All of our interpersonal relationships are a crucible for Buddhist practice
  • Talking Buddha, Talking Christ Paid Member

    Popemania may have moved on to the afterlife, but our memories of it endure: the wide-eyed references to Francis as a "rockstar," the jet-black Fiat, and yes, even the Popemojis. Papal pomp aside, perhaps the most memorable moment of the visit was the Pope's address to a joint session of Congress, in which he spoke pointedly about climate change, the arms trade, and the death penalty, among other issues.  More »
  • Dalai Lama Says If Successor Is Female, She Must Be Very Attractive Paid Member

    In a recent interview with the BBC, the 14th Dalai Lama, the spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, expresses some controversial ideas about female leadership and the gender's innate inclination toward compassion. (Jezebel was right on it right away.) At around the 4:50 mark in the video (below), when journalist Clive Myrie asks whether the Dalai Lama's 15th reincarnation could be a woman, he responds with an enthusiastic "Yes!" explaining that females "biologically [have] more potential to show affection . . . and compassion." But he soon qualifies his endorsement, saying, "If female Dalai Lama come, the face must be very very . . . should be very attractive." More »
  • 10 Steps to a Mindful Wedding Paid Member

    On July 25th my fiancée, Courtney, and I got married. It was truly incredible, partly because now I never have to say the word fiancée again. While other people said girlfriend or boyfriend, husband or wife, for 14 months we used this flowery French term that made it sound like we were constantly one-upping everyone. “Oh, you got married in a hotel? My fiancée and I are getting married in a barn in Vermont.” Even the mundane began to sound pretentious: “My fiancée and I had cereal for breakfast.” (And of course we used Dom Perignon instead of milk.) More »
  • 12 Things You Should Never Say to the Sick Paid Member

    Even the most well-intentioned people often don’t know how to talk to the chronically ill. This is because we live in a culture that treats illness as unnatural. As a result, people have been conditioned to turn away in aversion from those who aren’t healthy, even though it’s a fate that will befall everyone at some point in his or her life.  The consequences of taking this unrealistic view of the realities of the human condition is that many people feel uneasy and even fearful when they encounter people who are struggling with their health. I admit that this was true of me before I became chronically ill. Now I find it as natural to talk to people who are chronically ill as I do to people who are the pinnacle of health.  More »
  • Don't Worry, Be Angry Paid Member

    Buddhists often shame each other for expressing anger. But getting in touch with our anger is vital. If we aim to engage destructive social structures, as we must, our efforts will bring us into direct relationship with anger and outrage. At its worst, anger burns us up, injures others, or, when we repress it, collapses us into depression. In the spiritual realm, it can also become passive aggression, which either internalizes as the hyper-energized inner critic or projects out onto those who are "not following the rules.” More »
  • Black, Bisexual, and Buddhist Paid Member

    OAKLAND, Calif. (RNS) When Zenju Earthlyn Manuel goes to teach somewhere for the first time, she often sees surprise in the faces of the students as she is introduced. She doesn’t look like many of them expect. She isn’t Asian. She isn’t a man. And she isn’t white. And getting them to acknowledge that her body—her “manifestation,” as she calls it—is different and a part of her experience is crucial to her teaching. If our bodies are sources of suffering, then we ignore them at our peril. “When I have held and embraced who I am, how I am embodied, it has become a source of enlightenment, of freedom,” she said from a sunny corner window seat in her living room. Draped in a black monk’s jacket, she is a stark contrast to the white walls and white upholstery of the rest of the room. More »