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February 26, 2008

Global Seed Vault

The global seed vault opens (or closes?) in Norway. (So Titan A.E.!) I wish I lived in Norway. LONGYEARBYEN, Norway, February 26, 2008 (ENS) - The Svalbard Global Seed Vault opened today on a remote island in the Arctic Circle, receiving the first shipments of what will be a collection of 100 million seeds from more than 100 countries. Unique varieties of the African and Asian food staples maize, rice, wheat, cowpea, and sorghum as well as European and South American varieties of eggplant, lettuce, barley, and potato are the first deposits in the icy vault. More »
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February 26, 2008

From the Blogs

There's so much great stuff to be found out there on the Buddhist blogs. Here's just a tiny taste: Anyone planning to be in New Haven, Connecticut on April 11th should check out Danny Fisher's lecture, "What Does a Buddhist Chaplain Do? More »
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February 26, 2008

Thaksin to return to Thailand; Monlam Chenmo

Deposed Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra is expected back in Thailand February 28th. After President Bush imposed fresh sanctions on Burma's business interests, The Irrawaddy says Burma's Asian neighbors, who are bigger trading partners than the U.S., need to do the same. Reuters on Monlam Chenmo, Tibet's Great Prayer Festival. More on Monlam from Phayul.com. More »
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February 26, 2008

Gandhi

We've received a lot of comments about Gandhi, who appears in our current issue, on our Who Are We? page. We've moved all these comments over here to open up the discussion. - Philip Ryan, Web Editor More »
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February 26, 2008

Krishnamurti, Chogyam Trungpa, and Fleet Maull

A series of YouTubes, courtesy of Hokai. Krishnamurti speaks with Chogyam Trungpa (5 videos) Fleet Maull on Integral Peacemaker Training More »
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February 25, 2008

Tibetan Olympics; More from the Pew Report

More sanctions on Burmese businesses from the U.S. Disillusioned with the Beijing Olympics? Try the Tibetan Olympics! The games will take place in Dharamsala from may 15th to 25th. The torch relay is currently in Taiwan, with Miss Tibet on hand to watch. The New York Times looked at the Pew Report and found that 25% of American adults have changed from the religion of their birth to another religion or no religion. More »
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February 25, 2008

Pew Forum on Religion in the U.S.

The Pew Forum survey of religion in the U.S. has arrived. The U.S. is said to be 0.7% Buddhist. More to follow on this. More »
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February 25, 2008

Blogisattva Award Winners 2008

Just in time for the Oscars, this year's Blogisattva Award winners have been announced! Congratulations to all the winners, including Tricycle's own Jeff Wilson, whose "Addressing Comments from the Meditation Thread" won Best Post of the Year! More »
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February 24, 2008

Washington Post on Burma

The Washington Post joins the chorus of voices condemning Burma's false progress. More »
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February 23, 2008

Which Religion Will "Win"?

Alan Wolfe writes about worldwide religious market share in the March issue of The Atlantic: Hindus and Buddhists together make up 20 percent of the world’s people, and high birthrates in the countries in which they are dominant suggest that this proportion will grow. There's not much more on Buddhism, but there is an interesting graphic plotting countries relative to wealth (the x-axis) and religiosity (y). As usual, much of the preoccupation of the article is with the rapid growth of Islam and the United States' atypical religiosity compared to western Europe. Does secularism grow as wealth increases? It doesn't seem to in this country, anyway. More »
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February 23, 2008

Buddhism in Vietnam and England; Buddhist Center in Kashmir

Buddhism has had rocky times in communist Vietnam, but now the state-sanctioned church is flexing its muscles at the expense of Catholics. But it's very different in London, where Cambodian Buddhists use a two-bedroom flat as their temple and community center. They now have no place to gather, after a recent fire. In India, the government set up a Buddhist center in Kashmir and cited the religion's influence on Mahatma Gandhi, and value as an antidote to the extremism that plagues the region. And in gratuitous celebrity news, Orlando Bloom's squeeze Miranda Kerr discusses the couple's mutual love of Buddhism. More »
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February 23, 2008

Beijing vs. the Tibetan language

The Tibetan language is said to be under siege by deliberate Chinese policy: The Chinese government is neglecting and actively undermining the Tibetan language as part of continuing efforts to dilute the region's unique culture, a human rights group said on Thursday. Schools are forcing Tibetan children to learn China's national language, Mandarin, at a younger and younger age and are failing to support use of Tibetan in official fields, the Free Tibet Campaign said in a new report. "China's insistence on Chinese language in Tibetan schools has failed a generation of Tibetans who now lag behind the rest of China in terms of basic literacy," the group's Matt Whitticase said in an emailed statement. Beijing hits back. More »
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February 22, 2008

On Being and Not Being a Buddhist

Woodmoor Village points us to this post on the Washington Post's On Faith section. I am not a Buddhist. I've never told anyone that I am a Buddhist and have in fact denied the title on more than one occasion. Even though I have been circling around the stupa for the last ten years, I have never made any formal or official commitment to the Buddha sāsana. I've never sown a rakusu or received a "dharma name." I am, as of this moment, a freelance wanderer through the six realms of samsara. More »
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February 22, 2008

Bhutan in National Geographic; Burma News

National Geographic has a piece in the current issue about Bhutan, with pretty pictures. Burma fights back at Rambo. Lonely Planet is criticized for its Burma guidebook. The Boston Globe on the world's conscience and Burma. More »
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February 21, 2008

Urgent Appeal for Burma Protest Leaders

From Amnesty International. Danny Fisher has the details. More »
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February 21, 2008

Major U.S. Religion Survey to be Released Monday

A major Pew Research Center study on religion is coming soon: On Monday, Feb. 25, at noon, the Pew Forum will release the first report of a landmark survey that details the religious affiliation of the American public and explores the remarkable dynamism taking place in the U.S. religious marketplace. Based on interviews conducted in English and Spanish with a representative sample of more than 35,000 adults, the survey includes detailed information on religious affiliation and provides estimates of the size of religious groups that are as small as three-tenths of 1 percent of the adult population. More »
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February 21, 2008

Ram Dass on Knowledge

Information is just bits of data. Knowledge is putting them together— wisdom is transcending them. - Ram Dass, One Liners A Manual for a Spiritual Life More »
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February 20, 2008

Killing the Buddha

2001: KtB: The Buddha is dead. 2008: The Buddha: KtB is dead. Vaya con dios. More »
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February 20, 2008

"Dive-bar Dharma" in Salon

Salon has an interesting article called Dive-bar Dharma about Ethan Nichtern and Noah Levine and the new generation of Buddhists (or at least one of the new generations) in New York. The article mentions the graying of American dharma centers, and we should note this is true of all -- or maybe we should most -- churches and religions across the industrialized world, so the solution to this problem is by no means unique to Buddhism or even Buddhism in the West. More »
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February 20, 2008

Makha Bucha Day, Wat Dhammakaya, and the Metta Center

Makha Bucha Day is a major holiday in Thailand and it falls tomorrow, February 21. According to Buddhist scriptures, nine months after Siddharttha Gautama attained enlightenment, on the full-moon day of the third lunar month, a total of 1,250 disciples of the Buddha from various places spontaneously assembled at Veluvan in Magadha to pay respect to the Buddha. This meeting is considered very significant in Buddhist history because first, it was done without previous appointment and was therefore a miracle, and secondly, all the disciples had been ordained by the Buddha himself and had attained sainthood and become arahants. Wat Dhammakaya's website will let you experience Makha Bucha from the comfort of your own home. More »