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    Three Lives: The Buckshot Bodhisattva Paid Member

    In the tiny western Colorado town of Paonia, a weekly Buddhist meditation circle includes a carpenter, an editor, a metal worker, a photographer, and as it so happens, the father of conservation biology. When the meditation periods conclude, it is the biologist who often asks, only half in jest, "Did anyone get enlightened)" Even in the pursuit of nonself, Michael Soulé can't entirely escape his ambition, which has driven him all his life. More »
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    Three Lives: Intro Paid Member

    In the following section, three lives cross the Buddha's path in unexpected ways: an ex-outlaw biker takes refuge; a septugenarian cabaret dancer ponders death; and a rifle-toting biologist views the dharma through his crosshairs. More »
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    Three Lives: Dancing on the Edge of Existence Paid Member

    At the age of seventy-four, I find myself increasingly preoccupied with thoughts of approaching old age and death. It seems that almost every morning when I scan the obituary page of the New York Times, I find that more than half of those who died the previous day were my age or younger. I feel lucky in a way. When I go out for my morning run along the shores of the Hudson River, I think of today as an “extra” day, one I did nothing special to deserve and have no reason to expect. But there it is, a gift, not to be wasted. More »
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    Embracing Everything Paid Member

    Trudi Jinpu Hirsch is a Zen priest and a chaplain. For many years she was a professional ballet dancer, and she holds the grace of her training in the ease and animation of her movements. Yet there is an inchoate tension to her presence, a feeling of opposites pulling apart or trying to come together, a dancer's yearning for flight tempered by a sobering gravity. Hirsch's life, through dance and spiritual practice, has been a struggle to balance these two apparent extremes. More »
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    Three Lives: From Biker To Buddhist Paid Member

    The first thing I noticed about James Veliskakis was the serpentine tattoo running down his arm. We were sitting silently next to each other during a ten-day meditation retreat. We later met at other Buddhist events, and I chatted with him about his passion for bicycle racing, his devotion to Buddhist practice, and his work mentoring youths—but he told me nothing about his pre-dharma life. More »
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    God Is In the Zendo Paid Member

    “It is said,” Father Robert Kennedy began, “that Sanghanandi, the seventeenth Indian patriarch, was born speaking. He spoke only about Buddhism. Someone to avoid.” Kennedy, a Jesuit priest and a Zen teacher, was giving a dharma talk to a small group of his students in the basement of a Methodist church in Manhattan in 1995. I went because I found the idea of a Jesuit sensei exotic. Ten years after my first meeting with him in that church, I sit with Father Kennedy Roshi in the lobby of the Jesuit community at St. Peter’s College in Jersey City, New Jersey. Along with being a priest and a Zen teacher, Kennedy, who received his doctorate in theology from Ottowa University, is the chair of the Theology Department at St. Peter’s. A tall, quiet man of seventy-one, his white hair is typical of most of his fellow residents: a species of white-tufted Jesuits. More »