After Buddhism: Rethinking the Dharma for a Secular Age by Stephen Batchelor

By Stephen Batchelor

A few twenty-five centuries after the Buddha begun instructing, his message maintains to motivate humans around the globe, together with these residing in predominantly secular societies. What does it suggest to conform spiritual practices to secular contexts?

Stephen Batchelor, an the world over recognized writer and instructor, is devoted to a secularized model of the Buddha's teachings. The time has come, he feels, to articulate a coherent moral, contemplative, and philosophical imaginative and prescient of Buddhism for our age. After Buddhism, the fruits of 4 a long time of research and perform within the Tibetan, Zen, and Theravada traditions, is his try to set the checklist immediately approximately who the Buddha used to be and what he was once attempting to train. Combining serious readings of the earliest canonical texts with narrative bills of 5 contributors of the Buddha's internal circle, Batchelor depicts the Buddha as a realistic ethicist instead of a dogmatic metaphysician. He envisions Buddhism as a always evolving tradition of awakening whose lengthy survival is because of its means to reinvent itself and engage creatively with each one society it encounters.

This unique and provocative booklet provides a brand new framework for realizing the amazing unfold of Buddhism in today's globalized global. It additionally reminds us of what was once so startling concerning the Buddha's imaginative and prescient of human flourishing.

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Extra resources for After Buddhism: Rethinking the Dharma for a Secular Age

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69) One arrow shatters three forts. (63) O n e day no work, One day The pair o f eyes of a cormorant —goggling. t^o food. One man's speech One pistil is a rapid stream; o f a plum blossom: The other's, Its fragrance fills the Billion Worlds. simple and artless. (63) (71) Hard to pick a handful Strolling together o f willow leaves the same path matching the wind, along the mountainside, Streaming Each eye sees over the jeweled different wind and mist. balustrade. (66) (72) A single moon One light, on the sea: a million lights, Light, l i g h t no limit.

76) Between snipe and clam the fight doesn't stop: One staff's blow, one scar's streak. Both fall into (77) the fisherman's hands. One true man o f no rank. I'll explain in detail (78) w h y Bodhidharma One blind man leads came to China: many blind men Listen to the evening Into the fire hole hand in hand. bell sounds. Watch (79) the setting sun. . For one thing, Where sun and moon to better the view cannot reach— o f this temple; There For another, is a wonderful sight. to build a guidepost for posterity.

Are these of any use? These are all useless, it is true. Nevertheless, Zen is, as I have said, paradoxical in every way; these are also the way the ideals of all Zen followers should be seen. As you will see later, an old dull-pointed gimlet is more highly admired than any satori-stinking, sharp-pointed tool. Zen is not philosophy. It is best explained by means of the parable of Indra's net in the Kegon (Hua-yen) sutra. Indra is the god w h o lives on the top o f Mount Sumeru. In his heavenly palace is a huge net, every knot of which is adorned with a jewel.

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