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Friday, February 05, 2010

The FWBO and the 'New Monasticism'

Munisha, Director of ClearVision - the FWBO's audio-visual centre - writes to say:

"I was on the BBC Radio Four programme 'Beyond Belief' on Monday, in a programme looking at something called The New Monasticism.

"This is a movement within modern Christianity to set up residential quasi-monastic communities, very much like those we are used to in the FWBO.

"I wasn't very happy with the way it went in the studio but it's been well edited and I think the result is pretty good. Judge for yourself if you wish; listen to it online here" - it'll be available to listen to until Sunday".

Community living seems to be somewhat out of fashion in the FWBO these days, but there are still over 40 residential communities listed in the official FWBO Address List, mostly single-sex ie just men or just women in residence.

Another exploration of FWBO experience in this area can be found in 'Living Together', by Sanghadevi - you'll find this reviewed on the Windhorse Publications website.

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Thursday, March 05, 2009

Sarvananda on the radio

This month sees two radio plays by Sarvananda, a Scottish Order Member and writer.

Both have been broadcast by the BBC, where he goes by his old name of Alastair Jessiman.

Available on-line now is his third play about Thomas Soutar, a psychic who uses his gifts to help the police. In this latest play he is called in to investigate the disappearance of a gifted and beautiful music student; his investigation uncovers a number of uncomfortable truths – not least for Thomas himself who falls under the missing girl's spell.

‘The Sensitive: A possession’ is the Afternoon Play on BBC Radio4, and can be heard here:

Coming up later in March is "Boxer and Doberman", also by Sarvananda and this time a 4-part comedy series broadcast on DAB and BBC Digital Radio 7. Each episode will be broadcast three times according to the following schedule;

• Episode one: Headless in Glasgow
» Monday 23rd March 2009: 9am - 9.30am, 8pm - 8.30pm; Tue 24th March: 1 - 1.30pm.
• Episode two - the Killings in Kirkibrae
» Tue 24th March: 9am - 9.30am, 8pm - 8.30pm; Wed 25th March 1 - 1.30pm.
• Episode three - the Big Cheese
» Wed 25th March: 9am - 9.30am, 8pm - 8.30pm; Thu 26th March 1 - 1.30pm.
• Episode four - the Seat of Evil
» Thu 26th March: 9am - 9.30am, 8pm - 8.30pm; Fri 27th March 1 - 1.30pm.


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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Taraloka on the radio

Maitrimala, Catering Manager at the FWBO’s Taraloka retreat centre, was interviewed this week by BBC radio. You can listen to her here -
(to listen you’ll need Realplayer installed on your computer; it can be downloaded for free here if necessary).

Simply click to play and then drag the time bar to 42 minutes.

The interviewer' s curiosity seems to have been prompted by news that Delia Smith, the famous chef, needs an hour of silence a day, which she describes as “time to be, just to be still”, with Delia apparently advising her followers to time this period with a kitchen timer!

Maitrimala begins by describing the view from her bedroom window, then life at Taraloka more generally – and then what it might be like to go on a retreat there. She assuages the interviewer’s anxiety about periods of silence by making it quite clear that it’s ok to laugh while on a retreat!

The program is on the BBC’s 'Mornings with Joanne Malin' program, described as “the radio version of the very best woman's magazine”.

There's pictures of the rest of the Taraloka community on their website here.

Tomorrow we bring news of another FWBO radio appearance, this time a new radio play by Sarvananda, just aired on BBC Radio 4.

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Events in Mumbai: reflections by Vishvapani

“Compassion requires the courage to face suffering steadily with an open, kindly heart. That brings understanding, and that rouses us to action. The intended product of terrorism, by contrast, is 'terror'. Declaring a 'war' on that terror won't show the way out of cycles of violence and reprisal. We can only find a path beyond terror by facing it directly.”

To all afflicted by suffering we would add, in the words of Shantideva –

“May all sentient beings possess happiness
And the causes of happiness;
May they be separated from suffering,
And the causes of suffering;

May they never be separated
From the happiness that knows no suffering;
May they abide in equanimity,
Free from attachment and aversion”.

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

Kavyasiddhi writes to say -

“Just to let you know I'm writing and recording another set of five 'Pause for Thoughts' on BBC Radio 2 for the week of Wesak.

“They'll be broadcast on the nights of Monday May 19 - Friday May 23rd at 1.30 and 3.30am, in the Night Time slot of the Janice Long Show.

“So if you want to hear two-minute Dharma thoughts aimed at non-Buddhist shift workers and insomniacs, tune in to Radio 2 on Monday-Friday a.m. (that's very, very early a.m!)

“Hope you're well, Kavyasiddhi”

If you don't get up in time you can listen to her again by clicking here and then selecting the day of the week.

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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Sarvananda and Vishvapani on the radio - drama, and Tibet...

Sarvananda’s next radio play is on Radio 4 shortly, on Thursday 27th March at 2.15pm to be precise. It’s titled ‘The death of Magnus Sweet’ and is advertised there as being by Alastair Jessiman, Sarvananda’s non-Buddhist name.

He says, “If you've a chance to publicise it on the News site, that would be great...”

Check the details on the BBC website – it sounds intriguing: At a remote Scottish public school in the late 1960s, two boys invent a fictitious fellow classmate. But they face a dilemma when everyone, even the headmaster, starts to believe that Magnus Sweet exists…

Vishvapani continues to be a regular guest on Radio 4’s ‘Thought for the Day’, most recently speaking about the situation in Tibet. You can find audio and text versions of his pieces on the BBC website here.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Glasgow's Buddhist Stress-Busting Make-Overs - and Stupid Cupid day...

The Glasgow Buddhist Centre have launched a new range of courses for the new year – ranging from a “Buddhist Stress-Busting Make-Over” to their new “Stupid Cupid” day retreat – or should that be day-long treat?

They’ve advertised them with characteristic pizzazz; we found this report in a local Scottish newspaper: “If the stresses and strains of the festive season have left you feeling frazzled or your relationship with your nearest and dearest a bit frayed around the edges, make a new start in 2008 with the stress-busting techniques taught at the Glasgow Buddhist Centre. You can stretch your body and soothe your mind at the same time with a six week yoga and meditation course starting on Wednesday 9th January or delve straight into the clearer states of mind brought about by the two meditation practices taught by experienced practitioners on Tuesday evenings starting from the 22nd January. To discover how the teachings of the Buddha can help us deal with modern life, come along on Wednesdays from 23rd January.

And if your relationship needs a rethink before Valentine’s Day, book yourself onto the Stupid Cupid Day on Sunday 3rd February and find out how you can stop getting in the way of romance".

The report goes on to point out that the Stupid Cupid day will be co-led by Nagaraja, well-known for being he who gives the Buddhist perspective on the Pause for Thought slot on Terry Wogan’s BBC Radio Two show - Friday mornings at 9.15am UK time.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

More Buddhists on the radio...

Kavyasiddhi is presenting five night-time Pause for Thoughts which will go out on BBC Radio 2 this week Monday – Friday, beginning November 26th.

She says "If anyone wants to hear my latest two minute dharma talks for non-Buddhist shift workers & insomniacs, I invite you to tune to the Janice Long Show at 1.30 and 3.30am - yes, that is the middle of the night, ie very, very early a.m!"

If you don't get up in time you can listen to her again by clicking here and then selecting the day of the week.

Vishvapani is doing BBC Radio 4’s ‘Thought for the Day’ on the Tuesday 27th November, and the following two Tuesdays ie Dec 4 & 11 , all
at 7.50 am. Listen to him again here.

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Buddhists on the Radio...

Sarvananda has for many years practiced as a playwright. On Wednesday 28 November between 2.15-3.00pm BBC Radio 4 will be broadcasting his latest play, " The Sensitive: the Hanged Man".

This is a sequel to his 'The Sensitive', also broadcast on Radio 4, where it was described as an 'offbeat thriller', in which police call in a psychic to help find a missing woman. Thomas Soutar is adept at solving crimes - but is his extraordinary gift a blessing or a curse?

Sarvananda has been developing his own website, still very much under construction but available to browse here.

On Saturday December 8th between 9-12am, Sunday 9th 1-4pm, and Tuesday 11th 1-4am (all UK time), Lokabandhu will be on the internet-only Glastonbury Radio discussing the progress of the Transition Town initiative in his home town of Glastonbury.

Transition Towns are a network of communities of all sizes, across the UK and beyond, that are looking the BIG questions of Peak Oil and Climate Change squarely in the eye with the intention of discovering and implementing ways to manage the coming changes including the necessary shift away from fossil fuels. He will be apprearing with Patrick Whitefield, Glastonbury resident and acclaimed permaculture teacher and author, and Linda Hull, a Glastonbury town Councillor.

Glastonbury Radio is an internet radio station but available to all with broadband.

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Tuesday, July 24, 2007

A play, 'Excerpt from a dog's ear', by Kavyasiddhi from Manchester was on BBC Radio Four last Thursday. Its available for the next two days only via their 'Listen Again' service for the next two days here - click Thursday.

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Thursday, July 19, 2007

Buddhist parenting - interview on the BBC

The BBC's flagship program 'Woman's Hour' has recorded and aired a program featuring an interview with Karunagita, author of 'A Path for Parents'. Click here to listen to the program, you will need Realplayer which can be downloaded for free here.

The BBC's blurb asks "How difficult is it to bring up children in a religious tradition, in an age where we increasingly talk about the importance of giving them the opportunity to make their own decisions? Sara Burns, author of ‘A Path for Parents’ and Carol Clewlow, author of 'Keeping the Faith', join Miriam to discuss the pleasures and pitfalls of handing down your spiritual beliefs. Sara is known in the Order as Karunagita, while Carol was raised in the 'Plymouth Bretheren'.

‘A Path for Parents’ by Sarah Burns is published by Windhorse Publications £11.99 ISBN 9781899579709

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Monday, June 11, 2007

Two regular guests on BBC Radio...

FWBO News has come to learn that two members of the Western Buddhist Order are regular guests on BBC Radio.

Nagaraja from the Glasgow Buddhist Centre is a long-standing regular on the ‘Pause for Thought’ slot on the Terry Wogan show. You can listen to his latest reflections (arising from his 46th birthday), broadcast this week, by clicking
here for the transcript or here for the audio.

You can hear Vishvapani, also a regular contributor, on Radio 4’s ‘Thought for the Day’, part of the peak-time ‘Today’ program, by clicking here for the last episode, or here for the archives.

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