urthona magazine
                Buddhism and the Arts

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URTHONA 30: 21st Anniversary Issue

Now out - December 2013


URTHONA Issue 29 Winter 2012/13
Folllow this essays page link for more detail

Dramatic Insight

Making a crisis out of a drama? In this issue we are more interested in finding insight through drama. We go to the edge with Macbeth and learn about the workings of karma - as Vishvapani says 'Its power as a karmic tragedy is not simply that it shows a person reaping the results of their actions'; it also involves us in Macbeth's journey towards knowledge of his own self destruction. Modern theatre is often an experience of spectacle or at best an exploration of raw emotion. George Hunka suggests that the contemplative ritual space of the church (I am sure he would include the shrine room) suggests what is missing. Also here some powerful visual work from Sahaja, from photographer Natasha Lythgoe (whose work to me seems imbued with 'thusness' - the unfabricated way of things), and from painter of mystical landscapes Harold Mockford.

Ratnagarbha, editor

Issue 29, Features

  • Pure Drama: Ed Piercy, former director of Cambridge Arts Cinema with an in depth survey of Greek Tragedy on screen
  • Macbeth's Karma: Well known Buddhist author Vishvapani looks into the heart of darkness in Shakespeare's Macbeth, and finds the workings of karma revealed.
  • Theatre as Sanctuary: Distinguished American Theatre Critic, George Hunka writes on the contemporary theatre as a sacred space
  • Metal Man Turns to Paint: sculptor Sahaja now works in paint
  • Re-embodiment through Photography: fine art photographer Natasha Lythgoe aims to overcome the dualism of mind and body in her work
  • A Life Lived in Poetry: Vidyadevi interviews Sangharakshita about his love of poetry
  • Portfolio: Harold Mockford, painter of mystical landscapes
  • Plus ten pages of poetry, reviews and news


Featured in previous issues of Urthona:

  • Keith Grant, Peter Redgrove, William Blake [issue 3]
  • Redon, Cecil Collins, Angels, Duende [issue 4]
  • Sangharakshita, Shakespeare [issue 5]
  • William Blake, Milton, Chintamani, Ananda [issue 7]
    Nietzsche, Apollo, Dionysus, Ginsberg, Shakespeare [issue 8]
  • Kathleen Raine, William Stafford, Dante, Shamanism, Keith Grant,
    Karunachitta [issue 9]
  • Robert Bly, Keats, Mary Oliver, Caspar David Friedrich [issue 11]
    Natalie Goldberg, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Sahaja, Jane Hirshfield,
    Dhammarati [issue 12]
  • Basho, Japanese cinema, Zen landscapes, Jan Garbarek [issue 13]
    Seamus Heaney, Robert Bly, Urgyen Sangharakshita, Brancusi, Tate Modern,
    Jazz, Conceptual art, Blake & the Buddha, JS Bach [issue 14]
  • Rodin, Allen Ginsberg, Emily Dickinson, Verdi, Kathleen Raine, Twenty
    Great Dramas [issue 15]
  • Gary Snyder, Robert Bly, Aboriginal Architecture, The Green Man, Walt
    Whitman [issue 16]
  • Camille Paglia, Piet Mondrian, Piero della Francesca,
    Sangharakshita and Kathleen Raine, Keith Grant, A new Renaissance? [issue 17]
  • Rumi, Path of Love, Pablo Neruda, Handel [Issue 18]
  • Anish Kapoor, Ursula Le Guin, Iris Murdoch, Jane Hirshfield, William Stafford, Kathleen Raine,
    Northern Lights trilogy, Robert Gray, Twenty great writers, Beverly Farmer [Issue 19]
  • Gary Snyder on the sacred mountains of the Ear East, Aboriginal art of the Kutjungka people, Andy Goldsworthy, Resurrecting Dragons, Coleridge and the Goddess, Stravinsky's 'Rite of Spring', Harold Mockford, Whenua - The Maori and the Ecology of Placental Connection, The Myth of the Light and the Bodhi Tree, Winds of Wyoming [Issue 20]
  • American Dreams:- Awake: William S. Kowinski on a western U.S consortium,
    Mind Mirror: Buddhism at the Movies, We're Wise Apples: Interview with Michael McClure, Chögyam Trungpa: discovering elegance, Leslie McCormick on Dance/Movement Therapy at Boulder's Naropa University, Susan Murphy on dream and koan
    [Issue 21]
  • Art, Awareness and Social Change:- Artist Aaron Matheson on Palestine - images from the wall; Gary Snyder - Danger on Peaks: Snyder's new collection - an in depth review; Schiller, Neruda, and the poetics of revolution - two very different figures who thought that art can change society profoundly; Engaged Haiku - Ken Jones on an interesting development in this ancient far Eastern form; Aquasculpture in Australia - Ephemeral sculptures in Australia .[Issue 22]
  • Dharma of the moving image:- Ethics and Aesthetics: Documentary maker Padmadhara; Robert Bresson - visionary film maker: Ed Piercy; A view from the screen: Danavira recalls experiences in the old Picture Palaces.; A Festival of Mind: The International Buddhist Film Festival; Drunk on Mountains and Poetry: Ratnagarbha on Korean Cinema; Not giving it a name: Gary Gach reflects on just what makes a movie 'Buddhist'.[Issue 23]
  • Indian Odyssey
    Between the Pipes - Insightful photographs of a Mumbai shanty town by Robert Clark; Satyajit Ray - Ed Piercy on the great master of modern Indian cinema; Trust Your Guru and Sing - Vandanajyoti explores the ancient Indian singing tradition of Dhrupad; Chameleon - Julia Dale on the 'myriad minded' poet and thinker Rabindranath Tagore; Ways of Seeing - Padmadhara on a project in which children photographed their own lives; Ajanta Caves - Richard Lannoy discusses the Buddhist caves of Ajanta; Anjolie Menon - Painter Anjolie Menon profiled by Sue Bonnett; Sanskrit Poetry - Dhivan interviews the distinguished translator Andrew Schelling. [Issue 24]
  • Celtic Connection
    Tristan and Iseult - the ancient romantic story; Taliesen for the 20th Century - how Ted Hughes belongs in the Bardic tradition; Hermit Island - A new Haibun by Jane Whittle; Love and Zen - Hebridean Zen poet Kevin MacNeil; John Meiron Morris - The distinguished sculptor; Irishness; Poetry; Film. [Issue 25]
  • Landscapes of the Mind (Issue 26)
    Poet of Absence and Presence - very possibly the foremost nature poet at work in Scotland today, John Burnside, is inspired by the same coastal landscape of Fife. He evokes the mystery and strangeness both of the wilderness and of familiar domestic objects. Inner Landscapes - Talented Buddhist painter Vidyalila (Val Hudson) who works in a more abstract manner: her wonderful paintings evoke moods of physical landscape and inner spiritual moods at the same time. Golden Sunflowers - Vishvapani discovers how Buddhist ideas have influenced Western culture over the last 200 years, from Wagner to John Cage.
  • Art Ecology & Insight (Issue 27)