Random Notes

  • Sarah Palin, Zen Master? Paid Member

    In his article "Did Sarah Palin Top Rush Limbaugh’s Idiotic BP Oil Spill Remarks?" on ecopolitology, Zachary Shahan suggests the possibility that Sarah Palin is a Zen master. After reading one of Sarah Palin's latest remarks, my mind has almost gone blank. Perhaps she is actually a Buddhist teacher in disguise and these confusing or nonsensical one-liners she puts out are really Zen kōans geared at bringing more people to enlightenment. Here is the one that almost brought me to enlightenment (from Palin's Twitter feed): "Extreme Greenies:see now why we push'drill,baby,drill'of known reserves&promising finds in safe onshore places like ANWR? Now do you get it?" More »
  • Buddhist Charities Paid Member

    In our Spring 2010 issue, which contained a special section on Generosity (and Greed), we included spread on Buddhist or Buddhism-related charities and not-for-profits that are doing good work around the world.  We did a second installment for the Summer 2010 issue and are currently working on a third for the August issue. While we are close to complete, we are still open to suggestions. More »
  • Brazilian military police go Zen Paid Member

    If you've seen Pixote (or read newspapers), you probably don't hold Carioca policemen in high regard. But try Espirito Santo, a state in Brazil's southeast, where military police "are developing interpersonal relationship skills, emotional balance and discipline in a Zen Buddhist monastery." You can read more here. If you read Portuguese, you can see it in Globo. And if you don't, you can still watch the video there. More »
  • How many candles on the Buddha's birthday cake? Paid Member

    ... Or how many lamps in the Buddha's birthday tree? Either way, yesterday’s post about Vesak got me wondering: when was the Buddha born? As it turns out, there is a long scholarly discussion on the date of the Buddha’s birth (is anybody surprised?). The traditional date given in most Southeast Asian countries is 624 BCE. Scholars in the West and Asia have long rejected this date and, until recently, have placed the date somewhere between 567-563 BCE. These days, however, and increasing number of scholars place the date of the Buddha’s birth later—some even arguing that it could be up to one hundred years later than previously believed (463 BCE). More »
  • Watch: 3D Kalachakra Mandala Paid Member

    Our recent popular Sand Mandala video post reminded me that I've been meaning to look for this great 3D CGI Kalachakra Mandala video that I saw several years ago.  Sure enough, it took about 90 seconds to track down on youtube. More »
  • "The End of Lost: Death, Dharma, and the Dao" on Huffpost Paid Member

    Here is an interesting Huffington Post article on the finale of Lost.  Michael Carmichael writes, In the shattering aftermath of the end of Lost, the overwhelming tendency will be to dumb down its meaning to the level of mere western entertainment. Lost deserves to be understood as an epic -- an infinite interlocking series of trilogies and operas articulating the transformations of consciousness through the processes of death. More »