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We have failed

We have failed

[This was originally sent to BPF's 5000-person strong email list. We usually don't post our email newsletters on Turning Wheel Media too, but this one felt important. If you are in ...

Sitting on #ShutItDown and Solidarity with Ferguson

Sitting on #ShutItDown and Solidarity with Ferguson

I'm sitting in my home in Oakland, California, meditating as police helicopters fly overhead. I am not at the protests demanding justice for Mike Brown, even though I live only a f ...

Gender Dysphoria and the Dharma

Gender Dysphoria and the Dharma

As a gender non-conforming person, I am prone to leaving my body, abandoning it, running away. Buddhist meditation helped me come back to a "buddha-nature drenched in flesh." ...

Right Anger and the Path to the End of Caste

Right Anger and the Path to the End of Caste

In the face of violence and brutality, we should develop "samma kodha" — Right Anger — for the sake of all beings. ...

A New Story of Us: Storytelling, Movement Building & the 4th Noble Truth

A New Story of Us: Storytelling, Movement Building & the 4th Noble Truth

"Stories can break the dignity of a people, but stories can also repair that broken dignity." – Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Nigerian writer ...

Systemic Youth Suffering: The Twelve-Fold Path of Social Transformation

Systemic Youth Suffering: The Twelve-Fold Path of Social Transformation

When it comes to the education of low-income students of color, mindfulness can easily mystify the structure of social oppression, shifting the analysis of school reform from the s ...

Towards Collective Liberation, or Why We Won’t Stop Talking About Racism

Towards Collective Liberation, or Why We Won’t Stop Talking About Racism

Race was a central theme at BPF’s National Gathering, with offerings like: The Invisible Majority: Will the Real Asian American Buddhist Please Stand Up? Revisiting the Middle Pass ...

Our Social Movements Need More Movement!

A little over a week ago, I co-taught a workshop with Mushim Patricia Ikeda at the Buddhist Peace Fellowship's National Gathering entitled "Movement for Right Action: Yoga for Socially Engaged Buddhists." Since then, I have been practicing what I preached there. Yesterday, for example, I opted to squat during part of a meeting at my zen center. When one of my fellow board members asked me if I needed a chai ...

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#3: In this Moment: When Suffering Ceases for Queer Africa

In my first video-essay, “The Dukkha of Loving Others: Homophobia in Africa,” I discussed how the recent rise in state-sponsored homophobia harms all Africans: those who identify as queer, those who are perceived as queer, those of us who are allies, and the masses being force-fed false narratives about identity and tradition. In my second essay, “How We Caused (and Perpetuate) the African Homophobia We Now ...

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A Roundabout Defense of the “Mandala Form” for the BPF National Gathering

NOTE: The recent Eco-Dharma Conference & Retreat at the Wonderwell Mounatin Refuge in Springfield, NH, featured a panel sponsored by the Buddhist Peace Fellowship. After a video presentation from BPF’s Katie Loncke and Dawn Haney, the panel -- moderated by BPF board member Samantha Wechsler, and featuring Angel Kyodo Williams, Kristin Barker, and myself -- spoke on the subject of “Eco-Charity’s Pitfalls ...

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Revisiting the Middle Passage Pilgrimage: Film Screening and Panel Discussion with Filmmaker and “Pilgrims”

Hosted by Buddhist Peace Fellowship and East Bay Meditation Center SATURDAY, AUGUST 30, 2014. 7 - 9:30 PM East Bay Meditation Center, 285 17th St., Oakland, CA 94612 Join us for the west coast premiere of Middle Passage Pilgrimage, followed by a panel of “pilgrims”—including filmmaker, Melinda Holm from New York; Kazu Haga, now a teacher at EBMC; and Brother Gilberto Perez who grew up in the Bronx and has, ...

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“Memory Is Political”: Storytelling, Movement Building, and the Third Noble Truth

The question of the usefulness or non-relevance of “the story” is one of the great “both / ands” of living a Buddhist life. And, all human stories, descending from the most cosmic myths down to the minor tale of the painful hangnail that snagged on a sweater thread, emerge from and reside in embodied – not abstracted or philosophical – human thought and memory. Here, for example, are two “true” stories. ...

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