Great Comforting Thoughts:
"The fool who is aware of his foolishness is at least wise to that extent..." (---from the Dhammapada, verse 63)
or, what appears to be very similar,
"Blessed are they who know their spiritual poverty, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven." (---the very first words of the Sermon on the Mount)
Well, Hello, and welcome to my first blog, typed on the first computer I've ever owned. (It's ironic that I haven't owned such a luxurious, magical gadget until long after becoming a Buddhist monk and "renouncing the world.") The main purpose of this blog is to record a public journal, discussing the feelings that occur to someone who essentially lived in a cave for years and years and is now living in the strange world of America, as well as reflections, more or less philosophical, that are too short or too personal to be articles on the adjoining website, plus occasionally too politically incorrect to say to someone's face at a public talk. Much of what will be discussed will be insights that arose, and had to arise, only after leaving a spiritual hermitage and entering an American city (Bellingham, WA). For those of you who don't know me, some personal information is available on the website (nippapanca.org), and of course anyone reading this journal will probably get to know me pretty well if they are so inclined.
The two quotes which begin this blog represent thoughts that have been great comforts to me over the years as I tried to be a good monk and cultivate wisdom. I have to rely on them less and less, but they still are a consolation sometimes. Nowadays the Great Comforting Thoughts tend to be more like, "Everything happens the way it's supposed to happen," "Om," and "Love is acceptance." That last one especially is taking me far in life.
This first entry is like a first day at school: No serious work involved, just settling in. Future entries will often, but not always, be meatier, and I hope sometimes controversial. I like a little controversy every now and then. The trick is to be controversial without callously insulting anybody. My sincere blessings are upon all of you, whether you read this or not.