The Buddhist Review

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Winter 2013

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In This Issue



Parting Words

Amagansett Cherry

Praise to the cherry on the lawn of the library,the heave and contorted thrust of it, a master,on its own root, negating the word weeping (miles to the nearest tears),requiring instead down-fountaining, or descending from a ferocious intention. Whatever twists the trunksubsumed into pink explosiveness, and then, all summer,the green-black canopy. Prefer it unbent? I […]

By Mark Doty

Brief Teachings

Transforming Conflict

Learning how to negotiate conflict demands that we become more present, more fearless. We may need to relinquish the hopeful image of ourselves as remaining serene under all circumstances, like sitting buddhas carved from wood or stone. We have to expect our composure to be compromised as we learn about the possibilities and creative solutions […]

By Diane Musho Hamilton

Brief Teachings

The Two Sisters

There is an interesting story in the Nirvana Sutra. One day a young lady of otherworldly beauty visited a rich merchant’s house. She was so attractive that the head of the house asked her if she was a heavenly being. She said she was called Heavenly Maiden of Virtue. Whoever was visited by her obtained […]

By Toshikazu Arai

Brief Teachings

Planting the Seeds of Happiness

We spend decades of our lives wanting happiness, peace, and contentment—without sowing the causes for that aspiration. Why did we not plant the seeds of the fruition we aspire to? Buddhist logic says that if you plant a lemon seed and pray for a mango fruit, logically it won’t work. But this is what we […]

By Khandro Rinpoche

Brief Teachings

The Ultimate Bliss

Blissful is solitudefor one who’s content,     who has heard the Dhamma,     who sees.Blissful is non-afflictionwith regard for the world,     restraint for living beings.Blissful is dispassionwith regard for the world,     the overcoming of sensuality.But the subduing of the conceit “I am”—     That is truly     the ultimate bliss. Illustration by Roberto […]

By Gautama Buddha

Brief Teachings

Breaking the Sadness Habit

Suppose we are sad. What do we usually do? Frequently, although not necessarily, we get lost in sadness, we get identified with sadness. There are a number of variations. We can fall into self-pity because of sadness, or we can fall into irritation because of sadness, amplifying its power. This is our habitual reaction. In […]

By Corrado Pensa


Larung Gar Five Sciences Buddhist Academy

Larung Gar Five Sciences Buddhist Academy, also known as Serthar Institute, sits two miles above sea level in the remote hills of Larung Gar Valley on the eastern Tibetan plateau. One of the largest and most influential Tibetan Buddhist academies in the world, Larung Gar was founded in the then uninhabited area in 1980 by […]

By Tricycle

Editors View

Stories That Surprise Us

Historical study should have the effect of making what is very familiar look different or even in some ways strange. –Elaine Pagels (“Saved by History,” Tricycle, Summer 2005) We’ve grown so used to hearing stories about how Buddhism came West that we imagine we’ve got a pretty good idea how it all came about. That […]

By James Shaheen

Brief Teachings

Drunk on Dhamma

So long as the mind feels pleasure and pain, it’s drunk. Even while practicing the dhamma, it’s drunk, you know. People can get drunk eating rice—there’s no need to drink alcohol. If you eat a lot of rice, you can get drunk—drunk on rice. The same with the dhamma: Don’t get drunk on it. When […]

By Ajahn Chah


Books in Brief Winter 2013

Iconoclasts often fare badly in their lifetimes, their genius acknowledged only later on. Such was the fate of Gendun Chopel, a scholar, artist, and activist who now, six decades after his death, is a cultural hero to Tibetans both at home and in exile. Born in 1903 and trained in the Nyingma and Gelug traditions, […]

By Alex Caring-Lobel

This Buddhist Life

An Interview with Theresa Williamson

What is Catalytic Communities? The organization works to bring visibility to the positive qualities of traditionally marginalized communities in Rio de Janeiro and to support local projects there. These communities, favelas, are seen as slums; they are associated with a level of precariousness and violence. But these perceptions aren’t grounded in reality, and actually the […]

By Tricycle

Brief Teachings

We Can Only Try Our Best

Generating compassion does not mean actually freeing beings from their suffering; it is wishing that they be free. Of course, if there are things we can do to help, we should do them. Sometimes our efforts will work, sometimes not. The most skilled doctor is unable to cure every patient, and the most courageous rescue worker […]

By Kathleen McDonald


Featured Contributors Winter 2013

Richard BarnesRichard Barnes, whose photographs accompany “Non-Lying: The Fourth Zen Precept,” divides his time between commissioned work and personal projects. He has had numerous exhibitions in this country and abroad, including solo shows at the Carnegie Museum of Art, the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard University, and the Museum of Photographic Arts […]

By Tricycle

Brief Teachings

To Be the Host

The ancient Chinese used the image of the host to describe the observing, stable meditator. Many guests visit the host. Some are invited, and they tend to be kind, charming, and a pleasure to entertain. Others are not invited: they are drunk, unruly, and eat all the food. Or they stand around, staring into space. […]

By Larry Rosenberg
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