Jesus & Buddha: Practicing Across Traditions, a review


I sat down over the weekend to watch (for a second time), this short documentary, joined by two fellow PhD students, one a Theravadin Buddhist, the other a Roman Catholic. At just 44 minutes in length, it is brief, but perhaps it is the perfect length for a high school or university class on Comparative Religions or a faith group to watch over tea and cookies. The film features three people who are intimately familiar with both traditions:Father Robert Kennedy, a Jesuit priest and Zen … [Read more...]

Kumare: Hinduism, Buddhism, Yoga, and more

Kumare, or Kumaré (or Kūmāré), is a movie about American spirituality on the fringe. However, the more we look into American spirituality, the more we see that the 'fringe' is growing. Fast. The old stalwarts of American religion: the Catholics and the Protestants, are increasingly disenfranchising their members, thus steering themselves into a future of ineffectual obscurity. Denying women's rights, protecting child-molesters, blaming the deaths of children on homosexuality, the list could go on … [Read more...]

Free book from H.H. the Dalai Lama

Beyond Religion Ebook

Yes. For another week or so, you can get a free download of the Dalai Lama's latest book, read by Martin Sheen, "Beyond Religion: Ethics for a Whole World."I've been listening to the first part of it over the last couple days and all I can say is, "wow, did the Dalai Lama read Kant?" Ethics going beyond religion? Based on some more fundamental aspect of humanity that makes us all perfectly equal? Huh? Yea, it's good.Even better than the free audio book, I'll have a physical copy to give … [Read more...]

Review of A Force of Nature

In 1.5 of the Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle observes that there are three types of life thought to be happy: the life of enjoyment, the political life, and the life of contemplation.  The life of enjoyment is a hedonistic life focused on conventional pleasures. The political life is the life of a states- person. It may aim at despotic power, or be lived for the sake of winning public honors, but in its most proper form its aim is the exercise of moral virtue and political and practical wisdom in … [Read more...]

Review of Crazy Wisdom

Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche via Crazy Wisdom Films

Recently I was sent two DVD Screeners, this one, about the life and times of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and another called "Force of Nature" about the Japanese-Canadian scientist and environmentalist David Suzuki. I will review the Suzuki movie later this week, and today I'll write a bit about the Trungpa flick.Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, who was born in Tibet prior to the Chinese invasion, lived, quite frankly, a crazy life. Yet his charisma in teaching the Dharma and ability to motivate a … [Read more...]

Review of The Buddha Walks into a Bar

The Buddha Walks into a Bar

As an introduction to Buddhist practice "for a new generation," Lodro Rinzler's first venture into the world of writing is well done.  The Buddha Walks into a Bar is broken into four parts, each progressing a little further, from "how to get your act together" to eventually "relaxing into magic." Rinzler does a good job of weaving ancient wisdom with the kinds of situations many young people will find themselves in today: from relationship break-ups to experimenting with alcohol. His use of pop … [Read more...]

An American Buddhist Life: Reviewed

Subtitled "Memoirs of a Modern Dharma Pioneer," Charles Prebish's latest book is a tour de force of American Buddhist studies. While I give it 5 of 5 stars, it won't be a book for everyone. As memoirs go, it is excellent: comprehensive, revealing, honest, and straightforward. But unless you're in one of the relatively small fields of American Buddhist Studies or Buddhist Ethics, Charles Prebish might be little more than a curiosity to you.But, if you're like me, and immensely interested in … [Read more...]