About the UBA

The University Buddhist Association of UCLA is an organization of students, faculty, and community members who come together to learn about and practice Buddhism. We're a non-sectarian Buddhist group that welcomes all Buddhists and non-Buddhist of all faiths and traditions.

If you're interested in learning more about the UCLA Buddhist community, please come to our meetings.

When: Every Tuesday, 5:30 - 7:00pm
Where: University Catholic Center
633 Gayley Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90024

If you have any questions, please contact us at uba.ucla.online@gmail.com.
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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Buddhist poet wins the Keats-Shelly Award

As an English major, this is quite interesting. The poem he writes is about a boy who looks within himself and finds a mouse holding a picture of him. This idea, of the story within the story, one that loops infinitely with no particular ending, is such a wonderfully complexing idea. If you would like to read the award-winning poem, click the link below.

"The Keats-Shelley prize, an annual award for the best poem on a Romantic theme, has for the first time this year gone to an explicitly Buddhist poet, DH Maitreyabandhu.


He also pointed to Keats's refusal to accept Christianity on his death bed, despite attempts by his friend Joseph Severn. "Keats was very steadfast – a very Keatsian word - in not accepting that, and I think that was incredibly brave of him. It's always one of the things I've admired in him particularly, not just because I don't believe myself, but to hold the line when he had days left – there is something steadfastly humanitarian about him," said Motion.


Maitreyabandhu, who has been ordained into the Western Buddhist Order for 19 years, says his love of poetry began when a friend read him the first five verses of Shelley's Mask of Anarchy. "It was one of those moments when one discovers a new ecstasy, even a new calling. After that I read and re-read Shelley and Keats obsessively and used their poetry to explore ancient Buddhist themes," he said. "WH Auden says, 'The primary function of poetry, as of all the arts, is to make us more aware of ourselves and the world around us'. The same could be said of Buddhism. I approach poetry, in one sense as a distillation of peak experience, in another as finding meaning in the everyday – as such, poetry has become another strand of my spiritual practice."

Read full article and poem.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Form is Emptiness, Emptiness is Form

If you have been coming to our weekly dharma talk meetings, this will sound familiar to you. We have been going over the heart sutra during the last few weeks and this is one of the core concepts: "Form is emptiness, emptiness is form". Though I don't like the title of this article (because I don't necessarily think it's a paradox), here's a brief summary of what "Form is emptiness, emptiness is form" could possibly mean from The Times of India.

"By way of explanation, we are asked to observe a cup or any other container. Is the cup empty when it does not contain any liquid or solid in it? We say yes, it’s empty. But is it really empty? No, it’s not. It is full of air. Even when the glass is in a state of vacuum, it is not empty. It still contains space, radiation and maybe light.

Therefore the Buddhist point of view differs from convention. The cup is always full of something or the other. To describe it philosophically, the cup is devoid of its inherent existence. It has come into existence because of many other conditions coming into play."
Read full article.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

“Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian”

A new book called "Without Buddha I Could Not Be a Christian" by Paul F. Knitter.

“Am I still a Christian?” he asks in his new book. It is a question posed over the years by others, including some unhappy officials in the Vatican. But the question, he writes, is also “one I have felt in my own mind and heart.”

“Has my dialogue with Buddhism made me a Buddhist Christian?” he writes. “Or a Christian Buddhist? Am I a Christian who has understood his own identity more deeply with the help of Buddhism? Or have I become a Buddhist who still retains a stock of Christian leftovers.”

The Fragrance of the Rose

The Fragrance of the Rose

The disciples were absorbed in a discussion of Lao-tzu's dictum:
"Those who know, do not say;
Those who say, do not know."

When the master entered,
they asked him what the words meant.
Said the master, "Which of you knows the fragrance of a rose?"
All of them indicated that they knew.
Then he said, "Put it into words."
All of them were silent.

from One Minute Wisdom by Anthony DeMello

Sunday, October 18, 2009


For those of you still following this blog, I have decided to keep updating it. I probably won't have the time to update it daily, though I really wish I could. I found out about this really neat movement called LoveMine that aims to bring awareness to the injustices happening in Burma. It's a "collaborative movement of people and organizations committed to peace, hope and freedom for the people of Burma". Please visit their site and see what they're all about.

Last year, UCLA held its annual "Mighty Mic" concert with proceeds donated to help the refugees in Burma. Maybe this year, UCLA will once again be one of the rally points for Burmese freedom.

Image from LoveMine.