These “Deconstructing Buddhism” talks by Batchelor at the Insight Meditation Center are pretty good. Even if you don’t agree with what he is saying, at least he presents his case clearly.

In dismissing the ideas of karma and rebirth as features of ancient Indian civilization not intrinsic to what the Buddha taught, Batchelor points out that Buddhism has reinvented itself everywhere that it’s gone (from Japan to the Himalayas) to suit the needs of the new host culture. Buddhism is not a fixed, static thing, Batchelor argues—it’s more like a living organism. The question now is, what shape will Buddhist teachings take in the West?

Get Daily Dharma in your email

Start your day with a fresh perspective

a photo of a Buddhist meditating
Explore timeless teachings through modern methods.

With Stephen Batchelor, Sharon Salzberg, Andrew Olendzki, and more

See Our Courses

Thank you for subscribing to Tricycle! As a nonprofit, to keep Buddhist teachings and practices widely available.

This article is only for Subscribers!

Subscribe now to read this article and get immediate access to everything else.

Subscribe Now

Already a subscriber? Log in.