I’ll keep this short and sweet. Recently I’ve been pondering the idea of becoming a professor of Eastern Religions, particularly Buddhism. I can’t put my finger on it exactly, but something about Buddhism, it’s core teachings and practicality, the Buddha himself, and my interactions with avid practitioners (especially my advisor in college who is a Zen Buddhist herself and someone who I greatly admire) have shown me that this is what I want to do with my life. I do not want to be a monk, as my dream is also to be an educator who inspires people and one day have a family.
My question is:
- Where do I go from here? One thing I have learned about Buddhism is the danger of over-intellectualization.
- How do some of you find a balance between Buddhist practice (which aims to free us from our minds), and using your mind effectively (to learn about the teachings or follow your passion and calling in life)?
Also, for those of you that have PhD’s in this field, what is your advice?
If you have any further questions you need feel free to ask and I greatly appreciate your help.
Edit: At the moment, I am a 21 year old rising college junior pursuing a major in religious studies. I meditate daily using the app 10% happier, but as I progress would like to learn more advanced Buddhist specific techniques. There is a sangha run by my professor every Tuesday that I hope to attend when I return to school in a week. I would say I have a decent grasp of a basic history and understanding of Buddhism and its teachings, yet find myself daunted by just how much there is to learn and a concern of mine is losing myself in the teachings/history which would be required of me if I pursued the career I hope to. Perhaps though, this in itself is a great opportunity to learn balance and the challenges mentioned are all the more reason to pursue. Thank you.