Okay, “Enlightenment or bust” might be a bit dramatic, but…

"Dang Zang" is an empty name. The blog has to do with the dharma; material related to Buddhist teachings (Tibetan style in particular, Kagyu in even more particular), meditation, gurus and lamas be they genuine or flaky, books and events. I do have a more personal blog, Pica Pica, and a site for my work.

Oh yes, it's by Alex Wilding

Archive

  • Is the SIAE as bad as they say? 25/06/2014
    If you happen to have ploughed through http://alex-wilding.com/2014/03/busking-in-italy/ you will not be surprised about the resentment felt by many musicians regarding the SIAE (the Italian copyright-collecting agency). In the past, this had been a matter of stories that I had heard, but now I am in the middle of direct experience. We Read more... Is the SI
  • Doing more music 25/04/2014
    Since I have started to do a bit more music – blues-based guitar playing, to be more precise – and since I hope to continue, I set up a Facebook “musician” page the other day. Thanks to the people who “liked” it, I got to the count where Facebook lets you set a URL that is Read more... Doing more music
  • Busking in Italy 23/03/2014
    This post began as a response, on a closed Facebook group, to a question about busking in Italy. By the time I’d written it I realised that I have collected a fair amount of information and it might be worthwhile “putting it out there”. On the other hand, I am well aware that there are things Read more... Busking in Italy
  • A sign of the times? 23/03/2014
    The property market is not exactly bubbling here, any more than in many places, but a couple of days ago this notice appeared on a lamppost at the corner of the village: It says that this estate agency, with an office in Pontremoli, is looking on behalf of Russian clients for farms (poderi), houses (casali – a Read more... A sign of the times?
Sunday September 27th, 2009. Posted by Alex W:

Catalogue

Bit by bit the project of making a basic catalogue of my Buddhist library is moving forwards – one bookcase is now done!

Case1

That’s 207 books so far. But have they done me any good?

Wednesday June 24th, 2009. Posted by Alex W:

Links, links

A “blogroll” of chosen links would be a good idea, but in the meantime here are some of the links I had on the old version of this site. I’m open to suggestions as to improvements or broken links, and I guess I could go through my “favourites” to see what else there is.

While the Gyalwa Karmapa was so much in the news since his flight from Tibet, Nalandabodhi were providing links to news stories, video and audio clips etc., and although that is now a thing of the past, a lot of interesting material is still accessible there.

I used to have a huge collection of links, but I never had time to keep checking them for content, availability etc., and there are others who do that kind of thing much better than me. There are always search engines, or you could go to Quiet Mountain. So this is just a small selection of personal favourites:

If you are looking for an introduction to Buddhism on the web, there are some very clear teachings presented by KTD, over there in New York State, and the teachings at Samye Ling in Scotland are also well worth a look – see links to these centres below. You could spend many happy hours browsing on the base of Simhananda, where Anthony Bruno has, amongst other things, a long list of rather well-chosen teachings.

You wanna know more? Read a book! You wanna book? Try Snow Lion, possibly the best bookstore in the world - there is a link at top right too, and you might also like to sign up for their newsletter.

Don’t know what to buy? Let me suggest Dharma Paths which is a good clear basic summary by Khenpo Karthar, Luminous Mind by Kalu Rinpoche, The Jewel Ornament of Liberation (I would suggest the Khenpo Konchog version), the Life of Milarepa, the Hundred Thousand Songs of Milarepa, Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance, Words of my Perfect Teacher … but I’m not trying to provide a bibliography.

If you can’t afford to spend, spend, spend, there is excellent reading in the on-line newsletter that used to be issued by Shenpen Osel. The site stopped growing years ago, but the old issues are still available, and well worth downloading.

Time to put some of it into practice? You might, for instance, like to take a trip to Scotland and stay at Samye Ling, but if you are on the left of the Atlantic you might nip to NY to visit Karma Triyana Dharmachakra – the site also includes reading in Densal Online. When in Kathmandu, if you can tear yourself away from the stupa at Baudha, why not visit Benchen, the monastery of Tenga Rinpoche and of Sangye Nyenpa Rinpoche. Last and perhaps this time really least, as a Birmingham lad, I can’t close this paragraph without including Birmingham Karma Ling, but the site is currently unavailable. Recently (did someone say “at last”?) a simple site, but useful if you are thinking of going, has opened for Marpa House (between Cambridge and Saffron Walden, England), dear to my heart, where I took refuge back in 1974!

A few links related to individual teachers: Thrangu Rinpoche has a site that might well be worth a visit, a site was opened recently for the great Khenpo Tsultrim, while Ringu Tulku Rinpoche has a site worth checking. Not so much an individual teacher, the Tibetan Government in Exile‘s website contains a lot of good information, both religious and political.

Feel like a chat? I wouldn’t recommend usenet these days, but how about joining up at the Kagyu discussion list at “yahoo”.

Karma Samten Choeling here in Sydney now has a new, working site. Traleg Rinpoche’s centre unfortunately still does not.

And when it’s time to DO something, what about helping Rokpa?

Tuesday May 26th, 2009. Posted by Alex:

Catalogue progress

Whoopee! The catalog project for my dharma books is creeping forward. I passed the third shelf on the first book-case the other day. In terms of length of shelving, that is one quarter of the library, so I should be finished by the end of the year, with any luck! It looks like the total will be around 500 books.

Sunday April 5th, 2009. Posted by Alex:

Overdue catalogue

Over 40-plus years I’ve collected something around 400 Buddhist books of one sort or another. It’s getting hard to sort them, and sometimes hard to find one that I know is there. Yesterday I took the bold step of opening an Excel file to make a catalogue.

It’s a tedious job – I guess it would take at least a few days if I worked at it full time, so the reality is that it will take a few months. But the bright spot is that I got some coloured tabs to help the job:

One has to keep ones chin up somehow, and these should do the trick!