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Good Friends/Kalyanamittas: A Personal Ad :dharmawheel:

I wish to find and form a close circle of kalyanamittas who share both a mutual interest in studying and practicing the Dhamma-Vinaya of the Buddha together as well as complementary (though not necessarily identical) ultimate aspirations (i.e. the overall direction and destination one subjectively wishes to end up in - to better gauge whether our paths would likely diverge anyway or converge eventually).

The former (mutual interest in Dhamma-Vinaya) seems like “a common ground and foundation” while the latter (complementary ultimate aspirations) seems like “a mutual interest and goal.”

If you are interested in discussing and assessing the suitability of us becoming kalyanamittas, please feel free to reach out by private messaging/PM! :slightly_smiling_face::pray::dharmawheel:


Definition: personal, personal ad, personal advertisement
noun, an advertisement or message in the personal column of a newspaper.

Because, like all beings, I have limited time and resources to spend, I wish to invest, devote, and prioritize spending more and more time and resources associating with those who have a mutual interest in not acting contrary to the Dhamma-Vinaya and acting in accordance with the Dhamma-Vinaya.

I think that the majority of the beings that I know in person do not share my interest in the Dhamma-Vinaya. Unfortunately, this seems to make me feel lonely to some degree, regardless of the quantity of family and friends that I already do happen to have. Therefore, I am hoping to find beings (:upside_down_face:) on SuttaCentral with whom it would be most suitable for me to associate with.

It seems to me that a being is:
an unsuitable associate to the degree that associating with that being leads to the increase of harmful qualities in one’s mind and the decrease of beneficial qualities in one’s mind.
a suitable associate to the degree that associating with that being leads to the decrease of harmful qualities in one’s mind and the increase of beneficial qualities in one’s mind.

Furthermore, it seems to me that:
disassociating from the wise and associating with the foolish, one lives unhappily.
disassociating from the foolish and associating with the wise, one lives happily.

Therefore, I am interested in:
disassociating from those who are unsuitable for me to associate with.
associating with those who are suitable for me to associate with.

For whatever subjective or objective reasons, I realize that I would most likely not get along with all beings equally well - and that is okay! However, without trying or putting in the effort to look at all, it seems like I will be significantly less likely to find any more suitable beings to associate with.

Having found at least one such kalyanamitta already and seeing the (profound) value gained from this, I think that I regret not looking more suitably and proactively earlier on. To learn from and prevent this regret from recurring, I seem to feel a sense of urgency to renew my search for kalyanamittas, perhaps this time more globally, with whom it would be most suitable for me to associate.

Thank you in advance for your valuable time and careful consideration. :pray: :slightly_smiling_face:

Related post:

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What we need it a kalyanamitta app. That way we can find amazing white clothed laypersons near us who love to go for long walks along the meditation path, and like dry pina coladas and getting caught in the rain retreats.

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:star_struck:
Exactly. I agree.
But since I haven’t yet been able to find such an app, this SC personal ad was my next best bet.
I couldn’t find a more suitable place than SuttaCentral to post this (one and only one) ad.

p.s. By “beings,” I meant that I am open to both lay and monastic kalyanamittas.
In fact, I am open to kalyanamittas living in any realm of existence at all, conditional only on the standard and criteria mentioned above.

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From time to time “practice groups” have been formed here on the forum.
One can invite a number of people to a PM and as such have a private group discussion.

It is at least one way of finding a group of kalyanamittas with whom one can discuss practice issues. (Since discussion of personal practice is discouraged within the public threads).

:slight_smile:

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PM groups can be of great benefit to the members. :blush:

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Thank you for informing me! :pray:

That is interesting. What is the rationale for this?

That sounds quite happy :slightly_smiling_face:


Is anyone interested in PMing me individually? And if after discussing, sustaining an association seems suitable, perhaps eventually forming a “study-and-practice of Dhamma-Vinaya” PM group?
If yes, please feel free to do so! :slightly_smiling_face:
If I can’t find kalyanamittas here on SC, I am not sure where else I’d be more likely to find suitable beings lol :sweat_smile::joy:

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One thing to bear in mind going forward is that we discourage people from sharing details about their personal practice on D&D. Allowing all comers to write about significant accomplishments is a bit difficult because sometimes ‘unbalanced’ people take advantage and make exaggerated or fraudulent claims. And even with sincere people who are practicing diligently the venerables on the site aren’t willing to give personal meditation advice in a public space. So the discussion remains pretty general, unless people want to gather in PM groups.

I wish you success in your practice and I hope that a number of like-minded people contact you.

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Thank you for explaining. :pray:

Thank you.

Thank you :pray: I really hope so too. :slightly_smiling_face:

Further info: I am currently 29, male, and grew up in NJ, USA.
I don’t think the Buddha made any distinction between non-kin (Mahavira vs. Koṇḍañña) and kin (Devadatta vs. Ananda). Similarly, I wish to try to suitably transition away from the traditional emphasis on “family and friends” as an external support system towards a more suitable emphasis on “suitable kalyanamittas” regardless of whether they happen to be already be “family and friends” or not.

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I am not being pessimistic but one issue that I foresee is the inability to agree on core issues. For example, Dependent Origination is variously interpreted and each interpretation has its own supporters. So how can they become Kalyanamittas when they have differing interpretations on such core issues?.
With metta

I agree, you seem like you’re being realistic.

I agree :100:
That is why I proposed discussing and assessing suitability - the primary way to do this seems to be by discussing core issues upfront, openly, and honestly. I don’t think anyone really wants to waste their time and resources investing in something that won’t work out in the long-run anyway - might as well steer clear of whatever and whoever is unsuitable right from the beginning.

The reason I am hopeful that it is possible to form such a core group is that I have met at least one person with whom I am able to arrive at some semblance of agreement on core issues, including interpretations, etc.

I have met at least one person with whom I do not agree on core issues, but with whom I agree with on the principle of agreeing on some ideal of ultimate truth which various beings attempt to represent with varying degrees of accuracy which can be tested empirically and understood experientially.

Beyond these beings, I have family and friends with whom I am somewhat close with, but still relatively in disagreement with on core issues to varying, but significant degrees.

I.e. they may agree with me on basic principles of false/true, harmful/beneficial, etc. in theory, but they do not agree with say my “value assessment” of Buddhism - based on their own assessment, they do not perceive Buddhism to be as objectively valuable as I do based on my own assessment (i.e. it is foremost in terms of actual, objective value).

I completely agree with your caution regarding these issues.

Despite these, I still wish to try and attempt at least exploring, discussing, and seeing through the possibility of becoming kalyanamittas with others who I have not yet met so far.

If, based on our discussions, we find that it is unsuitable to associate, I think it is best to suitably and harmoniously conclude the association rather than trying to force something to fit that doesn’t actually fit. I.e. there is no obligation to sustain any unsuitable associations.
Sometimes it helps me to think of these in terms of career fits: there are many ways to rightly earn a living (“right livelihood”), but just because a career is harmless and beneficial doesn’t mean that it is necessarily suitable for a particular individual.

Based on my previous happy experiences of finding and sustaining associations with at least one kalyanamitta, it’s the prospect of being able to form such a core group of kalyanamittas that motivates me to at least try to look! :slightly_smiling_face:

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Sounds good. Please let me know via e mail how you understand dependent origination to start with. I have my own understanding which might be different from yours but a meaningful private discussion based on the discourses can iron out differences if any.
If we both can agree and iron out any differences let us also agree to ensure that others’ opinions are also respected even though we do not subscribe to their view which means they are not in our group as Kalyanamittas but as just other contributors or associates. The same rationale prevails for us too.
With Metta

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Sounds relatively good and reasonable.

How shall I contact you? By PM or will you PM me your email address?

Makes sense. Argumentation, disputation, condescension, etc. seem to be contrary to the Dhamma-Vinaya - so disagreement doesn’t seem to be legitimate grounds for fighting at all.

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Please PM me. Thanks.
With Metta

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Click on the N beside Nimal’s name, then click on the envelope icon with the word “Message” beside it in the top righthand corner of the newly opened window.

(This is the facilty we were referring to when we mentioned PM groups above. :slight_smile: )

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One might also find that keeping the company of sandpaper invariably smooths one. May all beings smooth each other with the brahmaviharas, which are limitless.

:heart:
:pray:

MN43:31.2: Firstly, a mendicant meditates spreading a heart full of love to one direction, and to the second, and to the third, and to the fourth. In the same way above, below, across, everywhere, all around, they spread a heart full of love to the whole world—abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will. They meditate spreading a heart full of compassion … They meditate spreading a heart full of rejoicing … They meditate spreading a heart full of equanimity to one direction, and to the second, and to the third, and to the fourth. In the same way above, below, across, everywhere, all around, they spread a heart full of equanimity to the whole world—abundant, expansive, limitless, free of enmity and ill will.

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I emailed you my current understanding of paṭiccasamuppāda.

Due to this valid point, I copied and pasted my current (since I am still in the process of learning) understanding of paṭiccasamuppāda below too since it seems like a core issue that would be helpful to discuss in PM/by email with other potential kalyanamittas anyway.

Four Noble Truths
Problem: sadness (dukkha)
Cause: thirst (tanha)
End: extinguishment (nibbana)
Way to the End: way (magga)

Noble Eight-Limbed Way
Balanced View
Balanced Intention
Balanced Speech
Balanced Action
Balanced Livelihood
Balanced Effort
Balanced Memory
Balanced Concentration

Twelve Conditions of Conditional Occurrence
Misunderstanding
Formation(?)
(Sensory) Consciousness
Mind-and-Matter
(Sensory) Organ(/Base?)
Conjunction
Feeling
Thirst
Fuel(/Clinging?)
Becoming
Birth
Aging, Illness, Death, and the rest of Sadness (dukkha)

Brief explanation:
The Buddha seems to identify the cause of sadness (dukkha) to be thirst (tanha).
The two extreme ways of trying to quench thirst seems to be indulgence and deprivation.
The commonality between these two extremes are that they attempt to quench thirst directly.
The middle way that the Buddha claims actually quenches thirst is the Noble Eightfold Path.
The Noble Eightfold Path seems to lead to understanding (panna), which attempts to quench thirst indirectly by clarifying misunderstanding (avijjā), which in turn quenches thirsts (tanha), which in turn extinguishes sadness (dukkha).
This is the way in which I currently understand the concept of paṭiccasamuppāda.

Reminds me of:
76. Should one find a man who points out faults and who reproves, let him follow such a wise and sagacious person as one would a guide to hidden treasure. It is always better, and never worse, to cultivate such an association.
Dhp 76 Panditavagga: The Wise

:pray::pray::pray::pray:

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I tend to try and keep company with people who have good virtue, even if they aren’t Buddhist. Like there are a few people in my degree’s cohort who are generous, and so I try and hang out with them so they can rub off on me a bit. There are a lot of good people who aren’t Buddhist. Maybe one can’t ask them a meditation question or understanding a problem as impermanence or not-self, but they can help with some other parts of the path.

I do try and let a sandpaper-person smooth me out instead of scratch me too. There are plenty of those types!

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Modified a relevant quote you posted on another thread:

:pray:

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Who are not into yoga and have half a brain? :laughing:

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