How God pursued me even when I was certain I’d already found truth.
On a warm summer’s day in 1991, I sat in Amaravati Buddhist Monastery, a temple north of London, my heart full of confusion and inner turmoil. I had begun seriously to doubt my faith.
It didn’t make sense. I thought I had found the truth in Buddhism and had given up everything necessary to become a Buddhist nun seven years earlier. In the temple led by American monk Ajahn Sumedho, life was strict and disciplined, involving many ascetic practices designed to simplify daily existence and help us detach from earthly things. Our lives were based around meditation practice; we were celibate, slept little, and ate only one meal a day. I was known for my strong faith in Buddhism, and had not ever really doubted the purpose of living by its teachings.
Suddenly I found myself, with my shaven head and robe, spontaneously rushing down to the traditional Anglican church in the nearby village. “I’ve got to talk to somebody, I’ve got to understand what’s happening to me,” I thought.
Upon entering, I looked around anxiously for the priest. “Could you pray for me, please?” I asked when I spotted him. “I’m very confused.” Unfazed, he graciously guided me to the Holy Communion rail and asked me to kneel. He laid his hands on my shoulders and prayed. As he did so, I broke down sobbing uncontrollably.
As the tears abated, the priest’s compassionate eyes met mine, and he said, “We need to talk.” We agreed to meet the following week.
After being prayed for, I felt a great release of the emotions and conflict deep inside of me. I was expectant that this man of God might be able to help me. How things had changed from my certainty about Buddhism to barely …
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