November 24, 2014

You are here: Home Features Alternate Takes

Alternate Takes

Prev Next Page:

Spirits and Ghosts

by Fa Lian Shakya, Greece

Published Aug 15, 2009

In the span of a few seconds, or maybe hours, time was no more what it seemed to be. Suddenly a great many things to see appeared: shapes, bright and dark ethereal masses, spirits, ghosts and their shades . . . and then beams of light turning gold in the midst of which... Read more

Nowhere-attaching and Zen

by Fa Gong

Published Jan 08, 2009

In the past few years, I read many times the Chinese version of both the Vajra Prajna Paramita Sutra and The Sixth Patriarch’s Platform Sutra. Although I understood the literal meaning of “One should have a true mind which is nowhere attached,” I could not comprehend this dictum in its deeper sense. I... Read more


by Yao Xiang - Bulgaria

Published Jan 08, 2009

Dear Friends, The gift of Faith is like a rare and precious jewel; but strangely, it is a gift that often remains hidden from the one who possesses it. Like Aladdin's treasure, it lies hidden behind a cave's strong doors until, in some unexpected moment, a magic sound - monks chanting... Read more

Everyday Challenges

by Yao Xiang - Bulgarian

Published Jan 08, 2009

Dedicated to Grand Master Jy Din Shakya,founder of the Zen Buddhist Order of Hsu Yun Dear Friends, Let’s review an episode in the life of the Indian Buddhist Master Dipankara. Some monks in Tibet had invited Dipankara to come to their monastery to preach the Dharma. The great master complied, bringing with him... Read more

Uncle's Last Trip

by Yao Feng- Greece

Published Jan 08, 2009

An icy January morning, 6 a.m. It is not my habit to be awake at this hour, in this season, but I have an appointment to keep. Kilometers away from here lies the village where I will bid farewell to my mother's brother. Ninety-one years old, and he still has... Read more

After the Rain

by Fa Che

Published Jan 08, 2009

A monk once asked master Chao-chou: "Does a dog have Buddha-nature or not? Chao-chou said, "Mu" I was awakened by a cry in the darkness before any light of morning and after a night of thunderous tropical rainfall. From the streetlights I could see inches of water blanket the streets and yards... Read more

Nobody's Fool

by Bob Bradshaw

Published Jan 02, 2009

She was nobody's fool, but you would never have known it, unless you got to know her. Her name isn't important. She didn't think it was important. When it came up, she always gave it like it was statistical information. It just happened to be her name. If you needed it,... Read more

Student Striver

by Zheng Dao (Fogueira)

Published Jan 02, 2009

Once upon a time, at this very moment here and now, while reading the wonderful pieces by my teachers on this site, I wondered, "What could I, a mere student, do to contribute?" How could this particular follower of Guan Yin respond to a few of the cries of the... Read more

Free Expense

by Fa Tien

Published Jan 02, 2009

Today I would like to discuss: The high price of Free Baseball Tickets, Conflict of Interest, Cognitive Dissonance and The Simple Life. Free Baseball Tickets The deal was agreed to. The salesmen mentioned that their company had tickets to a game in the new baseball stadium; tickets that often went unclaimed. They... Read more

Zen and the art of Windsurfing

by Fa Tien

Published Dec 30, 2008

Chalice Lighting.Before I joined this church,I worshipped every Sundayand often on Wednesdayand sometimes Friday and Saturdayworshipped in the wilderness that lies just offshore,worshipped on the water,worshipped in God's cathedral,practicing the ritualof Windsurfing. Children's Story If you are a child or think you are a child please look at the bottom of your... Read more

The Box

by Sifu Fa Jue

Published Dec 30, 2008

Father opens the front door and walks into the entrybox. As he steps inside, he trips over daughter’s doll. "I thought I told her to pick up her toys," he mutters to himself. Walking into the livingbox he notices son sitting on the floor watching TV. All around are toys and... Read more

Searching for Budo

by Sifu Fa Jue

Published Dec 30, 2008

Many Dojos claim to be Budo schools, and many Sensei to be Budoka; but much separates claim from actuality. Between the two must come the necessary developmental steps, that natural progression of skill and ethics, which leads to this highest level of martial training. If ANY element is missing from... Read more

What is Budo?

by Sifu Fa Jue

Published Dec 30, 2008

Budo is an art of war the aim of which is maintaining peace. It is the way of a warrior who believes that the best offense is a good defense. Nations, too, arm themselves and maintain a state of military readiness, so as to discourage hostile countries from even thinking... Read more

Kata and Enlightenment

by Chadan

Published Dec 29, 2008

In his second book, Yamakura Shihan tells us that the ultimate source of GoJu Ryu is Shorin-Ji Ryu. At first blush it would appear that this is a reference to the Shorin systems native to Okinawa. However, "Shorin-Ji Ryu" is not to be confused with "Shorin Ryu." Shorin-Ji Ryu is... Read more

The Next Step

by Yao Lian

Published Dec 29, 2008

Structures built to last for generations have crumbled in moments. Countless lives lost and families irrevocably altered in less time than it takes to park a car. What kind of compassionate response can we possibly make? The obvious things like working at the scene or donating our fortunes are beyond most... Read more

The Buddha Dharma for Fighting Addictions

by Hin Lik of the Western Chan Fellowship

Published Dec 29, 2008

How appropriate the Buddha's message is to those of us with addictions - especially alcohol addictions! The Four Noble Truths explain our dilemma quite clearly and the fourth, the Eightfold Path, gives us the perfect map to help us out of our burning house. The eight "Right Actions" Buddha said... Read more

Five four three two one

by Fa Liang

Published Aug 29, 2007

Either sit upright with eyes closed or lay down with eyes closed. Breathe slowly - in through the nose, out through the mouth. Think to yourself: I hear 5 things. Then identify each of the five things. They don't have to be anything significant or loud. There is no emotional attachment to... Read more

Who Am I? Reflections on Chan's Path

by Fa Gong

Published Mar 20, 2006

Evolution   Religion's ubiquitous "ism's" often leave me wondering about their relation to spiritual growth. I'm reminded of a famous Chan hua-toa, "If you don't really exist, why am I trying to save you?". Why, for example, if Buddhism and Taoism are merely ways of living in harmony with nature, and nature... Read more

Tsunami Wake: Harbor Wave Kids

by Fa Che

Published Jan 28, 2005

Hardships still come One upon the otherEnabling me to see If my mind truly hasCast off the world, or not. -- Myocho Shuho * Fame is not experienced by most of us. Famous persons seem to be from another dimension, from another land, from somewhere where giants and wonders abound. Fame destroys... Read more

Tsunami Moon Reflections on being human

by Fa Che

Published Dec 29, 2004

Bamboo shadows sweep the stairs,  Yet not a mote of dust is stirred; Moonbeams pierce to the bottom of the pool,  Yet in the water not a trace remains.  --from 'The Zenrinkushu What Karma possibly exists on a national, or international level, among so many various nationalities, races, classes that would be... Read more

The Lottery Ticket

by Yao Feng - Greece

Published Sep 01, 2004

Once a week, usually on Tuesday, I drive down to Loutraki to buy supplies. It is the nearest small city in the area, about 16 kilometers from where I live. It's not a big town, but it's pretty there by the sea. It has curative waters, casino, shops and a... Read more