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    Letter to the Schools of the Buddha Paid Member

    You who are disincarnate, who know at what point in its carnal trajectory, its insensitive coming and going, that the soul finds the absolute verb, the new speech, the interior ground; you who know how one returns to oneself in thought and how the spirit can save itself from itself; you who are interior to yourselves; you for whom the spirit is no longer on the carnal plane here there are hands for whom taking… More »
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    GenNext Paid Member

    I have a confession to make. I used to sneer at people who fluttered from religion to religion concocting their own spirituality from the sexiest of each. But one morning while praying I realized that I epitomize the spiritual shopper! My cart is filled with Hindu shlokas, Theravadin precepts, Christian psalms, and Rumi’s mystical poetry. More »
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    On Conferences: The Second Gethsemani Encounter Paid Member

    The first Gethsemani Encounter took place in 1996, at Gethsemani Abbey, the Trappist monastery in Kentucky where Thomas Merton, the well-known monk and writer, lived for twenty-seven years. That this first large international meeting of Christian and Buddhist contemplatives took place there was no accident. In the late 1960s, Merton met His Holiness the Dalai Lama in India, and the two made a strong connection. At the 1996 gathering, I had been astonished by the Christian monastic practice of daily recitation of the Psalms—passionate and sometimes violent poems. How in the world, I’d asked the Christians, could the recitation of such stuff serve as the centerpiece of your spiritual practice? This question opened up the meeting, as the monks poured out their hearts about their practice. I was moved but still not convinced, so I began looking closely at the Psalms. More »
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    Tibet or Not Tibet Paid Member

    At the U.N.'s Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing this past September and the parallel Non Governmental Organizations (NGO) Forum in the suburb of Huairou several issues had delegates and Chinese officials toe to toe. Not the least of these was the issue of Tibetan sovereignty. On September 1, as the rain fell over dozens of supporters, nine Tibetan women held a silent protest. With scarves tied over their mouths, they stood holding hands for… More »
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    Speaking of Dharma Paid Member

    How can people in the modern West apply Buddhist teachings to their daily lives? This question—perhaps the central one for many dharma practitioners today—was recently addressed by four reincarnate lamas of the Gelugpa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism. Speaking at a conference hosted by New York’s Tibet Center on June 26-27, the lamas talked about matters ranging from tantric visualization to how to do prostrations. But some of their most interesting comments dealt with human relationships. More »
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    From the Academy: If and When Paid Member

    Last fall I was interviewed on ABC’s “Nightline” in connection with Ted Koppel’s conversation with the Dalai Lama (aired September 13, 1995). The producer asked me what I thought the role of the Dalai Lama would be if Tibet ever regained its independence. “If and when Tibet regains its independence . . . ,” I began, and with those seven words out of my mouth, the following thoughts began inside my head: “�If and when!… More »