Science

Current scientific research affirms, and challenges, traditional Buddhist teachings
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    Time & Again Paid Member

    An ancient buddha said:For the time being stand on top of the highest peak.For the time being proceed along the bottom of the deepest ocean.For the time being three heads and eight arms.For the time being an eight- or sixteen-foot body.For the time being a staff or whisk.For the time being a pillar or lantern.For the time being the sons of Zhang and Li.For the time being the earth and sky.–Eihei Dogen (The Time-Being, translated by Kazuaki Tanahashi and Dan Welch) More »
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    First There Is a Mountain (Then There Is No Mountain) Paid Member

    Mount Meru with Mandala, Yuan Dynasty (1279-1368), silk tapestry, 33x33 inches. In this Chinese tapestry, Mount Meru appears with a moon and red sun marking the vertical midpoint of the mountain. The funnel-like shape symbolizes the increasingly large realms above the Heaven of the Thirty-Three Gods. A mandala with eight lotus petals is placed in the center of the highest realm, Akanishta Paradise. More »
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    Worlds Apart Paid Member

    View the print version of this article in PDF format More »
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    The World Without Us Paid Member

    Alan Weisman is an award-winning environmental journalist whose reports have appeared in Harper’s, the Atlantic Monthly, the New York Times Magazine, and Discover, and on National Public Radio; he teaches international journalism at the University of Arizona. His New York Times best seller The World Without Us, called by critics an “eco-thriller” and “one of the grandest thought experiments of our time,” considers the fate of the earth were human beings suddenly to disappear. In August, Tricycle contributing editor Clark Strand spoke with Weisman about impermanence, human responsibility, and the initiation into a new way of global thinking. More »
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    The Hot Hand Sutra Paid Member

    Two years ago, while researching an article on sports, I came upon a conundrum that resisted any attempt to confine it to the language of the conventional sports page. It concerns a cherished gospel of the playing field that athletes and their fans call the "Hot Hand." Heat in this case refers to transcendence, an inexplicable escalation of energy and skill. A golfer with a Hot Hand will send his drives twenty or thirty yards beyond his ordinary range; an archer will see her arrows graze each other as they strike the bull's eye; a basketball player will hit a string of shots so acrobatic and indifferent to defense that he seems linked by invisible channels to the basket. More »
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    The Science of Enlightenment Paid Member

    Beginning in the 1970s science, and especially physics, became a favorite topic of conversation among students of Eastern religion. The first, and still the most interesting contribution to the vast Physics & Eastern Philosophy genre, Fritjof Capra’s influential Tao of Physics, explores parallels between the Avatamsaka Sutra and modern physics. The Avatamsaka Sutra teaches that mind, universe, and Buddha are identical. Capra was struck by a seeming parallel with quantum theory: “A careful analysis of the process of observation in atomic physics has shown that the subatomic particles have no meaning as isolated entities, but can only be understood as interconnections between the preparation of an experiment and the subsequent measurement. Quantum theory thus reveals a basic oneness of the universe.” Now a widely accepted truism among non-scientists, the idea is regularly invoked by modern-day Buddhists. More »