[Buddha-l] A lecture by Richard Gombrich

Randall Jones randall.bernard.jones at gmail.com
Fri Nov 11 18:55:44 MST 2011

Thank you, Joanna, for this link to a very worthwhile read. I found 
myself agreeing with most of the points made.

I was just revisiting the who-is-a-Buddhist discussion in my mind 
yesterday and remembering years ago when I was wondering if I was a 
"real Buddhist." I made an appointment with a Thai monk at the Thai 
Temple just outside New York and we talked about this. I got the 
feeling that he thought the question was little silly, but even so, 
he told me that usually a few things happened - talking about the 
dharma with a Buddhist teacher/monk, taking refuge, sitting together. 
(He also shared a few fascinating stories about some renowned western 
teachers who had ordained in Thailand.) On the train ride back into 
the city I realized that we had done those things he described as how 
one usually became Buddhist. I was rather surprised and also amused 
at how natural, organic, it had been and how little ritualistic. The 
monk that I talked with also offered to sponsor my ordination in 
Bangkok where I was shortly traveling, but I decided against that.

I share this because my experience was so different from what 
Gombrich relates. Perhaps the Thai temple did not have a big outreach 
program, but certainly they were open to non-Thais, tfluent in 
English, and more than ready to talk and make one feel welcome - and 
even feel a real Buddhist.


At 06:49 PM 11/11/2011, Jo wrote:
>Recently the question, who (or what?) is a Buddhist was discussed here.
>Gombrich has some provocative and, IMHO, worthwhile ideas to offer on the
>To access page 2, do not use the Next link-go back to the top of the page
>and click on Page2, etc.
>buddha-l mailing list
>buddha-l at mailman.swcp.com

More information about the buddha-l mailing list