The biggest challenge with discussing “happiness” in this culture might be finding our way back to the substance of the word itself — a substance that has been hollowed out by its uses in culture.
South Korean Poet Ko Un carries wisdom from his time as a monk.
An image of the Buddha is carved into a banyan tree at Wat Mahathat in Thailand. (photo: McKay Savage/Flickr, cc by 2.0)
The name Buddha means “awakened one.” This is the story of how a young man became the Buddha. As with all ancient tales, we can’t know what is to be taken literally and what is to be taken metaphorically. It doesn’t matter to me. I’m inspired by his story either way.
The title we’ve given this week’s show, “The ‘Happiest’ Man in the World,” is slightly tongue-in-cheek. It appeared in a British newspaper after the publication of scientific study results on Matthieu Ricard’s brain. He dismisses this label and has issued many good-natured disclaimers. We’ve revived it here, however, because of the lovely way in which Matthieu Ricard fills that phrase with a whole new range of savvy, satisfying meaning.
A Q+A with Phie Ambo on meditation, contemplative neuroscience, and what she learned while making the documentary Free the Mind on neuroscientist Richard Davidson.
Highlights of live tweets from Krista's interview with Richard Davidson.
A monk celebrates Vesak Day, the Buddha’s birthday, at the Borobudur Temple in Indonesia. (photo: Ulet Ifansasti/Getty Images)
Today is the birthday of the Buddha, born as Prince Siddhārtha Gautama in Lumbini, 150 miles from Kathmandu, Nepal. Devotees celebrate three stages of his life on this day: his birth, enlightenment after meditating under the Bodhi tree, and his passing.
I picked up Sylvia Boorstein's lovely book That's Funny, You Don't Look Buddhistyears ago and loved it. Then, three years ago, I found myself on a panel discussion with her and loved her in person.
The first Buddhist chaplaincy training program in the U.S. is featured in this beautiful short film about end of life care.
Katsuo Fujihara, 73, prays at the tomb of a dead family member at a cemetery in Kamaishi in Iwate prefecture. Still reeling 10 days after Japan’s deadliest natural disaster since 1923, the Japanese people marked shunbun no hi (vernal equinox day) on Sunday by visiting the tombs of their ancestors, cleaning them, and offering prayers and ohagi, sweet rice balls covered with red bean paste. (photo: Roslan Rahman/AFP/Getty Images)
Members of the audience were asked to write questions for her on index cards. Here's a glimpse at what was on their minds.
One of the pioneering teachers of Buddhist thought and meditation in the U.S. answers our in-house "wannabe" mindfulness practitioner's questions on techniques and focus, and the balance of new technologies with human connection.
“Buddha Moon - Buddha Stones” (photo: H. Kopp-Delaney/Flickr, licensed under Creative Commons)
Winter Solstice. The longest night of the year. The other day I was wondering what it must have been like to be one of the early humans, before there was a body of cultural and scientific knowledge built up to assure us that the light would, indeed, return as we turned the corner on this day and headed once again toward spring. It must have been terrifying to see the sun drop lower and lower in the sky each day and the night grow longer and longer without really knowing if that trajectory would reverse.
So this is a dark time — not only astronomically but also the world feels dark right now.
Read highlights of Krista's interview with mention of cultivation of mind, ethical motivation, and consciousness and more.
On October 17, 2010, Krista led a lively conversation with four dynamic religious leaders: the His Holiness the XIV Dalai Lama, Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Rev. Dr. Katharine Jefferts Schori, and Seyyed Hossein Nasr on "Understanding and Promoting Happiness in Today's Society."
This video is a compassion meditation of sorts, featuring the words and voice of one of our most enduring guests, Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh.