Buddhist abbot Ajahn Brahm says that it is ‘Unacceptable’ that religion has been so cruel to LGBTIQs

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Before a large audience in Singapore in June, the outspoken Theravadin Buddhist monk cited the Buddha's call for compassion toward all sentient beings as a starting point for a Buddhist position on the LGBTIQ community. He said he was very proud to be able to perform a gay marriage in Norway. He continued:"There is nothing in the sutras, in the teachings of the Buddha, which discriminates against anybody no matter what race, religion, or sexual orientation. I do ask all Buddhists to please sh … [Read more...]

Sand castles: Buddhist advice on what holds us back in life

Tibetan sand mandala

I stumbled across this sutta the other day and appreciated the fact that the Buddha, 2500 years ago, was talking about sand castles (or 'dirt houses'). The images of amazing creativity, wonder (perhaps infatuation), and impermanence of such structures couldn't have been very different from what we see and think of today. This is especially true for those who know of the Tibetan Buddhist practice of creating, and then destroying, beautiful sand sculptures like the one above (see the video below … [Read more...]

Korean nuns rap the Heart Sutra

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From the HuffingtonPost: More than 300 nuns and monks convened in a Seoul temple on Thursday to participate in a prayer competition hosted by the Jogye Order, Korea's largest Buddhist organization. While most recited traditional prayers, several brave nuns took to the stage with rap and hip hop performances.A group of three nuns performed a variation on the classic Heart Sutra, beating on traditional drums and rapping their own lyrics: "Great wisdom, perfect wisdom. Buddha's teachings that s … [Read more...]

A Make-up tutorial with a surprisingly Buddhist message

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A make-up video as a topic for Buddhist reflection? That probably won't be everyone's cup of tea, but I'd say give it a watch, or skip right to the reading below it.The description of the video, published last month, reads "The power of make up is incredible, but the power of you is cray cray." And since I came across this via the wonderful Full Contact Enlightenment page on facebook, I gave it a watch.While much of it is the sort of feel-good, youthful optimism we either love or hate, … [Read more...]

Novak Djokovic combines Buddhist Mindfulness AND Ethics with Tennis at Wimbledon

Novak Djokovic, UNICEF National Ambassador for Serbia and the celebrated tennis champion, visited the “Beneath the Linden Trees” kindergarten in the village of Lesnica, 150 km west of the Belgrade capital, to raise awareness of the importance of investment in early development and early childhood learning. During the visit, Novak spent time with the children, talked to their parents and caregivers, and met with local authorities. (Photo: Tanjug)

World number 1 tennis player (now #2 behind Nadal), Novak Djokovic has scraped through a tough match against the Croation player Marin Čilić and an equally thrilling contest with Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov. That brings the Serbian Novak Djokovic once again to the Wimbledon finals (games start at 2pm GMT / 9am EST, Sunday, July 6th).Last year, when Djokovic was in the same position playing against Andy Murray, it was widely reported, including here, that part of his training included visits to … [Read more...]

Petition created for the United Nations Day of Vesak (UNDV) to allow Ajahn Brahm’s gender equality paper in 2015

ajahn brahm talk on women UNDV

Last month, Ajahn Brahm, one of the world's best known Theravadin monks, was scheduled to give a talk on gender equality (and lack thereof) in Buddhism in Vietnam at the annual UN Day of Vesak conference. However, at the last minute his talk was canceled.Here Ajahn Brahm talks about why:Now you can sign a petition, launched today in the UK, asking the UNDV conference to allow his talk to be given next year. According to the petition site at Avaaz:We, the undersigned, are astounded … [Read more...]

Happy Saga Dawa Duchen – Tibetan Buddhism’s holiest day

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Saga Dawa is the fourth lunar month of the Tibetan calendar, this year falling between May 29 and June 27. It is the holiest time of the year for Tibetan Buddhists.  The middle of the month, the full moon day, is the most important. On that day the fruits of one's karma (actions) are said to increase one billion (1,000,000,000) times or more. It is the day that Tibetan Buddhists celebrate the birth, awakening, and death of the Buddha.That day, known as Saga Dawa Duchen, is today, Friday, … [Read more...]

The Creative Power of Mindfulness, guest post by Janet Kathleen Ettele

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Mindfulness. Impermanence. Karma. Compassion. Whether or not these words are part of your every-day vocabulary, even if unspoken they are an active part of your life.Several years ago I completed the certification program for Life Coaching at New York University, SCPS. I learned about the Model of Human Functioning; a model that demonstrates the sequence of events that occur within human experience. The sequence is this: 1st Thoughts, 2nd Feelings, 3rd Actions, and 4th Results.People … [Read more...]


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