China gives Tibetans a search engine, immediately censors the Dalai Lama

After over 3 years of work, China has debuted its first ever Tibetan-language search engine: yongzin.com (which means "teacher" in Tibetan). The front page sports the bright blue, red, green, and yellow that are well-known to Google users, but the search results are very much a reflection of China's, and not Google's, priorities. According to the Wall Street Journal: A quick image search for the Dalai Lama, for example, requires sifting through pages of results before locating any of the man … [Read more...]

Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche on the “outdated” Tulku system in Tibetan Buddhism

In a long (4000+ word) post on facebook yesterday, the Buddhist teacher and filmmaker, well known for his wit and sense of humor, speaks about the need for reform in the system of reincarnated teachers in Tibetan Buddhism known as tulkus.Titled "Time for radical change in how we raise our tulkus," the document has eight sections. Excerpted here are those sections with key points and quotations.The document itself was prompted by the choice of Jamgon Kongtrul Rinpoche to leave his role as … [Read more...]

Tibetan Nun commits suicide as China destroys vast Buddhist religious city

This is Larung Gar a year ago. It is a vast monastic complex in eastern Tibet (in China's Sichuan Province) housing as many as 40,000 Tibetan Buddhist monks and nuns (10,000 being a more likely number). Recently, it has come under scrutiny by the Chinese government and demolitions have recently begun, threatening up to half of the monastics living there.The town has grown rapidly, from just a handful of disciples of the Tibetan teacher from the Nyingma tradition, Khenpo Jigme Phuntsok, in … [Read more...]

Tibetan Buddhist nuns make history with Geshema Degrees (Doctorates in Buddhist Philosophy)

From the Tibetan Nuns Project: Seattle, WA: Twenty Tibetan Buddhist nuns have just made history, becoming the first Tibetan women to successfully pass all the exams for the Geshema degree, equivalent to a Doctorate in Buddhist philosophy. Exam results were announced by the Department of Religion and Culture of the Central Tibetan Administration. All 20 candidates for the degree passed.Their success fulfills a longstanding wish of His Holiness the Dalai Lama and marks a new chapter in the … [Read more...]

Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche gives Morgan Freeman the Buddhist “shortcut” teachings for happiness

We need to care, love and respect each other, that's the source of happiness. ~Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche.Read my full review of the "Story of God" episode on miracles here. … [Read more...]

“The Story of God” – A Buddhist Perspective on Evil

In this week's episode of "The Story of God" (airing May 1), Morgan Freeman explores the concept of evil. As with previous topics, apocalypse and creation, their is no perfect word for evil in the Asian languages of Buddhism. However, as with those concepts, when we tease them out, exploring their etymological and historical roots, we see that even in English and associated languages, these words can mean much more than we commonly take them to mean.Getting beyond the superficial, we find … [Read more...]

Letting identity arise unimpeded: Buddhism confronting racism

A guest post by Lama Justin von Bujdoss (Repa Dorje Odzer)On April 22nd the 2nd Race and Buddhism Conference will be held at Harvard Divinity School. This is a unique gathering of academics, dharma teachers and activists meeting to explore how engaged responses to the problems of racism within the dharma world can be developed, as well as how dharma can be a response to heal the pain and suffering that racism creates in a more general sense. On a personal level, this much needed conference … [Read more...]

Building Bridges of Loving-kindness: Mongolia’s Rich History and Culture of Buddhism

A guest post by Michael Fouts, Executive Director of the Grand Maitreya Project West In today’s world the majority of new construction projects and monuments are created with a commercial interest in mind. There seems to be fewer symbols of love and peace being created these days, especially in the west. With the current state of the world and the real need for peace on Earth, creating more universal symbols of love and peace seems to be more important than ever before.In 1924 Mongolia b … [Read more...]