Saturday, 18 February 2017

The purpose of meditation is to make our mind calm and peaceful.



"The purpose of meditation is to make our mind calm and peaceful.

If our mind is peaceful, we will be free from worries and mental discomfort, and so we will experience true happiness; but if our mind is not peaceful, we will find it very difficult to be happy, even if we are living in the very best conditions.

If we train in meditation, our mind will gradually become more and more peaceful, and we will experience a purer and purer form of happiness. Eventually, we will be able to stay happy all the time, even in the most difficult circumstances.

Usually we find it difficult to control our mind. It seems as if our mind is like a balloon in the wind – blown here and there by external circumstances. If things go well, our mind is happy, but if they go badly, it immediately becomes unhappy. 

For example, if we get what we want, such as a new possession or a new partner, we become excited and cling to them tightly.

However, since we cannot have everything we want, and since we will inevitably be separated from the friends and possessions we currently enjoy, this mental stickiness, or attachment, serves only to cause us pain. On the other hand, if we do not get what we want, or if we lose something that we like, we become despondent or irritated..." more



What to Meditate On 

Sitting in Meditation 

Preparing for Meditation 

The Meditation Session 

A Meditation Schedule

Meditation Retreat

Kadampa Working Dad 

Kadampa Life



'Modern Buddhism' now in Public Domain


Leading Buddhist author Geshe Kelsang Gyatso has released the authoritative Modern Buddhism into the public domain as pdf files and eBook formats.

The book is downloadable in three volumes free of charge. 



 


Topics include:

Volume 1 Sutra
- Introduction
- Paths of Initial, Middling and Great scope
- Bodhichitta, Love and Compassion
- The Six Perfections
- Emptiness of Body, Mind, Ego and the Eight Extremes
- Conventional and Ultimate Truths
- the Union of the Two Truths
- Lamrim



Volume 2 Tantra

- Introduction to Tantra
- Correcting Misunderstandings
- Relation of Sutra to Tantra
- Tantra of Generation Stage
- Tantra of Completion Stage
- The Subtle Body: Channels, Drops, Winds and the Mind
- Mahamudra
- Great Bliss
- Heruka Body Mandala
- Instructions of Vajrayogini
- Yogas of Sleeping, Rising and Experiencing Nectar




Volume 3 Prayers for Daily Practice



- Liberating Prayer
- Prayers for Meditation
- The Yoga of Buddha Heruka
- Blissful Journey
- Quick Path to Great Bliss
- Liberation from Sorrow (Prayers to the very popular female Buddha Tara)
- Avalokiteshvara Sadhana

- Glossary
- Bibliography
- Study Programmes of Kadampa Buddhism
- Tharpa Offices Worldwide
- Index
- Further Reading

About the author




Thursday, 2 June 2016

Dalai Lama warns against growth of Islam in Europe

Islam WILL dominate!


























In something of a U-turn from his previous praise for all things Islamic, His Holiness the Dalai Lama has recently warned of the dangers of the growth of Islam in Europe.


From Breitbart

"...there are too many at the moment… Europe, Germany in particular, cannot become an Arab country, Germany is Germany”.
 
“There are so many that in practice it becomes difficult.”
The Dalai Lama added that “from a moral point of view too, I think that the refugees should only be admitted temporarily”.

“The goal should be that they return and help rebuild their countries.”
His comments are almost the same as those made by Europe’s anti-Islamisation PEGIDA movement, and similar to comments made by groups like France’s Front National, Germany’s Alternative Fur Deutschland, and to a lesser extent, Britain’s UK Independence Party.

Speaking to Germany’s Frankfurter Allegemier Zeitung newspaper, the Dalai Lama, who is perhaps the world’s most famous refugee himself said this weekend: “The goal should be to return and help rebuild their own countries”.

But these groups are usually lambasted as “racist” or “xenophobic” for saying so..."

".. It’s impossible for everyone to come to Europe,” he added.
“‘Taking in a few thousand refugees is wonderful but in the meantime you have to think about a long term solution too – through development and education in these Muslim countries.”

Since Islam is theologically committed to destroying Buddhism, the current rapid Islamization of Europe must inevitably lead to persecution of European Buddhists in the way that European Jews are already being targeted.



Thursday, 11 February 2016

Tricycle Talks: Buddhism and Psychedelics




In this episode of Tricycle Talks, Allan Badiner and Don Lattin discuss the complex relationship between spiritual practice and psychedelic experiences. They also examine a new wave of clinical research that uses psychedelic drugs to treat PTSD, addiction, depression, and other mental illnesses. Badiner is the editor of Zig Zag Zen: Buddhism and Psychedelics, an inquiry into the moral, ethical, and spiritual implications of blending Buddhist thought with the use of hallucinogens. Lattin is a reporter and author of the bestselling book The Harvard Psychedelic Club.   



See also  Buddhism, Shamanism and the use of hallucinogens

Sunday, 31 January 2016

Dalai Lama praises Quran and example of Prophet Mohammed.


From From  Karnataka Muslims  

The Sacred Quran is Gift of God to humanity: Dalai Lama

Mysore: “The Holy Quran is the Sacred Book which is a priceless Gift of God given to mankind for guidance and welfare of the entire humanity,” said Dalai Lama who is attending a grand global meet of Buddhists near here. Thousands of the followers of Buddhism from around the world thronged the venue for their world congregation at Buddhist Monastery in Bylakuppa, Mysore.

After the Tibetan spiritual leader and Nobel Laureate Dalai Lama delivered his “global address,” a delegation of Central Muslim Association of Karnataka (CMA), Tumkur District had a special audience with him. The delegation comprising CMA District President Mushtaq Ahmad, Altaf Hussain, Mahesh, and Naveen Kumar apprised him of the nature and importance of Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) birth day and the recent grand celebrations of “Eid-e-Meelad un Nabi” throughout the world.

Dalai Lama lauded the great services of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to the mankind and said, “the Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) entire life is the best example for the entire humanity.” Paying rich tributes to the Prophet he said, “We should follow the path shown by the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in order to establish global peace and to end terrorism and tyranny from the world. The Prophet Muhammad’s (PBUH) message of Peace, love, justice and religious tolerance will always be a leading light for the whole humanity.”

Mushtaq Ahmad presented a copy of the English translated Quran and other Islamic Books to him. Dalai Lama received it with reverence, touched with eyes, kissed it and said, “the Holy Quran is the Sacred Book given by God for the guidance of humanity.”

Also reported at Muslim Issues, News 786
Deccan TV  and Siasat


Unfortunately, His Holiness's interfaith inclusiveness is not reciprocated by the Mohammedans, (by the way, there's an excellent example of Petitio Principii in section 11 of these supremacist ramblings)

Despite kuffar religious leaders' attempts to flatter and placate the Mohammedans, interfaith dialog  between other religions and Mohammedanism is a complete waste of time and always will be.

Monday, 7 December 2015

A Buddhist Christmas Carol



 
"You are fettered,'' said Scrooge, trembling.  "Tell me why?''
 

"I wear the chain I forged in life,'' replied the Ghost. I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will I wore it. Is its pattern strange to you?''

Scrooge trembled more and more.
 

"Or would you know,'' pursued the Ghost, "the weight and length of the strong coil you bear yourself? It was full as heavy and as long as this, seven Christmas Eves ago. You have laboured on it, since. It is a ponderous chain!''

Scrooge glanced about him on the floor, in the expectation of finding himself surrounded by some fifty or sixty fathoms of iron cable: but he could see nothing.
 

"Jacob,'' he said, imploringly.  "Old Jacob Marley, tell me more. Speak comfort to me, Jacob...''

... here's a Buddhist interpretation of Charles Dickens' classic Christmas story.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Why nothing composed of matter can be inherently existent


Ten properties of inherently existent entities:
 

(1) An inherently existing entity exists in splendid isolation without the need to reference any other entity. It is completely defined by its own nature.

(2) An inherently existing entity is uncaused.

(3) It is indestructible.

(4) It is eternal.

(5) It is unchanging when viewed externally.

(6) It cannot undergo any internal changes of state.

(7) It either has no constituent parts, or if it has parts those parts are inseparable.

(8) Consequently, nothing can be ejected or removed from it.

(9) Nothing can be added to it (this would change its definition).

(10) No change in external conditions (up to and including the destruction of the entire universe) can affect it.


The fact that an inherently existent object would be indestructible rules out anything composed of physical particles being inherently existent, because every subatomic particle is in principle destructible.   Every particle of matter can be annihilated in a burst of energy when it reacts with its corresponding antiparticle, in accordance with the familiar mass–energy equivalence equation,
E = mc2 .


More at Buddhist Philosophy

Thursday, 19 November 2015

The Buddha of Absolute Freedom



by Karen Dobres  at The Huffington Post

 
"...The Buddha of Absolute Freedom doesn't live up a mountain but in Kilburn, Hackney, Essex... anywhere. He turns out to be a state of unshakeable and genuine happiness that anyone can reveal, because it's already in there somewhere waiting to get out.

The trick is to believe that and to let him out. So I'm trying every day to let her out. Not up a mountain, not even sitting cross-legged. Just trying to be me..."  read it all

Friday, 6 November 2015

Ku Klux Klan church targets Buddhists in Thailand.


Give me that old time religion

The Southern Baptist Church, notorious for its support of the Ku Klux Klan, is now attempting to convert Thai Buddhists to their brimstone-burning version of Christianity.    Why  they should be targetting these 'sons of Ham' (people of color)  isn't clear.   Maybe they're looking for a new supply of slaves  since the last lot got uppity.

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Neuroscience backs up the Buddhist belief that “the self” isn’t constant, but ever-changing

This could be YOU

From Quartz 

by Olivia Goldhill

"While you may not remember life as a toddler, you most likely believe that your selfhood then—your essential being—was intrinsically the same as it is today.

Buddhists, though, suggest that this is just an illusion—a philosophy that’s increasingly supported by scientific research.

“Buddhists argue that nothing is constant, everything changes through time, you have a constantly changing stream of consciousness,” Evan Thompson, a philosophy of mind professor at the University of British Columbia, tells Quartz. “And from a neuroscience perspective, the brain and body is constantly in flux. There’s nothing that corresponds to the sense that there’s an unchanging self.”

Neuroscience and Buddhism came to these ideas independently, but some scientific researchers have recently started to reference and draw on the Eastern religion in their work—and have come to accept theories that were first posited by Buddhist monks thousands of years ago...."  Read it all



Related posts

Sutra and Tantra in Buddhism

The webcrawler in your mind.


The Emptiness of the Mind in Kadampa Buddhism



Sunday, 1 November 2015

Blasphemy laws versus the inalienable right to cause religious offense.



Should religions and their founders be uniquely protected against criticism and ridicule, in a way that political and philosophical systems are not?  And if so, what would happen if the Nazi Party started marketing itself as a religion? Would that put Nazism and Der Fuhrer beyond criticism?

 

Alternatively, should religions have to take their chance in the free marketplace of ideas, as do secular belief systems?

Here's a thought-provoking article by philosopher Roger Scruton:


"To people like me, educated in post-war Britain, free speech has been a firm premise of the British way of life. As John Stuart Mill expressed the point:

"The peculiar evil of silencing the expression of an opinion is, that it is robbing the human race; posterity as well as the existing generation; those who dissent from the opinion, still more than those who hold it. If the opinion is right, they are deprived of the opportunity of exchanging error for truth: if wrong, they lose, what is almost as great a benefit, the clearer perception and livelier impression of truth, produced by its collision with error."

 
That famous statement is not the last word on the question, but it is the first word and was, during my youth, the received opinion of all educated people. The law, we believed, would protect the heretics, the dissidents and the doubters against any punishments devised to intimidate or silence them, for the very reason that truth and argument are sacred, and must be protected from those who seek to suppress them.

Moreover, public opinion was entirely on the side of the law, ready to shame those who assumed the right to silence their opponents, whatever the matter under discussion, and however extreme or absurd the views expressed.

All that is now changing. Under the Racial and Religious Hatred Act 2006, it is an offence to stir up hatred towards religious and racial groups. "Stirring up hatred" is an expression both loaded and undefined. Do I stir up hatred towards a religious group by criticising its beliefs in outspoken terms?..."
 

Ed Miliband promised last April that a future Labour government would make Islamophobia into an aggravated criminal offence, and meanwhile the consequences for a civil servant, a policeman or a teacher of being accused of this fault are serious in the extreme."
 

This takes us back to what John Stuart Mill had in mind. It is not falsehood that causes the greatest offence, but truth. You can endure insults and abuse when you know them to be false. But if the remarks that offend you are true, their truth becomes a dagger in the soul - you cry "lies!" at the top of your voice, and know that you must silence the one who utters them..."
 
More here


Fortunately, in contrast to some of the more intellectually-challenged religions,  Buddhism has no need of special protection from criticism, as it is firmly grounded in philosophy and science


Saturday, 17 October 2015

Buddhist Halloween


























Should Buddhists celebrate the ancient Celtic Druid festival of Halloween?     What did the Druids have in common with Buddhists?



Monday, 12 October 2015

Amidst the tens of thousands of names of monarchs, the name of Asoka shines, and shines, almost alone, a star.



 


From Lankaweb 

”Ashoka (264 to 227 B.C.), one of the great monarchs of history, whose dominions extended from Afghanistan to Madras… is the only military monarch on record who abandoned warfare after victory. 


He had invaded Kalinga (255 B.C.), a country along the east coast of Madras, perhaps with some intention of completing the conquest of the tip of the Indian peninsula. The expedition was successful, but he was disgusted by what be saw of the cruelties and horrors of war. He declared, in certain inscriptions that still exist, that he would no longer seek conquest by war, but by religion, and the rest of his life was devoted to the spreading of Buddhism throughout the world.

He seems to have ruled his vast empire in peace and with great ability. He was no mere religious fanatic. For eight and twenty years Asoka worked sanely for the real needs of men. 

Amidst the tens of thousands of names of monarchs that crowd the columns of history, their majesties and graciousnesses and serenities and royal highnesses and the like, the name of Asoka shines, and shines, almost alone, a star. From the Volga to Japan his name is still honoured. 

China, Tibet, and even India, though it has left his doctrine, preserve the tradition of his greatness. More living men cherish his memory to-day than have ever heard the names of Constantine or Charlemagne...”    Read it all

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Low karma insect spray


Dettol surface cleanser isn't marketed as an insect spray, it isn't an insecticide and it doesn't kill insects. However one of its properties (which isn't mentioned on the label) is the ability to subdue insects.

A well-aimed squirt will  stop the most energetic bluebottle in mid flight so that it drops to the ground, then wanders around slowly in a tranquillised state where it may be picked up and escorted off the premises.    Flies that aren't removed will recover in a few minutes and then start buzzing round again.

The product is low-toxicity, low allergenicity and may be used in food preparation areas and for cleaning babies' high chairs and changing mats.

So if you want to avoid the karma of killing sentient beings, and the consequences of spraying your home and family with insecticidal  toxins and allergens, give it a try. At worst you may be creating the karmic causes to one day be ejected from an establishment in an inebriated state.




Saturday, 26 September 2015

Adorable bunnies put through hell for European petfood.


Farm rabbits crammed into cages

European animal lovers, next time you see the words 'containing rabbit' on your pet's food package, spare a thought for the lives of young rabbits put through a life of suffering from babyhood to the time they are minced into a food supplement.

From the Daily Express

"...Sickening details of the cruelty have emerged from farms in Italy, Poland, the Czech Republic and Greece, which offers an insight into the miserable lives of more than 330 million rabbits..."

"...Despite being one of Britain's favourite pets, many of the rabbits are turned into food for pets, much of which is bound for the UK..."

"...The animals are confined to small wire cages, which they are born in and where they stay until slaughter 80 days later..."


"...While newborns are crushed against the wire to kill themselves or left to fall through the sharp metal bars on the floor of their cramped hutches - where they will starve to death....

"...The bodies of these dead animals are then simply left to rot, with other rabbits forced to walk across the carcasses to make their way around the cramped cage..."


May Arya Tara take all these sentient beings to her pure land, and may Dorje Shugden make the perpetrators and enablers of this evil trade become aware of the horrendous negative karma they are bringing upon themselves.





Tuesday, 1 September 2015

When Pakistan was Buddhist.

Buddha Statue from ancient Pakistan


'All too often, Pakistan is portrayed as a country of bombs, beards and burkhas. The view of it as a monolithic Muslim state is even embodied in the name of the country, 'the Islamic Republic of Pakistan'.

Yet, as Sona Datta shows, it used to be the meeting point for many different faiths from around the world and has an intriguing multicultural past - a past about which it is to some extent in denial. It also produced some extraordinary and little-known works of art which Sona, from her work as a curator at the British Museum, explores and explains...'  view it here

Friday, 21 August 2015

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Sunday, 2 August 2015

MANIPULATIVE CHRISTIAN CONVERSIONS IN SRI LANKA: SOME PERSPECTIVES


From Lankaweb

by  Senaka Weeraratna

PREFACE

Buddhism which has been the moral and spiritual force in Sri Lanka in the last 2500 years, having survived a prolonged period (nearly 450 years) of persecution and discrimination directed at its adherents under western colonial rule, now faces a serious challenge from a growing Christian evangelical movement, represented mostly by foreign funded non-governmental organisations (NOGs) based in the country. This movement has as its overall aim the creation of a numerically and politically powerful Christian community in Sri Lanka (and also in South Asia) through a rapid conversion into Christianity of large numbers of Buddhists placed mostly in depressed and poverty stricken economic circumstances. The visibility of these NGOs in increasing number in traditionally predominant Buddhist regions, and the generation of alarming reports comprising narratives from affected individuals, and observations and studies conducted by third parties, has produced public anger and calls to combat this threat to the long term survival of Buddhism in Sri Lanka.

The use of unethical means such as financial, educational, medical, and the media by the Christian evangelical groups to induce Buddhists to change their religion has been viewed as a glaring abuse of the tolerance displayed by Buddhists towards other religions, and a violation of fundamental freedoms enshrined in the National Constitution.  The aggressive conduct of foreign missionaries in their attempt to spread Christianity and other Abrahamic religions, and undermine the traditional status of Buddhism in Sri Lanka, as has happened in South Korea in the last few decades, carries with it the seed for a potential religious conflict in the future.

The purpose of this essay is to examine in brief the aim of organised conversion, the Constitutional provisions, the history of Christian Missionary work in Sri Lanka, the methods and strategies employed to convert people, the reasons that compel people to change their religion, the implications for the status of Buddhism if conversions continue to take place on a large scale, and the options available to the Government of Sri Lanka to protect and preserve Buddhism...   Read it all

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Cardinal Tauran: Catholic-Buddhist seeks to grasp "ultimate Truth"

Cardinal Tauran: Catholic-Buddhist seeks to grasp "ultimate Truth"

From Vatican Radio


The President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran - RV
23/06/2015 10:36
(Vatican Radio) The President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, said on Wednesday he sees Buddhist-Catholic dialogue as “a part of our ongoing quest to grasp the mystery of our lives and the ultimate Truth.”

He was giving the keynote address of a weeklong Catholic-Buddhist Dialogue in Rome being sponsored by the Bishops’ Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), in collaboration with the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue (PCID).
The meeting will include 46 Catholic and Buddhist interreligious and social action leaders in the United States.  The Catholic participants are from New York City, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and the Washington D.C. area (representing the USCCB, the Catholic Association of Diocesan Ecumenical and Interreligious Officers, the National Council of the United States Society of St. Vincent de Paul, and Georgetown University).   The Buddhist participants represent major Buddhist communities and organizations in those five cities.

Catholic-Buddhist interreligious dialogue in the USA, which in the past focused largely on developing mutual understanding, seeks with this new form of dialogue to build upon the traditional form by fostering interreligious collaboration to address the social problems faced by people in our communities.  Accordingly, the theme of this Catholic-Buddhist dialogue will be “Suffering, Liberation, and Fraternity.”  As part of the overall agenda, time will be given to discuss how Buddhists and Catholics in the five cities can continue to expand this fraternity upon their return and to collaborate in addressing social ills.

The Buddhist participants are leaders of communities in the five U.S. cities that represent the rich variety of Sri Lankan, Thai, Cambodian, Vietnamese, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and Tibetan Buddhism traditions.  They have been involved in interreligious relations and are committed to building fraternal collaboration with the Catholic Church.  The Catholic participants are representatives of the USCCB and the PCID, Archdiocesan Ecumenical Interreligious Officers, leaders of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul, Catholic Charities, and other Catholic social services agencies, as well as Monastic Interreligious Dialogue (MID), the Friars of the Atonement, and the Focolare Movement that is hosting the dialogue in Rome.  The program included participation in the Papal audience on Wednesday...

Keynote Address by Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue at the U.S. Buddhist-Catholic Dialogue, Rome, Italy, June 23, 2015

 

Friday, 26 June 2015

Nama, Rupa and Namarupa


Nama and Rupa are two fundamental divisions of phenomena in Buddhist philosophy.

Nama refers to the mental aspects of humans and animals, whereas rupa refers to all physical phenomena, including human and animal bodies regarded as biophysical machines. Rupa is mechanistic, whereas nama is mental. 

Although nama and rupa interact,  Buddhist philosophers reject the possibility that nama can be reduced to rupa (hence our minds are not machines)

Since Buddhism is a process philosophy, nama and rupa are regarded as being in a constant state of flux and impermanence, and are processes rather than things or substances.

The Sanskrit word nama is related to the English word 'name', and similar cognates in other Indo-European languages, thus showing the intentional and semantic aspect of the term.    Rupa means 'form' or mereology, including those physical processes which act to change forms.

All aspects of rupa may be modelled, explained and simulated by a Universal Turing Machine, since all concepts of mechanism, and physical and chemical causality, are subsumed by the Universal Turing Machine.   In contrast, the principal activities of nama - intentionality or aboutness and qualitative experience - are beyond the capabilities of a Turing Machine.
 

More

http://www.budsas.org/ebud/whatbudbeliev/73.htm

http://www.budsas.org/ebud/ebdha262.htm

http://buddhism.about.com/od/Existence/fl/Nama-rupa-Name-and-Form.htm

http://www.greatwesternvehicle.org/namarupa.htm


http://www.abhidhamma.org/Rupa 1.htm


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Namarupa

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Where do pets go when they die? Annihilation or rebirth?






Rituals to strengthen your karmic bond with your dead pets.

Some religions don't recognise the spiritual and karmic significance of the human-animal bond. Traditionally, the Abrahamic religions state that only humans have souls, whereas animals are automata (biological machines) whose minds cease at death.

Joseph Rickaby SJ, an influential Jesuit theologian, said that animals had no souls, no rights and no feelings and were no more than automata - like clocks - and if they squeaked or made noises when damaged this was equivalent to the mechanical sounds a clock would make if it fell to the floor and was similarly damaged.

In contrast, the Buddhist view is that animals' minds survive death just as humans do. All sentient beings (creatures that experience suffering and happiness) have non-material minds. Consequently, the funeral rituals to help pet animals in future lives are essentially the same as for humans.   More here



Friday, 12 June 2015

Fake atrocity stories and pictures of 'Buddhist attacks' on Muslims in Burma (Myanmar)



From Atlas Shrugs,

Muslims are waging jihad in Burma. But the Buddhists aren’t having it. Burma is 90% Buddhist. These are a peaceful people. The Muslims have brought war to Burma. Bodh Gaya, the holiest site for the Buddhists the world over, was bombed in a series of Islamic terror attacks. Read more on the jihad in Burma here: Rohingya Hoax.

Anywhere Muslims immigrate, conflict follows. And so it goes in Burma. To shore up their false narrative, Muslims are circulating fake pictures. They’ve learned well from the “Palestinians.”

Jamphel Yeshi

    “The fake pictures of the Rohingya crisis,” BBC, June 6, 2015 (thanks to The Religion of Peace):

The plight of Rohingya Muslims fleeing Myanmar was thrust into the spotlight last month after thousands of migrants were left stranded at sea – but not all the images being shared online are what they seem to be.

The Rohingyas are a distinct Muslim ethnic group mainly living in Myanmar, also known as Burma. They are not recognised as citizens of Myanmar and face persecution in the majority Buddhist country, where many live in crowded camps. Powerful and seemingly genuine pictures and videos emerged of what Rohingyas must endure in Myanmar after thousands of migrants were left adrift with low supplies of food and water last month. But BBC Trending found some of the images being shared online don’t show Rohingyas at all – but instead come from other disasters and news events.

Many of these images are graphic and disturbing. One of the photos, for instance, that shows up in search results shows Buddhist monks standing among piles of body parts. On Facebook and Twitter, the photograph has been cited as an example of Buddhist violence against Rohingyas. But the picture is not from Burma at all – it was actually taken in the aftermath of an earthquake in China in April 2010.

Another picture shows a man on fire running across the road. One group that shared the photo on Facebook suggesting the man suffered horrific abuse – that he was chopped up and burnt alive. But the real story is much different. In fact, the photo is of Jamphel Yeshi, a Tibetan activist who set himself on fire in Delhi in 2012 to protest against the Chinese president’s visit to India.

There are many disturbing pictures of children circulating as well. One shows a boy tied to a wooden pole, with the marks of beatings visible across his back. While online posts call him a Rohingya boy, he’s actually a seven-year-old Thai child who was beaten up by a relative for stealing sweets earlier this year...  Read it all

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Bangladesh government filled indigenous Buddhist regions with Muslims to outnumber and evict locals

Sujata Chakma (11 years old when raped and murdered)

"The flash crowds of Muslims from Bengal and Bangladesh that are crowding their way into Burma (Myanmar) is an artifical creation. Here is a background to these conflicts that originate in Muslim persecution of native Buddhists and Christians in Bangladesh. Myanmar is positioned neck to neck with Bangladesh and Bengal, so illegal Muslim infiltration is a constant problem. The Muslim held government and army of Bangladesh is committing genocide of Buddhists and Christians to get rid of all non-Muslim elements, with the financial backing and Sunni Salafi encouragement from the Middle East.

To make sure that the media does not get a hold of facts the Bangladeshi government issued an order that Jumma tribal people cannot speak to foreigners, or Bangladesh citizens from outside the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT), except in the presence of a soldier or government official. While the Muslim run government is filling the Jumma region with Muslims to push out the indigenous locals, the Home Ministry has imposed strict restrictions on foreigners getting permission to enter the CHT.

The hill people have also been subject to what is called “Love jihad” (sex grooming) of young children and girls, with abduction, rape and murders serving as a tool used by the Bangladesh military and illegal Muslim Bengalis to force conversion to Islam.

On 9 May 2012 an 11-year old minor indigenous [Buddhist] Jumma girl named Sujata Chakma (11 years) was raped and killed by a Muslim Bengali settler in the Ultachari mouza area of Atarakchara union in Rangamati hill district. Muslim settlers are encroaching indigenous land by the encouragement of the Bangladesh government. Sujata Chakma along with her nephew (5 year old) named Triratna Chakma was grazing cows half a kilometer from the village. According to Triranta Chakma’s statement, a bearded Muslim Bengali man came and forcibly took Sujata away towards upward of Sadachara. The villagers rushed to the spot, but by then Sujata had been raped and brutally killed, and her head was almost severed with forceful cuts by a machette or long knife.

Attacks on indigenous peoples’ villages are the most common way to evict the inhabitants from their lands. A Tripura refugee in India from Bakmara Taindong Para near Matiranga described what happened to his village in 1981 when the settlers moved into his village:

“Muslims from different parts of Bangladesh were brought in by the Bangladeshi authorities. Before that our village was populated only by Chakma, Tripura and Marma [Buddhists]. With the assistance of the government these settlers were rehabilitated in our village and they continued to give us troubles… they finger at the Jummas [locals] and the army beats them and robs them. They took all the food grain. Whenever we seek any justice from the army we don’t get it. All villagers lived under great tension due to various incidents all around. Three days after an incident when six persons had been killed, just before getting dark, many settlers came to our village, shouting ‘Allah Akbar’ (Allah is Great). When they arrived we escaped so the settlers got the opportunity to set fire“.

A Chakma refugee in Tripura told what happened to his village in 1986:

“I lost my land. Settlers came and captured my land. They burnt our houses first. They came with soldiers. This took place on 1st May 1986 at Kalanal, Panchari. My house was in a village with a temple. The whole village of 60 houses was burnt. After seeing this we ran through the jungles and eventually reached India, coming to Karbook camp.”

The following interview refers to events which took place on 21 November 1990:

“Muslim settlers wanted to take us villagers to a cluster village (concentration camp), but we refused to go there. The villagers were beaten up by the Muslim settlers of which three families managed to escape, one of which is mine. These three families came to Kheddarachara for ‘jhum’ cultivation. We stayed there for one and a half years. The day before yesterday the Muslim settlers came to the same village and rounded up the households. The settlers were accompanied by Bangladeshi soldiers. I took shelter in a nearby latrine when the villagers were rounded up. Later I tried to leave the latrine to go somewhere else. The village had been surrounded. As I was trying to escape, the Muslim settlers shot me. It was a singled barreled shot gun. The incident took place in the early morning around 6 o’clock. After getting the bullet injury I ran away into a safe place. I don’t know what happened to the other villagers. I ran away from the place for about half a mile. Then I fainted and lost consciousness. Two refugees went there to collect indigenous vegetables and brought me to the camp about 10 o’clock. I have been twice attacked to be taken to a cluster village, the second time I was shot.”

Read it all 


How Islam will destroy Buddhism

Monday, 8 June 2015

Evidence Map of Mindfulness

From HSR&D

The following bubble plot broadly summarizes mindfulness intervention systematic reviews published up to February 2014 – and shows the clinical conditions addressed in reviews (bubbles), the estimated size of the literature based on number of RCTs in the largest review (y-axis), the effectiveness trend according to reviews (x-axis), and the number of reviews (bubble size) per clinical condition. Colors: green (various mindfulness interventions), pink (MBSR), purple (MBCT), blue (MBSR+MBCT), and yellow (unique mindfulness-based intervention).




Read the full article

Sunday, 7 June 2015

The Global Decline of Buddhism



From Live Science
by Jeanna Bryner

"... Numbers for all of the world's major religions, except Buddhism, are expected to rise as the population does the same.

Islam will grow faster than any other major religion, and at a higher rate than the world population balloons, the survey found. In fact, Muslims are projected to increase by 73 percent between 2010 and 2050. If current trends hold, Christianity will also grow, albeit at a slower rate, increasing by 35 percent by 2050. That is about the same rate as the world's population overall is expected to grow by 2050.

If those numbers pan out, there will be nearly equal numbers of Muslims (2.8 billion) and Christians (2.9 billion) in the world by 2050, for the first time in history. Increases in a slew of other religions are also forecast: Hindus are projected to rise by 34 percent, from just over 1 billion in 2010 to 1.4 billion in 2050; Jews are expected to grow from just under 14 million in 2010 to 16.1 million by 2050

Also by 2050, some 450 million people in the world will be affiliated with various folk religions, such as African traditional religions, Chinese folk religions, Native American religions and Australian aboriginal religions, the survey projected. That represents an increase of 11 percent relative to 2010 numbers..."


"...These shifts in the world's religions are the result of several factors, including differences in fertility rates, the size of the youth population and people switching faiths, Pew said. (Younger populations have more people with prime childbearing years ahead.)

For instance, a good chunk of the growth in Christianity and Islam is expected to happen in sub-Saharan Africa, where birth rates are high. Fertility rates varied by religion, according to Pew, with Muslims having the highest fertility rate, of 3.1 children per woman; Christians coming in second, with 2.7 kids per woman; Hindus and Jews with average fertility rates of 2.4 and 2.3, respectively; and Buddhists having one of the lowest fertility rates, at 1.6..."

read it all

Saturday, 6 June 2015

Four Proven Ways Mindfulness Can Help You at Work



From The Fiscal Times
by Maureen Mackey

"...In addition to reducing stress, Gelles shared three other benefits many corporate leaders, executives and workers are finding from mindfulness:

Increased focus and concentration. “We regain control of our attention.  We come back to our breath over and over again even when our minds wander – and they’re always wandering. Simple attentional training can yield big benefits in the long run.”

Improved creativity, calmness and compassion. “Many leaders who embrace mindfulness cite these valuable qualities. They especially find an increase in their empathy toward a range of constituents. Bill Ford at Ford Motor Company discovered this, as has Mark Bertolini, the CEO of Aetna.” Workers find their frustrations are not as unique as they think. That new understanding can become a liberating force.

Fuller awareness of everyday tasks. “You notice your thoughts, your emotions – then you proceed,” said Gelles. “It’s about being aware of small moments. This can be even more effective than taking a big chunk of time to practice mindful meditation...”   read it all

Friday, 5 June 2015

Compassion without borders: Buddha and Jesus




From The Times Free Press
by Casey Phillips

"...The Buddha's prime message is one of boundless compassion, of treating all beings like a mother would treat her children," he says. "That ... also rang true to me because of my absorption of the message of Jesus, that the whole point of taking the Christ path is to become strong and luminous and selfless enough to love all beings.

"That was the fundamental link that was clear to me at the beginning."

Harvey is not alone in his beliefs; the similarities between the statements of Jesus and Buddha have been noted by many, including well-known Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh, who wrote the books "Living Buddha, Living Christ" and "Going Home: Jesus and Buddha as Brothers."

"When you are a truly happy Christian, you are also a Buddhist. And vice versa," Hanh wrote in "Living Buddha, Living Christ."

Other books on the links between the two include "Jesus and Buddha: The Parallel Sayings," by New Testament scholar Marcus J. Borg and "Zen Spirit, Christian Spirit: The Place of Zen in Christian Life" by Robert E. Kennedy. Some scholars also have noted the similarities between the teachings of Buddha and The Gospel of Thomas, the list of 113 sayings from Christ that were discovered in Egypt in 1945.

Harvey's own journey to embracing a universal spirituality that transcends organized religion traces its roots to the awe he felt at that initial encounter in the museum.

At age 9, he traveled from India to the United Kingdom to attend private school and "to be put through the English concentration camp of reason," but the sense of peaceful resonance he felt with eastern mysticism stayed with him.

By 21, he had attained a professorship at the University of Oxford -- the youngest person ever to achieve that position -- but he began to feel spiritually and emotionally unfulfilled. By his mid-20s, he was overcome by a deep, overwhelming sense of disillusionment with academia, with his faith and with himself..."  Read it all

Thursday, 4 June 2015

One Moment Meditation Works Synergistically with the Apple Watch to Control Media Overload





From Yahoo
by Martin Boroson

Are you overwhelmed by technology or feel like you just don’t have enough time? Martin Boroson, who first revolutionized meditation training by showing people they can do it powerfully in short bursts of time, is now bringing his technique of One-Moment Meditation® to the Apple Watch.

In creating One-Moment Meditation®, Martin Boroson realized that many people didn’t meditate, because their expectations were too high or they just didn’t have enough time to practice it regularly. Boroson discovered that it really only takes a moment. And with that innovation, he has enabled hundreds of thousands of people to get over the ‘time barrier’ and quickly refocus thoughts and calm the mind.

“The result of today’s constant digital reminders and monitoring can be a feeling that we are controlled by our devices and need to do more within the same amount of time. This has proven to be counterproductive and overwhelming to many,” says Martin Boroson. “The introduction of the Apple Watch is likely to create an even bigger change in how we experience time and appears to be making giant steps towards a more synergistic relationship between device and user. Combine that with the many benefits of momentary mediation, and time might just become yours again...” more

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Three Steps to Mindfully Shift Negative Thoughts and Feelings




from the Huffington Post
by Ronald Alexander, Ph.D.

The belief "You can't teach an old dog new tricks" is false, at least as far as brain science is concerned. It has proven that the brain is far more malleable than we ever thought. We can develop new relationship, communication, and money-management skills at any age, especially with mindfulness training.

Mindfulness allows you to set aside the instantaneous, unwholesome thoughts that limit one's ability to think of creative solutions and embrace more positive, wholesome ones, laying new neural pathways and building what I call, mindstrength. This is the ability to very quickly and easily shift out of a reactive mode and become fully present in the moment. It gives you mastery over your thoughts and feelings, opening your eyes to whether the products of your mind are useful tools for self-discovery or merely distractions.

Often, unwholesome, painful thoughts are about the past and the future, or cause and effect: You might think, "If I wasn't able to do that in the past, I won't be able to do that in the future" and "Because of what I did in the past, I can't create the future situation I'd like." Again, by applying mindfulness training, you open a doorway to a mindful-inquiry process in which you can examine these beliefs and let go of a sense of being stuck or trapped. Painful and fearful thoughts about the past and future will prevent you from focusing on the present, and accepting where you are at this moment in time.

Here are three mindful techniques from my book, Wise Mind, Open Mind to help you shift painful afflictive thoughts and feelings.

Step One: Examine Unwholesome Thoughts...  read more

Tuesday, 2 June 2015

Dealing with baggage from the past



From  The Huffington Post
by Charles Francis 

"....In the practice of mindfulness, we take a different approach to finding happiness. Instead of trying to please our senses, we seek to eliminate the sources of our unhappiness. These sources are generally unresolved issues from our past, and difficulty dealing with the present.

Many of us have things from our past that make us uncomfortable when we think about them. These can also be more serious events, such as abuse or loss of loved ones. By developing mindfulness, we begin to see all these events from a broader perspective, and this allows us to transform our views about them so that they no longer cause us pain. Mindfulness also enables us to develop greater inner strength, so that we can deal with any of life's challenges..."   full article