Saturday, May 15, 2010
For awhile now, I've been interested in the ways sangha is manifesting or not manifesting in the 21st century. In addition to the varieties of online activities which may or may not be "sanghas" (or Buddhist communities), I've noticed a number of bloggers living in areas where there isn't much in the way of established Buddhism starting their own sanghas. Last month, Kyle over at Reformed Buddhist started up a Zen group in his Virgina hometown. And this morning, I ran across this post from Jordan, who is stationed over in Okinawa, Japan, and trying to start a group as well. I've seen others doing similar things, including members of my own home sangha, who have started up sitting groups on the side.
It's an interesting experiment, isn't it? There's a great democratic spirit in all this, and clearly an intention to fill a gap being called to be filled.
I also wonder about leadership issues, training in working with group dynamics, messages being given about Buddha's teachings. Things can get messy fast if you don't have some grounded people around helping to navigate everything.
What do you think about these groups popping up? Is this a sign of the future of practice? A temporary stepping stone to something else? A road to trouble?
Posted by Nathan at 9:34 AM