Readers' Submissions

Finding A Partner In Buddhism





This is a response to Postman’s Spiritual Journey post. This is not an adventure in bargirl whoring so most of you may wish to move on to the next article. This is for the ones who lament not being able to meet a quality partner.

When I started reading his article, I was shaking my head positively with his proclamation about one of the biggest attractions to his wife was her devotion to Buddhism. He went on to explain that she really knew nothing about her religion of birth and was now switching sides to become a Christian.

I was a little confused by the point of the article. I grew up as a Catholic, or more appropriately, had it shoved down my throat until I was of an age to determine my own path. It never really took hold. I resented missing cartoons as a child while having to go to classes every Saturday morning and as I got older, missing the start of football games on Sunday. I always resented my father forcing us to go with my mother while never attending himself. Now I realize it was the only time of peace and quiet he could get with a big Catholic family.

Anyway, I totally agree that one of the things I most admire about my wife is her adherence to Buddhist beliefs. While we don’t have a temple close by our home in America, we do make it to the closest one several times a year for the big holidays. But, my wife listens to various monks online on a daily basis.

I admire her unwavering sense of right and wrong. On several occasions we have found money on the ground while traveling. On one occasion a substantial amount, at least enough where the owner would surely miss it. My wife would rather pick up a Cobra then touch that money. I on the other hand would knock people over to get at it. But, I don’t because I know my wife would be very disappointed in me. In that regard she has made me a better person. Now, if she wasn’t there, that money would be gone in a split second! If someone was to steal from my wife, she would think it was her own fault because she had stolen something in a prior life. I admire that she never tries to place blame.

Her calmness and happiness have made her very successful as a business owner in a service industry. Her customers value her trustworthiness and honesty. They find it refreshing to find such a giving person. I have received many complements of my wife from her customers. That makes me feel very proud of her.

The biggest effect my wife’s teaching has had on me is in the anger department. I am quick to anger when wronged and am a monster when driving and some fool is tooling along in the “fast” lane, not allowing others to pass. In the past, it may have resulted in a one finger salute when I finally managed to get around him or her. Now, I just wait the opportunity to pass and leave the fool in my rear-view mirror. She is right, there is little you can do about it so why get all wound up.

In all our years of marriage, I can only think of one occasion that my wife allowed her anger to surface. She has been instrumental in getting me to look inside to see where the anger is coming from and what it ends up accomplishing. In most cases nothing. I am a calmer person because of her teaching me techniques to control my anger response. I am sure my heart will last a while longer because of it.

I agree with Postman that many Thais have little understanding of Buddhism. That is true of many people in many different religions. They call themselves Catholics or Protestants without really following the core directives. You do not have to believe in a “God” in order to be a good person. Most of us learn right and wrong outside of religion.

My wife has a group of friends scattered throughout the United States that she talks to regularly about Buddhist beliefs. They exchange YouTube videos from various monks and lean on Buddhist teachings when challenging situations come up in their lives. I like that the basic tenets of Buddhism are based on making yourself a better person and not just a means to collect believers and dollars which is what I see in a lot of organized religion. I believe it was Albert Einstein who said if he was to follow one religion it would be Buddhism. I would agree.

So, getting back to my opening statement of finding a good partner, I truly believe if you can find a partner who follows the core values of Buddhism you will have one step up on the path to a good relationship. I am sure most of you who are looking for a good “I banged 5 bargirls in one night” story never made it to this point in the article. For those of you who have and are looking for a good Thai girl, visit a local temple in your area.

First off, you will eat well. Secondly, you will have the opportunity to meet some quality girls of all ages. In many cases, they will be with their families or close friends so you will be able to see how they interact with the closest people in their lives. I have often told my wife that I can’t believe so-and-so isn’t in a relationship as she is so beautiful and / or nice. I am at an age when most of my acquaintances are married or bitterly divorced and wouldn’t make a good match. But, if anything ever happened to my wife I know I would eventually find my way to our temple. I hardly speak or understand a word of Thai after almost ten years in a relationship, yet I always feel good after sharing a visit with the monks and an awesome meal afterwards. It really makes you feel like a part of a larger community.

I’m glad Postman’s wife has found something that makes her happy. I am a little surprised it was Christianity when comparing it to Buddhism which is where I thought his article was going. I find it ironic that I am recommending meeting Thai girls at temple when I was often told to meet a girl at church when I was single. I would rather chew off my arm than be with a girl who makes decisions in life based on Western religion. I could not, and would never, marry a girl who has strong beliefs in there being a “God” that controls our lives. But, I have no problems being with a girl that has strong Buddhist beliefs.

Life can be funny at times.

Signed,
Joe