A quick PSA, because working in a New Age store I realize a lot of people don’t know this.  Keep in mind this is the simple version.

The fella on the left-hand side, that’s Gautama Buddha, the Buddha, the central figure in Buddhism.  Note that he is not considered a god, but a teacher and spiritual leader, the first to attain Enlightenment in his era.  Note also how thin he is.  This is because the Buddha fasted a lot.  He was born Siddhartha Gautama.  Buddha is a title, and not actually his name.

The fella on the right-hand side is not Buddha.  This is a common misconception in the West.  That is Hotai (or Budai or Hotei depending on the language), a Buddhist monk from China and folkloric hero.  Hotai is thought by many to be a Buddha, but he is not the Buddha.  Unlike Buddha, Hotai actually is revered as a god in Chinese folklore, although not in Buddhist practice.

This post is based on things I’ve been taught by my Buddhist coworker but if I forgot or mixed up something important and you are Buddhist and you notice, please let me know.

This has been an informational post.  Have a nice day.



radicalteen asked:

Hi! I'm working on creating an LGBT+ workshop for the teachers at my school, do you have any advice, tips, ideas, etc.?

These are some of the point important points I’ve found when working with teachers:

  • There are LGBTQ students in all classes. There are students with LGBTQ family members. There are LGBTQ teachers. Whether they’re out or not, they’re there.
  • With this in mind, I also try to encourage teachers to challenge any heteronormative biases. (Ironically, I’ve found that a lot of literature and presentations on LGBTQ education still assumes the reader/audience is straight.)
  • One thing I found particularly powerful was an example of how LGBTQ history is erased - I used the example of the “Lavender Scare” and the fact that more people lost their jobs (and lives) during McCarthyism from accusations of homosexuality than accusations of communist sympathies.
  • Remember: it’s not about sex, it’s about relationships. (Especially important for teachers who work with younger students.)
  • A lot of the teachers I worked with had a lot of questions about how to respond to student comments, insinuations, (possibly) inappropriate jokes and so on.

These are some of the resources I used:

Acting Out! Combating Homophobia through Teacher Activism edited by Mollie Blackburn, et al.

This is a collection of essays from teachers and teacher trainers in Ohio working together to combat homophobia in elementary and secondary education and teacher education.

The Right to be Out by Stuart Biegel

A really useful history of the legal precedents and protections regarding sexual orientation and gender identity in U.S. public schools.

Getting Ready for Benjamin: Preparing Teachers for Sexual Diversity in the Classroom edited by Rita Kissen

 A collection of more academic articles and q little denser with education jargon and queer theory, but a wealth of valuable information and ideas.

A Queer History of the United States by Michael Bronski

Very interesting history, although tended towards bi and trans erasure.

Transgender History by Susan Striker

Really fascinating history of trans issues in the United States since the 1900s.

"LGBT-Inclusive Language" by Michael Weinberg in The English Journal, 98.4 (2009).

I hope this is helpful. Hit me up with more questions if they come up!

So, school started on Tuesday, but we’ve been at work in the library for a few weeks now. I’m not sure if we’re making progress (or how I would even measure progress). The library has been used, up until now, as a de facto storage space. Aida Josefina, my library aide, and I have been going through all the boxes and shelves and piles of stuff. We have found things including: old trophies (most of which do not belong to our school), a large, broken TV, a box of Christmas decorations, at least two boxes of two year old sports schedules, a tan Member’s Only jacket, education catalogs from 2010-2012, enough old textbooks to supply at least two more schools, several broken computer keyboards, and two broken typewriters, among other things. 

Progress has been slow since every time we clear things out, more stuff is sent into the library (math workbooks, reading workbooks, and textbooks teachers aren’t using, and other random stuff people don’t want). 

Yesterday, Friday, I made some signs and library decorations so that I could start to envision what the library may someday look like (and also to make myself feel better).

May all sentient beings enjoy happiness and the root of happiness.
May they be free from suffering and the root of suffering.
May they not be separated from the great happiness devoid of suffering.
May they dwell in the great equanimity free from passion, aggression, and prejudice.
The Four Limitless Ones Chant - Pema Chodron - The places that scare you. (via iam-youis)