WPLongform

The Long Way Home, by Sun Shuyun

On my journey, I think I found the other side of Buddhism, predominately the role of the mind. Buddhism is not as criticised or attacked in the historical Marxist approach, the materialistic approach which maintains that the mind is really not important and that our material condition determines everything. Some of the monks in the monasteries laid down their lives to defend their faith…

Self is Heavy, by Buddhadasa Bhikkhu

Often, when we say that there is no self, people get worried, or angry. Their attachment and identification to this idea of a self is so strong that they actually become hostile towards us if we begin to say there is no such thing. We need to explain this a bit, therefore, so that you don’t get mad at us. The idea of a self is common to everyone. Whether we come from the East or the West, we have some kind of idea and belief in a self, every one of us, absolutely; it is a fundamental illusion that arises in all human minds. Indians, Thais, Chinese, everybody, is walking around with this idea of a self, a soul, an atman, or whatever we want to call it.

Dhammapada Studies, by Sylvia Swain

For those who know little of Buddhism or who find it obscure, the Dhammapada is an ideal book to begin with. For those who know and love Buddhism it is likely already to be a constant companion and a reminder, just like having the gentle hand of Gautama on the reins of the unruly heart…

Brahma Faring in 21st-Century Mazes, by Sylvia Swain

But first there is the maze which has to be negotiated. It is by definition a labyrinth—tortuous and serpentine—intended to confuse and disorientate. This brings us to the title: Brahma Faring in 21st-Century Mazes. The mind, because of its various functions, monkey origins, and self-deceptions, is very like those fascinating hedge mazes with their convolutions of temptation and the predicaments into which they lead us…

Vital Actions by John Peaty

Within the first six months of my coming across Buddhism, I had bought about two dozen Buddha-rupas, Kwan-yins, joss sticks, and enough books to open a library that would rival the one at Eccleston Square. Then I realised that there was more to it than that. I had to do something as well…