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Buddhadharma : Winter 2006
winter 2006| 94 |buddhadharma step forward in creating a network of remote medical providers in Tibet and rural regions in China. ■ The boston shaMbhala center celebrated its 35th anni- versary on the weekend of Sep- tember 22 with a gala dinner, storytelling, and a party that included old friends and new. The center has moved a number of times over the years, from a loft on Charles Street to locations in Cambridge and Newton, and finally, to its present home in Brookline Village. ■ The second annual buddhist WoMen’s conference, sponsored by the Buddhist Council of the Midwest and DePaul University in Chica- go, will be held February 24 at DePaul. Karma Lekshe Tsomo, assistant professor at the Univer- sity of San Diego and president of Sakyadhita, the International Association of Buddhist Women, will deliver the keynote address at the all-day conference entitled Women Voicing the Dharma. ■ bishop dai- Yu henJYoJi, founder of Dai- honzan Henjyoji Tem- ple in Portland, Oregon, died July 4, at 98. A mem- orial service was held at the Port- land temple the weekend of October 14. Bishop Henjyoji is survived by his wife, Wako, two sons and two daughters, 11 grand- children, and two great-grandchil- dren. ■ Loyola University New Orleans history professor benJa- Min Wren died on July 20, at 75. Known as “Zen Ben Wren” to stu- dents, Wren taught Asian history for 35 years. He be- gan his Zen study with Yamada Roshi in Kamakura, Japan, in 1956, and while he was a Jesuit priest for most of his life, he also taught Zen for many years at a small campus zendo. ■ Swiss photo- grapher Manuel bauer’s ex- quisite prints of the Dalai Lama, many of which appear in the cof- fee-table book Journey for Peace, will show at the Scalo | Guye Gal- lery in Los Angeles from Decem- ber 2 to January 6, 2007. Bauer founded The Pictorial Portrait Project, a comprehensive visual archive of the Dalai Lama and, beginning in 2001, accompanied danielsaTo t he translation of Buddhism to the idiom of modern Western culture is taking place before our eyes. A good example is the recent movie zen noir. This Buddhist drama/mystery/comedy, which opened in September, conflates several genres into a rich Buddhist cultural stew. The setting is Los Angeles, and except for the master, the characters are all Westerners trying to practice Zen. The film portrays Zen not as a foreign transplant but as an indigenous adaptation to the needs of the natives of 21st-century L.A. What could be more in the spirit of Zen? i spoke with the film’s director and writer, Marc rosenbush. how did you come up with the idea for zen noir? i was sitting in a temple in chicago at 4:30 in the morning, trying to stay awake, and aware of the other meditators around me trying to stay awake. at one point, as i snapped awake after nearly falling over, i suddenly had the thought, what would everyone do if i just The day’s entertainment included a reading of Horton Hatches the Egg and a performance by Clowns Without Borders. After a picnic, tributes, and a dharma talk by Sylvia, the guests sampled a huge birthday cake in the shape of a stupa. ■ This year marks the 10th anniversary of the dharMa sagara health clinic in eastern Tibet, which has served more than 60,000 patients. The outlook for the next decade is promising. Its parent organization, Surmang Foundation, recently purchased land adjacent to the Dharma Sag- ara Clinic for the construction of a residential training center for doctors and community health workers. On July 25 the first inter- national satellite phone call was made from the clinic, eliminating the need to relay messages via log- ging trucks. The new communica- tions system will provide web, e-mail, and telephone access, a big came to dharMa druM Moun- tain center in Pine Bush, New York, for the Young Leaders Peacebuilding Retreat from Octo- ber 25 to 28. The gathering of 20- to 30-year-olds was an opportunity to discuss and reflect upon what young people can do to enhance the environment of peace in the most sensitive areas of the world. Marianne Marstrand, executive director of the Global Peace Ini- tiative of Women and the event’s organizer, said the retreat/confer- ence “highlights some of the less traditional work great Buddhist leaders such as Master Sheng Yen are undertaking [with young peo- ple].” ■ rokpa uk hosted a ten- day Buddhist Himalayas festival from August 11 to 20 in north- western England to raise funds to support and protect indigenous cultures of the Himalayas. The week’s events included film screen- ings, a Himalayan fair trade mar- ket, traditional Tibetan dance and songs, a Himalayan photography exhibit, and lectures by Himalayan travelers. Akong Tulku Rinpoche delivered the festival’s keynote address. ■ sYlVia boorstein celebrated her 70th birthday on July 23 with 250 well-wishers at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. dropped dead? That got me thinking about eastern versus western views of death and impermanence, which seemed like an inter- esting topic to explore. how did that evolve into a murder mystery? i hit on the idea of having a detective represent logic-based western thinking. he’d go to solve a mysterious death in a buddhist temple but he’d keep getting confused by all the zen sus- pects. Ultimately, he’d realize he has to solve the mystery of death itself. suddenly the whole thing gelled, and i knew what i wanted to do: i’d make a murder mystery where the murder was a koan for the detective, and the movie itself would be a koan for the audience. Was it easy to get a Zen koan murder mystery made? while i’d made the film as a koan for the audi- ence, i never expected that making the film and getting it out into the world would be a koan for me. it was an ongoing challenge to somehow stay in my beginner’s mind – to let go of all my preconceived ideas of how any- thing was supposed to work and just let the film happen. What has been the response to the movie? it’s not an easy film, but for those who just give themselves to the experience, it can be pretty powerful. There was a woman at the rhode island film festival who came up to me after the film and said that her husband had recently died, and though she didn’t know anything about buddhism, the film somehow made her feel better. what more could i ask for? Ed and the detective, two of the main characters in Zen Noir. coUrTesyzenmoViellcPerfecTcirclePhoTograPhycoUrTesykongobUJiTemPleharoldbaqUeT the Making of a Zen MYsterY By Michael Wenger