Monday, April 27, 2009

the Hokie Pokie and other Grand Adventures

It's been awhile friends since I've checked in....

1. no longer at Tibetan Aid Project/Nyingma Institute (sigh of relief)
2. "calmly" awaiting Program Director position at Girl Scout Camp Deerlake in Lake Tahoe
3. trudging through a month or so more at the tennis center reading as much as possible to stay entertained/informed
4. training the dog (you can so teach an old dog new tricks and don't let anyone tell you any different!)
5. reconnecting with an old friend, Lacy and getting to explore being out, "out", single and legal in DFW :)

Thoughts and Tidbits:
After a few weeks away from the Nyingma Institute and my vegetarian Buddhist ways it has become apparent that I was not cut out for the purely contemplative life. It's interesting how high on that pedestal I held all things Buddhist. It actually surprised me how unrealistic I'd been in relation to another spiritual tradition considering how cynical I'd become about my own. I guess the two aren't mutually exclusive though since I was probably particularly piqued to find something entirely non-Christian to explore. What's even more surprising is that the Institute has a way of manipulating you into losing track of that extremely useful voice inside your head that keeps you grounded and in communication with yourself, then manages to make you feel guilty about feeling miserable and not wanting to stay that way. I guess that losing track meant that I was on track from a Buddhist perspective, deconstructing the self in order to find Truth and authentic experience. Although I agree that there are some parts of myself that are limiting and ultimately unhealthy I also know that my general contentment comes in the shape of awareness about my needs and my ability to meet them. I used to think that Buddhism had it all right but I'm starting to realize that the interconnected communal core I fell in love with is actually more of a fringe perspective and the real focus is on isolation, meditation, introverted contemplation and a lack of social connection. In the end I respect that it works for some people and I will still continue to employ meditation, yoga and awareness of the present moment but you will probably never see me go monastic again :)

In other news, I'm exploring the Emergent Church for it's emphasis on intellectual exploration, inclusion, community and faith. I still don't have a Christian stamp on my forehead but I am intrigued by this faith-based experiment with academic exploration, ecotheology, diversity, and interreligious dialogue. Note to self, beware of the pedestal!

One down side to being away from TAP? the internet at work sucks and I haven't been keeping up with my girl Rachel Maddow or my other news sources. I'm feeling extremely out-of-touch and in need of a week to plug back in. Luckily, I don't work when it rains since apparently people don't like sopping tennis so I've got at least a few days of downpour to explore and reconnect. Exciting result? More fascinating and educational updates from me your friendly neighborhood Spiderman. How awesome would it be if Spiderman dropped by and saved the world through insightful exposes on all things religious, political, educational etc.

And that's what it's all about!

P.S. I spent all weekend at the Denton Arts & Jazz Fest and was serenaded by the melodious and intoxicating jams of a local Grammy Award-winning Polka Band called Brave Combo and they most definitely played the Hokie Pokie. My life is now complete :)

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