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  • SIT-A-LONG with Jundo - TO ALL SOLO PRACTITIONERS: Don't Be A Selfish Pratyeka-buddha

    Many times I hear folks say that they want to practice on their own, and not join in a Buddhist Community, because doing so gets in the way of their own practicing and sitting. They say that other people or having a teacher are a distraction, take up "my" precious time, are not a benefit to "me".

    Well, I say: Don't be a selfish sitter, a Pratyeka-buddha.

    There is an obligation, a face of the Bodhisattva Vow and taking refuge in Sangha, to support the Practice of others and not to be a Pratyeka-buddha. Ours is a Path beyond one's personal needs and wants. It is not a matter simply about what "I" want, what "I" need to do or learn, staring into my own navel.


    In Buddhism, one who attains enlightenment through his own efforts rather than by listening to the teachings of a buddha. The way of the self-enlightened buddha was criticized in Mahayana Buddhism, which rejects the path of self-enlightenment as too limiting and embraces the ideal of the Bodhisattva, who postpones final enlightenment to work for the rescue of others.
    It is much like family and children, who we tend to and spend time with ... whether we selfishly always want to or not, and whether or not we would rather run away. Community activity is vital. Sure, there is a place for "time alone" (whether in my "man cave" in the house or my "Bodhidharma cave" in the mountains), but in the end we have a duty to the community ... and to ourself ... to help and be together.

    Self and other are 'not two', and the community leaves us all stronger.

    This article was originally published in forum thread: SIT-A-LONG with Jundo - TO ALL SOLO PRACTITIONERS: Don't Be A Selfish Pratyeka-buddha started by Jundo View original post
    Comments 27 Comments
    1. Marcelo de Valnisio's Avatar
      Marcelo de Valnisio -
      Thank you.

    1. Dosho's Avatar
      Dosho -
      Thank you Jundo.

    1. Amelia's Avatar
      Amelia -
      Thank you, Jundo.
    1. Marla567's Avatar
      Marla567 -
      Thank you Jundo.

      Before joining a group of people I try to think about, if I want to get something or if I want to give something. Because I heard the statement, that a bodhisattva goes out in the world to give whereas most people go out in the world to get something. Most of the time it is both - giving and getting. When I feel, that I only want other people to make me happy, it often turns out that they can't really do this.

    1. Yugen's Avatar
      Yugen -
      Quote Originally Posted by adrianbkelly View Post
      I've really missed the support of this wonderful Sangha & could't help but smile when I logged in & saw lot's of familiar, friendly faces (as well as lots of new ones!) If you'll have me back, I'd love to start sitting with you again!
      Pull up a zafu and join us! It is our privilege to have you practicing with us! Thank you for your honest commentary. I too have had periods where I withdraw and want to sit alone. It allows me to "hide" and go to all sorts of peculiar places. When we sit together I feel all of your presence, and the practice belongs to all of us - we support one another. It has a nice feeling.

      Deep bows
    1. Kyonin's Avatar
      Kyonin -
      So true.

      I used to practice alone for many years and you spin all over until you settle with a Sangha.

      Sharing practice with the community is super important.

      Thanks for this teaching.


    1. Bobby's Avatar
      Bobby -