News

  • Buddha Buzz: Warm and Fuzzy with Ram Dass Paid Member

    Well, boys and girls, the discussion ain't over. (As it shouldn't be.) Soto Zen priest and author James Ishmael Ford has added his voice into the mix of American Buddhist teachers who are remarking on the Joshu Sasaki Roshi sex scandal. Unlike some of the other commentaries, which read with more passion than careful analysis, Ford takes a helpful step backward to look at the American Zen picture as a whole. As he writes, "Sex isn't the problem." In his view, the problem is our glamorization of our spiritual teachers, as well as the lack of institutional and personal accountability. He writes, More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Buddhist-Muslim Relations and a Harlem Shake Koan Paid Member

    Many predominantly Buddhist countries in lower Asia are also home to substantial populations of Muslims. Likewise, a number of Muslim countries are home to Buddhist minorities. Majority-minority relations can be contentious, but add ethno-religious lines to the mix and things can easily degenerate from prejudicial policy-making to unbridled violence. (Take Rakhine Buddhist violence against the Rohingya Muslims in Burma, for example, which Tricycle covers in its most recent issue.) More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Joshu Sasaki Roshi Scandal Goes Viral (Kind of) Paid Member

    The news of the Joshu Sasaki Roshi and Rinzai-ji scandal has officially broken into the mainstream media. Joshu Roshi's decades-long pattern of sexually abusing his female students, and the Rinzai-ji association's long coverup of it, was first exposed on Adam Tebbe's site Sweeping Zen back in November—although by many accounts, it was an open secret in Zen circles for quite some time. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Chinese New Year and Death Cafes Paid Member

    Chinese New Year this year falls on Sunday, February 10. It's the year of the black water snake. If you're celebrating (and hey, even if you're not), a very happy new year to you! More »
  • Buddha Buzz: A Columbia Professor and a Death Row Inmate Paid Member

    Not to be outdone by Burma's shocking level of prejudice against Muslims, a group of Sinhalese Buddhist monastics known as the "Buddhist Force" is campaigning to ban halal meat in Sri Lanka amidst attacks on Muslim-owned businesses and other violence. The Sinhalese president has urged the monks to maintain religious harmony within the country, especially since the nation's civil war with the Hindu Tamil Tigers ended only four years ago. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Buddha Porta Potties, Marine Mindfulness, and Tibetan Rap Paid Member

    I don't know what Dutch company Boels Rental was thinking when they green-lighted an advertising campaign that involved images of Shakyamuni Buddha printed on Porta Potties around the Netherlands, but it's safe to say they didn't expect a massive Facebook campaign, led by two Thai Buddhists, demanding that the images be taken down. The campaign gathered such support that only two days after it began, the company had apologized and promised to "withdraw the designs from the market." More »