The USA appears turning into a Buddhist kingdom. megastar converts, the recognition of the Dalai Lama, motifs in renowned video clips, and mala beads on the mall point out an expanding inculcation of Buddhism into the yankee awareness, whether a comparatively small percent of the inhabitants truly describe themselves as Buddhists. This e-book appears to be like past the trendier manifestations of Buddhism in the US to examine enormously American Buddhist methods of life—ways of perceiving and realizing. John Whalen-Bridge and Gary Storhoff have equipped this specified assortment in response to the Buddhist thought of the 3 Jewels: the Buddha, the Dharma, and the Sangha.

The Buddha part discusses the 2 key academics who popularized Buddhism in the United States: Alan Watts and D. T. Suzuki and the actual sorts of spirituality they proclaimed. The Dharma part offers with how Buddhism can enlighten present public debates and a attention of our nationwide prior with explorations of bioethics, abortion, end-of-life judgements, and cognizance in overdue capitalism. the ultimate part at the Sangha, or neighborhood of believers, discusses how Buddhist groups either formal and casual have affected American society with chapters on kinfolk existence, Nisei Buddhists, homosexual liberation, and Zen gardens.

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This was also the book in which Watts began to utilize insights from some of the formative intellectual movements of the postwar era: especially the newly minted “cybernetics” of Norbert Weiner,29 general systems theory, and gestalt psychology. These, as we shall see, became the backbone of his mature thought. During his stay in rural New York, Watts reestablished contact with Fredric Spiegelberg, then teaching at Stanford, who fortuitously offered Watts a job with the unaccredited school he was just then organizing in San Francisco, the American Academy of Asian Studies.

For example, see Alan Watts, The Way of Zen (New York: Pantheon, 1957), xii; and Alan Watts, Buddhism: The Religion of No-Religion. The Edited Transcripts, ed. Mark Watts (Boston: Tuttle Publishing, 1995), 8 and 40. 2. Alan Watts, In My Own Way: An Autobiography (New York: Vintage Books, 1973), 73. 3. Watts, In My Own Way, 252. 4. See David Loy, Nonduality: A Study in Comparative Philosophy (Amherst, NY: Humanity Books, 1998). 5. If Watts has any place at all in the field of religious studies today, it is in what might be called its negative canon.

A view of the self according to which “the line between myself and what happens to me is dissolved”37 naturally raises the question of freedom and determinism, which Watts handles rather elegantly. We are “determined,” he allows, in the sense that what we are is wholly embedded in the network of circumstances; but we are also free in the sense that what we are is of a piece with the radical contingency of the whole. ”38 If the real “I” is a function of the whole, that is, it also partakes of the strength and intelligence of the whole; it is at once the windblown leaf and the wind that blows.

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