Tag: secularism

Buddhist Activism and Quietism

| February 6, 2017 | 9 Comments
Buddhist Activism and Quietism

Many of us are looking for the right way to engage with contemporary political concerns. What does Buddhism have to teach us? A couple of recent articles have taken this question in opposite directions. In “Let’s Stand Up Together”, Bhikkhu Bodhi argues that Buddhism has a number of important ethical lessons to teach that rise above simple notions […]

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Insight Buddhism is Secular Buddhism: Reviewing Heartwood

| December 5, 2016 | 17 Comments
Insight Buddhism is Secular Buddhism: Reviewing Heartwood

  Wendy Cadge’s 2005 book Heartwood: The First Generation of Theravada Buddhism in America is a fascinating look at the way this form of Buddhism is adapting to contemporary American life. Although the book stems from her PhD dissertation it is readable, filled with descriptions of practitioners and their approaches. Cadge spent several years doing […]

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The Nonviolence Handbook: A Review

| February 29, 2016 | 0 Comments
The Nonviolence Handbook: A Review

Buy at Amazon or Audible Buy directly at Metta Center for Nonviolence       You know those little games people like to post as their Facebook statuses? Well, last week, this one led me to “The Nonviolence Handbook… with a chainsaw.” Apparently, things either got out of control quickly or The Nonviolence Handbook is very […]

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Thich Nhat Hanh, Secular Buddhist

| November 20, 2014 | 10 Comments
Thich Nhat Hanh, Secular Buddhist

Those of us who gathered for Social Circle last Friday evening spent a fair amount of time talking about Thich Nhat Hanh, whose recent hospitalization made headlines after rumors of his death had circulated online. The way the Internet lit up with expressions of concern and well wishes for the Vietnamese Zen monk, known to […]

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Mindful America: A Review

| November 5, 2014 | 3 Comments
Mindful America: A Review

I was by turns excited, puzzled and exasperated as I read Jeff Wilson’s Mindful America: The Mutual Transformation of Buddhist Meditation and American Culture.  This first attempt at an academic look at the rise of the mindfulness movement is a fascinating, provocative and often entertaining read,  but its cultural studies methodology can be questionable and […]

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Waking Up: A Review

| September 22, 2014 | 53 Comments
Waking Up: A Review

I still remember my excitement on encountering, in Sam Harris’ first book, The End of Faith, the suggestion that it would be possible to enjoy many of the benefits which people had traditionally sought from religion without the need to embrace religion itself.  Buddhist meditiation was one of the practices Harris mentioned as a specific example of wisdom that […]

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On Subtracting What You Don’t Like

| January 29, 2013 | 14 Comments
On Subtracting What You Don’t Like

Here’s a tweet I got after mentioning a naturalized Buddhism: Okaaaaay…. couldn’t you do the same with any religion? Subtract the parts you don’t like? It’s a question that deserves more than a 140 character response. Editing Religions  A three-character response to that tweet would be simple: yes. Given any religion, one is always free […]

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