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Essays on Karma, for Kindle

Both an introduction, a kind of ‘Karma for dummies’, and a look at the philosophical questions that the doctrine of karma calls up. You will learn to question what you have always thought about karma as well as deepen your understanding of the Indian and Buddhist background of this teaching central to much of Asian [The rest of this article]


Best Women Spiritual Teachers

Gender is very much in the news these days. Feminism is losing its negative connotation and the internet is making it possible to empathize with girls and women all over the world fighting for basic liberties. (*) I am a feminist and was raised one. Strong women are so normal in my family, that my [The rest of this article]


It takes a while to get comfortable with the richness of allowing yourself to just be with your own mind. It's a little like meeting an old friend for the first time in years. There may be some awkwardness in the beginning, not knowing who this person is anymore, not knowing quite how to be with [The rest of this article]

H.P. Blavatsky

Blavatsky’s relevance in the 21st century

H.P. Blavatsky was my first spiritual love. As a 19-year-old I drank in her Key to Theosophy (*) and loved the idea of finding a common core between all religions, science and philosophy. I thought that this had to be attempted, for the welfare of humanity. Grand ideas - and very unrealistic. While the commonalities between religions should be valued [The rest of this article]


Matthieu Ricard – compassion and altruism

The great Tibetan Buddhist Monk and philosopher Matthieu Ricard was in Amsterdam yesterday to talk about his new book - the Dutch translation of the French 'Plaidoyer pour l’altruisme'. It will be available in English this summer as Altruism: The Power of Compassion to Change Yourself and the World, in a shortened version (by the [The rest of this article]


Karma, Meditation, Books, Awareness and More

Every once in a while I do an overview post of all the spiritual stuff I have put online in the past period. It turns out that the last time I did this was almost a year ago, so this post is long overdue. This post is also the basis for my newsletter. Most importantly of course [The rest of this article]

2014 design

2014 – what a year!

What do you know, just when I have the energy to tell you all that I am too busy to blog - I post one thing after another. So this is my habitual end-of-year blogpost. This was a busy year for me. I bought a house and moved into it, I lost my grandmother, I [The rest of this article]


Bodhicitta is the mind of enlightenment. It not merely the wish to help all sentient beings attain enlightenment, it is the firm decision to take every single one of them to that state. This is obviously as inclusive as it gets. EVERYBODY is included in bodhicitta and the corresponding Bodhisattva vow. And the bodhisattva vow is taken by [The rest of this article]

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Meditation and self-knowledge

I sometimes wonder what my life would have looked like if I had started meditating at 25, because that is roughly the age that I made my first attempt. At that point it was not too hard for me to follow the instructions in a meditation-booklet and so I concluded that I did not need [The rest of this article]

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Did you ever think that organisations, corporations and institutions have a life of their own? David Loy was in Amsterdam yesterday to talk to a university students and (mostly Zen) Buddhists about his book: Money, Sex, War, Karma: Notes for a Buddhist Revolution. In Buddhism the main cause of human problems are the three poisons. They [The rest of this article]


A Dummy’s Guide to Spiritual Hitchhiking

I was challenged to make this article (*) 'A dummies guide to spiritual hitchhiking'. Although I write a lot about spirituality online, I have never hitchhiked a day in my life. My brother on the other hand hitchhiked all the way from Amsterdam to Pakistan, and back. AND he met sufis and other spiritual folk on [The rest of this article]