So I was doing this chanting thing that Jason Jarrett turned me onto. For the first time in 30 years, I was truly starting to feel contentment, happiness even, perhaps I’d go so far as to say joy, in all things. But the chanting felt a bit odd. I think my wife found it hokey and I believe it is important in marriage that the couple be eye to eye on religious and spiritual stuff. Plus as I looked into the practice of Buddhism more and read more about stuff revolving around the alter it began to feel a little like some of those things that I find distasteful about particular organized religions. I guess the biggest killer for me was not finding support for the Buddhism of Nichiren Daishonin in Knoxville. There’s a Buddhist temple on Dutchtown Road but they don’t speak English. The language barrier didn’t stop me from going as much as it being a different practice than what Jason Jarrett introduced me to. I dropped in on another place in Knoxville near Homberg Place which was a different practice than either Nichiren or the one on Dutchtown and they just looked at me like, "who’s the old guy?" Despite the sign that read "All welcome" I did not feel welcome. Apparently there is a Nichiren youth organization in Knoxville but I don’t really want the old guy experience again.
So I quit chanting. Then everything went to shit. Coincidence? Probably. There’s some karma crap to be considered too. I was working very hard at removing negativity in my life so the response karmicly speaking was an abundance of negativity was drawn to me. The happier I felt, the greater the onslaught of crap that seemed to be directed at me. There was some Murph stuff too. If you don’t know Murph, you’ll have to buy me a beer and I’ll tell you about him sometime. The flat tire yesterday was a Murph moment. I produced a deluge of negativity and in response I was punished with a flat tire. A wake up call of sorts.
So, I’ll continue listening to A Buddhist Podcast because it is truly one of the best produced podcasts I regularly enjoy. I may even keep chanting if for any reason, for my children. It is so nice when Evan or Amy spontaneously erupt in chant. I believe it is very good for them. But I think my experiment in Buddhism is a bust.