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By Sakyong Mipham, Chögyam Trungpa

During this smooth non secular vintage, the Tibetan meditation grasp Chögyam Trungpa highlights the most typical pitfall to which each and every aspirant at the religious direction falls prey: what he calls religious materialism. The common tendency, he exhibits, is to work out spirituality as a strategy of self-improvement—the impulse to improve and refine the ego while the ego is, by way of nature, primarily empty. "The challenge is that ego can convert whatever to its personal use," he acknowledged, "even spirituality." His incisive, compassionate teachings serve to wake us up from this trick all of us play on ourselves, and to supply us a much brighter truth: the genuine and joyous liberation that necessarily contains letting move of the self instead of operating to enhance it. it's a message that has resonated with scholars for almost thirty years, and is still clean as ever this present day. This re-creation features a foreword via Chögyam Trungpa's son and lineage holder, Sakyong Mipham.

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These two provinces have comparatively high numbers of mae chiis and, as mentioned above, there are some well-known female dhamma and meditation teachers from this region. In 1997 there were about 50 mae chiis, a varying number of chii phraams (temporary ascetic women) and 47 schoolgirls called dhammacarinii living at the samnak chii. The dhammacariniis studied secondary education and Buddhism at the samnak chii’s school. The samnak chii opened that school in 1990 and it was the first school ever established by mae chiis for girls in Thailand.

I learned about the life at the Ratburi Samnak Chii by partaking in the daily activities such as meditation, early morning alms rounds, daily communal meals, different kinds of ceremonies at the samnak chii and at temples, private homes, and other places for meetings and ceremonies that the mae chiis were invited to by other mae chiis, monks or lay persons. I gathered insights into mae chiis’ lives through daily interactions, friendships, informal conversations, and socialising, as well as from recorded interviews.

Thai moral codes devalue women, rendering them ineligible for ascetic lives and locating them firmly in the world of the sensual as nurturers, mothers providers of sons for the monkhood. Keyes (1984) has countered this view, insisting that a proper reading of Buddhist texts and rituals results in a ‘different but equal’ view of men and women, rather than a ‘superior/inferior’ formulation. indd 33 18/6/07 14:33:56 Making Fields of Merit Buddhism is by some authors blamed for the subordination of Thai women and is considered to provide a moral framework for men’s hierarchical precedence over women.

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