Home again; the colder weather suits me fine. Watching the sun come up from my desk on the second floor of the monastic residence. Spent the early morning hours meditating then writing out the introduction to Pali grammar in Thai. TIL that taddhita are for the purpose of using fewer words to say the same thing and kitaka use suffixes to tell saadhana or kaala.
The trip home went smoothly. The Beijing airport gets upvotes for free hot and cold water and downvotes for strict transfer security and no wifi for foreigners. My good friend Ven. Guttadhammo picked me up at the airport.
At the monastery, there were several packages waiting, including a cpu fan to replace the old one, though now it seems the graphics card may be shot as well. There was also a nifty bluetooth keyboard someone sent, so I'm typing comfortably using Blogger on my mobile phone. Thanks for everyone who sent stuff; quite amazed at how great the wish list has been for that. Blessings of external and internal wealth to you all. Someone ordered a little usb thumb drive that connects directly to the phone, but it arrived broken; trying to order a replacement, but the company says they need the order number. If you have it, please send it along.
Too many projects on my plate, as usual, but instead of feeling overwhelmed, I feel useful. Will try to set up a video studio in the basement soon, start cranking out Dhammapada vids et al.
The trip is at the front of my mind; please, if you're a man and mentioned coming with me, and are still interested, send me another email so we can arrange to travel together. I suppose actually I could travel alone, but the USA is a bit scary for that, honestly (having been jailed once already just for being a monk...) Anyway, that is an option, so I guess it's on either way. Next step is to start calculating times and figuring out dates.
Translations are still underway (I hope!) and chances are good we'll have twenty languages by the end of the year. Thank you, thank you, thank you everyone who took / is taking part in this project. It's pretty amazing what people from all parts of the world can come together and make happen.
Book two on how to meditate will come when it comes... not sure if I'll actually get around to it with all this Pali stuff every day, but we'll see. Someday it will happen.
Lots of good stuff in the works. If you're in Ontario and want to come to meditate in Stoney Creek, we welcome you. Rooms, food, teaching, what more could you want?
I don't normally answer comments to my posts, just in the interests of sanity, but if you're wondering about the illusory nature of Thailand, as a country it exists only in our minds. Saying that Thailand or Canada or even this body is an illusion is perfectly in line with the Buddha's teaching:
pheṇūpamaṃ kāyamimaṃ viditvā, marīcidhammaṃ abhisambudhāno.
chetvāna mārassa papupphakāni , adassanaṃ maccurājassa gacche.
Realizing that this body is like froth, penetrating its mirage-like nature,
plucking out Mara's flower-tipped arrows of sensuality, go beyond sight of the King of Death!
-- Dhp. 46
This doesn't mean all is an illusion; physical and mental aspects of experience are very real.
All for now. Be well and bring peace to yourself and others!