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Entries in Zen Buddhism (25)

Tuesday
May132014

OK, Here’s the Deal

Ryushin Bodhidharma. By Gomyo.

Authentic practice is always available to us, but it doesn’t come cheap. Konrad Ryushin Marchaj reminds us what’s really at stake.

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Tuesday
May132014

Take a Good Hard Look

Bahiya Sutta. By Laura Chenowith.Sooner or later, everyone faces doubts about their progress on the path. But that’s a good thing, says Douglas Phillips, as long as we’re prepared to meet that doubt honestly. The Bahiya Sutta shows us how.

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Tuesday
May132014

Anonymous

Prayer Wheel by Nortse. Shelley and Donald Rubin Private Collection.Chinese soldiers, stir-fried scriptures, and Shrek—they’re all part of a provocative new exhibition that’s giving voice to contemporary Tibetan artists. Kay Larson reports.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

No Teacher of Zen

Illustration by Sydney Smith

From the beginning, Norman Fischer never had much use for Zen teachers—and he still doesn’t. But after years of being one himself, he has a fuller appreciation of the role a teacher plays.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

As Human As You Are

We want our teachers to practice what they preach, but when we look closely, they can seem just as flawed as the rest of us. Sumi Loundon Kim discovers for herself what’s so special—and so ordinary—about being the teacher.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

Chanting Names Once Forgotten

Women Ancestors Document</em>, approved by the Soto Zen Buddhist Association, 2010. Art by Barbara Cooper.

A quiet movement to reshape our understanding of Zen lineage and history is bringing attention to the forgotten names and voices of women in the tradition. Grace Schireson explains how the Women Ancestors Document came into being and what it means for practitioners.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

The Hidden Lamp

Female Bodhidharma</em> by Kitagawa Utamaro (1753–1806)

Three contemporary women teachers shine new light on centuries-old stories of women and awakening.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

Commentary: Enlightenment is Something We Do Together

John Tarrant, photo by Roger Jordan

There’s a romantic idea of enlightenment as a solitary and heroic act, but even if you’re off by yourself in a cave, you are still part of a culture, and it’s observable that some cultures are more friendly to discovery than others. Building a culture has been an ongoing and repeated task of Buddhism since the time of the Buddha.

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Tuesday
Feb182014

Let's Talk: Cybersanghas—Do They Work?

Dosho Port meets with some of his students online

The Internet has transformed sanghas. Buddhists who have been geographically isolated with little access to teachers and senior practitioners for guidance now have teachers and entire communities at their fingertips. Informa- tion and opinions about dharma centers, teach- ers, and sanghas are also readily available to practitioners worldwide, effectively leveling the dharma field and deflating notions of specialness.

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Tuesday
Nov122013

Commentary: I May Not Stay Here With You

By the time this article reaches you, I will have been empowered as an independent teacher in the Zen tradition through a ceremony and process called dharma transmission. While Zen has flourished in the West long enough to bear witness to the passing of pioneering teachers who have, in turn, seeded a substantial network of second- and third-generation teachers in America, my own rite of passage remains noteworthy for dubious reasons. As the second African-American woman—and only the third black person in America-ever to receive this empowerment in Soto Zen Buddhism, I am acutely aware of the conflicting viewpoints with which I hold it.

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