Can We Trust the Teachings if a Teacher Engages in Sexual Misconduct, Difference Between Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism and more… (Q&A Session November’19)
Questions answered during our Q&A session:
3:04 I read about the sexual misconduct by Culadasa and since I have been following his practice for some time and sort of thought of him as almost enlightened, I find it hard to trust his path now. How do you deal with it? Also, he claimed that when reaching stage ten you are completely free of the 5 hindrances in meditation and also in daily life. So, this is either wrong or he never reached stage 10? Can a teaching and the teacher be separated, or does the teaching suffer because of the teacher’s behavior?
40:51 I’ve been reading aloud the Confession to the 35 Buddhas. It says to recite the Sutra three times if you are able. Is it ok to recite it once if I’m tired? And also, who are these Buddhas in the families? Like, the Tathagata, the Omniscient One of the Playful Light of the Lotus? They have such puzzling but interesting names.
45:31 I sometimes worry about being “too equanimous” towards my family and friends. Is there such a thing? What’s the right balance between showing that I care for them, and avoiding emotional entanglements? I haven’t received any complaints (yet) about being “emotionally detached,” but this issue is always on my mind.
52:05 Would you explain differences between Theravada and Mahayana, and what tradition you meditated in when you were a nun?
1:02:59 I’m interested in exploring metta, from a self-serving, emotional or thought perspective or is it genuine metta? Sometimes I’m watching a movie or even a YouTube song and a joyful tear comes across and it seems to follow a really nice day at work. And I question where it comes from… is it true-self compassion or some kind of self-serving ego-based emotion. At times I think my work is altruistic and at the same time wonder if it’s really just self-serving?
1:10:01 I find practicing dharma as a householder to be very difficult but do believe it can be done and is the principle way to achieve happiness. For years however, my basic practice and meditation has been very inconsistent and I find myself overwhelmed with the amount of teachings and different practices. Can you recommend some of the essential things you think one must practice/do daily to progress on the path? For example- meditation, reading specific passages, etc. and how to you maintain this enthusiasm to practice amidst daily life struggles?