Explosion at Thai temple, Choosing a Dalai Lama successor, and other Buddhist world news

Top Buddhist news from recent days: Explosion in Buddhist temple in Thailand kills 8 people and wounds many others A look at the Dalai Lama's choices for choosing (or not) his successor, from today's New York Times Shaolin kung fu 'action meditation' tradition, rooted in Chinese Chan Buddhism, gains followers in the West Chinese authorities continue 'strike hard' campaign, [...]

Asian art and its impact: two great exhibits in New York

Lovers of Buddhism and art will want to get to New York to catch two exhibits. Now at the Metropolitan Museum are some of the earliest surviving Indian manuscripts that were painted on palm leaves. Early Buddhist Manuscript Painting: The Palm-leaf Tradition centers on the Mahayana text, the Ashtasahasrika Prajnaparamita Sutra ('Perfection of Wisdom'), illustrated through the [...]

Learning “The Rules of Victory”

When life leads us into disagreements and conflicts, as it always does, we need a way to reach our goals without creating unnecessary harm. Here, James Gimian and Barry Boyce show us how we can use the principles of Sun Tzu's Art of War to work skillfully with the underlying energies that give rise to effective action. Nancy stared out her office window into the cold twilight. [...]

Can Buddhism “work” for Josef Fritzl?

The European tabloids are abuzz with the news that Josef Fritzl, who infamously raped his daughter, imprisoning her in his cellar for 24 years, has "converted to Buddhism." The Sun (absolutely not to be confused with the Shambhala Sun!) reports that Fritzl "hopes to be reincarnated as a decent person in his next life if he can help stop other weirdos copying his crimes," and [...]

Meditation reduces pain… and here’s how

Today in Health Day News and on CTV.ca: Well-trained meditators appear to be less sensitive to pain, Canadian researchers report. "Previous studies had shown that teaching patients with chronic pain to meditate seemed to help them, but no one had examined how these effects might come about," said study author Joshua A. Grant. His study (with co-author Dr. Pierre Rainville) is [...]

Sit Every Day! Advice, plus “Ten Suggestions for Having a Regular Daily Practice Even if You Would Rather Be Thrown into a Shark-Infested Ocean”

By Diana Winston Your unforgiving alarm rings for all it's worth. It's 7AM. You crash out of bed, slamming your toe on your bedside table. You fumble for your zafu in the dark. "It's over here somewhere," you mumble. Hearing you awaken from the dead, your cat runs screeching. You are about to plant your still-zombiefied-self on the cushion when nature calls. Three minutes [...]

Homelessness, Buddhism, and a call to take the ‘plunge’

Thanks to Danny Fisher, who pointed me to Tom Armstrong—a Buddhist who blogs about his experience of being homeless at Homeless Tom. I appreciated the comment that Tom just left, in response to Danny's post: "I recommend that readers of your blog do a "plunge," as they call it: Spend a day or two, or a week or two, in the Homeless World in your city or one far enough away that [...]

Being from nowhere & practicing dharma: sound like you?

Monica Sanford, whose "Buddhist in Nebraska" blog has drawn attention from the Buddhist blogosphere, writes that learning and practicing dharma in the absence of sangha is a tricky thing. See her story below, then tell us your own: How have you been able to study and practice dharma, while living on the fringe? There are six Christian churches within six blocks of my home. [...]

Reverend Joan Hogetsu Hoeberichts to Receive Award

The Heart Circle Sangha announced on January 26 that its spiritual director Reverend Joan Hogetsu Hoeberichts Sensei of Ridgewood, New Jersey, was selected by a committee of Buddhist scholars and practitioners as an Outstanding Woman in Buddhism for 2009. Rev. Hoeberichts, along with nineteen other Buddhist women, will be honored at an award ceremony held at the Association for [...]

Buddhist Military Sangha: Reconnect with the Three Treasures

Lieutenant Jeanette Shin is an American priest in the Jodo Shinshu tradition, and a Buddhist chaplain in the US military. She contributes to a blog of teachings, news, and discussion aimed at any/all Buddhists associated with the US military. Today, in honor of the new year, Shin encourages us to notice the markers of stability and change, and to reconnect with the Three [...]