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Rank #12 in Buddhism category

Religion & Spirituality
Buddhism

Tricycle Talks

Updated 1 day ago

Rank #12 in Buddhism category

Religion & Spirituality
Buddhism
Read more

Conversations with contemporary Buddhist leaders and thinkers

Read more

Conversations with contemporary Buddhist leaders and thinkers

iTunes Ratings

117 Ratings
Average Ratings
88
12
6
3
8

Fascinating Podcast

By Trike on Train - Jan 21 2014
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Fantastic! I really appreciate Tricycle's willingness to dive into tricky or tough topics.

Great talks, why cant they make more?

By discgator - Nov 07 2013
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I listened to the first 2 talks and have waited for over a month for the third. Cant wait!

iTunes Ratings

117 Ratings
Average Ratings
88
12
6
3
8

Fascinating Podcast

By Trike on Train - Jan 21 2014
Read more
Fantastic! I really appreciate Tricycle's willingness to dive into tricky or tough topics.

Great talks, why cant they make more?

By discgator - Nov 07 2013
Read more
I listened to the first 2 talks and have waited for over a month for the third. Cant wait!
Cover image of Tricycle Talks

Tricycle Talks

Latest release on May 09, 2020

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Conversations with contemporary Buddhist leaders and thinkers

Rank #1: Mark Epstein: The Task Is Being You

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The Buddha had a prescription to end suffering—the eightfold path. But can the Western tradition of psychotherapy build upon these essential steps? Here, Buddhist psychotherapist and bestselling author Epstein talks with Tricycle contributing editor Amy Gross about how the two realms of wisdom view the idea of self as both problematic and helpful. Drawing from his new book, Advice Not Given: A Guide to Getting Over Yourself, to discuss the ways meditation illuminates aspects of ourselves that we’re afraid or ashamed of, allowing us to let go of the identities that constrict us.

Jan 17 2018

48mins

Play

Rank #2: Haemin Sunim: Letting Go of the Perfect Self

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When we begin a Buddhist practice, we often set our sights on lofty spiritual goals. Yet the day-to-day problems we face can be stepping stones to deeper understanding. For Zen monk Haemin Sunim, helping regular people with low self-esteem, feelings of loss, or career failure is an integral part of his monastic duties, and a way to spread the dharma in his home country of South Korea, where Buddhism has been on the decline. 

Dubbed the “Twitter monk” after his account garnered more than 1 million followers, Haemin Sunim in 2015 founded the School of Broken Hearts in Seoul, where he offers both traditional Buddhist instruction and classes designed to help people with the painful parts of life—such as bullying, bereavement, anger management, and dating violence. His latest book, Love for Imperfect Things: How to Accept Yourself in a World Striving for Perfection, is an international best-seller.

Here, Haemin Sunim sits down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his journey from US college professor to Korean household name, and how he teaches people to let go of their ideas about perfection.

Dec 12 2019

38mins

Play

Rank #3: Mark Epstein: Buddhism and Psychotherapy

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In the debut episode of Tricycle Talks, contributing editor Amy Gross speaks with practicing psychiatrist Mark Epstein on Buddhism and psychotherapy. Epstein emphasizes that there is dukkha (suffering)in every place at every time, and that psychotherapeutic practices can help alleviate this suffering. Epstein's new book, The Trauma of Everyday Life, also explores this topic.

Apr 17 2017

39mins

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Rank #4: Koshin Paley Ellison: Waking Up from Zombieland

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So often we succumb to our narratives about the people in our lives without taking a moment to examine what’s really going on, and this mindset leaves us feeling isolated. Koshin Paley Ellison calls this state of existence “zombieland,” and says that the habits that keep us locked in our mental stories—and glued to our devices—are rooted in a deep-seated fear of awkwardness and discomfort. Koshin is a Zen chaplain and teacher and co-founder of the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care, a non-profit that offers training programs in clinical chaplaincy meditation and spiritual counseling. His recent book Wholehearted: Slow Down, Help Out, Wake Up, is a reflection on how the 16 Zen precepts can apply to life today and help us enter into compassionate relationships with ourselves and others. Here, Koshin sits down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his journey from “lone wolf” to Zen chaplain and how being with people who are dying has taught him to live a more meaningful life.

Nov 19 2019

42mins

Play

Rank #5: Guy Armstrong: What Do Buddhists Mean When They Talk About Not-Self?

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The foundational Buddhist concept of "no-self" can be a headbanger. What does it mean that our self is fundamentally empty? And if that’s true, who are we? In our latest Tricycle Talks podcast, Insight meditation teacher Guy Armstrong explains the concept to Tricycle contributing editor Amy Gross. Drawing from his book Emptiness: A Practical Guide for Meditators, he breaks down what happens when we stop constructing a sense of “I, me, mine” and begin to let go of the extraneous mental activity that leads to unnecessary suffering.

Dec 30 2017

56mins

Play

Rank #6: Judson Brewer: The Mindful Way to Kick a Craving

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The second of the four noble truths teaches that craving leads to suffering. But that would be obvious to anyone struggling with addiction. Psychiatrist Judson Brewer, who is the director of research at the Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care and Society at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, brings mindfulness practice to the treatment of addiction. Here, Brewer talks to Tricycle contributing editor Amy Gross about the mechanisms in the brain that activate when we have cravings and how Buddhist teachings can help combat a wide variety of addictions.

Apr 13 2018

46mins

Play

Rank #7: Donald Lopez & Jacqueline Stone: How to Read the Lotus Sutra

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The Lotus Sutra is one of the most important Buddhist texts, but for the uninitiated reader, it can make little to no sense. Our guests are two of the foremost scholars in Buddhist studies, Donald Lopez, Jr., Arthur E. Link Distinguished University Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies at the University of Michigan, and Jacqueline Stone, who recently retired from her position as Professor of Japanese Religions at Princeton University. They have written a chapter-by-chapter guide to the Lotus Sutra called Two Buddhas Seated Side by Side: A Guide to the Lotus Sutra (October 2019, Princeton University Press). The book is a highly readable commentary and introduction to the sutra that flips between ancient India, when the sutra was written, and medieval Japan, when it took on a new meaning for the Buddhist priest and reformationist Nichiren. Here, Stone and Lopez sit down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss the issues, such as religious meaning, reinvention, and adaptation, that this book brings to the surface.

Oct 21 2019

45mins

Play

Rank #8: Sharon Salzberg: Real Happiness at Work

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In this episode of Tricycle Talks, contributing editor Amy Gross speaks with renowned meditation teacher and best-selling author Sharon Salzberg. Co-founder of the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts, Salzberg was among the first to bring mindfulness meditation practice to the West. Her new book, Real Happiness at Work, helps us cultivate mindfulness, compassion and awareness at work. In this podcast, Gross and Salzberg speak on the practices that can help us bring these qualities into our workplace and infuse our work with greater meaning.

Apr 14 2017

19mins

Play

Rank #9: Robert Wright: Why (Science Says) Buddhism Is True

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In this episode of Tricycle Talks, best-selling author Robert Wright speaks with Tricycle’s web editor, Wendy Joan Biddlecombe, about how evolutionary psychology supports what the Buddha taught us about suffering and not being satisfied in the present moment. In the talk, Wright explains why we haven’t evolved past difficult emotions such as anxiety and how mindfulness meditation can provide a way to work through—and maybe even free us from—them.

Oct 13 2017

33mins

Play

Rank #10: Roshi Pat Enkyo O'Hara: Getting Intimate

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In the latest episode of Tricycle Talks, contributing editor Amy Gross speaks with Roshi Pat Enkyo O'Hara, Abbot of the Village Zendo in New York City, on how to cultivate compassion for ourselves through honest reflection, breaking down any sort of “fixed self-identity,” and living in the present moment. Enkyo is the Co-Spiritual Director of the Zen Peacemakers Order and is known for her social activism and teachings on sexuality, race, class, and health.

Apr 14 2017

35mins

Play

Rank #11: Frank Ostaseski: Learning to Living Fully

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A pioneer in end-of-life care, Frank Ostaseski brings his Buddhist practice—and a startlingly respectful compassion—to the bedsides of people who are face to face with dying. In his new book, The Five Invitations: What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully, he has learned lessons that “are too important to be left to our final hours”: By turning away from death, he says, we also turn away from the preciousness of life and our ability to live fully. 

Ostaseski guides us through what is otherwise scary territory with kindness, warmth, wisdom and humor. As Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D., writes in her exquisite introduction, “Death, like love, is intimate, and that intimacy is the condition of the deepest learning.”
Contributing editor Amy Gross sits down for a conversation with Ostaseski about his work in our latest Tricycle Talk. Gross teaches mindfulness-based stress reduction at the Open Center in New York City. 
His lessons can help all of us—the sick and the well, the old and the young—live a life of bravery, intimacy, honesty, and ease, even alongside our fear of dying.

Apr 20 2017

39mins

Play

Rank #12: Helen Tworkov: Dying Every Day

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At the age of 36, the Tibetan Buddhist meditation master Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche sneaked out of his monastery in Bodhgaya, India, in the middle of the night to live as a beggar and traveling yogi. The story of how he left behind his privileged lifestyle for a four-year wandering retreat is told in the new book, In Love With the World: A Monk's Journey Through the Bardos of Living and Dying, which he co-wrote with his student and Tricycle’s founding editor, Helen Tworkov.

Tworkov sits down with James Shaheen, Tricycle’s publisher and editor, to discuss how she helped Mingyur Rinpoche tell his story, the near-death experience that transformed his life and teachings, and how seeing the small deaths we experience each day can help us alleviate our fears of dying. They also discuss the origins of the magazine and how the Western Buddhist landscape has changed over time.

Jun 29 2019

47mins

Play

Rank #13: Sharon Salzberg: Breaking Down Love

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Love isn’t just a feeling, says meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg. It’s an ability. This ability to love is inherent in all beings, but it’s up to us whether we develop it or not. Listen in to our newest Tricycle Talks podcast for a conversation with Sharon, author of the just-released Real Love, about the keys for cultivating this innate, indestructible ability, which can help deepen and open up our relationships with everyone from our partner to a stranger on the street—not to mention ourselves.

Jun 21 2017

34mins

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Rank #14: Roshi Joan Halifax: Empathy's Double-Edge

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Altruism. Empathy. Integrity. Respect. Engagement. These five psychological states are keys to living a compassionate, courageous life, according to Buddhist teacher, anthropologist, and social activist Roshi Joan Halifax. However, each has the potential to become counter-productive: altruism can become pathological, empathy can prevent you from seeing another’s situation clearly, and engagement can become an endless to-do list. In her latest book, Standing at the Edge, Roshi Halifax likens these states to ecosystems that are the most instructive when we work from their edges. Here, Roshi Joan Halifax speaks to author Sandy Boucher about how “edge states” have been vital to her work as a change-agent, and how they might help us nourish love and justice in society today.

May 03 2018

51mins

Play

Rank #15: Elaine Pagels: Why Do We Still Have Religion?

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Acclaimed scholar of religion Elaine Pagels discusses the role of faith today, the practical consequences of religious ideas, and what led her to ask, "Why Religion?" with Tricycle's editor and publisher, James Shaheen.

Pagels is the Harrington Spear Paine Foundation Professor of Religion at Princeton University, a MacArthur Fellow, and a best-selling author who won the National Book Award for her groundbreaking 1989 work, "The Gnostic Gospels." Her latest book, "Why Religion? A Personal Story" explores why religion has persisted through a blend of meticulous research and an earnest exploration of her own struggles with faith and grief.

Jan 24 2019

49mins

Play

Rank #16: Lawrence Levy: Beating Burnout by Just Being

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Feeling burnt out does not make you a failure. That’s the first thing Buddhist teacher and former tech executive Lawrence Levy would want you to know. Burnout, Levy says, is a healthy response when our human needs aren’t being met. As the former Chief Financial Officer of Pixar, Levy knows what it means to have a demanding job. But it was during his many years practicing in the Gelug lineage of Tibetan Buddhism that Levy began to find a way to apply Buddhist principles to the difficulties that we face in our everyday lives, leading him to co-found Juniper, an organization devoted to making meditation and the dharma accessible in a modern context.

Here, Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen talks to Levy about the importance of continuous self-care in a mutually supportive environment and how meditation, learning, and connection can help us tend to the conditions that lead to burnout.

Sep 28 2018

37mins

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Rank #17: Lama Tsultrim Allione: Transforming Negativity Through Fierce Feminine Wisdom

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Women have a lot to be angry about. A history of inequality and violence in the Buddhist world and beyond persists to this day. The question remains: what can we do with that anger? Lama Tsultrim Allione says that we have the ability to transform it into a source of strength and clarity—and that goes for all of us, not just women. Known in good part for her work exploring feminine power in Tibetan Buddhism, she examines the figure of the dakinis, fierce feminine embodiments of wisdom, and how they challenge the dominant role models for femininity in Western culture. Lama Tsultrim, who was once Allen Ginsberg’s meditation teacher, has written a new book called Wisdom Rising: Journey into the Mandala of the Empowered Feminine. Here, Lama Tsultrim talks to Executive Editor Emma Varvaloucas about mandala meditation as well as her personal struggle to rediscover Buddhism’s fierce female role models and advocate for equality in a male-dominated culture.

Jul 12 2018

41mins

Play

Rank #18: Pico Iyer: Inside Japan as an Outsider

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Acclaimed travel and spirituality writer Pico Iyer has written two new books about his life in Japan, Autumn Light (Penguin, April 2019), and the forthcoming A Beginner’s Guide to Japan: Observations and Provocations (Penguin, September 2019). Iyer views the books as complimentary: while Autumn Light describes his experience within the culture, A Beginner’s Guide offers his perspective as an outsider. Since marrying and moving in with his wife in her home city of Nara three decades ago, Iyer has become one of the foremost translators of Japanese culture to Western audiences. Iyer discusses his latest books as well as the way impermanence colors Japanese life and what it means to try to understand other cultures at a time when the term globalist has become, in many parts, a dirty word.

Apr 29 2019

59mins

Play

Rank #19: Ronald Purser: McMindfulness

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Ronald Purser is a professor of management at San Francisco State University and a longtime Buddhist practitioner who popularized the term McMindfulness in a piece he wrote for the Huffington Post in 2013. In it, he argued  that mindfulness practice has been commercialized, and reduced to a mere “self-help technique.” His new book, McMindfulness: How Mindfulness Became the New Capitalist Spirituality, offers an argument against the mindfulness movement, claiming that corporations have embraced the practice in order to advance a neoliberal agenda. 

Here, Purser strikes a more balanced tone and discusses the good and bad of the mindfulness movement, explains what he means by the catch-all term McMindfulness, and presents his view that mindfulness has an untapped potential to bring about real social change.

Jul 30 2019

44mins

Play

Rank #20: Arun Gandhi: The Gift of Anger and Other Lessons from My Grandfather Mahatma Gandhi

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“Anger is like electricity: it is just as powerful and just as useful, but only if you use it intelligently.” So told Mahatma Gandhi to his grandson Arun Gandhi, who lived with the political and spiritual giant on his ashram between the ages of 12 and 14. In our latest podcast, Tricycle's executive editor Emma Varvaloucas sits down with Arun to discuss the lessons that he’s learned from his grandfather about working with anger and cultivating peace.

May 26 2017

42mins

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Stephen Batchelor: The Art of Solitude

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As this episode goes live on May 9, 2020, many of us have been sheltering in place for the past few months, and some of us are experiencing the myriad effects of solitude on the human psyche. tephen Batchelor’s new book, The Art of Solitude, was released in mid-February of this year, right before most of us were forced into isolation due to COVID-19. The book documents his explorations of solitude—and how he learned to live in ease with our fundamental aloneness.

Stephen is co-founder of Bodhi College, a UK-based organization dedicated to contemplative learning, and is the author of many books on what he has called secular, or agnostic, Buddhism, including After Buddhism: Rethinking the Dharma for a Secular Age. Tricycle’s Editor and Publisher James Shaheen sat down with Stephen in front of a live audience at New York Open Center in Manhattan on February 19—a few weeks before social distancing measures went into effect.

May 09 2020

1hr 6mins

Play

Joanna Macy: The Work of Our Time

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In recent weeks, reporters, activists, and others have drawn parallels between the global pandemic and the climate crisis. It seems early to say, but we can sense that the two problems are more related than we think, as they are both challenges that we all must face together. Despite the fear, panic, and pain that rages on in our world, Joanna Macy says that she’s lucky to be alive in this moment—because when everything starts to unravel, we have an opportunity to rediscover our deep belonging with the Earth.

No voice has been as clear or as compelling as Joanna Macy's in the intersection that lies between Buddhist practice and ecological movements. An environmental activist, author of eight books, and a scholar of Buddhism and deep ecology, Joanna has been on the front lines of the environmentalist movement for decades. In recent years, as our impact on the environment has become both more apparent and more perilous, activist groups like Extinction Rebellion and others have been turning to Joanna’s work as a source of inspiration. A new book, A Wild Love for the World: Joanna Macy and the Work of Our Time, out today, celebrates her contributions with a selection of Joanna’s essays as well as writings by the many people she has inspired.

Tricycle’s Editor and Publisher James Shaheen talks to Joanna about how she believes we can move forward in a time of great despair—and how we can transform our despair into action.

Apr 14 2020

48mins

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Carina Stone: The Legacy of Michael Stone

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Many in the Buddhist world were shocked at the death of Insight Meditation and yoga teacher Michael Stone in 2017. He was only 42 years old, and few were aware that he had been struggling with bipolar disorder. It was later revealed that he had died from an opioid overdose. His death brought up many questions about the stigmas against mental illness, and the responsibility of teachers to reveal their personal challenges.

Here, Michael’s wife Carina Stone sits down with Tricycle’s Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss Michael’s legacy. Last year, Carina finished working on "The World Comes to You: Notes on Practice, Love, and Social Action," a collection of Michael’s teachings. While editing the book, Carina grappled with difficult questions about Michael’s life, all while working through her own grief around his death.

Mar 18 2020

42mins

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Evan Thompson: Why I'm Not a Buddhist

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Buddhism is not a religion at all––at the same time, it’s the true essence of all religions. And yet it is also compatible with science, or even a “mind science” itself.

Do these ideas sound familiar? They’re part of a constellation of claims that scholar Evan Thompson calls “Buddhist exceptionalism,” the idea that Buddhism stands apart from all other religions as uniquely rational.

Evan is a professor of philosophy at the University of British Columbia as well as a longtime fellow at the Mind and Life Institute, which examines the intersection of science and contemplative wisdom. However, in his new book—provocatively titled Why I’m Not a Buddhist—Evan argues that Buddhism and science are not uniquely compatible, despite what many have claimed, and challenges the popular modernist belief that science can validate Buddhism’s soteriological and ontological goals.

Here, Evan talks with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss the problems with Buddhist modernism, his own spiritual and philosophical journey, and why he is, in fact, not a Buddhist.

Jan 28 2020

51mins

Play

Tara Brach: Radical Compassion

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Many of us struggle to silence our inner critic on a daily basis. According to meditation teacher Tara Brach, that’s because we are living in a “trance of unworthiness,” and are addicted to self-judgment. Tara is the the founder of the Insight Meditation Community of Washington, D.C., a best-selling author, and a clinical psychologist who has been at the forefront of blending Buddhist meditation and therapeutic methods. She is perhaps best known for her teachings on RAIN, an acronym that stands for Recognize, Acceptance, Investigation, and Nurturing, and that describes a method for applying mindfulness to difficult emotions. In her new book, Radical Compassion, she focuses on using RAIN to cultivate compassion—beginning with compassion for ourselves.

Dec 28 2019

56mins

Play

Haemin Sunim: Letting Go of the Perfect Self

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When we begin a Buddhist practice, we often set our sights on lofty spiritual goals. Yet the day-to-day problems we face can be stepping stones to deeper understanding. For Zen monk Haemin Sunim, helping regular people with low self-esteem, feelings of loss, or career failure is an integral part of his monastic duties, and a way to spread the dharma in his home country of South Korea, where Buddhism has been on the decline. 

Dubbed the “Twitter monk” after his account garnered more than 1 million followers, Haemin Sunim in 2015 founded the School of Broken Hearts in Seoul, where he offers both traditional Buddhist instruction and classes designed to help people with the painful parts of life—such as bullying, bereavement, anger management, and dating violence. His latest book, Love for Imperfect Things: How to Accept Yourself in a World Striving for Perfection, is an international best-seller.

Here, Haemin Sunim sits down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his journey from US college professor to Korean household name, and how he teaches people to let go of their ideas about perfection.

Dec 12 2019

38mins

Play

Koshin Paley Ellison: Waking Up from Zombieland

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So often we succumb to our narratives about the people in our lives without taking a moment to examine what’s really going on, and this mindset leaves us feeling isolated. Koshin Paley Ellison calls this state of existence “zombieland,” and says that the habits that keep us locked in our mental stories—and glued to our devices—are rooted in a deep-seated fear of awkwardness and discomfort. Koshin is a Zen chaplain and teacher and co-founder of the New York Zen Center for Contemplative Care, a non-profit that offers training programs in clinical chaplaincy meditation and spiritual counseling. His recent book Wholehearted: Slow Down, Help Out, Wake Up, is a reflection on how the 16 Zen precepts can apply to life today and help us enter into compassionate relationships with ourselves and others. Here, Koshin sits down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his journey from “lone wolf” to Zen chaplain and how being with people who are dying has taught him to live a more meaningful life.

Nov 19 2019

42mins

Play

Donald Lopez & Jacqueline Stone: How to Read the Lotus Sutra

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The Lotus Sutra is one of the most important Buddhist texts, but for the uninitiated reader, it can make little to no sense. Our guests are two of the foremost scholars in Buddhist studies, Donald Lopez, Jr., Arthur E. Link Distinguished University Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies at the University of Michigan, and Jacqueline Stone, who recently retired from her position as Professor of Japanese Religions at Princeton University. They have written a chapter-by-chapter guide to the Lotus Sutra called Two Buddhas Seated Side by Side: A Guide to the Lotus Sutra (October 2019, Princeton University Press). The book is a highly readable commentary and introduction to the sutra that flips between ancient India, when the sutra was written, and medieval Japan, when it took on a new meaning for the Buddhist priest and reformationist Nichiren. Here, Stone and Lopez sit down with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss the issues, such as religious meaning, reinvention, and adaptation, that this book brings to the surface.

Oct 21 2019

45mins

Play

Rhonda Magee: Learning to See Our Racial Biases

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Law professor and mindfulness instructor Rhonda Magee says the recent resurgence of overt racism shows that we failed to address its root cause—our own racial biases. Magee is a professor at the University of San Francisco’s School of Law, where she teaches about racial justice and uses mindfulness to help students surface their own prejudices. She has written about her work in a new book, The Inner Work of Racial Justice: Healing Ourselves and Transforming Our Communities Through Mindfulness.

Sep 26 2019

49mins

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Lawrence Shainberg: Staring at the Wall with Samuel Beckett & Norman Mailer

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Writer and longtime Zen student Lawrence Shainberg joins Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his new book, "Four Men Shaking: Searching for Sanity with Samuel Beckett, Norman Mailer, and My Perfect Zen Teacher." They talk about Shainberg’s struggles as a practitioner and an author and how he brings them together in his new memoir, which recounts his conversations with his literary heroes, Samuel Beckett and Norman Mailer, along with his teacher, Roshi Kyudo Nakagawa.

You can read an excerpt from Four Men Shaking in our Fall 2019 issue.

Aug 21 2019

34mins

Play

Ronald Purser: McMindfulness

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Ronald Purser is a professor of management at San Francisco State University and a longtime Buddhist practitioner who popularized the term McMindfulness in a piece he wrote for the Huffington Post in 2013. In it, he argued  that mindfulness practice has been commercialized, and reduced to a mere “self-help technique.” His new book, McMindfulness: How Mindfulness Became the New Capitalist Spirituality, offers an argument against the mindfulness movement, claiming that corporations have embraced the practice in order to advance a neoliberal agenda. 

Here, Purser strikes a more balanced tone and discusses the good and bad of the mindfulness movement, explains what he means by the catch-all term McMindfulness, and presents his view that mindfulness has an untapped potential to bring about real social change.

Jul 30 2019

44mins

Play

Helen Tworkov: Dying Every Day

Podcast cover
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At the age of 36, the Tibetan Buddhist meditation master Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche sneaked out of his monastery in Bodhgaya, India, in the middle of the night to live as a beggar and traveling yogi. The story of how he left behind his privileged lifestyle for a four-year wandering retreat is told in the new book, In Love With the World: A Monk's Journey Through the Bardos of Living and Dying, which he co-wrote with his student and Tricycle’s founding editor, Helen Tworkov.

Tworkov sits down with James Shaheen, Tricycle’s publisher and editor, to discuss how she helped Mingyur Rinpoche tell his story, the near-death experience that transformed his life and teachings, and how seeing the small deaths we experience each day can help us alleviate our fears of dying. They also discuss the origins of the magazine and how the Western Buddhist landscape has changed over time.

Jun 29 2019

47mins

Play

Candy Gunther Brown: Is School Mindfulness Bringing Religion into the Classroom?

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In recent years, school mindfulness programs have sprung up across the country, setting off a debate about whether the nominally secular programs derived from religious practices violate laws about the separation of church and state.

In her new book, Debating Yoga and Mindfulness in Public Schools, Indiana University Bloomington religious studies professor Candy Gunther Brown takes a look at the history of the separation of church and state and the mindfulness movement and makes the case that mindfulness programs have overstepped their bounds. While she does not recommend that the programs should be banned, she argues that making them mandatory is unconstitutional and that students must be asked to opt-in to the classes. (Even opt-out options, she claims, place an illegal burden on the students.)

Here, Brown talks with Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen about how her view, the legal precedents set from the school prayer debate, and the claims that mindfulness is a form of “stealth Buddhism.”

This episode is sponsored by Maitripa College. www.maitripa.org

May 30 2019

52mins

Play

Pico Iyer: Inside Japan as an Outsider

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Acclaimed travel and spirituality writer Pico Iyer has written two new books about his life in Japan, Autumn Light (Penguin, April 2019), and the forthcoming A Beginner’s Guide to Japan: Observations and Provocations (Penguin, September 2019). Iyer views the books as complimentary: while Autumn Light describes his experience within the culture, A Beginner’s Guide offers his perspective as an outsider. Since marrying and moving in with his wife in her home city of Nara three decades ago, Iyer has become one of the foremost translators of Japanese culture to Western audiences. Iyer discusses his latest books as well as the way impermanence colors Japanese life and what it means to try to understand other cultures at a time when the term globalist has become, in many parts, a dirty word.

Apr 29 2019

59mins

Play

Duncan Ryuken Williams: When Buddhists Were a “National Security Threat”

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On February 19th, 1942, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued an executive order designating military zones along the West Coast and laying the groundwork for US authorities to remove citizens of Japanese descent from their homes and imprison them in camps. While it is widely acknowledged that racism was central to this shameful chapter of American history, the role of religious discrimination cannot be overlooked, says scholar and Soto Zen priest Duncan Ryuken Williams. Here, Williams joins Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen to discuss his new book, American Sutra, how Japanese Americans stood up for religious freedom, and how this disturbing legacy of persecution has taken on new relevance.

Feb 15 2019

39mins

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Elaine Pagels: Why Do We Still Have Religion?

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Acclaimed scholar of religion Elaine Pagels discusses the role of faith today, the practical consequences of religious ideas, and what led her to ask, "Why Religion?" with Tricycle's editor and publisher, James Shaheen.

Pagels is the Harrington Spear Paine Foundation Professor of Religion at Princeton University, a MacArthur Fellow, and a best-selling author who won the National Book Award for her groundbreaking 1989 work, "The Gnostic Gospels." Her latest book, "Why Religion? A Personal Story" explores why religion has persisted through a blend of meticulous research and an earnest exploration of her own struggles with faith and grief.

Jan 24 2019

49mins

Play

Lawrence Levy: Beating Burnout by Just Being

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Feeling burnt out does not make you a failure. That’s the first thing Buddhist teacher and former tech executive Lawrence Levy would want you to know. Burnout, Levy says, is a healthy response when our human needs aren’t being met. As the former Chief Financial Officer of Pixar, Levy knows what it means to have a demanding job. But it was during his many years practicing in the Gelug lineage of Tibetan Buddhism that Levy began to find a way to apply Buddhist principles to the difficulties that we face in our everyday lives, leading him to co-found Juniper, an organization devoted to making meditation and the dharma accessible in a modern context.

Here, Tricycle Editor and Publisher James Shaheen talks to Levy about the importance of continuous self-care in a mutually supportive environment and how meditation, learning, and connection can help us tend to the conditions that lead to burnout.

Sep 28 2018

37mins

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Lama Tsultrim Allione: Transforming Negativity Through Fierce Feminine Wisdom

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Women have a lot to be angry about. A history of inequality and violence in the Buddhist world and beyond persists to this day. The question remains: what can we do with that anger? Lama Tsultrim Allione says that we have the ability to transform it into a source of strength and clarity—and that goes for all of us, not just women. Known in good part for her work exploring feminine power in Tibetan Buddhism, she examines the figure of the dakinis, fierce feminine embodiments of wisdom, and how they challenge the dominant role models for femininity in Western culture. Lama Tsultrim, who was once Allen Ginsberg’s meditation teacher, has written a new book called Wisdom Rising: Journey into the Mandala of the Empowered Feminine. Here, Lama Tsultrim talks to Executive Editor Emma Varvaloucas about mandala meditation as well as her personal struggle to rediscover Buddhism’s fierce female role models and advocate for equality in a male-dominated culture.

Jul 12 2018

41mins

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Arno Michaelis & Pardeep Singh: How to Fight Hate (Without Your Fists)

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In recent years, ethno-nationalist movements have had an apparent resurgence. What can we do to counter the hateful ideologies that have led to so much harm? Arno Michaelis, an ex-neo-Nazi, and Pardeep Singh Kaleka, whose father was murdered by a white supremacist, say that a combination of lovingkindness (Pali, metta) and relentless optimism (Punjabi, chardi kala) is the only path forward. The pair came together after the 2012 Sikh temple shooting in a Milwaukee suburb that left Kaleka fatherless. The gunman, Wade Michael Page, who killed Pardeep’s dad and five others, was a member of the white power group that Arno had founded years earlier. (Arno had since left the organization and later became a Buddhist.)How Arno and Pardeep met and began working together to spread their anti-hate message is the subject of their new book, The Gift of Our Wounds. Here, they talk to Tricycle web editor Matthew Abrahams about their lives and their mission.

Jun 08 2018

43mins

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Roshi Joan Halifax: Empathy's Double-Edge

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Altruism. Empathy. Integrity. Respect. Engagement. These five psychological states are keys to living a compassionate, courageous life, according to Buddhist teacher, anthropologist, and social activist Roshi Joan Halifax. However, each has the potential to become counter-productive: altruism can become pathological, empathy can prevent you from seeing another’s situation clearly, and engagement can become an endless to-do list. In her latest book, Standing at the Edge, Roshi Halifax likens these states to ecosystems that are the most instructive when we work from their edges. Here, Roshi Joan Halifax speaks to author Sandy Boucher about how “edge states” have been vital to her work as a change-agent, and how they might help us nourish love and justice in society today.

May 03 2018

51mins

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iTunes Ratings

117 Ratings
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Fascinating Podcast

By Trike on Train - Jan 21 2014
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Fantastic! I really appreciate Tricycle's willingness to dive into tricky or tough topics.

Great talks, why cant they make more?

By discgator - Nov 07 2013
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I listened to the first 2 talks and have waited for over a month for the third. Cant wait!