Buddhism

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  • What is a Buddhist?

    The Endless Further
    David
    27 Aug 2015 | 12:12 am
    Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen was a leading Tibetan lama and a human rights activist. He founded the Gaden Shartse Thubten Dhargye Ling (“Land of Flourishing Dharma”), a center in Long Beach, CA for the study and practice of Tibetan Buddhism, in 1978. I did not know him very well. I occasionally attended his dharma talks on Sunday mornings. He was very approachable. He often answered the phone at the center and you could engage him in a conversation. I always imagined that I could probably just show up any day and if he was available he would probably sit down with me and answer…
  • Money, Lust and Kung Fu: Shaolin’s ‘C.E.O. Monk’ Is Under Fire

    NYT > Buddhism
    5 Aug 2015 | 9:00 pm
    Much of China is transfixed by allegations that the abbot of the famed Shaolin Temple, now a commercial empire, is a swindler and serial philanderer.
  • Yep, It's Still OK

    Progressive Buddhism
    12 Aug 2015 | 8:38 pm
    To recap a blog I wrote here a couple months ago ("No, Really, it's OK"), my partner had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. There was some question as to whether chemotherapy would be needed, but at the very least radiation was required after the surgery. To make a 6-week long story short, radiation finished today. Five days a week for six weeks, radiation. Tomorrow, no more radiation.In the previous blog I remarked how neither of us panicked about it, or projected too far ahead, and for me, that was a credit to my practice. I'm sticking with that. The main difference between the…
  • Overcoming our thoughts and concepts

    The Zennist
    The Zennist
    27 Aug 2015 | 5:43 am
    Trying by the force of will to suppress our thoughts and concepts to reach enlightenment is somewhat analogous to trying to stop the ripples on a pond by patting them down with our hand.  It might even be looked upon as an act of madness.  Zen's idea of having us stop our thoughts, including our concepts really means to see their substance or tathat.  This happens instantaneously.  It just takes one glimpse.  After that we are positioned correctly: the unconditioned substance looking at its compositions all of which are dependent on the unconditioned. …
  • What science says about meditation: it improves your focus and emotional control

    Wildmind Buddhist Meditation
    Wildmind Meditation News
    28 Aug 2015 | 9:00 am
    Joseph Stromberg, Vox: “Mindfulness meditation has been shown to cause distinct changes in brain structure and brain function,” says Yi-Yuan Tang, a Texas Tech neuroscientist who studies meditation and recently reviewed the state of the research for the journal Nature. In experiments, he and others have found that regular meditation seems to improve people’s focus and emotional control, in particular. There are plenty of caveats to this research. It’s early on, and some of the studies include relatively few people. Many are controlled trials(which track how a period of…
 
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    Progressive Buddhism

  • Yep, It's Still OK

    12 Aug 2015 | 8:38 pm
    To recap a blog I wrote here a couple months ago ("No, Really, it's OK"), my partner had just been diagnosed with breast cancer. There was some question as to whether chemotherapy would be needed, but at the very least radiation was required after the surgery. To make a 6-week long story short, radiation finished today. Five days a week for six weeks, radiation. Tomorrow, no more radiation.In the previous blog I remarked how neither of us panicked about it, or projected too far ahead, and for me, that was a credit to my practice. I'm sticking with that. The main difference between the…
  • A Buddhism and Pali scholar's journey into and out of the academic tradition

    28 Jun 2015 | 12:17 am
    For those of you interested in a career in academia, be forewarned. It's not a very welcoming place at the moment. The people are pretty decent imho, but there are currently far too many PhDs for what "the market" needs. Or, put another way, massive governmental cuts (in most if not all English-speaking countries) on education spending over the last 20 or so years have led many departments to freeze hiring, let great professors go, and/or replace retiring teachers with adjunct labor. These days whenever an undergraduate asks me for a recommendation letter for graduate school I send him/her…
  • This is Water

    21 Jun 2015 | 2:55 pm
    Back in the 80s, I was interested in fiction in large part because I was interested in writing fiction. An author that snagged my attention at that time was T. Coraghessan Boyle. I liked that he was crazy with an intimidating vocabulary and I was jazzed by the madcap way he slung words around and the odd notions in his short stories.A competing writer for my attention was David Foster Wallace with his first novel The Broom of the System. I liked the book and I sensed many similarities in Wallace’s writing that I found in Boyle, but, at the time, I thought Wallace to be a distant second to…
  • God and Buddhism

    3 Jun 2015 | 2:13 am
    Greetings readers!I believe in God. I am a Buddhist. Are these two views compatible, truly? Do most Buddhist sensibilities tend to go against any possibility of believing in God? Does it matter if we do believe in God or not as Buddhists? If we do, what kind of God would we believe in? These are all questions that many of us westerns face since God is always in our face somehow.The idea of God and Buddhism has been explored by many scholars and has sat on the back of my mind and many of our readers, for sure.I will not attempt to spell out or construct some kind of Buddhist theology…
  • No, Really, It's OK

    23 May 2015 | 8:35 pm
    "May all beings be happy May they be joyous and live in safety.... Standing or walking, sitting, or lying downDuring all one's waking hoursLet one practice The Way with gratitude"Not holding to fixed viewsEndowed with insightFreed from sense appetitesOne who achieves The WayWill be freed from the duality of birth and death"From the "Metta Sutta" or "Lovingkindness Meditation" as found in the San Francisco Zen Center's Chant Book It is said that Siddhartha Gautama's encounter with sickness, old age, death, and a begging monk led to his leaving home, searching for The Way from other…
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    The Zennist

  • Overcoming our thoughts and concepts

    The Zennist
    27 Aug 2015 | 5:43 am
    Trying by the force of will to suppress our thoughts and concepts to reach enlightenment is somewhat analogous to trying to stop the ripples on a pond by patting them down with our hand.  It might even be looked upon as an act of madness.  Zen's idea of having us stop our thoughts, including our concepts really means to see their substance or tathat.  This happens instantaneously.  It just takes one glimpse.  After that we are positioned correctly: the unconditioned substance looking at its compositions all of which are dependent on the unconditioned. …
  • Chop suey Zen?

    The Zennist
    25 Aug 2015 | 8:56 pm
    I think sometimes that learning Zen or just about Zen, in general, is more like sitting down at a very well prepared Chinese dinner with lots of never-before-tried dishes.  Nothing looks familiar except the noodles or maybe the rice.  For the typical Westerner, who is a product of his culture, the tendency when selecting a dish to try for the first time is to be cautious.  The Westerner wants to know what the food tastes like before he eats it.  He's a bit picky, too.  If there are noodles on the table, he might go for the noodles.  Noodles are…
  • Being always deceived

    The Zennist
    24 Aug 2015 | 8:58 pm
    The lesson we need to learn from history is that we can become easily deceived by it.  Zen has a history but not a very reliable one if we examine its primary sources.  Looking at the lineage of the Zen patriarchs going back to the seven Buddhas is not going to help us to see our own true nature, or the same, our True Mind.   Indeed, there is little of it that is spiritually useful except the recorded sayings of the Zen teachers many of which emerged during the Song period.  A more important and useful history might be one that looks at Zen from a mystical perspective;…
  • A readiness to learn

    The Zennist
    24 Aug 2015 | 6:15 am
    In Buddhism, the puthujjana (the common un-aryan/un-noble person) is the "outer man" who is led by the nose by his sensations; only occupied with sensible things.  This is a downward sloping path.  This puthujjana is unaware of this downward path where, more importantly, it ultimately leads.  Foremost, is it a path of degeneration a path whereby one can pass from the human (i.e., the humane) to the beast, the beast being totally consumed by their desires.  This also leads to exhaustion and depression.  Unlike the aryan (those who have…
  • Escaping from our dreams

    The Zennist
    23 Aug 2015 | 8:24 am
    We awaken to find ourselves walking across a vast desert like plain.  We have no memory of how we came to be here.  Try as we might no fact presents itself that will suffice as an answer—not even a tiny clue is forthcoming.  Walking is all that we can do.  We have faith, a deep faith, that sooner, rather than later, we will be relieved of this walking; we will come to the end of our journey and know the truth.  But what if nothing like this happens?  What if we walk until we are totally exhausted eventually dying?  Even worse, what if after dying we…
 
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    Wildmind Buddhist Meditation

  • What science says about meditation: it improves your focus and emotional control

    Wildmind Meditation News
    28 Aug 2015 | 9:00 am
    Joseph Stromberg, Vox: “Mindfulness meditation has been shown to cause distinct changes in brain structure and brain function,” says Yi-Yuan Tang, a Texas Tech neuroscientist who studies meditation and recently reviewed the state of the research for the journal Nature. In experiments, he and others have found that regular meditation seems to improve people’s focus and emotional control, in particular. There are plenty of caveats to this research. It’s early on, and some of the studies include relatively few people. Many are controlled trials(which track how a period of…
  • Is something lost when we use mindfulness as a productivity tool?

    Wildmind Meditation News
    27 Aug 2015 | 7:37 am
    Charlotte Lieberman, Harvard Business Review: I came to mindfulness as a healing practice after overcoming an addiction to Adderall during my junior year of college. I found myself in this situation because I thought that using Adderall to help me focus was no big deal — an attitude shared by 81% of students nationwide. Adderall simply seemed like an innocuous shortcut to getting things done – and to do so efficiently yet effortlessly. I still remember the rush I felt my first night on Adderall: I completed every page of assigned Faulkner reading (not easy), started and finished a paper…
  • Make meditation a daily habit

    Mark Tillotson
    26 Aug 2015 | 7:41 am
    Sit : Breathe : Love (Sep 1–28) is a 28 Day Meditation Challenge with the aim of helping you to set up the habit of meditating daily. It’s suitable for people of all levels of experience, including complete beginners. The benefits of regular meditation have been demonstrated again and again in multiple studies. Meditating makes you happier, is good for your health, protects your brain from aging, boosts your intelligence, and helps reduce pain, stress, and depression. But it’s not easy to set up a regular meditation practice. So we’re here to help you! The aim of the 28…
  • The way you talk to yourself matters–tips for kids and adults alike

    Wildmind Meditation News
    25 Aug 2015 | 7:59 am
    GoZen!: I’m such an idiot! I can’t believe I locked the keys in the car. What am I going to do now? How am I going to get home? I can’t even call my husband because my phone’s in the car and my purse!! I’m totally stuck. I have no idea what to do. I am hopeless!” I’d like to say that this is a purely fictional situation: that I have never locked my keys, purse and phone in the car, and that, moreover, I would not address myself in such a negative way. But, unfortunately, I cannot. Firstly, I have found myself in … Read the original article »
  • You are not your story, mistake or inner critic’s comments

    Wildmind Meditation News
    24 Aug 2015 | 8:11 am
    Margarita Tartakovsky, Psych Central: So many of us take one isolated event — a mistake, a painful situation — or the critical comments of our inner critic and let it color who we are. Completely. It’s as though we become this one thing. This one negative thing. Maybe your inner critic regularly spews remarks about your weight and how you look disgusting and horrible in everything. So you become the person who looks disgusting and horrible all the time. Maybe you made a big mistake or a bad decision, which you regret. So you become the person defined by that decision, that one mistake.
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    Clarke Scott

  • Soul Searching

    Clarke Scott
    19 Aug 2015 | 8:07 pm
    I heard someone recently use the phrase, “it was a period of ‘soul searching’ in my life.” It struck me then….right then, that my entire life seems to have been a period of “soul searching.” Why? Because as I’ve fleeted from one idea to the next, from one project to the next, I’ve been searching — searching for something but not really understanding what. For the longest time I thought I was searching for what I was doing with my life — my ideas and the projects that came from these ideas. And truth is, some days my ideas and projects…
  • Longing for Silence

    Clarke Scott
    16 Aug 2015 | 9:39 pm
    A tell-tale sign I’m overworked is a deep deep longing for the silence and solitude of mountains.   Taken in 2010 above my apartment in McCleodGanj © This article is the copyright of Clarke Scott and should not be found elsewhere. Related Posts: Photography   
  • Cinephilia & Beyond Article

    Clarke Scott
    2 Jun 2015 | 7:14 pm
    I wrote a piece of film narrative and epistemology over at Cinephilia & Beyond. Go read it here: Cinema — Cartography of the Human Condition   © This article is the copyright of Clarke Scott and should not be found elsewhere. Related Posts: News   
  • New Reel 2015

    Clarke Scott
    28 May 2015 | 2:31 am
    A new reel.The aesthetic is dark and focused on only four projects. This is a conscious choice. It also has footage from my debut feature film I shot. It’s probably not work safe. Clarke Scott 2015 Reel from Clarke Scott on Vimeo. © This article is the copyright of Clarke Scott and should not be found elsewhere. Related Posts: News   
  • Into Post for Moments

    Clarke Scott
    28 Apr 2015 | 1:24 pm
    Just wanted to update you on the progress of our little film, A Thousand Moments Later as the main chunk of principal photography is now complete, and I’m back at home beginning the larger task of sorting the footage and putting together an assembly cut from which I will begin to mold the piece into a proper movie—adding music, sound design, and of course, finessing the edit itself.   Here’s what has happened thus far:   We started in a little apartment owned by a friend to do the opening scenes when Gemma (Lily Hall) and Ryan (Chris Farrell) appear on screen together…
 
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    The Endless Further

  • What is a Buddhist?

    David
    27 Aug 2015 | 12:12 am
    Geshe Tsultim Gyeltsen was a leading Tibetan lama and a human rights activist. He founded the Gaden Shartse Thubten Dhargye Ling (“Land of Flourishing Dharma”), a center in Long Beach, CA for the study and practice of Tibetan Buddhism, in 1978. I did not know him very well. I occasionally attended his dharma talks on Sunday mornings. He was very approachable. He often answered the phone at the center and you could engage him in a conversation. I always imagined that I could probably just show up any day and if he was available he would probably sit down with me and answer…
  • The Poet and the Rain

    David
    24 Aug 2015 | 12:45 am
    Friday’s post featured a quote from Japanese writer Kenji Miyazawa. I do not know the exact source of the quote, but have seen it around quite a bit and thought it fit. I’ve only read a few pieces of Miyazawa’s work online, and until now was only vaguely familiar with his life story, owing to his association with Nichiren Buddhism. In the last few days, I’ve learned a bit more about Kenji Miyazawa and want to share some of it with you. In addition to poetry, he wrote children’s stories, and evidently, what could be called science fiction fantasy. He was a musician and…
  • Burning Pain for the Journey

    David
    21 Aug 2015 | 12:39 am
    I had the pleasure of meeting Jimmy Carter once. It was in 1982. He was in Los Angeles to promote his book Keeping Faith: Memoirs of a President and staying at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel where I worked. A few of us had copies of the book and one of the Secret Service guys took them up to Carter’s suite for him to sign. That evening we were asked stand outside the entrance to greet the former President as he left the hotel to attend some event. Flashing that famous grin, Carter shook all our hands. As he shook mine, I thanked him for signing the book and he replied, “My pleasure.” A…
  • The End and the Means and the Killing In-between

    David
    18 Aug 2015 | 12:47 am
    The bombing in Bangkok that killed 22 people and wounded 120 took place at the Erawan Shrine, the most famous temple in Thailand and a popular attraction for tourists. Erawan Shrine was built during the mid 1950s, and its construction was plagued by so many problems that after consulting with an astrologer it was decided to dispel the bad karma by erecting a shrine to honor the Hindu deity Brahma, the god of creation. In Thailand, Brahma is known as Phra Phrom, the four-faced Buddha. According to Monday evening’s news reports, it is not yet clear who placed the three kilograms of TNT…
  • Nature is transcendental

    David
    13 Aug 2015 | 1:10 am
    Most of us realize that spending time in nature is good for mind and spirit. A new study by researchers at Stanford University more or less confirms it, according to a paper published in last month’s Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences titled “Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation.” Honestly, I was confused by the title.  I always thought nature enhanced rumination or contemplation. But I didn’t know that in psychology, rumination means to focus excessively on one’s problems and to brood on why you might be depressed. So, …
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    Zen Presence - Ideas for Meaningful Living

  • Trouble

    Dan Garner
    28 Aug 2015 | 9:22 am
    Trouble should be treated as a traffic sign redirecting our attention or efforts.  It says "Look here, but don't dwell.  Because this exists, show me how that can exist.  Because there is scarcity, show me abundance.  Because there is difficulty, show me ability and creativity.  Because there is confusion and hatred, show me clarity and compassion."Focus and attention are yours to choose.Zen Presence - Ideas for Meaningful Living 
  • As You Are

    Dan Garner
    27 Aug 2015 | 9:34 am
    "Soul is about authenticity....about finding the things in your life that are real and pure." ~ John LegendI think we all know that we live in an imperfect world.  We are sometimes able to see that imperfections are what make the world beautiful and exciting.  The unpredictability of a thunderstorm can be beautiful in itself and also makes a bright sunny day even more enjoyable in comparison. Most of the time life is so much more beautiful if we enjoy things as they are instead of wishing for something else.Though we are able to see that imperfections in the world around…
  • Dealing with Anger

    Dan Garner
    24 Aug 2015 | 8:39 am
    What triggers your (my) anger says a lot about you (me).  It says more about what is wrong "in there" than out there in the world. If you continue to blame the outside world for your anger then you are giving away your power and  you will be more dependent, less free, and more confused than ever.Next time someone makes you angry sit down and talk it out with yourself.  Really try and separate the other person out of it.  What about the event really pushed your buttons?  What did you do to allow or even invite the situation?  What vulnerability did it expose?
  • Don't Change a Thing (Prophecy)

    Dan Garner
    23 Aug 2015 | 12:52 pm
    I've spent a lot of time trying to convince the world how I'm right and they are wrong.  Hasn't worked yet but I know I'm right so I'm not gonna change a thing. (Self fulfilling prophecy).Zen Presence - Ideas for Meaningful Living
  • Wide Open

    Dan Garner
    21 Aug 2015 | 10:39 am
      It happens to all of us - we get hurt, we fall, someone disappoints us.  We get fearful and so we close ourselves off - slowly but surely.  It sneaks up on us.  Our defense mechanisms are like instinct and many times we don't even realize they are there.  We only know that life isn't as joyful as it once was and that we've become cynical and more cautious.I remember talking to a counselor years ago who asked me point blank "Why are you such a smart-ass and so cynical?"  "I don't know, it's the way I am" was my answer.  An…
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    Zen Beginnings

  • Energy Management: What No One is Talking About

    Michelle
    17 Aug 2015 | 5:00 am
    How many times have you or someone you know utter the words, “I wish there were more hours in the day.” Jim Rohn said, “Either you run the day or the day runs you.” True, but what if one concentrated on running the day with mindful energy? What I relied on the most while working […]
  • 5 Beauty Routines to Boost Your Body Image

    Cassie Brewer
    1 Jul 2015 | 4:03 am
    “Your body hears everything the mind says.” ~ Naomi Judd **This is a guest post on body image—a topic that many can relate to. I hope you enjoy it. When you look in the mirror do you smile or notice things that you want to change about yourself? Having a healthy body image is a […]
  • A Real-Life Lesson About Yoga

    Michelle
    17 Jun 2015 | 5:00 am
    “Yoga means addition – addition of energy, strength and beauty to body, mind and soul.” ― Amit Ray On January 2, 1999 I walked into my bedroom, plopped on the bed that I shared with my then-boyfriend, and prayed intently to God. With tears streaming down my face I looked up to the ceiling. “I […]
  • 5 Signs You Should Invest in Natural Sunscreen

    Michelle
    1 Jun 2015 | 5:00 am
    Now that summer almost here, and has possibly already arrived in some countries, it’s time to take a hard look at how to protect oneself from the harmful affects of the sun. Here is a another guest post from Theresa DeGregory, owner of Terra Andre’ Skin Care Products and Licensed Clinical Aestetician/Aromatherapist. She and I […]
  • 5 Reasons Why You Should Ignore Perfection

    Michelle
    11 May 2015 | 5:03 am
    I was six years old when I first learned of astrological signs. I came across the horoscope section of the New York Daily News and the words, “If you are a Virgo, you are a perfectionist,” seemed to have leapt off the page. The message rang loud and clear, and wreaked of truth. Even as […]
 
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    Cross River Meditation Center

  • Awakening To The Fourth Noble Truth Talk 3

    John Haspel
    28 Aug 2015 | 8:43 am
    Content Copyright 2014 John Haspel CrossRiverMeditation.com This is a Dhamma talk on the Buddha’s meaning of awakening as awakening relates to the fourth noble truth. This talk is the fourth of four talks on awakeningto the Four Noble Truths. This talk was presented at our Wednesday evening Dhamma class in Flemington New Jersey on August 26, 2015. I hope you find benefit from this talk. A related article is linked below. Peace. Awakening To The Fourth Noble Truth   Support CRMC Subscribe to Posts Enter your email address to receive new posts directly in your email Email Address…
  • Awakening to the Fourth Noble Truth

    John Haspel
    22 Aug 2015 | 5:52 am
    Content Copyright 2014 John Haspel CrossRiverMeditation.com In the Samyutta Nikaya 56.11, [1] Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta: Setting the Wheel of Truth in Motion, The Buddha describes awakening very simply and directly: The noble truth of dukkha has been comprehended. The noble truth of the origination of dukkha has been abandoned. The noble truth of the cessation of dukkha has been experienced. The noble truth of the way of practice leading to the cessation of dukkha has been developed. (Note: Dukkha is translated to mean stress, discomfort, suffering, disappointment, disenchantment,…
  • Awakening to the Third Noble Truth Talk 2

    John Haspel
    19 Aug 2015 | 10:50 am
    Content Copyright 2014 John Haspel CrossRiverMeditation.com Greetings Friends, This is a Dhamma talk on the Buddha’s meaning of awakening . This talk is the third of four talks on awakening as awakening relates to the Four Noble Truths. This talk was presented at our Tuesday evening Dhamma class in Frenchtown New Jersey on August 18, 2015. I hope you find benefit from this talk. A related article is linked below. Peace.   Awakening To The Third Noble Truth     Support CRMC Subscribe to Posts Enter your email address to receive new posts directly in your email Email Address…
  • Awakening to the Third Noble Truth

    John Haspel
    17 Aug 2015 | 5:00 am
    Content Copyright 2014 John Haspel CrossRiverMeditation.com (This is the third of four articles that present the Buddha's teachings on awakening. The second article is here. Awakening to the Fourth Noble Truth is linked below.) In the Samyutta Nikaya 56.11, [1] Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta: Setting the Wheel of Truth in Motion, The Buddha describes awakening very simply and directly: The noble truth of dukkha has been comprehended. The noble truth of the origination of dukkha has been abandoned. The noble truth of the cessation of dukkha has been experienced. The noble truth of the way of…
  • The Arahant Talk 2

    John Haspel
    15 Aug 2015 | 12:32 pm
    Content Copyright 2014 John Haspel CrossRiverMeditation.com Greetings Friends, This a recording of a Dhamma talk on completing the Eightfold Path and awakening, achieving Arahantship. This talk was presented at our Saturday Morning Dhamma class in Frenchtown New Jersey on August 15, 2015. I hope you find benefit from this talk. A related article is linked at the bottom of this page. Peace. The Arahant       Support CRMC Subscribe to Posts Enter your email address to receive new posts directly in your email Email Address Copyright 2014 John Haspel Creative Commons License 4.0…
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