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Thursday, 17 January 2013

A year on

It is now well over a year since I began to practice Tantra and Yoga. The journey has been interesting in all sorts of unexpected ways.

The practice of Yoga has had a surprisingly magnetic effect in that it has drawn other things to it. My diet is different these days due to both the Yoga and the Salmonella poisoning I had in May of last year. My diet has remained Flexitarian with what seems at times an awful lot of fruit and veggies...most of them raw.

 The alcohol consumption is still way down from what it was before I met Selina and even  from just before I began to practice Yoga.

My exercise is way up. I'm exercising most days now. Feels odd if I don't, I suspect I have an addiction.

My practice of Metta has deepened. I'm not sure if this is entirely due to the Yoga, but I do know from past experience that fitness and Metta are a natural pairing. Yoga helps the entry into meditation. I suspect there is the connection between fitness and meditation happening. Because my body is healthier the mind has less problems with becoming calm and enjoying the meditation...there is less background noise from the body to distract it.

The quality of my life is better. In large part I think to a change in attitude. Yoga helps chill things out. That and the proximity of death in May certainly produced a change in approach to all manner of matters I used to consider worthy of getting all het up about and the vast majority of them aren't worthy of much at all.

I have reached a point where Yoga is a much a part of me as my meditation is. I like what it has and continues to do to my body. I also like self identifying as a Yogi very much. In the coming year I will read the Yoga Sutra's and explore other Yogic and Tantric texts.

Wonderful time to be alive.

Monday, 7 January 2013

A Reconciliation...of sorts

About 15 months ago I broke from Theravada Buddhism and engaged Tantra. At that time you may remember me giving a lot of "frank and honest opinions" and engaging in a lot of bridge burning. The anger has ebbed, the opinions have not.

I have been writing a book on Tantra using Metta as a centrepiece of the practice. Perhaps because it is what I am most familiar with, I have decided to use Theravadin teachings and meditations in this Tantra. Actually it's more of a porridge of traditions and teachings with Avalokiteshvara - Kwan Yin,  Sacred Sex and Yoga as well as what could be called The Cult of the Physical being very much central to the Tantra.

Whatever labels we may want to use, I have re-examined what I was so angry with. The teachings are valid. The ego's and politics of Theravada culture are not. My basic gripe with the teachings remain....they don't go far enough. There is an entire aspect of the practitioner that is wilfully ignored in traditional Theravada. There is a refusal to accept that a heart attack or Type 2 diabetes is going to put a serious kink in your ability to practice.

Perhaps  because in Australia the teaching is dominated by celibate monastics family life is devalued as an avenue of Dhamma. Not unlike my little boy deciding he doesn't like asparagas when he's never tried it. Those most dismissive of family life as Dharma are those with the least experience of it.

Once I re-read the teachings on meditation in Theravada with a years break from the bullshit I saw much that is valid. I believe that all the elements in the Tantra Dharma I practice and teach are compatible with and workable within a Theravadin context.

What I will NEVER return to is the real world groups with their penchant for politics. What I will be doing is pursuing and developing Theravada Tantra.