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I recently had the chance to visit the Buddhism exhibition at the British Library and it was a moving experience that took me back to my Sangye teacher training.


Photo: Paul Dobson

The exhibition — which runs at the British Library till Sunday, 23 February — amasses an incredible collection of art, manuscripts, devotional materials and even audio.

According to the British Library website:

Encounter the outstanding beauty of Buddhist manuscripts and artworks in the largest exhibition of its kind ever held at the British Library. Explore rare treasures from the Library’s collection including colourful scrolls, precious artefacts and stunning illuminated books spanning 2,000 years and 20 countries.

Meet the women whose stories are told through Buddhist scripture. Admire artefacts made by hand in a setting inspired by a Buddhist temple. From sacred texts written on tree bark, palm leaves and gold plates to exquisite silk scrolls of major sutras, follow the life of the Buddha and his previous incarnations. Find out how Buddhism was pivotal in developing writing and printing techniques, transmitting ideas and stories across Asia. Lose yourself in a natural soundscape.

Buddhism and yoga share many philosophical and spiritual connections. Naturally, it has been something that has attracted my interest and enriched my practice over the years.

In the past, I’ve blogged about my time at the Samye Ling Buddhist retreat in Scotland and the opportunity to visit Bhutan. These experiences connected me to Buddhism in a real way and brought it to life for me.

The core tenants of Buddhism — compassion, mindfulness, making effort for good — are applicable to our daily lives, regardless of our spiritual or religious views.

I urge you to visit the British Library if you have a chance, and immerse yourself in the powerful, transformative mindset of Buddhism.

Read more: Baldwin & Buddhism – summer reading, What ‘Om Mani Padme Hum’ means

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Photo: Paul Dobson