When disaster strikes resist the temptation to scream 'Why Me?' writes Diane Southam. Try asking 'Why not me?' It’s far more empowering



Water has played a big part in my life this year. Even as I write I’m struggling to concentrate because Bob the Builder is busy drilling up the road outside the front door of my temporary (more of that later) home.

I'm also finding it hard to resist a self-pitying whinge that goes something like this: Out of all the houses in this street why did the water main have to burst outside mine?



Read more...

Actress Vinessa Shaw has flirted with Russell Crowe in 3:10 to Yuma, kicked around a soccer ball with Rodney Dangerfield in Lady Bugs, and shared a kiss with Joaquin Phoenix in Two Lovers.



She says Buddhism’s emphasis on compassion is almost a form of method acting - it helps her inhabit and relate to all kinds of characters. In this interview for Interfaith Voices (at 23:48) she reflects on how Nichiren Buddhism has kept her sane in the world of Hollywood.

The Buddha was a businessman. But don't take anyone's word for it - it's written in stone.




Of all the iconic scenes found in the earliest Buddhist art from India, none are more striking than the sculpted representation of a title deed involving one of Buddhism's most venerable monasteries: The transaction, involving 10 million gold coins, clearly shows that, far from being an ascetic, other-worldly religious tradition, Buddhism was, in fact, 'deeply entangled with money – and a very great deal of it at that,' according to Gregory Schopen, chair of the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures and an authority on ancient Indian Buddhism.



Former BBC TV presenter - and one-time RAF fighter pilot - William Woollard became a 'reluctant Buddhist' several years ago



Now he says he is 'wholly convinced of its profound value to any life, anywhere.'

He explains the reasons for his conversion - and his conviction - in this inspiring talk.

In the West we like to humanise our animals, writes Diane Southam. Cuddly little creatures with human traits and foibles pervade our children’s stories. We take our domestic pets along to beauty parlours and even psychiatrists. 


Inuit Eskimos also believe in the existence of an animal-human connection. They claim that animals understand human speech and credit the bear with having a human soul. The similarity, however, ends there

Read more...

Queen's Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Gregson conferrred an honorary Doctorate of Laws on Daisaku Ikeda - the international peacemaker and educationalist - in Japan on 18 May


Queen’s has strong ties with Japan, and is cementing research and study abroad links with the prestigious Soka University in the areas of law, politics, management and sociology. In addition to signing an agreement which will see the exchange of students between Queen’s and Japan, Professor Gregson conferred an honorary Doctorate of Laws on Daisaku Ikeda.  A prolific writer, poet and peace activist, Dr Ikeda is recognised as the world’s leading interpreter of Buddhist philosophy.

Read more...

There are few artists in the music industry who are more influential or more respected than Herbie Hancock, writes Geraldine Royds

Read more...

About SGI