The University of Toronto has launched The Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Centre for Buddhist Studies on its St. George campus, and appointed Frances Garrett the new director.
Alongside beginning a career as a bioethicist, I have interviewed people from Buddhist Jain, and Hindu traditions for my dissertation research. I am investigating end-of-life decision-making and the effect of migration, gender and vulnerability on healthcare access.
Nepal is a place full of opportunities to learn about religion, as well as humanity and its resilience. After the devastating earthquake, people continue their practice of the Dharma despite economic and political difficulties. Inspirational is one of the many things one could call this experience. My research in Nepal is not over but has just begun.
We visited caves at the Mogao and Yulin Grottoes, many of which are rarely open to the public. Dunhuang was a perfect site to negotiate issues of global vs. the postglobal. Interdisciplinary collaboration between international scholars of history, art, and religion should be encouraged.
Sitting in a shared Jeep, nearly thrown out the back with every turn, I held onto a metal bar to steady my body and sanity as we wove up a dusty mountain. I wondered, “What on earth am I doing in Sikkim?” Conducting my own research was not something I expected to be doing during my university career.
On the way to Myanmar I stopped in Japan to meet with scholars there studying Southeast Asia, Burmese Buddhism and Pali philology. In Myanmar I studied Burmese and also acquired numerous new materials crucial to my research, including an invaluable anthology of twenty-first century interpretations of Ū Nārada’s controversial writings.
Once we made it to India I understood why people love traveling. There is enjoyment in being in a new place and seeing a new culture. But maybe what is really best about traveling is that it helps you understand and appreciate yourself.