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2023-12-29T16:38:18+00:00

Grace

Grace, a native of Toronto, Canada, was born into a unique blend of religious backgrounds – her father a devoted Won Buddhist and her mother, a hybrid of Won Buddhism and Presbyterianism. Raised amidst the teachings of Won Buddhism, Grace's exposure to its practices deepened during family trips to Korea. Although she initially attended the temple due to her parents, her true connection to the faith emerged during her university years.

2023-12-29T18:48:06+00:00

Kyle

Coming from a family with a strong history in Jehovah's Witnesses, Kyle experienced a strict form of Christianity until he left at 18, facing significant impact and trauma. In his 20s, he explored agnosticism and even atheism but felt an inescapable spiritual need akin to the necessity of exercising the body or educating the mind. Therapy introduced him to mindfulness through cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), laying the foundation for his interest in Buddhism.

2023-12-29T17:51:27+00:00

Steven

Steven resides in Bozeman, Montana, with his wife and 13-year-old son, accompanied by a couple of cats. Despite a professional background in science education and media production, Steven now primarily fulfills the role of a house spouse, dedicating himself to supporting his family, Sangha community, and Dharma community. A digital artist and enthusiast of photography and outdoor activities, Steven finds joy in creating art and contributing to the beauty of the world. His commitment to fostering relationships and communities stems from a deep desire to bring more beauty into the world. However, he acknowledges the challenges he faced in establishing connections earlier in life, crediting his Dharma practice for helping align his aspirations with skills and abilities.

2023-12-29T16:30:14+00:00

Gou Yuan Fa Shi

Guo Yuan Fashi is a Buddhist monk trained in Chan Buddhism. In 1985 he first encountered Master Sheng Yen’s teachings while attending a seven-day retreat in New York. He then decided to become a disciple before finally leaving his job in Toronto, Canada, to become a monk in the Chan tradition. He was ordained in 1987 in Taiwan. For over twenty years, he accompanied and became translator to Master Sheng Yen in various Chan meditation retreats in the United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, Switzerland, Russia, and Mexico.

2023-11-27T13:20:17+00:00

Joann

I’m the Buddhist chaplain at Syracuse University. Which is an amazing thing for me, because I came here as a student when I was 18, and this is where I learned about Buddhism and got interested in Buddhism. And then to come back much later in my life after I retired from a job teaching in the city schools here to to return to the very place that I used to hang out all the time.

2023-11-27T22:37:14+00:00

Karen

And I met Allen Ginsberg there, and I met the Grateful Dead. Allen Ginsberg and, you know, Gregory Corso and he Wolfman a Bob Dylan. I just hung out there and Allen Ginsberg came up to me one day and he said, Do you look like you could try some meditation like Merton? And I said, Oh, okay. And so he brought me to a little room and there were other people there. And he said, You know, you just sit and breathe.