Ramsey Margolis speaks with us today about building Secular Buddhism community in New Zealand.
We’ve seen a surge recently in the creation and development of secular Buddhism sites across the world, serving our diverse public of contemporary practitioners with a wonderful variety of online resources. There are many approaches to a secular practice, from having an interest in more naturalistic interpretations of early Buddhist texts, to seeing how science is contributing to our understanding of how our minds work. They’re all correct, and not mutually exclusive, which allows secular Buddhism to represent a very large and diverse bunch of people with common, and often complementary, ways of being secular.
What we’re seeing now is a transition from the historically slow spread of Buddhism through physical geographic dispersal, to more immediate availability and consumption of ideas through the virtual and geographic independent tools of social networking. Online groups are easy to set up, maintain, and join. More interestingly, though, is that we’re seeing these tools bring it back home, as they foster the development of face to face practice.
Ramsey Margolis is Executive Director of the New Zealand Cooperatives Association. He started a sitting group in 1999 which developed into Wellington Insight Meditation Community, and put out a newsletter for the group that is now INSIGHTAotearoa. A secular Buddhist practitioner since the late 1990s, he claims two passions in life (apart from his lovely wife): good food and the printed word. Ramsey’s intention is to help create a culture of generosity.
So, sit back, relax, and have New Zealand’s own Kawakawa tea.
- Secular Buddhism New Zealand
- YouTube Channel
- Aotearoa Buddhist Education Trust
- INSIGHTAotearoa Newsletter
- Article “No robes, no ritual, no religion”
- St. Andrew’s Trust for the Study of Religion and Society
Music for This Episode Courtesy of Rodrigo Rodriguez
The music heard in the middle of the podcast is from Rodrigo Rodriguez. The track used in this episode is “Chaniwa” from his CD, Shakuhachi Meditations.