Posted in Buddhist Culture, Dharma Talks, On the Path, Sangha Relationships

Sangha Write & Speak with Certainty

If Sangha write or speak like they don’t have a perspective then how are they to show they have an understanding of Buddha dharma?

I write and speak definitely with a very clear view because I know if I do not then present generations will not be heard in the future as well.

If we all parrot famous masters then we all will not pass on the great teachings of Buddha as we live them, as they are taught in sutras and by the great masters who lived, live, and to come.

I’ve translated enough commentaries to know the style sutras are written is perceived by Western elites as complex, poetic, commanding, authoritative with some references given by famous great masters in the past who were ancient or contemporaries of theirs.

We are the the masters of our time, we must write or speak Dharma with certainty.

Academics limit content, paraphrase, interject their non-Buddhist ideologies and biases into their translations, commentaries and teachings in Buddhism.  Yet they do not practice it, nor believe in any part of it.  So how does this make them the best source for your Buddhist study?  How does a profession based on guesswork (hypothesis are guesses), obscurification of:  history, facts, and sources be at all a reputable source?

Sangha have struggled to achieve their education in Western based institutions facing this reality of extreme prejudice in what academics consider Buddha dharma and what is actually Buddha dharma.  Academics will censure Sangha to preserve their personal views Buddha, Dharma and Sangha.

Sangha have to concede the truth in order to receive their university education, even in Buddhist studies: of the content in the Tripitaka, the actual methods of Buddhist practices, even our traditions are not given respect.

I’ve been told educators in Religious Studies, Psychology, nonpracticing Buddhist scholars that it is OK for them to take and profit from Buddha Dharma including my translations to make themselves money or give themselves authority or fame so they get more money.   Academia repression should be cut out of our minds when we write or speak for they do not know the life we live or legacy we carry as Sangha, they do not believe or practices the virtues or precepts of Sangha.  Apologetic styles, historical-critical contrasts, debates, etc are not to shape our voices as Samgha.  We must speak, write and act in certainty when we teach from the Tripitaka, that will continue our legacy as Buddha’s descendant masters.

Most of Academia does not follow present or the vast centuries of Sangha scholars (bhikshu and bhikshuni who study Tripitaka contents and translate them); a vast majority cannot translate and rely on their student’s dissertations or a very tiny pool of scholars who do translate.  So they hypothesize instead and rely on media which is heavily skewed to commercialized contents.

If Academia can reform itself and invite or hire more Sangha who are qualified to teach (must be qualified through scholarship not through MA or PhD by other Sangha) then there is hope they can learn from us without just riding our backs trying to get to the bank.

Ven. Hongyang, Bhikshuni, Calm Clarity, Ames, Iowa

Posted in Buddhism, Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Dharma Talks, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Vinaya

New Page as Traveling Sangha offering Dharma

I’ve decided to offer my humble services teaching dharma and precepts in English to temples and monasteries.  I’ve been encouraged by my dharma friends to start to let more Sangha know that I am now willing to travel to their way places.  I’ve strongly believed in practicing one tradition during one’s monastic life and for me that is Chinese Buddhism.  I’ve never dabbled or practiced other religions since taking refuge and five precepts.   And since becoming a bhikshuni I have experienced the guidance of the Vinaya precepts that have given me such comfort and solidity in my daily life!  I want people to understand that comfort and solidity is very important foundation for mind training.  Refuge and 5 Precepts are the foundation for everyone’s practice and should be taken as the basic framework for their practice.

Sangha can see the difference and you can feel the difference in your daily life when you have precepts even as a householder.  It does support you.  It does benefit your mind training.

For those interested in having me talk you can contact me via email venhongyang (at) gmail.com  and I will respond with information to help you decide to furnish an air ticket or a train ticket.  I have freed up my fall to spring schedule, and will open my spring to summer to accommodate your scheduled events and services.

If you are Western people you may not understand how to sponsor Sangha to give dharma talks and precepts.  You usually ask first then offer the transportation cost plus housing and dana monetary offering at the day’s end or end of event.

I only practice Chinese Buddhism and that’s the context of my Dharma talks and training/encouragement in Precepts (Refuge and 5 Precepts, next year qualified for VInaya Precepts and 8 Precepts giving training and ordination for monastics).  I will only transmit the Dharmagupta lineage as that is the one I hold myself.  I will not participate in multi-yana (Theravada, Mahayana combined lineages being offered as a choice to the candidates to pick one) ordinations ever, so don’t ask.  I will only transmit my dharmagupta lineage ordination line with only dharmagupta lineage masters beside me and of proper numbers.

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Dharma Books, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Solitary Living, Temple life, Vinaya

Sangha Conduct – Advice to Americans in robes invite for contributors

English: Chinese Buddhist monks performing a f...
English: Chinese Buddhist monks performing a formal ceremony in Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, China. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Regarding my invite for Sangha members to contribute their wisdom to Sangha Conduct-Advice to Americans in Robes.

Only Sangha fully ordained in robes presently in good standing are asked to contribute.

Living anywhere you have to deal with Americans in robes, or if you are an American in robes; any ethnic group, any tradition. Declare your tradition and give me a brief autobiography

Living in solitude on your own or living in community.

Any level of English, it will be edited for typos and grammar as best I can do.

ANY STYLE, poetry, plain speak, write like you telling another Sangha member some needed advice.  Share stories if you wish, keep the dharma names in them or make an obvious fake name, something like Ven.  ChattyKathy or Ven. Snipesalot… you know be creative or not.  ANY way you write is perfectly ok.

The deadline is Monday June 24, 2013.

And no limits to length on your contribution, but at least a page not a sentence. No Koan, no gungan; Haiku if you must but need to include a lesson or verbiage to add to it or increase our understanding in the Vinaya or Buddha dharma or life in general.

All your work if you have citations include them if not I will find what I can if citing sutras or other ppls words declare in the sentence (paraphrased/written by/from NAME if have year or page great if not just a name).

Write for the Sangha not the public.

It will be on Amazon through my account for sale. Selling a book there does not make you rich, I’m not rich, occasionally I get a partial tank of gas out of it every few months or so. Mostly it’s for benefit of future generations. You can sell it too, I’ll give you advice a bit later on that.

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Conflicts in Buddhist Life, Mahayana culture, Sangha Relationships

How to spot fakes in the Sangha

 Facebook counts when Sangha use it, it counts the same as speaking in public; in fact the whole world.  Wise Sangha know this, purity in precepts must be observed as it cannot be recovered once it is lost.  Lying, fraud, criminal actions… all are observed in such a public place… a true Sangha deports themselves properly, knows the defeat is instant upon the act.  This one was defeated a long time ago, I just didn’t know the facts… I was genuinely surprised, very shocked.  It took me 2 days to figure out a course of action and consult the elders on the right protocol.  It took her 5 days to respond and she was on FB all along.  I can’t see her, or write a response, even her wordpress is private because all she posts there are her stories about her new gauges and photos of them.    She should be filled with shame, absolute shame for her lies are many and very serious and criminal.  Asking for donations because she claims to be bhikshuni… shame for deep shame… bad karma, so bad. I am so sorry for her.  I can’t connect to guide her at least guide her to a more moral realistic life.  At least she admitted she hardly wears her robes, maybe she will transition into lay life more easily now.  I wish her well, I really do. This photo of her is one she put out on her public photos, she is in Mongolia and her students are snapping photos of her in sweatshirts, gauges now replace her earrings, she is very worldly with with lots of mental distress that is what  I am concerned about, the mental health decline I saw during chat before this was very worrying.   PLEASE note that I didn’t block her, but Vinaya rules govern who I can communicate to and when a bhikshuni is defeated they are not in communion with the rest of us, no matter what tradition in Buddhism they follow, she was ordained in the Mahayana Dharmagupta Vietnamese lineage through her master Ven. Karuna Dharma.  I have notified the temple she came from IBMC and they would not comment on the matter. They are busy moving forward in more positive directions as I am doing.  Posting this for you to read and learn from, for I sure did.

 A Facebook Note republished here. Sad…conclusion in 5 days.Buddhist nuns shave their heads, uncover their heads, do not wear earrings

Precepts, a hill of beans strange convo with now unfriended old friend

by Ven Hong Yang Shi (Notes) on Thursday, April 4, 2013 at 11:06am

Ven Hong Yang Shi · 280 followers

11 hours ago ·

Ummm…. the Vinaya clearly states that sex in any form is a break with parajika precepts. No matter what is happening around the world in temples, monasteries and centers with fully ordained monks or nuns in both Mahayana and Theravada. A disturbing story about monks that  umm.. of a position I’ve never heard of in sex.

Bhutan | Bhutan Makes Condoms AvailableTo Buddhist Monks To Stop Spread Of STDs

www.buddhistchannel.tv

The Buddhist Channel (BC) is a globalnews platform that provides non-sectarian news and features on Buddhism. The BCis the world’s final word on Buddha Dharma related development, covering allmajor traditions of Buddhism such as Theravada, Mahayana, Vajrayana and Zen.

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林永斌, Brighid Wu and Jit Chuan Chaw like this.

Taita Wounded Bird Wth, thats sick! But its isolated incidents im sure ! I hope

11 hours ago via mobile · Like

Brighid Wu Unfortunately, such incidents have always been there. Having had more than one robed Buddhist monk make passes at me, this is a welcome development. Now if only monastics of all religions will actually tackle the issue of sex with more forthrightness, perhaps it will help monastics take precepts with much more honesty and clarity. Celibacy can be freeing, of course. Sexual repression is not.Unfortunately, it’s easy to conflate the two, which gets many folks into trouble.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi And despite this channels claim I just read it above saying they are the final word on Buddha dharma…etc. They hardly cover the world’s Buddhist activities. They focus on their own tradition and a few sensational stories. Burma, Thailand, Tibet suicides, complain bitterly about non Theravada monks entering their countries and receiving dana…concluding they must be fakes. Sex is featured alot, like in scandals, politics, and now monks sex positions…. blah.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Apparently from this website it’s a regular issue with the monks. Since the issue is HIV and STDs are dramatically on the rise.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Well… humm… maybe we should write that book then.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Brighid Wu Sad, indeed. But not unexpected. I hope the Bhutanese monasteries can work it out with some frank discussion amongst the monks. Clear the issue with sunlight.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi YEs, from my own POV,I always wondered how the guys pushed the “off” button in terms of dealing with their own sexualty and the sudden commands of Vinaya to not even have … dreams.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Ven Hong Yang Shi And I don’t think we need to know what they try to get away with in terms of not breaking with the Vinaya precepts. This article was a little over the top in the technique described.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Taita Wounded Bird When i was orthodox christian we had a complete Russian monastery in Houston who left the bishops as it was being investigated internally by the bishops for sexual wrong doings! Its a monastery and any kind sex is wrong there

Pedophilia and homosexuality is prominent where there is no strong leadership as abbot or abbess, that’s why most abbots or abbesses get a bad name as hard or mean, they have to be stern or else anything goes
11 hours ago via mobile · Like

Taita Wounded Bird Boston, not houston

11 hours ago via mobile · Like

Brighid Wu I don’t know much about how male Buddhists are enjoined to deal with their drives. Maybe that’s something to ask them. I can say that in Daoist monastic practice, this is regarded asone of the areas in which women are said to have an easier time, generally. I dealt with it by circulation of energies, which is the traditional point of the thing for us.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Yes, I do agree. TaitaWounded Bird and those they let anything goes get a worse rep. Brighid Wu speaking of myself. Sexuality I do think for ladies is easier. We are not hardwired for it like those poor men are. For me, I found it less of a problem as from awakening to sleeping I am constantly busy. I never had time to think about it,except when there was unwanted attention. I do circulate the energy, and If women don’t channel that energy someway that they get really mean and bitchy.They replace sexuality with violence, hitting, reverting to childish mean stuff(or that’s my theory anyway). People need a hobby, or life pursuit beyond doing chores or working. That helps alot.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Ven Hong Yang Shi A rumor I was told bymy Chinese medical doc was that nuns had to be particularly careful to monitor their dreams. They are subject to dream lover or raping according to him because of the purity of their vows and practices. Some black magic men target them for energy type of vampireism… or something like that.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Ven Hong Yang Shi And believe me if I have to be an abbess then run into the sexuality issue another person has whileliving with me… omg… I would just want to … freak. But wouldn’t because my mommy mode would kick in to find out what the reason for the fault would be… then handle it hopefully the way you do teenagers.. I guess more so of talk therapy and getting them through the struggle to correct but if full on sex…they confess to they just can’t stay… And that type of person who engages in that above… well is just too lustful and should not be monks at all.

11 hours ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi I do think de-sexing type of training should be discussed in the novice stage. This would mean opening up people to discuss their bodies and most just do not have the basics to handle such an adult discussion, especially the Asians. They think if you discuss it then you would tend to be open to doing it. I think it’s hard to remove the influence of our culture on sexuality and have a totally frank discussion with our own Western supposed free thinking here, even in the USA. I tried once in my first council with a few nuns, and geeze as soon as I mention’masturbation’ the elders didn’t want to discuss it. I had come from the POV that nobody is discussing it and how do we deal with it..and this was the best possible place with so many Western women who lived lives in the real world,were a part of the women’s lib in Buddhism and the leader was Ven Thubton Chodron who said nobody would be interested in discussing it, and lets move onto another concern even after I pushed it a bit to say well lets discuss sexuality and our vows then, she said no. And that was the sum total of it.

11 hours ago · Like

Suki Tasire Ven Hong Yang Shi, i’m a bit surprised that you are, sexual activity, sex abuse of boy monks is just as common in Buddhist facilities as in catholic ones, some of the highest ranking monks have reported on it, some even discussing it openly in the west, they have just been so secluded for so long it never came out and unfortunately is still largely being ignored.

11 hours ago · Like · 1

Brighid Wu I’m not sure about this theory that strict monasteries have more problems with this, nor that Westerners are more amenable to discussing it. I mean, the past few years have seen many fairly stark examples of Western Buddhist monasteries and orders plagued to the roots with sexual misconduct and abuse, all hidden within a shroud of phony holiness and discretion. To be sure, some of these traditions were started in tune with the permissive atmosphere of baby boomer hippies all looking for “iconoclastic” or “crazy wisdom” teachings. But strict groups are also plagued, and often in worse ways. The sexual abuse of children in the Catholic church is now a globally infamous example of this, but it’s only a matter of time before stories appear for Buddhist sanghas, too.Personally, the monks who came on to me were from “strict” Asian American monasteries. So the common element, at least that I can discern, is that of a lack of open accountability. Groups need both “strict”accountability to standards and communal well being (applied to leaders too!)but also need an “open” ability to discuss these issues as they appear without veils of secrecy, at least with other monastics/sangha and any involved parishioners/parisa. With both standards applied, the”sunshine” doesn’t let cobwebs form. Anyway, I sure pray you have no major issues in your monastery as you move forward to establishment. No doubt you can find your way forward with the help of the Buddhas if anyone can.

10 hours ago · Like · 1

Thich Nu Tam Phuc @Suki Tasire Ven Hong Yang Shi did not say she was sexually active! [Suki Tasire Ven Hong Yang Shi, i’m a bit surprised that you are, sexual activity,] if that is what you were trying to say above. and thereason there are problems with celebacy in monastic settings is because monks/nuns dont know why they are celebate. expecially those who are ordained as children. Ive said it before and i will say it again if you truly have renucination, which is the ONLY correct reason to take ordination, this is notan issue! you wont need to discuss it or channel the energy, or be punished by vows, or rules, for thinking about it. in Tantrayana we do have means to channel the energy, and we are fortounate in that way, but it is not about channeling the energy so we can keep celebate, because house-holders also use these methods and many do have mates. its about using a powerful energy for spritual/mental/ physcal enlightenment. and with women it is eaiser to not be sexually…. idk cant think of a good word… but no we dont have that problem like men do, like some one said above, they are hard wired differently, these celebacy vows were desigined for them. not us, it is part of the crap we have taken on trying to be like them. and is part of the crap we need to let go of!i am getting ‘real tired’ of nuns trying to be like the monks! we are different and we need to begin to embrace our goddess nature! [gonna watch my head! iknow im gonna get it from ya’ll on that one! LOL BRING IT ON!!! lol  ] i havent read the article yet, i just commenting on the comments… will be back for coments on the article soon…  PEACE!

5 hours ago · Edited · Like · 1

Thich Nu Tam Phuc well the only thing i can say about this article isif this is what is going on in Butan….. [Psychiatrists suggest the spread of disease could be a result of mental stress. [WHAT!?!] It is not uncommon for monks and nuns, mostly between the ages of 15 and 25, to visit psychiatrists.[WHAT!!??] Even senior monks show symptoms of severe stress, especially when they are undergoing long periods of meditation,] [WHAT!?!?] “About 70 to 80 percent of (senior) monks are obese, hypertensive and also suffer from backache because of their sitting posture and sedentary lifestyle,”[WTH?!?]…..then they are doing something severly WRONG!! …and sex is the least of thier problems… [and dont get it twisted i didnot say HIV and STD is the least of thier probs. i said SEX..]

5 hours ago · Like · 1

Thich Tam Khong you tell em girl.! Seems to me that Thich Nu Tam Phuc is the only one with any clear sight here.

3 hours ago · Edited · Like

Suki Tasire You misunderstood me ThichNu Tam Phuc, I did not think Ven. Is sexually active, I meant I’m surprised that she is surprised at the news item, since sexual misconduct is not just happening in Burma but many other monasteries in all Buddhist traditions. Their long isolation had just allowed that to stay hidden.

2 hours ago · Like · 1

Ven Hong Yang Shi I think Suki Tasire was commenting on my being surprised about this situation in Bhutan. I’ve been reading of sex of abuse of boys in many communities alot published by that channel and in the news. There is a problem no matter what tradition the monks come from. I do not know why but there is more crime in their monasteries and more sexual activity like the ones mentioned in the article and in the posts.

I’m not alone in being able to be celibate. I do have a woman’s sexuality, I just don’t have sex. Thich TamKhong, Thich Nu Tam Phuc is not the only woman commenting here.

Regarding diverting the sexual urge. Ireally can’t understand how hard it would be for women to do this anyway.Channeling energy like Brighid Wu and I referred to is taught in Daoist practice and Traditional Chinese Medicine. This is done for health and not for sex. This is not sexual yoga. In fact, sexual yoga is a forbidden practice and been banned by the Daoist and Buddhist association for centuries. It is so forbidden that if you bring it up, people get very upset and if you push it like you want to do it then they throw you out. I was warned to be suspicious of men or women who promoted it, and to distance myself greatly from them. So yes. People do not do sex yoga. it’s a trap into sex and only that.

Tantra Sexual Yoga. I would not recommend relying on Tantra Sexual practice for nuns or monks. Sorry, I do understand the history and the premise of the practice and there are better ones to focus on that this one. It cannot be a technique to keep purity and I know that idea has not been suggested so I am bringing it up. The reason it is not good for purity of precepts is that it is intentional sex even if it is just imaginary. Intentional sex is trap that leads to break from the precept of no sex, it has been the downfall of many who try to perform sexual yoga.

Sexual yoga is not a new invention of the Tantrika, that little gem has been around since men invented it. No monk ornun has been known to master. Bragging rights were limited only to a few extremely high level men (lamas) who had coupled with women (wives or consorts?) and were suspected at the time and they and their followers passed down to stories told by tantra gurus to entice their listeners centuries after they happened or where said to. So why should monks and nuns insist on try to do tantra sexual yoga, well even the Dalai Lama has come out against it, saying it was a lay practice? Do you wish to compete in it…due to what? romantic ideas? are you missing sex? leave the robes then become a happy householder or a companion? then get a pet, not someone to pet. Is it due to your competitiveness? being told that you should not do this practice and valid reasons for not doing it, if this then grow up. Are you being anti-authoritarian…you can’t tell me what to do!…your not my teacher…. is childish! Get psychological help if this overtakes your mind and becomes your life focus. Try better ways to train yourself for enlightenment. And really there are better ones out there for monks and nuns than a mastery of lay Buddhist practices.

2 hours ago · Like · 1

Brighid Wu @Thich Nu Tam Phuc – I would not begin to presume to judge the calling of anyone else to renunciate/celibate vows… Seems like bad juju to do so. … At any rate, not sure what “true renunciation” or “goddess nature” mean. In Daoism at least,there’s no point in celibacy beyond energy accumulation and transformation since we don’t “renounce” anything about the world. Energy transformation IS the entire process for us. Now that I ponder it, perhaps this unloads the issue somewhat, uncharges it, makes it less dangerous. Sexuality is simply one of the constituent parts of a person, to be dealt with in the process of ascesis. It’s observable that people continue to be sexual beings regardless of monastic dedication. So, just open the thing up to frank consultation and analysis, using whatever appropriate tools for your tradition,and leave it at that. No shame, no repression, heck, no energy manipulation if you don’t want. But it does crop up even for long time monks. They deserve todeal with it minus over weaning judgment or condemnation for the naturally shifting realm of emotions we all have to confront.

about an hour ago · Like

Brighid Wu Ohhhh, haha, Ven. Hongyang helped clarified something for me in her comment. No, we were not meaning sexual yoga in terms of energy channelling, I think! Such overt sexual tantrapractices are usually a gross form of vampyrism, really unproductive and oftenabusive. I meant inner energy work. I suppose that energy work can belegitimately done, and has, with another person. But it’s entirely inappropriatefor monastic setting. Frankly… I can’t imagine why anyone would want to havesex in a monastery, but, hey, many seem to! :S

about an hour ago · Like

Brighid Wu It also occurs to me to stress that sex is only an overt facet of the “lowest”, most coagulate grade of energy in our tradition (jing), not even the energy itself. Jing is regarded as life’s pith, which drives and is spent in generation through the Gate of Earth (sex and reproduction). Is this the same in Buddhist articulation? I don’t know…

about an hour ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Brighid Wu Interesting. And I raise this question of ‘renounce’ this word is often bandied about by Buddhists and maybe it should be changed to just what the Chinese call‘left home’. Because nobody in the West gets that people in the East do not use that word in the same Christian sense that it was actually used in the West. I did not renounce my householder life, I left it. The reason for leaving was to become a Bhikshuni to seek Enlightenment in this lifetime. The motivation was already there, I waited for what… a signal? timing. I acted on my resolve because of 9/11. It was not the reason for my resolve. My resolve was to have a life that I didn’t have to apologize for, try to fit into, or receive rewards for. I found great happiness in my Daoist studies but no master. The monastery life is important place to train, and I did not want to be someone’s wife to do it. So I found Buddhism and it was clear and expedient. But I am not a renunciate, I am a left home person, a mendicant, a beggar.

about an hour ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi I think Brighid Wu that idea of jing the vital energy is still the same in Chinese Buddhism. Chinese Buddhism has many ideas shared with Daoism.

Outside path is Tantra Sex. Tantric sex based on yoga is to combine “yoga” (union of mind with body to the greater universe (hindu?), it was perverted somehow into the idea of using it to gain Enlightenment. It’s a house holder practice sold to the public as a method for transforming the woman’s energy into the man first to enable him to reach enlightenment then also so that the woman increases her chances of a male rebirth in the next life so she too will have a chance at Buddhahood as a man. She is the vehicle for the man’s path to Enlightenment in his lifetime and the cause for her male rebirth her next life.

There are levels to practice that start with visualizing the practice first without touching another’s body, then mastery of the body is the second stage, there is supposed to be the presence of an advanced teacher. At what stage when you do “it” or what I do not know or care to know. Many tantra sex teachers these days teaching I am almost sure just make up stuff that sounds vaguely Buddhist to get women in their beds.

about an hour ago · Edited · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc ok Ven Hong Yang Shi u kno i luv ya’ but you have not left the house holder life you still hold a house… i would say you have renounced it but left it not at theis time , maybe when you actually left it an went in to a monastery. but know you are back, just cuz u dont have a husband soesent count as not being a house holder, and just because you live in and maintain a house dosenot mean you do not have renucination. and tantric SEXyoga and Tantra buddhism are 2 completly different things, and this is the reason we dont talk about them to those w/o tantric vows and commitments, so that they dont get perverted in to thinking they are tantric sex yoga. they are different, and that is all i will say about them , unless you have vows and commitiments to tantric buddhism you dont know what you are talking about ,anything you read or think or research is wrong! you will never hear or read any correct info on tantric buddhism because true dedicated practioneers will not tell you , if any one tells you it is some one with broken or degenerate commitments that knows not what the Heck they are talking about! tantra is a ear wispered linage, never written down, any books or anything you read on the net is superficial common knowledge all that written above by Ven Hong Yang,Bhikshuni 比丘尼宏揚 may be tantric sex youga but i dont know anythingabout that, it is clearly not anything that has to do with our tibetan tantrapractice….

about an hour ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi What really bother’sme is that in the Bhutanese monasteries they have children that are beingmolested by the men. This really bothers me. Nobody there is protecting thekids. And they are being groomed to what? Being with men. Nearly all theTheravada monasteries have young children boarding in their schools. So thisleaves us to wonder about those kids when they hit puberty. They are inventingnew forms of sex as outlets to their biology, they grow up in or outside themonastery and then what? Perversions? What quality of life do they have?

A second point of the article is thegreater population in their monasteries HAS to seek psychological help to cope.In that case the main problems pointed out are only the tip of the iceberg.

about an hour ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Thich Nu Tam Phuc I do disagree with you. I’m not a householder. I’ve left that lay life behind. I am a bhikshuni, true I live in solitude and manage my own apartment my money and cook for myself. That does not mean I resumed being a lay woman. I have not. I do not use a mix of Christian words to define myself, just the ones I have learned in Chinese Buddhism. And BTW I am not attacking you Chitta. I’m clarifying what I wrote, so do not be upset when I write what I do.

Tantra has been much discussed about.Please lady, there is nothing I am not unclear about, the ‘whispered’ tradition… well it has been written down for centuries by the Tibetans themselves, we have written records by the esteemed masters. Secrets, please once it’s out someone else’s mouth it is not a secret. There is a very famous large collection called the Mahayana Buddhist Tripitaka the Taisho Edition which hasa huge collection of esoteric sutras and commentaries. I am clear on my understanding about Tantra and I do not practice sex yoga. I explored as muchas I could before I decided against it. I really examined the available teachers of the time and found them greedy money grubbers, even in robes they asked for 2 day’s wage to attend their events, how could I afford that!

Venerable Chitta, I am truly fortunate.I had after all great advisers, some of the best that I really trusted theiradvice. I rejected Tibetan Buddhism because it put too much emphasis on someoneelse to give you their opinions on how you go about travelling the Path. Isought a more independent route, following the example set forth by Buddha. Irejected Theravada for the same reason too much reliance on teachers and waytoo mental fruf fruf in their approach…not too far from being puritans oranal. I looked at Chinese Buddhism and saw a very diverse community, some relyon teachers, some rely on sutras, some rely on practices, and saw mostly allthe monks and nuns rely on the Vinaya whether they were in a community or outof it. that last part meant they had a maturity in their lineages the abilityto devote their livesto the Path with simply the Vinaya to guide them.

about an hour ago · Edited · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc i never thought you were attacking me i know you are not, you and i dont need to defend ourselves against each other, as i have told you before your straight forward and no nonsence approach is what i like about you and i am the same way very opionated,

34 minutes ago · Edited · Unlike · 1

Thich Nu Tam Phuc but i did not say LAY life… this it the inportantthing, just like Thich Tam Khong i would not call him a ‘LAY’ man he is a fullyordained Buddhist Zen Priest but he is a house holder. you main tain a house.leaving home means exactly that , to LEAVE HOME you still maintain a house youstill take care of your child you still pay bills and deal with you fam,.leaving home means EXACTLY that to leave all that behind, the buddha left homehe didnt live next door and deal with his fam day in and day out, he came bk homeYEARS afret he ‘left home’ then took the boy and ‘left home he did not resumemaintinng a house

50 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc again i will say anything you read about tantra issuperficial, any sutras you site is not the authintic practis, there is muchwritten but it is not the teachings you will get in the wispered ear to earlinage

48 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Maybe that is where we disagree. Leaving home means that you leave your former life behind, not your history, not your property, not you, not your common sense. It does not mean ignore your family. This is perhaps a mistaken notion of Western people that you need to abandon all to become a Buddhist monk or nun. It’s western thing,perhaps based upon the only monastic community we had to refer to the Catholics. That’s the sanitized puritanical approach set up by people who don’t really understand the culture in the tradition they go to in Buddhism. I studied Chinese culture, language and all the three religions in China for 20 years before I actually left home. It was due to timing that I decided to wait so long.

46 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc the beauty of the buddhas teachings is that there are 84,000 teachings, path, ways, medicines, everyone finds what they need or what thire karma ripens to present to them, mine ripened in the path of Tantraic buddhism in the tibiten linage yours ripened in the chinese tradition, i think that is great,

45 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Yes, it is great andthat is what the Chinese refer to as yuan, a fated relationship.

43 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Buddha carried his family with him, all his major disciples were family. That’s a fact. He left home, also attracted wealth and the powerful because he was the son of a King,and that King was a warrior King. So people and rulers were eager to be peaceful with him and his son. This helped the Buddha, also his family joined him, his son too.

42 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc no im not basing it on any xtian thought of renunciation or puritian thing, because i dont know anything about that, but yes you do exactly that! you leave your former life behind, & your history,your property, you, and expecially ‘you, ‘

32 minutes ago · Edited · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc many times you and i talk you speak a lot about chinese culture, but this is not about chinese culture it about buddha’s teachings and following his example and his path, and that is juts that leavingit all behind, cutting ties and cutting all of it off, that does not mean’ignoring you fam’ i never said that!

40 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc yes his family joined him on the path but not in ahouse and he still did not maintain a house, his son joined him on the path andhis wife and mother also and they all renounced the rest of the fam and did notmaintain a house and live like house holders

38 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc and at the end of the day it doesnt really amount toa hill of beans, its not like you are going to walk out of your door because ofthei thread discussion… i think you should do what is best and managable for you as all of us should, but that does not stop me from seeing the life of ahouse holder and the life of one who has phsycally left home as two differentthings.

31 minutes ago · Edited · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc most bhikshunis in the USA maintain a house because there are not many other alternatives

35 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc i think we taken over the thread no one else istalking.. LOL! i’ll shut up now

29 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Wow, lady, it sure reads like you are seriously saying I am a householder because I took responsibility and cared to act on requests for me to help out, left with permission of my preceptor to care for my dad, my crazy sis and my kid who needed a home to go to and a live in an apartment.

So what you are living Chitta? You had the same situation at IBMC, now still even overseas too.

Are you saying you are a householder?

Don’t tell me that you were living in a temple there at IBMC because when I visited I was surprised to see the layout being just old houses re purposed to house a few halls that really only rooming houses for regular folk, in the block with regular apartment buildings and other peoples houses, a scattered arrangement fit into the city of LA there and not on a separate campus or grounds. You had a downstairs full 2 bedroom apartment there, with bills to pay. Now you are living in Mongolia in a room with bills to pay in a layman’s monastery, sometimes with monks in residence.

“the life of a house holder and thelife of one who has phsycally left home as two different things.”

You wrote that Chitta, and you a restating in this thread that I am a householder, back off lady.

This does not make sense, I hope you seriously are not considering yourself defined by a building. You should be careful to not overemphasis this. This totally is off the wall.

If you hold yourself to this then ladyare you declaring yourself a householder?

I’m not happy you are writing in such a negative way in referring to me. It really surprised me that you would. I’ve left home I am not a householder. Do not confuse the matter anymore.

I write to clarify the matter for fear people reading my posts your replies are confusing the matter.

Householder is known to be a lay person and only that. Be careful Chitta I get really can get pissy about misinformation regarding my purity as a bhikshuni.

A building, a house, an apartment or a room does not define us as monks or nuns, we do. We are guided by our precepts transmitted to us on our ordination day.

I know the differences in the life of left home person and the life of a laywoman, and lady I am a left home person a full on in your face Vinaya bhikshuni. I live here in Iowa translating from the time I am up to the time I go to bed, and you are the only one I usually chat online in Facebook. Everyone of my friends that is Sangha is busy too, I get rare chances to chat with some of them I like to chat with more of the bhikshunis but, hey.. we are all busy. Of all of them I think right now I have the most time. Mostly I’m doing more online when I’m logged in here.

Monks and nuns were building houses inthe Buddha’s time and living on their own, even there are rules I know you know this too. O My it’s just really silly that you would take that tone with me.

about an hour ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc and yes i drempt about this thread all night! sry but ‘no thing’ you read about tibitan tantra is the true final word. just because its on the net or wikipida dont make it true or authintic. teachings like i said above it is only supeficial common knowledge. i dont care how many great masters wrote what or how many wonderful counselers you have had, unless you have had the empowerments and the proper teachings your info is not complete or usable, its just surface. even my own venreable master has written a book on tantra that is still not the complete teachings, i know personally many ppl who have taken the empowerments and read the book but still can not practice tantra because of not having proper or complete teachings. it is a secret still.because you dont know it. and that is what drives those away who can not handle it & thats a good thing, the less ppl who practice the stronger the practice is, it takes a certian heart to be able to handle secreat teachings. a heart that can handle a teacher & not back away from one because they think they know it all and can do it on thier own, sry but a teacher a guide is essential!  tibitan buddhism does not have anyone giving you ‘thier opioin’ on how you should follow the path, we rely on our guide some one to follow, someone who had traversed the path before us, we are grateful and humbled by our guide, what he teaches us and gives us is not just his opion. it is sage advice. it is only a humble mind that can handle that. that is why most westerns are on thier own. being independant, and not able to stay with a guide lama or teacher, and ‘stay with’ does not mean having to be ‘all in they face’ everyday. you can have aguide and go out in to the world or to a different lama to recieve teachings,but tibetan buddhist practionereers have a root lama. and @Brighid Wu that is kinda my point that as women you dont know what goddess nature is, and that is why so many are all trying to be like men, if you are a renuncinate then you know what renuncination is , since you speak of Daoist practice, you should know that the Dao that can be spoken is not the true Dao. that includes renuncation,goddess nature and tantra.

about an hour ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi No, you are not understanding Tantra, it is not just confined to Tibet. Also, I did not just pull my information from the internet or some books. I’ve have the joy of have really good teachers. I am referring to my experiences and study. As a translator I have access to the entire esoteric section. I’ve translated some really good instructions, that are not available normally to people.

48 minutes ago · Edited · Like

Thich Tam Khong old testament, new testament. Theravada, Mahayana. both very sincere. very similar, and very different. This very point is the pivot point which separates the two clans…e pluribus unum. It is a very real distinction in this thing we call Buddhism and the division among us has the power to rip us apart. Relying on Dogma will kill us. Buddhism hails change above all. And diversity is the rule. If we start questioning each others sincerity based on 2500 year old writings than wemight as well be Christians, cause we sure the hell aren’t Buddhist.

55 minutes ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc yes that is exactly what i am saying i am not living the life of a house holder , just because ibmc was set in a bunch of houses,most buddhist ‘temples’ in the west are set in houses. yes we rented rooms tolay ppl but no i didnot pay rent and take care of my family, i took care of the temple my nunnery that had nuns acasionally, and it was not my home, my home was in indy i left it. i had no bills to pay in ibmc and i have no bills to pay here, i am not living in a lay mans temple he is not a lay man he is a householder, again i say you are not a lay person . house holder and lay is not mutually inclusive. you keep missing that point. yes i know you are a full on vinaya bhikshuni. and i am not taking a negitive tone, i am not attacking you and sory if you think i am and that ppl here wil misunderstand who you are. you have said that ibcm was not a temple and that i am living in a lay man’stemple, dont dish it out if you cant take it. dont let ppl misunderstand who i am either. you should be careful also i can get just as pissy.. and i understand tantra VERY well, i am not talking about any esoteric teachings ofall tiditions i am talking about tibetan tantra. it is NOT all the same… yes exactly Thich Tam Khong so if we loose our frienship over this then it really wasnt much of a frienship in the first place… as the buddha teaches friends become enimies…enimines be come friends…strangers be come friends… so you can get as pissy as you want… i havent changed my view…. but i will say NO ONE CONFUSE MY WORDS Ven Hong Yang Shi is a full on pure bhikshuni. i never doubted it for a monent!

50 minutes ago · Like

Thich Tam Khong no argument with me. I’m glad there are monastics, even wanted to be one at one time. I’m just saying each to their own. I am not questioning your status or our friendship. I was disparaging about how two two fully ordained Nuns, neither living the most traditional life, but both the most sincere people I know, why…..they would question each others motives based on dead words. love you both.

28 minutes ago · Edited · Like

Thich Tam Khong but like you say I am that other kind of Buddhist the kind with a small ‘b’ and this is a sand box for monastics and their issues,not mine. So I will say ado.

22 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi If you can’t speak Tibetan then you can’t hear the whispered teachings. I don follow Tibetan I follow my own tradition which I am fluent in the language; it is like many other countries filled with many esoteric traditions and schools. (Esoteric traditions in China, Vietnam, Korea, Japan, Mongolia not just Tibet, route of transmission is from India to China, Tibet, Korea, Vietnam, Japan). When you really get a chance to study each countries traditions and history in Buddhism it’s really very cool to find a mix of influences, that is the norm and pretty fun to study.

Do not refer to me as a householder ever again. I mean it. I’m not tolerating that from you. I wrote on this enough.Please respect me enough to understand the reasons I wrote above. I’m very traditional and you know it. We go rounds all the time, just not so public.

I consider you my friend who is in a different tradition and you are open to many practices that I do not favor or promote; but you know I respect your choices. And why you think you have to tell me off is your problem not mine. I am a good friend, I tell you like it is to help you and support you.

21 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Thich Tam Khong, you are out of line. I was not address you in any of my posts directly. I think Venerable Chitta was addressing you though. Venerable Chitta and I are old friends. What would you know of a traditional life? You are writing foolish.

I’m very traditional I live in solitude with permission from my preceptor. I am not going out travelling, to movies or eating out, just translating all the time. I’m very conservative. I’ve stayed in robes all along in the Chinese Buddhist tradition in which I trained and ordained in, why would you assume I’m non-traditional?

Thich Nu Tam Phuc It’s unbelievable nowyour friend is referring to me as nontraditional, ME, I am shaking my head andnot going to engage your posts in the future to save this from happening to meanymore! See what you got going? Wow, you could have posted all your stuff in chat?!

6 minutes ago · Like · 1

Thich Nu Tam Phuc bologna! i dont need to speak tibetan to hear the wispered teachings! that is a crazy lie invented by those who want to keep others stupid and make up exclusive cults.

a few seconds ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc also i was also given permission to take care of mydad while he was dying, and i was holding a house. also after he died i openeda business a tea house that i hoped would become a dharma center id did not it became a business and at night i was maintain a house that is why i sold it all an moved back to the temple and it is the same issue i am having here where this lama wants me to work a job, and i want to just do dharma work.

2 hours ago · Like

Thich Nu Tam Phuc i respect what you wrote and, you need to respect what i wrote i also tell you like it is to help you understand. you dont always have the difinitive answer on all other buddhist. i never said you were not triditional, and i dont see what triditional has to do with it, just because i feel this is a definition of a householder i am not saying that you are a lay person or not pure, i wont tolerate you setting out misinformation about tantra in the tibetan triditio neither! so now that every one got thier self cherishing feelings hurt and ranaway from the convo, my work here is done…

27 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Actually my information is correct about tantra. I had 20 years to study Buddhism before I left home. And I have had the good fortune to encounter very experienced knowledgeable teachers in Tantra teachings. I chose not to go to famous people and stayed away from trendsters or the poly-religious neo-practitioners that mix various religions in public ways by posting their practices and being outlandish and joining in various off the Path religious practices. I am well studied coming up on 32 year of meditation experience and study, well monitored by seniors, and very well connected to my teachers. My MA you know is on Tibetan Buddhism. I did a post grad on higher education that I wrote curriculum that passed certification for K-12 standards on the topic of meditation in the Iowa State University Education college that was peer reviewed and passed the state standards.

3 minutes ago · Like

Ven Hong Yang Shi Across the board inall the traditions they define Buddhist householder as a lay person, morerecently it is said to be a wealthy lay person. This is the standard definitionof householder, not yours.

And look at what you did to this post? Iposted about a problem in Bhutan, it is noteworthy because the govt. thereresponded responsibly by providing condoms to a problem that is being ignoredacross the Buddhist global community the sexual activity of monks and boysraised in monasteries without normal healthy parental guidance. That’s thepost.

But you turned into your thing Chitta,about you. That is what you did do. I am offended by that, by the name calling,and the immaturity you have shown here in public. You are not defending Tantra,it’s not about that. It’s like what those other people did in the BMN community group, trolls/kids hijacking the threads diverting the conversation from the original post. You chose to do that to me, a friend. When you could have chatted to me in privacy.

a few seconds ago · Like

REASON FOR POSTING THIS IN NOTES:  Chitta removed her posts from the thread.  She sent me a message that I cannot reply to because she blocked me.  Her buddy also blocked me.  I have no interest in communications with either at this point.  I do not do things out of emotions on Facebook, for crying out loud it’s a place where you type!  How is that emotional?  I value my friends, many here I do not know in person but I have the joy of reading posts and learning, also I have greater joy of finding a great number of Sangha here.

When Chitta deleted her conversations on my post, it made it a one sided conversation and misleading.

It took me two days to figure out the proper course of action was to unfriend her, she had ample time to respond.  She was online, I saw she was but doing other things, not once when in this conversation as it was being done in  public on Facebook did she ever jump into chat with me, something odd since she has been online daily, we usually use Facebook chat twice a day, I stay up extra late to converse in chat with her and try to get on in the morning to chat with her before she finished for the day.

I was feeling sorry that she was so very far away from her friends and family.  Her situation in Mongolia is worrisome, she is the only woman in a mens lamasary (lama is a married man a layman with specialized education and birth), the resident monks and lay women and men’s staff are not getting on well with her according to her chats, she says the kids are running around destroying temple property and stealing stuff from her classroom, she has experienced days of not getting her meals the latest being 3-5 days without meals due to monastery money problems; she ran out of her pay (yes she is indeed working as an English teacher, not employed as a nun) and the kitchen was locked up as was the laundry room.  They fired all their teachers according to her, the boss is out more than he is in(he is in business, thats ok IMHO).  They seem to be transitioning but not telling her what is going on.  So. I was trying to be there for her.  She said she was unhappy and nervous, but rejected every solution I offered. But as I was thinking that was the right thing to do, I realized she is adult, can take of herself.

And secondly I realized I was repeating a pattern with someone who I do not agree with, feel strongly she engages in off the Path behavior and beliefs, commits defeats without fear or regret or confession.  I have observed over the years of chatting online and texting that she is explosive in her emotions to me, self admits she suffers from depression and adamantly refuses my suggestions for seeking professional help as I am sure her friends and family are aware of.  She is disgustingly vulgar in swearing in chats when she is frustrated with the situation around her or does not respect other people’s choices that are in positions of authority over her, this is unsuitable behavior for someone who claims they are a nun.

In fact, seeing her in a verbal rage with Ven. Karuna Dharma over some gifts of dharma books several times in the presence of other bhikshuni at City of 10,000 Buddhas was very upsetting as she was poking and grabbing roughly the good arm of Ven. Karuna Dharma, and I decided to friend her to see if I could stop that and protect Ven. Karuna Dharma (yes, I know I was far away and at least I hoped to serve Chitta as a support and hoped to guide her into healthier thinking and more suitable behavior).  She expressed irrational thinking about Ven. Karuna Dharma and IBMC abbot someone she named Shanty, and another monk I know Ven. Kusala.  That is the underlying reason I stayed her friend over the years even when last year when she was fired from IBMC for wrongdoing and actually she left IBMC 7 months later.  Then I stayed her friend because I believed her when she blamed IBMC for her stress, I gave her the benefit of the doubt. Now after she told me she was all nervous and the same situation at the new place she worried me more since she does not speak Mongolian and as been ‘on a rampage’ around there so she can ‘get things done’, everyone is afraid of her but at least she is getting meals again.

I am living here in Iowa minding my own Path intensely translating filing my days with dharma study, duties and caring for people around me here that ask me for help when they need it.  Well, see that’s the other point, Chitta has not asked me for help, she expressed her situation there so clearly to me and it alarmed me.  But she is determined to get her nunnery there when the signs do not support that wish again.  I can’t be supporting her by maintaining a friendship that I kept up out of compassion, because she is someone who has shown herself as broken from her Vinaya root precepts, a defeated woman, even when facing her reality in Mongolia she is not acting to protect herself.

I wish her success for she wrote she wants to become a vajrayogini in her past chats to me; if she does that I hope it goes well for her, it is such a pity to lose a friend.

Bhikshuni gathered completed pratimoksa recitation
Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Chinese culture, Conflicts in Buddhist Life, Mahayana culture, Sangha Relationships

Mentally ill sufferers cannot find a “cure” in Buddhism

My wife reading in bed. And it wasn't because ...
My wife reading in bed. And it wasn’t because she was trying to get to sleep. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Buddhism
Buddhism (Photo credit: shapour bahrami)
English: Image for mental health stubs, uses t...
English: Image for mental health stubs, uses two psych images – psychiatry (medicine) and psychology (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Trazodone
Trazodone (Photo credit: Divine Harvester)
Rethink Mental Illness
Rethink Mental Illness (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Mind training is certainly beneficial but if the person cannot make their own effort outside the temple or retreat place it cannot be beneficial. Too many times in the USA people turn to Buddhist centers or temples for “cures” for their very serious mental health problems and go away devastated when they cannot benefit outside after the retreat or service. 

The truth is that the mental illness must be addressed first, for many that means medicine. The psychiatric world in the United States has in the past met the needs of the mentally ill with therapy and behavioral therapy. But alas, the person’s insurances will only pay for 10 sessions a year or for the lifetime. That along with medicines has proven stability. Because of the insurance company policies it forced a change so that now, psychiatrists only rely on medicine not therapy. 

The second problem is the choice entirely of the mentally unwell. They often stop therapy first not because of insurance but because they want to slip “out of it”. They are addicted to the state of being unwell. They stop progressing deliberately. And because in most cases by our rights for health choices are protected by law parents, spouses, and friends cannot force them to continue the beneficial treatment. This happens in every case I have seen personally. The person makes a deliberate choice to return to the unwell state and refuses to go to therapy or in many cases take medicines. So they slide down into chaos and they love it. It’s true and seems unbelievable. 

I am a twin of a sister who has history of depression (she hid it until we were forced to deal with her breaks from reality in psychotic episodes requiring hospitalizations for month at least 3 to 6 times a year) and repeated suicides (3 big life threatening attempts a year), now she is in a nursing home – she attempted suicide and had a stroke that left her paralyzed on the left side of her body due to overdose of Trazodone.   http://www.livestrong.com/article/83762-side-effects-trazodone-overdose/  My twin sister is the one on your left in the coat and white sneakers sshe had been through 3 years of psychotic breaks and repeated hospitalizations at that point the stroke happens later in 2007.

She was a prescription abuser a former nurse who knew exactly how to work the system to her benefit. She would be hospitalized doing really great, then get released and continue therapy for 1 week or 2 weeks and stop and slide downward so fast it was scary. No reasoning, no pleading, no rescuing, no logic to it, just her choice to slide down.

I am a bhikshuni, it took me years to get what was going on with her, because I was her twin and I was easy to fool because I was used to her behavior. I was always copying her in world outlook and caused myself unnecessary grief when I reasoned the same way due to the fact I didn’t know her history. I tell you, something you must not apply as cure like our Buddhist training. It’s for our each and every one of us to use to relieve our suffering and correct our own thinking is gradual process, not a therapy. I had to figure my sister out myself… parents hid her problems from me. I had to unlearn unheathly thinking. It took me quite awhile and now I am very happy to be me without all that learned unhealthy thinking. Because I had my truths: I am happy always, I see the world as positive place, I see others as my support, I see me as worthy, I see my faults and know I can correct them, my goals are changing and support my life satisfaction

I do not suffer from depression or mental illness when my sister started having breaks with reality, I ran to the doctor for evaluation and worry about myself becoming unwell and raising my daughter. I was reassured by the doctor and received counseling to get over my stress, because I had to rescue her many times and was a single mom with a 4 year old newly separated from my husband and hurting from that myself. They said I was handling myself beautifully. I would wait until the house was quiet and cry from the stress (they said I needed that and not to repress it). Almost every night. Until time took care of me. I got over it because I had moved on.

 

Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Buddhist Health and Wellness, Chan - authentic Masters words, Chinese culture, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships, Translation Resources, Vinaya

Build Iowa’s First Nunnery

 

Build the first Iowa Buddhist nunnery

Build the first Iowa Buddhist nunnery. The need to train in English is what has been missing for 160 years of Buddhist history in the United States.  This place will meet the needs of residents of this state interested in Buddhist study. The nunnery monastics will provide traditional services, cultural, educational, and practical training for those interested in Buddhism.

To understand Buddhism in the USA you need Sangha that speak English.  To train you need to be able to ask detailed or receive detailed instructions in order to progress or you are the perpetual visitor with no real depth.  You are limited by language or can’t access masters of higher levels to grow.  Even you may never know who the Elders are that are talented, capable dharma masters famous in their temples for being teachers but they live in obscurity to most in the USA.  Personal contact with robed Sangha is lacking for most interested in Buddhism and greatly needed.  Temples in the East coast or West coast have some limited English programs but all are ethnic funded and full training is better in their own language, clearer, higher level of instructions and attainments by laity is very possible but not if you don’t know their language.  This is a significant obstacle to your practice in Buddhism.

The first Bhikshuni fully trained and ordained has arrived in Iowa.  This is a good first step for Iowa.  Ven. Hong Yang is an Iowan and a woman fully ordained in the Dharmagupta lineage of the Bhikshuni Sangha in Taiwan.

A cool history this Iowan.  She was tonsured at Xi Fang Temple, Brookyn, NY. She left home resolved on 9/11/2001.  She decided to stay in XFT helping in NYC, many needed to recover their spirits.  She working with and trained as a sramaneri alongside the other temple’s masters.  She is a 11 year English-Chinese translator of the Taishio Tripitaka which is in Chinese. She has published 5 books, 3 volumes translating the standardized daily recitations in the Chinese Buddhist temples into English and one rare translation of the Bao Hua Mountain monk Ven. JiXian De Qing.  The translation project will continue in the nunnery.  She and others will offer training to those interested in becoming translators.  Also she is in charge of a historical documentary film  of Buddhism in the USA is currently underway digitizing material from actual Buddhist monks and nuns who reside in the USA as they offer it documenting what has never been documented called “Sangha Walks”.  See more about this on www.sanghawalks.org

Iowans are savvy to Buddhist trends but lack access to reliable dharma masters in traditional Buddhism.  Due to the increased awareness of Buddhism and most often one of its famous methods is meditation a decision has been made to create a stable place right here to learn about Buddhism. We need a stable place so many dharma teachers can come and teach about Buddhism.  A variety of masters offering training in different schools will improve access to higher level reputable traditional teachers.  The teachers invited to come here are from the Vinaya Sangha; they must hold full precepts and be properly trained.  In order to attract them to our place, it needs to be set up first properly.  If prayers alone can motivate the Dalai Lama to come to Iowa like he did last year then it’s quite the timely to fulfill his instructions to us residing monks and nuns to become leaders of Buddhism in Iowa.  A broad base and open respectful minds will be the cornerstone of the visiting public to this new nunnery.

Iowans are proud of their history.  The historical significance to note here is of being the first nunnery that is Buddhist, second to that is the protected training environment for women and thirdly that English be the primary spoken and service language.  So that the members of the public that asks for, learns well, practices and brings back benefits to their community by enjoying traditional services, counseling, mental health services, meditation, classes, cultural events art and cultural events.

Iowans are by their very nature generous and curious.  Donate if you want to make your historical mark right now!  Be proud to be sponsor and make  your mark in Iowa history and add to Buddhist US history in our Sangha Walks project that will also flourish in a permanent collection online and media.  Care about yourself enough to create merit and virtue, benefit all aspects of your life and reduce the karmic cause and effect of negative seeds sprouting in their due time when you contribute selflessly.

What We Need & What You Get

We are open to a house, or commercial building or land purchase.  We recognize it requires more money for remodel or building on the space.  We wish to keep it minimal but safe.  Green but efficient use of space, growing fruits and vegetables, but technology embraced in media.  We are wishing to create a healthy and secure environment for you and your family to enjoy your studies and classes at our nunnery:

We need at least $40,000 total funding.  We at least need a down payment of $3000 plus 6 months operating expenses of $18,000.  We may need remodeling funds including the purchase of new appliances or major repairs up to $20,000.  Basic utilities run about $200 a month, food needs around $300 per month.   Core living costs are covered also we need liability insurance of $5,000 to cover public events to meet legal requirements and codes.

The rewards for Indiegogo:  There are very traditional Buddhist rewards offered.  The malas and the Jade were brought from Taiwan from very traditional Buddhist family store.   Most temples sell them for basic food or medicine needs. The ones offered here are the personal purchase made by Ven. Hong Yang during her training and ordination.  This means the good karma of her training and ordination has a ripple effect that is passed on in good intentions to anyone who buys or donates or receives on of these!  See the rewards for details.

All funds raised in excess of this project if not needed must be dispersed as the Vinaya guides us. The basic 4 requisites of food, clothing, shelter, and medicine are all that Buddhist monks and nuns require.  Woman have the hardest time in Buddhism to receive even the 4 requisites after they become nuns so this funding source is also greatly needed and appreciated so priority will go to this group out of compassion for the need is great. May your good karma of your generous act increase and grow 10-fold throughout your life and those of your family’s.

The Impact in Iowa and the Mid-West

Stability is made when a place to practice is also available that is basic in comfort and accessible to all who study Buddhism from traditional teachers known as the Sangha, the robed ones.  Mind training is an individual effort but training is offered in a group setting that also can give one the advantage of feeling and being emotionally and socially supported.

Build Iowa’s First Nunnery

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Posted in Buddhist community activities, Buddhist Culture, Conflicts in Buddhist Life, Mahayana culture, On the Path, Precepts Holders, Sangha Relationships

Sanitizing of Buddhism, Buddhists and erasing Sangha in America by Elitists

2,555 years ago Buddha passed away leaving the disciples and the rest of the Sangha to remember his teachings and pass them along to the next generations.  Very little has changed in the Sangha who carefully follows the Vinaya which are his guidelines of monastic conduct and instructed in his last bequest.  They carried Buddha’s teachings (the Dharma) to various countries teaching and forming practice places for generations with a great deal of sacrifice and effort.

Recently in media by Buddhist orientated sites online and in print through Tricycle, Buddhadharma, and Shambala Sun much has been made about the national form that Buddhist followers should or as they assume will eventually take in the USA.

Their Protestantism of Buddhism or rather a sanitizing or erasing/rewriting of Buddha’s history and rejection of what they identify as irrelevant to modern Americans today.  This means all the ethnic Buddhists from Thailand, Sri Lanka, China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Vietnam, Korea, India, Tibet, Nepal, Indonesia, Phillipines, Malaysia or other American countries or Europe are to be cleansed and shunned from Americans or American Buddhists as it starts with white men who are protestants who already rejected the catholics because they have monks and nuns… or maybe they are jewish who didn’t like christians at all and or even those who prefer to embrace every oddball newly created religion and market it.

They are trying to dummy-down traditional Buddhism because they couldn’t figure out  how to make it work for themselves.  Now they are trying to keep it elite and promoting a new version or a rather a odd form of Japanese Buddhism; Wow, even to do that is to disparage the efforts of the Japanese Buddhists in our American history.  But a recent picture in a news article features Japanese robed zen married clergy,  a couple (women are nuns only in Japanese Buddhist tradition and not to hold priest roles like the men can opt for marriage or monk’s life)  in a zendo.  The writer asks “What’s an American Buddhist?  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/guest-voices/post/whats-an-american-buddhist/2012/06/17/gJQAJCQrjV_blog.html

Well, it’s a circular article first stripping away the Triple Jewel.  No Sangha, no ethnic trappings as they are not considered true or authentic enough to be Buddhist or relevant.  Then at the very end it says careful least 900 years later the adherents reject the efforts of the fabled American Buddhists who magically created a new world order of Buddhists here.

One way to look at this question is through the example of practice. When done correctly, what Buddhist meditators refer to as “sitting”–whether following the vipassana or zazen (or other) approaches to sitting meditation–does not rely on ceremonial chanting and recitations and actions that typically surround collective meditation sessions. This is not to say such ceremonial activities normally performed in an ancient or modern Eastern language are not useful or helpful. This is only to say they are not a necessity for the gradual expansion of consciousness that is the result of regular meditation. If one accepts this basic premise, which can be supported by the sutras attributed to the Buddha, then the conclusion that North Americans could conceivably develop their own Buddhist tradition some day is perfectly rational, if not probable.

This is based on opinion and not on reality, meditation has always been taught as a method but not the exclusive one, the first thing Buddhists do worldwide is to take the Triple Refuge and 5 Precepts.  The next thing they do is join in services that always recite sutras and repeat the Triple Jewel in refuge and action, join in volunteer work in the community and when it’s time and there is an opportunity they choose or not to sit on a cushion with the goal of being enlightened eventually.  This provides the stable framework necessary before one sits on the cushions.

2,555 years the core of Buddhist practice has always been formed from the Triple Jewel, being carried and protected by the Sangha who observes the Vinaya.  Also because people who come to Buddhism from new countries took the time to study Buddhism in it’s traditional form and upheld it, so the Buddhist culture developed as the Buddha instructed us Sangha who traveled to adapt to the countries conditions and culture with lots of variations in languages, practices and kept the core that is the Triple Jewel.  The problem in the USA and in many parts of the world is that there is no one identified unified culture.  We are a global society in the USA in reality, much of the myth the elitist create is not real and not reflecting the reality of the people in the USA. There is no one culture.  There can be no one form of Buddhism defining the United States and that is really ok.  The myth is there must be one form of Buddhism for each country, that’s the fakery being created by these elitists.

North American Buddhists are likely to create their own traditions and schools of thought, but they should do so with the awareness that they are forging a new Buddhist culture, not the ‘true’ Buddhist culture.

This is so strange that it is very insulting to North American Buddhists anywhere.  There is no need to forge a new Buddhist culture at all.  It does not work.  People in history have tried and when they diverge from the Triple Jewel they are not Buddhist at all, their movements become perverted and vanish.

The worst kind of approach a Westerner would take is to accept wholeheartedly without question any practice offered from any teacher without investigating and studying the history and knowing the standard teachings of Buddha and his disciples.  So ‘wholesale acceptance’ of Buddhism from the East is not likely the problem here.  It is lack of acceptance and adaptability. Just the last two.

Also they seem to have a need to make their own piss in the snow, a male pre-occupation.  That last bit is sadly the reason there is an effort by rags that call themselves the voice of American Buddhists or rather trying right now to lead the Buddhist movement with their money and media forming a horrific laughable council of teachers that fell on it’s face and nobody paid attention to it other than to point them out.  Led by the protestant versions of Japanese Buddhism and fringe trend setting teachers and all their writers who make them money… virtually ignoring the Sangha “”(they had one show Bhikkhu Bodhi who got rightfully upset with them and whom they posted as somehow he misunderstood..or he mis-heard them and gee wasn’t that embarrassing for him to explode on them during the conference type post on their blog) on whose back they cruelly stepped on to reach their goal as King of the Mountain, they virtually stood and pissed on the the living Jewels, all the while laughing in the faces of those who donate and sacrifice to make Buddhist temples and monasteries in the Americas.  This is soooo christian and not worthy of what is American today.

This sanitizing of Buddhism is wrong.  It is a symptom of lack of effort and study of Buddha dharma.  It’s rote repetition of wrong teachings based on fear of loss of their own leadership due to aging and somehow they must keep their flame alive and make a historical memory so their efforts don’t seem wasted to others.  The fact of the matter is the hippies are old and their start into Buddhism was filled with false intentions, most are failed monks and they are damn mad that people did not support them when they were innocents in robes, so they formed their careers by damning the robes and those that wear them.  All of them… look up the writers for yourself in the rags, tricycle, shambala sun, buddha dharma, the big 3 have featured all white… and all secular people claiming to be experts and leaders of Americans ‘cuz they failed to be monks.

They said they failed to be monks because they failed to get enough dana to do as they want to do (and become hits in their homelands).  Instead they were ignored perhaps bored in their robes, fearing poverty and they lacked the balls to stick it out they left their robes because there is no money in them.  Then these ex-monks damned repeatedly the very people who had virtuous roots that helped them succeed and go forth and being accepted.

Playing king of the mountain pushing off their competitors.  They promoted themselves as experts saying they have really represented Americans cuz they can have sex and create families… and they want their kids to be able to participate fully in their activities in the zendo cuz they don’t feel welcome anyplace but where they want to go and meditate while they ignore how bored their kids are waiting for them and let their kids run around doing things unsupervised while they zone out in hippie bliss or their mental version of it.

I’m sorry this is not how Americans do things, they do things by hard work, patience and sticking things out enduring because they know what really works. This fad by elitists is misleading and harmful and it does NOT meet the needs of common folk and it’s common folk that need proper Triple Jewels not fads.  They aren’t looking for trends while they work on the line or pack boxes into a truck, they are looking for a community that is stable, intelligent, active in the town, around the corner or even in the grocery…. but not at the expense of their own minds.  That’s where traditional Vinaya Buddhism excels, it’s stable it has lots of variety and enough well trained Sangha of monks and nuns to be able to endure and offer Buddha dharma as requested without all the bangs and whistles of slick rags or media blitz… and we will be long enduring whether the elites want to come to us while we are busy meeting the needs of the community where we live and reside in the Americas in and out of temples.  At my estimate we are well over 10,000 Sangha living in the USA alone and not all of us are ethnic imports from overseas but created, born and raised right here from every ethnic group that can be thought of here.  Here are some Iowas some Califnornians, some Nova Scotians, some Germans, some Chinese, a few Texans, some Burmese, and a majority of whom are Midwestern people as common as you can get and their shenanigans while enjoying traditional Buddhist offerings.