Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation
User avatar
Anagarika
Posts: 709
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 11:25 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1006

Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby Anagarika » Fri Dec 13, 2013 9:31 pm

I get the occasional solicitation to come to the 2014 Wisdom 2.0 Conference, where speakers such as Eckhart Tolle, Facebook's Director of Engineering, Jon Kabat-Zinn, and the CEO of Zappos (internet shoe store) converge on San Francisco for a gathering of people with a seeming interest in "how technology, mindfulness, and corporate strategies intersect." http://www.wisdom2summit.com/Speakers

I'm guessing someone like Thanissaro Bhikkhu wasn't invited, as he would likely have suggested everyone put down their Android phones, their iPads, and just find the base of a tree and meditate. Bhikkhu Bodhi wasn't invited as he might have suggested they take the $700 daily conference fee charges to attendees and use the money to help eradicate hunger.

In any case, what are we to make of this incursion of so-called mindfulness into the depths of Silicon Valley? Is this the second coming of Devadatta? Is this the era of the erosion of the Dhamma into a vehicle for increasing employee productivity and profits for companies? Are there benefits to having companies, personal coaches, and inspirational speakers talking about mindfulness and meditation? Is a watered down, abused Dhamma in the west better than no Dhamma at all?

"Founders from Facebook, Twitter, eBay, Zynga and PayPal, and executives and managers from companies like Google, Microsoft, Cisco ... in conversations with experts in yoga and mindfulness."
- The New York Times

“Everywhere you turn at Wisdom 2.0, it’s like, ‘Oh my God, you’re here too?’”

~ Luke Nosek, Cofounder, PayPal

What is Wisdom? http://youtu.be/6dRyWLXcWkk


Of course, without the internet, we wouldn't have DhammaWheel, and my own currently woeful Dhamma scholarship would be abysmal if I had to depend on books found at the Barnes and Noble. Yet, once we achieve a measure of community through technology, and have the ability to be e-kalayana mitta with each other, do we encourage the Dhamma to be infected by corporatism, monetization, and as a vehicle for convincing people that more mindfulness means more productivity? Is being fully interconnected 24/7 a good thing, or are we just cultivating more poo-throwing monkeys for our minds to tangle with?

In other words, what does the Dhamma have to do with selling shoes? :shrug:

User avatar
kmath
Posts: 257
Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2013 6:44 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1001

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby kmath » Fri Dec 13, 2013 10:47 pm

Great post :thumbsup:

Didn't the Buddha say somewhere that once the Dhamma goes mainstream, that's a sign of the Dhamma's downfall? Something like that?

User avatar
cooran
Posts: 7800
Joined: Tue Jan 06, 2009 11:32 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1
Location: Queensland, Australia

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby cooran » Sat Dec 14, 2013 12:44 am

kmath wrote:Great post :thumbsup:

Didn't the Buddha say somewhere that once the Dhamma goes mainstream, that's a sign of the Dhamma's downfall? Something like that?


Mindfulness isn't something exclusive to Buddhism.

These are the signs of the decline of the Dhamma:
Dharma-ending age - Piya Tan
http://dharmafarer.org/wordpress/wp-con ... -proto.pdf

With metta,
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---

User avatar
Mkoll
Posts: 4153
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 6:55 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1006
Location: California, USA

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby Mkoll » Sat Dec 14, 2013 12:47 am

cooran wrote:Mindfulness isn't something exclusive to Buddhism.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but right mindfulness is exclusive to the Buddhadhamma.
Peace,
James

User avatar
Mkoll
Posts: 4153
Joined: Wed Dec 05, 2012 6:55 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1006
Location: California, USA

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby Mkoll » Sat Dec 14, 2013 1:12 am

BuddhaSoup wrote:Is a watered down, abused Dhamma in the west better than no Dhamma at all?

As long as they don't call it Buddhism or pretend it's Dhamma, I think it's good. Those who realize more happiness in their lives via meditating may become interested in the Buddhadhamma. Whether they conflate their movement with Buddhism or not, any educated and discerning person who needs facts straight before they speak of facts will know it is not Buddhadhamma. The wise or those aspiring to wisdom will not be fooled. The fools, well... they will do what they do.

There won't be no Dhamma in the West as long as we're around! :guns:
Peace,
James

chownah
Posts: 3016
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 6

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby chownah » Sat Dec 14, 2013 3:14 am

Remember how you learned math? You started knowing nothing but it was fun watching Sesame Street and learning the numbers. Then some kids saw that you could actually do something with those numbers.....some did not. Eventually people developed their math skills to whatever level their life led them to.....but more people learned more math skills because of the interest created by the fun and excitement of watching Sesame Street.

Everyone starts somewhere......make every point in life a starting point for someone.
chownah

User avatar
kmath
Posts: 257
Joined: Thu Mar 14, 2013 6:44 pm
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1001

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby kmath » Sat Dec 14, 2013 3:36 am

cooran wrote:
kmath wrote:Great post :thumbsup:

Didn't the Buddha say somewhere that once the Dhamma goes mainstream, that's a sign of the Dhamma's downfall? Something like that?


Mindfulness isn't something exclusive to Buddhism.

These are the signs of the decline of the Dhamma:
Dharma-ending age - Piya Tan
http://dharmafarer.org/wordpress/wp-con ... -proto.pdf

With metta,
Chris


That's what I was looking for thanks.

Btw, I didn't mean to suggest mindfulness was exclusive to Buddhism.

User avatar
Ben
Site Admin
Posts: 16345
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2008 12:49 am
Which number is larger than 1000 and less than 1002: 1001
Location: Land of the sleeping gods
Contact:

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby Ben » Sat Dec 14, 2013 3:38 am

For some people, it's an "in".
My wife teaches vipassana-based mindfulness meditation to school students and practices mindfulness-integrated cognitive therapy in her work as an educational psychologist. She is able to do that at an independent christian school. The mundane benefits of "mindfulness meditation" are being documented by an emerging body of literature in the neuro-science and allied health, education and management fields. When someone experiences the mundane benefits of mindfulness meditation it may provide an avenue to then explore the Dhamma and the supramundane benefits of practicing Dhamma.
kind regards,

Ben
Learn this from the waters:
in mountain clefts and chasms,
loud gush the streamlets,
but great rivers flow silently.

Taṃ nadīhi vijānātha:
sobbhesu padaresu ca,
saṇantā yanti kusobbhā,
tuṇhīyanti mahodadhī.

Sutta Nipata 3.725

Compassionate Hands Foundation (Buddhist aid in Myanmar) • Buddhist Global ReliefUNHCR
Buddhist Life Stories of Australia
e: ben.dhammawheel@gmail.com

User avatar
Bhikkhu Pesala
Posts: 2100
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2009 8:17 pm

Re: Wisdom 2.0: Can Dhamma and Technology Really Intersect?

Postby Bhikkhu Pesala » Sat Dec 14, 2013 7:35 am

It looks like Dhamma Soup to me. :stirthepot:
AIM WebsitePāli FontsIn This Very LifeBuddhist ChroniclesSoftware (Upasampadā: 24th June, 1979)


Return to “Open Dhamma”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests