If I Ever Need a Reminder

Sunday, July 17th, 2011


This post is dedicated to B.L. on the occasion of his 22nd year of life (this lifetime anyway). May you continue to grow in joy, loving-kindness and wisdom, and helps others to do the same. May you be free from suffering, and one day realize the supreme peace of Nibbana.

The following is a slightly revised version of an old journal entry written on Friday, August 13th, 2010:

“If I ever need a reminder of how my being a Buddhist monk is somehow helping other people, or somehow making a positive difference, I don’t have to look very far to find it. I simply need to bring them to mind – T., C., P., S., D., H. and now B.. Seven amazing young people, bright, kind, open-minded and open-hearted, sensitive, intelligent, curious, and very endearing.

For about four hours today, I sat outside in the patio near the kitchen talking with D., S., P., and S. and P.’s big brother B., who I had the honor of finally meeting for the first time today. It was a lovely summer evening in Southern California, with a nice cool breeze, kittens playing down the way from us, and a dinner of instant noodles, bread, and cream cheeseĀ  (for them, not for me of course), courtesy of the kind laypeople at the monastery and joyfully received and eaten by the young people.

Among the topics that came up during our discussion: life in high school, peace as boring and the monastery as a “peaceful library”, the Buddha as the “most perfect human being”, the joys and challenges of life as a) a monk, and b) a young person, and also the possibility of enlightenment and liberation in this mad world of ours. It was a positive and wonderful gathering on a summer evening to remember, in the heart, as the five of us shared with and listened to each other.

How inspiring it is to be around these young people, and this seems to be just the beginning.”

~Guest post by ST



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