Obama messages Congress on Burma progress, sanctions

Burma MAP

On May 15, US President Barack Obama issued the following "Message -- Continuation of the National Emergency with Respect to Burma," and renewed his authority to maintain sanctions on that country. TO THE CONGRESS OF THE UNITED STATES: Section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1622(d)) provides for the automatic termination of a national emergency unless, [...]

Buddhists Go to the White House

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The streets of Washington DC were lined with blossoms and greenery, the prospect of promise. One hundred thirty Buddhist teachers, monks, nuns, laymen and laywomen, academics, and organizers met on Thursday May 14 for the first “White House—U.S. Buddhist Leadership Conference,” the subject at hand being “Voices in the Square—Action in the World.” While I am ambivalent about a [...]

White House hosts US Buddhist leaders

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Update – Friday, February 15: The White House-US Buddhist leadership Conference, described here, has now taken place. Click here to read attendee Hozan Alan Senauke's account of it. On Thursday, May 14 — coinciding with Vesak, the celebration of the Buddha's birth, death, and enlightenment — Buddhist leaders including the scholar-monk Bhikkhu Bodhi will join together to [...]

Gyalwang Drukpa visits Baltimore, upholds LGBT people at White House

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Thursday was a busy day for the Gyalwang Drukpa, head of the Drukpa, or Dragon, Order of Buddhism. As the Baltimore Sun reports, he spent time in West Baltimore "with more than a dozen local ministers and other peace advocates, offering prayers, blessings and words of encouragement in the aftermath of last week's unrest over the death of Freddie Gray. [...] 'We all must work [...]

Same-sex marriage: What do Buddhists think?

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Noting that on Tuesday, April 28, "oral arguments will begin on a group of Supreme Court cases that will determine the legality of same-sex marriage nationwide," the Public Religion Research Institute has compiled data from their "Americans Values Atlas" on the subject. Based on 40,000 interviews with people of all sorts of religious persuasions, the Atlas's findings tell us [...]

Updated: China turns up the heat on Tibet

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China's Tibet policy has made headlines again this week, after the government accused the Dalai Lama of encouraging self-immolations on Wednesday morning. Last week, in The People's Daily, Chen Quanguo, China's Communist party chief in Tibet, announced plans to more formally assess that Tibetan monasteries are models of harmony, ensuring that monks and nuns remain "patriotic [...]

Shambhala Sun endorses Ted Cruz for President

Shambhala Sun Ted Cruz President

The Buddhist magazine Shambhala Sun (part of the Foundation that also publishes this website) has announced its first-ever explicit endorsement of a U.S. presidential candidate: Texas Senator Ted Cruz. Being that Buddhists are usually assumed to be liberals, the magazine’s move might come as a shock to some. In a press statement released late yesterday, the Shambhala Sun’s [...]

The Virtue of Civility

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Attacks ads, Internet trolls, lies and appeals to the worst in people—how do we restore the virtue of civility? A panel, led by Melvin McLeod, on bringing depth, respectfulness and integrity back to our national discourse. Melvin McLeod: How would you assess the state of public discourse in the United States today? Jeffrey Dvorkin: I think that there is a level of health in [...]

Students for a Free Tibet flag important issue

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On January 14th, Students for a Free Tibet launched the #TibetFlagChallenge. The organization is asking people to fly a Tibetan flag, post it to social media, and challenge three more friends to do the same. According to the group’s website, the aim is to “shine a light on the Tibetan flag and the Tibetan people’s struggle for freedom.” The campaign comes in the run-up to [...]

The King We Need

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He was more than just the civil rights leader he is remembered as today. Martin Luther King, Jr., was one of America's greatest moral and political philosophers, his life founded on deep, sophisticated and courageous spiritual convictions. Charles R. Johnson looks at King's teachings and examples and why they are important to all Americans. "The great problem facing modern man [...]