Practitioners in lineage


Lama Thupten Rinpoche

Lama Thupten was always drawn to meditative practices, even before they were formally defined as such. He lived in many places throughout his life, but one of the most significant was Selma, Alabama. Thupten witnessed the brutality of racism firsthand, but he also found solace in nature and solitude. Even as a child, he spent a lot of time alone, observing the world around him. 


David M

Raised in a Catholic family, David went through the sacraments and attended a Catholic college, but his move to California after college exposed him to diverse perspectives, sparking a more intentional spiritual exploration. Professionally, David has dedicated the majority of his career to nonprofit management, focusing on contemplative and mindfulness education, environmental education, and their intersections.


Ani Palmo

Ani Palmo, the director and resident teacher of Song San Gampo Buddhist Center in Lakewood, Ohio, shares her spiritual journey from a Catholic upbringing to discovering Tibetan Buddhism. Growing up in Garfield Heights, a suburb of Cleveland, Ani Palmo navigated her Catholic education with a sense of dissatisfaction, grappling with the teachings and treatment of women within the faith. Her exploration led her through various spiritual traditions, including New Age practices and Zen Buddhism in Japan, but she found them lacking in depth and spiritual fulfillment. It was during a retreat in Southern Thailand that she encountered Theravada Buddhism, which resonated deeply with her, offering a methodical approach to developing inner qualities.



Elinore's journey through spirituality was one of exploration, introspection, and profound experiences. Raised in the Presbyterian tradition, she found herself drawn to the teachings of Jesus, particularly the essence of compassion and empathy encapsulated in the golden rule. However, she grappled with the disconnect between her religious upbringing and its application in her daily life. Her spiritual quest led her down various paths, including a period of agnosticism where she delved into the research of near-death experiences. This exploration sparked a realization within her that there was something beyond the material realm, igniting a thirst for deeper understanding and connection.



In Colleen's quest for spiritual fulfillment, the path she embarked upon was marked by unexpected twists and profound encounters. Initially drawn to meditation as a means of relaxation, she found herself inexplicably captivated by the rich tapestry of Buddhist teachings. Her journey took a remarkable turn when she stumbled upon a Tibetan temple, a kaleidoscope of colors and imagery unlike anything she had encountered before. There, she encountered a high-level teacher whose gaze seemed to penetrate her very soul, igniting a sense of familiarity and comfort she couldn't explain.



Background Liz is a Korean American who was born and [...]