Hello, I’m Ari. I train and serve on staff at the Zen Peacemakers, working with Bernie Glassman to coordinate our online community, among other things. I’ll be one of your hosts for this blog, which will accompany our free online monthly newsletter on Western Socially Engaged Buddhism. The About page explains what this blog will be about.
Last January, Geoff Taylor (who took these pictures) and I accompanied Bernie to the Rowe Camp and Conference Center, where he led a weekend workshop. We thought it would be a good opportunity to answer questions for an interview that will appear in the German magazine Connection, in anticipation of Bernie’s June/13 appearance with musician Konstantin Wecker in Berlin. To get a taste of Konstantin’s work, check out Sage Nein!, which implores us to say no to fascism and xenophobia.
The interview questions were prepared by Christa Spannbauer, journalist and assistant to Roshi Willigis Jäger. We look forward to working with her to promote Socially Engaged Buddhism in Europe. Bernie’s answers were shaped by Christa’s insightful questions, the current projects of the Zen Peacemakers and the comments of workshop participants. Rowe director Rev. Douglas Wilson came out of sabbatical to join us and raised powerful questions about working towards systemic change. Zen teachers Mervyn and Cecilie Lander asked about developing Socially Engaged Buddhism in their zendo in Australia. After the conference, they visited us for a few days in Montague and later joined the Zen Peacemakers Sangha. It was a pleasure to record Bernie’s answers to Christa’s questions. Stay tuned to this blog for this previously unpublished interview and much more!