Saturday, July 25, 2009

Religious beliefs can coexist

One of my Twitter pals turned me on to an interesting article about the intersection between eastern and western paths and how they can be held together without conflict. The author points out how each can strengthen one's experience of the other. "This path isn’t for everyone. But if Eastern traditions and practices can deepen our Western faith, that seems like something to encourage rather than condemn."

The editor of Tricycle wrote a comment about this article:
I was surprised to find that people do not know that many Christians have taken up Buddhist practice. Meditation is a useful tool for those wishing to look more deeply into their own traditions. Father Robert Kennedy, for instance, earned the Zen honorific "roshi" while remaining a Catholic.

From where I sit, this is obvious, but I live in New York and publish a Buddhist magazine. We've found it illuminating to interview Christians who have an affinity for Buddhist practice, among them scholar Elaine Pagels, sociologist Robert Bellah (UC Berkeley) and Anglican priest Don Cupitt (Cambridge). Not one of them is Buddhist but all are sympathetic to—and some have engaged in—Buddhist meditation. One of our editors, Clark Strand, teaches "koans of the Bible" and has recently written a book called "How to Believe in God." Clark is both a Christian and a Buddhist and this does not appear strange to most of us.

Many thanks again,

James Shaheen
Editor & Publisher
Tricycle: The Buddhist Review
All of this is much in the same flavor as the urge behind Luminous Mind, for people to find benefit to their spiritual experience, no matter what their background affiliation may be. We all have this light inside, whatever we may choose to call it. Let's make it burn brightly.

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