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A New Story of Us: Storytelling, Movement Building & the 4th Noble Truth

A New Story of Us: Storytelling, Movement Building & the 4th Noble Truth

"Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity." – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian writer ...

Systemic Youth Suffering: The Twelve-Fold Path of Social Transformation

Systemic Youth Suffering: The Twelve-Fold Path of Social Transformation

When it comes to the education of low-income students of color, mindfulness can easily mystify the structure of social oppression, shifting the analysis of school reform from the s ...

Towards Collective Liberation, or Why We Won’t Stop Talking About Racism

Towards Collective Liberation, or Why We Won’t Stop Talking About Racism

Race was a central theme at BPF’s National Gathering, with offerings like: The Invisible Majority: Will the Real Asian American Buddhist Please Stand Up? Revisiting the Middle Pass ...

BPF Goes Off The Cushion with Rev. Danny Fisher

BPF Goes Off The Cushion with Rev. Danny Fisher

Don't miss Episode #3 of Danny Fisher's new Buddhist podcast series, "Off the Cushion!" Danny asks BPF's Co-Directors Dawn Haney and Katie Loncke about issues of structural racism ...

Ouch! Systemic Suffering and the Fourth Noble Truth

Ouch! Systemic Suffering and the Fourth Noble Truth

We are constantly yearning for peace and harmony. Yet, the transformation requires us to destroy a life system that we depend upon — a system that is artificially bound together by ...

Embody Fierce Compassion: Buddhists at the People’s Climate March

Embody Fierce Compassion: Buddhists at the People’s Climate March

For many years, the two preoccupations of my life, “meditation practice” and “environmental science”, were two streams that ran parallel to each other. ...

Our Social Movements Need More Movement!

Our Social Movements Need More Movement!

A little over a week ago, I co-taught a workshop with Mushim Patricia Ikeda at the Buddhist Peace Fellowship's National Gathering entitled "Movement for Right Action: Yoga for Soci ...

Where is Your Bodhi Tree?

When Siddhartha sat under the Bodhi Tree, he was protesting the conundrum of sickness, old age and death. Having been protected his whole life from such things, they appeared as options or solvable problems, not unavoidable outcomes. As an activist sits in silence in front of the riot police, he sat down refusing to move until the answer was delivered. This cornerstone protest was a dazzling success. Siddha ...

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Awakening in Service and Action: A Study Retreat on Socially Engaged Buddhism

Awakening in Service and Action: A Study Retreat on Socially Engaged Buddhism With David Loy & Donald Rothberg Spirit Rock Meditation Center, Woodacre, CA April 17-23, 2014 More information About the Teachers Donald Rothberg: "Socially engaged Buddhism is a dharma practice that flows from the understanding of the complete yet complicated interdependence of all life. It is the practice of the bodhisattva ...

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Ouch!!! : Suffering, Systemic Oppression, and the Four Noble Truths

artwork by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel   Ouch! – A Four Part Essay Series on the Suffering of Systemic Oppression and the Four Noble Truths by Zenju Earthlyn Manuel   Introduction to the Series When I entered the path of Dharma someone asked, "Did you come to Buddhism because of your suffering? I responded, "No." He looked at me as if I were lying. Somewhere deep in my heart I felt he was saying that I ...

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No, *Let’s* Worry about Social Security: Or, On Language, Privilege, Responsibility, and Dharma Teaching

[ Note from the Editors: Enthusiastically re-posting this important piece, with permission, from the always-on-point Rev. Danny Fisher at Off The Cushion. Thank you, Rev.! ] Tricycle: The Buddhist Review recently posted on its a website a piece adapted from Andrew Holecek’s new book Preparing to Die (Shambhala Publications, 2013). It’s an otherwise serviceable teaching on practicing with the four reminders, ...

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Do We Scare Off People with our Spiritual Activism?

Kingian Nonviolence trainer Kazu Haga talks spiritual roots - both of Kingian nonviolence and his own. Together we explore when it's useful to show up as spiritual activists, and when we can take advice from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, who tailored his language differently when he was at a political march or in the pulpit. This is the third in our interview series together (see also #1 and #2). ~ Dawn [divi ...

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5 Big Problems With Compassion-Baiting

Unfortunately, we spiritual-progressive types, including but not limited to dharma heads, seem to be particularly prone to something I call compassion-baiting. General compassion-baiting sounds something like: Try having more compassion. If you did, you'd see things my way.   And in social justice situations, specifically, compassion-baiting often sounds like: You're more upset / loud / angry about soc ...

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A Late (But Essential) Dharma Talk for World AIDS Day

World AIDS Day happens on December 1st every year, and since I work in academia, I almost never have the opportunity to give a dharma talk on the subject or blog about it: it's a terribly busy time of year for a professor, what with finals and other end-of-the-semester business. I won't be making up for my own lack of attention this past year here today, but rather letting one of my students do it. Noel Alu ...

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Tara Brach: Radical Acceptance and Spiritual Activism

[divide style="2"] I was hoping to be in touch with Tara about the possibility of writing a brief blog post for Turning Wheel Media on the relationship between radical acceptance and resistance to oppression. [divide]   When [BPF Co-Director] Katie asked me to offer a blog post for Turning Wheel Media, I had just completed a two part series of talks [Part 1]; [Part 2]; about aversive judgment and how i ...

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The Great Robe: A Prison Dharma Story

After eighteen years as a practicing Buddhist behind bars, I was finally given the opportunity to take the precepts in the tradition Soto Zen ceremony known as Jukai. The ceremony was held at noon on April 1st, 2013. It was the first, although I hope not the last of its kind in Illinois Department of Corrections history. Having never been able to participate in any kind of formal ceremony before, this was e ...

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Thus Have I Seen: Hope

Seeing things as they are, mindfully, critically, and compassionately. 13. Hope Manhattan, 2013. "The storm was harsh, and was impermanent." [divide] [divide] Thus Have I Seen A contemplative photography series by Christian Zen practitioner Kyeongil Jung.   [divide style="3"] Kyeongil Jung is a Christian Zen practitioner and currently serves as the Director for the Saegil Christian Institute for Societ ...

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