Now three weeks after the vassa I came down from the mountain and seclusion and have been out in the world. In the beginning it was fun, the first couple of hours.
I went out with Nelson, he invited me to a dentist. It was about time to go to the dentist. Two teeth have been made, two more will be cared for in December. Then I was invited for shopping all that we would need in the monastery. We went to a Supermarket, one of those big department stores where you get almost everything. Yeek! Total sensory overload.
Talking with Nelson, who is a devoted practitioner and would like to be a monk (he is over 70 and the Ajahn of his choice will not ordain him), was good.
During the vassa I had thoughts of disrobing. Not always, but I played with the thought.
I had a very romantic illusion about being disrobed, that is: living almost like a nun with a friend who likes to live almost like a monk, each their own kuti, somehow food would just come, I could cook sometimes and teach meditation, everything would be just harmonic, happy and fine. And nananaa… Nobody would know me and I would not be cause for controversy as I am being a Bhikkhuni.
Looking at it more realistic, I would most probably starve to death because I don’t think I would ever fit into this lay peoples world. Disrobing would not be for the purpose of jumping into the full pot of sense pleasures but to dissolve more, to disappear. To be just a loving, compassionate elderly nobody. After the year in Australia and being abbess I thirst for that. It was too early for me to do such a job.
This vassa, for the first time since I ordained, nobody was talking bad about others. This was so healing. I did not ordain to get to know who is an idiot and understands the Dhamma wrong and who understands it correctly, who is a good monk or nun who is bad. (A person who judges like this implies to have the understanding of the Dhamma to be able to discern). Non of this during this vassa. Wonderful.