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Gender Dysphoria and the Dharma

Gender Dysphoria and the Dharma

As a gender non-conforming person, I am prone to leaving my body, abandoning it, running away. Buddhist meditation helped me come back to a "buddha-nature drenched in flesh." ...

Right Anger and the Path to the End of Caste

Right Anger and the Path to the End of Caste

In the face of violence and brutality, we should develop "samma kodha" — Right Anger — for the sake of all beings. ...

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 ...

Why Google Protesters Were Right To Disrupt Wisdom 2.0

They say you can't be neutral on a moving train. So can you be mindful on a Google bus? [divide] Confrontation This weekend, as three Google presenters took the stage to discuss mindfulness and tech at the annual Wisdom 2.0 conference, they found themselves interrupted by a handful of protesters unfurling a large banner. EVICTION FREE SAN FRANCISCO, the canvas said. Shouting into a bullhorn, one protester ( ...

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Suffering Caused by Economic Injustice

Photo by Maia Duerr   Suffering Caused by Economic Injustice by Maia Duerr   The First Noble Truth. The way that you phrase it makes all the difference. It’s often translated as “Life is suffering,” and yet that wording may inadvertently create the conditions for apathy and disengagement. If life is suffering, why bother with anything? If life is suffering, it makes little sense to involve ourselv ...

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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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