A missed opportunity: a review of ‘Secularizing Buddhism’
A new collection of essays, 'Secularizing Buddhism: new perspectives on a dynamic tradition', unfortunately represents a missed opportunity to explore the emergence of secular Buddhism, to critically examine its assumptions, and to provide us with an accurate snapshot of the diverse views and practices of secular Buddhists.
Interwoven nature: reflections on reconnecting body, mind and world
A longtime practitioner of Zazen and a secular Buddhist, John Danvers argues that mindful meditation enables those who practice it regularly to experience the self as a process that extends out into the world, to realise how open and porous we are and how interconnected we are with other beings and with our surroundings.
How to stop bigotry
We can practice pulling bigotry out by the roots every day in our own worlds. Identify who you treat as ‘other’, be kind to yourself about it, then focus your attention on commonality of experience - of basic human needs. Practice it again and again and again. This is wise attention.
What if our ordinary experience is all that matters
To experience ourselves - our breath, the sensations in the body, the pain in the knees, the feeling of the wind or the rain on our cheeks - all of this is utterly pertinent to the question I am suggesting you ask: 'What is this?' But please remember that 'this' refers to what is so close to you that you tend to completely overlook it.
Review of Rhonda V. Magee’s ‘The Inner Work of Racial Justice’
This book skillfully weaves together personal stories of Magee and other workshop participants, meditative and reflective practices which help us develop mindfulness and compassion in the context of confronting racism, and an account of how racism affects all of us – people of color as well as those who our society labels as ‘white.’
Secular Dharma Foundation: Educational tools & resources
The mission of the Secular Dharma Foundation is to foster the advancement of emotional and psychological well-being through the education and integration of mindfulness, psychology, and various therapeutic modalities.
Winton Higgins on Ron Purser’s “McMindfulness”
Commercialised mindfulness meditation is to Buddhist meditation what McDonald’s offerings are to real cooking, the title of Ron Purser’s book infers. But there’s more to that title – it has antecedents, according to Sydney secular Buddhist teacher, Winton Higgins.
Insight meditation and the inner life
In the first of three talks at a day-long workshop in New Zealand in 2019 Winton Higgins discusses the Buddha’s foundational teaching for meditative practice, the Satipaṭṭhāna sutta (the discourse on the focuses of awareness) from a secular Buddhist perspective.
Mindfulness is a hot commodity: looking for a quick fix?
Something that goes by the name ‘mindfulness meditation’ is a hot commodity these days. You can find many models on the market, some are more or less expensive, and of varying quality (like cars and dishwashers). The brands that are on the market either claim claiming origins in the Buddhist tradition, which lends them the kudos and the aura of ancient wisdom, or studiously avoid doing so.
Challenges to Buddhist meditation practice now
In this talk given in 2018 Winton Higgins compares the expectations of people living in the Buddha’s era (5th century BCE) about meditation practice, and to our own views about the goals of meditation.
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