Tea House

Daily Perspectives and Stories on Buddhist Trends, People, and Ideas

Month: April 2016

“Saving Mes Aynak” film screening in Hong Kong!

Buddhistdoor and The Centre of Buddhist Studies at The University of Hong Kong co-hosted a film screening of the film “Saving Mes Aynak” on 23 April, Saturday evening. The evening was an enjoyable mix of documentary, a Skype Q&A with the director, Brent Huffman, and lively discussion about the problems of conservation of Buddhist sites and artifacts in Afghanistan.

See more at www.buddhistdoor.net!

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Ani Choying Drolma’s Arya Tara School of Dancing Nuns

LiAnne Hunt

IMG_1328

In 1998, on my first pilgrimage to Nepal, I met Ani Choying Drolma. She had just come out with the Cho CD with Steve Tibbetts. I was a long-time fan of Tibbetts’s music, owning several of his eclectic Jazz fusion albums on vinyl. As a Vajrayana practitioner, the blending of Steve’s music and Ani Choying’s voice transported me to the pure realms as I listened to those recordings continuously for months.

I don’t remember how I met Ani, other than it was the day before my departure and we spent an afternoon deep in conversation. We were contemporaries in our late 20’s and like many women, including the fully enlightened dakini Yeshe Tsogyal, had personal histories of trauma and abuse.

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Venice of the East: The Beautiful Ruins of Ayutthaya

Raymond Lam

IMG_20160304_121719Ayutthaya is a city situated at the heart of Thailand’s maritime and overland history. Its main attraction, Ayutthaya Historical Park, boasts a period of spiritual piety and medieval might dating back to 1351. It has seen Hindu-Buddhist interaction, Chinese and Japanese trade, economic and political cooperation with the Portuguese, French, English, and Dutch East India Companies, and wars with neighboring kingdoms—one of which led to the kingdom’s destruction at the hands of Burma in 1767.

Like so many littoral cities whose prosperity and influence depended on the coastline or river (for Ayutthaya, it was the Chao Phraya River), trade and multiculturalism were the hallmarks of the kingdom, much like Venice, Boston, and other cities built on the commerce of the waves. I visited some sites at the Historical Park on 4 March. The ruins are a majestic, evocative blend of multicultural influences, from Chinese and classical Indian to Khmer influences. The history behind these ruins tells the story of a kingdom shaped and defended by powerful Buddhist monarchs.

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Compassion and Wisdom

Sherri Maxwell

Infinity symbols in flat icons, vector

Infinity symbols in flat icons, vector

I’ve been lucky to experience moments in life that I learn from every time I revisit them. One moment in particular keeps me learning still and helps me understand compassion and its relationship with wisdom.

It started off with the intention of giving someone a bottle of water because I thought they might be thirsty, a simple intention . . . or so I thought.

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