Apology for broken website email form

Friends,

Please accept my apology.

At some point in the recent past, security settings on my hosting provider changed the mechanisms for sending email from the Michigan Buddhist contact page. I feel embarrassed for not finding out about this earlier. Unfortunately, it’s a problem you don’t realize you have until it gets to be a much bigger problem. I have updated the website to reflect the necessary changes, and test emails have been delivered successfully.

It’s very possible you sent an email that I did not receive. I will dig through the logs and see if I can restore as many messages as possible, but please consider contacting me again so that I may respond appropriately.

Thank you for your continued support and patience,

Jim.

Ethical Eating Day – Jan. 11 2016

Tzu Chi USA is an international humanitarian organization whose mission is to relieve the suffering of those in need, and create a better world for all.Ethical Eating Day banner
This is late notice, as I only heard about it this earlier this morning, but I wanted to make everyone aware who might be interested in making a positive change in their lives. Please visit the Tzu Chi website, and consider eating a vegetarian diet today for the benefit of all beings.

How do I find sangha near me?

Michigan Buddhist is an independent, unaffiliated website that supplies information for the many individual sangha, or groups of Buddhist practitioners, throughout Michigan. Finding them is easy when using the ‘DIRECTORY’ menu in the left side bar below the buddha figure image. Click on a region in Michigan and the cities in that region are displayed. Click on the city nearest you to display the locations.

New sangha info posted

Friends,

Thanks to new information from some kind visitors to Michigan Buddhist, we are able to list a new monastery in Chelsea, and updated information for two sangha in Ann Arbor, as well as a new secular sangha.

We are always interested in making Michigan Buddhist a valuable resource for the greater Buddhist community. Please inform us if you know of changes to a sangha listing, and especially news of a new listing.

Thank you.

Website updated, now more complete

Friends,

I spent a few days scouring the internet to find the most up to date information for temple, group, and sangha in Michigan. Historically it’s been hard to discover non-English language temples, as they don’t show up in English-language queries. I stumbled across a great resource that’s made this task much simpler. Most if not all temples and groups of any size are registered as non-profit, and searching their non-profit filings is quite easy. So, I added a couple of dozen temples and groups I previously didn’t know about! Continue reading Website updated, now more complete

Site updates, new sangha listings

Friends, I’m happy to report that I’ve added two new pages, for two new sanghas: Madison Heights, and Westland. I’m also in the process of giving each city that contains sangha it’s own page, instead of having a page for an area. The Detroit page has listings for a lot of sanghas throughout the metro area, which will soon have their own pages. Royal Oak is the first such page. I’ve also added new sangha on the Kalamazoo page, so please take a look and check out the latest changes to Michigan Buddhist.

The redesign project is on hold, as you’ve probably noticed by now. Never seems to be enough time to do all the stuff you want to do. The secret, of course, is to prioritize what is most important. Perhaps I need to re-examine those priorities? Perhaps.

Growing pains

Friends, from time to time, software updates conflict with one another and cause more trouble than they’re worth. Some recent changes behind the scenes completely broke the site design of Michigan Buddhist. The previous design had been a source of trouble before, and I was just wanted to move on. I didn’t anticipate how difficult fixing the problems would be, so I decided to make the site live again with a preliminary design while I worked on a complete redesign. The current ‘look’ of Michigan Buddhist is functional, but not what I want, yet. I hope I haven’t inconvenienced anyone too much during the downtime. Best wishes to you and yours, always.

Grand Rapids Press, MLive.com cover ordination of monks

As mentioned in an earlier post, several practitioners will accept novice ordination at the Grand Rapids Buddhist Temple and Zen Center this Sunday, December 8. That it was happening in Grand Rapids, known for its conservatism and large Christian population, drew the attention of local media outlets The Grand Rapids Press and MLive.com. Please go read their take on the story and provide feedback in the comments if you have something substantive to offer.

Greetings, friends

It has been some time since I last spoke to you directly, readers. Things have changed, as one might expect. I’d like to catch up a bit.

Like many workers, my job was eliminated. Since March of 2012 I’ve been doing what I can to get by, picking up part time work here and there. I’ve taught some stress reduction classes, and have gone back to helping facilitate our local sangha. My own practice has evolved dramatically. I began a “Sit365” challenge, agreeing to sit in meditation for an hour every day for a year. I’m 138 days in, and it has deepened my practice considerably. I’m also visiting Buddhist inmates in correctional facilities as part of the SokukoJi Prison Project, facilitated by Sokuzan Bob Brown at SokukoJi Buddhist Community in Battle Creek.

I wanted you to know that I am still here, and I am still responding to your emails, although not always in as timely a fashion as I might like. I’ve overlooked publicizing some of your recent events, and for this I apologize.

As always, if your sangha/group/center/temple is not listed on Michigan Buddhist, please let me know so that I can add it. If you know of a sangha that isn’t listed, please put them in contact with me. I would especially like to reach out to non-english speaking sangha, as the site is woefully inadequate in that regard.

If you find the site useful and are able to practice generosity, please consider visiting our Donations page and donate if you’re able.

Until we speak again:

May all sentient beings have happiness and its causes,
May all sentient beings be free of suffering and its causes,
May all sentient beings never be separated from bliss without suffering,
May all sentient beings be in equanimity, free of bias, attachment and anger.

Jim.

2012 in review

How many people visited Michigan Buddhist in 2012? Where did they come from? What were they looking for? Where did they go?
For a quick review of all things Michigan Buddhist in 2012, check out this cool page presented by WordPress and Jetpack.

New Torii Gate at SokukoJi

A traditional Japanese torii gate has been installed at SokukoJi Buddhist Community Temple in Battle Creek. Torii, which literally means “bird perch” in Japanese, traditionally marks the entrance into a sacred space. In Japan torii gates are usually found in front of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. Shinto is a religion that coexists with Buddhism in Japan. Though it is historically part of Japanese culture, the origin of the torii is uncertain, as there is evidence for its use in ancient Indian Buddhism as well as in spiritual culture across Asia. The torii was designed by Sokuzan Bob Brown and built by Don McLean.