Saturday, February 27, 2010

America is NOT a Police State

Uh, okay, so maybe America is a police state. If it was good enough for Germany, and it's good enough for China, go consume. And don't forget your vaccination.

BERKELEY, California (Feb. 26, 2010) - Overnight, an impromptu "riot" to protest budget cuts and tuition increases at the University of California at Berkeley snowballed to include more than 200 people and resulted in flaming dumpsters, broken windows, and [God forbid!] dancing in the streets. The school newspaper (The Daily Californian) reports that the riot emerged from a campus dance party and metastasized into an all-out fiery clash between students and police. More>>

Friday, February 26, 2010

Wisdom Network News II

Ashley Wells, Assistant Editor, Wisdom Quarterly

Walking in the footsteps of the Buddha in Bihar, India
“It's no coincidence that we at the WTO endorse this conclave in the very birthplace of Buddhism. In our stressful world, the Buddha's teaching of the...

Goldie Hawn wants to teach Buddhism to British kids
Goldie Hawn is in talks to set up a Buddhist school in the United Kingdom. The actress' Hawn Foundation already teaches kids Buddhist techniques in schools... (SF Chronicle)

Obama-Dalai Lama meeting pleases critics (Oregon Faith Report)
resident Obama finally met with Tibet's Dalai Lama in a face off that seemed more snub to China than pledge to help human rights in Taiwan, Uighur country, or Tibet -- all restive portions of the Chinese empire. But the perceived insult seems to have pleased many critics.

Dalai Lama doesn't fault Obama for low-profile reception...
The Dalai Lama said he did not know who Woods was, but said self-discipline is among Buddhism's highest values. When it comes to adultery, he said... (Canadian Press)

Exhibition explores Buddhist, Shinto religious beliefs
“The Way of the Gods: Shinto Shrines and Their Art” explores interaction between Buddhist and Shinto beliefs and imagery.

The Buddha at Bamiyan was destroyed by the Taliban. It was the largest in the world because Afghanistan was once an important center of learning on the western frontiers of greater-India (Bharat). Which is to scale and which has been photographed to seem smaller? (See men at bottom for size).

Worshipping money, China won't gain trust
Long under the influence of Buddhism, the most secular among the dominant religions, local culture lacks power in restraining the desire for money.
Australian elephant blessed by Buddhist monks
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) -- Mali the baby elephant played with a red rubber ball as three Buddhist monks splashed her face with water Thursday in blessing ceremony for the Melbourne Zoo's newest star. The baby was born six weeks ago to mother Dokkoon after a naming ceremony performed by Buddhist monks in Melbourne, Australia. Mali is Thai for jasmine and was chosen out of five possibilities derived from her Thai lineage in a public vote held by the zoo.

Full coverage: Tiger loses another sponsor

Another big sponsor drops Tiger Woods
The world's greatest golfer loses another sponsorship as the fallout from his infidelity scandal continues. "We wish him all the best" - Nike "happy" with absence - "Candid" pics were staged
Tiger Woods' sponsors

The Lady: Burma's Democracy Leader

US condemns Burma over Suu Kyi verdict
The US has criticized Burma's Supreme Court for not releasing Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, with one lawmaker saying the time had come...

My impossible task making Oscar nominee "Burma VJ"
It was at the end of 2004, before the Saffron Revolution, before the cyclone and before an American decided to swim across a lake to visit Aung San Suu Kyi...

Burma Awareness Week

US Campaign for Burma: Burma Awareness Week February 2010 at Goucher College

UC Berkeley Dance/Riot

The statewide day of action to protest university fee increases is March 4, 2010.


  • Burma's Aung San Suu Kyi appeal denied
  • Senate fails to pass unemployment extension
  • VA to reexamine claims of Gulf War Syndrome
  • UC Berkeley students protest fee increases; police riot

  • Paterson drops out of NY governor’s race.
  • Coca Cola labor abuse in Columbia More>>

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Thursday, February 25, 2010

Buddhists to Tiger Woods: See you Sunday!

(TMZ) Tiger Woods does his best work on Sundays -- which works out just perfectly for the Buddhist temple near Tiger's home. That is, if Tiger is truly serious about returning to his Buddhist roots. The Media Zone spoke to Howard Yeh of the [Chinese Mahayana] Guang Ming Temple in nearby Orlando, Florida. Yeh teaches an English speaking class that meets every Sunday in a group style atmosphere. [Never mind that Tiger is Thai Theravada, right? I mean, TMZ, everyone knows all Buddhism is the same-same. Wink.] The class focuses on helping people with their daily life practices. Yeh told TMZ, "We welcome everyone. We get a lot of walk-ins... He can just come right in." Looks like the Dharma is your court, Tiger. Source

The Google-NSA Alliance: Q&A

JR Raphael (PC World)
Google's facing a gaggle of questions over reports that it's working with the National Security Agency. According to a story first published by The Washington Post on Thursday, Google's enlisting the help of the NSA to better secure its electronic assets. The partnership is reportedly a response to the recent attack on Google's networks -- you know, the one that led to the whole "we're leaving China" debacle. The news, not surprisingly, is generating a wave of reaction on the Web: Is this normal? Is our information still secure? Is Google really evil after all? And has the NSA been writing those crazy Google interview questions all along? More>>

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Buddhism: Between Extremes

Sharon Salzberg (Huffington Post)

It is said that the Buddha did not inform or instruct others about the Dharma, but rather he proclaimed the truth, or more exactly, he revealed it. We can't give the truth to someone as an object, we can only point to it, inviting inspection. It is in that spirit that we can hear or read a teaching and then look at our own lives, at our own experiences to see whether anything might have been revealed about them.

In the Buddhist texts there are phrases depicting the response of people hearing a teaching: "That which was overturned has been righted, the hidden revealed, the way has been shown to one who was lost, a lamp has been held up in the darkness." In the end, we can't hold on to the teachings as an identity or an object, we cannot become attached to them because in some strange sense there is nothing to claim. There's no commodity we can take with us. There is only our lives, whether we live them wisely or whether we live them in ignorance. And this is everything.

The Buddha said once, "I do not argue with the world. It is the world which argues with me." Many times the Buddha was asked what he thought about a certain teacher, or a certain presentation or doctrine. He would often say things like, "Look to see if the path, if the practice, leads to the complete ending of greed, hatred, and delusion in your lives. And if it does, you can trust it." "Look to see whether it leads to the end of suffering. Look for yourselves." That is our invitation and responsibility. More>>

Burmese troops commit atrocities

BANGKOK, Thailand – Burmese troops have gang-raped, murdered, and even crucified Karen women, or those in their charge, who took on the roles of village chiefs in hopes they would be less likely abused than traditional male leaders, a Karen group said Thursday.

The atrocities – which also include beheadings, torture, forced prostitution, and slave labor – are often committed as the troops attempt to root out a 60-year-old insurgency by guerrillas of the Karen ethnic minority, the Karen Women Organization said in a report.

Although the United Nations and other organizations have documented similar atrocities against Burma's ethnic minorities, the government has consistently denied allegations of human rights abuses, saying its troops are only engaged in anti-terrorist operations. More>>


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What is Buddhism? Part III (video)

Dick Cheney survives 5th heart attack

Whew, thank goodness Dick Cheney sur-vived yet another revolt from his own heart. The internal revolution was put down by doctors using stents or secret procedures, which they are not willing to reveal at the moment. A pacemaker had already been installed. But one would think that with all the billions steered to Haliburton (which he was formerly CEO of) doctors could do a little more, like maybe steal/purchase someone else's heart. But conservatives who are very compassionate, like the group Cheney addressed only last week, would never consider that.

Nagas in the News: single-sex species

Mystery of single-sex species solved
How female-only species survive without genetic variation has long baffled biologists ( What are Nagas? - Asexual reproduction - Primates near extinction - Frozen human genome

Huge space-junk collision averted
Mayhem in the heavens is avoided when two space objects just miss crashing into each other.
What your face reveals about your health
In Chinese medicine, different parts of your face give clues to what’s going on inside your body. Five facial zones - Healing power of tea - Natural pain relief tips - Chinese medicine
New dinosaur species discovered in Utah
The giant Brachiosaurus creatures were embedded in stone so hard that explosives were necessary. Meet "Abydosaurus" - Dinos that didn't chew

Ancient wall may unlock Bible mystery
Newfound ruins could help settle a long-running dispute about the Bible's historical accuracy. More relics found in dig - Shroud of Turin exhibit - U.S. returning stolen coffin