Friday, 5 July 2013

Unitarian Universalists - America's hidden Buddhists

From Monkey Mind

"... some ten to fifteen percent of UUs, something in the neighborhood of twenty to thirty thousand people, self-identify as Buddhist, or, at least, significantly influenced by Buddhism. One could argue with some truth that the Unitarian Universalist Association is among the largest of convert Buddhist organizations in the West. And yet this is barely noticed by those who write about Buddhism come west.

So, this book is a welcome and rather overdue addition to the literature of the Dharma come west.

There are deeply moving articles, confessional and reflective.
The range of the articles is reflective of the range of Buddhist thinking and practice among Unitarian Universalists. I felt particular connections to the articles by Catherine Senghas, Alex Holt, Kat Lieu, & Thandeka.
But, the most important contribution, I feel, is from Jeff Wilson. Jeff is a birthright UU, and continues to attend UU worship services. He is also an academic specializing in Buddhism. And, he is an ordained Shin Buddhist priest. 

His “A Brief History of Unitarian Universalist Buddhism” examines the meeting, the challenge, and the mutual transformation of Japanese Buddhism and American liberal religion. I hope this article will be expanded into a book length study. It is very important..."    Full article

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The Future of Buddhism in the West

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