Monday, August 2, 2010

Well, it wasn't until after my divorce (at age 32?) that I became Buddhist. It was a lot of nice, distant concepts when I was married to my husband. It wasn't until I sort of had a new round in recovery and needed yet again to find some kind of spirituality to call my own that I saught out a dharma center. Actually first I took an Intro. to Buddhism class with Michael Conklin, who happens to be the Lama at KCC. It was that class that led me to his dharma center. It was Tibetan rather than Zen, which appealed to my monkey mind better.

I have a Buddhist name "Karma Sherab Pelmo" which means Glorious Wisdom.

I was a pretty intense student of Buddhism formally for about 2 years, but informally ever since. I took refuge and received a Buddhist name: Karma Sherab Pelmo. I don't know that that has any lasting meaning, but it was very significant at the time. (Looked up the meaning: Radiant Woman of Higher Knowledge). I went on a rather special meditation retreat on the practice of Tonglen at the time as well.

One of the best things about that dharma center was they did Green Tara puja [prayer time]. I was able to find a deity that was female. That's why I eventually got my Green Tara tattoo.

My spirituality took another turn after I had a relapse for about a year and a half. My relapse happened in a relationship with someone who didn't support my being in 12 step recovery, or any spirituality really. During that time, I relocated from Portland OR to the Columbia Gorge in The Dalles. (I only moved to Hood River last year). When I got out of that relationship and wanted to get back into AA, I did so in the little, very conservative, very Christian town of The Dalles. So many AA members went to one church or another. Eventually, I dated a man (m) who was, as they say, "on fire for the Lord." I attended his Bible study and was "given the gospels" and shortly thereafter baptised (on Ground Hog Day).
I have taken the liberty to explore many denominations. I even found this cool test which is a christian denomination selector. Probably U.C.C. church fits me the best. But I like modern christian music, with worship teams and powerpoint words, etc., too. I've attended charismatic churches with some ambivalence. I also like Unity churches. I currently go to a christian coffee house, called Soul Cafe.


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