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Buddhism in the News


Sunday, May 31, 2009

Buddhism Inc.

DISCLAIMER: This post is heavily laden with sacrasm and satire about the odd ways that people use Buddhist buzz words that are apparently "en vogue" with our pop culture to sell just about anything. In the end this subject doesn't have any real impact on my own practice but it is a bit annoying and silly in the absurd so I thought I'd write about it in a humorous way. I hope you enjoy!!


Do you ever get tired of carrying your karma around all over samsara jumbled up in your mind? Do you wish that there was a better way to organize your karma as you travel along the middle lane of the Dharma Highway to Nirvanaville? Well, your worries. are. over!! The future has arrived!!

Introducing the Nirvana Organizer Bag from Zen Class Travel!!!! You say you've never heard of Zen Class but have heard of First Class and Business Class when traveling? No problem!! Zen Class is where Zen Buddhists meditate at their home on the desired day of travel. They meditate so deeply that they are magically transported through the air to their desired destination!! It's as easy as that--so why not become a Zen Buddhist today to take advantage of the Zen Class Travel!! But WAIT!!! Don't order yet--when you order now you'll also get the Nirvana Organizer Bag. You don't want to be caught in Nirvanaville without IT.

James: So there you have it--another odd yet humourous example of a product being sold using Buddhism. The Zen Class Travel isn't an actual class of travel on airlines but the name of the company who pumps out this "Nirvana Organizer Bag." I was just having fun with the name. :) Actually, I find the whole thing quite odd really but then again I've learned over and over not to be surprised by samsara. Now if I could just find one of those "Easy Buttons" advertized on t.v. Let me explain, the advertisement for my non-American t.v. viewing audience.

There is an office materials supply company here called, "Staples" and they have a new advert up that explains that shopping with them is like pushing an, "easy button" which easilly takes care of any office needs you might have. So all this has me wondering how long it will be before some scam/business man comes out with an, "easy button" to enable instant enlightenment--with one simple, easy, push of the button!! No, I clearly realize that it's not that easy--I was just playing with the concept of this cross-pollunation between Buddhism, business and advertising.

~Peace to all beings~

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L.B. said...

James, you are a great traveller on the road of life. Have a great evening.

Jody Wieler said...

Wow, marketing is shameless, what can I say.. :)

They'll do anything to get that emotional response to the product. A good funny to start my day!

Riverwolf, said...

Whether specifically Buddhist or not, it seems there are already plenty of hucksters trying to sell an "easy button" for all sorts of spiritual shortcuts!

PeterAtLarge said...

Haha, James! I like to think the Buddha would have a good laugh.

They call him James Ure said...


That was a nice thing to say...thank-you very much and thank-you for reading the blog. :)


Yeah no kidding--anything for the almighty dollar. Glad I could make you laugh. :)


Ain't that the truth!! Snake oil salesmen.


I AGREE!! I think the Buddha had a good sense of humor. How can you be enlightened without some kind of a sense of humor?

forest wisdom said...

This one bugs the crap out of me; I know it shouldn't, but...sigh....

The other day I was in a favorite coffeehouse of mine and I saw an ad that said that if I bought their coffee I would be (and here is exact wording of the ad) "achieving bean nirvana." I stood there and shook my head and thought to myself, "Do they have any idea what nirvana even means?" Achieving bean "cessation"? What the hell?

Anyway, great post James, as often here. Keep up the good practice.

Mountain Humanist said...

As much as I agree with your post, I couldn't help but click on the bag's link and then I thought, yeah, OK it is a cool bag and it seems cheap. I didn't buy it but there I am.

They call him James Ure said...

Forest Wisdom:

Yeah sometimes I can laugh at it and other times may annoyance and anger get the best of me.

Mountain Humanist:

Nothing wrong with buying the bag. It's just odd how they try to sell stuff using words that they think they know the meaning of but don't. And I think it points to the larger issue of educating people about our beliefs.

So many it seems don't even know for example that we don't worship Buddha. I'm not advocating missionary work but I think we need to talk more about our beliefs when the opportunity arises to raise awareness. Not to brag or say we are better or go on and on about how "peaceful" one might be but just some basic education.

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