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  1. #1
    Senior Member Clark's Avatar
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    No need to participate

    Today during Zazenkai a major cloud drifted into view.

    I found myself drifting off onto a tangent about religion. The frustration of my sister's fundamentalism. The past ghosts of growing up in my parent's church. Their country club attitude towards Christianity. My wife's clinging to the idea that some how some way, her cherry picking Catholicism will match what the priests are actually advocating. The list goes on, you get the idea. Then.. "oh thinking" Drop it. Back to the blue sky. As I did I felt a physical shaking in my body as a whole bunch of resentment, judgment, resistance and other things I have no name for, that I have been clinging to on these topics, just also drifted right out of me.

    After sitting it came to me. There is nothing to do with all this. It has no meaning other than what I give it. There is nothing to fight. Just be myself, do my thing. I don't have to have an opinion on these things. I don't have to do anything about these things. Just be

    The clear blue sky is a little clearer tonight or is it" just me".

    Gassho


    C

  2. #2
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Wow, Clark that is great, happy for you!!! This is something that I really struggle with, since my own family and in-laws are **extreme** fundamental Christian as well. This is encouraging to continue along with the practice, and just let things go. No matter what we say or do, these ppl will probably always be the way they are, we can either fight that, or go on with life, and just let life be as it is.

    Gassho,
    Treena

  3. #3
    Thank you, Clark.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Clark View Post
    It has no meaning other than what I give it.
    Nice Clark, the light bulb of blue sky moment.

    Gassho
    Shingen
    倫道 真現

    As a trainee priest, please take any commentary by me on matters of the Dharma with a pinch of salt.

  5. #5
    If interesting to you, Clark, many folks here are dealing with relatives or friends and our childhood religions, and folks who might not understand. Here is an example of such discussion ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...al-of-Buddhism

    It is an important topic that many folks deal with. My general rule of thumb is ...

    I usually suggest to our Sangha members that they do not try to persuade anyone of the "Rightness of Zen Buddhism" or the like. On the other hand, if someone asks ... just speak about what this Way is in one's own life, and answer their questions as best one can. Do not force or lure anyone to a Zen sitting ... but, on the other hand, bring them if they express an interest.

    Also, do not try to convince friends or relatives about Buddhist Practice. Instead, I suggest you just be with them as a good, caring, gentle friend or relative ... son or daughter, spouse or parent ... and they will get the point. In fact, if they see a change in you from before ... if they see that you have, in fact, become a more caring, gentle, whole, content person than who they knew before ...

    ... they will get the message more than anything that can be said in words.
    Even go to church with them from time to time if it makes your wife or sister happy!

    Gassho, J
    Last edited by Jundo; 08-19-2013 at 04:14 AM.
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  6. #6
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    If interesting to you, Clark, many folks here are dealing with relatives or friends and our childhood religions, and folks who might not understand. Here is an example of such discussion ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...al-of-Buddhism

    It is an important topic that many folks deal with. My general rule of thumb is ...



    Even go to church with them from time to time if it makes your wife or sister happy!

    Gassho, J
    Thank you, Jundo, much needed advice for me, need to read this every day

    gassho,
    Treena

  7. #7
    Senior Member Clark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jundo View Post
    If interesting to you, Clark, many folks here are dealing with relatives or friends and our childhood religions, and folks who might not understand. Here is an example of such discussion ...

    http://www.treeleaf.org/forums/showt...al-of-Buddhism

    It is an important topic that many folks deal with. My general rule of thumb is ...



    Even go to church with them from time to time if it makes your wife or sister happy!

    Gassho, J

    Thanks for your concern and posting that. I will read that entire thread. I wholeheartedly agree with and understand your point. I have no intention of being a Buddhapest ; that wasn't the real jist or intention of my "realization". The ah so moment wasn't abotu me being "right". I think Shingen understood. The issue isn't with them, the issue is all about me and MY clinging to the idea that things should somehow be different. Conversely I am not attached to them accepting, not accepting my views.

    I actually often do go to church with my wife at times, because I just want to be there to support her choices. I don't have to agree with it. Without publicly bashing any one religious choice here, my sister is in a whole other league of her own. She is in a cult and there is no way I am exposing my kids to that. I just have to let that go.

    Interestingly my wife came home very upset after her experience at church last week and the priests comments about certain social issues which she did NOT agree with, and she was crying and asked me if we could just find a Buddhist Temple to go to. I must be radiating inner peace already ( Zen Bragging) She hasn't been unsupportive of my Zen.

    Thanks Shingen and Treena for your comments too!

  8. #8
    Senior Member Joyo's Avatar
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    my sister is in a whole other league of her own. She is in a cult and there is no way I am exposing my kids to that. I just have to let that go.

    I understand that all too well, Clark. My in-laws are also pastor's of a church that is viewed as a cult, even other Christians in our small town recognize it as such. My husband and i went there for 8 years, it was a very dark and difficult time for me. There was much pressure ( manipulation and use of extreme anger, threats of going to hell, etc. etc.) to try and get us to conform. In the end, we left because we had our first son and we realized we just could not raise him in this way.

    It is still very difficult for me to visit my in-laws house for holidays, there's a lot of passive-aggressive pressure that my mil puts on me, especially, to try and conform to her ways and my fil just lashes out in anger my kids, or else he completely iqnores me. I've started doing a metta for my parents (also very religious and not happy at all that I've quit going to church) and my in-laws every morning. I'm not totally free from the hurt, but it is getting better as I continue to work on it. Our greatest teachers can be those that do not treat us well, or that disagree with us--or so, I keep on being told

    Gassho,
    Treena

  9. #9
    That is awesome man!

    Gassho,

    Risho

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Clark View Post
    The issue isn't with them, the issue is all about me and MY clinging to the idea that things should somehow be different. Conversely I am not attached to them accepting, not accepting my views.
    Yes, this is wise. There may be a situation in life that we do not like and find upsetting. Sometimes we can change the situation, sometimes we cannot.

    But it is vital to be re-minded in our Way that the situation is one thing, our reaction between the ears is another. The situation is just the situation, but all we feel about the situation is within us. Even if we cannot change the outside, which just is what it is, we can change how we are inside and how we react. Inside and outside are not two.

    Gassho, Jundo
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

  11. #11
    Senior Member Clark's Avatar
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    Thanks so much everyone for the kind suggestions, comments and encouragement. I am content to release the need to have any opinions thoughts negativity positivity about all this.

    It simply not a game I am playing anymore. The path is mine to walk. This one the one under my feet is mine to tread.

    Gassho C

  12. #12
    Hello, my friends.

    I live the same situation with my wife. It is good to read your wise words. Thank you.

    Gassho.

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