiry. Easily robed then easily disrobed is a burden on the monastic community.
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