Do Archaeological Discoveries at Lumbini Really Change the Estimated Date of the Buddha’s Birth? [UPDATED]

Though this story doesn't yet seem to have an angle relevant to the social justice focus of this blog, a lot of people asked me this week about an article that appeared in the New York Times. The report details an archaeological discovery at Lumbini in Nepal, the site of the Buddha's birth, and suggests that it may influence how we estimate the timeline of the Buddha's life. Author John Noble Wilford says: Until now, archaeological evidence favored a date [for the Buddha's birth] no earlier … [Read more...]

Buddhist Global Relief’s 2013 Los Angeles Walk to Feed the Hungry

The participants in Buddhist Global Relief's 2013 Walk to Feed the Hungry in Los Angeles, CA, November 17th, 2013. Photo by Tom Mortiz.

Last weekend, I had the great pleasure of participating in Buddhist Global Relief’s “Walk to Feed the Hungry” in Santa Monica, CA. My fundraising goal was $1,000, and I ultimately raised $1,135. For that, I owe a huge thank you to the following people... my parents, James and Dana Fisher Charles Prebish Maia Duerr Matthew Brensilver Yasmin Seneviratne and James Piper John and Jennique Bangs Horrigan Judy Hsu Debra Rogers Jeannie and Brian Rosenthal Philip, Katy, and Henry Miller Helen … [Read more...]

Calling All Funny Buddhists…

This from our friend, the great Buddhist scholar Charles Prebish: Dear Colleagues and Friends:John Negru (Karma Yonten Gyatso), publisher of Sumeru Books, and I are collecting a series of anecdotal stories for inclusion in a book we are editing called "The Little Book of Buddhist Humor." In difficult times, we feel that the Buddhist world has the opportunity to contribute to and inject some happy, Buddhist-inspired humor into our everyday lives.As such, we're inviting any of you who … [Read more...]

“Cambodia’s Marching Monks”

Al Jazeera English has wonderful, in-depth reporting and photography about the "Buddhist monks from Phnom Penh [who] have marched 25 kilometres through dense jungle into western Cambodia in protest against the environmental destruction of one of the country's few remaining pristine rainforests." Take a look here. … [Read more...]

A New Interview with Shodo Spring about her “Compassionate Earth Walk” from the Tar Sands of Alberta to Nebraska

Between the Lines has a new interview with Soto Zen priest Shodo Spring about her “Compassionate Earth Walk" from the Tar Sands of Alberta to Nebraska. You can read it here.Shodo's Compassionate Earth Walks are "a physical walk through the heart of North America, a moving spiritual community dedicating our energy to nourishing the earth, and an invitation to all humans to wake up, end the destruction, and return to our home in the community of life.”I previously blogged about her and a wo … [Read more...]

The 5th Khoryug Conference on Environmental Protection for Tibetan Buddhist Monasteries and Nunneries in the Himalayas

This past week saw the 5th Khoryug Conference on Environmental Protection for Tibetan Buddhist Monasteries and Nunneries in the Himalayas take place in New Delhi, India. Organized by the World Wildlife Fund's Sacred Earth program and Khoryug, a network of 50 Buddhist monasteries, the event focused on "fresh water conservation and preservation of the fragile ecosystem in the high Himalayan ranges and the Tibetan plateau." His Holiness the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorje, told Voice of Am … [Read more...]

The International Network for Engaged Buddhists and Dr. Maung Zarni on Buddhist Islamophobia in Sri Lanka and Burma

The Star reported recently on the International Buddhist-Muslim Forum on Peace and Sustainability, held recently at the Institute of Islamic Understanding in Malaysia. Noteworthy for readers of this blog were statements from Dr. Harsha Kumara Navaratne, chairman of the International Network for Engaged Buddhists, who was quoted as saying to the gathering: The people in Sri Lanka live in separate areas, attend separate schools and speak separate languages. This isolation contributes to mistrust a … [Read more...]

Día de Los Muertos at University of the West

Altar de Los Muertos at University of the West. Photo by the author.

Recently, at University of the West, the Buddhist-inspired institution of higher education where I direct a Master of Divinity in Buddhist Chaplaincy program, an altar of the dead (pictured above) appeared for Día de Los Muertos (the "Day of the Dead"). Created by a group of students, staff, and faculty, under the leadership of Alma Ramon, our Administrative Assistant to Academic Program Heads and Human Resources Assistant, the altar became the center of our campus's first celebration of the M … [Read more...]


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