“Despite the clarity of the teachings, we often lose sight of this essential aim of eradicating mental poisons and self-clinging. In fact, instead of eliminating those poisons, we often end up increasing them. For example, people that practice the Dharma have a tendency to gather together and organize themselves. They create institutions, Dharma centers, and monasteries that can quickly become banners proclaiming their self-importance. ‘We are this. We are that. We are Nyingma! Kagyu! Sakya! Geluk!’ People in these institutions nominate someone to be president, secretary and treasurer. These officials can easily become proud of these titles. Gradually, their activities come to be at odds with their original purpose.”
Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche
The end of another road looms ahead, bye bye to another venture into the land of institution. There are distinct advantages to joining a group: financial and administrative support, security, structure, apparent safety. But the potential pitfalls are great–abuse of power, deception, lies, betrayal, greed. When the integrity of the situation falls apart, massive organizations can become the obstacle to the very thing they claim to advocate.
I’m out on my own again, a nomad yogini. Sure, it can be lonely and insecure. I’m never sure where my next station is. But I’d rather wander in the desert, trusting divine navigation, than follow a caravan to the mirage.
If you ever fret for want of community or support, know that you are not alone. We all dwell under the great blue expanse together, and don’t fantasize that joining an organization will eradicate your loneliness or make other people act decently. Here’s to finding your own way, and doing it with kindness, even towards those who do you harm.
Express your unique gifts, even if they don’t fit into an organizational chart. You are loved, supported, filled with light and just fine the way you are. Let others know the same and you will realize it.