BuddhaFest Short Films Showcase

Thanks for participating in the Short Films Showcase competition. Voting ends Friday evening, June 8. Check back in a few days to see who won the Audience Choice Award. You can still enjoy all the short films through July 8.

Two months ago, we launched this Short Films Showcase competition with a simple and serious question: "What does it mean to be Awake in the World?"

Twenty-five dared to respond. With original, five-minute videos that range in content from beekeeping in Virginia to skateboarding in East Harlem, these filmmakers answered with visual stories of meditation, mindful awareness, compassion, and service to the world.

And now it's your turn, ladies and gentlemen, to vote for the winner.

Simply choose the short film you'd like to watch, give it a fair chance to vie for your (mindful) attention, and then rate the video by clicking on the stars. You can, of course, watch as many as you would like (but you should watch them all!).

Voting starts today and ends on June 8. The entry that receives the highest combination of votes and average rating will be named Audience Choice, winning that lucky filmmaker $1,000 in cash and two 4-Day All Festival Passes to BuddhaFest in Washington, D.C. The two entries that come in second and third win two 4-Day All-Festival passes to BuddhaFest.

As far as Buddhist film contests go, these are some pretty hot rewards, so make sure to support your favorites and share them with your friends on Facebook, Twitter, Google+... whatever you've got in your social media arsenal! Help us spread the word about being "awake in the world"—and watch some inspiring films in the process.

Tricycle | BuddhaFest Online Film Festival Get Your Online Festival Pass

Short Films Showcase

It’s a film festival like no other! For six great weeks this summer, starting May 29 and continuing through July 8, Tricycle and BuddhaFest team up to offer you the best in Buddhist cinema by award-winning filmmakers from around the globe. Plus, exclusive director interviews, dharma talks, and a special tribute to spiritual pioneer Ram Dass. Only $30 for Basic Members; $20 preferred member rate for Supporting and Sustaining Members. Get your Online Festival Pass now!

Zarko Mladenovic and Nenad Simic

Filmmaker: Zarko Mladenovic and Nenad Simic

Humanity is dreaming, suffocating in illusions and lies presented by the media and reflected in social conditioning. Anicca Sanpaku is a perspective of awakening which contrasts the loss of humanity with our obsessive quest for consciousness.

Fred Yi and Lauren Talley

Filmmakers: Fred Yi and Lauren Talley

What does it mean to be awake in the world? It's not the kind of question the average person would expect to be asked while walking down the street or while taking a break at work. But that's exactly what we asked dozens of tourists, businessmen, students, and others. Their answers offer a glimpse of what the average person—not just the philosopher or spiritual guru—thinks about spirituality, consciousness, community, and existence.

Christina Reilly

Filmmaker: Christina Reilly

"The Fair" explores light and dark on the rides tonight.

Nicholas Fici and Louis Angora

Filmmakers: Nicholas Fici and Louis Angora

This film is an attempt at a visual presentation of the moment of Bodhidharma's enlightenment after 9 years of zazen.

Dan Margolies and Skye Margolies

Filmmaker: Dan Margolies and Skye Margolies

"Buddha in the Beeyard" is a rumination on interbeing and Buddhist environmental ethics as related to mindful beekeeping, presenting the filmmakers' lives in beekeeping as a form of practice.

John Wassel

Filmmaker: John Wassel

This is a stop motion interpretation of the famous Zen discourse from Ch'ing-yuan Wei-hsin. Through the Buddha's teaching and our own effort we can slowly understand the true nature of the world around us by overcoming our misconceptions. First believing something exists when it does not, then believing it doesn't exists when it does, and finally seeing the true nature of things.

J. Jason Graff

Filmmaker: J. Jason Graff

"Daily Commute" is an illustration of the challenge, humor, and reward involved in our daily practice. Though we have these crazy monkey minds, we strive on each day, recognizing the humor in our struggle.

Conor Provenzano

Filmmaker: Conor Provenzano

In this experimental vision of self-knowledge, a young man cleans the mirror of his mind, showing him that his true face can be seen in everything he sees. "The Original Face" asks the question "who are you?" and begs the viewer to realize the impermanence of all forms.

Nick Cope

Filmmaker: Nick Cope

Footage shot at the Shoton Festival, Drepung Monastery, Lhasa, Tibet in August 2005, is cut to the music "Miles Away" by Phil Thornton. A huge thangka painting of the Buddha is unfurled on the mountainside as thousands of locals partake of the festivities. The film aims to take the audience into the heart of the festival.

Rebecca Saag and John Saag

Filmmakers: Rebecca Saag and John Saag

Yoga Art documents Kim Manfredi's experimental method of combining her two life passions, yoga and fine art, which had until recently been separate parts of her life.

Chelsi Bullard and Jessica Jones

Filmmakers: Chelsi Bullard and Jessica Jones

The Feeling of Renewal answers the question "what is Buddhism?" through a mindfulness-based approach. We encourage people to listen to their own breath and allow the body to react to that breath. Only then can our mind, heart, and spirituality align, allowing us to experience renewal.

Donat Sperling

Filmmaker: Donat Sperling

Chakra Meditation is a sensational journey and guided meditation in which we can discover our energetic nature and relax into a meditative state. The video will guide the viewer through 7 chakras, starting with the root chakra, going all the way to the crown chakra. It is suggested that for each transition into the next chakra one breaths deeply and relaxes into the present moment.

Stacey Stone

Filmmaker: Stacey Stone

"Awake in the World" was shot entirely on the shores of Lake Atitlan, Guatemala in 2012. The film's narrative includes various individuals living and working in this sacred area as well as a Mayan Shaman. Guatemala seemed like a perfect locationin 2012 to ask "What does it mean to be Awake in the World?" Six spiritual individuals and local imagery attempt to answer this inquiry.

Andréa de Keijzer

Filmmaker: Andréa de Keijzer

This video was created for Michael Stone's book Awake in the World, in which he teaches the essentials of mindfulness and yoga practice, combining simplicity with the notion of interdependence of all beings.

Stacy Morin

Filmmaker: Stacy Morin

This is a film about a woman looking for something in the world when she should really be looking for compassion within herself to find what she is searching for.

Melissa Flores

Filmmaker: Melissa Flores

The cow's meditation is a performance for the cows. Although they are the ones learning to meditate, humans can also benefit from hearing the teachings. The tale 'The cow's meditation' was taken from the book "The joy of living" by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche.

Joel Metzger

Filmmaker: Joel Metzger

What remains when a person loses everything? What is the one possession that everyone truly owns? The feeling of life's essential current is immediately close, beautiful, and peaceful. This inner experience never leaves. This animated short is a true story of total loss and a demonstration of the permanence of inner experience.

Seung Ah Lee

Filmmaker: Seung Ah Lee

One day while Lee was walking down a busy city street, it suddenly seemed that everyone around him was controlled by the shape of squares. It was as though the shape of squares had cast a lengthening shadow on everyone's existence, obscuring people's bright and open-ended awareness with the dreary repetitiveness of day-to-day living, and in a way that no one even noticed. But at the end of the day, life consists of both brief strokes of happiness and unexciting, gloomy series of chores.

Matt Costanza

Filmmaker: Matt Costanza

"Dissolution" attempts to dissolve the notions of personal boundaries through elemental transformations. It portrays life and human action as fluid, elegant, and ever changing: through slit-scan, stroboscopic, and rotoscoped animation techniques. Images were shot on 35mm film with stroboscopic or slit scan techniques, or scanned directly from ink paintings. The dance was improvised by Kelsey Lumpkin, and the original soundtrack was composed by Ethan Borshansky.

Artists website

David Brown & Rebecca Brown

Filmmaker: David Brown Poem: Rebecca Brown

To be awake means to find and be found by love. We find love in all of life, if we put the pieces together.

Jes Therkelsen

Filmmaker: Jes Therkelsen

Music is a way for Kerry Klein to experience a silence in her mind. Can she bring that space into the rest of her life?

Julián Gerena-Quiñones

Filmmaker: Julián Gerena-Quiñones

"What does it mean to be awake in the world?" "iAwake answers" this question through the perspectives of three young men from East Harlem, each who practices meditation at Peace on the Street, a school dedicated to bringing Zen practice to the American inner city.

Steven Emmanuel

Filmmaker: Steven Emmanuel

Thich Choc Thanh, a Buddhist monk from Vietnam, visits a property in Virginia, where he and his monastic brothers hope to establish a temple. With gentle humor, insight, and compassion, he offers a message that captures the meaning of awakening.

Chad Scheifele

Filmmaker: Chad Scheifele

"Who am I?" is a short film about a young practitioner of mindfulness who, through a series of personal encounters, discovers the true nature of existence.

Atsushi Matsunaga and Grady Candler

Filmmaker: Atsushi Matsunaga and Grady Candler

Moto Na Maji (Fire & Water) documents how an extraordinary international group of religious leaders, social advocates, environmentalists, and artists gathered with local communities at the edge of the Great Rift Valley in Kenya, the cradle of humanity, to offer prayers for a new awakening of compassion and altruism. An ancient fire and water ceremony was adapted by Shinnyo-en, the Japanese Buddhist order, to be shared and to be meaningful for everyone.