I’m back in San Diego for Another week before making my way back up to Wat Chansisamakidham Buddhist Temple in Stockton for my birthday weekend.
The community at there are putting together a small ceremony to wish me well on my journey to study in Sri Lanka as well as to help fundraise for it. I appreciate it a lot and I will miss them quite a bit. It’s been almost a year since I met everyone there. Seemingly random that they came down to San Diego one day and requested from my teacher for help with their temple because they were short on monks so my teacher sent me and another monk to spend Vassa (annual rains retreat) there from July to October.
It was my first time being away from my teacher’s temple while also staying at another temple for that long. I didn’t know what to expect, but even though their congregation is small they put in lots of efforts to make sure we monks were very comfortable. I ended up staying a couple of months longer than planned.
Anyways, I’m back in San Diego for only 2 weeks to take care of some things and prep for my journey ahead. I’ll be attending the Buddhist and Pali University in Sri Lanka which will require about 4 or 5 years to complete their B.A. and M.A. program for Buddhist Philosophy.
Many people on both ends, here stateside and in Sri Lanka, have been very kind and generous in helping me fundraise for my traveling costs and school fees. There’s no way I could go anywhere far on my own. This gives me much determination to give everything my best shot. It’s as though everyone is lending me parts of their strengths to carry on in hopes that I will find what it is I am looking for and bring it back to share with everyone else.
It’s like we are building a bridge together to connect this massive gap we have in front of us. Bridging a way to preserve our faith and Buddhism and to also help introduce it to others who may also be searching for a good and meaningful path to walk.
I am a bit nervous. This will be my first time traveling overseas as a monk. There are some things I want to accomplish before I reach Sri Lanka… Where studying in Sri Lanka is only one of the great mountains amongst an entire Alps of objectives I must reach.
One of my mentors told me to try and cast off all fears and doubts, especially if it’s fears about failing or dying. He said we can’t be scared if death if we wish to transcend it and reach Nirvana. Yeps, I know this, too. The distance is quite far and I am not exactly sure about what I am doing or how I am going to do it.. I just know that I have to do it and I’ll figure it out along the way. It’s a part of that freedom we all are looking for, right?