Cast your eyes upon the sage, there on his *silver* donut throne

Two years after the appearance of the Homer-Simpson-as-Buddha statuette, the toy is now getting a new release in a silver "Silver Anniversary" edition, marking 25 years of The Simpsons on the airwaves. From the marketing copy: "Meditating with a pretzel in one hand, and a giant donut beneath him, Homer, at long last, has found his inner peace. [...] Inspired by The Simpsons [...]

Novelist Rajeev Balasubramanyam takes you on a real-life “American Pilgrimage”

"Vegas encapsulates all the reasons why I should be going to America — fame, money, sex, glamour, the American Dream," writes novelist Rajeev Balasubramanyam (In Beautiful Disguises; The Dreamer) on his blog about his "American Pilgrimage." "If I want spirituality I should surely go to to India, not America, reversing the journey my parents originally made in the Sixties." So [...]

Don’t miss this: NY Times on Would-be Ambassadors of Shangri-La (Updated)

"Tom Hugo seems to be well-versed in Chinese, and he evidently cares deeply about the Tibetan people," writes Andrew Jacobs in his excellent piece from Monday's New York Times. "There’s only one problem with Tom Hugo’s Twitter account." You've probably already guessed what it is. As Jacobs goes on to explain, "Tom Hugo" is just one of a sea of people who are enthusing about [...]

Video: Imogen Heap goes to Bhutan; inspired musicmaking ensues

She went to Bhutan for "the amazing scenery, to meet people I didn't know much about, and to discover a new culture," says musician Imogen Heap -- and sure enough, all of this has come into play in her new music. In this behind-the-scenes clip behind the making of two new songs and their videos, Heap explains how the sights and sounds of Bhutan -- temple bells, the crackling of [...]

Pitch in and help Against the Stream open their new San Francisco meditation center

Via Against the Stream Buddhist Meditation Society: "For over a decade, people from all over the Bay Area have been getting together every Friday to sit in silent meditation and learn from a phenomenal group of dharma teachers including Vinny Ferraro, Gene Lushtak, Matthew Brensilver, Megan Cowan and more. If you’ve meditated with us over the last couple of years, you know this [...]

Buddhist Bluegrass: Peter Rowan shares his “Dharma Blues”

This month sees the release of Dharma Blues, the newest album from Bluegrass star and Buddhist Peter Rowan. His twentieth LP credited as a solo artist, it was recorded in California and New Orleans, and contains bluegrass and country tunes with references to Poe's "The Raven" and, of course, Buddhadharma, in the album's Eastern-tinged title track and the droning "Vulture Peak," [...]

Safe and happy travels, Konchog Norbu…!

I hope you’ll all join me in wishing Konchog Norbu, who’s done such a wonderful job informing and amusing and enlightening us here on the Shambhala Sun blog, safe and happy travels. Why? Well, long story short: Konchog is on his way, as of this morning, into a new adventure, in which he’ll work with a Khenpo (senior monk) in India, taking part in Tibetan/English translations of [...]

Watch CBS’ “Modern Masters of Religion,” featurning the 16th Karmapa, Thomas Merton, and Karen Armstong

This CBS News video presents the stories of three major spiritual figures of the modern era. Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, who introduced His Holiness the 16th Karmapa to the States (and who founded the Shambhala Sun), is seen, as is Lama Surya Das (and his self-described "Jew-fro"), in what amounts to not only a telling of the Karmapa's place in modern religious history but also a [...]

One very loud “Ocean of Wisdom” — and now a nomination for Canadian Album of the Year

If you were going to present Buddhist-influenced ideas by way of music, you probably wouldn't think of a genre called "tech-death" as being the ideal vehicle for doing so. But it sure seems to have worked for Gorguts. (Yes, "Gorguts.") The stalwart band released their LP Colored Sands (referring to the main ingredient of a sand mandala) last year, and now it's been nominated [...]

Read it now: “Loving-Kindness: It Starts With You,” from the July 2014 Shambhala Sun magazine

"If one practice or tool has helped me to get and stay sober," writes meditation teacher Josh Korda in our July magazine, "it is the practice of Metta, or loving-kindness, a powerful meditation practice that heals agitated minds with the development of goodwill toward ourselves and others." Read Josh's story and his easy-to-follow instructions for doing Metta; it's all online [...]