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Messages - Chaz

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Danger Zone / Re: Forgiving the Views of others.
« on: September 26, 2020, 04:26:51 PM »
When I blame the murderer I keep the world safer in the conventional sense, but when hate comes into my heart instead of compassion for how lost he is, then I become lost with him.

Great stuff!

This sentence really stood out for me.^^^

It's really true.  It speaks to me of the conceited "other-ing" we tend to do.  We take the view that the criminal is something other than ourself.  Then we take a judgemental view that the criminal.  It's interesting to note that this judgement generally does not apply to ourself and is then used to put our self in a better light.  "He is a murderer.  He is bad.  I am not a murderer.  I am good.". It's easy to do and doesnt require any sort of critical thinking.

In addition, we refuse to try to understand and thereby gain some wisdom.  We don't want to look at causes and contitions with a long, compassionate view of rehabilitation and ending aberant behavior..  We want to assign blame, pass judgement and punish.

That's not the end.  We don't let go.  We cling to the judgement we make and this is where the suffering comes in.  This is where we get lost.

Take Michael Vick, the former NFL quarterback who was jailed for dog fighting.  He was released in 2009 and there are people who think that Vick should still be in prison and never released.  They can be pretty vocal.  They cling to a judgement.  They suffer as a result.

And so it goes ....

Bother / Amenephistus Plese Read
« on: September 16, 2020, 03:38:30 AM »
There was a problem and your account was removed.

My bad.

Please open another account.

Meditation / Thoughts about a practice group
« on: September 16, 2020, 12:13:34 AM »
Since moving to South Carolina 3 years ago, I've been without a sangha for group practice.  Back in Denver they were commonplace - Zen, Shambhala, various Tibetan groups and so on offered programs that were compatible (hate to use that term) with my main practice.  Here, not so much.  There are a few groups nearby but for one reason or another, don't offer a practice container I'd be comfortable in.

I've been considering taking steps toward starting a practice group myself.

Teaching meditation presents a challenge.  I've been practicing Shamatha/Vipassna for 15 years.  I guess after all that time I could get a beginner started.  The problem I face is that in my practice lineage you have to have completed Ngondro and have the guru's permission/blessing after specific training.  Those prelims aren't gonna happen.  So if I abide by tradition, a local practice group ain't gonna happen unless somebody else does it and I doubt that will happen any time soon.

So, do I break with tradition and move ahead or wait.   Is it better to ask forgiveness than permission?

It may seem to be a simple thing, but believe me it is not.

Bother / Re: Ok, here's what happened.
« on: September 15, 2020, 07:17:09 PM »
Well....I'm sad to see that, If you need anything I can help with, let me know in PM's and I will attempt to assist.

Anemephistus - I'm really glad to see you're back. 

Thanks for the offer of assistance, but everything's pretty much covered for now.

One thing you can do is start something!  Post a topic and lets talk!

Meditation / Restricted Practices
« on: September 02, 2020, 05:26:17 AM »
In the Buddhist world the are what's called Restricted Practice.  Such practice is undertaken with the permission of a teacher empowered guide the practitioner.  Discussion of such practice is usually limited to the the practice community. 

You may ask questions about these practices, but answers may not be forthcoming.  Please respect this.  It may also be that there is no one who can answer the question

If you seek information on resyricted practice we can help you find the answers.

Bother / Re: Introductions
« on: September 02, 2020, 01:19:10 AM »
I suppose that seeing this is a new site, I think I should into myself.

I'm Chaz.  I was a member of the old site for a few years, and was a Global Moderator there.  When we set up this new site, I was made an Administrator, which by default includes global moderation.

I live in South Carolina near Charlotte, NC.

I practice in the Kagyu lineage, but have had considerable exposure to the Shambhala lineage via study, practice and aquaintance including a number of people who formally practiced under Chogyam Trungpa's guidance.  I choose to never reveal the identity of my root guru.

Bother / Introductions
« on: September 02, 2020, 01:04:06 AM »
No bother, but if you're new, introduce yourself!!

Secular Buddhism / Thoughts about Secular Buddhism Discussion
« on: September 01, 2020, 10:06:41 PM »
I can say that Secular Buddhist practice is a "tradition" at least in the strict sense.   Another generation of practice is needed if you ask me.

That said .....

Secular Buddhism discussions tend to get a little heated.  This seems to happen most often where the discussion involves comparison/contrast language.  So, how about we discuss secular practice on it's own merits and leave other traditions out of it?

Danger Zone / A few notes about the Danger Zone
« on: September 01, 2020, 04:03:45 PM »
Ok, I get it.  I like a vigorous discussion of controversial issues as much as the next guy or gal.

And yes, this is FREE Sangha.

Free, in this context, doesn't mean complete, and unbridled freedom to post whatever you want and that also applies to the "DZ".  Some controversial topics are, well, just too controversial for the kind of dicussion we want see.

A few rules of thumb to consider.

Political topics, especially US politics, might be best served elsewhere.

Diet discussions, especially vegetarianism, always seem to go south within a few posts.  Such subjects will be monitored closely and locked/deleted as deemed necessary.

Scandals should be treated gently.  Let's discuss them like the reasonable adults we hopefully are.

Issues such as the Dorje Shugden controversy, the 2 Karmapas and so on should be discussed in a measured manner.  Not everyone is a Kagyu or enthralled by the Dalai Lama.

Bother / Ok, here's what happened.
« on: September 01, 2020, 03:42:41 PM »
For those former members, returning to the warm embrace of Free Sangha, here's what happened.

Anyone who's been on FS for a while will recall that our old server was spotty in it's performance.  Sometimes it would work great and other times, well, not so much.  These were due to issues that, sadly, were beyond our control.

A couple weeks ago the server tanked on us, making the website impossible to access.  Wonky and I discussed the issues and decide the best course to take was to create a new web sites and import the old database, including your accounts, and legacy data containing threads and so on.  Well, that import wasn't going so good, so rather than fight with it, and in light of the amount of traffic we've had, we decided to reopen the site with a fresh, clean database.

So, here we are.

While the site is functional, there are a few wrinkles to iron out, mainly in the area of spam.

A new TOS is being prepared and will be posted soon.

Mad Props to Wonky Badger for stepping up to help with the transition.

Welcome back!

Stuff / Code of Conduct
« on: September 01, 2020, 12:34:12 AM »
Code of Conduct, Rules of the Road, etc.

1.)  These rules are interpreted by the mod/admin team.  If there is any uncertainty contact them.

2.) If there are any issues with interpreting the rules, please refer to Rule 1

3.) Keep It Civil

4.) Keep it Clean

5.) Do not badmouth other traditions, teachers, other forums, moderators, admins or anyone else.

7.)  No meta discussion

8.) No questions of a medical nature. No medical advice/referrals

10.)  Do not post private communication from another person without their permission

11.)  We do not care about Dorje Shugden

12.)  Try to not proselytize

13.) Do we really need to post a rule about trolling?

14.) Don't post any For Sale items.  The same applies for free offers.

15.) This really isn't a place for politics, either

16.) Do not make posts that endorse or promote racism, homophobia, transphobia and misogyny

16.) It is not ok to call someone a Nazi.

17.)  All topics are welcome, but controversial topics including Doje Shugden, abuse scandals, the 2 Karmapas, diet, and so on will be monitored closely and closed/deleted if necessary.

18.)  We advise that not all terminology is universally acceptable.  For example, the term H-Word.  Find another word.

Stuff / Welcome Back!
« on: September 01, 2020, 12:33:06 AM »
If you're a new member who was a member of the old FreeSangha, welcome!  We're glad you're back.

Things are pretty much the same, but the old s=data including your account didn't make the move.

It's our hope that the new site will be better than the old one.

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