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Shut It Down: Reclaiming the Radical Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Shut It Down: Reclaiming the Radical Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

The real Martin Luther King Jr. was angry about injustice, radical in his politics and militant in his tactics. Kazu Haga, dharma practitioner and Kingian nonviolence teacher, expl ...

Buddha + Black Lives Matter: A Racial Justice Reflection Toolkit

Buddha + Black Lives Matter: A Racial Justice Reflection Toolkit

Tired of pseudo-spiritual derails from #BlackLivesMatter to #AllLivesMatter? Want concrete ideas for sparking racial justice conversation in your sangha? Want the best recent Buddh ...

Social Justice and the 4 Noble Truths: 2014 Roundup

Social Justice and the 4 Noble Truths: 2014 Roundup

The System Stinks 2014: Social Justice and the Four Noble Truths Contributors (clockwise from top left): Rev. Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, Mushim Ikeda, Hozan Alan Senauke, Funie Hsu, Fa ...

Buddhist Blockade Against Police Militarization [VIDEO]

Buddhist Blockade Against Police Militarization [VIDEO]

Buddhist Peace Fellowship used the peacefulness of our sitting meditation posture to interrupt the flow of foot traffic at the downtown Oakland Marriott Hotel, which was hosting Ur ...

Joanna Macy & Sulak Sivaraksa: In Conversation at BPF’s National Gathering

Joanna Macy & Sulak Sivaraksa: In Conversation at BPF’s National Gathering

BPF's National Gathering was one of the jewels of 2014, an unprecedented convening of Buddhist activists from across the US. In our Keynote Event, BPF elders Joanna Macy and Ajahn ...

Which Side Are You On?

Which Side Are You On?

As terrible as the Michael Brown and Eric Garner grand jury decisions have been, they are serving the purpose of waking up a lot of people who have been oblivious to or in denial o ...

Being Mindful of Race, Some Resources From Ruth King

Being Mindful of Race, Some Resources From Ruth King

Want to know how you can be more mindful around race and racism? Here's a helpful list of resources from dharma teacher Ruth King. ...

The Influence of Orientalism on US Buddhism

“The mercy of the West has been social revolution; the mercy of the East has been individual insight into the basic self/void.” —Gary Snyder, 1961 In contemplating Gary Snyder’s essay “Buddhist Anarchism” for my previous post on Turning Wheel Media, I came across the above phrase, which stuck out to me like a sore thumb. As an Asian American cultural critic and Buddhist practitioner, I have a finely tuned r ...

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What’s Wrong With Sex? A Buddhist Perspective

Scholar and Zen teacher David Loy looks at historical clues from the Buddha's time to ask: what's up with all this sex-negativity? As Buddhism infiltrates the West, one of the important and interesting points of contention is sexuality. Buddhism in Asia has been largely a cultural force for celibacy (among monastics) and sexual restraint, so how is Western Buddhism adapting to the sexual revolution? Today ma ...

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Revisiting Buddhist Anarchism

I’ve been revisiting Buddhist anarchism lately, the strain of socially engaged Buddhism that some foundational Buddhist Peace Fellowship movers and shakers were associated with in some form. Like any religion, Buddhism's tenets and teachings can be interpreted in many ways, including in the anti-state and anti-capitalist direction. In other posts I have indicated that some interpretations of Buddhism have l ...

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Call For Submissions: Decolonizing Our Sanghas

In the words of Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi, "Buddhism, with its non-theistic framework, grounds its ethics not on the notion of obedience, but on that of harmony." On the individual level, the teetotaling Fifth Precept of Buddhism, a training to abstain from taking intoxicants, is meant not in a moralizing way, but as a practice to help us avoid unnecessary disturbances and disharmony of the mind. “Intoxicants are ...

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The No-Self of Identity Politics

It's a kind of Buddhist-feminist koan: if the personal is political, and the personal (self) is also illusory, are politics illusory, too? Addressing a recent conference of engaged Buddhists and liberation theologians, professor of theology Dr. Melanie Harris candidly recalled how her encounters with Buddhadharma initially challenged her womanist framework — Black feminism that centers race, class, and gend ...

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Welcome to Sex, Gender, Power Month on TWM

It sounds simple enough: I undertake the training to abstain from sexual misconduct.  We might think we know what the Third Precept on sexual misconduct looks like on an interpersonal level.  But how do we see systemic forms of sexist power and gender oppression affecting our societies on a broad scale? We are excited to take this month, as part of our year-long Buddhist social justice curriculum, The Syste ...

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Ananda Come Home…

I have always been fond of Ananda. Probably fonder of him than I am of the Buddha. I think of the two of them as a kind of Frodo Baggins/ Samwise Gangee buddy team. Frodo may have been the ring bearer, with all of the fame and gravitas that comes with the title, but he couldn’t have done any of it without his trusty Sam. Likewise the Buddha. Gotama may have been the millionth incarnation of greatness but wi ...

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Preview: BPF Interviews the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (VIDEO)

(Full-length video coming soon.) We were honored to receive a recent visit from the Secretariat of the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB), Mr. Somboon Chungprempree.  INEB is a powerhouse umbrella group based in Asia, helping to organize socially engaged Buddhists around human rights, alternative education, women and gender struggles, Buddhist youth empowerment, inter-faith dialogue, environm ...

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The Rootstrikers and Job One: A Buddhist Take On Getting Money Out of Politics

Rootstrikers (rootstrikers.org) recently held a conference in San Francisco that was webcast to a national audience. It was an incredibly well designed event dealing with the corrupting influence of money in politics. What came out most clearly at the conference was that getting money out of politics is Job One (my term) for anyone interested in social or environmental justice. To call it Job One means that ...

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Labor is Entitled to All it Produces

by Joshua Stephens I cut my teeth in as an activist, largely, among anarchists; a milieu in which it's taken as granted that labor is entitled to all it produces. Ironically, it was similarly assumed that all movement labor was volunteer. In other words -- labor had no value, and was thus entitled to nothing. This was true for significant contributions of time, and contributions of significant skill, alike. ...

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