Buddhologist or Buddhist
I have been interested in Buddhism for years now and have read many books and articles and feel that as a way of life and a philosophy it beats the rest. The problem is I can't take the step from an intellectual interest in it to a practising Buddhist. Somebody once described the difference between a Buddhologist and a Buddhist. I am the former and would like to know how to go on further. Have you any ideas.
Hello Martin and thank you for the question.
I have to admit that, like you, I am more of a Buddhologist that a practicing Buddhist. I have practiced for some periods of time in my life but by pure laziness, I am not currently practicing. I need to sit down and meditate but my mind, like many of us, is filled with things and doesn't want to quiet down.
I know the answer to your question though. It is two-fold:
1-commit to meditation. Be it 5 minutes a day at first, to slowly increase the time you meditate. Meditation is at the core of most Buddhist traditions.
2-Seek a teacher or a group in the tradition that talks to you the most and join the group/ class or join a retreat. By committing to the teachings and seeking refuge in the Sangha, you will get support from the community in your spiritual quest.
You don't mention what tradition appeals to you the most but if it is Zen, you could join this group in London: Dogen Sangha of London
I hope you will realize yourself and become a living Bodhisattva.