Listener questions: about us

And we’re back! After a long winter’s break, the DharmaRealm podcast launches its second year “on the air,” so to speak. Prompted by a listener question about why Buddhism “works” for us, we talk about how we each came to discover Buddhism and Shin Buddhism in particular. Harry talks about his experiences growing up in

Listener questions: practice

In our first “listener response” episode, we tackle the question of how to practice Shin Buddhism (or any kind of Buddhism) if you don’t live near a community. Our take on the issue begins, appropriately enough, on the Internet and how the Web can be a great source of information. But, of course, the Web

Suffering: part two

We return to the topic of suffering and start off with the many nuanced meanings of the term. We get into some deep Abhidharma stuff and talk about how all dharmas are marked with impermanence and early Buddhist conceptions of suffering and the nature of samsara. This leads us to a nice little conversation about the relationship between samsara and nirvana which eventually leads us to hearty debate about “basic Buddhism” and what Shinran really knew. We wrap it all up with an insightful commentary on the trap of attachments that cause suffering.

Karma: part two

In the second installment of our conversation on karma, we start with a critique of Sharon Stone’s comments on karma, the Chinese government, and earthquakes, exploring the problems with her essentialist claims. We don’t linger there long, though, and wander off to discuss good versus evil karma and whether or not those who do intentionally

the Buddha: part two

Our second conversation on the Buddha, and what “the Buddha” means, we begin by talking about the Buddha in a specifically Pure Land Buddhist context. In particular we talk about Shinran’s take on the Buddha, Dharmakara, and Amida. Shin Buddhist thought is both a part of Mahayana thought and somehow separate. We explore some of

American Buddhism: part one

In our conversation today, we discuss the difficulty of talking about the large, diverse set of practice traditions collectively known as “American Buddhism.” How can you talk meaningfully about such a wide array of Buddhist communities, beliefs, and practices? And how do we engage non-Buddhists and those new on the path who may have their