Style Guide

Spelling and Grammar

Proofing language: American English

Foreign language terminology:

  • Use English translations of non-English words when possible to make concepts accessible to widest audience. Example: “emptiness” rather than śūnyatā
  • When using non-English terms, use appropriate language symbols (diacritics) to indicate pronunciation. Example: jñāna
  • When introducing a new non-English term, use italics for the first use and provide the English translation in parentheses or in an explanatory sentence.
    • Example: This school of Buddhism is known as Mahāyāna (“Great Vehicle”). Mahāyāna practices include…
    • Exceptions: Common borrowed words (Buddha, Buddhist, etc.) need not be italicized on the first usage.


  • Quotation marks: Use double quotation marks (“”) first, with single quotes (‘’) as second level. Example: The author writes, “We need to create a ‘new story,’ a fundamental shift in how we view our world.”
  • Commas: Use the “Oxford comma” before the final item in a list. Example: Researchers are applying neuroscience techniques to study human perception, cognition, emotion, and social behavior.
  • Semicolons: Use semicolons to separate two related sentences (no comma splices), or to delineate listed phrases that include commas. Example: The article describes methods for identifying community needs, strengths, and resources; building cohesion among local leaders and community organizations; and managing conflict.
  • Cutting quotes: “First part… Second part.”
  • Period goes after quote for specific “word”. “Period goes inside quote for clause or full sentence.”

Formatting and Organization

  • File Title: Include first initial, last name, abbreviated title, and the word “Draft.” (e.g., “GDayley, Economic Utility, Draft”)
  • Text: Times New Roman, 12pt, single spaced, indent new paragraphs
  • Layout: 1” page margins, page numbers in top right corner
  • Headings: Number all headings and subheadings (these will be removed in publication). Examples: (section 1), 1.1 (section 1, subsection 1), 1.2.1 (section 1, subsection 2, part 1)
  • Web links: Web links may be included as in-text hyperlinks for online publications. E-books and print publications may transpose web links to footnotes.


  • Please cite all references to others’ writing, ideas, inventions, research, and spoken material using numbered, superscript footnotes.
  • Include full author and publication information in footnotes, using Chicago style. Examples:
    • Book: Sakyong Mipham, The Shambhala Principle: Discovering Humanity’s Hidden Treasure, (New York: Harmony Books, 2013), 121.
    • Journal Article: Holly Gayley, “Reimagining Buddhist Ethics on the Tibetan Plateau,” The Journal of Buddhist Ethics 20 (2013): 251.
  • For multiple quotations from the same source, give the full citation the first time and an abbreviated citation thereafter.
    • Abbreviated examples:  Mipham, Shambhala Principle, 121. Gayley, “Reimagining Buddhist Ethics,” 253.
    • Consecutive citations of the same work, after giving the full or abbreviated citation, may be denoted: Ibid., 255.
  • Be sure to cite using Chicago style for footnotes, not for a bibliographic entry.
    • Like this: Charles Eisenstein, Sacred Economics, (Berkeley: Evolver Editions, 2012).
    • Not this: Eisenstein, Charles. Sacred Economics. Berkeley: Evolver Editions, 2012.
  • Include page numbers for direct quotes from written materials. Page numbers should appear in the footnote citation.
  • Superscript numbers for footnote appear after punctuation.

Visual Materials

  • Please limit your use of visual materials such as charts, tables, and images, using text explanations when possible.
  • When including visual materials, indicate where the figure should appear by including a note in brackets in the text in your manuscript. Example: Fluctuations in GDP seem to occur independently of newer social-economic metrics such as Gross National Happiness. [Insert Figure 2 here]
  • Submit tables and charts in an appendix at the end of your article. Label visual materials “Figure 1,” “Figure 2,” etc. and include a brief title or explanation above each.
  • An illustration by our Creative Director accompanies all articles, essays, and blogs as a complementary artistic contribution to the journal. If you would like to explore possible illustration content for a piece, please contact the editors at the time of submission. We welcome the possibility of including sketches or photographs by authors as well. Please consult the editors prior to submitting supplementary images. Due to copyright law, we can only publish material owned by authors.

Additional Notes – Reader Accessibility

We encourage a high level of sophistication and scholarship in submissions; however, articles should be accessible to people who may not be experts in the author’s field. Specifically:

  • Authors should assume that readers can understand them (i.e., don’t repeat a point you have just made)
  • At the same time, don’t assume readers are familiar with specific schools of thought/academic fields. Define terms and concepts as appropriate.