Rethinking the Dharma / Reimagining Community #38 November 2022

October 30, 2022


Welcome to our November 2022 newsletter.

This month we highlight new articles by Robert M. Ellis, Carmel Shalev and Mike Slott, a practitioner’s account of her journey to secular Buddhism, and a Kickstarter funding project for a new book on reflective meditation.


To be a mensch 

In the third of three articles on the topic of Uncertainty, Care and Responsibility, Carmel Shalev discusses how the basic values of care and compassion are strongly connected to a feminine voice and ethics.

Find out more.

What is human flourishing?

Mike Slott offers an account of human flourishing which incorporates Buddhist insights, Marx’s view of human nature, and Martha Nussbaum’s capabilities approach. To flourish, we need to cultivate mindfulness and compassion while creating a society which provides the resources and support for human flourishing for all.

Find out more.

A practitioner’s journey to secular Buddhism: Katie

Katie Pope first became interested in meditation and Buddhism through her yoga practice. She found that secular Buddhism’s focus on how we can live a good and full life while we are here deeply resonated with her. 

Find out more.

What’s the problem? Not ‘suffering’ but absolutization 

Robert M. Ellis argues that absolutization, the assumption that we have the whole story, is the basis for our failure to respond optimally in problematic situations. By synthesizing Buddhist insights and other perspectives, we can avoid absolutization and live more skillfully.

Find out more.

Kickstarter funding project for a new book on reflective meditation

Nelly Laufer and Linda Modaro have written a book together which explores a kinder, gentler form of meditation. The book is called Reflective Meditation: Cultivating kindness and curiosity in the Buddha’s company. The book is being published by Tuwhiri, a secular Buddhist publishing imprint, and will be released in February 2023. To fund the costs of publishing the book, Tuwhiri has created a Kickstarter funding project that is now active. To help support the publishing of this important book, click here.

Find out more.


Connect with the Secular Buddhist Network

Online discussion group  – meets the third Thursday of each month on Zoom. It’s a great opportunity for secular Buddhists and those who are interested in learning more about a secular approach to the dharma to connect with each other and to discuss key issues.

Online meditation group – meets every Sunday. Each meeting of the group lasts about 40 minutes. We start with a welcome and introduction (2-5 minutes), followed by a 30-minute silent meditation, and close with a brief period of sharing about our meditation experiences.

Online reading group – meets the first Thursday of each month. The readings are chosen by the participants and focus on issues related to a secular Buddhism, including basic concepts of a secular approach, meditation, mindfulness, and the relationship between secular Buddhism and traditional Buddhist lineages and practices.

Online group on Exploring aging from a secular Buddhist perspective – meets the last Monday of each month. The group shares experiences of aging and how we can use our practice to respond skillfully to the process of aging.

SBN online courses on Exploring a secular dharma – Learn about the basic ideas and concepts of secular Buddhism through a free online course.


Upcoming Events, Workshops, and Retreats

SBN’s Calendar of Meetings and Courses  – A calendar of SBN sponsored discussion and meditation groups, as well as SBN’s courses on secular Buddhism.

Mindfulness, Soulfulness, and Socially Engaged Practice: a BCBS Path Program – May 2023 to May 2024 (online)
with Rhonda V. Magee

In this year-long program, Rhonda V. Magee will explore mindfulness, soulfulness, and social engagement in the face of such challenges as climate distress, immigration and demographic changes, economic inequality, the increasing implications of extractive technology, and the increasing visibility of White supremacy-based ideology and politics. This program consists of two residential retreats, and monthly zoom gatherings. The application deadline is 1 December 2022. For more information, click here.


If you are on Facebook, we would be grateful if you would ‘like’ and ‘share’ any item in this newsletter that you think is valuable or the newsletter itself. Look out for Secular Buddhist Network on Facebook.


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