At least a month ago while I was taking Maya to her little preschool, she seemed quite fascinated with a little old lady walking on the sidewalk near us. I tried to tell Maya to stop staring but it didn’t work and it brought the old lady towards us. She asked me where I was from and things about Maya. Then she told me that she had this newspaper from SGI that she would love to give me. Before I knew it, I had given her my address and told her that I would love to get a copy of that newspaper. A couple weeks passed and she, sure enough, came to my door with the newspaper she promised. Daniel and I looked up SGI on the internet and found out that it is a Buddhist organization with branches worldwide. Since then she has come over (with friends) to bring us different things, like magazines and pamphlets and to see if we have read them. Just the other day she came over and brought an invitation to a young women’s meetings and asked me if I would like to attend with them. I was a bit surprised, but I accepted since I was a bit curious. So, today I went. Two younger ladies came and picked me up and it was nice to chat with them as we walked over to their center. We walked in removed our shoes and relaxed a bit before the meeting started. We sat en masse on the floor and listened to a few stories and watched a skit. I hardly understood any of the stories since they were talking so fast but I did understand the skit which was about a housewife who was not happy at home and then decided to read this book written by the leader (?) of SGI on being happy and finding contentment. And then she of course was happy. Then they had one lady talk about stuff (again, I didn’t catch very much) and then some chanting before a scroll in the front of the hall. It was all really quite interesting and I wish I had understood more. It seemed to be a meeting for all the women to get together and socialize and find inspiration together. My friends introduced me to some more people and then we left. I asked one of my new friends why she believed in Buddhism and what I understood from her was that she felt it was a good way to live life. She felt that she had received many blessings from it as well. I told her that I was a Christian and that I was a bit interested in SGI and that was why I came. She told me that there were a few people that attend meetings at that SGI center who were also Christian.

All in all, it was an interesting morning. I still don’t know that much about Buddhism but it was neat to learn a little more about how they live here in Korea. There have been a few times now where I have been stopped on the street by a pair of Buddhist “missionaries.” They usually ask me where I am from and about my beliefs. One pair of young ladies began to tell me about dreams they thought I have probably been having (after I told them my 띠 (my chinese zodiac sign…which is, by the way, a rat). I didn’t recall having any dreams like the ones they were telling me, either because I have a hard time remembering dreams or because I didn’t have them at all. But it was interesting to listen to them. I am not really sure if it is proselyting that they are doing. None have actually invited me to their Buddhist temple or meditation groups. I wonder if some of this has come about because of how diligent the Korean Christians are. If anyone happens to know, I would love to find out.

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