The Harvard Library has announced a collaborative project with the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center (TBRC) to upload more than 10 million pages of Tibetan Buddhist literature into its Digital Repository System as a means to provide a “safe haven” for the TBRC’s archive. The TBRC was founded in 1999 by the late Gene Smith, with a mandate to digitally scan and catalog his private collection of the more than 12,000 volumes from the Tibetan Buddhist canon he had acquired from Tibetan refugees fleeing the political turmoil in their homeland. Harvard Library experts will begin the upload in July and estimate it will take a year to complete. Afterward, the collection will be made available to Harvard Library users through its HOLLIS catalog. Dan Hazen, associate librarian for collection development, called the partnership with TBRC to preserve Tibetan literature one of Harvard Library’s “hallmark projects.”
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Digital Dharma, a documentary about the late Tibetologist E. Gene Smith, is screening at the Rubin Museum in New York City every Wednesday through September 5. The film, directed by Dafna Yachin, documents how Smith, a Mormon from Ogden, Utah, came to find, preserve, and digitize over 20,000 volumes of Tibetan religious texts.
The film will also be shown at the International Documentary Association’s upcoming DocuWeeks festivals, which run from August 10 to 16 in Los Angeles and August 17 to 23 in New York. Show times and tickets are available here. Through the festival, Digital Dharma will be eligible for Academy Award consideration, but since the IDA is nonprofit, the filmmakers need to pay a co-op fee to participate. They’re hoping to raise $25,000 to cover the fee and pay for a master print as well as marketing and promotion; you can contribute to their fundraising campaign here. After the jump, watch a trailer for Digital Dharma. Read More »
The Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center (TBRC) has moved from the Rubin Museum of Art to a new office space in Cambridge, Massachusetts, right in Harvard Square. The TBRC was originally founded by the late Tibetan scholar E. Gene Smith in Cambridge back in 1999.
According to a recent blog post on the move, TBRC is excited to announce that they have started a new internship program in collaboration with the Harvard Divinity School and the Department of South Asian Studies at Harvard. They’ve also set up a kiosk and seminar room on site for visitors and students, to assist them in their research. Read More »
When the eighteenth annual Sedona International Film Festival opens next week, the audience will get a sneak peek at Philadelphia director Dafna Yachin’s feature-length documentary, Digital Dharma — the documentary film that Buddhadharma News readers recently got to preview.
The film tells the story of unlikely hero E. Gene Smith, a Mormon from Utah who, it has been said, saved Tibetan Buddhism. Read More »
Last month we shared clips from Digital Dharma, the documentary-in-progress from filmmaker Dafna Yachin, about E. Gene Smith, who spent fifty years finding, preserving, and digitizing more than 20,000 volumes of ancient Tibetan Buddhist text. It’s an incredible story, well told, but the film will only be completed if Dafna can raise $30,000 through a Kickstarter campaign. She’s currently close to $9000, but has only 2 weeks to raise the remaining $21,000. Without your support, the story of Gene and the struggle to save Tibetan texts and culture will not be told. Want to help? Click here to contribute to the Kickstarter campaign — and see clips from the movie.
We’ve been talking a lot about the late E. Gene Smith here this week; now there’s related breaking news, by way of Jeff Wallman, Executive Director of the Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center (of which the legendary Smith was the founder):
“On behalf of the Board of Directors of TBRC, I am pleased to announce TBRC is moving our US office in the coming year 2012. In order to expand on our success and further develop our resources, we will relocate our research, text preservation and administrative operations to the Cambridge/Boston area, where we can take advantage of the rich opportunities in Tibetan studies and information technology at universities and research institutions there. Read More »
Our private screening contest is over — congratulations, Michael Dorfman! — but there’s still a bit more Digital Dharma to share with you. That is, we’re offering two more exclusive clips from the documentary about E. Gene Smith, who died one year ago this Friday. Watch them below. We also hope you’ll consider honoring Gene’s memory and mission of preserving and digitizing irreplaceable Tibetan Buddhist texts by contributing to Digital Dharma’s Kickstarter campaign. Read More »
Buddhadharma News is pleased to present more exclusive clips from Digital Dharma, the documentary about the life and work of the late, legendary Tibetologist E. Gene Smith. (December 16 will mark the one-year anniversary of Gene’s passing.) Click through here to watch two new clips — “The Tibetan Buddhist Resource Center” and “Matthieu Ricard and Gene Smith” — and for links to previous clips, as well as info on how you can win your own private Digital Dharma screening.* Read More »
From Emily Danies
The Board of Arizona Friends of Tibet recently finalized grants of $14,000. About half are repeat projects and half new ones. We are always so amazed at the true bodhisattva activity that abounds in the world, and how grateful people are for our small grants. We wish we had more to give. See a list of this year’s beneficiaries after the jump. Read More »
In March of 2009, over 12,000 of us signed a letter of support to the Translating the Words of The Buddha conference ––a gathering of over 50 of the world’s top Tibetan-English translators––letting Dharma translators around the world know that we appreciate and support their translation effort. At the conclusion of this conference, the assembled group of translators and patrons pledged to translate the entire collection of Buddha’s teaching and commentaries into English within 100 years. Read More »
October 24, 2009: Dear Friends, My name is Huang Jing Rui, and I am honored to be newly appointed as the interim executive director of the Buddhist Literary Heritage Project (BLHP). The goal of this new initiative is to see all of the vast and extraordinary riches of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist literature, particularly the Kangyur and Tengyur, translated into English and other modern languages and made universally accessible within a hundred years. Read More »
In this adaptation from his book, Zen Master Who? A Guide to the People and Stories of Zen, James Ishmael Ford concisely places the life and work of the late Charlotte Joko Beck (left) into context.
The Ordinary Mind School was among the first Zen communities to consciously engage the emotional life and the shadows of the human mind as Zen practice. The late Charlotte Joko Beck and her dharma heirs adapted elements of the vipassana tradition — a relentless inquiry into the contours of the human mind — as unambiguous Zen discipline. Read More »
After recently entering hospice, Charlotte Joko Beck, the very influential Zen teacher and bestselling author, has died.
Beck, born in 1917, began her practice of Zen with Hakuyu Taizan Maezumi Roshi, from whom she received Dharma transmission.
She was the founder, in 1983, of the Zen Center of San Diego and, in 1995, of the Ordinary Mind Zen School. Through her teachings, and her work as the author of two modern Zen classics — Everyday Zen: Love and Work and Nothing Special: Living Zen — Beck became a very visible and widely admired force among the first generation of America’s convert Buddhists. Her influence continues on through her teachings and through those for whom she was a direct teacher.
Elihu Smith, a student of Beck’s, today shared a new message from Beck’s daughter Brenda (writing also on behalf of Beck’s son), with whom he’s been keeping in contact. It reads, in part: “Our mother, Joko, died peacefully at 0730 Wednesday June 15, 2011. Love to all and thank you for your prayers for a peaceful passing for the most amazing person I have ever known.”
According to the Twitter account of fellow Zen teacher Joan Halifax, among Beck’s last words was the statement,”This too is wonder.”