Buddhism Resources

Foucault's Critique Long Sleeve Dark T-Shirt

Buddha Dispels Fear

This posture is known as Buddha Dispelling Mara. 'Mara' means evil, or fear. It is the grounding gesture of touching the earth that dispels Mara, allowing Buddha to focus on meditation, detaching himself from the emotional response of fear to the disturbance of Mara.

This image and many other Buddhism themed images are available on T-shirts, hoodies, stickers, buttons, magnets and a variety of other products at the Peace & Love Gift Shop

Buddhism on the Web


Internet Sacred Texts Archive :: Buddhism
An excellent online source for buddhist texts, both online and through their CD-ROM, the Internet Sacred Text Archive CD-ROM 3.0. Includes Mahayana, Therevada, Tibetan and Zen texts, along with ancillary materials, not to forget thousands of documents from the world's many religions, philosophies and arts.

This is a quiet place in cyberspace devoted to religious tolerance and scholarship
-- Internet Sacred Texts Archive

Wikipedia :: Buddhism
The Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia is an exquisite result of the internet. This is an excellent Buddhism resource, well-written and fully hyperlinked through the Wikipedia encyclopedia.

Buddha is a word in the ancient Indian languages Pali and Sanskrit which means one who is awake. It is related to the word Bodhi which means to awaken.
-- Wikipedia
Buddhism in the National Capital of Canada
One of the internet's enduring websites and a very good resource, inlcuding locally maintained information such as the Buddhism FAQ. For example, "Do Buddhists believe in God?"

Theists, agnostics and atheists are all welcome within Buddhism (and in this group); Buddhists make up their own minds about the existence or nonexistence of deities, if they get around to it. Some people find this question uninteresting, feeling that neither a 'yes' nor a 'no' answer contributes meaningfully to the elimination of suffering.

Access to Insight :: Readings in Theravada Buddhism
There are two major streams of Buddhism. The earliest Theravada (meaning "Doctrine of the elders"), is based on texts (sutras) written in the Pali language very close to that spoken by Buddha. This site, an excellent Theravada resource, includes translations of the Pali canon and a good history of Theravada. An excerpt of that history:

Owing to its historical dominance in southern Asia (Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Burma), Theravada is also identified as "Southern Buddhism," in contrast to "Northern Buddhism," which migrated northwards from India into China, Tibet, Japan, and Korea. Theravada is often equated with "Hinayana" (the "Lesser Vehicle"), in contrast to "Mahayana" (the "Greater Vehicle"), which is usually a synonym for Zen, Ch'an, and other expressions of Northern Buddhism. The use of "Hinayana" as a pejorative has its origins in the early schisms within the monastic community that ultimately led to the emergence of what would later become Mahayana. Today scholars of many persuasions use the term "Hinayana" without pejorative intent...

Mahayana Buddhism
This is the Mahayana page from a nicely rounded and concise discussion of Buddhism hosted by Washington State University. Better for the curious than more scholarly histories like the Buddhist Council of NSW history The Rise of the Mahayana. A sample for the WSU page:

The Mahayanists ... did not see themselves as creating a new start for Buddhism, rather they claimed to be recovering the original teachings of Buddha, in much the same way that the Protestant reformers of sixteenth century Europe claimed that they were not creating a new Christianity but recovering the original form. The Mahayanists claimed that their canon of scriptures represented the final teachings of Buddha; they accounted for the non-presence of these teachings in over five hundred years by claiming that these were secret teachings entrusted only to the most faithful followers.

Saicho and Tendai
I have a personal preference for the more light-hearted Mahayana forms over Theravadan asceticism. Whichever is the 'truer' form of Buddhism, I prefer the inflection that the filter of Chinese Daoism placed on the path which is best summed up by a Tendai proverb: To a Tendai monk, everything is wonderful. That is, in The Vinegar Tasters, Saicho would be smiling alongside Laozi. The following is excerpted from Tendai for Americans, reproduced in full on the site.

According to the Tendai view, all men, without exception, possess in their innermost being, the Buddha-nature, and are, therefore, capable of attaining to Nirvana. There are none who are doomed, except by themselves. All that is required is sincere practice.

Daily Routine at a Temple
Just to give you an idea what monastic life is like. Source from Gerald Roscoe's The Monastic Life.

Two hours before the sun appears on the eastern horizon the pealing of the temple bell signals the time, 4 a.m. In the kuti the monks, having spent the night on a thin mattress under a plain cotton blanket, open their eyes and rise from sleep to start the day. The Buddha said that four hours sleep should be enough for a monk, but nowadays monks generally sleep at least six hours, and when the bell wakes them, there is no hesitation about rising.

Recommended Buddhism Reading

links to Amazon.com
Buddhism Explained, Laurence-Khantipalo Mills
This book and the next, both from the Theravadan branch of Thailand, were my introduction to Buddhism. They contain essentially the same information though this one appears to be the more well-known. From a review:

One of the first things to be said about this book is that it is eminently readable. It should make a powerful appeal to two kinds of persons. First, those largely ignorant of Buddhism who are sincerely eager to repair that ignorance will find it exactly what they need. Second, a good many people with a fairly extensive knowledge of Buddhism would be happy to have it on their bookshelves because it provides a complete summary of all the essentials of Buddhist teachings and practice.

The Triple Gem: An Introduction to Buddhism, Gerald Roscoe
Excerpts and explorations of this book appear within my article Vipassana Climber. Now, just to show that authors of these two books are of the same mind, Roscoe paraphrases Mills:

Dukkha should not be translated [simply] as suffering because there is plenty of experience in the world which is pleasant but, like all conditioned things, is impermanent, and therefore even though it is not suffering it is dukkha.
Laurence-Khantipalo Mills
Paraphrased by Gerald Roscoe

The Marathon Monks of Mount Hiei, John Stevens
This beautiful book documents in image and text a peculiar yet exhileratingly unique group of monks. The Tendai monks of Mount Hiei in Kyoto include among their buddhist practices running marathons. But to a Tendai monk, "marathon" means running approximately 26 miles every day for a year. In hand-made straw sandals (several pairs a day).

In 1995, the Nomadic Spirit had the pleasure of visiting the monks of Mt. Hiei's Shugakuin temple. There are photographs and an Nomadic Spirit entry on this site.

Buddhism on the Nomadic Spirit

Buddha Images Gallery
A gallery of photographs featuring Buddha images from around the world.
Mount Kinabalu I
A meditation on climbing meditation...sort of.
Vipassana Climber.
Buddhism Basics.
About 'Film at Eleven'.
Life is not all suffering: there is glee.
On being a monk in Thailand, and other corrections.
The Alien Within.
Is there 'self?'
Buddha PARTIES!!!!
But in the morning, he suffered.
Risking Dukkha.
Perhaps I was brought up too westernised to avert myself from all that suffering when there's so much fun to be had?
Sugar Queen
A little prose poetry inspired by the Shugakuin monastery on Mt. Hiei in Kyoto.
Virtual Buddha
The Pali Canon on CD!
Wat's up, Doc?
Thailand, temples & museums.