Jewish Buddhism

An open and inclusive investigation into Buddhism and spiritual cultivation

Re: Jewish Buddhism

Postby christopher::: » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:08 am

Just found this...



This film examines the dramatic surge of interest among American Jews in the spiritual teachings of Buddhism. Jews, who make up 2% of the population, account for some 30% of non-Asian American Buddhists. Many of them are among the leading expositors and scholars of Buddhism in America. In practice, traditional Jewish ritual and liturgy are being modified in synagogues and among individuals seeking to incorporate the teachings of Buddhism into their spiritual lives.

Jews and Buddhism is the first film to interrogate in depth the reasons for this phenomenon, explore it in the context of 20th century Jewish-American life, and consider its impact on contemporary Jewish thought and practice. This documentary, named "...one of the outstanding documentaries of 1999." by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, is narrated by Sharon Stone, and includes rare footage of the Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of Tibet, as well as David Ben Gurion, Alan Ginsberg, Sylvia Boorstein, Rabbi Alan Lew, and many others. The film has appeared on PBS and the History channel as well as over 50 film festivals worldwide. In addition, it is in widespread educational distribution.
"As Buddhists, we should aim to develop relationships that are not predominated by grasping and clinging. Our relationships should be characterised by the brahmaviharas of metta (loving kindness), mudita (sympathetic joy), karuna (compassion), and upekkha (equanimity)."
~post by Ben, Jul 02, 2009
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Re: Jewish Buddhism

Postby Sanghamitta » Wed Dec 01, 2010 10:33 am

I like Sharon Stones pronounciation..."the Deli Lama".
I get a mental picture of him buying lox and bagels.... :smile:
Reb Zalman became a close friend of Thomas Merton.
Here in Europe a lot of Jewish people are discovering their Jewish heritage via Buddhism. Probably in the USA too.
They have been sent or taken to Synagogue and did not know about the other stuff.
They then come across the Baal Shem Tov and Reb Noson et al.... the great Tzaddiks, and realise that it has been there in their own back yards all along....
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
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Re: Jewish Buddhism

Postby rowyourboat » Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:09 pm

Hi Sanghamitta

You seem to have a deeper appreciation/exposure of this issue- do you think it is possible for the kabballah-Talmud to 'communicate' with the pali canon- and if so on what topics would it do that?

with metta
With Metta

Karuna
Mudita
& Upekkha
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Re: Jewish Buddhism

Postby Sanghamitta » Wed Dec 01, 2010 4:30 pm

I think that they are both clearly defined paths. I dont think that a syncretic approach would necessarily be of benefit.
Both have acquired a wealth of experiential wisdom which has commonalities with the other, but the frameworks are very different.
Those Jewish people who have discovered the depths of their own heritage via Buddhism go one of two ways. They stay within Buddhism but with an increased respect for their culture, or they revert to a different kind of Judaism while remaining well disposed toward Buddhism.
In the sixties seventies and eighties the former response was must common. More recently a lot of people have opted for the second approach.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.
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Re: Jewish Buddhism

Postby Jason » Fri Dec 03, 2010 3:41 am

I'm not Jewish, but I remember reading God Is a Verb: Kabbalah and the Practice of Mystical Judaism years ago and really enjoying it. While not strictly Buddhist in content, the author was influenced by Buddhism before becoming immersed in Jewish mysticism.
"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" (AN 7.58).

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