Heidegger for dharma wallahs

Well, you asked for it: a commissioned talk on that notoriously impenetrable philosopher, Martin Heidegger, whom I’ve mentioned on various occasions as someone who can help us express something that’s foundational to the dharma, but rarely articulated.

continue reading »
Posted in Dharma study, Talks | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A secular approach to insight meditation

This evening’s topic brings together a relatively recent current in the dharma world – secular dharma, aka ‘secular Buddhism’ – with the much older practice of insight meditation. Let’s first up get clear what each of these terms means before exploring their relationship.

continue reading »
Posted in Dharma study, Education, Meditation, Talks | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

The everyday sublime

Meditation originates and culminates in the everyday sublime. I have little interest in achieving states of sustained concentration in which the sensory richness of experience is replaced by pure introspective rapture.

continue reading »
Posted in books, Dharma study, Education, Writing | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Talks from a recent retreat

Helping you to put the notion of a secular Buddhism into practice, here are some talks given at a secular Buddhist meditation retreat led by Martine and Stephen Batchelor at Gaia House, Devon between 18 and 24 July 2015.

continue reading »
Posted in Dharma study, Retreats, Talks | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Deconstructing Buddhism

A conversation between David Loy and Bernat Font – David Loy was born into a US Navy family and as a child travelled far and wide with his family. He ‘dropped out’ and in Hawaii started to practice zen Buddhism. His first teacher was Robert Aitken and later, he practiced with Yamada Roshi. From philosophy to zen is not such a big jump, reading D.T. Suzuki or Alan Watts, but the difficult thing he found was to practice, to sit.

continue reading »
Posted in Interview | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Filling in the gaps between religion and philosophy – is this what a secular approach to Buddhism does?

Do you think there is a discussion to be had about how a secular approach to Buddhism fits into the space between religion and philosophy? Human ‘beliefs’ about the nature of consciousness and of free will are very diverse. What importance do you think this diversity makes to our ability to build a strong sense of a community bound by ethics rather than faith?

continue reading »
Posted in Community, Education, Meditation | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Learning Pali online

The University of South Wales is about to offer a module in Pali language as part of their MA in Buddhist Studies, but open to all.

continue reading »
Posted in Dharma study | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

‘Classical’ vs ‘Secular’ Buddhism – Bhikkhu Bodhi faces a great divide

‘The contrast between Classical Buddhism and Secular Buddhism stems primarily from different ways of understanding the human condition,’ writes Pali translator Bhikkhu Bodhi in this article from the U.S. magazine Inquiring Mind.

continue reading »
Posted in Writing | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Bodhi Institute to launch in 2016

A groundbreaking new educational centre which will be offering residential courses and study programmes across Europe, Bodhi Institute will integrate early Buddhist theory with practice, with a view to understanding and applying these teachings in a contemporary context.

continue reading »
Posted in Education, Retreats | Tagged | Leave a comment

The Dharma Bum | Atheist Alcoholic Freethinker Activist Buddhist Monk

Once upon a time, over a hundred years ago, there was a little boy born in the county of Dublin. An alcoholic, homeless tramp, he made his way as a beachcomber all the way from Japan to Burma where he was taken in by local Buddhist monks, he dried out, shaved his head and became a monk, making him the first ever white man in the world to do so.

continue reading »
Posted in Podcast, Writing | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment