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Monthly Archives: October 2013

I wouldn’t call myself a Buddhist.  At least, not yet.  I don’t know the rules of Buddhism, and since I was raised Catholic, I’m used to very strict, non-bendy rules.  With Catholicism, you can’t just wake up one morning and declare yourself a Catholic.  You need to be baptized Catholic.  You need to be confirmed Catholic.  If you’re not born and raised as a Catholic, you probably have to go to classes and take tests and have meetings and do other horribly boring tasks before the Catholic church will allow you the honor of calling yourself a Catholic.  And so, while I love what I  know about Buddhism, I also realize I know very little about Buddhism.  And I certainly haven’t been baptized or confirmed a Buddhist.  Nor have I gone to Buddhism classes, taken Buddhism tests, or participated in any horribly boring Buddhist meetings.  I don’t even know if any of those things are available to fledgling Buddhist wannabes.  That’s how much I don’t know about Buddhism.  So wouldn’t call myself a Buddhist.

BUT.  All that being said, I’m drawn to the idea of ‘Buddhist economics.’  From what I understand, there’s a tradition in Buddhism, of the teachers offering their teachings on a donation basis.  There is the implied understanding that all those who benefit from the teachings will then go forth and share those teachings with others-also on a donation basis.  After all, it would be bad juju (technical Buddhist term) to get something for free and then turn around and try to make a huge profit from it.

I’ve been curious about this concept for a while.  SAME cafe in Denver offers lunch on a Pay What You Can basis.  I’ve read stories about other restaurants in other cities doing the same thing.  My shaman offers sessions on a sliding scale.  And when I do a Pay What You Want Week for my birthday every year, it’s one of my favorite weeks of the year.  It’s all so fascinating to me.  Can it really work long term?  It sounds so very lovely, and community oriented, and utopian, and magical, and full of opportunities for people to rip you off and take advantage of you…  But SAME has been open and operating for 7 years now.  It seems like it can really work long term.  Which leads me (in a very long and roundabout way, I know) to my point; and that is this:  I’m offering all my sessions through the end of the year on a Pay What You Want basis to experiment.  Then, I’ll reevaluate.

Just to clarify.  I’m offering healing sessions on a donation basis.  I am not expecting you to then go out and offer healing sessions on a donation basis, unless you yourself are a healer and feel drawn to do so.  I am simply hoping that with less pain, you will be able to start your day with more energy.  With better range of motion you will be able to greet your coworkers with more kindness.  With a better night’s sleep you will be able to meet your children with more patience.  Pay it forward in some way, shape, or form.  You know; standard hippy dippy hopes and dreams.

If you already have a session booked, you can pay what you want for it, everything else stays the same.  If Pay What You Want or sliding scale situations make you uncomfortable (I know you’re out there), feel free to pay my regular rate.  I do have a couple of rules for this experiment, just to (try to) maintain my sanity. 1) Pay what makes sense for you.  I don’t know your economic situation.  Please don’t ask me what you should pay.  If you can give a little more, please do so.  If you can’t, no worries.  Consider your life right now and pay what makes sense for you.  2) Please limit your form of donation to money, consumables, or experiences.  No stuff please.  I have enough stuff.  And a tiny apartment.  There is no more space for stuff.  But money is nice.  So are homemade cookies and bottles of wine.  So are scuba diving lessons, concert tickets, and horseback riding adventures.  Just no stuff, please.  3) Lastly, I beg of you, don’t make me regret this.  Don’t book 12 sessions, then show up for none of them.  That’s rude.  Don’t book a session and show up 30 minutes late, either.  Don’t get mad at me when I’m not available to work with you all day and all night and weekends and holidays.

I think those are the only rules I have.  Pay what makes sense for you.  No stuff.  Don’t be rude.

Oh my gosh, SassyPants, I’m so excited/nervous about this experiment!  I feel like we should place bets on the success rate or something.  But that’s not very Buddhist.  Or is it?  I really don’t know.  I’m just a fledgling Buddhist wannabe.

Much love,
Theresa