Last night I did a talk at the BSWA on “Loving-kindness and aliens”, which will be up on the website soon. By pure chance, I came across this article today, which discusses the issue, how would different religions cope with the discovery of aliens?
Of course Buddhism is mentioned as a religion that is chill with aliens. But it doesn’t really acknowledge the fact that Buddhism, like other Indian religions, has a cosmology that not merely allows aliens, but assumes without question that life, sentient life, is found in countless places throughout the vast universe.
One thing aliens will, I have no doubt, share in common with us: they’ll suffer.
An extensive list of research and academics has issued a call for a more serious study of consciousness, including “fringe” aspects of psy research that are often dismissed by mainstream researchers.
Just to let you know, Ajahn Brahm will be in Sydney to give one talk only, on Wednesday, 5 November. Sadly, I won’t be able to make it, as I won’t be in Sydney until the new year. You’ll need to book tickets, and I’d suggest you hurry!
My friends at the Hindu Council have just let me know of a letter they received from Heinz, which admits that some of their juices contain animal products:
The clear apple juice used in the Golden Circle ambient (long life) juice and drink range is made clear using a variety of clarifying agents one of which is from a beef source
It really is kind of gross, when you eat things you just don’t have a clue what’s in it. Juice is the last place you’d expect to find animal products, but there you go.
Update: This important study on men’s well-being has just been published. The major findings: no. 1 cause of harm for men is alcohol; no. 1 cause of happiness is love. Somehow this seems familiar; where have I heard this before…
Dear Colleagues and Friends,
Please join us for AABCAP’s 8th Annual Conference where you will meet with old friends and make new friends.
This year our conference aims to explore men’s changing roles in society and how this effects both men and women.
This year we have done something slightly different, we have brought together 13 speakers, all with a Buddhist background, over a 100 years experience of specialisation working with men, to explore the unique challenges that we all, men and women, face as men navigate modern day Australian life. When half the population suffers the other half also suffers.
Talks will cover topics such as men and violence,working with Indigenous men, men and sex, men in relationships, corporate men, men and midlife and ageing and death.
As well, among the many papers we will also provide the opportunity for discussions, panels, and experiential sessions. Our speakers will bring us personal experiences of growing up male, as well their many years professional experience working in mental health with men.
In over 20 years working in Mental Health as a social worker and psychotherapist I have never been invited to a conference that specifically focuses on gender, in particular male gender, and the ways in which gender needs should be considered when working in a therapeutic alliance. Our ethical frameworks in mental health ask for us to be open and accepting of differences in ethnicity, religions, disabilities, and gender. And yet we receive little to no training in these areas.
This conference aims to explore some of the biases that each of us male and female therapists bring to our relationships; from our personal experiences as well our socio-cultural contexts, both of which can keep us from being helpful.
And in the end the idea is to enable conversations that enrich how women and men live more peacefully together.
If you have already registered or are participating perhaps you might like to send this on to your collegues and friends.
Thank you for your ongoing support.
Here’s a brilliant photo essay on climate change by Rob Beschizza of Boing Boing.
A petition has been set up in response to the banning of Ajahn Brahm’s paper on gender equality at the International Day of Vesak in Hanoi. It’s important that we make our voices heard.
Bhikkhu Bodhi has lent his support via Facebook:
For Buddhism to flourish in the modern world Buddhists must recognize that in regard to their capacities to understand and practice the Dharma, and to contribute to the spread of Buddhism, there are no essential differences between the genders. All human beings, regardless of gender, have the potential to learn, practice, realize, and serve the Dharma.
I’ve re-enabled the comments. Hopefully the problem is resolved; if not, I will have to close them again until it is sorted.
I have been assailed in recent months by a seemingly unstoppable cascade of abusive comments on this blog. The commenter is someone who I do not know, but has obviously had some sort of psychotic break, and I am their obsession. They have in addition been repeatedly harassing places across the country, including Bodhinyana, Santi, and I’m sure many other places.
Just today I opened up my blog to find some 230 abusive comments in the past couple of days. It’s too much, and I can’t block them as they regularly change their user name and IP address. So I have temporarily disabled all comments as best I can; although I am not quite sure how it will work, as WordPress does not provide a specific “Disable all comments” function. My apologies to all bloggists, and I will re-enable the comments as soon as the situation is sorted out.
I have been in contact with the NSW police, and we hope to get the matter resolved. Clearly this is someone who needs help, and hopefully we can do something.