illustration (attribution, if any possible, is at the end of the article)
8 original contributions in August, including a review of 2 years of dāna -supported teachings:
• Shopping the Dharma
• Why might Generosity be the first Perfected Quality?
• Not giving is harming
• Anniversary and review (a more 'personal' post)
• Intention to treat
• Intention as cause?
August – September – October
3 original contributions in September:
gplus.wallez.name/Cre8wBADavF (in the secret.dharma.house collection)
• Context, context, context…
• Eight worldly winds
August – September – October
Due to administrative delays in relation to #dharmahouse , more free time than anticipated, so 6 original contributions in October:
• Criticising wrong views is useful… but mislabelling the target doesn't help!
• The path is in saṃsāra… — demystifying the notion of 'mystical' insight
• Being mindful? Lists!
• All these sūtras contradict one another!
• Selfish non-violence?
• The "next generation" of the next generation of the next generation… or us, here and now!
Right after the anniversary and review post, an ex-student asked « Are you reviewing your plan to be a buddhist teacher with so little to support you? »
Given the context, the way the question was phrased suggested I should stop teaching (based on a "appeal to majority" fallacy maybe, to 'confirm' the ex-student's decision to leave). It certainly did not sound like "How will you overcome adversity and renew your approach, to make it work / live?"
The question seemed very biased though, cherry-picking what "support" is! It seemed to focus solely on the lack of financial supporters, and to forget the other forms of support (which are in abundance) like "thank you" messages or the constant increase in people asking to be notified… "More and more people asking for notification" is not exactly telling me to stop! There's plenty of support and encouragement! The feedback taken in its entirety (rather than with a bias) tells me to find another way to fund the teachings, but not to stop teaching! To adapt is the middle way between stubbornness and quitting.
« Patient endurance: the foremost austerity. » — Dhp 184
So… my contributions on g+ still include not only original content but also interactions and moderation in g+ communities, comments in threads (some have been particularly epic recently) and the requested one-to-one guidances!
More people asked for notifications when original content is posted, now reaching a total of 300.
Out of 12 regular financial supporters up to the anniversary, 5 chose to continue their dāna practice. I'm happy these people realised that dāna is also for one's own cultivation, and that the benefit for others is not a 'separate' question: seeing the virtuous circle of mutual benefit from sharing, and realising the absence of separate self, are very promising signs with regards to these practitioners!
Previous monthly summaries: plus.google.com/collection/Uh5H2
image: Qiao Seng