Meditation

  • Himalayan Buddhist Art 101: Meditational Deities Paid Member

    Buddhist practice and Buddhist art have been inseparable in the Himalayas ever since Buddhism arrived to the region in the eighth century. But for the casual observer it can be difficult to make sense of the complex iconography. Not to worry—Himalayan art scholar Jeff Watt is here to help. In this "Himalayan Buddhist Art 101" series, Jeff is making sense of this rich artistic tradition by presenting weekly images from the Himalayan Art Resources archives and explaining their roles in the Buddhist tradition. Last week we explored gods and deities in Tantric Buddhism, and this week we will move the discussion onward to meditational deities. Himalayan Buddhist Art 101: Meditational Deities More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Mobs, Politics, and...Lemurs Paid Member

    Buddhist monks were all over the international news this week, and most of it was not good. Last weekend thousands of Sri Lankans, led by Buddhist monks, stormed a mosque in Dambulla, Sri Lanka, destroying furniture and exposing themselves. The day before, the mosque had been firebombed by an unknown person. Sri Lankan officials have now promised to demolish and relocate the mosque, which the monks alleged had been built illegally on sacred Buddhist ground. Mosque board members responded that the mosque had been there for 50 years—30 years before the area was declared a Buddhist sacred zone. More »
  • Tricycle Talks: Jenny Phillips on The Dhamma Brothers Paid Member

    Jenny Phillips is a cultural anthropologist, psychotherapist, and a documentary filmmaker. She is the director of this month's selection at the Tricycle Film Club, The Dhamma Brothers, a film that follows a 10-day meditation retreat in Donaldson Correctional Facility, a maximum-security prison outside Birmingham, Alabama. Listen to Tricycle's Sam Mowe speak with Phillips about the meditation program at Donaldson, the effects that the program has on participants, and the possibility of meditation entering other prisons. More »
  • Meditation Month, Day 27: Drowsiness Paid Member

    I am very good at falling asleep. This is probably because I am almost always tired. And I'm never more tired than when I meditate. Especially if I meditate at the end of the day, I'm so excited to have 5 or 10 (or if I'm lucky, 20) minutes of nonactivity that I'm immediately in relaxation mode. As soon as I relax, I'm drowsy. As soon as I'm drowsy, my head and body begin to pitch forward; a few minutes after that, I'm lucky if I'm not dead asleep. My mind during meditation: My body during meditation: More »
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    Meditation Month: Practicing Patience Paid Member

    I consider myself to be a very patient person. I'm patient with my friends, my family, my colleagues—I'm patient while waiting for a red light to change, and patient when the bank representative puts me on hold for 13 minutes. But I'm not patient with myself. If I do not learn something quickly, or I do not consider myself to be "good" at an activity, I throw in the towel almost immediately (it's why I don't play tennis or pool). This desire to improve by leaps and bounds has been challenging during meditation month. I expected that the more I sat, the easier it would get—actually, I thought the more I sat the better I would get at sitting. But so far it has been a roller coaster of good days, bad days, and worse days. More »
  • Meditation Month: Day 9 Paid Member

    There is only one way to walk in New York City: mindfully. Actually, let me back up. You don't have to walk mindfully in New York, but if you don't you're roadkill. (In fact, the main reason that you should walk mindfully is because so many people don't.) Most of the time you have to be prepared to move quickly, to avoid other walkers, taxis, bicyclists, or a crazy person. At other times you need to exercise patience—waiting for the next subway or slowly shuffling through a bottle neck situation at Grand Central during rush hour. Either way, if you find yourself walking in New York, Peter Doobinin had some good advice in today's Daily Dharma: More »