Hopefully, ‘secular Buddhism’ will prosper in the world, I believe it can. However, in Auckland as presumably elsewhere, we seem to have no formal structure, practices, or leaders, nor perhaps any consensus views, aims, or philosophy. How therefore might we create a sense of coherence, even direction?
I offer the following simple thoughts as a means to focus our participation in building a new community of Buddhists, by asking the question: why would we come together as a group and therefore what might we do when we meet?
I came up with four answers: for Buddhism, for meditation & ethical practice, and for people; then realised, of course, these are essentially the ‘three jewels’ of classical Buddhism (not incidentally my favourite metaphor). So perhaps we may meet to:
- Discuss and deepen our understanding of the Buddhist insight, and in particular its secular expression
- Meditate, share our experiences of meditation and perhaps learn more
- Explore how to live ethically (perhaps in the light of Buddhist philosophy)
- Spend time with like-minded people; perhaps even be inspired by them!
I think we could happily come along for any one of these alone. How we might do all this remains to be discovered….