Dharma Reflections

The Buddha and the Rugby Player

I picked up The Times newspaper on Saturday, October 22, 2007. It had a rather large picture of Johnny Wilkinson, the handsome and much loved English rugby footballer, who was playing with the English team in the World Rugby Finals in Paris that afternoon.

In the previous World Rugby Finals in Australia, four years ago, Johnny scored the winning points in the very last seconds of the match against Australia. English fans went ballistic. Wilkinson joined the Realm of the Gods in sport.

In large print on the photograph on the front page, it said: “Buddha and Me. Johnny Wilkinson exclusive. I had to buy a copy of the paper. …

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Science and the Mind of the Scientist

James Watson, the 79 year-old American, the winner of the Nobel Prize for his part in the establishing the model of the molecular structure of DNA, said last month in a newspaper interview:


“All our social policies are based on the fact that their (African) intelligence is the same as ours – whereas all the testing says not really.”


He said there was a natural desire that all human beings should be equal but “people who have to deal with black employees find this is not true.”

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An Olive Grove in Devon

One of the signals of the impact of global warming is the decision of a Devon farmer to plant olive groves on his land.


There is a certain poignancy in all this. Palestinians especially love dearly their olive groves – taken care of in the same family for centuries upon centuries – a rural culture under threat from the occupation.


Mark Dacano, who runs Otter Farm at Honiton in Devon, England, about an hour or so drive from Totnes, says that food grown in the hot climate of the Mediterranean has a real chance to grow in Devon in the west country of England. As the winter frosts get lighter and lighter, he sees the potential for olive groves, almonds and apricots. …

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Three Monks Come to Stay

In September, I had the privilege of three Buddhist monks staying with me for about four days at my home, here in Totnes, Devon, England. Venerable Phap Son (Brother Michael), an abbot in a monastery in France of the much beloved Thich Nhat Hanh, the 81 year old Vietnamese monk, teacher and prolific Buddhist author, came here with two monks, Venerable Phap Due and Venerable Duc Tang.


It was a sheer delight to be with them. All three exuded a depth of mindfulness and kindness that exemplifies the teachings of their teacher, known as Thay. …

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The Dharma of Non-Duality

The other week, Radha, who teaches the Dharma Facilitators Programme in Oz, and I were talking on the phone about non-duality. She has a great love of the exploration and teaching of the non-dual. It is something we both share. I know she has given many years to this inquiry.


The Buddha, himself, never usd the term non-duality (advaita) in 5000 Pali suttas of his teachings.

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