The USA appears turning into a Buddhist kingdom. superstar converts, the recognition of the Dalai Lama, motifs in well known video clips, and mala beads on the mall point out an expanding inculcation of Buddhism into the yank cognizance, whether a comparatively small percent of the inhabitants really describe themselves as Buddhists. This booklet seems to be past the trendier manifestations of Buddhism in the United States to examine notably American Buddhist methods of life—ways of perceiving and knowing. John Whalen-Bridge and Gary Storhoff have geared up this distinct assortment based on the Buddhist idea of the 3 Jewels: the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha.
The Buddha part discusses the 2 key lecturers who popularized Buddhism in the USA: Alan Watts and D. T. Suzuki and the actual varieties of spirituality they proclaimed. The Dharma part offers with how Buddhism can enlighten present public debates and a attention of our nationwide earlier with explorations of bioethics, abortion, end-of-life judgements, and awareness in overdue capitalism. the ultimate part at the Sangha, or neighborhood of believers, discusses how Buddhist groups either formal and casual have affected American society with chapters on relatives lifestyles, Nisei Buddhists, homosexual liberation, and Zen gardens.
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Extra info for American Buddhism as a Way of Life
Watts’s nondualist vision of the spiritual path was vividly expressed, cogently developed, and adhered to with remarkable persistence throughout his career. That his life and thought were frequently “wayward” in many respects may be taken as simply the hazard inherent in his cardinal strength: his stubborn but good-humored refusal to allow any tradition to distract him from his own central insight. ”73 This may overstate the case. Surely, a Buddhism that resists the pun out of hand is a Buddhism that has lost its essential suppleness, not to say its soul.
Prebish, Luminous Passage: The Practice and Study of Buddhism in America (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999), 13. For attempts to turn the title of his autobiography against him, see Dale S. Wright, Philosophical Meditations on Zen Buddhism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998), 127; and Louis Nordstrom and Richard Pilgrim, “The Wayward Mysticism of Alan Watts,” Philosophy East and West 33:3 (1980): 382. 6. For example, The Way of Zen presents a kind of overview of the history and cultural backgrounds of Zen.
These images were used by Watts to explicate, respectively, the nature of reality, the fundamental problem of human consciousness, and the life made possible by its solution. The ﬁrst and most important term in Watts’s exposition of nondualism is the ﬁeld. Watts found support for a nondual account of the human condition in several mid-twentieth-century intellectual movements. These included gestalt psychology, general systems theory, cybernetics, and ecology. What is common to these movements is the idea that there is no subject or unit of analysis that can be understood apart from its external relations, because in any given system the subject and its environment are mutually deﬁned.