Random Notes

  • Church bans yoga Paid Member

    Reading the tabloids is a bad habit I've developed this summer. I've weaned myself off most of them, though, but I can't quite quit the British tabloid the Sun ("Got a story? We pay £££"). Today's edition reports that a Methodist church near Manchester has banished an over-50s yoga group, leaving elderly yogis throwing up their hands. The church's new minister fears the yogis could be preaching "rival religions"—more specifically, Hinduism and Buddhism. Iris Turner, a 64-year-old yogini, isn't happy with the church's new minister, Rev. Amanda Roper: "Her views are extreme," she tells the Sun. "We are hurt, disappointed and offended."  Mrs. Turner invited Rev. More »
  • 5 (more) Buddhist iPhone apps Paid Member

    Tuaw.com, "the unofficial apple weblog," posted a blog today titled "5 apps for the Buddhist," the newest installment of their ongoing "5 apps for" series.  We have reported a few times in the past on Buddhist iPhone apps and we very highly recommend the free Access to Insight app (a mobile version of the Access to Insight website containing over 1,000 suttas, essays and audio talks by scholars and teachers, and much more) but this new list seems quite promising as well. From the list on Tuaw.com, More »
  • Hundreds Protest Buddha Bar Paid Member

    A protest in Jakarta, Indonesia, against a local branch of the French-owned chain restaurant Buddha Bar became chaotic today when protesters damaged the restaurant and nearby public facilities. Over 300 Indonesian Buddhists showed up for the protest, which was organized by the Anti-Buddha Bar Forum (FABB). The crowd gathered in white t-shirts to protest the name of the restaurant which they feel insults their religion. From an AFP report: "We're worried the existence of Buddha Bar can damage relations between people from different religions, and can also threaten the nation's unity," rally spokesman Karya Elly said. More »
  • Buddha Boy Back with a Vengeance Paid Member

    Even Buddha boy gets angry.* More »
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    Apple consumers as religious adherents Paid Member

    We already know that there’s an iPhone app for enlightenment, but is it possible that Apple itself is a religion? In an interesting blog post at the Atlantic, entitled “The Varieties of Religious Experience: How Apple Stays Divine,” Alexis Madrigal highlights the work of scholars who study Apple’s consumers as religious devotees. In particular, Madrigal focuses on the work of media scholar Heidi Campbell from Texas A&M, who discusses four myth narratives that consumers are told and tell themselves to attach themselves to the brand. Campbell summarizes these narratives like this: More »
  • 7 ways to use the internet to reduce suffering. Paid Member

    In a recent Bearing Witness Blog post entitled 7 ways to use the internet to reduce suffering, Ari Pliskin lists seven important points that were explored during the Wisdom 2.0 summit that took place earlier this year.  It is a very insightful, practical, and concise list and I recommend giving it a look. 1. Practice being present in person 2. Practice being present online 3. Build Relationships 4. Enforce accountability 5. Raise money and spread petitions More »