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Lions Roar : September 2016
What is your practice tradition? Soto Zen. Primary teachers? Tim McCarthy and Gudo Nishijima. Favorite meditation practice? Shikantaza—“just sitting.” It’s all I do. What is your current project? My new book, Don’t Be A Jerk, just came out. So I’m on the road talking about that. Every year I go to Europe for about two months to give talks and lead retreats. It keeps me out of trouble. Mostly. Recommended dharma books? Mine! Ha! Honestly, if I didn’t like my own writing I wouldn’t write. So I do rec- ommend them, even though that seems a bit self-serving. I also like Zen Mind Beginner’s Mind, anything by Dainin Katagiri, anything by Shohaku Okumura, and Dogen, though he is very hard to read. Your favorite virtue? In other people? Honesty, I suppose. That seems to take care of pretty much everything else. Your principal poison? Greed, hatred, and delusion. The yummiest poisons of all! Your idea of happiness? Years ago DEVO was asked that and one of them said, “A totally healthy and successful bowel movement.” I’ve always liked that answer. Not because it’s gross, but because it points out that normal things you do every day (hope- fully) are a real source of happiness that we often overlook. The natural talent you’d most like to have? I used to joke that I was a “man of useless talents.” I can do a lot of things naturally, just not very well. I’m an OK bass player, a decent guitarist, an OK cartoonist, an adequate writer. I feel like if I had any other “natural talents,” I’d just squander those too. What’s for dinner? I’m a vegetarian but a bad cook. Luckily I live right down the street from LA’s best Indian veggie restaurant, Samosa House. Guilty pleasure? I refuse to answer that question on the grounds that it may tend to incriminate me. UPCOMING RETREATS www.ibme.info • 978.254 .7082 NEW YEAR’S RETREATS for TEENS MASSACHUSETTS Dec 28, 2016 — Jan 1, 2017 VIRGINIA Dec 28, 2016 — Jan 1, 2017 BIG SUR RETREAT for ADULTS April15—22,2 April 15 — 22, 2017 • Three 5-day retreats • Online study • Small group meetings • Personal mentoring • Structured daily meditation • Practicum In-depth training for professionals teaching mindfulness in high school, college, or other youth settings. Participants will learn mindfulness practices developed specifically for adolescents, and the skills to be effective mindful mentors. JUNE 2017 — JUNE 2018 a YEAR-LONG IMMERSION & CERTIFICATION in TEACHING MINDFULNESS to ADOLESCENTS MINDFULNESS TEACHER TRAINING LION’S ROAR | SEPTEMBER 2016 39