Monday, January 24, 2011

One of the promised stories of me vs monastics

Maybe you've heard of the "Dear Teen Me" project that many wonderful YA authors did a while back (or maybe still? I dunno) Well ( if you don't know) they wrote letters to their teenage selves. Mine would go something like this.

Dear Teen Lela,
You're an asshat. No really. As clever and cute and worldly as you think you are-- multiply that by 2 and you will have a rough estimation of your total asshattery.

Grown up and Over It Lela

One example of said asshatness would be my reception of an important Tibetan Lama. I was raised Buddhist and was often presented by my parents as a wunderkind (despite my obvious and apparent spazocity). So at 14ish I was given the awesome honor of being the attendant to this Lama.

I was supposed to pour him tea and bring him cough drops. I was supposed to move flower arrangements around, so that they were pleasing to him. I was supposed to be quiet and make sure no one came in the room that he was not expecting while he meditated.*

I was not supposed to go and give him a big hug.

I was 14. And when you go to a Dharma center everyone is all hugs and snuggles. So I did what I was used to doing. I wrapped my tiny little bird arms around him and squeezed till I was completely satisfied that he felt warmly welcomed.

Thing is--He was (and is) a monk. Monks don't generally touch people, but especially not women. He was kind-- he just smiled and laughed and babbled on in Tibetan.

My parents were MORTIFIED.

I didn't get to do that job anymore.(at least not while my parents were around...)

*Anyone who feels the need to comment on a lama having an attendant or monks not touching women-- Shut up. Seriously. It's my religion. It ain't perfect, but it's mine. This smut and silliness blog is not the place for your big political stand. Anyone wanting to make fun of me for being an idiot-- feel free. More stories of my idiocy and one of me being a genuinely good person to come!


sammyig said...

Personally, I think it's very sweet that you hugged him. Heck, how were you supposed to know that monks don't touch people!

Ani Raye said...

lol! Fun post, Lela, and totally fun pictures too :)
Really, how were you supposed to know anything at 14? And hugs are nice :)

Lela Gwenn said...

Yeah, well-- As a dharma brat I was supposed to "know" these things.

Glad you all got a kick out of it :)