Friday, June 29, 2007

Everywhere I go, there's Buddha

All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think we become ~ Buddha
I went looking for long curtains and a curtain rod, but found Buddha instead.

It was a moment of serendipity. I just started reading Sandy Boucher's Opening the Lotus: A Women's Guide to Buddhism. I bought it several years ago but never got around to reading it, back when I was studying "Alternative Religions" at university - I went to a Catholic Canadian University and had the opportunity to really study Catholicism (and realize just why it didn't work for me), as well as many religions aside from those that subscribe to Christianity. I was raised Catholic, but became a Pagan when I was 14 (I think my parents thought it was a phase). Growing up, very little emphasis was placed on Mary's role in Sunday school and in church, making it seem very onesided to me. I think I was searching for something that delved a little deeper into the divine feminine aspect, something that was a little more relaxed, a little more celebratory and that didn't send you on a neverending guilt trip. Now I'm in no way against Christianity - I reconciled those feelings long ago, but every now and then I have issues with believers of the the strangers who come to my door and preach at me, look shocked and appalled when I say I'm a Pagan and then rant at me for my "wrong" beliefs, telling me that I'm going to hell (and yes this seems to happen more often than I would like). This falls into my "things that really annoy me" category - if I can accept these people despite our difference in religious opinions, why can't they do the same? I've read the New Testament...I know for a fact that it teaches acceptance. Did they skip this part?

Okay, so anyway...this is was not supposed to be a rant, it was supposed to be about how I'm reading this book on Buddhism. Lately it seems that Buddhism is just jumping out at me - everywhere I go, there's Buddha (sounds like a book title). It made me realize that I really don't know as much about it as I thought and that maybe now is the time to read up on it. I actually own a few books on Buddhism, but just couldn't get into reading them (I'm a firm believer that no book will ever be read before it's time - if I can't get into the book, I set it down. Eventually, I come back to it a week, a month or 6 years...and suddenly I can't put it down. It's just the right time in my life for me to read that particular book). And though I don't forsee me becoming a Buddhist, there are many aspects of it that I can identify with. I see many links to Paganism in Buddhist teachings (and I see many links to Paganism in Christian teachings - it's in the basic principles).

But I thought it was interesting that I had just picked this book back up and suddenly, I come across Buddha sitting on a shelf at a local store. And just having him in my hallway, his little fountain bubbling, there is a feeling of calm settling into my house. I really like that.

1 comment:

shula said...

Everybody needs a buddha, that's for sure.