I first became interested in meditation after reading Be Here Now and Autobiography of a Yogi in the early ’70’s. For the next 20 years, my spiritual path was meandering and haphazard, and included several dead ends, until I bought a one-way ticket to India in early 1991 with the intention of meeting His Holiness the Dalai Lama. I became a student not only of His Holiness, but also of Kirti Tsenshab Rinpoche and Lama Zopa Rinpoche during the year I spent studying at Tushita Meditation Centre in Dharamsala and Kopan Monastery in Kathmandu.
After returning to the US, I worked at various positions within Lama Zopa Rinpoche’s organization, the Foundation for the Preservation of the Mahayana Tradition – director of Vajrapani Institute, co-director of FPMT International Office, FPMT Center Services Coordinator – and also completed several long meditation retreats over a six-year period.
I took preliminary ordination vows with Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 2003 and novice ordination in 2004 with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and since 2006 I’ve been teaching at various FPMT centers around the globe, in North and South America, India, Nepal, Australia, and New Zealand. I’m also a visiting teacher for the Liberation Prison Project, having taught in prisons in the US, Colombia, Australia, and New Zealand.
I am authorized by the FPMT to teach at both the Foundational and In-Depth level, and to lead long retreats. I am also a certified teacher of Cultivating Emotional Balance, a secular program in dealing with emotions developed by Alan Wallace and Paul Ekman at His Holiness the Dalai Lama’s request.
In March of 2013, I relocated to Canada, to become resident teacher at Gendun Drubpa Centre in central British Columbia, and in December of 2015 I returned to Vajrapani Institute in California as resident teacher, although I will still tour and teach at other Dharma centers from time to time. In addition to my spiritual practice, I am passionate about prison reform, animal rights, bringing an end to human trafficking and other modern forms of slavery, and equal rights for all human beings and all species.