Burma

  • Buddha Buzz: Chinese Policing Tibetan Areas Suffer from PTSD Paid Member

    France24 reporter Cyril Payen recently brought new interviews and images out of Tibet that reveal a dire human rights situation resembling “an Orwellian world of surveillance.” Nicholas Bequelin with Human Rights Watch contends that "the situation in Tibet is as bad as it's ever been," adding that "Chinese police forces are now running what could be called a major counter-insurgency operation in Lhasa." The problem, says Bequelin, is that there is no real insurgency in Tibet. And with the visible increase of surveillance, the emergence of one is unlikely. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Marijuana-filled Buddhas, HHDL speak out on Burma, and some good ol' Buddhist Americana Paid Member

    Earlier this week US Customs and Border Protection officials seized nearly 600 lbs of pot inside a shipment of Buddha statues and other religious figurines. Officials at the El Paso US-Mexico crossing discovered the narcotics—and an alternate explanation for the Buddha's contented grin—with the help of an irreverent, drug-sniffing dog. No arrests have been made. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: Sex Tape and the Sangha Paid Member

    In Lowell, Massachusetts, a sex-tape scandal involves neither unscrupulous celebrities nor hapless victims of disgruntled exes, but a Buddhist temple, a monk, and a community organizer with some shady finances. The city's Cambodian community has been rocked by the recording of prominent community leader Maya Men having sex with a monk—in a temple. Both Men and the monk, Ven. Nhem Kimteng, were part of an executive committee responsible for fundraising and overseeing the construction of a new $10 million temple, thus involving the area's sizable Cambodian community, which settled in Lowell in the 1970s following the Khmer Rouge-led genocide in Cambodia. The committee was already mired in controversy with accusations of suspicious finances and a lack of transparency. More »
  • Buddha Buzz: The Mindful Lifestyle Movement and "Insta-Karma" Paid Member

    Over at Maclean's Anne Kingston surveys the world of corporate mindfulness and the Buddhist reaction. "What has gripped Western attention," writes Kingston, "is mindfulness's ability to improve performance—of Olympic athletes, parents, and even nations, as promised in U.S. Congressman Tim Ryan’s 2012 bestseller, Mindful Nation." Mindfulness: the panacea to all our personal and societal ills. Tech entrepreneurs, corporations (benevolent and evil), publishers (Buddhist and non-Buddhist), and life-coaches of all stripes have been quick to capitalize on the "mindful" vogue. More »
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    Aung San Suu Kyi gives alms and robes to monks Paid Member

    Aung San Suu Kyi, freed after being detained for 15 of the last 21 years, greeted monks outside the headquarters of her National League for Democracy. Burma's pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi offered alms to hundreds of Buddhist monks and nuns on Wednesday—the first major meeting between her and the Buddhist Order since her release last month. About 780 Buddhist monks and 119 nuns showed up to receive cash and material donations at Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) party office in Rangoon. An NLD party member said that although Suu Kyi planned to donate to as many as 150 monks, other monks and nuns from across the former capital also joined the occasion. “We could not offer robes to all the monks. So, we had to donate slippers and cash to them instead,” he said. More »
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    Beautiful Photos of Buddhism in Burma Paid Member

    These photographs of Buddhism in Burma, by Joaquin Gomez Sastre, are fantastic. Check the rest of them out here. Images: Joaquin Gomez Sastre More »