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Home Newsletters So-Wide Space March 2012 - Report from Richard Gombrich

So-Wide Space March 2012 - Report from Richard Gombrich

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So-Wide Space March 2012
Report from Richard Gombrich
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Report from Richard Gombrich

For the second year running, I have given an introduction to Buddhism to graduate students at the University Dept. of Education, most of whom will go on to become school teachers of Religious Studies.  Professor Liam Gearon took up a position in that department in the autumn of 2010 and asked if we might do this annually; we were happy to agree.  On 7th February he brought a party across to our office.  This is a very easy audience to speak to, because on the one hand they are interested and on the other they arrive knowing very little on the subject.  What they really need is a framework which they can then fill in with detail according to their individual interests.  I therefore give them a rapid outline of the place of Buddhism in time and space, how it is like or unlike other religions, its range of internal variety and the main reasons for its appeal these days.  I briefly explain why I founded the OCBS and what it aims to do.

This year I began by speaking for nearly an hour and then Susan provided coffee and biscuits.  I warned them that during the break they should prepare questions.  There were plenty of those; they filled the second hour, and could probably have gone on much longer.  Though I do not offer them a general bibliography, I often suggest further reading when I reply to a question.  It is perhaps a pity that we do not get more opportunities to deliver this kind of introduction.


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