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Buddhadharma : Winter 2008
85 winter 2 00 8 buddhadharma: the practitioner’s quarterly September 26 marked the one- year anniversary of the Saf fron Revolution. Last year on that date, the military junta began a brutal crackdown that ended the pro-democracy protests of thou- sands of Buddhist monks and nuns and over half a million ordi- nary Burmese citizens. The Inter- national Burmese Monks Organi- zation (IMBO) called for a day of action to mark the anniversary and held an all-day meditation at the United Nations in New York (below, monk on peace walk near the UN). Meanwhile, Buddhist communities in the U.S. and around the world answered the Buddhist Peace Fellowship’s call for Western Buddhists to support Burmese democracy by staging public meditations and peaceful marches on the anniversary day, chanting the metta sutta as Bur- mese monks did a year ago. Tibet House’s annual auction at Christie’s New York is set for December 1. Big-ticket items include an exotic Asian adventure expedi- tion for two, lunch with Uma and Bob Thurman, a vacation in India and Bhutan, a $20,000 shopping spree at Donna Karan, and a walk-on part in a (so far unidenti- fied) major motion picture. nancywu HiSToRic gaTHeRing of TRanSlaToRS by Barry Boyce The leading translators of dharma from Tibetan into English—over forty-five in all—will gather in March for a six-day conference, Translating the words of the Buddha, at Deer Park Institute in Bir, India. The conference, hosted by Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, under the auspices of the Khyentse Foundation, aims to foster collaboration among the key translators from both the scholarly and practice traditions, represent- ing the four schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Gene Smith, founder of the Tibetan Buddhist Resource center, has been the lead consultant for the conference, helping to pull together the most influential translators, as well as representatives from the major publishers of Tibetan works in English. working in concert with the Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, who will chair the conference, Dzongsar Khyentse is initiating a multigenerational project to translate the entire Tripitika from Tibetan to English. The Tibetan canon has two parts: the 108-volume Kangyur, containing sutras and tantras and regarded as the words of the Buddha; and the Tanjur, containing over 200 volumes focused on the commentarial tradition. as the title of the conference indicates, its major focus is launching a collaborative effort to translate the entire Kangyur. as Michelle Martin, a longtime translator who works extensively with the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa, says, “while most practitioners of Tibetan Buddhism work with the commentarial tradition, the Kangyur is the base on which the commentaries rest. Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche sees the need to make this base available to future generations.” while the conference objectives are not limited to the Kangyur project, it provides the focus, since such a massive undertaking will require extensive cooperation in setting priorities for texts to translate, funding, and organization. Lineage heads, honorary patrons, and participants are being polled prior to the conference to identify their priorities for untranslated texts; the resulting master list will be discussed at the conference, and the foundation will fund one of the choices. Developing databases and other tools, finding means to improve collaboration and communication, and encouraging the creation of a network or association are also major objectives. Tyler Dewar, of nalandabodhi, who does both oral and written translation, is excited that translators are starting to gather more (the Light of Berotsana Translation Group sponsored a three-day event in September in colorado) and feels the conference will result in “networking and development of resources that will enhance our ability to make more untranslated texts available. It will also be an opportunity to share a rare moment of community. we’re not quite hermits, but we almost never get a chance to explore deeply together the real nitty-gritty of our job.” a complete listing of participants and further details about the conference are available at khyentsefoundation.com. ➤ MahaSanghaNews 86 meditate 08 88 tuning out ituneS 89 dalai lama’S eldeSt brother dieS winter 2008 editor: andrea mcquillin KhyEnTSEFounDaTIon