A Buddhist Students` Manual by Christmas Humphreys

By Christmas Humphreys

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His tireless enthusiasm was shared by many, but his immense capacity for wearisome yet necessary work was quite unique. W ithout his aid our Magazine might be yet unfounded ; but for his untiring zeal and infinite patience the Buddhist West would still be without a Buddhist Glossary, and the far larger and more complicated publication, our unique Buddhist Lodge Bibliography, which took him five years to compile. It was at this same memorable meeting th at we decided to attem pt a scheme long desired by many of us, a Buddhist Shrine Room open to the public, where all alike might meditate or read, away from the distracting noise of daily life.

Y et it may be that it is better so, for where there is money there is generally discord in the spending of it, and a movement obviously well financed makes no caU on the generosity of its rank and file. Be th at as it may, none of the Buddhist societies founded in this country has ever been self-supporting, and the financial history of each has been the same, a series of appeals for the wherewithal to stave off a financial crash, interspersed with occasional donations from those rare beings, sympathisers who had the means to help as well as the will.

He was not allowed to sleep in a house where a woman sle p t; hence the need for two houses at Barnes. His food could only be eaten a t specified hours, with nothing later than noon. He slept on a bed on the floor, to avoid breaking the precept against "high and soft beds", and in every other way tried to preserve the ascetic dignity of his adopted life. The most awkward situations, however, arose not in the house but out of it. He was not allowed to handle money, so could never travel alone. But he wore at all times the bright yellow robes of the Sangha, and such a garb brought wondering crowds and ribald comment from costermongers and small boys.

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