Monthly Archives: May 2012

Rimay Monlam to be held at Garrison Institute this weekend

Tulku Sherab Dorje and Lama Surya Das have announced the Buddhist Peace Prayerfest Rimay Monlam. As the website explains, the Tibetan word rimay means”honoring and including all schools and traditions of Buddhadharma,” and monlam mean “an articulation of purpose; a mission statement; a formulation for realizing our highest aspirations.” Read More »

Traleg Rinpoche June 2012 programs rescheduled

The E-Vam Institute in New York has announced that two events planned in June with Traleg Kyabgon Rinpoche have been rescheduled due to a conflict. The June 22 date at Shambhala Meditation Center of New York , titled “The Legacy of Chögyam Trungpa,” has been pushed back to Friday, August 24, from 7 to 9 PM. The other event, a Mahamudra weekend at E-Vam Manhattan that was originally slated for June, has been changed to September 8 to 9.

For Rinpoche’s complete listing of events in 2012, please see the schedule here.

Mountain Echoes literary festival held in Bhutan

Photo: Jean-Marie Hullot via Flickr, CC-BY-SA license

Bhutan, known as the Land of the Thunder Dragon, recently held its third annual literary festival, Mountain Echoes, from May 20 to 26. The gathering of authors and musicians in this idyllic Buddhist kingdom opened with a lamp-lighting ceremony, important to both Hindus and Buddhists alike. The festival provided “a platform for authors from India and Bhutan to get together and engage in a cultural dialogue and understand Indian and Bhutanese literature in all its myriad forms and dimensions.” Read More »

Tibetan woman self-immolates in Ngaba, Tibet

People's Liberation Army in Ngaba, Tibet; photo by SFT HQ via Flickr, using a CC-BY license

Voice of America (VOA) is reporting that a 33-year-old woman named Rikyo, a mother of three, self-immolated and died today outside of Jonang Dzamthang monastery in Ngaba, in an apparent protest against Chinese rule in her country. This latest self-immolation comes after two young Tibetan men self-immolated on Sunday.

According to VOA, “This week’s immolations follow a new Chinese move to ban Tibetan Buddhists, including current and former government officials, students, and party members, from engaging in religious practices during the sacred month of Saka Dawa, which began May 21. Saka Dawa commemorates the Buddha’s birth, enlightenment and death.”

Read more on the story here.

Milestone encyclopedia of Buddhist philosophy published in Russia

Moscow Kremlin (by macle via Flickr, CC-BY license)

The seeds of dharma continue to spread. Russia, a country that has shown a growing interest in Buddhism in recent years, has seen the publication of a significant encyclopedia on Buddhist philosophy. Released in Moscow on May 23, the encyclopedia was released as scholars from around the world participated in the Third International Conference on Comparative Philosophy at the Institute of Philosophy in Moscow.

The 1,045-page work, edited by Dr. Marietta Stepanyants, included the contributions and assistance of many scholars. Dr. Abdusalam Guseinov, Director of the Institute of Philosophy, stated that the work is the first comprehensive publication of its kind on Buddhist philosophy derived from original sources in the country.

June 4 brings “Resounding Compassion” to San Francisco Zen Center

This Monday the San Francisco Zen Center (SFZC) will present “Resounding Compassion: A Concert for Peace,” a benefit at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in celebration of the SFZC’s founding in 1962. Proceeds will benefit both the SFZC and Shinryu-in, the family temple of Kiko Tatedera Roshi, located in Miyagi, Japan, which sustained heavy damage during the 2011 earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Tatedera Roshi currently serves as head priest at Sokoji Sōtō Mission of San Francisco, at which SFZC’s late founder (Shunryu Suzuki Roshi) served when he first arrived in the United States in 1959, when the mission was housed in an old Jewish synagogue. Read More »

Third annual BuddhaFest coming up June 14

The third annual BuddhaFest is coming up soon! Four days of films, music, dharma talks, and meditation are planned at Artisphere in Rosslyn, Virginia, from June 14 to 17.

Speakers at the event will include Sharon Salzberg, Tara Brach, Jonathan Frost, Rick Hanson, Ven. Pannavati Bhikkhuni, Tsoknyi Rinpoche, and Congressman Tim Ryan. Numerous films will be screened, including When the Iron Bird Flies, a documentary about the impact of Tibetan Buddhism on Western culture. A full schedule and tickets for all events are available here. Read More »

Two young Tibetans self-immolate in Tibetan capital of Lhasa

Photo via Tibet Post International

Two young Tibetan men self-immolated at Barkhor market outside of Jokhang temple in the Tibetan capital of Lhasa on Sunday, the latest in a wave of self-immolation protesters drawing attention to the issue of Chinese rule in Tibet. Tibet Post International points out that before setting themselves afire, the two shouted out unintelligible slogans, making it difficult to ascertain their motives. Read More »

Seattle Buddhist temple destroyed by fire on Sunday

According to a news report from Q 13 Fox, a Buddhist temple in Seattle was destroyed Sunday in a fire caused by burning food that had been left in a stove. Though the report leaves out a fairly important detail — the name of the temple — we believe it to be a Vietnamese temple known as Chua Bo De, at 3903 South Sunny View Drive in Seattle, Washington. The fire was difficult for firefighters to put out because of its location on a steep hill, according to the Seattle Fire Department. Damages are estimated to be around $600,000.

2012 SZBA National Conference set for this October

2008 participants

The Soto Zen Buddhist Association, comprised of Soto Zen teachers working to preserve and promote Soto Zen practice in North America, will be holding its 5th National Conference this October 3-7, 2012, at Great Vow Zen Monastery, in Clatskanie, Oregon. These conferences allow lineages to connect to discuss membership requirements and standards of training. This event is not open to the general public. Read More »

Shambhala International debuts ShambhalaNews

Shambhala Times, the community news magazine of Shambhala International, has just announced the debut of — the “newest member of the online Shambhala family.” Designed especially for readers who are not members of the Shambhala community, the site is, in the words of Communications Director Larry Barnett, “generally jargon-free, straightforward, and includes reports on the ways in which Shambhala and its members are working to create enlightened society.”

You can visit the new website here.

Alliance for Bhikkhunis announces search for new president as Susan Pembroke steps down

AfB logo

The Board of the Alliance for Bhikkhunis (AfB) has announced that it is searching for a new president for their board, following the news that Susan Pembroke, who founded the organization, will resign as president in October 2012.

The AfB is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to “providing information on the Bhikkhuni Sangha, educating laity about the essential role bhikkhunis play and raising funds to support bhikkhunis.” In addition, they publish the magazine Present: The Voices and Activities of Theravada Buddhist Women. Read More »

Buddhist temple in France will be Europe’s largest

Photo via

France will soon be home to Europe’s largest Buddhist temple, financed largely by Taiwan’s Fo Guang Shan and donors. The $20 million temple will be one in a complex of religious buildings that will include a church, synagogue, and mosque, all set in an ecofriendly environment. The temple, which is set to open June 22, is located in Bussy-Saint-Georges, near Paris. An architect, Polly Rolland, said that the purpose of the site is more cultural than religious. Read More »