EmptyCittas1by1 wrote:BlackBird wrote:You remind me of myself... Metta and good luck.
And yes, the Visuddhimagga is quite old and therefore out of date in certain areas. But keep in mind, there are still those monasteries which are conducive to concentration, and those that are not.
You missed the main thrust of my post, and so to make myself clear I will have to speak in no uncertain terms, I preface the following with an apology if it should hurt you.
You need to humble yourself. Going around telling others to keep things in mind at your age, having had no experience of staying in monastic environs and only a short time practicing Dhamma, you remind me of myself because I too was quite self assured and arrogant like that at that age. It is a problem which will lead you to no small amount of suffering if you do not make attempts to correct it. I know because it led me to a tonne of it.
You may think arrogant is the wrong word, and that it is not a justified criticism given the small amount of tells given by our short dialogue here, and perhaps you are right, perhaps not. The point should be made: The easiest way to do this, and to succeed at it, is not to come from a place of thinking you're knowledgable, but to come from a place of humility and meekness, if you storm in at 17 years old speaking as though a wise man who knows all about the Dhamma and what it's about, others will come to resent you, and this will not only make your stay quite unpleasant, but will make things difficult for them also.
Reading the Suttas and some ancilliary texts does not make you wise, you might think otherwise, as I did, and if you do you will fall hard at some point. Better to let yourself down gradually. You are already so sure of yourself and what the Buddhist path is, but over time you will see that things are not quite as black and white as they appear at your age. As the years go by you will become aware of everything I've said here: Things are always a shade of grey.
At that time too many people said to me, monks especially: 'Why don't you wait a few years, you are so young! Go out and live and get some worldly experience, it will do you good'. I felt hurt, I thought they didn't know what they were talking about - Such was my arrogance. Well meaning sure, I gave them that - But they didn't understand my mind, or my situation I felt. I was different than the average 17 year old I knew this, and they would grow to see it too. But life does not always play by the rules you set out for it. In the end they were right, and I was wrong. A bitter pill to swallow, but a pill that has nevertheless served me well.
And here I am going into my 24th year, only now do I think I am mature and ready for the monk hood, only now can I say that I really think I'll be able to make a go of it. I think for most 18 years is too young for a Westerner, even for me it was too young. A few years of life experience does the world of good for one's ability to be patient and stick things out for the long haul.
Maybe things truely are different for you, but I doubt it. As I said in my previous post, I doubt you'll take this on board if you are anything like me, and your response before more or less confirmed that, but we shall see. Sometimes seeds take a while to germinate.
I write this with love.