Is Giving Badges to Boy Scouts Right or Is Mock Meat Right?

Of late, couple of folks asked me about eating mock meat and all. Some friends did ask me about it as well in the past, and come to think about it, this is a question that had been asked, since perhaps the start of mock meat itself! It seem contradictory to actually advocate vegetarianism on one hand and on the other hand, fabricate realistic mock meat to satisfy one’s taste buds. Why should one do this? Why can’t we be real to ourselves and just eat meat or vegetables depending on our inclinations? Can there be a middle-ground? Read More …

Putting One’s Money Where One’s Mouth Is

Putting money where one’s mouth is basically means showing due support for what we advocate. Also interpreted as “stop
giving lip service and taking some real actions.”

Yesterday, Puay Khim commented to me that there is an interesting debate going on in some online forum about how it is wasteful or pointless or both to have a stupa cast in gold. The theme here is that Buddhism should focus on its teachings and not so much on devotional aspects that it becomes the main focus. Such views are commonly upheld by a strata of Buddhists who are supposedly the intellects. They are inclined towards Buddhism because of its teachings and see little value in devotional practises like chanting, prostrations or having Buddha statues or stupas built. Read More …

Amicable Conflict or My Longest Wait for a Transport That Never Came

So today I was invited to Buddha Dhamma Mandala Society by Ven. S. Dhammika for a book launch. The book is interesting, and so is the author and the introduction of him given by Ven. Dhammika, but this blog entry is not about that. It’s about the seemingly impeccable ability for things to mess up whenever I’m visiting BDMS or Ven. Dhammika.

In this episode of Amicable Conflict, we look at how a simple affair of arranging for transport for a venerable (me in this case) to a place to attend a book launch can end up in a misunderstanding and ultimately a delayed book launch. And oh, did I mention an unhappy upassaka who refused to give transport thereafter “because he had to send in the car for servicing the next day”.

If this interest you, read on. Read More …

Exercises for This Vesak (*Updated 18 June 2007*)

Below is a series of exercises that I gave to my students in the SBF English Dharma classes. I thought it would be interesting for us to do something this Vesak.

Take a look. Let me know what you think.

Exercises for this Vesak

  1. Writeup: Why have I not taken the refuge and/or 5 precepts?
  2. Daily reflections (*Updated* 18 June 2007)
  3. Dana for the day!
  4. Spending time with our parents

Details after the jump.

Read More …

News: Upcoming Talks and Events

In-Brief

  1. The significance of Vesak Day @ 25 May 2007 (Private talk, Maris Stella High School)
  2. Million Lotus Celebrations @25 ~ 26 May 2007 (Public, Ngee Ann City)
  3. NTU Buddhist Society Alumni Vesak Celebration @ 27 May 2007 (Alumnus & friends, Venue TBC)
  4. Dharma talk for Little India Vesak Celebration @ 29 May 2007 (Public, See below for venue)
  5. Meditation Practice @ 31 May 2007 (Public, Kong Meng San Phor Kark See Monastery)

Details after the jump …
Read More …

OT: British History Timeline

OT stands for Off Topic, and in this series, we take a look at a BBC web site showing a very impressive view of the British History Timeline.

I’m not exactly a fan of BBC or the British folks, but hey, always good to have some general knowledge. Last I check, it’s good for small talk, party conversation and the Bodhisattva Path. ;)Enjoi!

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/interactive/timelines/british/index.shtml