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3 years ago  ::  Aug 04, 2011 - 6:03PM #1
dinnerwithdelores
Posts: 5
Hi. For many years - most of my life - I have been trying to find the "thing" (belief/idea/deity) that made sense to me and feels like the right path. I have explored Wicca, Catholocism, Bahai, Baptist Christian, and Quaker. There are parts of each of these that make sense, but none of them make total sense to me or really feel "right".

In the course of all of this I would run across ideas from Buddhism, and those usually struck a chord with me. However, being in a conservative Christian family that has already shunned and tormented one Buddhist family member, I did not feel this would be a good fit.

After several years of learning and reading, and a lot of growing up on my part, I have decided to embrace what I feel to be correct, which is Buddhism.

I have a few questions though, as there is no local Buddhist community or group that I can join (the closest is more than an hour a way, which is not possible for me right now).

  1. Tips/ideas on meditation, particularly, how do you know you're doing it right, with right being defined as "effectively"?
  2. What are the major Buddhist holidays, how essential are they (ie Christmas versus Maundy Thursday), and what do most people do to celebrate?
  3. Why did you (whomever choses to answer) decide Buddhism is the right path for you, and what brought you to it?

Thank you so much for your help.
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3 years ago  ::  Aug 07, 2011 - 11:37PM #2
RenGalskap
Posts: 1,420

Aug 4, 2011 -- 6:03PM, dinnerwithdelores wrote:

Tips/ideas on meditation, particularly, how do you know you're doing it right, with right being defined as "effectively"?


If you are having trouble keeping your mind focused, you are doing it correctly, defined as effectively.

Aug 4, 2011 -- 6:03PM, dinnerwithdelores wrote:

What are the major Buddhist holidays, how essential are they (ie Christmas versus Maundy Thursday), and what do most people do to celebrate?


Holidays aren't important to me. A lot of Buddhists celebrate Vesak, and a lot don't. Mostly, Buddhists celebrate the local culturally significant holidays.

Aug 4, 2011 -- 6:03PM, dinnerwithdelores wrote:

Why did you (whomever choses to answer) decide Buddhism is the right path for you, and what brought you to it?


It's no longer important to me to have a reason why Buddhism is right for me. It's just what I do.

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 08, 2011 - 11:56AM #3
dinnerwithdelores
Posts: 5

Thank you so much for taking the time to respond. I had planned on continuing to celebrate the holidays that we have always celebrated, ie Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. To be honest, when I was growing up I didn't know Christmas and Easter were religious holidays! I learned as a teenager that they were supposed to be Christian holidays. So we will continue to celebrate our family traditions on those days as I did as a child. (I sincerely doubt that even 85 % of the people who celebrate those holidays, do it for religious reasons.)


I definately have trouble keeping my mind focused, so I am glad to learn that means I'm doing it right! I tend to want to follow the thoughts that come up in my mind but I guess I don't understand the distinction between doing that, meditatively, and day dreaming. That may sound stupid but that's what I'm finding.


Thank you again for your help!

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3 years ago  ::  Aug 09, 2011 - 5:55PM #4
RenGalskap
Posts: 1,420
Almost everyone has the experience of losing their focus and daydreaming, bring the mind back to meditation, losing it, regaining it, and so on. The effort to refocus the mind is important, but the fact that you have to refocus the mind frequently is not "wrong".

I hope that's helpful. :-)
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3 years ago  ::  Aug 11, 2011 - 7:06AM #5
dinnerwithdelores
Posts: 5

Very much so, thank you!

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