Archive for September, 2005

Shinran Speaks: HOW He Teaches - and WHY

Friday, September 23rd, 2005

Shinran lived in a day when most people he encountered were “painfully and hopelessly ignorant”.

They were illiterate. They simply could not read.

They had little or no knowledge of the Dharma.

There was no one willing to take them in hand, and be a good teacher of the dharma for them.

They had been abandoned.

Listen with me to our Dharma Master Shinran, as he describes the WAY he teaches these people, and the REASON for it: (more…)

How to listen like Shinran - and how NOT to

Sunday, September 18th, 2005

Shinran Shonin, whose distinct karma is was to be THE Dharma Master for this singular “path of the foolish”, was all about coming to a state of deep receptivity to Amida’s call - a receptivity that opens the door to the mystery of SHINJIN.

Let’s listen deeply to his words - together: (more…)

9/11 or Nirvana?

Sunday, September 11th, 2005

It’s the fourth anniverary of the destruction of the Twin Towers - a place I used to work - a mile from where I grew up, on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. My mother was still living there - and she actually saw the second plane go in. A few short weeks ago, it was the 60th anniversary of Hiroshima. And as we watch, the destruction of New Orleans unfolds before our eyes.

All are examples of what we call “The First Noble Truth” taught by Shakyamuni Buddha. It is the truth that life is, ultimately, not satisfactory - that it is marked by suffering. (more…)

The Weight of Water

Tuesday, September 6th, 2005

We’re all grateful to see the infrastructure of the US government finally get into action on behalf of the living and the dead who have suffered so from the effects of Hurricane Katrina.

But as we look beneath the surface of that event - an event which destroyed a huge city of almost a million people - it is clear that this is not an isolated event. The people who measure risk for a living - the world’s great insurance companies - have all revised their underwriting projections in anticipation of even more overwhelming events like this to come - because of global warming.

We’ve begun to see the unfolding of them across the globe, as the ice caps melt at a rate that is unprecedented, and the sea level and temperature rises across the world. The predicted changed are dire - even apocalyptic. A consortium of enlightened capitalist leaders are beginning to speak out, along with the environmentalists.

We are dealing with THE WEIGHT OF WATER. (more…)

Refuge and Refugees

Friday, September 2nd, 2005


Living like animals