Hello from Ohio!

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Hello from Ohio!

Post by Benjamin » Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:10 am

Greetings Everyone,

It has been a couple weeks since I have actively been reading this forum on a regular basis, but I have known of dhammawheel for almost two years. I'd like to take a (hopefully) quick moment to explain.

In my rather typical western upbringing, I grew up in an Evangelical Christian household that we can say took their religion seriously. Even though our church had a 'rock band' and not an organ, it still felt quite forced to me and unreasonable. I attribute this to the fact that my parents chose this religion, and then rather unknowing of the consequences, forced it on me and my sister. I do not intend to make it seem all bad, as it wasn't, but now that I am in college my parents have at least partially accepted my lack of faith in Christian theology.

This unsatisfactoriness (Dukkha, one might say) with the answers of Christianity led me on a bit of searching. My journey was a bit long, as I didn't find the beauty of the Dhamma right away. I actually began with an interest in Islam, for its theology was more reasonable and it still contained elements of my Christian faith. I learnt some arabic and studied the Qur'an for several months, but ultimately theological issues like everlasting hell got in the way over time. I was left, however, with some lovely knowledge of an area of the world quite misunderstood these days.

After studying Islam, I was introduced to Buddhism briefly and this is where my initial meeting with dhammawheel happened as well. I was very impressed with the wisdom here, but ultimately was too immature to fully grasp some of the teachings like anatta at the time. If only I had read some Thanissaro Bhikku back then, I might have saved my self some time!

Nevertheless, I went on to read some of the philosophical works of Shri Adi Shankaracharya and the Advaita Vedanta philosophy. This proved to be initially helpful, as its view of God was more in line with my own philosophy. You can see the trend from Christianity's anthropomorphic God, to Islam's "too great to be described" formless creator, to the more subtle Brahman of the Upanishads. Again, this was initially very beneficial, but Philosophy took importance over actual practice as it often does with the western mind, and I became stagnant.

Luckily however, I was able to rediscover Buddhism several months ago, This time without much confusion. As you now know, I am intent on focusing on walking the Eightfold Path, not just reading or philosophizing about it. All of the regular contributors at dhammawheel have helped me greatly in the past several months, and for that I thank you. I hope to see you around!

Kind regards,
"Don't believe everything you read."
-The Buddha

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by Ben » Fri Dec 28, 2012 10:19 am

Hi Benjamin and welcome to Dhamma wheel!
“No lists of things to be done. The day providential to itself. The hour. There is no later. This is later. All things of grace and beauty such that one holds them to one's heart have a common provenance in pain. Their birth in grief and ashes.”
- Cormac McCarthy, The Road

Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.
- Sutta Nipata 3.725

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by Khalil Bodhi » Fri Dec 28, 2012 3:14 pm

Welcome to Dhamma Wheel Benjamin!
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by DNS » Fri Dec 28, 2012 4:59 pm

Welcome to Dhamma Wheel!

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by cooran » Sun Dec 30, 2012 8:55 am

Welcome to DhammaWheel! :group:

with metta
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by bodom » Sun Dec 30, 2012 2:17 pm

Welcome Benjamin!

To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo

With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5

"Dont send the mind outside. Watch the mind right at the mind."

- Ajahn Dune Atulo

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by retrofuturist » Fri Jan 04, 2013 11:29 pm

Greetings Benjamin,

Welcome to Dhamma Wheel.


Retro. :)
"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"One discerns wrong view as wrong view, and right view as right view. This is one's right view." (MN 117)

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Re: Hello from Ohio!

Post by Hickersonia » Sat Jan 05, 2013 2:04 am

Welcome to Dhamma Wheel!

It is nice to meet another fellow Ohioan. :) May you find peace, friend!
http://hickersonia.wordpress.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

"Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of
throwing it at someone else; you are the one getting burned."

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