What is sangha?

 

What’s sangha?

In a conventional sense, it’s a community of people who share, tradition, practice, intention and aim.

I also find it’s every situation and person, since everyone and everything is a support and invitation for me to heal, mature and wake up. The world is a  mirror for me. The world is my sangha.

And really, everything is a community of spirit. It’s all happening within and as awareness, and within and as capacity for it all.

This is a good example of how any thought – including the idea of sangha – is a question, an invitation for inquiry. When I explore it for myself, what do I find?

I also find that an initial sense of reality or solidity of the thought “sangha” dissolve as it’s explored further.

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Dimensions of practice: alone and with others

 

We can practice alone or with others.

If we stay with just one or the other, we miss out of something.

If we only practice on our own, we miss out of the support from others on the same or a similar path. We miss out of the inspiration and course corrections offered by a community of fellow explorers.

If we only practice with others, we miss out on checking out how this works when we are on our own. Am I dependent on the community to practice and to bring it into my life? How does it look when I am on my own, and in other situations?

Yet if we do both, we can benefit from the best of each. We get the moral and informational support from a group of fellow practitioners. And we get to test it out on our own, alone, in different settings.

Courage to explore

 

In this shift into endarkenment, I am especially grateful for company along the way.

Among the few traveling companions I have found are Karen and Barry, leading our diksha group, and who have both gone through and are deepening into the endarkenment.

Adyashanti who briefly mentioned the three centers of awakening when he spoke in Ashland, and how his main shift started as a belly awakening.

And also Hameed Ali, who has written about all this in such a clear and detailed way in many of his books, under the pen name A. H. Almaas.

Especially as this seems to be a little outside of the well-worn paths of the traditions, at least what is spoken about openly and presented to a general audience, it is good to find fellow travelers. It gives courage to explore. To dive into it more fully.