Arts & Culture

The growing influence of Buddhist artistic expression in contemporary culture
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    Reel to Real Paid Member

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    Just One Breath Paid Member

    In this world of onrushing events the act of meditation—even just a "one-breath" meditation—straightening the back, clearing the mind for a moment—is a refreshing island in the stream. Although the term meditation has mystical and religious connotations for many people, it is a simple and plain activity. Attention: deliberate stillness and silence. As anyone who has practiced sitting knows, the quieted mind has many paths, most of them tedious and ordinary. Then, right in the midst of meditation, totally unexpected images or feelings may sometimes erupt, and there is a way into a vivid transparency. But whatever comes up, sitting is always instructive. More »
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    Everything's About the Heart Paid Member

    Tricycle: You just finished a two-week retreat. What practice did you actually do? Gere: It was a Tibetan deity yoga practice, mostly mantra and visualizations. It’s quite an intricate practice. Certainly at this point, I don’t know how to do it perfectly, and probably won’t for many years. It’s like playing the piano: you have to keep doing it and keep doing it.Tricycle: Did you devote most of the day to practice sessions? More »
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    First Lesson, Best Lesson Paid Member

    Born in Baltimore in 1937, Philip Glass began studying the violin at age six but reports that his serious interest in music didn't begin until he took up the flute two years later. After his sophomore year in high school, he entered the University of Chicago, where he studied mathematics and philosophy. He graduated at age 19 and determined to become a composer, moved to New York in order to attend the Julliard School. A few years later he was in Paris for intensive study with Nadia Boulanger, and at that time he was hired by a filmmaker to transcribe the Indian music of Ravi Shankar. For the next ten years, Glass composed a large collection of new music, some of it for the Mabou Mines Theater (Glass was one of the cofounders of that company) but most of it for his own performing group, the Philip Glass Ensemble. In 1976 Einstein on the Beach initiated a series of Glass operas that include Satyagraha and Akhnaten. More »
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    Jerry Garcia Paid Member

    Barbara Meier and Jerry Garcia were friends in the early sixties when they were part of a community of poets, pacifists, and folksingers in Menlo Park, California. Jerry went on to become a founding member of the legendary band, The Grateful Dead, and Barbara became a member of the San Francisco Zen Center under Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. In 1974, she moved to Boulder, Colorado, to study Vajrayana Buddhism with Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche and to be part of the Naropa Institute Creative Writing community. She is the author of a book of poetry, The Life You Ordered Has Arrived. After many years of being out of touch with each other, Barbara and Jerry had this conversation in June of 1991 when the Dead played in Denver. More »
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    Monkey Business Paid Member

    I PAINT THESE MONKEYS with a brush and hand-ground Chinese ink. What began as a response to the death of a friend has become something I lean on, just as I depend on the alphabet to be there when I want to write.I found the paintbrush when I was working on my novel Cruddy, getting nowhere because I was trying to write it on a computer. The problem with writing on a computer was that I could delete anything I felt unsure about. This meant that a sentence was gone before I even had a chance to see what it was trying to become. More »