This afternoon after working from home for half a day, I walked to the station to go to the office so I can be there in person for a couple of meetings. I arrived at the station with the next train still ten minutes away. I sat at a bench with my Buddhist study “Hope for a Brilliant Future” editions for Jan & Feb 2019 and a pencil, hoping to make good use of this time.
An old-ish white man was conducting surveys on behalf of Sydney Trains to gather feedback on the station experience and opportunities for improvement. As he finished asking the lady sitting next to me, he asked me for input. I agreed to participate in the survey, half hesitant and cynical but wanting to get my opinion in. I provided feedback on how the signage could be made better outside the station and how the station needs to have disabled access to the platforms, not just stairs.
At the end of the survey he apologized for interrupting my study. I acknowledged and said I didn’t mind, it was Buddhist study, I mean I wasn’t studying for a uni exam or something. He was intrigued. He said there was a Buddhist temple near his house. I remarked that the type of Buddhism I practice was lay people like him and I and we didn’t go to a temple.
I definitely wasn’t prepared for his next question that was very left field. He asked me whether Buddhists believed in Jesus.