Our returning guest, Winton Higgins, speaks with us about some key challenges facing secular Buddhists in contemporary society.
Hi, everyone. Before we get started with today’s episode, I want to remind the listeners that we’ve started a new podcast which may also interest you. It’s called Present Moment: Mindfulness Practice and Science, and appears every other week, alternating with The Secular Buddhist. You’ll find many of the same guests you’ve enjoyed and learned from here, as well as new researchers, teachers, and practitioners. You’ll find Present Moment in the Science & Medicine section of iTunes, in Natural Sciences, or just do an iTunes Store search for Mindfulness, and look in the results in the Podcasts section. You can also visit the website, PresentMomentMindfulness.com. Thanks for checking it out, and if you like what you hear, please feel free to share it with others.
Secular Buddhism is new, and growing on a daily basis. Just this week, Practice Director for the SBA Mark Knickelbine and I have had wonderful conversations with those passionate about our particular approach to the tradition, and refreshed our understanding that there are many doors and paths to take. The secret of how this effort has grown is really no secret at all — our culture is fertile soil for secular Buddhism, and people in it have an appetite for open learning and practice, guided by what we experience in this life.
Of course, there are still challenges, and our understanding of those also grows on a daily basis. How we relate to others that are more traditional than ourselves, how we communicate skillfully about our practice, are ongoing and evolving areas for exploration, and learning.
Winton Higgins began meditating and practicing the Dharma in the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order (FWBO) in 1987. In 1994 he became an active supporter of Wat Buddha Dhamma, where he began to lead meditation retreats in 1995. Since then he has led retreats for the Wat, the Blue Gum Sangha and Sydney Insight Meditators, and taught many courses for the Buddhist Library in Sydney. He follows the western insight tradition and is particularly interested in the convergence of Dharma practice and progressive western values such as democracy, feminism and critical inquiry. Winton is a writer and social-science academic; he and his partner, Lena, have two grown-up daughters and a grandson.
So, sit back, relax, and have a nice Nilgiri Chamraj tea.
- Sidney Insight Meditators
- Winton Higgins
- Beaches Sangha
- Secular Buddhism Australia
- Skillful Meditation Project
Music for This Episode Courtesy of Rodrigo Rodriguez
The music heard in the middle of this podcast is from Rodrigo Rodriguez. You can visit his website to hear more of his music, get the full discography, and view his upcoming tour dates.