A Campus Visit
Durham College! It's a place I never knew existed. We are looking at a relatively large campus with spanking new buildings set in a fairly green cedar oasis.
Prof. Rick Kerr invited me to his World Religions course at the campus. Larry Johanson, a Zen practitioner, was just finishing his presentation to the class while four of us monks were looking for which building we were to be coming to. I asked a student outside where the religious department is to be found.
"I don't know. I'm not religious," he said.
"Well maybe one day you will be."
"Nah, I've been there - done that."
Once we located our building we entered it looking for the actual room when a young student quite the opposite of the first, enthusiastically asked us, "Are you guys monks?"
"Yes, we definitely are - the Real McCoys."
"Are you doing some meditation somewhere?"
"Yes, right here on the campus - in a few short minutes with teacher Rich Kerr."
"I wish I could be there," he said lamentably.
After minor struggle, we found Rick's class and were getting greeted by a grateful teacher. We proceeded to indulge in explaining Krishna Conscious philosophy and lifestyle. Students took notes and then asked questions that they pondered, not all of them philosophical.
"Where do you get your clothes made?"
"India," I said.
The students expressed concern that we don't support sweat shop efforts such as child labour. Another student said that her boyfriend is vegetarian and asked if we could share our recipes.
"Why did you choose to be monks? are there female monks? How do you differ from Hindus?"
Rick was pleased with our presentation which included chanting. That was regarded as special for everyone on a Monday morning.
When all was done, I remarked to my monk companions that this is the life. Whether on foot or in a vehicle, sharing our culture brings real satisfaction.