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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Finding Out More About Early Buddhist Women

Wed, 28 Dec, 2016 - 12:52

Finding Out More About Early Buddhist Women

Wed, 28 Dec, 2016 - 12:52

With this post we present another fine review by Sarah Clelland of a recent work of scholarship on women monastics in early Buddhism.

Alice Collett, Lives of Early Buddhist Nuns: Biographies as History, Oxford University Press, India, 2016

Review by Sarah Clelland

In Lives of Early Buddhist Nuns Alice Collett, now lecturer at Nālanda University in India, explores changing attitudes to women in Buddhism through the stories of six early nuns: Dhammadinnā, Khemā, Kisāgotamī, Paṭācārā, Bhaddā Kuṇḍalakesā and Uppalavaṇṇā. In the first half...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Online Pāli School

Thu, 6 Oct, 2016 - 11:17

Online Pāli School

Thu, 6 Oct, 2016 - 11:17

Prof Richard Gombrich is running another of his online Pāli schools, this coming 7–26 November, recommended as an introduction to the Pāli language. Full details at http://ocbs.org/courses/pali-online-school/.

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

What was it like for early Buddhist women?

Sat, 1 Oct, 2016 - 13:30

What was it like for early Buddhist women?

Sat, 1 Oct, 2016 - 13:30

Here, Dharmacārinī Vajratārā reviews a collection of scholarly essays exploring how it was for women in early Buddhism – at a time before feminism when nevertheless women were taken seriously as dharma practitioners.

Women in Early Indian Buddhism: Comparative Textual Studies

essays by various scholars, edited and introduced by Alice Collett

Oxford University Press, USA, 2014, 274pp., hback and ebook

Reviewed by Vajratārā

What were the attitudes towards women in early Indian Buddhism? Does textual analysis of early Buddhist texts corroborate the idea that early Buddhists saw women...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Faith and Imagination in Pure Land Buddhism

Tue, 28 Jun, 2016 - 12:05

Faith and Imagination in Pure Land Buddhism

Tue, 28 Jun, 2016 - 12:05

Dharmacārī Saccanāma reviews a ground-breaking new book on Pure Land Buddhism, with new translations of sūtras, and finds much to appreciate and enjoy:

Ratnaguna & Śraddhāpa

Great Faith, Great Wisdom: practice and awakening in the Pure Land sūtras of Mahāyāna Buddhism

Windhorse Publications, Cambridge 2016, £14 pback, also in ebook

Review by Saccanāma

There is a debate going on in Buddhist publishing at present: titles such as Buddhism Without Beliefs, After Buddhism and Buddhism is a Religion: You can Believe It indicate the nature of that debate. On one...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Advice from the Zen Master – Don’t be a Jerk

Wed, 25 May, 2016 - 11:58

Advice from the Zen Master – Don’t be a Jerk

Wed, 25 May, 2016 - 11:58

In this post we present a delightful review by Vidyavajra of a new book that tries to put Dōgen’s master-work, the Shōbōgenzō, into vernacular English – with some success, it would seem.

Brad Warner, Don’t Be a Jerk: And Other Practical Advice from Dōgen, Japan’s Greatest Zen Master, New World Library, 2016 (£13 pback).

review by Vidyavajra

On the cover is a comic book depiction of a godzilla-like monster with beams of fire coming from its eyes, crossing a Hokusai-like sea of waves, towards a medieval Japanese village....

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Review: Cultivating Compassion, Realising Emptiness

Tue, 1 Mar, 2016 - 09:59

Review: Cultivating Compassion, Realising Emptiness

Tue, 1 Mar, 2016 - 09:59

We present here a review by Sarah Clelland of Anālayo’s new book, focussing on the interest and challenge of understanding the profound meditations that Anālayo writes about.

Anālayo: Compassion and Emptiness in Early Buddhist Meditation

Windhorse Publications, Cambridge, UK, 2015, £12 pback, £6 ebook

Review by Sarah Clelland

I have often wished that the Buddha was my meditation teacher. In the early texts, we get a glimpse into the work of a great teacher who spontaneously tailors his expression of the Dhamma to the person in...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

2016 E-learning Course on Asian Buddhist Women

Tue, 16 Feb, 2016 - 11:58

2016 E-learning Course on Asian Buddhist Women

Tue, 16 Feb, 2016 - 11:58

Once again, Ven Anālayo has organised an online lecture course, this year on the theme of ‘Asian Buddhist Women’. Last year’s lectures were very informative and often interesting, bringing scholars from around the world into our living rooms via the internet. The whole course is without charge. Here are the details:

‘The Numata Center for Buddhist Studies at the University of Hamburg, in cooperation with the Dharma Drum Institute of Liberal Arts, offers an E-learning Course on Asian Buddhist Women. The course consists of...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

From Buddhist economics to a new Dharma politics

Fri, 15 Jan, 2016 - 10:59

From Buddhist economics to a new Dharma politics

Fri, 15 Jan, 2016 - 10:59

The following is an important and original combination of a review of Vaddhaka’s book The Buddha on Wall Street, and an article exploring some political implications of Vaddhaka’s Buddhist critique of neo-liberal capitalism.

A review-article of Vaddhaka Linn, The Buddha on Wall Street, Windhorse Publications, Cambridge, 2015

by Manjusiha

Bryan Magee, in Confessions of a Philosopher, says, of Schopenhauer and Hegel, ‘I do not think anything in the whole history of philosophy compares with this invective by one now world-famous philosopher against another’ (1998, p.466). The feud between philosophers...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Buddhist Women’s Verses

Sun, 10 Jan, 2016 - 13:51

Buddhist Women’s Verses

Sun, 10 Jan, 2016 - 13:51

We present below a review by Sarah Clelland of a new translation by Charles Hallisey of the Therīgāthā – verses by female followers of the Buddha, preserved in the Pāli language.

Therigatha: Poems of the First Buddhist Women (Murty Classical Library of India vol.3), translated by Charles Hallisey

Harvard University Press, 2015, 336pp., hardback £22.95

Review by Sarah Clelland

The Murty Classical Library of India is a new multi-volume series of translations of the great literary works of India. This third volume – and the only Buddhist text out...

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Dhivan Thomas Jones

Pyrrho and the Buddha: Reasons to be Sceptical

Sun, 6 Sep, 2015 - 10:57

Pyrrho and the Buddha: Reasons to be Sceptical

Sun, 6 Sep, 2015 - 10:57

Christopher Beckwith, Greek Buddha: Pyrrho’s Encounter with Early Buddhism in Central Asia, Princeton University Press, 2015.

review by Dhivan Thomas Jones

Classical sources tell us that a young man named Pyrrho travelled with Alexander the Great and his army to north-west India in 324 bce. During their Indian sojourn, Pyrrho and his teacher, Anaxarchus, met Indian gymnosophists, ‘naked wise men’, and it is said that Pyrrho’s philosophy developed as a result of such meetings. When he returned from India, Pyrrho is said to have taught...