Texts, documents and more
Free Thinking – Rana Mitter in conversation with Stephen Batchelor
In February 2016, presenter Rana Mitter had a wide-ranging discussion with Stephen Batchelor for the BBC Radio 3 flagship arts and ideas programme ‘Free Thinking’. Their conversation is reproduced here with kind permission from the BBC.
Source Texts for a Secular Buddhism
When Stephen Batchelor offers a study retreat, the documents being examined – The Pali Canon, Source Texts for a Secular Buddhism – are available as a downloadable PDF.
Journal of Global Buddhism
A number of useful articles with a secular approach have appeared in the Journal of Global Buddhism, an online academic journal.
- The emergence of secular insight practice in Australia (Winton Higgins with David Bubna-Litic) – from the 2008 edition
- A Secular Buddhism by Stephen Batchelor – from the 2012 edition
- The Coming of Secular Buddhism: a Synoptic View by Winton Higgins – from the 2012 edition
Winton Higgins’ writings
Sydney insight meditation and recollective awareness teacher Winton Higgins has written much about the growth of a secular buddhism. More of his writings will become available here over time. Items with red lettering are available now.
- A secular approach to insight meditation Oct 2015
- Adaptation, authenticity and creativity in insight meditation
- Awakening in the real world April 2016
- Bluegum Sangha in the big picture
- Buddhist sexual ethics
- The bumpy bits without quick fixes
- The Coming of Secular Buddhism: a Synoptic View (from the Journal of Global Buddhism 2012)
- The dharmic foundations of the recollective awareness approach – Sept 2013
- Disrobing the dharma
- Dukkha, tragic vision and the unconscious
- The emergence of secular insight practice in Australia (with David Bubna-Litic)
- Four mental qualities in insight meditation
- Introduction to meditation
- Karma and rebirth
- Kindness: why it’s so important, fulfilling, and hard
- Making the most of the human condition part 1 Feb 2013
- Making the most of the human condition part 2 Feb 2013
- Making the most of the human condition part 3 Feb 2013
- Making the most of the human condition part 4 Feb 2013
- Narcissism and not-self
- An Outline of Secular Buddhism Oct 2013
- Report back on the Barre, USA, secular Buddhism colloquium April 2013
- Secular Buddhism: scientistic versus interpretive March 2013
- Secularity, religion and being human
- The sources of secular Buddhism September 2013
- Sydney insight sanghas in the big picture
- The view from somewhere and the new ecumenism
- What is the dharma?
- Wisdom and compassion in a globalised world May 2013
Glenn Wallis’ Buddhist Manifesto
‘Siddhattha Gotama, the man we call the Buddha, was an extraordinarily gifted scientist of the real — [who] investigated with precision and care and understood what all of this (reality) is about … identified the proper categories for investigation (body, feelings, thoughts, the senorium) … prescribed a no-nonsense, no-frills, clutter-free methodology that would allow us to ascertain reality for ourselves … warned against the insidious and ensnaring seductiveness of ritual, devotion, and religious artifice.’
Download this document here and be prepared to debate with the author’s ideas.
Stephen Batchelor interviewed
In December 2004, Ramsey Margolis interviewed Stephen Batchelor for the INSIGHTAotearoa newsletter when Batchelor was visiting Wellington. Their discussion covered meditation, the Buddhist path, and the spiritual and the material. Read this interview here.
A Presbyterian minister and former Professor of Old Testament Studies in Brisbane and Dunedin, Lloyd Geering was Foundation Professor of Religious Studies at Victoria University of Wellington. Since his retirement in 1984 he has continued to lecture widely both in Aotearoa New Zealand and overseas. Still lecturing in his 99th year, he is Special Lecturer for the St Andrew’s Trust for the Study of Religion and Society.
Delivered in 2007, in this series of lectures entitled In Praise of the Secular, he asserts that both fundamentalists and secularists have an inadequate meaning of the word secular. Taking the reader on a whirlwind trip through religious history, Lloyd Geering traces the process of secularisation, seeing within earlier forms of Judaism and Christianity the seeds of secular thought emerging from the margins of previously dominant faith systems.
Each of the lectures can be downloaded separately. They are:
- What does ‘Secular’ mean
- The Emergence of the Secular Age
- The Value of Being Secular
- Spirituality in the Secular World
Our thanks go to Lloyd Geering, Margaret Mayman and the St Andrew’s Trust for the Study of Religion and Society for allowing these lectures to made freely available.
If you’re into reading books, you will find a useful reading list that will hopefully contribute towards your understanding of Buddhism from a secular perspective here.
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