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The Religious Affiliation of Buddhist filmmaker
Nathaniel Dorsky


"Speaking for the Buddha?: Buddhism and the Media" (Conference Proceedings), 8-9 February 2005, Lipman Room, Barrows Hall, UC Berkeley, California; Sponsored by the Center for Buddhist Studies and Institute of East Asian Studies, UC Berkeley, with the support of Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai America (http://ieas.berkeley.edu/events/2005.02.08-09.html; viewed 7 September 2005):
The last speaker on this panel was Nathaniel Dorsky, a Bay area filmmaker and author of Devotional Cinema (2003). Dorsky observed that many in the Western world are interested in the "genius" of the Dharma teachings, not necessarily in Buddhism itself. He intends that his silent 16mm films "create a state of prayer," not by treating Buddhism as a subject but by expressing "the view that comes from Buddhism." Dorsky read passages from his book, speaking of the longstanding link between art and health as well as the transformative potential of watching film. He also spoke of the limitations of film when it is subservient to theme or dependent on "the ornament of language," which can describe a world but not see it. When images are not allowed to be as themselves, Dorsky argued, this makes for "subtle distortion" diluting the primordial strength that film can offer.

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Webpage created 7 September 2005. Last modified 14 September 2005.
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