Baseball (and Buddhism?)

I’ve always liked baseball. I grew up a Mets fan (you gotta believe), and have always enjoyed sitting back and watching a game unfold. When people ask why, I usually say that it’s an outlet: an opportunity to get emotionally engaged in something that doesn’t, in the grand scheme of things, actually matter. Unlike religion, the environment, politics, or any of the many other things that I care about, the world doesn’t end if my team loses. And I appreciate that ability to get invested in something purely fun, without feeling like to fate of the world is riding on the outcome.

Now, thanks to Donald Lopez’s recent contribution to Tricycle Magazine, I have yet anther reason to appreciate the sport. Writing in a style reminiscent of Gary Snyder’s Smokey the Bear Sūtra, Lopez crafts a text in which the Buddha explains how he created baseball to teach the impermanence and unpredictability of life. It’s a humorous piece, but he makes a good point: despite being driven by statistics and despite players’ carefully orchestrated workouts, baseball games, seasons, and careers can still turn on the smallest decisions or mistakes. The result is that the game remains unpredictable for both players and fans.

Just ask Bill Buckner.

Buddha Takes the Mound by Donald S. Lopez Jr

New Address, New Look

My little corner of the web now has a new, more permanent home: This blog has been up for almost two months now, and it seemed high time to clean things up a little. It also turns out that Random Ruminations, my old blog title, was already being used by several other people. A google search for The Lost Yak, on the other hand, comes up empty, allowing me to claim squatter’s rights. While the old address ( will redirect to the new site, you may want to change any bookmarks you have. If you have already subscribed to e-mail updates, I don’t think you have to do anything.

Along with the new address, I decided it was time for a little spring cleaning, and have re-done the blog’s appearance. Same basic color scheme and layout as before, but a little more refined. For those who are interested, I took the picture in the fall of 2005, near Thamé Gompa in the Khumbu region of Nepal.

And lest you think that I’ve only been worrying about these trivial details, there is more content in the pipeline as well. I’m currently putting the finishing touches on a post about Tibetan visionary practices and Batman. Yes, Batman does Thögal. You can expect the full post sometime next week.