Other Religions

How to be a good Buddha

Religion | As with other non-Christian religions, ‘practice really hard’
by Sophia Lee
Posted 1/22/18, 04:22 pm

My best friend in Singapore, Jingwen, was a Buddhist. I still remember the three incense sticks sticking out of a red altar by the door to her apartment. Sometimes, I would catch Jingwen’s grandmother step out of the house carrying fresh incense sticks, the tips glowing coal-red and unfurling a pungent, woody odor. She would hold the incense sticks up to her chest with both hands and bow before the altar several times, praying for luck and health. 

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FG/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images

A temple in Little Tokyo

Religion | Understanding why a Buddhist memorial service for miscarried and aborted babies appeals to hurting human hearts
by Sophia Lee
Posted 1/16/18, 12:50 pm

I must have walked past the Japanese Buddhist temple in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, several dozen times and never noticed it until the day I set up an interview with the temple priest there. That was in December, when I was working on a story about the Japanese Buddhist practice of observing memorial services for unborn babies (see “Guilt Offerings”).

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Imaginechina via AP

Yuletide Yiwu

China | Most of your Christmas decorations likely came from one city in China
by June Cheng
Posted 12/21/17, 02:49 pm

Eaves hung up with twinkling colored lights, an artificial Christmas tree dressed with ornaments of miniature Santas and singing angels, stockings hung by the chimney with care. It’s Christmastime, the music sings, it’s the most wonderful time of year.

Yet the decor livening up your living room, draped in shopping malls and transforming office buildings, most likely come from a place far from the chill of the North Pole, a land where Christmas is foreign but money-making opportunities are not.

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