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misc. essays
These are various essays that just don't fit into any particular catagory but are still interesting. Basically, listed alphabetically by author. Questions, broken links, suggestions, etc, please .
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On the Buddha Trail in India: a photoessay: Photographs of my trip to visit a number of Buddhist sites in India in February and March of 2006. The link will take you to a short introduction and links to the photo pages.

Buddhism by Numbers: Ever wonder what the Six Gunas are? the Seven Riches? the Ten Concentrations? the Thirty-two Marks of Perfection of the Buddha? Then this chart of over 200 numbers may help.

Robert Aitken: The Diamond Sangha's entire sutra book is here. Last updated in 1993.
Formal Practice: Buddhist or Christian "In this paper, I write from a Mahayana perspective and take up seven Buddhist practices and the views that bring them into being, together with Christian practices that may be analogous, in turn with their inspiration."

Kenneth Arnold: The Circle of the Way: Reading the Gospel of Thomas as a ChristZen Text "When Jesus opens his mouth in the Gospel of Thomas, there was a Buddha sitting on his tongue." Arnold interprets some of the gospel in a Zen Buddhist fashion. from: Crosscurrents, Winter 2002

Depression: short articles on depression from a Buddhist point of view by ven. Thubten Gyatso, Lama Zopa Rinpoche and Thich Nhat Hanh.

Bernard Faure: Chan/Zen Studies in English: the State of the Field Originally published in Cahiers d'Extrême-Asie, Faure surveys the field. Includes an excellent bibliography.

Mark S. Ferrara: Ch'an Buddhism and the Prophetic Poems of William Blake , from the Journal of Chinese Philosophy. An interesting comparison between Ch'an and William Blake.

Nelson Foster & Jack Shoemaker: An Open Letter on Journalistic Integrity and the Shambhala Sun Foster & Shoemaker are upset that the Shambhala Sun commissioned John Tarrant to write an obituary of Robert Aitken Roshi without revealing that the two had parted company acrimonously a decade before Aitken Roshie died.

Karl F. Friday: Bushidó or Bull? A Medieval Historian's Perspective on the Imperial Army and the Japanese Warrior Tradition
"The military tradition of the medieval samurai has very little in common with the "bushidó" that was current in the early twentieth century, and does very little to explain the behavior of the Japanese Imperial Army." from The History Teacher, Volume 27, Number 3, May 1994, pages 339-349.

Mary M Garrett Chinese Buddhist Religious Disputation If Buddhism is suspicious of language, how did monks engage in religious debates? Garrett traces the history back to India and shows how some monks "attempted to transcend these contradictions, subverting disputation through creative linguistic and extra-linguistic strategies." from Argumentation 11, 1997

Robert W Gaskins: "Adding Legs to a Snake": A Re-analysis of Motivation and the Pursuit of Happiness from a Zen Budhist Perspective Modern psychological theory holds than happiness can be found through greater competence, autonomy and relatedness. Gaskins explains this motivation theory and then looks at how Zen Buddhists see happiness and notes that modern psychology tends to try to strengthen the sense of self while Zen Buddhists believe that "self" is the source of all unhappiness. An interesting essay with some nice insights and easily understood explanations of both Zen Buddhist concepts and modern psychology. from Journal of Educational Psychology, 1999, V.91, No.2

Peter N Gregory: The Sudden/Gradual Polarity: A Recurrent Theme In Chinese Thought Gregory summarizes 12 papers from Journal Of Chinese Philosophy Vol.9 1982 pp. 471-486

Neils Hammer: The Importance of Hinayana and Mahayana: Hammer reviews two translations by Christian Lindtner of sutras from both traditions and "concentrate[s] on a couple of points raised by the texts and the translation before discussing some of the key issues regarding the influence of Buddhism, the general importance of Buddhist thought on the absence of an ego and a self, and the nature of consciousness vis-a-vis mental phenomena." from Asian Philosophy, Jul 99, Vol. 9 Issue 2

Sarah Haynes: An Exploration of Jack Kerouac's Buddhism: text and life Hayes looks at the famous 'Beat' writer's Buddhism: what influenced him, what he felt about his Buddhism and what influences he had on Buddhism in America. from Contemporary Buddhism, Vol. 6, No. 2, November 2005

Steven Heine: A Critical Survey of Works on Zen Since Yampolsky Heine provides a short essay on the state of academic research into Zen Buddhism and an extensive listing of significant books, articles and dissertions. This is an excellent place to begin research into some of the more important academic work on Zen Buddhism. from: Philosophy East & West Volume 57, Number 4 October 2007 577–592

Christine Heller: Jack Kerouac, Gary Snyder: Chasing Zen Clouds Heller claims that Keouac was not really into Zen Buddhism but Snyder was. see also Sarah Haynes: An Exploration of Jack Kerouac's Buddhism: text and life

Stewart W Holmes: What is the Zen Master Talking About? Holmes attempts to understand the language of Zen through a mechanistic process, i.e., Buddha nature can be understood as DNA. "The world of static things exists as a product of our neurosensory symbolic transformations of Reality-1." I'm not sure I know what Holmes is talking about so I leave it up to you to see if this approach works for you. from ETC: A Review of General Semantics Vol. 50 Issue 2 Summer.1993 Pp.157-164

Alioune Koné: Zen in Europe: A Survey of the Territory An overview of the development of Zen in Europe going from the earliest times to the jpresent. Also discusses issues such as sustainability, legitimacy and authority in European Zen centers.
original source
Jack Kornfeld: The Eightfold Path for the Household free e-book (143 pages in .pdf)

Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche: Buddhism In a Nutshell: The Four Seals of Dharma "People often ask me: “What is Buddhism in a nutshell?” Or they ask, “What is the particular view or philosophy of Buddhism?” Rinpoche answers this with reference to the four seals of the dharma.

David Loy: Letter on the September 11, 2001 attacks on America. Loy looks at the attacks and the reactions from a Buddhist viewpoint. from Journal of Religious Ethics
On the Nonduality of Good and Evil: Buddhist Reflections on the New Holy War Loy discusses how the duality of good vs evil leads to an endless cycle of violence and offers a Buddhist way out. (This is a longer version of his letter above.) from the Buddhist Peace Fellowship
Transcendence East and West: East and West may have met but what about East and East? Loy explores the differences between India, China and Japan to show how they differ. The West gets a look in at the end. from: Man and World, Vol.26, Issue 4, 1993

Scott A. Mitchell: "Christianity is for rubes; Buddhism is for actors": U.S. media representations of Buddhism in the wake of the Tiger Woods' scandal In light of the sexual scandal surrounding golfer Tiger Woods, a self-professed Buddhist, Mitchell looks at how the U.S. media reported on Buddhism. "I argue that during the Woods affair, Buddhism was deployed in the service of a pre-existing narrative of conflict between conservatives and liberals that permeates the current U.S. media landscape. "

John R. MacRae: Soto Zen in America MacRae looks at some Soto Zen centers and discusses the practice and influence these centers have on students. A short essay as part of a longer study by Professor MacRae.

Charles Muller: Zen Buddhism and Western Scholarship: Will the Twain Ever Meet? Muller discusses what he percieves as a gap between scholarship in Zen and it's relevance to the practioners. Bemoaning the fact that most scholars do not actually practice Zen, Muller feels that there is a disconnect (and in some cases a misunderstanding) between the practice and scholarly research. An interesting and timely essay. from Journal of Buddhist Studies, Vol. 9, Dec. 2004. pp. 261-285

Paul David Numrich: Two Buddhisms Further Considered Numrich looks at two Buddhist groups, ethnic Asian Buddhists and non-Asian converts. "This essay presents an analytical history and critical assessment of the two Buddhisms notion. I will recommend that advocates and critics alike acknowledge the value of the notion, and that they direct their energies toward advancing the field in creative ways, both within and outside the two Buddhisms paradigm." from Contemporary Buddhism, Vol. 4, No. 1, 2003

Gregory K. Ornatowski: Continuity and Change in the Economic Ethics of Buddhism: Evidence from the History of Buddhism in India, China and Japan Buddhist economic ethics for monks and laity historically shared a common principle of nonattachment to wealth. At the same time, while lay economic ethics have consistently stressed merchant-type values and the importance of giving to the sangha (dàna), monastic ethics underwent major changes....an analysis of Buddhist soteriologies and major concepts such as anàtman, karma, pratãtyasamutpàda, dàna and karuõà, reveals that issues of economic equality and justice in Buddhism are dealt with less by attempting to change the existing distribution of wealth than by cultivating the proper ethical attitudes toward wealth and giving. from Journal of Buddhist Ethics, Volume 3 1996:198-240

Andrew Rawlinson: Western Buddhist Teachers Rawlinson argues that the West has far more varieties of Buddhism than the East ever could. This short research article gives a thumb-nail sketch of Buddhism and Western Buddhist teachers in the West. It is, however, heavily American and barely mentions Europe or Australia.

Amy Samy: Why Did Bodhidharma Come From the West? An excerpt from Amy Samy's book.

James Sellman: A belated response to Hu Shih and D.T. Suzuki. (debate on Ch'an and Zen Buddhism in Philosophy East and West, vol. 3, p. 3 an p. 25, April 1953) This is an ancient debate between Suzuki and Hu Shih and I add it here just for historical reasons.

Shauna L. Shapiro, Linda E. Carlson, John A. Astin, Benedict Freedman: Mechanisms of Mindfulness A psychological look at the Buddhist practice of 'mindfulness'. This is a technical psychological article from Journal of Clinical Psychology, Vol 62 (3), 2006, pp373-386

Matsumoto Shiro: The Meaning of "Zen" Shiro explains what he sees as what the term 'Zen' means.

Michelle Spuler: Characteristics of Buddhism in Australia This essay looks at Buddhism's growth and characteristics in Australia. A little dated now but of interest. from Journal of Contemporary Religion, Vol. 15, No. 1, 2000

D. T. Suzuki: Manual of Zen Buddhism This 84-page pdf document was first published in 1935 as the final in a tryptych. It covers areas such as Gathas and Prayers, Dharanis, Sutras, selections from Chinese and Japanese masters and ends with discussion of Buddhist statues and paintings that might be found in a Zen monastery. Each area is much better covered in other writings but I include this here for historical purposes.

John Tarrant: Robert Aitken's Amazing Life Tarrant writes an obituary for the Shambhala Sun of his teacher and reveals doubts about Aitken's enlightenment, much to the chagrin of Nelson Foster & Jack Shoemaker.

Mark T Unno: Questions in the Making: A Review Essay on Zen Buddhist Ethics in the Context of Buddhist and Comparative Ethics Unno reviews four books on Buddhist ethics and examines Buddhist ethics in the light of comparative ethics. from Journal of Religious Ethics

Martin J Verhoeven: Science Through Buddhist Eyes Verhoeven looks critically at the view that science and Buddhism are in simple harmony. "...we might better advance the discussion not by highlighting where Buddhism and science see eye-to-eye, but precisely where they do not, perhaps forcing each to confront its own contradictions and shortcomings."

Brian Daizen Victoria: Engaged Buddhism: A Skeleton in the Closet? Victoria continues his critique of nationalism in Japanese Buddhism... "it should be clear that the skeleton in the closet of today's Engaged Buddhism movement is simply this: nationalism. And Engaged Buddhism's ongoing challenge is how to deal with nationalism in the context of the teachings of the Buddha Dharma." Highly recommended. See also reviews of Victoria's books: Zen at War and Zen War Stories from: Journal of Global Buddhism

Alan Watts: Beat Zen, square Zen, and Zen. (Zen Buddhism as practiced in China, Japan and the US) An early essay by Watts that looks at Zen in the West, especially in the context of the "beat" movement.

John Wright: Language and emptiness: An interview with Norman Fischer Wright and Fischer discuss the use of language in Zen and poetry. from: Chicago Review Vol. 39 No. 3-4, 1993 Pp.67-73

Yamaguchi Zuiho: The Core Elements of Indian Buddhism Introduced into Tibet: A Contrast with Japanese Buddhism Zuiho questions "the widespread assumption...that Buddhism is something more or less like what Mo-ho-yen taught" and he takes a look at "the chief marks of what is taken to be 'proper' or 'correct' Buddhism in the Tibetan tradition, with particular attention to the distinction between 'bodhi-wisdom' and'liberation.'"