Posts Tagged ‘Tibetan Buddhism’

“In this well-written book by Anyen Rinpoche, the connection between mindfulness and Vajrayana practice is explored. Rinpoche advocates for the idea that mindfulness is not something to be focused on solely at the beginning of practice, but should be continued throughout. Momentary Buddhahood also discusses the idea that achieving enlightenment isn’t an all or nothing proposition; that it happens incrementally; and from time to time, each of us experiences glimpses of total enlightenment, however fleeting. At the base of all of it though, is mindfulness, which should not be thought of as exclusive to Zen nor should it be thought of as non-essential to Tantric practice; it is essential to all phases and all aspects of Buddhism, and especially to those who have taken the Bodhisattva Vow. Anyen Rinpoche will be at the Boulder Bookstore tonight to speak about and sign his book. “–Elephant Journal

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Recently Tana Pesso, author of the exciting forthcoming title, First Invite Love In (His Holiness Penor Rinpoche is also a contributor) was featured in the Gloucester Daily Times for practicing what she teaches.

Rescuing ‘Miss Biz’ Missing Shih Tzu puppy retrieved from marsh

By Jonathan L’Ecuyer
Staff Writer

ROCKPORT — A dog-lover and the author of an upcoming book about the Buddhist notion of compassion endured hours of torrential downpours and waist-high mud at Mill Pond early Saturday morning — all to rescue a Shih Tzu puppy named Miss Biz who went missing last Tuesday.

The 9-pound puppy captured the hearts of many in the community after she escaped from the home of caretaker Betty Alaimo of Jewett Street, and was reported missing last Tuesday afternoon.

Alaimo and her friend Colleen Magrath spent hours hanging posters and making phone calls last week, efforts that drew a great deal of attention to the missing canine and inspired many in the community to help — and not because they wanted the $1,000 reward.

Town Hall employee Mary Bourguignon was “really instrumental” in the search, said Magrath. Bourgignon called all the local veterinary clinics and animal shelters in the first hours after the dog went missing, but to no avail.

Then, at 2 a.m. Saturday, some 31/2 days after Miss Biz disappeared, something in the swamp behind Tana Pesso’s Mill Lane house awoke the senses of her two dogs.

“They started barking and barking,” Pesso said yesterday. “I woke up and heard this barking from the marsh behind my house.”

Pesso quickly realized the barking was not coming from her dogs, both of which she rescued.

You can read the whole article here.

And find out more about First Invite Love In here.

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Step By Step is a practical introduction to the profound meditation methods of Tibetan Buddhism. Based on the teachings of the great Tibetan saint and founder of the Gelug School, Tsongkhapa, the techniques explained here are simple, direct and possess the power to radically alter the way we see the world and ourselves. They present a time-tested means for counteracting depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and countless other forms of mental suffering. This book provides the reader with all of the instruction necessary to embark on the path of transformation that Tibetan Buddhists have refined over the last 1300 years. Geshe Wangchen provides detailed explanations on the six perfections, emptiness, the preciousness life, and how to develop the genuine altruistic wish to live ones life in a way that brings only benefit to all living things. Geshe Wangchen provides three life changing meditations that the reader can immediately integrate into their lives in order to work toward a life experience that is more compassionate, confident, and full of wisdom.

*Includes short meditation practices on, Chenrezig (Avalokiteshvara), Manjushri, and Vajrapani

*Prayers and instructions for Refuge, Bodhicitta, and Mandala Offering.

Get your copy here are start taking steps on the path.

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New York, USA — Do bacteria require light?” Tashi, one of my best students, wants to know. He sits there in Dharamsala, India, like his Buddhist monk colleagues, cross-legged on the floor in maroon robes, six hours a day learning science from a tall white Jewish guy from North Carolina.

Religion often has a hard time of it, especially among academics, and especially among scientists. Of course academics have no problem studying religion and raising big money to establish endowed chairs, centers, and institutes devoted to just that. But when actually being religious or even discussing personal beliefs or spirituality at all, is rare and, if anything, discouraged. To me this is an odd and disturbing social conundrum: let’s take our best thinkers and idea-people, theorizers, and policy developers and eradicate any discussion of personal belief, religion, or spirituality from their official discourse. Brilliant.

Read it all here.

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We recently received these wonderful photos of His Holiness with our new release A Buddhist Response to the Climate Emergency.

We hope you enjoy them as much as we do.

HHK2The book includes contributions from:

the Dalai Lama, the Seventeenth Karmapa, Sakya Trizin,Dudjom Rinpoche, Chatral Rinpoche, Ato Rinpoche,Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche,Thrangu Rinpoche,Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche, Ringu Tulku Rinpoche,Tsoknyi Rinpoche, Robert Aitken, Joanna Macy, Bhikkhu Bodhi, Joseph Goldstein,Taigen Dan Leighton, Susan Murphy,Matthieu Ricard,Hozan Alan Senauke, Lin Jensen, and Thich Nhat Hanh


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by Seth Mydans, International Herald Tribune, May 6, 2009

Under a new Constitution, government programs must be judged by the happiness they produce, not by the economic benefits

THIMPHU, Bhutan — If the rest of the world cannot get it right in these unhappy times, this tiny Buddhist kingdom high in the Himalayan mountains says it is working on an answer.

“Greed, insatiable human greed,” said Prime Minister Jigme Thinley of Bhutan, describing what he sees as the cause of today’s economic catastrophe in the world beyond the snow-topped mountains. “What we need is change,” he said in the whitewashed fortress where he works. “We need to think gross national happiness.”

The notion of gross national happiness was the inspiration of the former king, Jigme Singye Wangchuck, in the 1970s as an alternative to the gross national product. Now, the Bhutanese are refining the country’s guiding philosophy into what they see as a new political science, and it has ripened into government policy just when the world may need it, said Kinley Dorji, secretary of information and communications.

Read it all here.

For more on Bhutan check out this beautiful book.

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We are happy to announce that Wisdom will be launching  The Middle Way: Faith Grounded in Reason at His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s teachings this Saturday, May, 2nd at Gillette Stadium. If you dont already have tickets its not too late. They can still be purchased at Ticket Master.

In this luminous presentation, the Dalai Lama lays out the Middle Way-“the way of the intelligent person” who approaches all matters, including matters of faith and devotion, with the highest spirit of critical inquiry and does so without falling into the traps of fixed ideas or extreme views. With fresh emphasis, this peerless and beloved teacher links Tibetan Buddhism to its deep roots in the ancient scholastic tradition of Nalanda University and to the profound analytical teachings of the seminal Indian master Nagarjuna. As the Dalai Lama explores in depth Nagarjuna’s Fundamental Stanzas on the Middle Way-a text of radical importance to the entirety of the Mahayana Buddhist tradition-he illuminates such subtle and easily misunderstood topics as the nature of self and no-self, dependent origination, and the differing roles of relative and absolute truths. This volume also includes a rich exploration of the Tibetan master Tsongkhapa’s Three Principal Aspects of the Path, offering the reader an opportunity to put these matters of deepest philosophical import into direct practice.

Wisdom will have a booth at His Holiness’s talk where you can come by and meet some of the Wisdom staff and pick up your copy of The Middle Way.

If you can’t make it to the talk you can order a copy here.

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dkWisdom editor David Kittelstrom went to India last month to attend the Translating the Words of the Buddha conference sponsored by the Khyentse Foundation. The conference brought together mostly Tibetan-to-English translators from around the world and set as a hundred-year goal the translation of the entire Tibetan Buddhist canon and seminal Tibetan commentaries into all major languages. Translators hammered out the training, tools, and policies that need to be created to achieve this goal in the best way, and they charged the Khyentse Foundation with the task of setting up a non-denominational body to raise funds and ensure that vision becomes a reality. Below is David’s report on the conference.


Though not a translator myself, I was privileged to attend the invitation-only conference entitled Translating the Words of the Buddha held March 16–20 in Bir, India, at Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche’s Deer Park center. Participants were well pampered and shielded from the chaos often attendant on traveling in India; we encountered nothing like the hardships faced by the translators and pandits who helped usher the Indian Buddhist tradition across the Himalayas to Tibet a thousand or so years earlier. The conference was book-ended by audiences with His Holiness the Karmapa and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

Of the approximately four dozen participants, several were Tibetan lamas, and during discussions, they were not granted a privileged status. Each, however, was allotted time to address the conference individually, as were some Western presenters, including Robert Thurman, Peter Skilling (by video), Jeffrey Hopkins (by video), and Matthieu Ricard. While the non-Tibetan participants came from a broad spectrum of lineages and backgrounds, both academic and practitioner, the Tibetan lamas present were largely heirs of the great Rimé lama, Jamyang Khyentse Chökyi Lodrö, such as Jigme Khyentse Rinpoche, Tulku Pema Wangyal, Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, Orgyen Tobgyal Rinpoche, Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche, and Chokyi Nyima Rinpoche (by video). The lone Geluk-trained lama present was Doboom Tulku, the director of Tibet House in New Delhi.

Dzongsar Khyenste Rinpoche evoked a sense of precariousness and urgency when opening the conference, noting how much wisdom and scholarly knowledge had already been lost to time since the Tibetans first fled their native land: “Those in the Tibetan community still able to speak and understand classical Tibetan are extremely rare. At the rate at which the language is disappearing, fifty years from now there will be almost no Tibetans who can read the [canonical Buddhist texts] and understand their meaning.”

The goal of the conference was clear from the start—to develop a plan to translate the Tibetan canon: the Kangyur (the words of the Buddha) and the Tengyur (the classical, mostly Indian treatises), starting with the former. According to Dzongsar Khyenste,

If you were to ask someone naïve, like myself, what I think should be translated—if I were given the chance to set our priorities—what would be the top of my list? Without doubt I would have to say that the teachings of the Buddha—the sutras—should take precedence over the shastras. Then, as the shastras written by Indian authors are more authoritative and carry more weight, I would say that they should be translated before those of the Tibetan authors.

Rinpoche also candidly noted and lamented that Tibetans have often promoted the works of their own teachers over the teachings of the Buddha, focusing more on propagating individual lineages than on the Buddhadharma as a whole, and he noted as well the practice of using the Kangyur merely as a tool for collecting merit and not as an object of study and contemplation. Larry Mermelstein of the Nalanda Translation Committee noted that if Tibetan lamas began teaching the sutras, the project of translating them would happen naturally.

The first two days were dedicated to hammering out pithy hundred-year, twenty-five-year, and five-year goals. The longest-term goal was to translate the entirety of the Kangyur, Tengyur, and seminal indigenous Tibetan commentaries into all major languages and make them universally available. The medium goal was to translate the entire Kangyur into English. The near-term goal was to get the tools and training framework for such a massive endeavor in place and get a number of representative translations under way.

The day after the conference ended, we were bused two hours up the road to Dharamsala to meet with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. At seventy-three, he is vigorous and penetrating, commanding but utterly without pretension. His opinion was that the Tengyur should take precedence—those are the texts that form the basis of the study curriculum, and besides, the Kangyur could be misinterpreted without the clarifications of the later treatises. He also said that translators do not need to have an oral transmission but only a suitable motivation, and that translations should rely on Sanskrit when that is available. As an aside, he noted that even his own brother reads English translations when trying to make sense of classical Tibetan texts, and how translating the canon will help Tibetans preserve their own culture as well.

Some commitments to translate particular texts, especially perfection of wisdom sutras, were offered by individual participants during the conference, and messages came in from the president of Taiwan and the prime minister of Bhutan hailing the conference and its goals. Much still remains to be hammered out, however, in what the translation project, tentatively titled the Buddhist Literary Heritage Project, will look like. What will the governing body look like? Will it, for instance, achieve its stated goal to involve all the Tibetan Buddhist constituencies? And how will the translations be published and made available (a question close to my own heart)? Is the goal, for instance, merely to ensure that all the works get published somewhere, or is it to bring them all out under the same imprint? These two big questions were broached but not resolved.

Whatever the answer to these pressing questions—and my skepticism around them is likely greater than it was for most of the others present—the conference undoubtedly advanced the commitment among those present to the virtues of collaboration. The conference signaled a shift in approach from the lone translator toiling away alongside a stack of dictionaries to a linked-up community of translators sharing resources and helping guide one another to a superior and more consensual presentation of Tibetan texts in the major languages of the modern world.

You can view David’s photos of the proceedings at http://www.flickr.com/photos/21107770@N02/sets/72157615909919555/

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DHARAMSALA, India (Reuters) – He is a “living Buddha” with an iPod, the 23-year-old possible successor to the Dalai Lama who may bridge the gap between Tibet’s elder leaders and both an alienated Tibetan youth and a suspicious China.

For the Karmapa Lama, who fled Tibet nine years ago to India and is now the third highest ranking Lama, it is time for Tibetans to modernize to survive.

To read the entire article click here.

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Wisdom is happy to announce the release of the latest volume from The Library of Tibetan Classics.

The Crystal Mirror of Philosophical Systems by Thuken Losang Chokyi Nyima (1737-1802), is arguably the widest-ranging account of religious philosophies ever written in pre-modern Tibet. Like most Tibetan texts on philosophical systems, this work covers the major schools of India, both Buddhist and non-Buddhist, but then goes on to discuss in detail the entire range of Tibetan traditions as well, with seperate chapters on the Nyingma, Kadam, Kagyu, Shije, Sakya, Jonang, Geluk, and Bon schools. Not resting there, Thuken goes on to describe the major traditions of China–Confucian, Daoist, and the multiple varieties of Buddhist–as well as those of Mongolia, Khotan, and even Shambhala. The Crystal Mirror of Philosophical Systems is unusual, too, in its concern not just to describe and analyze doctrines, but to trace the historical development of the various traditions. The Crystal Mirror of Philosophical Systems is an eloquent and erudite presentation exploring the religious history and philosophical systems of an array of Asian Cultures–and offering evidence that the serious and sympathetic study of the history of religions has not been a monopoly of Western scholarship.View all the available Library of Tibetan Classics volumes.

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