Tricycle Blog

Our daily diary of the global Buddhist movement Subscribe to feed
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 27, 2008

Two from the Buddhist Blog

Two great posts from the Buddhist Blog: Homosexuality and the Sangha, and a review of the latest from Master Sheng Yen. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 27, 2008

The Dalai Lama is exhausted

The Dalai Lama canceled an upcoming trip around Latin America due to exhaustion. The Olympics were a stressful time for anyone concerned with Tibet. Tibetan exiles are still protesting in Nepal -- very brave, considering the brutal crackdowns there recently and the newly elected Maoist Prime Minister. Nicholas Kristof discusses Tibet after the Olympics in the Times. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 27, 2008

Buddhist Festival on Wutai Mountain

There was a Buddhist festival on Wutai mountain in north China recently. Wutai Mountain is one of the four holiest mountains in China for Buddhists. More on Wutai Mountain here. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 27, 2008

Buddhists Protest Christian Government Bias in Korea

Protesters call on the government to resign in Bangkok. They call the current leader, Prime Minister Samak Sundaravej, a puppet of former P.M. Thaksin Shinawatra. There's more displeasure with the government in Korea, where Buddhists accuse President Lee Myung-bak of Christian bias. Mr. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 27, 2008

Breakfast this morning

I had breakfast with the Massachusetts delegation, and Al Franken was one of the guest speakers (along with joe Kennedy and Michael Dukakis.) During Al Franken's often very funny speech, someone's cell phone rang, and he said "I hope you need a liver." The people at my table were puzzled, but I got it right away:"He's saying he hopes they are on the transplant list, because otherwise there is no excuse for their cell phones being on." He went on to say,"I once chided someone when their cellphone went off during a talk, and they then told me they were waiting for a liver so they could have a transplant." He'd certainly lighten up the Senate. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 27, 2008

the Passage of time

I turned 56 recently. I was trying to send a fedex the other day, and for the first time ever,the helpful clerk told me that if I was 55 or older, i could get a 10% discount. gulp. My first discount based on age. When Ted Kennedy took the stage last night at the Democratic National Convention, I, like so many, saw the journey of my life flash in front of me...his brother John's inauguration and assassination, his brother Robert's assassination, the personal tragedies, the long tenure in the Senate, and now his bout with cancer. To see him on that stage, with a big chunk of his hair not yet grown back from the brain surgery, his voice so firm and filled with life, was amazing. The span of my life seems to fit so completely within the span of his. And it is so dreamlike: where did the time go? What makes a lifetime? I so admired his commitment in coming, and his expressing his passion and dedication. More »
Tricycle Community 5 comments

August 25, 2008

Jazz Cats, Hip to Breath

About a month ago, NPR's "Take Five: A Weekly Jazz Sampler" offered up tracks by five overlooked jazz greats. Among them was Bennie Maupin's "Past Is Past," from his 1974 album The Jewel in the Lotus. As the title of the album suggests, Maupin's music possesses a quiet, distinctly Buddhist glow, tracing emptiness to form and back again. With Herbie Hancock on piano, Buster Williams on bass, Billy Hart on drums, and of course, Maupin himself, a wind player who brings new meaning to following the breath. More »
Tricycle Community 2 comments

August 25, 2008

More is Always on the Way

I was on the bus to work the other day, when a taxi passed by bearing the slogan: ‘More is always on the way’. It turned out to be an advert for holidays to Turkey. More is always on the way? This could almost be the signature of the present consumer culture. In the present time, more is always regarded as desirable because we can never have enough. More »
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 24, 2008

En Route to the Convention

I've never been to a political convention before -- a new friend offered me a guest pass to this current democratic convention in denver, and I quickly said yes. I've often watched them on tv, with great interest...I even like the roll calls, with each state proclaiming its glory, "The commonwealth of Massachusetts, home of Gardner, chair capitol of the world..." I've enjoyed that note of belonging, of pride, even while recognizing it can go in many directions: it can be divisive, caught in the vanity of "us" and "them", the path of separation and the tragedy of creating and then disdaining the "other." Or perhaps we can have that pride yet hold it lightly, and not get caught up in labels and designations as our core identity. Perhaps we can move away from tribalism and egoism and hatred of the "other" through practicing inclusion and empathy and paying attention to all. It will be a very interesting few days. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 20, 2008

Olympic protesters to be re-educated

Two elderly women in China were just sentenced to a year of re-education. Their crime? Protesting at the the Olympics. The heads of the Jogye Order of Korean Buddhism convened to ask for an apology from the government for religious discrimination. Paul Ekman says right after the Olympics will be the perfect time for the Dalai Lama and Beijing to sit down for some good faith discussions. What a nice thought. Indeed it seems the current Dalai Lama has a repsonsibility to do all he can vis a vis Beijing in his lifetime because after he is gone, the opportunity will have passed. More »
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 19, 2008

Dharma Seed

Dharma Seed, a New Hampshire based non-profit that has been making the spoken teachings of Theravada Buddhism available to speakers of many different languages since the 1980s, has recently started converting its content from tapes and CDs to free audio files, available on their website at http://www.dharmaseed.org/. Listeners may download the talks or listen to them as streaming audio files online. After listening to a recent talk, “Five Guidelines for Practicing with Conflict” by Donald Rothberg, a member of the Executive faculty at Saybrook Graduate School in San Francisco and the Teacher’s Council of Spirit Rock Meditation Center of Woodacre, California, I immediately wanted more. At the recommendation of a Dharma Seed member, I’m turning next to Guy Armstrong, an insight meditation practitioner for over thirty-years and another member of Spirit Rock’s Teacher’s Council. Discover and share your own at http://www.dharmaseed.org/ And read more about "Five Guidelines for Practicing with Conflict:" More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 19, 2008

Where are the protesters?

The New York Times reports on the lack of protesters in Beijing's designated protest zones: Ten days into the Games, the government has yet to permit a single demonstration in any of the three official protest zones. According to a report Monday by Xinhua, the official news agency, 77 applications have been received since Aug. 1, from 149 people. All but three of those applications, however, were withdrawn after the authorities satisfactorily addressed the petitioners’ concerns, Xinhua said. Two of the remaining requests were turned down because the applicants failed to provide adequate information, and the last was rejected after the authorities determined it violated China’s laws on demonstrations. More »
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 18, 2008

Eat Less Beef II: Convenience

Yes, the ethanol-corn debate is boring. So grass makes better ethanol than corn. Yawn! We're saturated with this stuff. But read on for some eyebrow-raising numbers (maybe). Foreign Affairs, in an article updated in May 2008, pronounces: In 2008, 30 percent of the U.S. corn crop will be used for ethanol. Meanwhile the Nebraska Corn Board, on an undated page, says: Livestock continues to be the corn grower’s most stable and important customer, consuming about 45 percent of U.S. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 18, 2008

Cabbage Sutra

Sharon Salzberg's Cabbage Sutra, now on Huffington Post. More »
Tricycle Community 3 comments

August 18, 2008

Why I Love the Olympics

I have to admit that I have been glued to the TV in recent days watching the Olympics. I never realised before that I could care so much about cycling, gymnastics, or even sailing. The viewing experience has been sweetened by the fact that Team GB (Great Britain) has been winning many more medals than usual. My near obsession with the Olympics made me wonder why it is that I love sport so intensely. What is about watching someone run 26 miles in just over two hours or 100 metres in less than ten seconds (9.69 seconds in the case of Usain Bolt, the Jamaican gold medallist) that is so compelling? Is it vicarious exercise, enabling me to justify not bothering to keep fit? Or is it just a distraction, allowing me to live through the dreams and successes of others and so neglect my own aspirations? More »
Tricycle Community 3 comments

August 14, 2008

Notable Documentary: The Sacred Sites of the Dalai Lamas

I recently had the chance to see the documentary movie The Sacred Sites of the Dalai Lamas: A Pilgrimage to the Oracle Lake. Directed by Michael Wiese, Sacred Sites follows a group of pilgrims on their journey to Lhamo Lhatso, the Tibetan lake of visions. The voyage is told from the point of view of Steve Dancz, a film score composer, who incidentally is also the narrator, cameraman, and music composer for the documentary. He is joined by his teacher and guide Glenn Mullin, and Bhutanese monk Khenpo Tashi. With Dancz providing the voice of the awe-inspired traveler, and Mullin and Khenpo Tashi offering insight, they make their way through Nepal and Tibet, visiting a variety of temples, stupas, monastaries, and caves along the way. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 14, 2008

Nicholas Kristof: After Olympics, Tibet

More cautious optimism on some kind of solution: The Chinese leadership and the Tibetan government in exile have delicately discussed a possible visit by the Dalai Lama to China, nominally to commemorate the victims of the earthquake in Sichuan Province in May. That would be the first meeting between the Dalai Lama and Chinese leaders in more than 50 years and would give enormous impetus to resolving the Tibet question. The opportunity arises in part because of the Dalai Lama’s public acknowledgement last week for the first time that he could accept Communist Party rule for Tibet. More »
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 14, 2008

Ask Sylvia Boorstein and Ask Grgeory Kramer

Have a question for the Vipassana teachers Sylvia Boorstein or Gregory Kramer? Ask them here and here! More »
Tricycle Community 1 comment

August 13, 2008

Beijing Basks in Olympics as Dalai Lama Tours the Globe

His Holiness the Dalai Lama is now in France and of course was recently with John McCain, who surely needs some spiritual guidance. (Someone should make sure the Senator knows it's the Georgia with Tblisi, not Atlanta, that's involved.) The DL, incidentally, is McCain's senior, but not by much. The Dalai Lama fears for Tibet after the Olympics end and the world's attention wanders back from China to whatever else on the tube. More »
Tricycle Community 0 comments

August 13, 2008

London, Gate 6; Tokyo, Gate 11; Kushinagar, Gateless Gate

The Indian state of Uttar Pradesh wants an airport at Kushinagar to serve the "Buddhist circuit." Kushinagar is where the Buddha attained parinirvana. Wikipedia: As the scene of his death, [Kushiniagar] became one of the four holy places declared by the Buddha (in the Mahaparinibbana Sutta (ii. More »