Josephine Nolan

Josephine Nolan is an editor and contributing feature writer for several online publications, including EDI Weekly and Buddha Weekly. She is Editor-in-Chief for Blogertize Publications.

Purify Karma and Accumulate Merit with Mandala

Modern life affords us so little time to practice accumulating of merit and purification—and so many excuses to postpone for today. Who has time for daily offerings? It's all most of us can do to fit in ten ...

Initiation or Empowerment: what is it, why it is important in Vajrayana, how it helps, when you need it, how to receive it

The great Lama Thubten Yeshe, one of the pioneer teachers who brought Vajrayana and Tantric Buddhism to the West, defined initiation this way: The much revered Guru Lama Yeshe. "What is initiation? It is the beginning of the ...

Buddha: How to protect wealth, associate with virtuous friends and relate to your spouse, employer, children: guidance for lay practitioners in Sigalovada Sutta

It may seem hard to imagine the Peerless One, Shakyamuni Buddha, teaching the more mundane aspects of lay life conduct. Imagine the Buddha teachings us "financial planning" (really!) — and  to relate to our children, employers and spouse! ...

The Science of Mantras: Mantras Work With or Without Faith; Research Supports the Effectiveness of Sanskrit Mantra for Healing — and Even Environmental Transformation

"At the heart of each of us, whatever our imperfections, there exists a silent pulse of perfect rhythm, made up of wave forms and resonances, which is absolutely individual and unique, and yet which connects us to everything ...

Buddha teaches the Nadi Sutta: overcoming the assumptions of self with the River Sutra; the river of Samsara cannot be escaped by clinging to the notion of an “abiding self”

One of the shorter sutras, the Nadi Sutta, teaches us that if we believe in an "abiding self" (or soul) we are like "a man swept away by the current" who "would grab hold of kasha grasses, but ...

Guan Shi Yin and the ten great protections of the Goddess of Mercy Kuanyin: Avalokiteshvara, Bodhisattva of Compassion

Millions of devotees around the world call on the name of Guan Yin (Kuanyin) Goddess of Mercy, in times of need, fear, or despair. Aside from her best-known role as Compassion embodied — she is, after all, none ...

Dalai Lama and Lama Tsongkhapa: teachings on calm abiding meditation that go beyond “the breath” as the focus — targeting the main affliction

When we think of calm-abiding meditation, we might think of breath as the focal point of meditation. In-out. Follow the breath. Breath, as a focal point, however, is just one of many targeted calm-abiding meditations. Breathing mindfulness is ...

Lama Zopa Rinpoche and other teachers recommend Kṣitigarbha mantra and practice for times of disaster, especially hurricane and earthquake, because of the great Bodhisattva’s vow

In times of great danger, many Mahayana Buddhists call out to Tara for rescue, or Avalokiteshvara for compassion — but in times of impending great natural disasters, such as hurricane, typhoon, tornado, earthquake, Buddhists inevitably Kṣitigarbha (or Jizo ...

84,000 doors to Enlightenment: mystical Buddhist, Zen Buddhist, intellectual Buddhist, devotional Buddhist, hipster Buddhist: many doors, one destination

Buddha taught many skilful means or paths. In Buddhism, these are typically described with the vehicle, path or doors metaphors. In the Pali Canon, it is said "There are 84,000 doors to Enlightenment" [5]. Clearly, in Buddha's time, ...

Shabkar’s Song of Practice: the entire path, from refuge to generation to completion in one song by one of the great sages of Tibet

Only a true visionary Yogi could distil a path that fills lifetimes and books into a single song. Such a Yogi is the great Shabkar Tsokdruk Rangdrol, an emanation of the great Milarepa. Both were famous for their ...

Mangala Sutta: The Sutra on Happiness; Buddha teaches the 11 blessings, those things which bring happiness

I heard these words of the Buddha one time when the Lord was living in the vicinity of Savatthi at the Anathapindika Monastery in the Jeta Grove. Late at night, a deva appeared whose light and beauty made ...

Profound simplicity of “Amituofo”: why Nianfo or Nembutsu is a deep, complete practice with innumerable benefits and cannot be dismissed as faith-based: w. full Amitabha Sutra

There is a something very precious and special about the practice of chanting the name of Amitabha Buddha: traditionally, the single word chant, Amituofo. When you participate in this elegant and powerful practice, you feel immediate peace and ...