Is Buddhism in the West Cultural Appropriation?

6 thoughts on “Is Buddhism in the West Cultural Appropriation?”

  1. A very wise, knowledgeable, and skillful response to this question. I’d like to add just one small point to this comment: “So the category of “Western Buddhist” contains both converts from various backgrounds (chiefly white) and heritage Buddhists from Asian backgrounds.”
    Buddhism has now been around long enough in western countries that there is a growing number of 2nd (and some 3rd) generation children of devout white converts (and, side note, even increasing youth camps for them across the US) – thus, those of non-Asian heritage who are raised Buddhists and maybe add interesting little additional wrinkles to the questions of Buddhist culture, cultural ownership, interpretation of that culture- and what is appropriation or how long or to what degree can it be considered such as generations continue?

  2. I’ve practiced since 1980 at Green Gulch Zen Center where I lived for 6 months. Each year following I found a new place to practice for 3 mo. I did this for a few decades often returning to Green Gulch. Sesshin is a special time and Oriyoki was a treat I dearly miss. You might consider asking Tempa Lama of Olma Ling (Cleavland) questions about the Bon. He was educated at the famed Menri Monastery. Arlene Lueck at S.F. Zen Center and Green Gulch is a good contact. Kokyo at Santa Cruz Zen Center has a great mind. These 3 have a good connection with the average and the highly qualified …. I like what you are doing.

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