Digital Dharma

The Middle Path, One Day At A Time


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From Tricycle.com

Ask Pamela Gayle White about Tibetan visualization practice. The noted translator and dharma teacher will be taking questions until December 21.

Buddhism emphasizes the emptiness of all phenomena and does not posit a personal god. Does that mean that Buddhism is amoral and nihilistic? Read Joseph Goldstein‘s answers from our most recently featured Q&A here.

Can you teach your child about death? Read Family Dharma: The Elephant’s Footprint. Beth Roth writes about helping our children understand death.

On Generosity: Gifts That Keep Giving. Joan Duncan Oliver profiles some of the better options for compassionate gift-giving this holiday season.

And keep an eye on our Editor’s Blog where we report on books, Burma and all Buddhist issues of the day!


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Excuse me for not dying

What would Buddha do?

Every spring and fall, enlightenment-seekers from all over come here to find out, converging for arduous weeklong retreats at the Bodhi Manda Zen Center in a red rock canyon among the thermal springs and Indian pueblos west of Santa Fe.

Dressed in black robes, they strive to live in the moment and awaken to the oneness of everything by rising at 3 a.m. for 18-hour sessions sitting lotus-style in the zenda, or meditation hall, eating communal vegan meals in silence, chanting and taking restorative dips in the hot pools.

But mostly they come to practice with an impish, smooth-faced Japanese monk, Joshu Sasaki Roshi, a 100-year-old Rinzai Zen master, one of the oldest in the world, who tells followers, “Excuse me for not dying.”

Monk says, ‘Excuse me for not dying’ / Rinzai Zen master challenges students with tough love – Buddhist style


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Cave With a View

I sit in a pink plastic lawn chair in front of my borrowed meditation cave. The afternoon is perfect, a warm cedar-scented breeze sighing through the branches of the deodar cedars on the hill. Tiny birds chirp in the underbrush. My rosary drops onto my lap, my mantra recitation slurs to a halt.

Past my bare toes is a gulf of bluish, haze-softened air. Far below, the sacred lake glints like dull-green jade. The high Himalayas are visible today, low and pale across the horizon.

Cave With a View


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Buddhist Anger Management Techniques

Anger is one of the most common and destructive delusions, and it afflicts our mind almost every day. To solve the problem of anger we first need to recognize the anger within our mind, acknowledge how it harms both ourself and others, and appreciate the benefits of being patient in the face of difficulties. We then need to apply practical methods in our daily life to reduce our anger and finally to prevent it from arising at all.

Anger Management Techniques


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Monk puts new face on Buddhism

PORT ARTHUR — Bhante Kassapa is the new, blue-eyed face of Vietnamese Buddhism.

The U.S. Air Force veteran, one-time Franciscan monk and former airport communications trainer will this weekend become what is thought to be the first white American to don the robes of a senior monk in the Vietnamese Buddhist tradition.

Port Arthur monk puts new face on Buddhism | Chron.com – Houston Chronicle


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Change Your Mind — How to Meditate – wikiHow

Many folks think meditation is difficult, or that you have to be religious.  Not true.  This article simplifies and demystifies it nicely.

Meditating a few minutes each day is a proven stress reducer,
and it can improve your view of life as well. There are as many
different meditation methods as there are instructors (for
meditation), but if all you need is a basic, universal method,
here’s an easy way to start.

How to Meditate – wikiHow


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Buddhist Malas and Prayer Beads

Malas are prayer or rosary beads used for reciting repetitions of prayers or chants called “mantras,”  and help to facilitate ritualized meditation practice. They have been used for thousands of years in Tibetan, Indian, Chinese, Japanese  Buddhism and Hinduism. Prayer beads in different forms are used in Christianity and Islam as well.

Prayer beads are used in every major religion.  This is a commercial page, but a well-written, informative article.

Malas- How to use Buddhist Malas and Prayer Beads


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Buddhist fest lets Nashville in on the secret of inner peace

The Buddha preached: “Even if thieves carve you limb from limb with a double-handed saw, if you make your mind hostile you are not following my teaching.” The Dalai Lama says: “Hatred will not cease by hatred, but by love alone. This is the ancient law.”

Impossibly naive words. The only thing more naive is the assumption that the shock-and-awe business of high-strung 21st century reality (nukes, car bombs, arms sales, torture cells, spouse abuse, dog-fighting) is a worthy, practical solution for future human security.

Buddhist fest lets Nashville in on the secret of inner peace – Nashville, Tennessee – Saturday, 09/01/07 – Tennessean.com


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Change Your Mind Day

In 1993 Tricycle created Change Your Mind Day, an afternoon of free meditation instruction,
as a way of introducing the general public to Buddhist thought and
practice. Tricycle decided to hold the teachings out of doors, as in
the time of the Buddha, in the hopes of welcoming people who otherwise
might shy away from the formality of a zendo or gompa. We booked a hill
in Central Park and put up fliers around town.

A few hundred
people showed up for the first Change Your Mind Day, a pleasant mix of
newcomers and seasoned practitioners. Seven Buddhist teachers from
different lineages gave instruction. Allen Ginsberg and Philip Glass
performed “Do the Meditation Rock.” Maggie Newman got the crowd up on
their feet to do twenty minutes of tai-ch’i. A lone shakuhachi ended
the day as the sun began to set behind the trees.

Change Your Mind Day has since grown into a worldwide event.
Some gatherings are large, attracting thousands of people, while others
may consist of just a handful sitting together and reading guided
meditations from a variety of Buddhist traditions (see the Change Your Mind Day Meditation Kit).
But whether attended by many or few, the event is always powerful,
connecting thousands of silent sitters around the globe. Please contact
Tricycle for more information.

Change Your Mind Day


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Atlanta gets first Zen master

His disciples follow him into a small sanctuary near Emory University. They endure what is seemingly easy, but difficult to do. Human minds and bodies, especially in this modern age of myriad distractions, are not trained for emptiness.

But it is detachment that awakens your senses and lends stability, says Elliston, abbot at Atlanta’s Soto Zen Center, where in a secret ceremony tonight, he will become Atlanta’s first Zen master, and one of only 80 in America.

Atlanta gets first Zen master | ajc.com  (8/3/07)