Documentary filmmaker Edward Burger will screen and discuss his film, One Mind, a rare cinematic portrait of life inside one of modern China’s most austere and revered Zen Monastic communities. This event will take place on Wednesday, February 8, 5:00pm, in Taylor Hall, room 203. It is free and open to the public.
Burger lived and studied with Zen communities throughout China for over 15 years and was the first Western filmmaker to be granted such unprecedented access to the daily rituals and traditions practiced in this remote mountain monastery. In harmony with the land that sustains them, the monks at Zhenru Monastery operate an organic farm, while at the heart of this community, a group of cloistered meditators sit in silence for eight hours every day. But more than a portrait of life within this monastic community, One Mind is an experiment in Buddhist filmmaking. Burger set forth to craft a documentary that is not ‘about’ Buddhism, but rather a ‘Buddhist film.’ Taking inspiration from traditional Zen stories and lessons told to him by elder monks and teachers at Zhenru monastery, the film explores the trials and challenges of becoming wiser, kinder human beings.
Burger studied Religious Studies at The College of Wooster and studied Buddhism abroad with Antioch University in Bodh Gaya, India. During that time he travelled to Myanmar and was temporarily ordained as a monk for one month’s time, a common tradition for young Burmese men of his age - and a pivotal experience that fueled his fascination of and commitment to East Asian culture and spiritual practices. He lived in china for 12 years. His first documentary feature, Amongst White Clouds took him to the Zhongnan Mountains. His other films include A Life in Shadows and Vows and Alms. He currently has two feature documentaries in production, One Mind and River Dhamma.
Sponsored by Asian Studies Program with co-sponsorship by the Office of Dean of Faculty, Religion Department, Department of Chinese and Japanese, Film Department and the Office of Religious & Spiritual Life.
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