• Buddha Buzz: Dating, Drugs, and Death Paid Member

    First off, Happy Lunar New Year! Welcome to the year of the dragon. As befits such a year celebrating a creature who is often associated with longevity, some Buddhist monks in Japan have a similar concern in mind: from the Japan Times, "Matchmaking Service gives Buddhist monks a boost in dating market." From the article: In Japan, it is typical for relatives of monks—especially head monks—to inherit caretaker duties of their temples. But because of a lack of successors, the monks have become desperate to find wives in order to preserve this tradition and save their temples from being closed or integrated. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Buddhism and the Internet, Friends or Foes? Paid Member

    The Internet is a many-headed beast. A many-headed beast that sometimes seems like it's eating everything, my free time being the first item on the menu. Websites like YouTube, StumbleUpon, Facebook and Twitter are so addictive—and some of the time, so mindless—that they can suck even the most seasoned Buddhist practitioner into a vortex of websites, blogs, and profiles, where the most profound of insights lose out to...are those pictures of baby animals? Let's put it this way: if the Internet could be summed up into one word, it would be distraction. More »
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    Best Spiritual Writing 2012 Paid Member

    Two articles from Tricycle, Noa Jones's "Where the Buddha Woke Up" and features editor Andrew Cooper's "The Debacle," were just published in the Penguin anthology The Best Spiritual Writing 2012. The anthology also contains an article by Tricycle contributing editor Pico Iyer from Portland magazine. Since the Jewish High Holy Days are upon us, we thought we'd include here the opening section from "The Debacle," a uniquely Jewish start to a Buddhist essay. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Buddhism & Interfaith Dialogue Paid Member

    The September 12 issue of The New Yorker features T.K. Nakagaki, a Japanese monk and former abbot of the New York Buddhist Church, and his work organizing a floating 9/11 lantern ceremony on the Hudson River. The article takes a look at interfaith dialogue in light of 9/11-commemoration gatherings. After Rudy Giuliani failed to invite a single Buddhist to a prayer event at Yankee Stadium that included all other major faiths of NYC, Nakagaki convinced the city's Buddhist Council to make some noise about the omission. From "All Together Now": More »
  • How to Be Good: A moral philosopher breaks down the self Paid Member

    You are in a terrible accident. Your body is fatally injured, as are the brains of your two identical-triplet brothers. Your brain is divided into two halves, and into each brother's body one half is successfully transplanted. After the surgery, each of the two resulting people believes himself to be you, seems to remember living your life, and has your character. (This is not as unlikely as it sounds: already, living brains have been surgically divided, resulting in two separate streams of consciousness.) What has happened? Have you died, or have you survived? And if you have survived who are you? Are you one of these people? Both? Or neither? What if one of the transplants fails, and only one person with half your brain survives? That seems quite different—but the death of one person could hardly make a difference to the identity of another. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: How to fall asleep on an airplane Paid Member

    Having trouble sleeping? Try meditating! In a recent piece on The New York Time's Opinionator blog, "How to Sleep on a Plane," Virginia Heffernan writes: More »