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Twenty one years of fullness (& emptiness) and still going strong…
Twenty one years seems like a long time! it’s a long time to have been running a small magazine, albeit just a blink in the eye of eternity as Blake might have said. Be that as it may we feel there is something to celebrate in Urthona’s continued existence, and so this will be a retrospective issue in which some of our favourite themes, writers and artists from the last 21 years appear.
From the start I wanted Urthona to be a journal for Buddhists and others who had a strong feeling for both western art (ancient and modern) and eastern spirituality. I thought then and still believe that the dialogue between the two is only just beginning, and that there is no reason at all why this dialogue should not eventually be as fruitful as that inaugurated by the discovery of the entire Platonic corpus secreted away in Byzantine monasteries, 500 years ago.
Urthona was started in Bristol ijn 1992. Things really advanced when I moved to Cambridge and met Shantigarbha, who from the start had ambitious ideas for the magazine, got lots of people involved and persuaded us to move from photocopying to a proper printer and a colour cover. Our first colour cover, issue three, spring 1995 featured a truly sublime painting of an iceberg by keith grant, who had not long ago had a major retrospective at Cambridge’s Fitzwilliam Museum. Truly Urthona had arrived with this issue and set standards of content that were a bench-mark as the standard of the layout slowly improved. We look forward to our next decade, and extend our deepest thanks to the many, many generous spirits who have contributed in so many ways over the decades.
Yours in the Buddha-Dharma, Ratnagarbha