Saturday, December 30, 2006

Roundup for Dec 30, 2006

Nine Steppingstones

Detail from a photograph in a post titled "in memorium" by Michael of One foot in front of the other.

Whoa! It's been a while, but allow me to begin again and get a head start on my New Year's resolution. Here, at long last love: more juicy goodness from the thriving integralbuddhoblogosphere. All of the following is just some of what was wonderful yesterday:

Wonderful writing and photographs in F & X Kwan’s foot before foot: the photoblog make a visit to the couple’s blogspace delightful, even as their lives seem always to be a hard slog. Yesterday, there was rain.

Baghdad Burning, a blog reporting events from Iraq’s capital, had been down for quite a while, but it is back. Ajahn Punnadhammo tells us of a recent post in that famous blog with an entry in his Bhikkhu’s Blog, reporting from the safe, quiet wooded compound of Arrow River Forest Hermitage, west of Thunder Bay.

Cliff Jones of This is This manages a TV network or somesuch in Britain and was under the razor of an Arab barber when a call came in from the vid guy at work regarding what to air of Saddam’s execution. Cliff relates his dicey conversation on a cellphone in the busy-barber’s chair.

Whiskey of whiskey river quotes Fyodor Doestoevsky’s The Idiot. It begins, “You smile at the absurdity of your dream and feel at the same time that the tissue of those absurdities contains some thought …”

Michael of One foot in front of the other remembers a blog friend who died in a recent automobile accident in his touching post "in memorium." His post includes a photograph the woman admired of his, showing a country road in Japan.

Steroids of chess: George P. Dvorsky of Sentient Developments considers the future of competitive chess. Hidden devises that supply computer access, stimulants, and “genetically modified competitors” all pose a challenge to fairly contested events. George concludes, “…as the human species changes so too must our competitive activities. The rules of sport, whether these sports require mental or physical skill, will have to bend in the face of the biotech wind.”

James in his The Buddhist Blog posts a quote from Stephen Batchelor that concludes with this summative sentence, “The survival of Buddhism today is dependent on its continuing ability to adapt.” James finds the teaching valuable in his own life in remembering not to be judgmental of the path other Buddhists take dealing creatively with each of their unique life’s challenges.

Writes Mike of Unknowing Mind, “The new year is fast approaching, and what better time than [this] to take stock of your life, and dedicate just 10% of it to true daily practice. Allow the other 90% to continue living exactly as you do now.”

Bill of Integral Options Café has been keeping us abreast of ‘best of” lists that have been coming out in recent weeks. Yesterday, he found three more: Cinematical’s best ten films of 06; Ten wildlife conservation success stories in 06; and the 500 greatest albums of all time, according to Rolling Stone’s 60s-and-70s prejudice editors.

And finally, speaking of “best of”s, the nominations for the 2007 Blogisattva Awards, honoring excellence in Buddhist blogging during calendar year 2006, will be announced right here, in Blogmandu, in the middle of next month. There will be 50% more categories and 50% more nominees than last year [2006 nominees; 2006 winners], reflecting the growth in quantity, variety and quality of Buddhist blogs, bloggers and their posts. Yowza! Blog on and read on, y’all.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Roundup for Oct 30, 2006

copyright X. Kwan, 2006

© x kwan, 2006. Detail from picture Little Miss Perky by X. Kwan, posted in "Bushed" in the blog by F & X Kwan foot before foot: the photoblog.

Ooop. Blogmandu has been neglected! But today, alas, a new entry.

Here’s what’s new and spiffy in the integral- and buddhoblogospheres:

tinythinker in peaceful turmoil writes of some of his more serious attachments, how attachments can be intellectually described and then, very helpfully, pulls us up out of any intellectual tule fog with this visualization
Until you have started really seeing [your attachments], like strings on a puppet moving you about as conditions in your life appear to change, [intellectual depictions of what attachments are are inadequate]. And, of course, it's even harder to see that, in fact, there are no strings (yes, it is a bit reminiscent of the "no spoon" line from that Zennish motion picture). When one is/is in the realization, rather than anticipating it or acknowledging [it] after the fact, there is nothing to hinder or become hindered by.
George of Sentient Developments has been posting what he calls a “Buddha Break” every few days since the 17th, in “an effort to write more about Buddhist topics and tie it into the context of [his] blog.” In his fifth and latest “break,” George writes about a meditation class conducted by his yoga instructor that had elements that are contrary to the practice he’s accustomed to, based on the vipassana tradition. Writes George
Once the meditation started we focused on the breath – a practice that I’m very familiar with. But after a few minutes of that he had us move ‘beyond’ a focus on the breath to a focus on the pure mind. This I could not understand nor accomplish. In fact, the idea of zoning-out like this is anathema to my own notions as to why we meditate and how we work to improve the practice of mindfulness. It might be my ignorance, but it seemed “unmindful” to try to attain a state of uber-relaxed ‘pure mind.’ I don’t even know what that means.

Brad Warner's forthcoming book is up at Amazon, with a release date of Apr 28, 2007. Brad writes a bit about the release in a post titled "Where Do We Go When We Die?" in his blog Hardcore Zen.

Hill Street Blues: In “California is Pathetic, Part 2” The Brad of Hardcore Zen tells us why he is getting so few to show up for zazen in his Hill Street Center. Basically, it’s because Buddhist practice “is hard work” and “most people are … lazy and pathetic.” He tells us, though, that he is happy to get what pathetic turnout he gets rather than suffer from what he calls The ‘Frampton Comes Alive’ Effect which is when “a whole bunch of people [show up] who are just there because being there is the thing to do.” I note that Brad’s sentiments here seem to be in sharp contrast to the sentiment one gathers from the title of Brad’s forthcoming book [see graphic at right]. We may have to wait until the book is out to square this circle.

Up from the gutter and into the fast lane: Nagarjuna is in a slump; his bowling scores are way down and this after learning about some of the game's finer points. He is convinced that in order to get his game squared away he must get a boost of confidence – not only at the bowling center but in his life generally. He writes in Naked Reflections,
[A]ct the way I wish to feel, and feel the way I wish to act.” In Star Trek, there is something called the “Rules of Acquisition” that act as the guiding principles of all self-respecting Ferengi in their daily conduct, aimed, as it is, at building wealth and power. I'm tempted to construct my own personal list of guiding rules or precepts with the maxim above at or near the top of that list.

Buddhism is very fortunate to have a stellar, hard-working guide at in Anthony Flanagan. For quite some time the entries Anthony posts have been in blog format so I am happy to start appropriately recognizing his work as part of the buddhoblogosphere. Anthony’s latest post is about Rahula, the Buddha’s son. It is yet another expertly written essay of Anthony’s focusing on Buddhism basics in About Buddhism. Anthony's essays that are beyond or well beyond the basics are also expertly written. Svaha!

The latest issue of Holons [for Nov 06] – news from the Integral world [but decidedly NOT Frank Vissar’s Integral World] – includes reviews by C4 and Vincent Horn. Each mentions his work in his solo blog. C4 reviews the DVD release of the film Running Scared. C4 writes in his blog, ~C4Chaos, “Even Roger Ebert agrees with me :) So if you think you can handle it, check out the movie.” Vincent reviews Alan Wallace’s new book The Attention Revolution. Says Vince in Numinous Nonsense, delighted with the publishing credit, “Suweet. … Pretty cool because I also just recorded an interview with … Wallace for [the new group podcast blog] Buddhist Geeks.”

It takes a village: Jack [aka, Jeb] – well known to longstanding B’du readers for his defunct Wondering on the Way <q.v.> blog, which was the sterling Buddhist voice during the Katrina disaster – is building up Buddhist Village which acts as a community with an ezine at its hub. Check it out, AND latch on to the village feed.

Atheism Discussion

And finally, for today, Sean of Deep Surface and Bob of Dust are mainstays in a cross-blog discussion going on regarding atheism. In “Atheists and Development,” Sean writes that he agrees with famed atheist Sam Harris that “helping the faithful to understand reason is important for the survival of our species.” Stuart Davis in his stuartdavis blog had ripped into the idea, writing in an “Open Letter to Rational Pundits,” “We had better figure out how to see depth, experience altitudes of awareness, and embrace development, or those lower stations will render us undone.”

Dust’s Bob had a serious, mad, but funny, too, and “Cranky, mean-spirited reaction to Stuart Davis’s blog,” writing to Stu that he is “flat, flat, flat-out full of shit when you parrot Wilber’s smoke and mirrors ‘solution’ to the world’s problems.”

In a later, calmer post, Bob writes, “How did I change my mind about religious faith? Or if you prefer, How did I develop to a more inclusive worldview? The answer to both questions is the same in my case: I was exposed, over time, to series of thoughtful, rational, evidence-based perspectives that eventually made utterly transparent the silliness, ignorance, and self-limiting nature of religious dogma. And until integral or developmental theorists can demonstrate a more effective approach to this problem, or any other for that matter, I will have to go with what’s worked for me.”

C4 of the blog ~C4Chaos, in a thoughtful comment to Bob’s words suggests “gather[ing] people in different religions and faith who already are at the world-centric stage of development and do the rational dialogue with them instead of attempt[ing] to dialogue among the masses.”

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Roundup for Oct 17, 2006

Here's today's roundup, y'all:

Mike of Unknowing Mind finds that when he had a “physical expression of spiritual practice” – specifically, when he was training in Aikido, a Japanese martial art -- Buddhism had a heightened effect on his life. He writes, “Aikido acts as a physical expression of the value of egolessness, compassion, and wisdom.”

As best he can, Mike Doe of Do-Doe deals with a wild mouse in his house.

George of Sentient Developments welcomes us to the Age of Weapons Containment when there are likely to be other North Koreas or groups with bio-labs to develop horribly dangerous weaponry. He writes, “Preventing the wide-spread and unchecked accessibility to apocalyptic technologies will redefine the human condition. We may have to live with a multitude of existential threats in perpetuity. This is not a good situation.” No.

C4 of ~C4Chaos will be going to the Blog Business Summit 2006 in Seattle later this month, representing both his solo-blogging self and Zaadz, the walled social blogging community and virtual-fern pick-up bar that will change the world. He asks his “dear readers” to send him questions to ask the speakers or uber-bloggers he commiserates with at the conference.

In Genius of Insanity part of an AP report is posted on the high death toll so far this month of Iraqis killed in sectarian reprisals and of US soldiers in the streets. Adds Blogger James Ure, “[I]t's time that we adults grab the wheel of this convoy on a highway to hell and change directions. We can do that by electing Democrats to the Congress this November.”

Paul, The Blue Eyed Buddhist, links to an MSNBC report, “Power crunch spotlights deregulation turmoil,” and shows us that it is yet another issue that the Republicans have bobbled. He writes, “So the next time … there’s a brown-out … thank a Republican for dorking things up.”

Nagarjuna of Thoughts Chase Thoughts takes up a conjecture by Gagdad Bob of what would happen if the states of the US were divided into separate Red and Blue Nations. Would a Blue America have ruinous taxes and an intrusive govenment? Would a Red America allow corporations to run amuck and be non-compassionate toward poor citizens? Or, are the fifty states better being all together finding a Middle Way?

Cenk Uygur blogging in the Huffington Post:

George W. Bush will live in infamy for what he has done in Iraq. 161 dead. 83 dead. 53 dead. 16 tortured. 17 decapitated. Shiite doctors dumping the bodies of Sunni patients they have murdered. Burn marks. Executions. Torture chambers. Revenge killings. Family members shot in front of their wives and children.

These are all the headlines from Iraq in just the last couple of days.

If this isn't a civil war, what in the world is? Anywhere from 50,000-650,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed in the last three and half years. Let that sink in for a second. That's a gigantic number. The human toll in Iraq has been unspeakable. And none of it had to happen. This was a war of choice. And it has been one of the worst choices ever made by a world leader.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Roundup for Oct 14, 2006

Tanimbar Islands -- Drawing by Will Buckingham. Copyright, Will Buckingham, 2006. Will of thinkBuddha has launched a new blog,, as "an outlet for more literary or straightforwardly philosophical reflections" and to cogitate on the "curious business of wrestling with words and with meanings" what with a novel he has coming out next Spring, called Cargo Fever, and one he's in the midst of writing now. Hopefully, he will also use the new blog as a place to post more of his drawings.

A quick roundup for you all.

One thing I forgot to write-up last roundup is the good, good news that chalip of Zen Under the Skin made an appearance with two posts after a blogging absence of about five weeks. In one of the posts, “Home Training,” chalip asks the question “After years of no practice or haphazard practice, how do you change? How do you develop the discipline that makes daily practice a reality?” She then addresses the questions, dealing with the circumstances in her life, doing so in a way that we may use some of her ideas for ourselves.

Natasha has put up a perfect post to introduce new readers to her blog, feminish. What I mean by that is that it is a beautiful piece of writing – with footnotes! – that explains where the feminism movement is today – its goals and obstacles – and the difficulties a woman has in being herself and dealing with the expectations of others in this our still-very-skewed and too-screwy world.

Umguy of Ideological Putty is messed up and will be in Las Vegas. If anybody wants to meet up with him there and do god-only-knows what, read his post.

It is fall in New York state. Michael of One foot in front of the other proves it with beautiful pictures taken on a clear, magical afternoon.

Bill of Integral Options Café endorses an effort by Oprah and Bono to buy Red products to help fight AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in Africa. My question: Why should anybody living a far less conspicuously consumptive life than Oprah take advice on what to buy from her show? Shouldn’t she be getting advice on what to buy and not to buy from us? Couldn’t Oprah just give the effort one year of her salary and leave us alone? James of Genius of Insanity makes the case for Buy Red, too, in his blog. Writes James who had lived in Ivory Coast for two years, “[The Africans] are a proud and beautiful people who need our help. I saw first hand the terrible effects of HIV/AIDS there.”

Good heavens! George of Sentient Developments is inventing words that are taking hold in English! They are in Wikipedia and gather lots of hits when entered as a Google search. At the end of his post, George has questions which begin with this one: “When does a word cease to be a neologism and become a bona fide word?”

That's a wrap. Good night and good blog reading!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Roundup for Oct 10, 2006

Miso, the meistro of Big Red Buddha is interviewed in the latest addition to the Buddhist ezine the worst horse. It’s a terrific interview, titled “Buddhism gets its Onion,” that is clever and funny as hell. Plus, you find out a lot about Miso, but not more than he’ll allow. A good job of interviewing is done by the even-more-mysterious-than-Miso webmeister of the worst horse. Good stuff, y’all.

Here, a tasty tidbit from the interview, instructions from Miso on how to handle a ticked-off Buddhist: “…[I]t’s helpful to remember we Buddhists are easily distracted. I try to keep a book handy with some exotic teaching by a brand-name Buddhist personality. Just toss it in the direction of a ticked-off Buddhist, and they'll quickly become engrossed in its novelty. Shiny bits of foil may have the same effect. Once the ticked-off Buddhist's attention turns from you, back away slowly. Works like a charm.”

In his blog Naked Reflections, Nagarjuna does a great job breaking down and commenting on a brilliant Glenn Greenwald article that analyses the significance of the Foley sex scandal. The scandal and cover up is a crystallizing affair that exhibits the hypocrisies, madness and power greed of the Republicans to the public, as well as exposing the Republicans for all their duplicity and doublespeak. [Btw, congratulations are past due Nagarjuna for an earlier post of his that was excerpted by John Hughes of ipsoSacto for Blog Watch and then appeared in the Sacramento Bee Sunday Forum section on 9/24, in the weekly department "Surfing USA." The original, full post, titled “That’ll Show Them for Calling Us Violent,” appeared on Sept 18 in Naked Reflections.]

A new voice in the Buddhoblog chorus y’all need to be turned on to is natasha, a “twentysomething, british, free spirit in France” who writes feminish. Her primary interest is feminism, but she is keen on zen, meditation and British politics, too. Her link-rich post yesterday was mostly on “the veil thing,” a hot feminism topic following last month’s boob thing. I love the fresh, non-sugary positivism, while still being edgy and smart, found in natasha’s writing.

Here’s how she ends her post,
And the thing is (“what is the thing, Natasha?”), the thing is - these discussions [on veils/burqas/boobs] are better than any I’ve ever had offline. Honest. Go read.
A couple of book recommendations in the last day or two sound intriguing: Deep-thinker Bill of Integral Options Café has put The Trouble With Diversity: How We Learned to Love Identity and Ignore Inequality [amazon link] on his future-reading list. The book argues that we should be worrying about economic privilege instead of social identity in our search for civil justice. The stinking rich and their playboy and lazy girl progeny float above the hoi polloi in their castles in the air, leaving the rest of us on the ground tussling over scraps. Sounds about right.

Meantime, James of Monkey Mind alerts us to a forthcoming re-issue of a book from Susan Murphy, called Upside-Down Zen: Finding the Marvelous in the Ordinary [amazon link] after seeing an advance copy. Writes James, “Quite simply, Susan Murphy gives Zen a Western face with an Australian accent. And it’s right on! Not a false note throughout. She presents an understanding of Zen that is faithful to the tradition, but which is now deeply and truly our own. Which is, of course, exactly how Zen needs to be presented. She wiggles a finger at us, winks, and gently invites us into the ancient conspiracy.”

Honest. Go read!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Roundup for Oct 8, 2006

Detail from photo in Tyson of's flickr collection of photographs taken at the Buddhist Relic Tour Exhibit.

Bill of Integral Options Café writes about the six necessary conditions that must be ripe or right for change to occur in a person’s life. Apparently, only those with means can change. Who else could afford all the therapists, teachers, leaders, study and travel that’s necessary?

Miso of Big Red Buddha writes of an Integral Buddhist named Bill “on the mend after an experiment in the horizontal integration of asymmetrical self-realization techniques goes awry.”

The Buddhist Relic Tour came to Toronto and Tyson of snapped some cool photos and otherwise enjoyed a full day at the exhibit. Am I the only one, or are there others of you hoping that from these relics we ought to one day be able to map Buddha’s DNA? I don’t know what good or harm it might do, but I’d still like to see it done.

John, the Inveterate Bystander, warns of the real threat of another Bush war in the Middle East, launched against Syria and Iran. [Considering the US military recruitment problems and depletion of supplies and risk of further inflaming the situation in Iraq and Afghanistan, I cannot see how Bush-Cheney-Rumsfeld would dare act so boldly and recklessly. If one house of congress falls to the Democrats, surely that would tie the Administration’s hands.]

Seamus, The Contemporary Taoist, alters his plan such that rather than abstaining from booze and reefers, he will imbibe moderately. On his first evening under the modified plan, he seems to have exceeded his set limits by more than a little. Is Seamus wise to seek a middle way or is he a rationalizing alcoholic?

Both Joshua and beesucker wrote about the Amish tragedy yesterday. Joshua of Mudita Journal quoted and linked to Sam Browne’s conservative Rants and Raves blog that was insightful speculating on the motivations of the shooter. beesucker of Authentic Personality wrote about the concern the Amish community has for the family of the shooter. Wrote beesucker, “Very beautiful. This sincere effort to heal is inspirational.”

Cliff Conquers the World

This is so cool. Cliff’s This is This was listed #5 in MSN UK’s recent survey of the Top Thirty Must-Read Blogs. Cliff mentions the honor in a post yesterday. Here’s the online survey on MSN_UK, btw. The MSN piece says that “more than a quarter of the UK [is] now writing an online journal,” which means that out of these 25 million bloggers OUR CLIFF, BUDDHISM’S CLIFFY, made the TOP FIVE with his blog! By now, Bill Gates prob’ly has This is This on his RSS aggregator. This is soooo cool.

MSN UK’s Top Ten Must-Read Blogs are

  1. Biffovision
  2. Stray Dog and the Chocolate Blog
  3. My Boyfriend is a Tw#t
  4. Wide Awake Wesley
  5. This is This
  6. A Cultured Left Foot
  7. 2012 Olympics Competitor
  8. Arseblog
  9. New York Addick
  10. Corridor of Uncertainty
There’s our Cliff, right in the middle of these upper tier of the upper tier. Yowza! [Hmmm. I wonder if Wide Awake Wesley might be a Buddhist.]

I also found that This is This ranks #45 on The British Bloggers Directory, which uses technorati technology, so I would guess this ranking is based on popularity measured by count of in-links or other traffic statistics. The description of This is This in the Brit Blog Directory reads thusly, "This ain't something else. Occasional daily life with outbreaks of funny and the chance of philosophy from the far east - Risk of songs."

So, This is This has it all: Critical acclaim AND popularity. If Cliff was in high school, he'd be Prom King. And to think, we're talking about a BUDDHIST blog. [But, yeah, the, a, 'humor thing' helps -- or, should I say 'humour thing' (sorry, Brits).]

Writes Cliff, modestly, "I can’t explain how much I thinks this rocks. I honestly can’t, and I’m supposed to be the guy with the good speaking, and writing them - um… with, you know, the words. Without them, I’m kind of jingling my change."

Friday, October 06, 2006

Roundup for Oct 7, 2006

This time in the Roundup, Synchronicity and a bountiful harvest.

Synchronicity, Somewhat

Detail from photo in My Zen Life. One of John's less prefered places to sit.

At 7:53am Pacific Time, yesterday, whiskey of whiskey river posted a quote that begins “There was also another reason why it was now possible to paint. …” Twenty-one minutes later, John of My Zen Life posted a picture of the bathroom in the house his family had recently moved into and put up an entry titled “day-glow lime green.” He writes, “can you believe the previous owners actually did this to the downstairs bathroom??” Of course, John may not be using paint so much as a sledge hammer.

Detail from graphic in ~C4Chaos. A frame from the evolving film "I AM."

At 2:54pm Pacific Time, C4 of ~C4Chaos's post hit the electron highway regarding an online film project called “I AM.” C4 writes, “It's a free movie. What makes this film especially cool, aside from its very meaningful message, is that it's also probably ‘the first major open-source film project in history’ wherein everyone is invited to co-create the film. I'll look forward on how this film would evolve over time.” Sixteen minutes later, Mike Doe of Doe-Do put up his post “Learning to be me!!” It his wonderful long thoughtful post, Mike writes, “Over the last few months I have been working a lot on letting go of various beliefs about myself – mostly negative but also some positive. The beliefs about me are not who I am. They are constraining things that paint a false picture.”

Blog Harvest

the worst horse
This is a great find: Bill of the IOC recommends a Buddhist pop-culture ezine, the worst horse. I checked it out – as Bill suggests – and found it chockablock with interesting stuff. I hadn’t heard of it; apparently it’s been around since February. Though parts of it are written in diary/blog fashion there is no RSS feed, unhappily – but I will be sure to bookmark it.

First off, the site recommends several wonderful blogs very familiar to frequent B’du readers: TMcG, Big Red Buddha ["Buddhism gets its Onion”], My Zen Life, The Buddhist Blog and Tyson Williams. Others blogs mentioned that are active – that B’du will be sure to pursue as a collector of beautiful buddhoblogs -- are Moonpointer, Monkey Mind, ok smile, Ottmar Liebert, and Living Tonglin.

I am especially happy to learn from the worst horse of Monkey Mind, a new blog written by James Ishmael Ford, who recently mentioned B’du reporter and something he wrote in a sermon, "Mindful Politics," he gave in front of the First Unitarian Society in Massachusetts where he is senior minister. Btw, James mentions four blogs he expecially likes in a recent post in Monkey Mind. He doesn’t provide links, so here they are: Hardcore Zen [by Brad Warner]; Philocrites [by Chris Walton, blogging as Philocrites]; Zen Blog of the Vimala Sangha [by Lew Richmond, et al]; and The Everyday Zen Foundation Blog [by Zoketsu Norman Fischer]

Mark of Zen Filter has had a spurt of activity this new month with five recommendations thus far – including the Zen Blog of the Vimala Sangha [which has an “interesting discussion on bowing”]; a post from the blog of the Savitri Era Learning Forum [“As if meditation were a debt”]; and a link to a post about Dogen and the Game of Go in the blog Numenware.

Also, Digitalzen of Digital Dharma recommends the venerated 'toon website Dharma the Cat. And B'du recommends Tao Diary, blogged by Crash. Crash is taking his spirituality in a new direction. He writes, "I have turned to Buddhism because it has a concrete method of doing things. ... The Buddha ... operationally defined what he meant by compassion, and gave a concrete plan of how to achieve a state of loving-kindness. Not only that, but there is good evidence (which will come in later posts) that the advice the Buddhists offer squares almost perfectly with modern psychological studies."

Since it is Friday, both Will of thinkBuddha and Mike of Unknowing Mind have written bodacious Scribe Jamborees. [Both blogs are part of the elite Daily Scribe network which asks its membership to have a linkfest on Fridays.] Among the many links in each blog's jamboree post, Will honors Mike's post "encouraging us to go where there is no path," and Mike honors a post of Will's on Mindfulness and the Enigma of Life.

tinythinker of peaceful turmoil informs us that there are no longer any Buddhist blogs in Beliefnet's haven of great spiritual blogs, Blog Heaven. Paper Frog got punted at the time blogger Christopher Baskind mothballed PF for other endeavors; WoodMoor Village Zendo got dropped more recently -- though Nacho's blog continues in operation at full force. Writes tiny, "I have no idea why Woodmoor would be removed, but it and/or one or two of several other blogs (Danny Fisher, Lotus in the Mud, Green Clouds, The Buddhist Blog, etc, just to name a few) would also be right at home in the list. I guess we'll see what happens (as always)."

Monday, October 02, 2006

Roundup for Oct 2, 2006

Detail from one photo in Lorianne of Hoarded Ordinaries' "Festival of the Trees"

Both Lorianne of Hoarded Ordinaries and Dave of Via Negativa worked on Lorianne’s compellation for Festival of the Trees, an arborous blog carnival. Great links, and what beautiful photographs! A tall post with grandeur and stature, like a mighty redwood! Both whiskey of whiskey river [here] and Dave of V.N. [here] quickly put up entries in their blogs to bark a revelrous herald for Lorianne’s magnificent post.

Bill of Integral Options Café tells us he was heavily into goth music and culture in his youth and retains a love and interest in much that is goth, now, as a full-fledged adult. After confessing to once having had black-purple hair, he writes, “Generally, I was fascinated with all things morbid. It seems semi-logical to me that someone who was interested in goth might eventually become a Buddhist. The goth fascination with death, decay, pain, and suffering all lends itself to the first noble truth: life is suffering.”

John, the Inveterate Bystander, asks “Where is Riverbend?” Riverbend is a young woman, in her early 20s, who started the blog Baghdad Burning in August of 2003 but hasn’t been heard from since August 5 of this year. In her post for that last day, she writes about murderous threats received by people in the city from Sadr’s followers asking them to leave, or else.

John’s inquired about what might have happened to Riverbend, but received no substantive response from worried correspondents. John ends his post with the following words and then a link to Baghdad Burning
I hope that she turns up, and if she does wonderful. I fervently hope she does. If she does not, you should know about another unwilling victim of Bush's "liberation" of Iraq.
Bill of Oaksong’s Nemeton opens the brand-new month telling us that his blogging might be light for a spell, in part because of a “Top Secret Life-Changing Decision.”

Joanna of Hummingbirds Don’t Sing is excited about Technorati, her profile there, and Mama Cass. Sadly, having just registered her blog, she has no in-links to HDS. Well, hell, this B’du post oughta fix THAT.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Roundup for Oct 1, 2006

Detail from collection of photos by Al of Pursuit of Mysteries

Detail from one of a Flckr collection of photographs by Al of In Pursuit of Mysteries, taken at a match between the Shevil Devils and Outlaws on Sept 30.

Both Al of In Pursuit of Mysteries and Sean of Deep Surface posted interesting pieces on roller derby. Al attended a match between the San Francisco Shevil Dead and the Oakland Outlaws and has pictures and made a YouTube vid. Sean went to a screening in Austin of the 1972 film Unholy Rollers [imdb] that was introduced by Quentin Tarantino at a theatre called the Alamo Draft House. The crowd was rambunctious as was the movie.

Al writes, “[R. and I] had a good time knee deep in cheap beer and kitsch.” Sean writes, “Unholy Rollers was an awesome spectacle. There were several sex scenes, many exposed breasts, and the protagonist went from bad to worse in an interesting way. If you can find it, rent it immediately.”

Both bloggers remarked on the revival of the ‘sport.’ Says Al, “The Bay Area is part of a revival of Roller Derby that is currently occurring. Seattle is another hotspot of activity.” Says Sean, “Apparently this niche sport has come back, at least in Texas. If the exploitation movie was accurate, the violence between skaters is mostly staged like professional wrestling. The sport appears to be a cross between wrestling and Nascar - with skates - and more fun to watch than either one.”

Do either Al or Sean delve into the close Buddhism connection to Roller Derby? Well, not so much, no. Perhaps they’ll do so in follow-up posts.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Roundup for Sept 30, 2006

Detail from pic from two series of photographs Michael of one foot in front of the other posted, taken in New York during a day of drizzly weather. Michael is a master of capturing interesting details. Here, the bird's not on the statue, the statue holds the bird. In other photos, a girl at a statue's base focuses our attention in an otherwise gray photo; a dog in a sweater is standing while it's master's blouse is askew; a woman with a cane has her hand covering half her face; four people in the crowd, cover a range of expression from digging the music to, possibly, moving on with a tinge of sadness.

George of Sentient Developments tells his brilliant, single-digit-aged kids that God is on the order of make believe of “sasquatch, werewolves, ghosts, UFOs and telekinesis.” Teaching religion to children borders on abuse, says George. “Parents need to open doors rather than close them. Religions not only close the doors to our rational faculties and our experiential potentials, they often act as the deadbolt that locks the door tight forever.” I don’t think that by religion George is including all Buddhist sects.

Sea-Moose [aka, Shaw-mus], The Contemporary Taoist, intrepidly diagnoses the cause of his pain, but drops a point or two in the IQ rankings. We may need to lower his grade to C-minus-Moose.

He’s Just Had His Coffee, so Tim was able to assemble a boffo set of links today on music, groups, programming & Google management.

In his post “From birth to death it is just like this,” The Brad of Hardcore Zen fame interprets a koan for us. Excellent, insightful stuff – that clever Brad – written in colorful Bradese. It does make one wonder, however, if Brad’s cleverness and colorfulness isn’t in contradiction of the message of the koan. I think not, but maybe.

Peace, like a river, ran through the buddhoblogosphere.

Tinythinker of peaceful turmoil posted on peace. His post beginning with this interesting sentiment:
There is a general sense that among the more mystically-oriented and contemplative sacred traditions that absolute pacifism is the answer - the only answer - to violence. I don't happen to agree with this. As I've written before, when it comes to the point where we are confronted with the threat of violence, we (human society) have already failed. That is, the effect was laid with the causes we allowed to be sewn which then ripened in the condition we helped to create. It's the basis of the concept of karma.
Mike Doe of Doe-do posted “Peace” regarding an individual’s development of peacefulness. He began thinking about peace after first visiting Blogmandu. Ain’t that the way? Here’s a snippet of Doe’s non-doleful words:
When you are at peace with yourself there is no need to fight the world, there is no need to seek out and create conflict – just for the sake of conflict. A peaceful person just lives their life quietly without fuss and without drama regardless of who is watching.
And now back to the stream, already in progress...

In Cliff’s This Was This, Mr. Jones goes back in time to an ordeal that can only have happened in Canada. Following is not a snippet from his post:
I once was kidnapped and left wandering the woods for two weeks and had to survive by drinking a tea brewed using from the still-piping-hot urine of a moose I killed with my own bare hands.
Famous Bill of Integral Options Café writes about the modes and forms of change in the first of a promised two-part post. Here, a small chunk of his post:
…[One variation of VERTICAL change,] break-out, is the most relevant to dealing with personal crises. Break-out occurs when one is in the midst of change, caught between what was and what is yet to become. This period can be quite prolonged and involves a great deal of frustration and anger. Beck and Cowan say, “… Such transformational change is tumultuous; it marks life passages and ‘significant emotional events.’
Paul, A Blue-Eyed Buddhist, REJECTS BUDDHISM! Well, sort of – and in theory, only. Here’s a bit from his rant:
But you know what? I’d rather you be a happy Catholic than a miserable Buddhist. Or a happy agnostic, or a happy atheist. And while I’m frequently quite arrogant (hey, I’m an air traffic controller, I save lives and separate airplanes with the power of my mind) I would like to think that I’m not quite arrogant enough to declare that the ONLY way to becoming happy, serene and enlightened in this lifetime is through Buddhism.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Roundup for Sept 28, 2006

Detail from “Seated Woman.” F. Kwan of foot before foot: the photoblog posts text and pictures each morning that are sublime. F has a great talent for finding the exact fractional second in a moment.

A short roundup. I don’t think I sucked much of the juice out of the day, but here is some of what was very interesting:

UnawakenedOne of Buddha-Inside suffers from an encounter with his/her mini-me, an emotional little beast that scurries away from the NOW. “The voice was furious, certainly dissatisfied with what had happened. Following this, strong emotions arose, my body tensed up, and I felt a pain underneath the anger that's on the surface.”

Earn a paycheck choosing the color scheme for the crawlspace faux second tier. Text from blogged ad at "Effective immediately, we are looking for a freelance graphic designer/artist. This person would be working directly with Ken and Integral Institute on history-making books and projects."

Ajahn Punnadammo of Bhikkhu’s Blog contemplates the Universe in a Hologram. His link to an article by Michael Talbot tells us that objective reality may not exist. Indeed. One scientist sees evidence from an amazing discovery made in 1982 that “at a deeper level of reality all things in the universe are infinitely interconnected.” Indra’s Net, ho!

Here, half of a quote of William James that Nacho posted in WoodMoor Village:
The intellectual life of man consists almost wholly in his substitution of a conceptual order for the perceptual order in which his experience originally comes.

Mike of Unknowing Mind reminds us “we can't wrap our intellectual brains around enlightenment— it is beyond such description.”

Somewhat similarly, Jai of Blog Blog Woof Woof tells us, “Right meditation is not escapism; it is not meant to provide hiding-places for temporary oblivion.”

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Roundup for Sept 27, 2006

Detail from “Twilight (Lamps).” An Xiao of That Was Zen This Is Tao shows us in a series of photographs that the sweetest moment of the day comes at twilight.

Whoa. Got behind on my regimen to blog daily. So here goes with a shortshot of what was elegant, classy and had buckets of dazzlement [or sticky sugar, in one case] in the IntegroBuddho- blogosphere on the day preceding the 27th …

Matt Kohai, The Eternal Kohai, tells us of his day. A busy one!

Al [of In Pursuit of Mysteries] and R are lookin’ for a house in the Oakland area. Found a classy victorian! She’s a beauty. So, Blogmandu readers, here’s your chance: Outbid Al and R for the pretty little house.

Craig of Craig’s Photography shows us that C [is] 4 Compassion as C4 of ~C4Chaos fame volunteered time and his photography talent educating and spreading the word about breast cancer.

Tyson of quotes Sogyal Rinpoche who tells us why we should keep our eyes open during meditation.

John of My Zen Life offers a photograph of a new arrival, tiny little Jack, a new Buddha, born on Sep. 21. In the comments section, Ryan of Nine Out of Zen tells us his family, too, has been blessed with a recent arrival. It’s a busy stork month.

Perhaps from knowing the Buddhoblogosphere was having a photographically interesting day, whiskey of whiskey river offers a quote that begins thusly: “Sometimes one sees the world in a way one is not aware of at other times. We're never really seeing the world, we're only seeing a moment's take on the world. This is true of images. Images are a way of seeing the world which you didn't notice before, and something you cannot make by an act of will; it's something that is suddenly revealed to you. …”

A worm inches his way around Dave’s hat [Yes! There are photos!] in Via Negativa.

One of Ken Wilber’s fawning acolytes writes a message in the ‘ Journal’ from a guy telling us who he thinks is “by far the most important person on the planet right now.” The fawning acolyte is a teacher at I-I. The guy has starting a fan-forum about all things Wilber. The guy thinks the most important person in the world is Ken Wilber. The post is too vomit inducing for me to provide B’du readers with a link. A perfect substitute for reading the post is to eat a pound of sticky icing.

Michael of One Foot in Front of the Other goes to Grant’s tomb, tells us who’s buried there, and provides photographs. No, not of skeletons, Silly.

Zataod of Zen and the Art of Dreaming lists the false Gods. It’s an interesting li—Hey! Wait a minute!

Nagarjuna of Naked Reflections writes about false Gods, too. Gagdad Bob’s false God. Should we worship the unknown? Faith before facts? Zeus, anyone?

RandomGuru of takes us to the top of Mt. Everest for a look around. Picturesque!

Monday, September 25, 2006

Roundup for Sept 26, 2006

Photo from Dave's Via Negativa. See his post, "One leaf," for a good understanding of what this depicts.

Yo, y’all. I’m going to try to blog daily for a while. There will be short posts, usually, that provide valuable links, but I won’t be reviewing the Buddhoblogosphere intently and thoroughly. Most of the links will be from the prior 24 hrs, but some stuff may go back a week if it has hidden juicy goodness.

Recent good, bad and ugly stuff from the Buddhoblogosphere …

The Clinton interview by Chris Wallace on Fox got loads of attention: C4 of ~C4Chaos writes, “Maybe Clinton overreacted, but I'm glad he did. Where is a charismatic Democratic candidate when you need one?

Matthew Dallman of The Daily Goose writes, “It bears note that, between Wallace and Clinton, the only kind of mud slung was by the latter, when he oddly called Wallace's question a ‘conservative hit job’ as well as straight-up insulted him by impugning his journalistic integrity.”

James of Genius of Insanity writes from a liberal perspective, “I've watched this interview over and over via the web today and each time I watch it I get chills. I pump my fists, yell and whistle with pride in the real great communicator with each new viewing.”
Meantime, Bill of Oaksong's Nemeton shows us that the Military Commissions Act that has been introduced in the Senate undermines the principle of checks and balances.

Amadeus of dharma::vision writes of the hypocracy and absurdity of Christians and Republicans sanctioning and accepting torture as an American tool in conducting war.

Buddha Pest [aka, Tim] of Observe the observer observes something illuminating. As his Buddha candle burns, “the more light the buddha gives the less of the buddha is present. … Bring more light, be more open to the way, and more and more of the self, the ego, identity seems to disappear.”

Bill of Intergral Options Café has been a juggernaut in 2006, making his the truly indispensable blog. He is going through a tough patch, currently. Many wish him and Kira the best as they move forward in their lives.

Bob of Dust deals with dumpsters, dry thunderstorms and gummybear-snatchers on the Adolescent Chemical Dependency Unit.

Danny Fisher of the eponymous blog writes from Asia, asking us to explore the site of Cambodia’s AIDS Project. Also, writing after a return to Bodh Gaya in India, “I wish I could communicate how good it feels to be back here again. On the one hand, I feel like a stranger in a strange land--Bodh Gaya has changed dramatically in seven years.


ebuddha of Integral Practice offers a grouchy linkfest, using an insult generator he got from IOC’s Bill. Among the many insults, E calls Ryan of Integral Awakenings a “rat-faced gathering of abrupt pig droppings.” It seems to me an unkind and exaggerated depiction of Ryan’s appearance.

Tim Bomb of He’s Just Had His Coffee offered a linklist yesterday with just two items: one on Web 2.0 design, the other on the pope’s tough words.

That's all for now, folks. Good blogging and good luck.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Roundup for Sept 16, 2006

Just when you might have thought it couldn't get any more interesting, the bloggers of Buddhist bent make it so, sometimes with a little help from the antics of our president. In the last day or so in the Buddhist blogosphere ...

Will of thinkBuddha, after hearing a lecture by Stephen Batchelor, worries that we can be losing the shine on metaphors Buddha used to communicate ‘reaching the other shore.’

Stephen Batchelor suggested that Buddhism has nothing to do with Enlightenment. … The metaphor of enlightenment is drawn from the idea of the European enlightenment, an intellectual movement that is exemplified by the work of Hume, Kant and others. It may be that this metaphor, when applied to the Buddhist context, is misleading and is far from the obvious translation of the term bodhi… Translation is always a treacherous business, but a better choice of translation for bodhi might be “awakening”.
Amadeus of Dharma Vision offers a great overview of the intra-Republican squabble over America’s right to torture. Here, the beginning of the post: “It is kind of shocking when the President of the United States goes to Congress to lobby for torture. If you haven't heard, that is what President Bush did today. In a strange and surprising turn, yesterday Republican leaders shot down the President's attempt to expand torture and wiretapping power. Today, President Bush was livid.”

James of Genius of Insanity offers some excerpts from Bush’s Rose Garden press conference, yesterday, and recent appearance on The Today Show. Bush is passionate while not making a whit of sense; saying he is proposing that which is lawful when it clearly ain’t. Comments James, “If you crane your ear enough you can hear the Constitution being shredded.”

TMCG writes in her eponymous blog, “It's not so hard to extend ourselves to others... but ego, selfishness and fear get in the way.” TMCG has decided she needs a good Buddhist life coach to “kick her in the arse” since she’s finding it hard to get motivated.” Bill of Integral Options Café coaches people and kicks some arse, when necessary, albeit in the fitness realm, but he may not be quite the right person for TMCG: Bill is 36% slacker! Who’d’a thunk it about this blogging dynamo!?

Kalsang Dorje of The-universe-is-all-in-your-head has a tantrum wrestling with a demon of the moment. His post begins, “I'm done with the horseshit of blindness.”

I LOVE MY WIFE: Scott Wichmann's acting continues to dazzle critics and all others in the audience of plays he's in. The critic for the Richmond Times-Dispatch wrote a full-throttle rave, "Firehouse stages a must-see: In I Am My Own Wife, masterful acting meets the demands of challenging story," that Scott reposts in his blog, Scott Wichmann Online.

Seeing Red

The picture on the home page of the New York Times online today is of a red elephant. [A bit of the pic appears at right. See article.] The caption under the photo reads, “The British art provocateur-prankster Banksy had a splashy opening for ‘Barely Legal,’ his show in a Los Angeles warehouse, complete with painted elephant. But the question remains: Just who is Banksy?”

A similar mystery has come to the Buddhasphere – as our Buddhist mystery man terms the Buddhoblogosphere. The mysterious Miso, with an office and staff in San Francisco’s Financial District, has set down in our midst with a burley new blog, Big Red Buddha, that comes at us with high-tech features, and a clever square logo. Is Miso a provocateur-prankster? Just who is Miso?

Writes Miso on the blog’s About page, “I’m convinced that Big Red Buddha is destined to become one of America’s most respected sources for Buddhist news, information and commentary.”

Already, a major Buddhist blogger – whom I have agreed not to name – is coming out of retirement and is set to join the already-illustrious BRB team.

This Justin: The blogger of Ordinary Extraordinary finds Banksy to be extraordinary in a review posted today. Justin concludes, "Some of [Banksy's guerrilla art] is reminiscent of Dead Kennedys and Radiohead artwork - in style and social theme. Great!" Now, if only Justin would check out BRB.

== Oop. Pretty short post today. It's not ALL of the best, but certainly SOME of the best that was going on yesterday. Read and blog on, y'all!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Roundup for Sept 12, 2006

As if y’all weren’t already aware that there was some five-year anniversary of something or other yesterday, here is a recap of much of what was said about it from the IntegroBuddhoblogosphere.

Bill of Integral Options Café posts a big chunk of MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann’s impassioned speech yesterday taking Bush to task for failing to complete construction at Ground Zero in Manhattan.

Graphic in Bhikkhu's Blog.

IOC's Bill also posts a big chunk from TMC Café relating what now-famed terrorism expert Richard Clarke has to say about the ABC miniseries The Path to 9/11. Clarke who worked for three Republican presidents and for Clinton says the program was a conspiracy to put forward misinformation. Now an ABC News consultant, he says that, starkly the opposite to what the movie depicts, in the Clinton White House “there was a common fixation with terrorism, al-Qaeda, and bin Laden. The President approved every counter-terrorism operation presented to him, including many that the CIA proved unable or unwilling to implement.”

Aussie law student Tuff Ghost writes about the fifth anniversary of 9/11 in Vomiting Confetti. “The mood seems somewhat muted, particularly in the Australian coverage, with the reframing of the attacks as an explicitly American tragedy. It's a far cry from the first days after the attacks, in which there was a very real sense that wasn't just a tragedy watched by the world, but it was happening to the world as well.”

Shokai of Water Dissolves Water posted a picture of the New York skyline seen behind Brooklyn Bridge, and this quote, “Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear; but around in awareness.” -James Thurber.

Ajahn Punnadhammo, Abbot of Arrow River Hermitage near Thunder Bay in Ontario, Canada, writes in his Bhikkhu’s Blog, “Any sense of optimism about the world scene, and we had some of that in the 'nineties, naive perhaps but palpable, is gone. We are now in a period of dark international anarchy; war, terrorism, torture, the rise of the omnipresent security state.”

Nerdine who lives in Oslo, Norway, writes in My world at the moment what she was doing five years ago. “I was still a student at that time, and remember my mom called me and told me that a plane had hit one of the twin towers in New York. I remember I didn't really believ her, but ran home and put on the TV, and watched what seemed like a badly directed film.”

Canadan K’vitch of the eponymous blog writes where she was five years ago. “I was in bed when the first plane hit. My clock alarm, set to the local talk news station, came on and announced the first hit. I was still waking up when they announced the second plane hitting. Being half asleep, I thought, ‘Another plane hit? What a coincidence!’ Then they said something about the Pentagon being hit, or maybe the Washington Monument (it was early and reports weren't totally accurate). I decided to get up.”

Zenmar, “the zennist,” writes a provocative essay in his blog The Buddhist, titled “remembering 9/11.” He writes, “It is because of America’s historical intoxication with power and conquest that the catastrophe of 9/11 happened. The so-called terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York were completely American made.”

Matthew of begins his 9/11 post
It is the fifth anniversary of September the eleventh and everyone is making lots of noise about it. It was indeed a horrific and unwarranted act, debased and obscene in every way. I do not wish to pretend that it was not that.

However since September the eleventh, 2001, a total of approximately fifty four million, seven hundred and fifty thousand children have died needlessly in the third world because of the economics of market forces that the terrorists so hated.
George of Sentient Developments quotes an OpEd piece in the UK Guardian written by Slavoj Zizek. Here’s most of George’s chunk: “The difference of the war on terror from previous 20th-century struggles, such as the cold war, is that while the enemy was once clearly identified as the actually existing communist system, the terrorist threat is spectral. It is like the characterisation of Linda Fiorentino in The Last Seduction: most people have a dark side, she had nothing else. Most regimes have a dark oppressive spectral side, the terrorist threat has nothing else."

James of Genius of Insanity posts a picture of firemen raising an American flag and writes, “May they always be remembered, their families held in our arms and supported.”

ebuddha of Integral Practice writes, “Today of course, is 5 years since 9/11. I'm not sure how other people marked this occasion. I spent some time this morning in meditation and prayer, wishing, visualizing peace for all people.”

John of My Zen Life in “gifts of sitting” posted a picture of cushions.

In an entry titled “The Obligatory Post,” Bill of Oaksong Nemeton begins with these words, “It's strange, but today's date is having little emotional effect on me. Maybe I'm an unfeeling asshole, or maybe it's because the media has beat the subject to death until I'm numb. Personally, I think it's because my memories of 9/11 are part of a period in my life that I just don't associate with the life I live now. …”

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Roundup for Sept 5, 2006

A quick roundup of great and quite recent posts in the Buddhoblogosphere and other matters of interest.

Kalsang Dorje knows he will one day die. In a post in The-universe-is-all-in-your-head he wonders how he can make things such that his life will have had meaning. He writes, “Ultimately, what I would like my life to be is a culmination of all of the good human qualities that exist.”

TMcG of the eponymous blog is interested in death, also. She writes, “For a decent $3500, you can pick up 'The Cocoon' a soy-based resin coffin that will decompose in 10-15 years and is CO2 neutral.”

Here, a central sentence in a quote Tyson of posted of words of Sogyal Rinpoche: “From a Buddhist point of view, doubt is a sign of a lack of complete understanding and a lack of spiritual education, but it is also seen as a catalyst in the maturing of faith.”

Cliff of This Is This almost says something dumb at an airport bar. Well, actually, he does say something dumb. But before being too hard on himself for being a tad slow, he takes solace in knowing that there is another there dumber than he is. One other. His post’s title is wonderfully clever, anyway: “Flight of the Humble Me.”

stumble bum of m o u n t a i n w o r d bopped in for a quick post. He quotes Anais Nin re how we see things.

Things are looking up for Chodpa of Luminous Emptiness. Her Labor Day post begins, “Is there anything more beautiful in this world of ours than a deep blue, almost clear sky, with traces of white puffy cloud?”

OK, what’s the deal guys? Recent posts by James of The Buddhist Blog and Sujatin of lotusinthemud are similar. Check it out: James’s 8/28 post ; and Sujatin’s 8/28 post . Again, James’s 9/2 post; and Sujatin’s 9/2 post. Then, too, there’s the mystery of Tom’s post in Thoughts Chase Thoughts [8/31]; and Bill’s of Integral Options Café [9/2]. GMTA?

Is anybody else getting sick to death of the Pass The Loot ministry of the formerly-cool Mel? Capitalism is fine; but grifting is something else, again.

Jack of Mind Mountain [formerly known as Jack's Mountain] has his meditation disturbed by a giant cockroach.

Hokai of hokai’s blogue begins a post that quotes Timothy Freke, “... Waking up is not a state of disembodied ‘enlightenment’. It is an ecstatic state of individual ‘enlivenment’!”

Cliff of everyday zazen writes, “making a fresh start is an illusion. i can turn over a new page but it already bears imprints from the previous page and the one before that. the present is the consequence of my past actions.”

Mark Walter of eternal awareness asks and answers this question: “If I have something to convey that is beyond words, how can I use words to convey it?”

Whoa! A wonderful rambling post by Mike Doe of Doe-Do begins with Battlestar Galactica, meanders through thoughts of memory loss, his sex life, books he’s reading, a chance of rain, and then it is all wrapped up in a bow of questions of identity. Who am I?

Chris of i am the cyclingplatypus is in the early days of an all-September photoblogging regimen. Here’s day four.

chalip of Zen Under the Skin cites two good blog finds, both submissions to Buddhist Blogs WebRing which she manages and both from India: Cockoo’s call and The Red Blood. Rama, the blogger of Cockoo’s call, has just concluded a long series with photos that show people who serve in his city of Calcutta. Amit kumar Singh writes passionately about the terrible problem of corruption and disparities of earnings in a post in The Red Blood titled “I wept twice amidst the cry of corruption.” In the rest of her post, chalip discusses her feelings regarding disparities based on class in Buddhist temples or practice centers in America.

Zataod of Zen and the Art of Dreaming writes about his latest nocturnal adventure, which includes this line, “What does one do with a homeless person one encounters in a dream. She is a product of my unconscious dreaming mind. Yet, I still want to ignore her and not acknowledge that she exists.”

Friday, September 01, 2006

Roundup for Sept 2, 2006

Another quicky roundup of recent interesting posts and developments in the Buddhoblogosphere …

Michael of One Foot in Front of the Other wrote a great post on playing public chess in New York City. It ends with this great line – a lesson taken to heart: “I picked up some great pointers Sunday, the most important being that the beauty and intricacy of a person's mind has little or nothing to do with outward appearances.”

Go East, young man: Buddhist Chaplain Danny Fisher of the self-named blog is off on a long adventure in India. Here’s a passage from his last America-written post till 2007: “Tomorrow I am off to the village of Bodh Gaya in Bihar, India--the site of the Buddha's enlightenment. I'll be there until just after the new year, working for a Buddhist Studies program in the area.” But don’t ignore his blog for the next four months, y’all: He hopes to continue to blog when he can.

Meantime, Clarity of Clarity's blog is off to Dechen Choling – which is a Shambhala Meditation Center in France. He writes, “I'm off to Rigden Abisheka tomorrow, and I'll be gone for about 12 days. This will be the largest program ever in Dechen Choling, around 230 people. It will be given by my root guru, Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche. … You could say that it's the culmination of my 12 years of practice.”

Meanwhile, Justin Whitaker is expecting to be going to Hawaii for a conference in January. He went to the prior year’s conference – last January, or thereabouts – and he liked it. Justin writes in American Buddhist Perspective, “Also it will give me two more opportunities to hone my conference/presentation skills. For the (aspiring) academic, such skills are quite necessary and like Aristotle's virtues they can only be developed by habituation.” It will also give him a great opportunity to work on his surfing skills and drinking from cocoanuts skills.

Meanwhile, again. LOTS of meanwhiles. Bill of Integral Options Café is off to Nova Scotia. Kira is going, too; they are vacationing. To prevent explosions on their jet getting there, Kira won't be allowed to bring her eyedrops. Oy, vey. [I wonder if Bill will keep up his 4am Pacific Time speedlinking-post-writing regimen when he's in N.S. We'll see.]

It’s so nice to have you back where you belong: ChaserPaul of cut to the chase had DEFINITELY, ABSOLUTELY put an end to his blog, right? Well, no. In a post titled “The Third Time is Not a Charm,” he begins by writing, “This was the 3rd time I tried to quit this addiction of blogging. I am a man who can survive 3 brain & spinal surgeries, but I can’t walk away from a poopy blog? Grrr… dammit!

Gareth of Green Clouds has been posting recently on the meaning of life and on death. In one in his series of posts he relates the Upanishad story of Nachiketa who is rejected by his father and walks off into the forest to find Yama, the Lord of Death. Yama offers Nachiketa three blessing of his choice. Read Gareth’s post to learn the blessings wise-beyond-his-years Nachiketa chooses.

Umguy of Ideological Putty is “struck by the thought that [his] mother and father are most likely both going to die without either of them having a realization of their true nature.”

ebuddha of Integral Practice thinks about his cloud of thoughts: “Thought throws up its forms - taking its cues from silent intelligence and awareness - but these forms thrown up, like waves, or chairs, bodies - are useful for living and being guided in the world. But don't identify with these thoughts, the same way you don't identify with the other forms that can be seen from the eyes. All show up, appear, and pass away.”

Nagarjuna writes in Naked Reflections about loving everyone. “When I write or talk about wanting to love everyone, I'm sure some people think I'm out of my mind. Love the guy who messes all over your blog? Love the boss who denigrates you in front of your co-workers? Love John Mark Karr? Love Osama bin Laden?”

Mumon of Notes in Samsara likes MSNBC's Keith Olbermann. “Olbermann uses one of my favorite points: these people in Washington are our employees, not our ‘leaders.’”

Scott Wichmann in "I AM MY OWN WIFE", a one-man-err-woman-err-man show

Scott Wichmann of Scott Wichmann Online is a red-hot Richmond, Va.,-based actor [and was Blogisattva Award nommed for his post last year, “Baseball and the Bardo of Becoming”]. In his next acting gig, he will be playing Charlotte Von Mahlsdorf in the Firehouse Theatre Project’s “I AM MY OWN WIFE.” This follows a run at the Boston Globe playing multiple characters in a new play, bound for New York next year, "The Secret of Madame Bonnard's Bath." [See 8/16 Boston Herald article.]

Cliff of This Is This writes a short post that lives up to it’s title. It’s free to read, so go ahead, read it: “If Money and Taste were No Option.”

Will of thinkBuddha writes a postmodern post which thinks about what he is thinking about as he writes his words. “I have been sceptical of the idea of free will for some time. A couple of years ago I became very interested in what happens when I made decisions. And again, the closer you look at this, the more puzzling it becomes.”

Tor of Tor’s Rants is registered with PayPerPost. Tor writes, “Digital photography is not just the wave of the future; frankly, it's the wave of the present. You won't make much money selling stuff on eBay without good digital photos.”

That's a wrap, readers. Write y'all, again, in a few days. Blog on!