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October 29, 2008

Killing the Buddha again

KtB is back! Plus the blog. More »
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October 29, 2008

Ken Wilber at Buddhist Geeks

Check out Ken Wilber's two-part talk with Buddhist Geeks. The BG's do a lot of great interviews, and you gotta love how they fit Ken Wilber into the uniform over there -- he just needs to flatten his glasses a bit: Thanks to Hokai at h~log for the heads-up. More »
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October 29, 2008

Office of Dalai Lama clarifies "giving up" remark

The office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama offered a statement clarifying his "giving up" remark. They say about what you would expect them to say, and it should provide comfort to many. Thanks to Danny Fisher as ever for the pointer. Have you checked out Buddhamania on Buddhaworld? It's cool, and it very appropriately gives props to the The Wost Horse. More »
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October 29, 2008

Buddhism and Politics

Beliefnet looks at Buddhism and politics: So American Buddhists aren't likely to become a political machine or a crucial swing vote any time soon. But as the religion born in the East carves its place in the West, many Buddhists are making a mark in U.S. politics, including this year's presidential race. A significant number of Buddhist immigrants who fled communist regimes in Southeast Asia tend to be politically conservative, which could help Republican candidate Sen. John McCain. But a solid majority of American Buddhists are converts, who tend to be liberal, and many back Democrat Barack Obama. You may have read about the troubles of the Cambodian temple in Long Beach, California. More »
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October 28, 2008

Don't give up

Danny Fisher has a follow-up post to the Dalai Lama's statement that he is "giving up" on gaining autonomy for Tibet within the People's Republic. Of the DL's comment, Nicholas Kristof of the Times writes, "I don’t take that with the tone of finality that some do. . ." And the entertaining and thoughtful Bhikkhu's Blog is back after a summer-long hiatus! What's happened in the world since June 13th, and why was Ajahn Punnadhammo gone for so long? Something to do with a cup of coffee and an "inexcusable lapse of mindfulness." More »
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October 28, 2008

Tricycle's Winter 2008 issue

Tricycle's Winter 2008 issue will hit your newsstands soon but you can read two of its articles now: Karma in Action We are what we do by Andrew Olendzki Peace on the Street A Harlem zendo fights to save lives by Joan Duncan Oliver. More »
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October 27, 2008

Buddhists for Obama

Spotted a couple of these around the web lately. Should have known The Worst Horse is to blame! Any Buddhists for McCain bumper stickers out there? More »
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October 27, 2008

The Dalai Lama says he has given up on autonomy for Tibet

Precious Metal reports: The Dalai Lama has given up on efforts to convince Beijing to grant greater autonomy for Tibet. James at The Buddhist Blog has an interesting post on gold scratched off Buddha statues in Burma. He asks the very reasonable question, Why are there gold Buddhas in Burma? (He also has a post on Intentional Chocolate, which is as good as he says!) More on the research behind Intentional Chocolate here. More »
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October 27, 2008

Blogging from Buddhaland #3

Under the Bodhi Tree with Thich Nhat Hanh Bodhgaya - October 21-22 Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) looked amazingly refreshed on the heels of a 7 hour bus ride from Banaras to Bodhgaya, site of the Bodhi Tree under which the Buddha sat until he had achieved his long sought enlightenment.  Accompanied by a delegation of monks, nuns, and lay practitioners numbering almost 300 people, the 84 year old Thay walked mindfully in procession toward the Mahabodhi Temple on this crisp sunny morning.  His path was adorned by lines of various monks and school children bearing flowers, and above them large banners bidding a warm welcome... a scene almost suggesting the arrival of a spiritual rockstar. As Thay walked gracefully and slowly ahead, the lines of followers behind him closed in fast with various enthusiasts running to catch up with him. Some slight jockeying for better positioning subtly ensued. After a formal welcoming from the Sri Lankan delegation of monastics, Thay and his group circumambulated the Temple and the surprisingly green and healthy looking Bodhi Tree, and took their seats in preparation for the morning Dharma Talk. Additional guests at the event included about 50 young students from the Antioch College Buddhist Studies Program led by Robert Pryor since 1979, and other students who are studying Tibetan Buddhism at the nearby Root Institute. More »
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October 27, 2008

Blogging from Buddhaland #2

The Four Noble Inter-Truths Thich Nhat Hanh at Sarnath, October 21-22, 2008 No fewer than 50 monks and nuns from Plum Village, and another 50 more monks from the local Tibetan Institute, as well as 200 lay members of his delegation, and other lucky onlookers sat on the landscaped lawn opposite the imposing Dhamek Stupa in Sarnath to hear Thich Nhat Hanh (Thay) speak about the Four Noble Truths.  Over 100 feet high and delicately carved with geometrical and floral patterns, the stupa marks the area where the Buddha gave his first sermon, not coincidentally, on the Four Noble Truths. The Dhamek Stupa has special significance to modern Buddhism as it is the site where in 1835 British archeologist Alexander Cunningham had his hunch confirmed Sarnath was a significant place in the life of the mysterious "Booda," and proceeded to uncover the many sites of Buddhaland and their significance. Built in the spot of many earlier constructions as excavations reveal ancient brickwork, the stupa was partially destroyed by Moslems in 1194, and when workmen were removing more stone from it in 1794 they broke into a casket later discovered to have contained remnants of the Buddha's remains. More »
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October 23, 2008

Peter Fenner drops by Tricycle

Peter Fenner, developer of the Radiant Mind course in nondual awareness, stopped by Tricycle to chat with the editors today. Fenner, an Australian currently living in France, studied with Lama Thubten Yeshe in the 1970s and ’80s, completing a Ph.D. in 1983 during the course of a 9-year turn as a celibate monk. Here’s the latest: Guru Tulku Rinpoche of Tawang Monastery in northeast India has invited Fenner to teach there, tentatively beginning next fall. We were intrigued—an Australian teaching Buddhism in India. The dharma comes full circle… For more on Radiant Mind, check out their website. And here’s an interview with Fenner on nondual awareness. More »
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October 23, 2008

Saffron Revolution Talk at Rutgers

Received this press release today: NEWS RELEASE The media is also invited to attend “teach-ins” during the day; contact Douglas Irvin, 973/353-1260 for schedule FOR FIRST TIME, SAFFRON REVOLUTION MONKS WILL SPEAK OUT ABOUT 2007 UPRISING IN BURMA/MYANMAR Rutgers University in Newark Will Host Free Public Forum Oct. 29, 2008 (Newark, N.J., Oct. 21, 2008)  -- The Saffron Revolution Monks of Burma/Myanmar will speak out Oct. 29 about their experiences during the peaceful popular uprising of 2007, and the brutal state crackdown, which left hundreds dead and many more jailed.  This is the first time the monks will discuss the uprising during a public forum, which will be held from 2:30 - 3:50 p.m., Oct. 29, in Hill Hall Room 101 at Rutgers University, 360 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Newark.  The monks will answer questions from the audience during this free public forum, which is sponsored by the Rutgers Center for the Study of Genocide and Human Rights (CGHR).  More »
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October 22, 2008

Two reasons to celebrate Inquiring Mind

Inquiring Mind, the wonderful and whimsical Berkeley-based publication, has two big reasons to celebrate its twenty-fifth anniversary. One is its new twenty-fifth anniversary issue (pictured) and the other is the publication of The Best of Inquiring Mind: 25 Years of Dharma, Drama, and Uncommon Insight. Both are worth savoring in detail, so get your copies now! More »
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October 22, 2008

Meditate and Destroy

This film about Dharma punk Noah Levine is coming to Times Square and is also being silmulcast on the web. Press release reproduced below: MEDITATE AND DESTROY on Friday Oct 24 @ 9 p.m. at the Times Square Arts Center. MEDITATE AND DESTROY provides an intimate and dynamic portrait of an unconventional Buddhist teacher and counselor. This powerful 80 minute documentary shows how author Noah Levine (Dharma Punx, Against the Stream) uses his personal experience and punk-rock sensibilities to connect with young people within juvenile halls and urban centers around the country. More »
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October 22, 2008

Blogging from Buddhaland

New Delhi, India - October 19-20 India is an assault to the senses from the moment you land-- the worn enclosed walkway on the jetport as you deplane seems unchanged from the first days of jet travel, and the unmistakable acrid smell of insecticide and industrial cleaning solvent are the first welcome to the paradox that is India.  But once inside the terminal, one must be impressed by India's admirable attempt to create a modern world-class international airport; the lighting is soft, the marble corridors clean and well constructed, and the floor to ceiling glass offers unimpeded views of the pandemonium that awaits you outside baggage claim. My bags safely retrieved, and armed with my pre-paid taxi ticket, I venture out of the terminal into the chaos of night.  A hot wind is blowing and the tall overhead halogens are lighting up the kumba mela of flying insects that fill the dark sky. Swirls of black crows make the night sky even blacker. More »
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October 21, 2008

Tibetans in Nepal

The indefatigable Mikel Dunham--writer, photographer, journalist, blogger and adventurer--has passed out digital cameras to Tibetan refugees living in Nepal, asking the fledgling photojournalists to record their everyday lives. He hopes to pull together enough photos for a book but until then, posts them on his site. Apparently, writes Dunham, a bit of a competition has sprung up among the refugees so expect more and better to come. More »
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October 21, 2008

Thaksin Shinawatra convicted in Thailand, but he's in England

Ex-Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra was convicted of corruption in a Bangkok court and sentenced to two years in prison. Good thing for him he's not in the country right now. It may just be pandering to the protesters: Although the infraction was relatively minor and the details of the case obscure to many Thais, the court’s decision set the tone for further confrontation between the current government, which has links to Mr. Thaksin, and anti-government protesters who have barricaded and occupied the prime minister’s office compound since August, leading the government to conduct its business in Bangkok’s former international airport. Protesters cheered when the verdict was read. More »
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October 20, 2008

Beijing's New Buddhist Academy; Burma's Resolve

Beijing is building a general Tibetan Buddhist Academy in Tibet. It's claimed to be the first of its kind but the real idea is to continue the process of wresting control of Buddhism from the lamas and into the hands of the "appalling old waxworks" in Beijing. More »
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October 20, 2008

Land-Use Reform in China; 365 Days of Trash

Rural reform is a big part of communism -- take the huge estates, break them up into plots for small farmers to work, and so on, but the state owns the land. China is moving in the opposite direction and starting to re-privatize the land. (In North Korea, where people are starving, this would have a big impact. Fields that people own seem to produce more.) China's communism is very pragmatic and based on money these days rather than ideology. Money will keep them in power. Beijing wants farmers to consume: Increasing incomes in the countryside is a major part of the government’s effort to raise China’s domestic consumer spending at a time the overall economy is slowing. More than 700 million people are still designated rural inhabitants, yet their spending is minimal. More »
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October 17, 2008

With more monks safely in jail, China lures tourists back to Tibet

In Tibet, more monks are going to jail: Eight Buddhist monks convicted of bombing a government building in Tibet during an anti-government uprising in March have been sentenced to prison, two of them for life, a judge said Tuesday. The monks were sentenced at the People's Court in Chamdo, a Tibetan prefecture, after being convicted of setting off a bomb at the building in Gyanbe township, said Gang Weilai, the judge who presided over the case. Gyanbe is about 855 miles (1,375 kilometers) east of Lhasa, Tibet's capital, where peaceful protests against Chinese rule erupted into violence in March. Gyurmey Dhondup and Kalsang Tsering were sentenced to life in prison while the others received sentences of between five and 15 years, Gang said in a telephone interview. More »