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February 01, 2009

The Trouble with Tulkus

Michael Powell in the New York Times looks at the problematic issue of the Dalai Lama's reincarnation: There is little linear about lama succession in Tibet. And now, as the 14th Dalai Lama journeys into his 74th year, the question of how to pick his successor has come to preoccupy both him and his followers, as Tibet stands at an ever more precarious political pass. More »
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January 28, 2009

Two Bits

Why do Buddhist Pray to Idols? and a post on A Buddhist Catholic Blog with links to Reggie Ray talks. More »
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January 28, 2009

Power Abused, Giant Buddha Used

Thanks to Konchog and his nose for news: On one occasion, Dr. Novello purchased a heavy statue of Buddha during a shopping excursion in Troy, N.Y., then required a Health Department security guard to move it into her apartment, and then a few days later move it to another spot in her home because she didn’t like how it looked, according to the report, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times. More »
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January 27, 2009

Online Meditation Timer

You can download one for your iPod too, thanks to Treeleaf Zendo. (And Barbara for the tip.) More »
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January 26, 2009

New Year pictures, Dalai Lama's Olympic woes

Images of the New Year here. The Dalai Lama cancels a visit to the Special Olympics World Winter Games in Idaho, apparently under pressure from a certain government, and is uninvited to the Winter Olympics for the same reason. More »
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January 26, 2009

3D Sex and Zen

Ummmmm... Ordinarily the use and abuse of Zen as a marketing term doesn't bother me too much, but this one really seems beyond the pale. (Danny Fisher and the Buddhist Blog and The Worst Horse -- who is on top of this latest one -- and a few others have done good work documenting this.) "3D Sex and Zen"? It's a Hong Kong-made film said to be an update of the popular "Sex and Zen". More »
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January 26, 2009

Year of the Ox

And a bull market. UPDATE: I'm told it's a bear market. More »
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January 24, 2009

Please Vote for Me

I saw a very sweet and moving documentary last night called Please Vote for Me. It takes place in Wuhan in central China where a third grade class is being allowed to vote for their hall monitor for the first time -- Previously the teachers chose them. There are three candidates, the incumbent Luo Lei (appointed by the teacher for the past two years), the confident and well-coached Cheng Cheng (at left below), and the dark horse Xaiofei (in the center below). Luo Lei's parents are both police officers. Cheng Cheng is raised by his mother and stepfather, while Xiaofei's single mother, an employee of the school, struggles to offer her daughter the coaching and encouragement the boys are receiving. All are of course only children. It's very moving to see these kids, all around 8 years old, deal with the brutal realities of what is essentially a popularity contest. More »
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January 23, 2009

Dalai Lama to fund 'Neuroscience of Compassion'

Frequent Tricycle contributor Allan Hunt Badiner points us to this article on the Dalai Lama's latest: The Dalai Lama is teaming up with Stanford University and a multi-millionaire professor to launch a new research centre dedicated to compassion and altruism. "His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, provided $150,000 in seed money for the center -- the largest sum he has ever given for a scientific venture -- and has agreed to return to Stanford for a future visit," reads a Stanford press release. ... It seems the centre's goals involve not only investigating how the brain deals with compassion and altruism, but also leveraging those findings to improve people's lives. More »
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January 23, 2009

Dharmacore on Treeleaf Zendo, Danny Fisher on the Dalai Lama

Dharmacore discusses the online jukai of Treeleaf Zendo, and the irrepressible Danny Fisher reports on the Dalai Lama: His Holiness will step down if Tibet is granted autonomy. More »
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January 22, 2009

Beautiful Buddha Statues from China plus other stuff

Some beautiful photos of Chinese Buddhas from a Herald-Trib piece on an exhibition in Singapore. The one at right is said to be from the Northern Qi Dynasty (550-77 CE). "Serenity in Stone: The Qingzhou Discovery," an exhibition of 35 sculptures now at the Peranakan Museum in Singapore, highlights the rapid stylistic change in representing the Buddha that took place over a 50-year period when the Northern Wei dynasty (386-534) disintegrated and gave rise to the Eastern Wei dynasty (534-550) and Northern Qi dynasty (550-577). More »
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January 22, 2009

Zazen, Tea, Go

A nice post on zazen mudras by Kyoshin, from whose blog the image at right is stolen. If you have some time to burn (or boil?), don't miss this tea ceremony post on the Half-Dipper. And while youre at it, learn to play Go along with Al Billings. Better yet, if you're a experience Go player, drop by and give him some advice. More »
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January 22, 2009

Now THIS is the change we were waiting for

Shutting down Guantanamo and other black sites: President Obama is expected to sign executive orders Thursday directing the Central Intelligence Agency to shut what remains of its network of secret prisons and ordering the closing of the Guantánamo detention camp within a year, government officials said. More »
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January 22, 2009

Inauguration kata

Word has it that Richard Blum (husband of Senator Dianne Feinstein), who served as an escort to the country's new first lady during Tuesday's ceremony, added a Tibetan flair to the proceedings. In a Tuesday afternoon email to a high-ranking Tibetan diplomat, Blum wrote: I had a kata at my house that His Holiness had given me. I offered it to President Obama before the ceremony. I said that I could get it delivered to him later. He said, no, that he was going to take it and have it with him; in fact, it was in his pocket when he was sworn-in. More »
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January 22, 2009

From the latest New Yorker

Remember the Seinfeld episode where Elaine couldn't figure out what the New Yorker cartoon meant? (I typed the caption in below because it wasn't reading well in my crummy scan job.) "Well, all I can say, sir, is that it's a darn good thing for Barton, Franklin, Battersby, Klempstein & Pierce that you decided not to become a Zen monk!" [© Gahan Wilson, from the Jan. 26, 2009 New Yorker] More »
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January 21, 2009

Some from the Blogs

Two from Danny Fisher: UN seeks access to Burmese refugees, and Human Rights Now: 14 Reasons for Accountability. Right on, rev! The plight of the Burmese dissidents, from the New York Times (thanks to Barbara's Buddhism Blog.) Prison sentences fo 59 and 68 years for criticizing the government. And the Urban and married Monk has migrated from LiveJournal to Blogger. As if you needed a reason to drop by! More »
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January 20, 2009

O'Bama

When the CNN live feed failed us at 11:30, the Tricycle staff headed around the corner to the Emerald Pub. As Bono says, add an apostrophe and he's Irish, too, so we thought it made sense. We packed in with just about everyone else in the neighborhood, whose mood I can only describe as jubilant. Picture of the day? Tricycle contributing editor and founding art director Frank Olinsky points us to this from his pal Jay Babcock's online magazine Arthur. More »
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January 20, 2009

Left out of the inaugural address

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness. We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers. Text here. More »
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January 17, 2009

Gary Snyder at the New York Public Libary on January 31st

GARY SNYDER The Pulitzer Prize-Winning Poet Reads and Talks About Origins and Influences And the Poets of His Generation Saturday, January 31 3:00-5:00 p.m. Introduction by Literary Essayist Eliot Weinberger, Author of "An Elemental Thing" THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY South Court Auditorium Entrance on First Floor (Fifth Ave. Side) Take South Court Elevator to "A" (Auditorium) More »
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January 15, 2009

Sitting Online

Molly De Shong at Shambhala Sun Space discusses a 90-day meditation course from Vipassana Fellowship. The courses are lead by Andrew Quernmore. VF has been offering courses online since 1997. In February, Tricycle will be teaming up with Zen teachers around the country to offer our 90-day Zen meditation challenge. The Tricycle staff will begin the 90 days on February 23rd, and that same day Roshi Pat Enkyo O'Hara will kick things off with the first of her series of talks on Dogen's Genjokoan, which you can watch online. Stay tuned for more! Speaking of sitting online, Tree Leaf Zendo, home of daily online sit-alongs with Jundo Cohen since March 2007, is moving to Beliefnet! More »