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Urthona 33FROM THE EDITORIAL:  Friendship is being talked about again. But do we really know what it is? And what really has it got to do with the arts – for haven’t artists, after all, always been ec- centric loners who bordered on egomania, and most of what they express about friendship merely an idle dream? In this issue we will be dwelling not on failures but on some shining examples of artistic friendship throughout the ages. For a start there is our wonderful cover image. Tobias and the Angel is a story from the apocryphal book of Tobit, for centuries an image of friendship with the divine. What emerges is a sense that friendship can be seen as a vital dimension of artistic endeavour and of creativity in general. Highlights include:


9Haunting art photograph by new rising star, Brighton based Buddhist photographer Sahajatara: “At first, I went to amazing places to take pictures; wild coastlines, old cemeteries… and  what I quickly noticed was that, for me, the celestial light revealed herself most clearly through the ‘ordinary’, through ‘every common sight’. I would go to an abandoned church, and as I was leaving, see a red serviette in the gutter looking exactly like a rose…”


mimikhalvati-smalllAn in-depth article on his poetic mentorship with Mimi Khalvati by Maitreyabandhu. Mimi is widely regarded as one of the best poetry mentors in the country, and is also a fine poet herself. Maitreyabandhu reveals a process of excavation in which her mentorship was invaluable in finding what he really wanted to say: ‘dig into it, knock into it with your spade…’


tara-smallWe have an in depth interview with talented Buddhist artist, Amitajyoti . She is half way through a major commission of a diptych for the Birmingham Buddhist Centre, showing the Buddha with two different disciples, a monk and a nun. She also talks about her dynamic abstract works including a series which explores ‘Union with the Beloved’.



guistav-dore-heavenA friendship forged in Hell. From the editor Ratnagarbha there is a substantial essay about the friendship between Dante and the poet Virgil. Dante in real life was deeply inspired by the writings of Virgil and felt that he had learned his ‘fine tuned style’ from this great man. What makes Dante special is that he drew on this connection to create an imaginary friendship of surpassing depth and interest, as the two poets travel through the heights and the abysses of the medieval universe, in Dante’s Divine Comedy.



Issue 32: ‘The Goddess Issue’

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Awaking the Sleeping Beauty – renowned writer on the goddess image Anne Baring

Interview with a High Priestess – Sorita De Este is a mistress of ritual and a devotee of western esoteric traditions.

Gravity and Grace – The remarkable mythical installations of nagasiddhi

Kuan Yin – Jan Osborne explores the symbolism of Kuan Yin, the female Bodhisattva of compassion.

Portfolio: Marissa Roth – Pulitzer Award winning photojournalist Marissa Roth’s latest project, Infinite Light: A Photographic Meditation on Tibet.


31 Thumb

Issue 31 Cover

Issue 31: The Story Telling issue

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The Burden of the Prophet – on Jung’s Red Book by Peter Abbs

Interview with a Master Storyteller – Kevin Crossley Holland on storytelling

The Unasked Question – Ratnagarbha on the Quest for the Grail

Poetry – Mimi Khalvati, Geoffrey Hill, Vishvantara, Chris Hardy

Masterpiece – the Iliad – Dharmavadana on the greatest story ever told

Cover Story  – Stefanie (Ine) Grewe’s wonderful book illustrations


30 ThumbIssue 30: Our 21st Birthday issue

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Who was Urthona – an introduction to the vision of William Blake by Ratnagarbha

Pride and Prejudice – a Buddhist response by Richard Winter

Ten Best Movies of all time – by our movie editor Ed Piercy

Mariko More – timeless light, a remarkable installation artists with Buddhist influences

Thirteen Ways – of making poetry a spiritual practice by Maitreyabandhu

The art of Sukhi Barber – remarkable Buddha sculptures in Bronze


 29 ThumbIssue 29: Dramatic Insight

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Pure Drama – Ed Piercy, former director of Cambridge Arts Cinema with a survey of Greek Tragedy on screen

Macbeth’s Karma – Buddhist author Vishvapani looks into the heart of darkness in Shakespeare’s Macbeth

Metal Man Turns to Paint – sculptor Sahaja now works in paint

Fine art photographer Natasha Lythgoe overcomes the dualism of mind and body 

A Life Lived in Poetry – Vidyadevi interviews Sangharakshita about his love of poetry

Portfolio: Harold Mockford – painter of mystical landscapes


 28 ThumbIssue 28: The Psychogeographical issue

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Ratnagarbha on Reimaging the Buddha for the 21st Century

The Wild Places – interview with Robert Macfarlane

An introduction to Urban psychogeography

Cover feature – Janette Kerr painter of Shetland seascapes

Travels in Buddhist central Asia by Rijumati

Poets Go East – interviews with David Constantine, Penelope Shuttle and Fiona Sampson


27 ThumbIssue 27: Art, Ecology and Insight

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Buddhism, Blake and Deep Ecology by Ratnagarbha

Hollywood goes Eco – Ed Piercy on movies from the last fifty years that have engaged with ecological issues

Buddha in the Forest Vishvapani, explores the neglected topic of the Buddha’s relationship with nature

The Religion of Art – Dhivan on ‘The Religion of Art’ by Sangharakshita

Fine Art –  Susan Derges’ remarkable ‘photograms’

Wabi Sabi – Vajradarshini discovers the beauty of imperfection


26 Thumb Issue 26: Landscapes of the Mind

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Poet of Absence and Presence – profile of John Burnside by Ratnagarbha

Inner Landscapes –  Buddhist abstract painter Vidyalila (Val Hudson)

Golden Sunflowers – Vishvapani on how Buddhist ideas have influenced Western culture from Wagner to John Cage

Bleakness and Joy – the landscape paintings of Joan Eardly by Jenna Mills

Blood Tender – extract from new novel set in Sicily by Rachel Ingrams

25 ThumbIssue 25: Celtic Connection

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Tristan and Iseult – the relevance of this ancient romantic story, by Dr Thomas Jones

Taliesen for the 20th Century – how Ted Hughes belongs in the Bardic tradition by Anne Skea

Hermit Island – A new Haibun by Jane Whittle

Love and Zen – Hebridean Zen poet Kevin MacNeil

John Meiron Morris – The distinguished sculptor

Irishness in cinema a case of misrepresented identity by Ed Piercy


One thought on “URTHONA SHOP subscribe to CURRENT ISSUE buy back issues

  1. Pingback: The Moon Thief in Urthona – Mark Cooper

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