Joan Sutherland

In the Harada-Yasutani koan curriculum as passed down through Robert Aitken and his heirs, when one resolves a particular koan, one may be given examples of responses given by one’s ancestors in the lineage. One of my ancestors – although she is actually younger than I – is Joan Sutherland. Joan is Dharma teacher, butContinue reading “Joan Sutherland”

Seiho Morris

Seiho Morris is an ordained Rinzai priest who was working in an addiction treatment center when I interviewed him in 2018. At the time, he was preparing to lead a retreat in Cincinnati for people engaged in 12 Step programs. I assume the retreat was related to his work at the treatment center, but heContinue reading “Seiho Morris”

James Ford

James Ford founded the Boundless Way Zen centers in New England and later established the Blue Cliff Zen Sangha in California. He was also, until his retirement shortly after I met him, a Unitarian minister. We first met in his office at the First Unitarian Church of Providence, Rhode Island – located on the cornerContinue reading “James Ford”

Tenku Ruff

Tenku Ruff is concerned that Zen in the west is too often presented from the perspective of white boomer males. Currently she is board president of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association – the youngest person to ever hold that office – and is engaged, she tells me, in leading the association through “a generational shift.”Continue reading “Tenku Ruff”

Seiso Paul Cooper

Seiso Paul Cooper took jukai – the ceremony in which one formally accepts the precepts and declares oneself a Buddhist – for the first time with Eido Shimano in the Rinzai tradition in the 1980s. He was unable, however, to form a personal relationship with Shimano as a teacher. “I’d just see him on retreatsContinue reading “Seiso Paul Cooper”