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The Buddhist Archives of Dr. Alexander Berzin

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Home > News > Work In Progress: Fourth Quarter 2007

Work In Progress: Fourth Quarter 2007

Alexander Berzin

31 December 2007

Articles sent for German translation:

  • A Deluded Outlook toward a Transitory Network

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Dealing with Difficult Experiences that Arise in Meditation and in Retreat

Completed and edited Russian translations that arrived:

  • The Life of Shakyamuni Buddha
  • Seven-Part Cause and Effect Guideline for Developing Bodhicitta
  • Lessons To Be Learned from the Adaptation
  • Disrupting the Faith
  • Meeting the Challenge of Modernization in Mongolia

Completed Russian translations sent for final editing:

  • A Portrait of Serkong Rinpoche
  • Basic Features of Tantra 
  • Basic Questions about Karma and Rebirth 
  • Buddhism and Science
  • Lam-rim Structured According to the Four Noble Truths
  • The Meaning and Use of Mandalas
  • Mistaken Foreign Myths about Shambhala
  • Overview of the Gelug Monastic Education System
  • Renunciation – Determination To Be Free

Completed Russian translations sent for initial editing:

  • The Appeal of Buddhism in the Modern World
  • Approaches to the Dharma – Intellectual, Emotional, and Devotional
  • Bon and Tibetan Buddhism
  • Advice from His Holiness the Dalai Lama on Teaching Lam-rim
  • Identifying the Objects of Safe Direction (Refuge)
  • The Origin of the Yellow Hat Worn by Monks in the Gelug Tradition

24 December 2007

English course transcriptions that arrived and need editing:

  • Explanation of Methods for Handling Fear

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Islamic-Buddhist Dialogue

Completed and edited Polish translations that arrived:

  • Mistaken Foreign Myths about Shambhala
  • The Nazi Connection with Shambhala and Tibet
  • Identifying the Objects of Safe Direction (Refuge)
  • Basic Scheme of the Five Aggregate Factors of Experience

17 December 2007

New English articles online:

  • Religious Harmony, Compassion, and Islam – His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
  • The Relevance of Religion in the Modern World – His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama

English handwritten notes sent for transcribing:

  • Reading notes on Tsepon W. D. Shakabpa, Tibet: A Political History

English transcription sent for initial editing:

  • Appearance-making from the Clear Light Mind: Gelug Presentation

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Becoming Involved with Buddhism
  • Do You Believe in Rebirth?
  • Guidelines from the Mongolian Experience for Translating Tibetan Buddhist Texts

Articles sent for Turkish translation:

  • Introduction to Buddhism from an Islamic Point of View
  • Dharma in Daily Life
  • Integrating Dharma into Our Lives
  • Basic Questions on Detachment, Nonviolence, and Compassion
  • Short Biography of Alexander Berzin
  • Becoming Involved with Buddhism

Articles sent for extracting and editing from the Vietnamese translation of Alexander Berzin and Thubten Chodron, Glimpse of Reality:

  • Becoming Involved with Buddhism
  • The Appeal of Buddhism in the Modern World 
  • Buddhism and Science 
  • Basic Questions on Karma and Rebirth 
  • Basic Questions on Detachment, Nonviolence, and Compassion 
  • The Buddhist View toward Other Religions 
  • The Compassionate Heart of Bodhicitta 
  • Do You Believe in Rebirth?

10 December 2007

New English Articles Online:

  • What Does a Buddha Know in Knowing the Past, Present, and Future? (6 parts)

Edited English course transcriptions that arrived and needing final editing:

  • Introduction to the Sixteen Aspects of the Four Noble Truths, part 3
  • Brief Explanation of the Ninth Karmapa’s Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance, session 1

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Preliminaries for Meditation or Study: The Seven-Limb Practice
  • Homepage
  • Author Pages
  • About Us Pages
  • News Pages
  • Help Us Pages
  • Menu Pages
  • Navigation Terms

Articles sent for Portuguese translation:

  • The Current Situation of Buddhism in the World
  • Guidelines from the Mongolian Experience of Translating Buddhist Texts
  • Introduction to Tantra
  • Bon and Tibetan Buddhism
  • Introduction to Buddhism from an Islamic Point of View
  • Islamic-Buddhist Dialogue
  • Some Common Features of Islam and Buddhism
  • Overview of Kalachakra

Completed French articles that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Current Situation of Buddhism in the World
  • The Appeal of Buddhism in the Modern World

3 December 2007

New Podcast online:

  • An ongoing course on A Letter of Practical Advice on Sutra and Tantra by Tsongkhapa

Edited English transcripts received of audio files, still needing final editing:

  • Classes of 25 February and 4, 11, and 25 March 2003 of a six-year weekly course on Shantideva’sEngaging in Bodhisattva Behavior.
  • Meditation Methods

English audio files sent for editing for the audio section:

  •  Brief Explanation of the Ninth Karmapa’s Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance (2 sessions)

English audio files sent for transcribing:

  • Brief Explanation of the Ninth Karmapa’s Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance (2 sessions)
  • The Seven-Part Cause and Effect Bodhicitta Meditation (5 sessions)

New German articles online:

  • Extra-bodily States in Buddhism
  • Apprehension of Validly Knowable Phenomena
  • Nirvana
  • The Situations of Buddhism and Islam in China, 1996

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Happiness: An In-Depth Analysis of its Role in Sutra and Tantra, part 1

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Renunciation: The Determination To Be Free
  • Actions for Training from Taking Safe Direction

Articles sent for Portuguese translation:

  • Homepage
  • About Us Pages
  • Help Us Pages
  • Menu Pages
  • Navigation Terms

Completed Russian translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Lessons To Be Learned from the Adaptation of Tibetan Buddhism in Mongolia
  • Disrupting the Faith?
  • Meeting the Challenge of Modernization in Mongolia

Articles sent for French translation:

  • Current Situation of Buddhism in the World
  • The Appeal of Buddhism in the Modern World

Articles sent for Polish translation:

  • The Life of Shakyamuni Buddha
  • Meaning and Use of Mandalas
  • Dealing with Jealousy
  • Handling Fear
  • Dispelling Discomfort at the Eight Transitory Things in Life
  • Tibetan-Mongolian Astrology and Karma
  • Introduction to Tibetan Medicine
  • Actions for Training from Taking Safe Direction
  • Actions for Training from the Pledged State of Aspiring Bodhicitta
  • Root Bodhisattva Vows
  • Secondary Bodhisattva Vows

Progress report on the program for converting Western and Tibetan dates into each other and for calculating the data for the Tibetan calendar and position of the planets for Tibetan horoscopes:

  • The graphics will now work for Firefox and Explorer 7, and only final details of the graphic presentation are left to solve

26 November 2007

New English audio files online:

  • Interview with Alex Berzin on Serkong Rinpoche
  • Meditation Methods
  • Brief Survey of Self-Voidness and Other-Voidness Views

Unedited English transcription arrived:

  • Rebirth

Edited English course transcriptions that arrived and needing final editing:

  • Introduction to the Sixteen Aspects of the Four Noble Truths, part 2
  • Appearances and Appearance-Making according to Karma Kagyu

New German articles online:

  • Stages of Bodhicitta
  • Introduction to In Praise of Dependent Arising
  • Establishing the Existence of Validly Knowable Phenomena
  • Nonconceptual Cognition of Voidness by Shravaka, Pratyekabuddha, and Bodhisattva Aryas According to the Four Tibetan Traditions
  • The Aggregate of Forms of Physical Phenomena
  • Fine Points Concerning the Physical Bodies of Buddhas and Arhats
  • Congruent and Noncongruent Affecting Variables

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Brief Commentary on Eight-Verse Attitude-Training – His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
  • Nirvana

Articles Sent for German translation:

  • Obvious, Obscure, and Extremely Obscure Phenomena
  • Bringing Buddhism Down to Earth

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Religious Conversion in Shambhala
  • Lam-rim Structured According to the Four Noble Truths

Questions Answered Regarding Russian translations:

  • Basic Questions about Karma and Rebirth
  • The Meaning and Use of a Mandala
  • Buddhism and Science
  • Overview of the Gelug Monastic Education System
  • Mistaken Foreign Myths about Shambhala

Work resumed on Polish translations:

  • Mistaken Foreign Myths about Shambhala
  • The Nazi Connection with Shambhala and Tibet

19 November 2007

New English articles online:

  • Obvious, Obscure, and Extremely Obscure Phenomena

Edited English course transcriptions that arrived and needing final editing:

  • Introduction to the Sixteen Aspects of the Four Noble Truths, part 1

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Extra-bodily States in Buddhism
  • The Four Axioms for Examining a Dharma Teaching

12 November 2007

Courses prepared, taught, and recorded:

  • Brief Explanation of the Ninth Karmapa’s Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance
  • Voidness Meditation in Kriya Tantra
  • Overview of Balanced Sensitivity Training
  • The Seven-Part Cause and Effect Bodhicitta Meditation

Edited English course transcriptions that arrived and needing final editing:

  • Practicing Buddhism in the West

New German articles online:

  • Avoiding Mixing Ego with Dharma Practice
  • The Compassionate Heart of Bodhicitta

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Overview of the Eight Sets of Realizations in Abhisamayalamkara
  • The Fourteen Questions to Which Buddha Remained Silent
  • The Sixty-two Wrong Views
  • The Four Maras (Four Demonic Forces)

Completed Russian translations that arrived are in the process of being edited:

  • The Life of Shakyamuni Buddha
  • Equalizing and Exchanging One’s Attitudes about Self and Others
  • Seven-Part Cause and Effect Guideline for Developing Bodhicitta
  • Lessons To Be Learned from the Adaptation of Tibetan Buddhism in Mongolia
  • Disrupting the Faith?
  • Meeting the Challenge of Modernization in Mongolia
  • Do You Believe in Rebirth?

Initial uploading and formatting of the Russian section on our server.

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Avoiding Mixing Ego with Dharma Practice
  • Scheme for Analyzing the Dynamics of a Relation with a Spiritual Teacher

Progress report on Chinese translations:

  • The first 100 pages completed of The Historical Interaction between the Buddhist and Islamic Cultures before the Mongol Empire

Articles sent for German translation:

  • Brief Commentary on Eight-Verse Attitude-Training – H.H. the Fourteenth Dalai Lama
  • Happiness: An In-Depth Analysis of Its Role in Sutra and Tantra (3 parts)

5 November 2007

New English articles online:

  • A Buddhist View of Islam
  • The Relation between Buddhism and Sufism

Consultation in Soquel, California with Kenzur Rinpoche Jampa Thekchok concerning:

  • What Does a Buddha Know in Knowing the Past, Present, and Future?

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Eight-Verse Attitude Training – Langri-tangpa
  • A Prayer for Constructive Actions in the Beginning, Middle, and End – Tsongkhapa

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • “Dharma-Lite” Versus “Real Thing Dharma”
  • The Revival of the Monk Ordination Lineage in Tenth-Century Tibet
  • Basic Questions on Detachment, Nonviolence, and Compassion
  • The Spread of Buddhism in Asia

Completed and edited Spanish translations that arrived:

  • The Buddhist Explanation of Rebirth

29 October 2007

Unedited English transcription arrived:

  • An Extensive Discourse on the Main Points of Dharma, Based on the First Panchen Lama’s Root Text for the Gelug-Kagyu Tradition of Mahamudra – Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche I

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • The Eight Branches of an Arya Pathway Mind (The Eightfold Noble Path)
  • Seven-Point Attitude-Training – Geshe Chaykawa (Togmey-zangpo)
  • Seven-Point Attitude-Training – Geshe Chaykawa (Togmey-zangpo edition with annotation)
  • Seven-Point Attitude-Training – Geshe Chaykawa (Phabongkha edition)
  • Introduction to In Praise of Dependent Arising

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Survey of the Basic Forms of Buddhism
  • The Buddhist View toward Other Religions

Articles sent for German translation:

  • The Heart Sutra
  • Prayer for Constructive (Actions) in the Beginning, Middle, and End – Tsongkhapa (2007 Precise Poetic Translation)
  • Overview of the Eight Sets of Realizations in Abhisamayalamkara
  • Proposal for Research Cooperation between Dharamsala and Uzbekistan

22 October 2007

Several telephone consultations with Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche II concerning:

  • What Does a Buddha Know in Knowing the Past, Present, and Future?

New German articles online:

  • General Introduction to the Initial Scope Teachings of the Graded Path (Lam-rim) – Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche I
  • Tainted and Untainted Phenomena

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Russian and Japanese Involvement with Pre-Communist Tibet: The Role of the Shambhala Legend

Articles sent for German translation:

  • The Fourteen Questions to Which Buddha Remained Silent
  • The Sixty-two Wrong Views
  • The Four Maras (The Four Demonic Impulses)

Articles sent for Italian translation:

  • Avoiding Mixing Ego with Dharma Practice
  • Equalizing and Exchanging One's Attitudes about Self and Others
  • Eight-Verse Attitude-Training

Articles sent for Polish translation

  • Mistaken Foreign Beliefs about Shambhala
  • The Nazi Connection with Shambhala and Tibet

15 October 2007

New English articles online:

  • The Eight Branches of an Arya Pathway Mind (The Eightfold Noble Path)

Weekend course prepared, taught, and recorded:

  • Introduction to the Three Higher Trainings

Work continued on writing:

  • What Does a Buddha Know in Knowing the Past, Present, and Future?

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • The Basic Scheme of the Five Aggregate Factors of Experience
  • Approaches to the Dharma – Intellectual, Emotional, and Devotional

Articles sent for German translation:

  • Fine Points Concerning the Physical Bodies of Buddhas and Arhats
  • The Eight Branches of an Arya Pathway Mind (The Eightfold Noble Path)

8 October 2007

New English articles online:

  • Fine Points Concerning the Physical Bodies of Buddhas and Arhats
  • The Nature of Time as a Temporal Interval

Weekend course prepared, taught, and recorded:

  • Incorrect Consideration and Voidness (7 parts)

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • A Summary Report of the 2007 International Congress on the Women’s Role in the Sangha – part 4

1 October 2007

Work on writing:
  • The Nature of Time as a Temporal Interval
  • What Does a Buddha Know in Knowing the Past, Present, and Future?
New English audio files online:
  • Commentary to An Extensive Six-Session Yoga (6 parts)
  • Interview with Alan Turner about Serkong Rinpoche (1 part)

English transcriptions of audio files that arrived, needing editing:

  • Brief Introduction to the Five Tibetan Traditions of Buddhism and Bon
  • Explanation of The Gelug-Kagyu Tradition of Mahamudra, part 1

Mp3 conversion of unedited audio files that arrived and need editing and transcribing:

  • Explanation of Maitreya’s Furthest Everlasting Stream (Uttaratantra)
  • The Spiritual Student-Teacher Relationship
  • Overcoming Spiritual Materialism
  • Developing a Bodhicitta Aim
  • 105 classes on Shantideva’s Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior (June 2003 -Nov. 2004, Apr. 2005 – Jan. 2006)

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • A Summary Report of the 2007 International Congress on the Women’s Role in the Sangha – part 3

24 September 2007

English weekend seminar prepared in written essay form, taught in Berlin, and recorded for future transcription and audio-editing:

  • The Nature of Time: The Buddhist and Western Scientific Views

English transcriptions of audio files that arrived, needing editing:

  • Session One of eight sessions of Commentary on the First Panchen Lama, The Gelug-Kagyu Tradition of Mahamudra

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • A Summary Report of the 2007 International Congress on the Women’s Role in the Sangha – parts 1 and 2

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • Actions for Training from the Pledged State of Aspiring Bodhicitta

 Completed Spanish translations that arrived and were sent for editing: 

  • Root Bodhisattva Vows
  • Issues in Buddhist Sexual Ethics

17 September 2007

Each week, I am answering many questions about articles that the translators in our various language sections are working on – too many to list on this page. Here, I shall merely list the various other types of work that have gone on this past week. As these, too, are extremely numerous, I shall, in the future, list only the more major ones. I am listing them here in full in order to give an impression of the scope of the work that goes on each week:

Progress has been made on:

  • Retranslation into English of the Ninth Karmapa, Mahamudra Eliminating the Darkness of Ignorance, which I had originally translated and published with the Library of Tibetan Works & Archives in 1977
  • Preparation of further translating and editing guidelines and instructions for our internal Wiki administrative section
  • German translation of the English definitions in the Glossary

New English articles compiled and published online:

  • The Establishment of the Bhikshuni Order in India
  • History of the Theravada Ordination Lineages
  • History of the Mulasarvastivada Ordination Lineages in Tibet 

English transcriptions of audio files that arrived, needing editing:

  • five of my lectures from a six-year weekly course on Shantideva, Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior
  • Introduction to Meditation
  • Practicing Buddhism in the West
  • The Five Traditions in Tibet

Completed German translations that arrived and were sent for editing:

  • Introduction to Meditation on Voidness

Editing of German translations in progress:

  • Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche, General Introduction to the Initial Scope Teachings of the Graded Path
  • Chapters 2 and 3 of Shantideva, Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior 

Completed and edited Portuguese translations that arrived:

  • The Life of Shakyamuni Buddha,
  • Historical Sketch of Buddhism and Islam in Afghanistan
  • Sustainable Development of Western Buddhist Traditions

English audio files sent for transcription:

  • The Passing of Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche
  • Dealing with Fear
  • The Sixteen Aspects of the Four Noble Truths
  • Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche, Commentary to Atisha’s Lamp for the Path to Enlightenment  

English audio files sent for editing:

  • Introduction to Meditation
  • Practicing Buddhism in the West
  • The Five Traditions in Tibet
  • Voidness of the “Impossible Soul” of a Person
  • Voidness Meditation in Kalachakra
  • Interview with Alexander Berzin about Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche
  • Interview with Alan Turner about Tsenzhab Serkong Rinpoche

Handwritten English summaries of scholarly articles sent out for transcription:

  • Melikian-Chirvani, Assadullah Souren, “The Buddhist Ritual in the Literature of Early Islamic Iran”
  • Melikian-Chirvani, Assadullah Souren, “L’évocation litéraire du Bouddhisme dans l’Iran musul­man”
  • Scott, David Alan, “Buddhist Attitudes to Hellenism: a Review of the Issue."

10 September 2007

I just returned from two weeks at Ganden Jangtse Monastery, Mundgod, India, where I visited the 23-year old reincarnation of Serkong Tsenzhab Rinpoche. While there, I worked on an unfinished manuscript for an eBook I had started in 1995, entitled In Search of a Modern Buddhist Ethic:Cultural Adaptation to Modern Times. Based on Sanskrit, Pali, Tibetan, and Chinese primary sources, it gives an extremely detailed, in-depth analysis of karma in relation to sexual ethics. In conjunction with this project, I had several sessions with Rinpoche’s tutor, Geshe Tenzin Zangpo, and with Ling Rinpoche’s tutor, Geshe Wangchen, during which they clarified many complex points about not only karma, but also the nature of vows. Rinpoche himself added further clarification and helped me obtain many additional Tibetan texts to bring back to Berlin to further my research. The eBook manuscript will still require a great deal of work, however, and hopefully I will be able to get back to it soon.

While at the monastery, I also prepared the online versions of two articles I had presented as papers at a conference at the University of Glasgow in November 2006. The articles are entitled “A Buddhist View of Islam” and “The Relation between Buddhism and Sufism” and will be published in October 2007 in Islam and Inter-faith Relations: The Gerald Weisfeld Lectures 2006, eds. Lloyd Ridgeon and Perry Schmidt-Leukel. London: SCM Press. Once the book has been released, I shall have my assistant upload these articles on the website.

I also did the final editing of a six-part audio file, “Commentary on The Extensive Six-Session Yoga.” As soon as our audio technician returns from holiday, he will upload them. I was also just informed that the online audio files of “Reading of Engaging in Bodhisattva Behavior” were not properly edited. Our audio technician will need to take care of that as well once he returns. 

While in India, the following completed Spanish translations arrived from our Spanish editor in Mexico: “Avoiding Mixing Ego with Dharma Practice,” “The Wheel of Sharp Weapons,” and “Holy Wars in Buddhism and Islam: The Myth of Shambhala (full and abridged versions).” These will need to be filed away on our network drive, as well as the numerous other Spanish, Portuguese, and Polish translations that arrived just as I was leaving for India. The assistant who normally does this is away on holiday.

Also, while in India, the Spanish and Portuguese editors have sent me several typographical errors in online articles, which I have now corrected. Our Russian editor also sent me several questions about the article he is currently working on, “The Life of Shakyamuni Buddha,” which I have answered.

Our main webmaster is slowly getting back to work after a long illness. He has informed me that he has begun the additional detailed documentation necessary for our two new volunteer assistant webmasters to be able to take over many areas of his work. Only when this phase of his work has been completed will it be possible to put online the Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, and Polish sections of the website.