Howardism Musings from my Awakening Dementia
My collected thoughts flamed by hubris
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From an old plum tree
A mistletoe is blooming--
Blossoming plum.

—Bashô from The Knapsack Notebook

Thoughts on Buddhism

Buddhism has intrigued me for many years. I'm especially fond of the new American Buddhist movement and the philosophy that surrounds it. The Buddhism that the Buddha taught was not a religion or a culture (he simply called it medicine for the illness of life). However, like all good philosophies that have any endurance, it got integrated into various cultures to the point where you can't see the philosophy for all the trappings.

Thankfully the superstitious trappings are often left behind in the old country when it was brought over here, and the current crop of Buddhist teachers emphasize the practical and healing aspects and don't insist that you believe in reincarnation and whatnot.

My two favorite books on this subject are:

  • Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind, by Shrunyu Suzuki
  • Buddhism Without Beliefs, by Stephen Batchelor

I'm in the process of updating my "Buddhist Thoughts", so if you are interested in reading more, please see my old website.

Fine Art of Doing Nothing
A quote from one of my favorite Zen writers, D. T. Suzuki ... on the Fine Art of Doing Nothing.

The Poetry of Stonehouse
Selected poems (and my musings) from "The Zen Works of Stonehouse" (Translated by Red Pine).

Quotes from Zen Mind, Beginner's Mind
Selections and thoughts from a book by Shunryu Suzuki.

A long thought train on the concept of being one with the natural world and with each other.

Can You Be Happy?
Does ordinary life interest you? Should it?