Dhammananda Bhikkhuni and Thailand’s “secret” Buddhist Nuns

ven molini and ven dhamma vijaya with the author in bodh gaya 2010

Danny Fisher has already shared this short documentary looking inside Thailand's only all-female monastery but I came across it again today and found it worth re-sharing. As Danny notes from the website Dharma Documentaries: This is a short but informative and positive look at the current state of bhikkhunis in Thailand with interviews with people on both sides of the debate.The documentary is made as part of the Secret Tribes series which is fronted by Malaysian presenter Ezra Zaid... The … [Read more...]

Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche speaks on Universal Responsibility at Harvard Divinity School

dzigar_kongtrul_rinpoche

Earlier this month, Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche gave a one-day seminar on the topic of Universal Responsibility to students at Harvard Divinity School. From the video page: In this one night seminar given to students at Harvard University's School of Divinity, Kongtrul Rinpoche explains that not all learning is academic. In fact, the best kind of education shapes our hearts just as much as our minds. Self-reflecting upon experience and coming to see that all beings share the same internal life -- … [Read more...]

Tibetan Sky Burial (photos) UPDATED: Propaganda vs Scholarship

In 2012 I found and shared some images of a then-recent Tibetan Sky Burial (original post is here). Over the years I have received a fair amount of feedback on the post, mostly of the "wow" and "thank you for sharing" nature. However, one commenter, using the handle @Tibetans at twitter, has repeatedly asked that I remove the post. In his/her own words, a recent tweet reads: "@Buddhistethics Again please stop promoting Chinese propaganda against Tibetan in occupied #Tibet, be human. #Buddhism … [Read more...]

A Very Buddhist Thanksgiving with VIDEO from Mary Grace Orr, Rev. Thich Hang Dat, Sensei Bob Oshita and Ajahn Brahm

Meditating turkey - may all beings be well

These two people are hard to find in the world. Which two? The one who is first to do a kindness, and the one who is grateful and thankful for a kindness done."— AN 2.118I'm back in Montana, enjoying time with my family - mostly eating, watching TV/movies, and playing cards, a good break from phd/teaching/etc life in England. This is, for me, always the best time of the year. Time with family, with no schedule, no deadlines, nothing to do. Just being.In the midst of that, it has b … [Read more...]

Buddhists in Pink, a look at nuns in Burma/Myanmar

Burmese nuns on alms rounds, Burma 2011

The NY Times recently posted a video taking us briefly inside the world of female monastic life in contemporary Burma. Have a look:They report that, "Enrollment is rising at the Aung Thawada Nunnery School on the northern border of Yangon. The nuns, whose ages range from 9 to 94, join for a variety of reasons, including to escape poverty or abuse."It was great to see that the reporter, Chelsi Moy, is a young woman from my home town of Helena, Montana and I even remember her … [Read more...]

Burma (Myanmar) in HD

jschwarz-myanmar

In commemoration of 8/8/88 I thought I'd post a short video showing the grand, beautiful, and peaceful side of Burma, the side I remember most strongly when reflecting on my short time there. This is shot in gorgeous ultra-HD, 4096x2304 resolution, four times greater than regular 1080p HD. Unfortunately, few of us have monitors that can do much with that, but even at the 1080 HD setting, it is stunning. You can follow the photographer, Jason Schwarz, on … [Read more...]

How Reza Aslan made a book about religion a best-seller and what we can learn from it

reza_aslan

As an educator in religious studies I was intrigued by Reza Aslan's book Zealot: the Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth when I first heard about it 2 or 3 weeks ago. I listened to a couple interviews (NPR and HuffPo) and thought, "this is interesting enough, but I don't know if a) this is really groundbreaking work, or b) this is sound scholarship."So I asked some scholars closer to the field and received at best lukewarm responses. I'm not an expert, I haven't read the book, and this is a … [Read more...]

“Bones of the Buddha” to air on PBS

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via WNET:Watch Bones of the Buddha - Preview on PBS. See more from Secrets of the Dead.If you haven't seen PBS's The Buddha, Tuesday the 23rd is a great chance to see it, and catch the first airing on PBS of Bones of the Buddha.   This summer, PBS is dedicating a full evening to the Buddha, anchored by an intriguing new Secrets of the Dead episode, Bones of the Buddha.  The film presents a convincing collection of evidence that suggests an amateur archaeologist discovered the leader’s sa … [Read more...]


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