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Document: /pub/academic/religious_studies/Buddhism/DEFA/Dharmanet/dharma.faq FTP site: Last modified: January 28, 1996 by Barry Kapke =============================================================================== DharmaNet Frequently Asked Questions =============================================================================== Table of Contents 1. What is DharmaNet 2. What does DharmaNet offer 3. What does it cost 4. How can I access DharmaNet 5. What conferences does DharmaNet provide 6. How can I retrieve files 7. How can I join DharmaNet 8. What is the Dharma Book Transcription Project 9. How can I help 10. Credits ============================================================================== 1. WHAT IS DHARMANET DHARMANET is an international computer network, operated by volunteer BBS system operators (sysops) and organized to promote and facilitate communication between Buddhist communities, groups, and individuals, in sharing and putting into practice Buddhist teachings and values. Through telecommunications and computer technologies, DharmaNet is intended to provide a means for Buddhists, of various schools, lineages, and practices, to be able to communicate with each other and to form a global online sangha or community of Buddhists. To this end, DharmaNet hopes to facilitate neutral ground for communication and sharing amongst Buddhist monks and nuns, lay teachers, laypractitioners, and scholars, as well as interested non-Buddhists. It is further hoped that we can all learn from each other, and support each other in human community, minimizing and/or transcending artificial boundaries of age, gender, race, ability, class, nationality, or religious sect. DharmaNet is a public service of DharmaNet International, a not-for-profit charitable and religious organization. 2. WHAT DOES DHARMANET OFFER Through this voluntary networked interlinking of individual BBS sites across the world, information resources can be shared. These resources include: ECHOMAIL: ~~~~~~~~ Topical public message areas, known as "echomail conferences" or "newsgroups", are multi-site discussion groups where people can engage in discussions, post announcements, read reviews, etc. To suggest an analogy, echomail conferences might be likened to a global interactive magazine, or perhaps the visual equivalent of a conference call. DharmaNet presently shares international message areas devoted to BUDDHIST PHILOSOPHY AND PRACTICE, ZEN, THERAVADA, VAJRAYANA, PURE LAND, WOMEN IN BUDDHISM, AHIMSA, MEDITATION, TIBETAN NEWS, ENGAGED BUDDHISM, BUDDHIST STUDIES, RACE & BUDDHISM, DANA, SILA, BUDDHISM IN THE WEST and others. E-MAIL: ~~~~~~ Private mail ("e-mail") can be transmitted electronically from one person at a DharmaNet site to another person or persons at another DharmaNet site or sites; such communications are usually significantly faster than that afforded by postal mail. FILES: ~~~~~ Many DharmaNet sites also provide BBS users with free access to text files, or, in some cases, graphics, audio, or multimedia files. DharmaNet, in cooperation with an international host of Dharma teachers and authors, as well as selected publishers, provides free "electronic editions" of many canonical Buddhist texts, books, articles, newsletters, bibliographies, Dharma talks, etc. NEWSLETTER: ~~~~~~~~~~ DharmaNet also publishes an electronic journal called GASSHO (ISSN: 1072-2971). GASSHO is a non-sectarian publication and does not represent any particular school of Buddhism. GASSHO is available for download or file request (f'req) from most DharmaNet sites, or, for Internet access, from the DEFA archives at (See "How Can I Retrieve Files" below). Internet users can also receive GASSHO in mailing list format, by sending a request to Barry Kapke at asking to receive the newsletter. WEB INFO RESOURCES: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ DharmaNet maintains a World Wide Web (WWW) information center, where Buddhist centers, organizations, and not-for-profit projects can freely disseminate information from one global access repository. The URL for the DharmaNet WWW page is: If you'd like information added to this resource, or if you have a resource that you'd like linked in here, please email Barry Kapke ( OTHER PROJECTS: ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ DharmaNet is also working on developing an online database of Buddhist events and listings of monasteries and lay Dharma centers, that may be interactively accessed via Internet, DharmaNet BBS sites, and/or subscription to the DBase- compatible files for use in your own database program. This project is called DharmaBase and will be available in 1996. DharmaNet is also investigating how best to create a hypermedia online encyclopedia of Buddhism that will be called Dharmapedia. This resource will include text, images, sounds, and will allow the user to define subject parameters for online queries. This project will begin development in 1997. These are some of the resources that are shared amongst DharmaNet sites, and which are available at no cost (other than possible toll phone connection costs) to any individual who has a computer, communications software (many of which are available free or at low cost), and a modem. DharmaNet is also in the process of developing parallel service to the vast Internet community which links educational and research institutions across the world. There is no direct Internet access to DharmaNet at this time, but it is hoped that this will not be long in coming. There is currently a DharmaNet file library (DEFA) accessible by anonymous FTP, Gopher, or WWW, and an automated mailing list for the DharmaNet e-journal, GASSHO. Future development will include establishing a DharmaNet organizational domain, and gating the echomail conferences for Usenet distribution. 3. WHAT DOES IT COST All DharmaNet resources are offered freely in the Buddhist tradition of //dana//. The sysops who operate DharmaNet BBS sites have volunteered to offer these services to their local communities and they do so at their own expense. If you appreciate these services, please help support your local online Dharma center through contributions or by volunteering to help. It is this tradition of giving, of freely-offered generosity, that has kept Buddhism alive for over 2500 years. If you are a Sysop interested in bringing DharmaNet to your community, and helping to further the global network, all DharmaNet resources are made freely available to you; the only costs involved are those your telephone company charges you. All DharmaNet asks is that you do not pass these costs on to your users; you may, however, accept freely-offered contributions. DharmaNet sysops (and other friends and supporters of the work that DharmaNet provides) are invited to join our Affinity program -- a long distance provider which guarantees *at least* a 10% savings in your phone costs over whatever provider and program you are currently participating in. Moreover, Affinity will donate 5% of your reduced monthly bill to DharmaNet International. DI feels very proud to participate in this method of fundraising as it truly benefits everybody! For more information about participating in the DharmaNet International Affinity partnership, write to: DharmaNet International Affinity Program, PO Box 4951, Berkeley CA 94704-4951. 4. HOW CAN I ACCESS DHARMANET DharmaNet now has BBS sites throughout much of the United States, as well as in Canada, England, Ireland, Spain, Germany, Sweden, Holland, Australia, Singapore and Hong Kong. To find a DharmaNet site in your vicinnity, or to become a DharmaNet site, please contact the International Coordinator, Barry Kapke. Direct dial-up BBS access (download the file DHARMA.ZIP): BODY DHARMA ONLINE Richmond, CA (510) 234-9431 Barry Kapke, sysop Anonymous FTP: FTP cd /pub/academic/religious_studies/Buddhism/DEFA/Dharmanet get E-mail to any of the following addresses: INTERNET: (Barry Kapke) FIDONET : Barry Kapke, 1:125/33 Postal communication should be directed to: Barry Kapke, Director DharmaNet International P.O. Box 4951 Berkeley, CA 94704-4951 5. WHAT CONFERENCES DOES DHARMANET PROVIDE Echoes currently under the DharmaNet umbrella include: AHIMSA Practice & Philosophy of Non-Violence BUDDSTDY Buddhist Studies BUDDWEST Buddhism in the West DANA Dana DHARMA Buddhist Philosophy & Practice (MANDATORY) DHARMANET DharmaNet "Town Hall" DHARMASYS DharmaNet Sysops (MANDATORY) DN_FILES DharmaNet File Distribution Network DN_SERVE Dharma Services & Classifieds HAIKU Haiku Poetry HUM_RACE Race & Buddhism MEDITATION Meditation PEACEWORK Engaged Buddhism PURELAND Pure Land Buddhism SAKYADHITA Women in Buddhism SANGHA Int'l Dharma Events & Community Listings SILA Buddhist Ethics THERAVADA Theravada Buddhism TIBET_NEWS Tibetan Buddhism & Culture VAJRAYANA Vajrayana Buddhism VINAYA Monastic Community ZEN Zen Buddhism DharmaNet conferences are not currently accessible via the Internet. Messages *can* be sent *TO* DharmaNet from the Internet. For those who have information that they'd like to distribute through DharmaNet, email can be sent as follows: To post a notice about: E-mail to: -------------------------------------- ----------------------------- Dharma-related products or services (commercial or not) Retreats, dharma events, on-going class or sitting schedules, etc Dharma center or organization listings for DharmaBase (please use the dbase format suggested in Gassho and at DEFA) News or events of particular interest to Buddhist women News or events of particular relevance to Tibet News or events of political or cultural interest to Buddhists or about Engaged Buddhist and peacework activities Academic positions available, grants, conferences, publications, etc. relevent to Buddhist Studies In 1996, DharmaNet will begin experimenting with using the mailing list format as a way of promoting dialogue between Internet and DharmaNet. SAKYADHITA-L will be one of the first "tests". An announcement as to how to subscribe to this list will be posted to INSIGHT-L in Spring 1996. 6. HOW CAN I RETRIEVE FILES Internet: ~~~~~~~~ DharmaNet International maintains the largest online file library of Buddhist resources on the Internet. Users who have Internet access through commercial providers, campus networks, or other Internet access sites, can retrieve DharmaNet files via "anonymous ftp." To access the DharmaNet Electronic File Archive, FTP to Login as "anonymous" and use your Internet mail address as your password. Change directory ("cd") to the subdirectory "pub/academic/religious_studies/ Buddhism/DEFA". (The capitalization in the pathnames is significant.) Use GET (or MGET) to retrieve whatever files you are interested in. Similarly, you can use PUT to deposit files at the DharmaNet Electronic File Archive. Files should be deposited in the subdirectory "pub/academic/religious _studies/Buddhism/DEFA/Inbound". Any file intended to be added to the DharmaNet Archive must be accompanied by a message from the author or publisher granting permission for electronic publication to DharmaNet International. DEFA is also accessible via gopher to and via World Wide Web. The URL (Universal Resource Locator) for DEFA is: dharma/defa.html DharmaNet: ~~~~~~~~~ DharmaNet File Libraries are BBSs which have all DharmaNet files available for download or file request (f'req). Official DharmaNet File Libraries include: BODY DHARMA ONLINE THE BODHI TREE THE ELECTRIC FOX THE FUNNY PAPERS Richmond, CA Boise, ID Memphis, TN Lodi, NJ 1-510-234-9431 1-208-327-9916 1-901-327-1008 1-201-478-8476 Other DharmaNet BBSs may have all or some files available. The DharmaNet nodelist (DHARMLST.###) is a weekly compilation of all current DharmaNet BBS sites. 7. HOW CAN I JOIN DHARMANET To become a DharmaNet BBS, obtain the file DHARMA.ZIP from BODY DHARMA ONLINE or any other DharmaNet BBS. Read the DharmaNet Policy document, as this file contains important information about what you can expect from DharmaNet and what will be expected of you. Also in DHARMA.ZIP is a text file entitled DHARMA.APP which contains all the information we need to know to approve your system for a node number. To avoid confusion (or overwriting someone else's application), please rename the application to LASTNAME.APP, where LASTNAME is the first eight letters of your last name. There are then TWO steps that must be followed in order for your application to be processed. (1) Complete the application and send it via netmail file-attach to either: Barry Kapke at BODY DHARMA 1-510-234-9431 -- (Fidonet 1:125/33), or to your local DharmaNet HUB; AND === (2) Print out the completed application, affix your legal signature to it, and mail (yes, Postal Service) it to the International Coordinator: Barry Kapke BODY DHARMA ONLINE P.O. Box 4951 Berkeley, CA 94704-4951 8. WHAT IS THE DHARMA BOOK TRANSCRIPTION PROJECT Many of the files that are distributed via DharmaNet as electronic books were originally conventionally published books by publishers such as the Buddhist Publication Society in Sri Lanka or Amaravati Publications in England, or print journals like SAKYADHITA and INQUIRING MIND. With the permission of the original authors or publishers, these texts are reformatted for electronic media and distributed freely via computer networks such as DharmaNet and Internet. Much of this reformatting involves tremendous amounts of volunteer labor -- manually retyping (or scanning) these texts, making adjustments to better fit the electronic format, proofreading and comparing, cataloging and archiving, etc. The goals of the Dharma Book Transcription Project include eventually making the Pali, Chinese and Tibetan canons available for online access, as well as helping to preserve texts that have gone out-of-print. Additionally it seeks to catalog and to make accessible teachings by contemporary lay and monastic teachers. In order to respect copyright, we will only consider the following materials: 1. Books which, on the publisher's information page, explicitly give permission to copy and redistribute on a dana basis 2. Books for which the author and/or publisher has given explicit permission for transcription and redistribution on DharmaNet. We always need volunteers to help with this project. If interested, please contact Barry Kapke (BODY DHARMA ONLINE). 9. HOW CAN I HELP One of the greatest helps right now is just spreading the word that these electronic resources exist and helping others who may not be computer literate to learn how to avail themselves of the electronic sangha. I really would like to see "global access" become a reality for all people and it seems like one of the biggest hurdles right now is overcoming people's fear of the technology. So, on a local level, you can certainly help by helping other people in your area to use these tools. Also, if you belong to a Buddhist center, please let them know about DharmaNet. I'd like to eventually see Dharma centers around the world linked in and talking to each other, but again one of the largest hurdles is the technology. If you can help others understand the value of online communication and encourage them to participate in any way -- via Internet or by setting up a DharmaNet BBS site -- that would be of immense value to the online Dharma project. There are numerous opportunities in DharmaNet to help and to serve -- transcribing books, proofreading, contacting authors or Dharma centers, compiling resource listings, reviewing books, writing articles for //Gassho//, sharing insights and investigation on the Insight mailing list or DharmaNet conferences, and much more. The cultivation of generosity is fundamental to Buddhism -- and it is one of the central operational principles on which DharmaNet is organized. Please help us practice generosity and build global community together. And, of course, financial or material offerings are another way you can help support the work of DharmaNet International, helping us to grow, and to expand our offerings of free Buddhist resources. We have a growing need for a powerful dedicated computer with substantial storage space and memory and a high-speed modem to handle DharmaNet/Internet connectivity, a dedicated phone line, and minimally a SLIP/PPP account with an Internet provider. We need a fax. A scanner would be helpful. We need a Postscript printer to resume hardcopy publication of //Gassho//. We need stamps. In terms of basic operational needs, everything helps. DharmaNet needs help to let people know of our existence. Our "Adopt-An-Ad" program needs sponsors -- individuals or organizations willing to make a commitment to donate the cost of one advertisement per year (or contribute towards those costs). Currently, we have an ad in //Tricycle// magazine. We need sponsors to continue this advertisement, and to reach other Buddhist readerships. DharmaNet International is *still* needing help in organizing as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation. This is an important step. If you can help, or offer advise, with respect to legal questions, accounting, fundraising, etc, we need you. May this work benefit all beings. May all beings be happy and free from suffering. In gassho, Barry Kapke 10. CREDITS Special thanks to: John Nguyen (cnguyen@arthur.CV.COM), for the inspiration and the initial prototype for this FAQ. Fonzy Broussard, sysop of THE THREE JEWELS BBS in Los Angeles, who provided the spark that led me to create DharmaNet. John Bullitt, sysop of ACCESS TO INSIGHT, for his boundless enthusiasm and invaluable help. All the DharmaNet sysops whose generosity and lovingkindness enables DharmaNet to exist. The Board of Advisors of DharmaNet International -- Robert Aitken Roshi, Amaro Bhikkhu, Carl Bielefeldt, Bhikkhu Bodhi, Ven. Thubten Chodron, T. Matthew Ciolek, Roger Corless, Rev. Karuna Dharma, Christina Feldman, Gangcen Tulku Rinpoche, Ven. Maha Ghosananda, Josph Goldstein, Joan Halifax, Ven. Ayya Khema, Anne C. Klein, Jack Kornfield, Ven. Karma Lekshe Tsomo, Jacqueline Mandell, Ken McLeod, Andrew Olendzki, Charles S. Prebish, Alan Senauke, Christopher Titmuss, and Thanissaro Bhikkhu -- for giving us roots and keeping us grounded in Dharma. ============================================================================== end of file -- Barry Kapke, Director | "All that we are | INTERNET: DharmaNet International | is the result of | WWW: P.O. Box 4951 | what we have thought." | /dharma/defa.html Berkeley, CA 94704-4951 | (BUDDHA) | DIAL-UP BBS: (510) 234-9431


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