"By figuratively sticking her foot in America’s front door and keeping it wedged there long enough for an anonymous band of war-tossed Mongols to navigate around daunting racial barriers, Countess Tolstoy not only became the architect of the Mongol “invasion” of New Jersey and the country’s first ethnic Mongolian community, she also served as the midwife for the birth of Tibetan Buddhism in America." -- tells the amazing story of how a small band of Kalmyk Mongols (all WWII Wehrmacht veterans) established Tibetan Buddhism in America
, as told by David Urubshurow, who was one of them. Featuring Leo Tolstoy's youngest daughter, Cold War CIA and Ivy League intrigues, how the Dalai Lama came to America and why this was only possible under president Carter and more.
posted by MartinWisse
on Nov 8, 2013 -
Buddhism and Marxism have been called two of the most compelling arguments we have against capitalist exploitation. The Dalai Lama would agree. Once in a discussion about his meeting with Chairman Mao he spoke of his affinity for the ideals of communism, adding with a finger to his temple, "The revolution is inside, in the determination of mind." The Tricycle essay Occupy Buddhism
is very well written and perhaps interesting for those who believe another (post-capitalist) world is possible.
posted by ecourbanist
on Feb 4, 2013 -
The Dalai Lama's Buddhist Foes
contrasts "the tolerance and rationalism that the Dalai Lama represents globally and the theological hardball over mystical principles that he seems to play on his home turf." But the Shugdenpas
aren't the Dalai Lama's only Buddhist opponents. Tibetan Buddhism's only female living Buddha, the twelfth Samding Dorje Phagmo
, who chose to stay in Tibet when the Dalai Lama fled, has said
, "The sins of the Dalai Lama and his followers seriously violate the basic teachings and precepts of Buddhism and seriously damage traditional Tibetan Buddhism's normal order and good reputation." [more inside]
posted by shetterly
on Jun 11, 2009 -
At 14 months, Spanish infant Osel Hita Torres was brought by his parents to Dharamsala, where the Dalai Lama decreed him to be the reincarnation of the recently deceased Lama Yeshe. Torres became Lama Tenzin Osel Rinpoche, and spent most of his life growing up in a gilded cage in the Tibetan exile capital, venerated as a living deity and isolated from the corrupting influences of the world. But then he escaped
. [more inside]
posted by acb
on Jun 1, 2009 -
Traveling a lot this weekend? Long drive, plane or train ride? You can use that transit time to listen to the Dalai Lama talk for more than four hours with neuroscientists and Buddhist scholars on the topic of craving, suffering and choice. Part one
. Part two
. [iTunes links]
If you're stuck at home, you can watch the video
. The video link has the full list of participants.
posted by Kattullus
on Nov 21, 2007 -
Three small classes of high school students, one in Watsonville, California, one in Jos, Nigeria, and one in Dharamsala, India, are currently collaborating on "Project Happiness"
. The students are "exchanging their thoughts about
what happiness is, and how to behave in ways that promote happiness all around them," drawing on the Dalai Lama's Ethics for the New Millennium (useful 50-page pdf study guide; positive review from Christian Century magazine)
. In their work creating a curriculum for the book, the students communicate via email, a blog
, and videos (an instructor in India describes the project's focus; a "what life is like here" video from India)
. The podcast
section of the official site
currently features just one introductory video posted a few weeks ago. The project will culminate in a meeting of all three classes in March 2007 in Dharamsala. A book and a PBS documentary are planned.
posted by ibmcginty
on Dec 28, 2006 -
(Flash interface.) The Rubin Museum of Art
in New York City has launched a website that allows you to pore over and compare Tibetan Buddhist artwork from their exhibits. Use the "Decode" feature to pick paintings apart and learn about their intricate components.
See also: their ambitious
calendar of events.
posted by hermitosis
on Aug 17, 2006 -
The Buddha's daughter
"There is, religiously speaking, no reason that Renji
should attract devotion. Her father's position as an incarnation of the Buddha is not hereditary. Nevertheless, large numbers of Tibetans treat her as an object of reverence in her own right."
posted by dhruva
on Nov 12, 2005 -
The Lukhang Temple,
or "Temple of the Serpent Spirits", sits on an island behind the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet. On the top floor is a formerly secret chamber
(now open to the public) which the Dalai Lamas used to retreat to for periods of deep meditation. The walls of the chamber are covered by a series of stunning wall paintings
(Flash) which depict the esoteric practices of Tibet's Tantric tradition, a visual representation of the Tibetan Buddhist path to enlightenment. Although there has been some damage
to the temple and paintings, they escaped relatively unscathed from the Cultural Revolution. The current Dalai Lama, who was forced to leave Tibet before he was initiated into the practices depicted in the temple, describes it as one of the hidden jewels of Tibetan civilization. It is also the subject of Ian Baker's book, "The Dalai Lama's Secret Temple"
posted by homunculus
on Apr 1, 2003 -
Buddhism is a cult!
...says Representative Arlon Lindner, a member of the Minnesota Legislature. He's mad that the Dalai Lama is going to speak before that august body.
posted by norm
on May 1, 2001 -