Buddahist thoughts on dating
There were some good dates, some bad dates, a LOT of awkward dates, and then one amazing date that turned into many amazing dates with the guy I’ve now been dating for 2 years.
So what is Right Effort, and what does it have to do with dating anyway?
Hi there, everybody: My dear friend Whitney was in town the other week, and one of the things we talked quite a bit about was how Buddhism has helped her feel more at peace with life. But no, seriously, let's talk, and I'll try to be helpful.
The Solution: You employ “Right Effort,” putting your energy in the right place, but letting go of control of the outcome. Over a couple months, I went out with about twenty different people, some for one date, some for several dates, and some for a month or more.
Familiar as that might sound, it was good to hear what Whitney was explaining—so good that I decided to find out if there was some Buddhism guru out there who might have some tips about how to "stay Zen" while dating. And I can't get anyone to write me back on the stupid dating sites. Any thoughts on how I can deal with something like that if it happens again? It was a typical Hollywood gathering—meaning most of the people there were looking to meet someone who would further their careers!
A friend said I should check out Brad Warner, author of HARDCORE ZEN. And after I contacted him to ask if he had any insight into how to apply Buddhist ideas to dating, he wrote back to say: I'm dating myself right now—and, oh, it's miserable! Or how to brush it off if I'm at a party and some dude clearly isn't interested in me, despite the fact I think he's cute? I was introduced to one woman who clearly lost interest in me as soon as she heard I'd written some books about Zen.
The only time I ever meet cute women who are interested in dating me is when I'm giving a lecture. She literally began looking over my shoulder to see who else was around. Apparently there are a lot more single women in NYC, and a lot more single men in LA, which probably helps to explain why we're having these kinds of experiences. But anyway, here's how I handled that woman: I finished my sentence, said good-bye, and I walked away.
I go to parties here in Los Angeles and they run away screaming! ME: I'm not taking pleasure in your misfortune, but I must say, it's good to be reminded that even men go through interactions like that. There was no point in continuing the interaction if she didn't want to be a part of it.