Sunday, 29 April 2012

Leaders and meetings

I wanted to spend a little time talking about the structure of the SGI.

Let’s say you have a friend who shakubu-ed you and you went to a couple of meetings. At some point someone will ask you for your email address and you will start receiving a “schedule” of the “district”, full of different types of meetings.

Being a fukushi, I’ve never really had that experience. I grew up in a house where meetings happened every other day and I sort of learnt all the lingo by osmosis.

I have to admit that when I moved to the UK at the beginning I was confused by the differences.

So I’m going to talk about the structure and organisation of divisions, meetings and leaders, but please bear in mind that everything that follows is only valid for the UK. Having witnessed a vastly different situation in Italy, I can just assume there will be differences in other countries as well.

Saturday, 21 April 2012

Etiquette at Buddhist meetings

I will now discuss a topic that’s very close to my heart: etiquette at Buddhist meetings.
As you know if you’ve read my profile or any post of my blog, I grew up in a Buddhist household. Both my parents are buddhist and at least until I was 16, my house was regularly offered for Buddhist meetings. Since the age of 12, I also actively took part in meetings myself. 
I was a very vivacious child and I still remember with some embarrassment episodes in which people (not necessarily my parents) told me off for disrupting a meeting. Sure, it wasn’t pleasant, but growing up I started to appreciate the importance of good manners in general, not just at meetings.
I haven’t got the faintest clue how many meetings I’ve been to in my life, I just know it’s a massive number, in different cities and different countries. I gathered a collection of memories and dos and don’ts that I think might prove useful for people who attend meetings and, possibly, also for people who are thinking about offering their house. 

Monday, 9 April 2012

Prayer beads

I finally found an article that explains the meaning of our prayer beads, or juzu. Yippee!!

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