Buddhism

  • The Path of Supreme Optimism Paid Member

    Today's Daily Dharma: Buddhism is a path of supreme optimism, for one of its basic tenets is that no human life or experience is to be wasted or forgotten, but all should be transformed into a source of wisdom and compassionate living. This is the connotation of the classical statement that sums up the goal of Buddhist life: "Transform delusion into enlightenment." On the everyday level of experience, Shin Buddhists speak of this transformation as "bits of rubble turn into gold." Taitetsu Unno, "Number One Fool" (Spring 2008) Sign up for Daily Dharma here. Read the full article: Number One Fool More »
  • Be a child of illusion Paid Member

    Each Friday, Acharya Judy Lief, teacher in the Shambhala tradition of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, comments on one of Atisha's 59 mind-training (Tib. lojong) slogans, which serve as the basis for a complete practice. Following each commentary Judy offers us a weekly practice. Here is Slogan 6 (each slogan provides links to the previous slogans, including a two-part discussion of their history and use in practice). I've been following along each week myself—a good way to stay grounded—rather ungrounded!—in my practice. 6. In postmeditation, be a child of illusion. Practice can be divided into two: meditation and postmeditation. More »
  • Less religion, more practice Paid Member

    The Los Angeles Times reports that Jack Kornfield is in Los Angeles this weekend to give a talk on CG Jung's journals at the Armand Hammer Museum and to lead a three-hour meditation retreat at InsightLA. Kornfield, a psychologist and former Thai monk, has written extensively about Western psychology and Buddhist mindfulness practice. Trudy Goodman, LAInsight's lead teacher, tells the Times, "I feel that Jack has changed Buddhism by being a pioneer for the inclusion of our emotional lives in the practice." More »
  • How many candles on the Buddha's birthday cake? Paid Member

    ... Or how many lamps in the Buddha's birthday tree? Either way, yesterday’s post about Vesak got me wondering: when was the Buddha born? As it turns out, there is a long scholarly discussion on the date of the Buddha’s birth (is anybody surprised?). The traditional date given in most Southeast Asian countries is 624 BCE. Scholars in the West and Asia have long rejected this date and, until recently, have placed the date somewhere between 567-563 BCE. These days, however, and increasing number of scholars place the date of the Buddha’s birth later—some even arguing that it could be up to one hundred years later than previously believed (463 BCE). More »
  • Traveling Jade Buddha Paid Member

    The Jade Buddha for Universal Peace is an intrepid traveler. The 10-foot (13-1/2 feet on its alabaster throne) 4-ton statue is now sitting pretty in Worcester, Massachusetts (above), in the parking lot of the Linh Son Temple, formerly a single-family home. When its tour of the North America, Europe and Asia is complete, the statue will make it's home at the Great Stupa of Universal Compassion, in Bendigo, Australia. It's official website reads: The purpose of exhibiting the Jade Buddha around the world is for everyone, irrespective of their religion, to take a moment to reflect upon peace; peace for the world; peace in their relationships; peace for their families and friends; peace at work; peace in their mind. More »
  • The benefits of mindfulness meditation... but what is it? Paid Member

    A recent article in UCLA's Daily Bruin reiterates a common theme that is repeated daily in news reports around the world: Meditation is good for reducing stress, and therefore is good for your health: Breathe in. Hold. Release. Repeat. Do you feel calmer? Some students have turned to meditation as a useful way to help study for finals and focus their attention.... Researchers at the UCLA Laboratory of Neuro Imaging found that daily meditation helped certain areas of the brain to grow denser. Researchers studied 22 test subjects who had been meditating on a daily basis for at least five years and compared their MRI scans to those of a control group who do not meditate. More »