I really love your blog, and for more reasons than your wit and your kickassness. Can I ask a question? And please, if this is incredibly offensive, let me know. I was raised agnostic, but have always felt more spiritual. I had a friend (her family is from India) who was Buddhist take me to the temple her family attended because she thought that with my mindset and beliefs, that I would "find peace" in the teachings there. That was a year ago. I have several books on Buddhism, and I work on....
thought that I was another white hipster trying to decorate her dorm room. While I look white (the genetic lottery granted me privilege-enhancing light skin that betrays my half-indigenous Mexican ancestry), and I suppose my music taste (Bon Iver, the National, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs) and clothing style (skinny jeans, flannel shirts, beanies) could classify me as a hipster, the purchase of the prayer flags was more than a dorm decoration. As that’s now my only home (my parents moved two months….
….I’ve always felt like I didn’t deserve the peace that comes to me from my very private practice of Buddhism. So I guess what I’m asking is, is this okay? If it’s not, then I’ll keep the flags down (I took them down after my roommate’s friend refused to leave the room until I did). But they truly have a deep significance to me, emotionally and spiritually. Buddhism has granted me a security of mind when all else has failed. I don’t want to give it up if what I’m doing is incredibly offensive
I think this is a really touching story and thanks for sharing. I think if Buddhism gives you strength to survive life’s tough shit, then keep it. Respect and respecting the people who it belongs to should not be that difficult. Understand the larger systems of oppression at play in relation to brown/black-skinned folks’ culture and accept what it means to participate or not participate in it.
Choosing to disengage from a global commodification of POC cultures does not make you less “buddhist”.