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Teachers and Contributors

GUIDING TEACHERS
TEACHERS AND CONTRIBUTORS TO OUR OFFERINGS

Guiding Teachers

Catherine McGee – Insight Tradition, Diamond Way

A long term student of the Diamond Approach, Catherine has been teaching Insight Meditation internationally since 1997. She is a member of the Gaia House teacher council, and since 2014 has been collaborating with Rob Burbea in shaping and teaching Soulmaking Dharma. Her teaching emphasizes embodiment and working with whatever hinders us from living our deepest knowing in the world.

Chas DiCapua – Insight Tradition

Chas DiCapua

Chas has been practicing Buddhist meditation for almost 30 years. He has trained with Burmese meditation masters, western monastics of the Thai Forest tradition and senior western vipassana teachers. A graduate of the four-year joint Insight Meditation Society / Spirit Rock Teacher Training Program, he teaches retreats at Insight Meditation Society and at various centers and sanghas throughout the country. Chas explores how the dharma can be practiced in relationship, including how the masculine and feminine energies manifest in relationship, in spiritual practice, and in the world.

James Baraz – Insight Tradition

James Baraz

James Baraz is a founding teacher of Spirit Rock Meditation Center. James started the Community Dharma Leader program, the Kalyana Mitta Network, helped create the Heavenly Messengers Training Program and is teacher-advisor to the Spirit Rock Family program. James has been leading the online course Awakening Joy since 2003. In recent years, he has been focusing the application of Dharma to the climate crisis.

Kaira Jewel Lingo – Vietnamese Zen and Insight Traditions

Kaira Jewel Lingo

A Dharma teacher and ordained nun of 15 years in Thích Nhất Hạnh’s Order of Interbeing, Kaira Jewel Lingo is now based in Colombo, Sri Lanka. She leads retreats internationally, offering mindfulness programs for educators, parents and youth in schools, in addition to activists, people of color, artists and families, and individual spiritual mentoring. A teacher with Schumacher College and Mindful Schools and a guiding teacher for One Earth Sangha, she explores the interweaving of art, play, ecology and embodied mindfulness practice and is a certified yoga teacher and InterPlay leader.

Mark Coleman – Insight Tradition

Mark Coleman

Mark is an inner and outer explorer, who has devotedly studied mindfulness meditation practices for three decades. He is passionate about sharing the power of meditation and has taught mindfulness workshops and meditation retreats in six continents for the past twenty years. Mark is a senior meditation teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center and has taught there since 2000. Through his organization Awake in the Wild, he shares his passion for integrating meditation and nature.

Susie Harrington – Insight Tradition

Susie Harrington

Susie Harrington teaches meditation nationwide and is the guiding teacher for Desert Dharma, which serves many communities in the Southwest near her home in Moab, Utah. She has trained in the Insight tradition since 1989, and in 2005 was invited into teaching by Jack Kornfield, Joseph Goldstein, and Guy Armstrong. She was an outdoor professional for over 30 years, including years as a river guide, mountaineering guide, and backcountry ranger, and now finds her greatest delight in sharing her love of the dharma and the natural world.

Lama Willa Miller – Tibetan Tradition

Lama Willa Miller

Willa B. Miller, PhD is the Founder and Spiritual Director of Natural Dharma Fellowship in Boston, MA and its retreat center Wonderwell Mountain Refuge in Springfield, NH. She was authorized as a dharma teacher and lineage holder in the Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism after twelve years of monastic training and two consecutive three-year retreats. She is editor, author and translator (respectively) of three books: The Arts of Contemplative Care: Pioneering Voices in Buddhist Chaplaincy and Pastoral Work (2012), Everyday Dharma: Seven Weeks to Finding the Buddha in You (2009), and Essence of Ambrosia (2005).

Teachers and Contributors to our Offerings

Thanissara – Mahayana and Theravada Traditions

Thanissara trained was a monastic in the Ajahn Chah Forest Tradition for 12 years. She’s led retreats since 1988, and co-founded Dharmagiri in South Africa and Sacred Mountain Sangha based in California. She has an MA in Mindfulness-Based Psychotherapy from the UK, and is author of several books, including Time to Stand Up: An Engaged Buddhist Manifesto for Our Earth — The Buddha’s Life and Message through Feminine Eyes.

Dan Siegel, MD

Daniel J. Siegel, MD, is the executive director of the Mindsight Institute and founding co-director of the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center. A graduate of Harvard Medical School, Dr. Siegel is a New York Times bestselling author of several books including Mind, The Mindful Brain, Parenting from the Inside Out, Aware, and the internationally acclaimed bestselling textbook The Developing Mind, which has been utilized by a number of organizations including the US Department of Justice and the Vatican. Dr. Siegel’s publications for professionals and the public have been translated into over 40 languages.

Noliwe Alexander – Insight Tradition

Noliwe Alexander has been a student of Vipassana meditation for close to 20 years. She is a Life & Business Coach dedicating both her coaching & Dharma practice to the POC, LGBT, At Risk and Elder communities. Noliwe is a teacher in training with Spirit Rock and an assistant teacher on CDL6. Noliwe is a wisdom keeper and humbled by the presence of her ancestor’s spirit that lives within and walks beside her.

David Loy – Sanbo Zen Tradition

David Robert Loy is a professor, writer, and teacher in the Sanbo tradition of Japanese Zen Buddhism. A student of Yamada Koun and Robert Aitken, he was authorized to teach in 1988 and leads retreats and workshops nationally and internationally. He is author of EcoDharma: Buddhist Teachings for the Ecological Crisis and A New Buddhist Path: Enlightenment, Evolution, and Ethics in the Modern World, and he is co-editor of A Buddhist Response to the Climate Emergency. He is also director and vice-president of the Rocky Mountain Ecodharma Retreat Center.

Renee Lertzman

Renee Lertzman is an applied social scientist with expertise in environmental engagement and climate communications. Informed by her practice in the Insight tradition, she teaches and consults in the emerging field of climate psychology and is author of Environmental Melancholia: Psychoanalytic Dimensions of Engagement. Learn more about Renee’s work at ReneeLertzman.com

Pennie Opal Plant – Yaqui, Mexican, Choctaw, Cherokee and European

Pennie Opal Plant is one of the co-founders of Idle No More SF Bay, a co-founder of Movement Rights and a signatory of the Indigenous Women of the Americas Defending Mother Earth Treaty. She has worked for over 35 years to ensure that the sacred system of life continues in a manner that is safe, sustainable and healthy. Her mother is Yaqui and Mexican, her father undocumented Choctaw, Cherokee and European. No members of her family have ever lived on a reservation. She lives in unincorporated Contra Costa County and sees the Chevron refinery in Richmond, California every day.

Adam Lobel – Shambhala Tradition

Adam Lobel, PhD, Harvard University, is a scholar of philosophy and religion and a longtime teacher in the Shambhala tradition. A speaker on ecology and spirituality at the United Nations, he was part of the first delegation of Buddhist teachers invited to the White House. He leads ecodharma workshops is a Greenfaith fellow, and active in ecopsychology and ecological and social justice movements. Adam’s teachings focus on Great Perfection Tibetan Buddhism, modern phenomenology, and inoperative studies. As a founding practitioner-educator at the City of Bridges High School, he has a longstanding interest in progressive contemplative education, philosophy as a way of life, and transformative pedagogy. A professor of Buddhist and phenomenological psychology, he is curious about a cultural and political therapeutics for a collapsing society.

Yanai Postelnik – Insight Tradition

Yanai Postelnik has been engaged in full-time dharma practice and service since 1990. His practice and teaching are inspired by the Thai forest tradition and nourished by time spent in the natural world. Yanai has been teaching retreats around the world for 20 years. He serves as a guiding teacher of Gaia House, England and a core faculty member of Insight Meditation Society, Massachusetts. He is actively involved in Extinction Rebellion protests in the UK.

Myokei Caine-Barrett – Nichiren Tradition

Myokei Caine-Barrett, Shonin, first encountered Buddhism in 1963. She has been practicing the Lotus Sutra ever since. In 2002 she began training to become a priest. She became head priest and guiding teacher of the Nichiren Buddhist Sangha of Texas in Houston, also known as Myoken-ji Temple, in 2007. Myokei Caine-Barrett has active prison and hospice ministries and deeply committed to healing our culture. She is currently bishop of the Nichiren Shu Order of North America.

Ron His Horse is Thunder – Standing Rock Sioux

Ron His Horse is Thunder is is a member of the Hunkpapa-Lakota Oyate. He served as the tribal chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe from 2005 – 2009. Ron is the great-great grandson of One Bull, the nephew and adopted son of Sitting Bull, the Hunkpapa Lakota Nation Chief. He served as president of Sitting Bull College (formally Standing Rock College), as a commissioner for the Higher Learning Commission for the North Central Accreditation for Schools and Colleges and as a member of the boards of the American Indian Higher Education Consortium and the North Dakota Tribal College Association. In 2002, President George W. Bush appointed him as Chairman of the President’s Board of Advisors on Tribal Colleges and Universities; he continues to serve today. Former Chairman His Horse Is Thunder received his juris doctor degree in 1988 from the University of South Dakota, School of Law. In 1985, he earned a bachelor of science degree from Black Hills State University. Former Chairman His Horse Is Thunder is married to Deborah Wetsit-His Horse Is Thunder.

Session Teachers

Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi – Theravadan Tradition
Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi

Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi is an American Buddhist monk and translator of Pali Buddhist texts. He is also the founding chair of Buddhist Global Relief, an organization dedicated to helping communities worldwide afflicted with chronic hunger and malnutrition. He was appointed editor of the Buddhist Publication Society (in Sri Lanka) in 1984 and its president in 1988. Ven. Bodhi has many important publications to his credit, either as author, translator, or editor, including the Buddha — A Translation of the Majjhima Nikaya (co-translated with Ven. Bhikkhu Nanamoli (1995), The Connected Discourses of the Buddha — a New Translation of the Samyutta Nikaya (2000), and In the Buddha’s Words (2005).

rev. angel Kyodo williams – Zen Tradition
angel Kyodo williams-175

Rev angel Kyodo williams is a teacher, author, activist, master trainer and leader. She is co-author of Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love, and Liberation and author of Being Black: Zen and the Art of Living With Fearlessness and Grace. Williams is the Spiritual Director of the meditation-based newDharma Community and founder of the Center for Transformative Change in Berkeley, California and is also credited with developing fearlessMeditation, fearlessYoga and Warrior Spirit Training. More at the Center for Transformative Change.

Bonnie Duran – Insight Tradition

Bonnie Duran has been practicing mindfulness meditation since 1982. She has taken teachings from western teachers including Joseph Goldstein and Marcia Rose, as well as Tibetan teachers Venerable Tsoknyi Rinpoche and Lama Zopa Rinpoche. She is one of the founders of The People of Color Sangha in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and in Seattle, Washington; is a graduate of the Spirit Rock teacher training program and Community Dharma Leader 3 training program at Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Bonnie is also involved in Native American spiritual practices and traditions. She is a contributor to Hilda Guitierrez Baldoquin’s book, Dharma, Color and Culture: New Voices in Western Buddhism (Parallax), and has written for the Turning Wheel Journal of Engaged Buddhism..

Sebene Selassie – Insight Tradition

Sebene Selassie is a dharma teacher and transformational coach. She began studying Buddhism over 25 years ago at McGill University where she received a BA in Comparative Religious Studies and Women’s Studies. She has an MA from the New School where she focused on race & cultural studies. ​For over 20 years she worked with children, youth, and families nationally and internationally for small and large not–for–profits and is the former Executive Director of New York Insight. Currently she serves on the board of the Barre Center for Buddhist Studies and is a meditation teacher for the 10% Happier App. ​ She is a graduate of the Community Dharma Leader (CDL4) program at Spirit Rock and is training as a retreat teacher with her primary teachers, Thanissara and Kittisaro. ​​Sebene is a three–time cancer survivor..

Donald Rothberg – Insight Tradition

Donald Rothberg is a member of the Teachers Council at Spirit Rock and teaches regularly at East Bay Meditation Center. He has practiced Insight Meditation since 1976, and has received training in Tibetan Dzogchen and Mahamudra practice. Since he was in his early 20s, he has been deeply committed to connecting social change and spiritual practice, and has written extensively on socially engaged Buddhism, including The Engaged Spiritual Life: A Buddhist Approach to Transforming Ourselves and the World. He has helped to guide six-month to two-year training programs in socially engaged spirituality through Buddhist Peace Fellowship, Saybrook Graduate School, and Spirit Rock.

Colin Beavan – Insight Tradition

Colin Beavan, PhD attracted international attention for his year-long lifestyle-redesign project and the wildly popular book and film, No Impact Man. He is a coach and consultant, ran for the US House of Representatives in 2012, is the founder of the No Impact Project, a board member of Transportation Alternatives, an advisory council member of 350.org, a guest professor at Sarah Lawrence College and a senior dharma teacher in the Kwan Um School of Zen. He is the author, most recently, of How to Be Alive: A Guide To The Kind of Happiness That Helps The World.

Kritee (Kanko) – Zen Tradition

Kritee (dharma name Kanko), is a Zen teacher, scientist, activist, dancer and permaculture designer. She directs and teaches Boundless in Motion Sangha in Boulder in the Rinzai-Obaku Buddhist lineage of Cold Mountain, is a co-founder and executive director of Boulder Eco-Dharma Sangha and co-founding teacher of Earthlovego. Kritee trained as an environmental microbiologist and biogeochemist at Rutgers and Princeton Universities. As a senior scientist in the Global Climate Program at Environmental Defense Fund, she is helping to implement environment and climate-friendly methods of small farming at large scales in Asia with a three-fold goal of poverty alleviation, food security and climate mitigation / adaptation.

Heather Lyn Mann – Thích Nhất Hạnh Tradition

Spiritual ecologist Heather Lyn Mann is a practitioner of Buddhism, sailing, and mindful advocacy. After earning a Master’s in Environmental Science from University of Wisconsin’s Nelson Institute, she founded and led Wisconsin’s Center for Resilient Cities—a not-for-profit mobilizing inner-city residents to restore natural beauty and function in damaged neighborhood landscapes. A mindfulness practitioner in the Plum Village tradition, Zen Master Thích Nhất Hạnh ordained Mann into his core community of practice—the Order of Interbeing. In 2007, Mann set sail on a six-year, 15,000-nautical-mile ocean voyage. Ocean Of Insight: A Sailor’s Voyage from Despair to Hope is the memoir of her spiritual voyage sailing in the company of the Great Atlantic Teacher. Back on land in 2014, Mann co-founded and led the International Plum Village Earth Holder Sangha — a mindfulness community working to awaken humankind’s great togetherness with the earth. Now a resident of greater-Charleston, SC, Mann co-launched Higher Ground — a collaborative of spiritual and thought leaders, scientists, artists, and others organizing to transform climate consciousness.

Lindsay Alderton – Insight and Tibetan Traditions

Based at the Ecodharma Centre in Catalonia, Lindsay works with activists from across Europe, designing and delivering programmes around engaged Buddhism and sustainable activism. In 2016 she helped launch the Ulex Project, an education centre which combines personal, inter-personal and political transformation. As an activist she’s worked with Reclaim The Power and the Dharma Action Network for Climate Engagement, and is is currently training in Social Presencing Theatre to combine somatic practice with her social change work. Lindsay practices with both Tibetan and Insight traditions and took refuge with Lama Zopa Rinpoche in 2002.

Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi – Theravadan Tradition
Ven. Bhikkhu Bodhi

Venerable Bhikkhu Bodhi is an American Buddhist monk and translator of Pali Buddhist texts. He is also the founding chair of Buddhist Global Relief, an organization dedicated to helping communities worldwide afflicted with chronic hunger and malnutrition. He was appointed editor of the Buddhist Publication Society (in Sri Lanka) in 1984 and its president in 1988. Ven. Bodhi has many important publications to his credit, either as author, translator, or editor, including the Buddha — A Translation of the Majjhima Nikaya (co-translated with Ven. Bhikkhu Nanamoli (1995), The Connected Discourses of the Buddha — a New Translation of the Samyutta Nikaya (2000), and In the Buddha’s Words (2005).

Joanna Macy – Cross Tradition
Joanna Macy

Gaian Teacher Joanna Macy PhD, is a scholar of Buddhism, general systems theory, and deep ecology. A respected voice in the movements for peace, justice, and ecology, she interweaves her scholarship with five decades of activism. As the root teacher of the Work That Reconnects, she has created a ground-breaking theoretical framework for personal and social change, as well as a powerful workshop methodology for its application. She is author of many books, most recently Active Hope: How to Face the Mess We’re in without Going Crazy and the revised edition of Coming Back to Life. More at JoannaMacy.net.

rev. angel Kyodo williams – Zen Tradition
angel Kyodo williams-175

Rev angel Kyodo williams is a teacher, author, activist, master trainer and leader. She is the author of Being Black: Zen and the Art of Living With Fearlessness and Grace. Williams is the Spiritual Director of the meditation-based newDharma Community and founder of the Center for Transformative Change in Berkeley, California[3] and is also credited with developing fearlessMeditation, fearlessYoga and Warrior Spirit Training. More at the Center for Transformative Change.

DaRa Williams – Insight Tradition

DaRa Williams is a trainer, meditation teacher and wellness coach. She has been a clinician and administrator in the field of Mental Health for over 25 years. DaRa currently maintains a private practice in Manhattan. She is a certified Complex Trauma Focusing Oriented Therapist and a practitioner of Natural Force Healing, a vibrational energetic healing system. DaRa has been a meditator for the past 20 years and is a practitioner of both Vipassana and Ascension meditation. She is a member of the Board of Directors for the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts, graduate of the Community Dharma Leaders Program, and in the current IMS/Spirit Rock Teacher Training program with Jack Kornfield.

Dharmachari Guhyapati – Triratna Buddhist Order
Guyapati

Guhyapati is the founder of the ecodharma centre in the Catalan Pyrenees, which combines a retreat and education centre with post-capitalist community living. Thirty years of Dharma practice and social activism, together with an astute sense of group dynamics, inform his facilitation of participatory and holistic learning. He was ordained in the Triratna Buddhist Order in 1994. In recent years he has given much of his time to the development of trainings focused on engaged Buddhism and sustainable activism. His love of the mountains finds expression in guiding wilderness immersion retreats and teaching radical ecology.

Tiokasin Ghosthorse – Cheyenne River Lakota Nation of South Dakota
Tiokasin Ghosthorse-175

Tiokasin Ghosthorse is from the Cheyenne River Lakota (Sioux) Nation of South Dakota and the bands of Itazipco/Mnicoujou and Oglala. He is the host of First Voices Indigenous Radio on WBAI NY – Pacifica Radio. Tiokasin has been described as “a spiritual agitator, natural rights organizer, Indigenous thinking process educator and a community activator.” One reviewer called him “a cultural resonator in the key of life.”

Dawn Haney – Insight Tradition
Dawn Haney

Dawn Haney brings passions for social justice, good non-profit management, and dharma to Buddhist Peace Fellowship as a Co-Director. For the past 10 years, she helps small organizations make a big impact through program development, popular education, and resource management. After years of reading Pema Chödrön and Thích Nhất Hạnh, Dawn settled into the Theravadan tradition on a meditation cushion at the Durango Dharma Center, desiring more resilience in her work to heal trauma and oppression. She has trained people about gender and racial justice since 2000, while earning her Master’s degree in Health Promotion from the University of Georgia.

Alex Swain – Triratna Buddhist Order
AlexSwain

Alex facilitates courses geared towards social and personal transformation at the eco-dharma centre, where she lives and works as Project Coordinator. Her history of political activism has involved her in direct action and affinity group work focused on climate justice, ant-capitalism, queer politics and gender identity. A strong focus on the somatic dimension (informed by her work as a dance artist and yoga teacher) underpins both her approach to the dharma and work to promote social change. Her Buddhist practice has been influenced by teachers of various traditions and she’s currently undertaking the ordination training of the Triratna Buddhist Order.