Life of late and perhaps some Gratitude

Life of late and perhaps some Gratitude March 26, 2009

Busy – I think is how I’d describe my life of late, but then again that’s nothing new. I’ve sent a bit of work to my advisor and await word back. I’ve promised more soon – along the lines of which I am enjoying Rupert Gethin’s 1997 article “Cosmology and Meditation: From the Aggañña-Sutta to the Mahāyāna” from History of Religions (Vol.36, No.3). He makes a persuasive argument that cosmology in early Buddhism (and beyond) must be taken seriously, even to folks trying to narrow our focus to ethics such as myself. So I’m working on a page or two of writing to convince my advisor that this topic belongs in my thesis.

Next, I’m working on an article for the AAR meeting (yet to be determined whether our group submission will be accepted or not).

Then there’s an article for wildmind on anicca – impermanence- due soon (by Friday).

Then I’m working on a talk for the Center for Ethics spring lecture series – April 13 (please do come if you’re in Missoula and can sneak away from things for an hour Monday 12:10-1pm).

I’m introducing a group of students called “Peers Reaching Out” to meditation in one hour tomorrow, after one successful 30 minute session to another small group and two sets of trainings of UM Freshmen Athletes. Speaking of meditation… Campus Sangha meets tomorrow at 6 at Brittany’s (email me Buddhistethics AT for directions). After that we’ll take a week off for spring break and then… Lots of meditation teaching.

I think that’s about it (not so bad when it’s listed out).

Oh, and the photo… Reading the latest AAR (American Academy of Religion) job report. Things look good. Based on a survey, about 1/3 of job candidates at the recent meeting were offered one or more jobs. That might sound low, but for academia it’s great. Back when I was thinking of seeking a job as a philosopher, the numbers were closer to 1 in 10 or 20. About 90% of salaries started over $40k, with over half over $50k. Another happy fact, for me at least, was that only 5% of candidates were under 30 years old. I’m pretty sure I’ll be amongst the canditates this year at my youthful 29. If all goes ideally I’ll be one of those happy 1/3 with a job and one of the >50% making $50k+ in just over 18 months. Odds are it will take me one more year – but we’ll be optimistic for now.

Let’s see, what else? Not much. I may be moving soon – after being spoiled, living alone for 3 weeks. Space and quiet are beautiful things, especially when trying to carry around a ph.d.’s worth of material in one’s head. Oh, and I ran a 5k last Saturday – 22:17 was the time; not bad for a starter on the season. Maybe one more of those, then a 10k, some more training, and ultimately the Missoula Marathon (early/mid July)…

Mmmkay. Gratitude, quickly:

  • My job – great people, deer sleeping in our back yard, learning much every day
  • My folks – giving me a kick in the butt on the thesis (needed) and the support to make it happen…
  • Intellectual Energy – Missoula’s had it of late…. makes me happy.
  • Exercise – this body, when it’s tuned up, is pretty fun to have! I still have a bit of a ‘Laughing-Buddha’ belly, but I’m ok with that.
  • Opportunities – sigh – so much to do! 🙂 It’s wonderful.
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