Reflections on observations of other cultures

(This was written when I was in Texas)

Texas is a place with high pride, low capacity people.  Need to channel pride into a confidence that if you work hard you can accomplishing anything combined with equanimious humilty accepting where you are at.  You can do what you can do, work hard to learn the rest.

American culture is based on individualism, so show how practicing Dharma is a natural conclusion of that.  Self-made Buddhas.
One of the reasons I am here in Texas is to help build within my mind the bridge between Kadampa Buddhism and the Christian world I inhabit.  To be able to express the meanings of Kadampa Buddhism in terms Christians can understand, and ultimately to show how the essential meaning of Christianity is Kadampa Buddhism.  If I do become a diplomat, and come to abide in different worlds (Islamic, Hindu, etc.), then I will have the opportunity to build similar bridges.  In this way, I will gain the realizations necessary to be able to transmit Kadampa teachings effectively to this whole world.  One of the biggest Western conceits is to grasp at their point of view as the universal one.  I need to break free from this uni-cultural straight jacket and do as VGL is doing, namely learning to transmit the essential meanings of Kadam Dharma through the different cultural logics of this whole world.  When we take the larger, more broad understanding of JTK in this world, we see he has many different bodies sent throughout the world bringing the essential meanings of Kadam Dharma and learning how to transmit them in different cultural contexts.  It is a limitation to require others to adopt my cultural logic before I can then explain to them the essential meanings of Kadam Dharma.  Rather, I need to come to understand their cultural logics, meet them where their minds are at, and then through these logics transmit the meanings of Kadam Dharma.  I am not talking about mixing here.  I am talking about remaining centered within the hub of the essential meanings of Kadam Dharma and from this hub being able to radiate out into the spokes of every religion and every culture this meaning in a way they can understand, appreciate and put into practice.  In this way, I can draw them in and deliver them to freedom.  This is what VGL is trying to do in this world, and it is amazing.  May I do the same.  

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