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Block, Build, Be Leadership Retreat July 15–17

Block, Build, Be Leadership Retreat July 15–17

Do you get down at the intersection of social justice and Buddhism? Looking to build community with folks dedicated to practicing spiritual and political liberation? You're officia ...

Sitting For the Frisco Five

Sitting For the Frisco Five

The first time I remember sitting in front of San Francisco City Hall was at my high school prom, 12 years ago. I was barely politicized back then. The last time I sat in front of ...

Growing the Ranks of White Buddhists Against White Supremacy

Growing the Ranks of White Buddhists Against White Supremacy

For the past 2 years, I’ve been talking with white Buddhists in Oakland and across the US about how the dharma can help us dismantle racism. ...

Dharma & Direct Action Training comes to Michigan in September

Dharma & Direct Action Training comes to Michigan in September

Join BPF and the Environmentalist Group of the Zen Buddhist Temple, Ann Arbor, for a two-day September workshop to develop inspiring responses to injustice guided by spiritual wisd ...

Block, Build, and Be: Buddhism and Social Justice

Block, Build, and Be: Buddhism and Social Justice

What do you want to Block? What do you want to Build? And what do you want to Be? For a limited time, give to the BPF campaign and receive lovely perks for your donation. ...

Are Trump Protests A Collective Form of Boundary Setting?

Are Trump Protests A Collective Form of Boundary Setting?

What would it mean to set healthy boundaries against Trump's violent rhetoric? ...

5 Ways Buddhists Can Counter Trump’s Bigotry

5 Ways Buddhists Can Counter Trump’s Bigotry

As Buddhists or spiritual people committed to justice, what can we do about hateful, ultra-conservative, quasi-fascist movements like the rise of Donald Trump? ...

Capitalist Dharma and the Social Ecology of Buddhist Sanghas

As my own sangha is going through some restructuring around finances, and considering a move to a new location (which will involve more decisions around money and community resources), I continue to think a lot about how capitalism has infected Buddhist sanghas, and how we might go about creating/promoting alternative approaches. While some communities have successfully created cultures of dana, many others ...

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Fear of Change and Climate Crisis

As my beginner’s Buddhism encounters the climate crisis, I have been vexed by the paradox of change: If we are supposed to recognize the impermanent nature of all things, how do we also raise hell to keep the climate from changing? Isn’t this foolhardy attachment, illusion? Perhaps better to meditate on fearlessness for the changes that are coming, and the changes that are already all around us. But like ma ...

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Syria and the Crisis of American Imagination

In a reflective and carefully worded post that ultimately supports military action in Syria, American Zen teacher James Ford writes the following: “ Just War theories, grounded in an assertion of a right to self-defense, which, particularly thinking of that monument on Beacon Street in Boston I accept as a deep truth, are nonetheless so easily, too easily subverted by nationalist sensibilities. And even at ...

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shifting hopelessly towards hope— the keystone xl pipeline

come 2014, there will be 2,000 miles of tubing snaking in and out of communities and habitats from alberta, canada coiling over rivers, aquifers, 6 u.s. states and spilling into the refineries of the gulf of mexico. the name of this project— the keystone xl pipeline— will be the carrier of tar sands oil. the transport of this hot sticky morning breath of corporate oil, hotter, stickier and altogether more f ...

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Decolonizing Charity

I'm about halfway through the anthology The Revolution Will Not Be Funded, edited by INCITE! Women Of Color Against Violence, and deriving its cheeky-yet-serious title from Gil Scott Heron's poem.  Andrea Smith (scholar and Native activist) rocks it out in the Introduction, delineating the historical rise of foundations in the U.S. (Rockefeller, Ford, Mellon), and how their efforts to 'keep the peace' and e ...

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Kicking Up the Mud of Buddhas

I am finding myself struggling to write today. Trying to take in all the comments that have come in the wake of Monday’s post, as well as on Katie’s recent exploration of protest culture, which covers some of the same territory. It's been heartening to see so many responses, and some quite wide open, vulnerable sharings. It's also been really painful to see some of the same old narratives arise, witness att ...

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Custodians Of Breath

A Promise We hear the first Thunder rumbling off in the distance before the forever sky comes tumbling down in to our valley to fill us with laughing floods. My mother ushers us outside, in between the smell of sage and sweet earth, she tells us to stretch like bugs, bugs coming out of hibernation; so we become ch'osh (bugs), stretch our stick legs and twig arms, small brown bodies communing with even small ...

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White Buddhist Race Talk

There has been a lot of talk about race and Buddhism here over the past several months, and some of our white readers seem to be wondering why. One commenter outright called a recent post “racist.” When it was pointed out during that the conversation was dominated by white men throwing around intellectual concepts created by other white men during this post, all sorts of hell broke loose, including one of t ...

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price check: the cost of profit

upgrader at fort mcmurray, alberta, canada. clouds muted grey. they thickly curving into cumulus coughing out of the mouths of upgraders. they the forgotten particles of tar sands oil the food of our air. they the breath of hopelessness who were never meant to be exhaled. each steady stream of carbon dioxide released from upgraders— emissions three times greater than conventional oil— form into the season o ...

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5 Buddhist No-No’s At Political Protests

I take refuge in the Buddha, the dharma, and the sangha.  But sometimes, I admit, I feel a little ashamed to be Buddhist.  Some of those times involve mass political actions where Buddhists are present, visibly involved. (The above photo, despite Buddhist-seeming "WAKE UP" signs, is not actually Buddhist, but a BlackberryLtd-funded "protest" outside an Apple store in Australia. Again, not Buddhist, but an a ...

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