“The Buddha’s view of home leaving is summarized in these words: ‘Household life is crowded and dusty; life gone forth is wide open. It is not easy, while living in a home, to lead the holy life.’ … We need to regard the Buddha’s first teaching about ‘life gone forth’ carefully; we need to be careful about cutting off both human feelings and relationships. Practicing nonattachment is not the same as practicing detachment. The former practice addresses the human selfishness we bring to all of our relationships and is guided by the relinquishing of self-clinging to reactions that arise. The latter is repressive and disconnected and seeks to keep our delusional selfcenteredness intact by avoiding intimate relational contact and feelings.
Furthermore, the description of family life as ‘crowded and dusty’ might encourage some to think that holiness is found elsewhere than that dustiness. Somewhere, other than right where we are, there is an ideal practice life that is dustless. Somewhere there exists a life pure and elevated from the dust of human family relations. Imagining this to be true is a serious mistake, and sadly not an uncommon one. While each of us needs to find quiet time to reflect on our true nature, it is important to see buddha-nature reflected even in our most annoying family members, relatives, and associates. If we cannot do this, our practice develops a puritanical, precious, detached, and heartless quality.” – Grace Schireson