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    ON CONFLICT: Teaching Ground Paid Member

    A few years ago, near my office at Marianopolis College in Montreal, a colleague called out and asked me to mediate in an argument he was having with a student about the Middle East. I was running late, so, with a burst of laughter, I spontaneously answered, “They are all crazy over there! That is all you need to know.” Those words have haunted me ever since, both because of their flippancy and because I meant them. I did not have time to enter a discussion then, and I was - to an extent - just kidding. But I did believe, although I never admitted it, that everyone in the Middle East was crazy, that it was that simple. More »
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    ON GARDENING: A Trace of Figs Paid Member

    Not so long ago I had just finished pruning a beloved Black Mission fig tree when breaking archaeobotanical news rocked my world. A handful of charred figs, carbonized and unearthed in the ruins of a burned village north of the ancient city of Jericho, pushed the known dawn of agriculture back a thousand years to 9400 B.C.E. More »
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    MY VIEW: Do I Mind? Paid Member

    Keeping your head in a mindless world. More »
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    What does being a Buddhist Mean to You? Re: Anti-Aging Cream Paid Member

    Ann Setko Iversen Potter Vancouver, Washington "I listen to the sounds of nature and follow its suggestions in daily life. The whole universe is one nonstop motion of flowing time that all things are subject to. We're born, and decay. What a fuss. The use of anti-aging cream, if such a thing exists, seems a wasteful effort in my opinion." … More »
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    Practical Pilgrim: The Roots of Enlightenment Paid Member

      BODH GAYA IS Buddhism’s Mecca, Vatican, and Wailing Wall. Among the eight great Buddhist pilgrimage sites in India, Bodh Gaya is the most visited. But unlike the holy places of those other faiths, the great center of the Buddhist world revolves around not a building or a shrine but a single living tree.   For six years the seeker Gautama, hoping to find a way out of suffering, had practiced and painful austerities along the nearby Niranjana River. But finally realizing this was not the path to ultimate happiness, he wrapped himself in a yellow shroud taken off a corpse marked for cremation and accepted a bowl of rice milk from a young village girl named Sujata. This strengthened him. Taking fresh green grass for a mat, he then sat facing east under a local pipal tree and vowed not to rise until he had attained enlightenment.   More »
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    ON GARDENING: Arranging Garbage Paid Member

    IT WAS ALMOST DARK when I came upon the bobcat, walking alone on a steep overgrown trail far above the Green Gulch valley. She had been dead for weeks, her black-rimmed lips pulled back in a snarl of protest, tiny soot flies scouring her empty eye sockets. Her belly was slit open and she lay, disemboweled, in her own dry blood. The acrid stench of death rose off her matted fur. I considered carrying the� More »