China

  • Buddhist Monk wins gold medal for horseback riding in Asian Games Paid Member

    Last weekend a Japanese Buddhist monk named Kenki Sato won the "eventing individual" gold medal at the Asian Games held in Guangzhou, China. After winning Sato discussed how his Buddhist practice "gels" with his love for horseback riding and his dream to eventually compete in the Olympic Games. From The Chakra report: According to Sato, horse riding “gels well with Buddhism” and thus he has been horse riding since the age of 7. He said that Buddhism is so important to him that he tends to naturally get attracted to activities that other Buddhist monks also take part in, which includes horse riding. He takes both horse riding and being a monk very seriously. More »
  • The Dalai Lama wants to step down from his political role but keep his religious one Paid Member

    The Tibetan parliament-in-exile next meets in March in Dharamsala, and the Dalai Lama is expected to announce his desire to resign from his political duties as head of the Tibetan government while retaining his religious ones at that time. (In religious terms, the Dalai Lama is not the highest-ranking lama in Tibetan Buddhism, nor is he even the head of the Gelugpa school of which he is a part. That responsibility falls to the Ganden Tripa.) More »
  • Thousands of Tibetan students protest China's plan to use only Mandarin in Tibetan schools Paid Member

    Thousands of Tibetan students in western China are protesting against a proposed plan to eliminate or curb the use of Tibetan in schools. The plan advocates switching to Mandarin, China's official language. Via the New York Times: The protests are among the largest in Tibetan areas since the March 2008 uprising that began in Lhasa and spread across the Tibetan plateau. But unlike those protests, these have been peaceful and have involved mostly students. A protest against the proposed policies was also held in Beijing on Friday afternoon, drawing hundreds of Tibetan students at a prominent university that specializes in teaching ethnic minorities, according to witness reports and photographs. More »
  • A Day for Bodhidharma Paid Member

    You can learn a lot of things perusing the Treeleaf Zendo message boards, including that today is Bodhidharma Day. What do we do on Bodhidharma Day? We sit, in order to honor the Zen ancestor who brought Zen from India to China. Bodhidharma is usually presented a bad-tempered barbarian who sat facing a wall meditating for nine years. In order to always stay awake, he cut off his eyelids, and tea plants sprang from them where they landed. Yum! Here are some Bodhidharma Day recipes. If you're in China, you could visit the recently unearthed Bodhidharma Stupa. More »
  • Massive Rally in Support of Karmapa to Take Place Sunday Paid Member

    When Ogyen Trinley Dorje, one of the two lamas recognized as the 17th Karmapa, escaped from the Chinese in 2000 he was granted asylum in India.  However, due to pressure from the Chinese government, the Indian government quickly put him under close watch and put heavy restrictions on his ability to travel.  This week, as the Karmapa is giving teachings in Dharamsala, a huge rally in Sikkim is being organized by his supporters to put pressure on the Indian government to lift these travel restrictions so that he can return to his home monastery Rumtek, which is in Sikkim.  For more information on the rally, please visit www.karmapatorumtek.org More »
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    Chinese Honor Student Chooses Monasticism over MIT Paid Member

    A "mathematics genius" in China has decided to become a Buddhist monk instead of accepting a full ride to MIT. examiner.com has the story: Liu Zhiyu received a diploma this past summer from the School of Mathematical Sciences at PKU and than applied for and was offered a full scholarship to MIT. However, just the last minute as his parents were ready to send him off to the states to study at MIT Liu changed his mind. Liu decided instead to head for Longquan Temple in Beijing's Haidian district to prepare to become a Buddhist monk. It has been reported that Liu's father, who teaches physics at the high school that Liu attended in his hometown of Wuhan, Hubei province, told the Beijing Times the family was strongly opposed to Liu's choice. Liu's father said he felt desperate and his wife had become ill because of their son's decision. More »