Tuesday, May 27, 7:00 PM
The Destructive Effects of Modern Technology
On the Environment and Society
As Seen by Thomas Merton
#1 / MP3 / 10 mb / 47 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 64 kb / Click Here
Father Ezekiel Lotz OSB
Mount Angel Abbey, Saint Benedict, Oregon
Wednesday, May 28, 8:30-11:15 AM
The world in which we live
What Is Science Telling Us Today
#2 / Part 1 / MP3 / 12 mb / 53 min / Click Here
#2 / Part 2 / MP3 / 18 mb / 1 hr 19 min / Click Here
*Dr. Stephanie Kaza's - "Power Point Presentation in PDF" / 6.1 mb / Click Here
Dr. Stephanie Kaza
University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont
Wednesday, May 28, 2:30-5:15 PM
Buddhist and Christian understandings
of the world and our place in it: religious vision and ethical
choices Interrelatedness, Interdependence, Dependent Origination
#3 / MP3 / 5 mb / 23 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 24 kb / Click Here
Arrow River Hermitage, Thunder Bay, Ontario
The World as Created, Fallen, and Redeemed
#4 / MP3 / 8 mb / 35 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 35 kb / Click Here
Father James Wiseman OSB
Saint Anselm’s Abbey, Washington DC
Thursday, May 29, 8:30-11:15 AM
How monastic rules speak of the world and our life in it:
Bringing new awareness to ancient yet living documents. The Patimokkha/Pratimoksha
(Theravada) and The Ten Major and Forty-eight Subsidiary Bodhisattva Precepts
From the “Net of Brahma” Sutra (Mahayana)
#5 / MP3 / 10 mb / 45 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 56 kb / Click Here
Rev. Heng Sure
Berkeley Buddhist Monastery, Berkeley, California
The Rule of Benedict
# 6 / MP3 / 5 mb / 22 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 19 kb / Click Here
Sister Judith Sutera OSB
Mount Saint Scholastica Monastery, Atchison, Kansas
Thursday, May 29, 2:30-5:15 PM
Monasticism vis-à-vis the consumer society:
The Monastic Instinct to Revere, to Conserve,
To Be Content with Little, and to Share
#7 / MP3 / 9 mb / 41 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 29 kb / Click Here
Rev. Eko Little
Shasta Abbey, Mount Shasta, California
Simplicity of Life
# 8 / MP3 / 8 mb / 37 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 29 kb / Click Here
Father Charles Cummings, OCSO
Holy Trinity Monastery, Huntsville, Utah
Friday, May 30, 8:30-11:15 AM
Bad Practices Hidden or Justified by Ideology
#9 / MP3 / 11 mb / 50 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 57 kb / Click Here
Ayya Tathaaloka Bhikkhuni
Dhammadharini Vihara, Freemont, California
Bad Practices Hidden or Justified by Ideology
#10 / MP3 / 6 mb / 25 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 19 kb / Click Here
Father Hugh Feiss OSB
Monastery of the Ascension, Jerome, Idaho
The environmental practices of American monastic
communities... Good Practices, Ancient and Emerging
#11 / MP3 / 10 mb / 44 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 19 kb / Click Here
Ven. Thubten Semkye
Sravasti Abbey, Newport, Washington
The environmental practices of American monastic
communities... Good Practices, Ancient and Emerging
#12 / MP3 / 6 mb / 26 min / Click Here
Conference Paper in PDF / 23 kb / Click Here
Sister Renée Branigan OSB
Sacred Heart Monastery, Richardton, North Dakota
Friday, May 30, 2:30-5:15 PM
Monasticism for the good of the earth
Buddhists and Catholics speaking with one voice
Preparation of a written statement of understanding and commitment
Conference Statement in PDF / 53 kb / Click Here
Saturday, May 31
Closing Ceremony and Monastic Statement
Gethsemani 3 - Participants
Sister Joan Therese Anderson OSB / Catholic
Lives at her community’s monastery in Tucson, Arizona. She has been involved in East/West dialogue for twenty years. She attended the first Gethsemani Encounter as an observer and was moved by the attentiveness, gentleness and respect with which all beliefs were received.
Dr. Bettina Bäumer / Catholic
Has a PhD in Philosophy, an Honorary Doctorate in Theology, and is a Professor of Religious Studies. She has been living and working in Varanasi, India, since 1967, and has been teaching in the Universities of Banaras, Vienna, Berne and Salzburg. Her special fields of research and publication are Sanskrit, Indian philosophy and spirituality, Indian temple art, and interreligious dialogue. She was a disciple of Swami Abhishiktananda (Henri Le Saux OSB) and was President of the Abhishiktananda Society (Delhi) for nineteen years. She has published a number of books on Indian spirituality and art. For the last twenty-two years she has been deeply involved in the spiritual tradition of Kashmir Shaivism and has translated some of its basic texts from Sanskrit. She has also been guiding meditation retreats on these spiritualities for the last sixteen years. Participating in Gethsemani III in the company of such a wonderful group of spiritual people from the two religions is a great honor and joy. For me it is a pilgrimage to Thomas Merton and a way of establishing direct contact with the members of MID, who invited me to be an advisor to their board. The theme of ecology is very dear to my heart and belongs to what Raimon Panikkar calls the cosmotheandric understanding of Reality. Unless the leaders of the religions can give an example of a spirituality that respects and loves the Earth and Nature, we cannot expect politicians to solve the problem. And it is in this area where a dialogue between religions is both possible and necessary.
Father David Bock OCSO / Catholic
Entered monastic life in 1962 at the Abbey of New Melleray in Peosta, Iowa. He has been a board member of MID for the past six years. He is currently engaged as cook, librarian, and teacher of monks in monastic formation and training.
Sister Renée Branigan OSB / Catholic
Has been a member of Sacred Heart Monastery in Richardton, North Dakota, since 1964. Her degrees in communication and spirituality prepared her for ministries of teaching in high school, the university, and monastic formation, as well as for editing publications for her community, participating in the American Benedictine Academy, and being editorial assistant for The American Benedictine Review. As a child of a military family (Air Force), she came to the monastery knowing there was a vast, wonderful world out there. She recounts that at the age of ten or eleven, her father asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up. She told him she wanted most to study how people of different faiths came to know God. That fascination has never waned. She came to the monastery to seek God, and her life as a monastic has whetted her appetite to find God in more vast and varied venues.
Brother Dominic Cason OSB / Catholic
Grew up in thirteen foster homes until he dropped out of high school and entered the service, doing three tours in Vietnam. On returning he worked for many years as a field tester for outdoor equipment. When he could do this no longer because of knee problems he went into retail management before entering monastic life at Saint Benedict’s Abbey in Atchison, Kansas. There he started the college’s ceramics program and now directs the Abbey Art Gallery. His long involvement in environmental issues once got him into legal trouble. He took part in hanging a banner—written in Japanese and Russian—on the Sears Tower in Chicago calling for an end to the killing of whales.
Sister Catherine Cleary OSB / Catholic
Is a member of Saint Mary Monastery, Rock Island, Illinois, where she is on the retreat house staff serving as a spiritual director and retreat presenter. She initiated a Women’s Muslim/Christian Dialogue that has led to interest and friendship among Muslim and Christian women in the area. In May her monastery will host a Cambodian Buddhist monk who will teach posture and breathing techniques and meditation to the monastic community. He will also speak about his monastery’s school for orphaned children and its housing and rehabilitation of women victimized by trafficking. Her community will host the 2008 Buddhist/Benedictine Sisters dialogue.
Father James Conner OCSO / Catholic
Is a monk at Gethsemani Abbey and was for many years the editor of the Monastic Interreligious Dialogue Bulletin. He has spoken and written widely on Merton, with whom he worked as Assistant Novice Master in the 1960s.
Father Charles Cummings, OCSO / Catholic
Has been a monk of Holy Trinity Abbey in Utah since 1960. He currently serves as vocation director and novice director and helps make flavored creamed honey. He is the author of "Eco-Spirituality: Toward a Reverent Life" (Mahwah, NJ: Paulist, 1991, ISBN 0-8091-3251-6, out of print).
Rev. Thich Hang Dat / Buddhist
Came to the United States as a teenager in the 1980s. In 1990 he graduated from Penn State University with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. After that he moved to Ukiah, California, where he earned a master’s degree in Buddhist studies from Dharma Realm Buddhist University and became a monk. He established the Ten Thousand Buddhas Summit Monastery (TTBSM) near Corydon, Indiana, on October, 2001. The monastery is an organization of Buddhist monks, nuns, and laity who place emphasis on practicing Buddhist Mindfulness, Loving-Kindness, Broadmindedness, and Skillfulness, which are beneficial to family, community, and society. He has taught Buddhism classes at four schools: the University of Southern Indiana in Evansville, Indiana University-Southeast in New Albany, and Bellarmine University and the University of Louisville’s Shelby Campus, both in Louisville, Kentucky.
Dr. Ron Epstein / Buddhist
Is a scholar-practitioner affiliated with Dharma Realm Buddhist University, Ukiah, California. He previously taught Buddhism and comparative religion at the University of California at Davis and at San Francisco State University, where he also developed classes in environmental ethics. As a founding member of the Buddhist Text Translation Society, he has translated both Buddhist sutras and exegetical works. He has written on a wide range of Buddhist topics. Among his publications on environmental topics are “Environmental Issues: A Buddhist Perspective,” “Genetic Engineering: A Buddhist Assessment,” and “Redesigning the World: Ethical Questions about Genetic Engineering.” He was also co-sponsor of the first county-wide legislation in the United States that bans the growing and raising of genetically engineered plants and animals. For the past six years he has been a participant in the annual Northern California Chan, Zen, Catholic Dialogue Group retreats, which are co-sponsored by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Father Hugh Bernard Feiss OSB / Catholic
Is a monk at the Monastery of the Ascension in Jerome, Idaho. Having earned licentiates in theology and philosophy at The Catholic University of America and a doctorate in theology from the Anselmianum in Rome, he taught theology at Mount Angel Seminary in Oregon for thirty years, including a course on “Theology and Ecology.” He contributed to the Bishops’ Pastoral on the Columbia River.
Bhikshuni Heng Jen / Buddhist
Is a disciple of Master Hsuan Hua, has been a fully-ordained nun in the Mahayana Buddhist tradition for eighteen years. While residing at the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas in Northern California, she served as an instructor for Developing Virtue Girls and Boys high school and as a member of the Sangha faculty of Dharma Realm Buddhist University. Currently resident at Gold Buddha Monastery in Vancouver, Canada, she continues her decades of active participation in the Buddhist Text Translation Society, serving as a reviewer of Chinese transcripts, a translator from Chinese to English, and a certifier of English translations. Heng Jen Shi is a proficient Cantor of classical Buddhist rituals and a lively speaker of Dharma.
Jason Kaas / Catholic
Graduated this year from Saint John's University in Collegeville, Minnesota, with a major in Peace Studies and minors in environmental studies and philosophy. His major areas of research have included Native American spirituality and the Jain tradition.
Rev. Chandana Karuna / Buddhist
Is a Dharma teacher at the International Buddhist Meditation Center and a member of its residential program for monastics, clerics and laypeople in Los Angeles. She is committed to interfaith/intra-Buddhist dialogue, with a special interest in peacemaking/peacekeeping.
Dr. Stephanie Kaza / Buddhist
Is Professor of Environmental Studies at the University of Vermont, serving the Environmental Program with an appointment through the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources. She teaches and advises undergraduate and graduate students with a concentration in the environmental humanities. Her courses include: Religion and Ecology, Ecofeminism, Unlearning Consumerism, and Introduction to Environmental Studies. Dr. Kaza’s interdisciplinary approach is reflected in her academic training: Ph.D. in Biology, University of California, Santa Cruz; M.A. in Education, Stanford University; M.Div., Starr King School for the Ministry; and B.A. in Biology, Oberlin College. As co-chair of the UMV Environmental Council, Professor Kaza has been actively engaged in campus sustainability initiatives to reduce waste, conserve energy, and promote environmental values. Dr. Kaza is currently President of the Society for Buddhist-Christian Studies and is an active member of the Religion and Ecology group of the American Academy of Religion. She is the author of numerous articles on Buddhist environmental thought as well as The Attentive Heart: Conversations with Trees, meditative essays on deep ecological relations with trees, and co-editor (with Kenneth Kraft) of, "Dharma Rain: Sources of Buddhist Environmentalism." Her latest book is an edited collection on Buddhism and consumerism entitled, "Hooked! Buddhist Writings on Greed, Desire, and the Urge to Consume." She writes a regular ecology column for Turning Wheel, journal of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship.
Rev. Kusala Bhikshu / Buddhist
Lives and works at the International Buddhist Meditation Center in the Korea town section of Los Angeles. He cares for the Center’s animals leads a weekly discussion group and a twice weekly meditation group. He continues to give presentations at local high schools, colleges, and churches on basic Buddhism and social action. Kusala is the web-master for International Buddhist Meditation Center and his own sites: Kusala.info, UrbanDharma.org, DharmaTalks.info, BuddhaBooks.info. He is Buddhist Chaplain for the University Religious Conference at UCLA and director of the University Buddhist Association at UCLA with an on-campus Buddhist Club that meets weekly at the UCLA Catholic Center.
Rev. Eko Little / Buddhist
Is the abbot of Shasta Abbey, a monastery of the Order of Buddhist Contemplatives, home to approximately twenty-eight male and female monastics. The monastery is located in the Siskiyou National Forest, a beautiful place if there ever was one.
Father Ezekiel Lotz OSB / Catholic
Is a member of Mount Angel Abbey, Saint Benedict, Oregon. He earned a D.Phil. degree from the Faculty of Theology at Oxford University in 2005 and teaches at Mount Angel Seminary.
Sister Anne McCarthy OSB / Catholic
Is a member of Mount Saint Benedict Monastery in Erie, Pennsylvania, and is on staff at Benetvision: resources for contemporary spirituality. She lives at Mary the Apostle, a new Catholic Worker house in inner-city Erie, chairs the local peace coalition, and gives retreats on nonviolence and monasticism. She has served in national leadership with Pax Christi USA and the Fellowship of Reconciliation.
Sister Hélène Mercier OSB / Catholic
Is a member of Saint Benedict’s Monastery, Saint Joseph, Minnesota, where she is Director of Oblates. Sister Hélène began her monastic life at the Benedictine Priory of Montreal, founded by Dom John Main.
Father Markus Muff OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of Engelberg, a Benedictine monastery in Switzerland. His university studies at the Hochschule Sankt Gallen, Switzerland, were in economics and business administration. In preparation for ordination to the priesthood he studied philosophy and theology at Einsiedeln, another Benedictine monastery in Switzerland, at the international Benedictine House of Studies (Sant’Anselmo) in Rome, and at the University of Lucerne. He taught English in the high school at Engelberg and was Business Manager of the monastery for sixteen years. He served as spiritual director for Catholic seminary students in Lucerne for three years and now is in Rome as Director of Development for Europe at Sant’Anselmo. He is a member of about ten different international foundations—including the Rotary Club Roma Appia Antica—that support culture, education, monasteries, interreligious dialogue, and social welfare.
Jerome Naduvathanyil OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of the monastery of Asirvanam in Bangalore and served as secretary to Benedictine Interreligious Dialogue (BID) in India. He is beginning a three-year appointment to serve as a parish priest in the Diocese of La Crosse, Wisconsin.
Lama Norbu / Buddhist
Began his study of the Dharma in the Gelugpa lineage of Tibetan Buddhism and was ordained in Sera Mey Monastery in 1987. During his fourteen years of monastic studies, he was blessed to study with teachers such as His Holiness the Dalai Lama, His Holiness Sakya Trizin, Ven. Khen Sur Rinpoche Ngawang Teecho, Ven. Dhakpa Tulku Rinpoche, and Ven. Geshe Danche Zunpo. After he passed his Geshe Degree in 1997, he traveled to Singapore and Taiwan. In 1998, he accompanied the abbot of Sera Mey University, Ven. Khen Sur Rinpoche Ngawang Teecho, and became his Tibetan-Chinese Dharma translator in Taiwan. Soon he was invited by the Chinese Buddhist Association to be the resident teacher in Taiwan, where he stayed for three years. Ven. Norbu Lama then came to the United States to explore the world, meet people from diverse backgrounds, and teach the essence of Buddha Dharma, which transcends culture and ideology. He is currently teaching Buddhism and living in Phoenix Arizona as the spiritual director of Bodhiheart.
Father Michael Peterson OSB / Catholic
Has been a member of Blue Cloud Abbey in rural South Dakota for twelve years. He is the director of the Retreat Program and also the abbey’s choir director and organist. He is deeply rooted in the land through his vow of stability.
Brother Daniel Pont OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of the Abbaye d’En Calcat in south of France and serves as European Coordinator for Dialogue Monastique Interreligieux/Monastic Interreligious Dialogue. He attended a Kumbha Mela in India when he was eighteen and spent seven years in Jerusalem in a Byzantine rite monastery. Several trips in Asia across Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim countries rooted him in the need for interreligious dialogue. He is the director of the ecological commission in his monastery. In partnership with WWF (World Wildlife Fund), he compared the ecological print of his monastery with that of a French Buddhist monastery. The forest of his monastery has been devastated by the mountain pine-beetle infestation, a result of the 2003 drought. All the monks less then sixty years old are working once a month to replant a new forest. A new wood power boiler is about to be built. He is the monastery’s bee keeper and works in its zither workshop.
Ajahn Punnadhammo / Buddhist
Is a Theravada monk ordained in Thailand in 1992. He is currently the abbot of the Arrow River Forest Hermitage near Thunder Bay, Ontario.
Brother Aaron Raverty OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of Saint John’s Abbey, project editor at Liturgical Press, Collegeville, Minnesota, and a cultural anthropologist. He is serving his second term on the MID Board of Directors, and also serves as the book review editor for the MID Bulletin.
Thubten Semkye / Buddhist
Has been practicing Buddhism since 1997. She met her teacher Bhikshuni Thubten Chodron at Dharma Friendship Foundation in Seattle, Washington where Venerable Chodron was spiritual director. While a member of Dharma Friendship Foundation she organized teacher’s visits and lead meditation classes as well as attended retreats lead by her teacher. A lay practitioner at the time, Venerable Semkye studied horticulture and was a master gardener for the Seattle area. In 2004 she relocated to Newport, Washington shortly after Venerable Chodron founded Sravasti Abbey. Ordained in 2007, Semkye facilitates volunteer activities at the Abbey and is responsible for the perennial gardens and grounds. She also heads the implementation of the Forest Stewardship plan for the Abbey’s 240 acres of forest and meadows.
Abbot Mark Serna OSB / Catholic
Is a priest and monk from Portsmouth Abbey, Rhode Island. He entered the monastery in 1979 and served as the monastery’s Abbot from 1991 to 2005 and Headmaster of the Portsmouth Abbey School from 1995 to 2000. Over the years he has led many retreats and has had experience as a Spiritual Director. He is actively engaged in interreligious dialogue and is the President/Chairman of Monastic Interreligious Dialogue.
Father William Skudlarek OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of Saint John’s Abbey, Collegeville, Minnesota, where his most recent work was as Administrative Assistant to the Abbot. In addition to having taught theology and homiletics at Saint John’s University, he served as a Maryknoll Associate in Brazil, where he lived with a small lay monastic community and assisted the pastor of a rural parish for five years. He was also a member of Saint John’s Abbey’s priory in Japan for seven years. During his time in Japan he began to practice zazen with the Sanbyō Kyōdan. After serving for five years as President and then Executive Director of the North American branch of Monastic Interreligious Dialogue, he was appointed General Secretary of Dialogue Interreligieux Monastique/Monastic Interreligious Dialogue in November 2007 and will move to Rome in August 2008 to promote and coordinate monastic interreligious dialogue worldwide.
Sister Sarah Smedman OSB / Catholic
Of Saint Scholastica Monastery, Duluth, Minnesota, is a retired professor of English. Currently she is Director of Continuing Education and Life Development and is a member of the Administrative Staff at the Monastery. She serves on the Monastery Council and on the Boards of Trustees of Saint Mary’s Medical Center/Saint Mary’s Hospital Superior, Wisconsin, of Saint Mary’s—Duluth Clinic, and of the College of Saint Scholastica, where she is also a member of the Advisory Boards of the Interreligious Forum and of the Braegelman Catholic Studies Program.
Sister Katherine Ann Smolik OSB / Catholic
Has been a member of the Sisters of Perpetual Adoration of Clyde, Missouri, since 1994. She lived at their Osage Monastery, a Catholic ashram in Oklahoma, for two years and attended Nuns in the West II, held at the Hsi Lai Temple in Hacienda Heights, California. She has been a member of the Monastic Interreligious Dialogue Board for three years and is currently coordinating Nuns in the West III to be held this year at Saint Mary Monastery in Rock Island, Illinois, on Labor Day weekend.
Ajahn Sona / Buddhist
Is a fully ordained Theravada monk of nineteen years seniority. He is the abbot of Birken Forest Monastery in British Columbia, Canada. He has trained in the Thai forest tradition in Thailand and also with Ven. Gunaratana in the Sri Lankan forest tradition. Ven. Sona’s lay background has been deeply involved in Western cultural studies of classical music and Western philosophy.
Ajahn Sudanto / Buddhist
Became interested in Buddhism and Indian spiritual traditions while completing a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Oregon. After graduation he set off for an open-ended period of travel and spiritual seeking in India and Southeast Asia. After a year of traveling, he proceeded to Thailand to begin a period of intensive study and meditation, which drew him to Wat Pah Nanachat in the Northeast of Thailand. There he met Ajahn Pasanno (then the abbot) and requested to ordain and train with the resident community, taking full ordination as a bhikkhu in 1994. After training for five years at Wat Pah Nanachat and various branch monasteries in the Ajahn Chah tradition, he came to Abhayagiri Buddhist Monastery in Redwood Valley, California, to live and train with the emerging sangha in America.
Rev. Heng Sure / Buddhist
Has been ordained for thirty-two years in the Chinese Mahayana Tradition and is Abbot of the Berkeley Buddhist Monastery. He has been a "pilgrim," a translator, a lecturer on sutras, a musician, and an interpreter of the Buddha’s Dharma for Westerners and more often these days, for Asians raised either in the West, who meet Buddhism in the United States, or for Chinese raised in a secular state without access to religion or spirituality in any form.
As a practitioner and scholar he is deeply interested in Interfaith and Intrafaith Dialogue; what we do in these first years of the Dharma’s advent in the West, in particular what we can learn from our Interfaith neighbors will determine how the Buddha’s teaching will take root, adapt and grow in the West.
Sister Judith Sutera OSB / Catholic
Is a member of the monastery of Mount Saint Scholastica in Atchison, Kansas. She is editor of Magistra, a biannual journal that features translations of sources and original research in the history of women's spirituality from all religious traditions, and editor in chief of, The American Monastic Newsletter a national news channel for American Benedictines and Cistercians sponsored by the American Benedictine Academy. She is also a charter member of the steering committee of the Conference on the History of Women Religious.
Bhikshuni Heng Syun / Buddhist
Entered the Sangha in 1990 in Taiwan and received full ordination thirteen years ago.. She has served as a monastic administrator and manager of Gold Mountain Monastery in San Francisco, Gold Wheel Monastery in Los Angeles, Long Beach Monastery in Long Beach, Gold Summit Monastery in Seattle, and is currently manager of Avatamsaka Monastery in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. She has lectured on precepts to novice nuns during several of the intensive 108-day training periods leading to full ordination. She is an experienced speaker of Dharma and is qualified to lecture on Mahayana Sutras, following the oral traditions of the late Venerable Master Hsuan Hua. She enjoys sharing thoughts and talks with members of her Wednesday night meditation group.
Bhikkhuni Tathaaloka / Buddhist
Is the founding Abbess of Dhammadharini Vihara, a women’s monastic retreat residence in Fremont, California. She is an American-born member of the Buddhist Women’s Monastic Sangha with a background in Zen and Theravadan Buddhism. She began monastic life in 1990 and was granted Higher Ordination by an ecumenical gathering of the Bhikkhu & Bhikkhuni Sanghas under the late Bhante Ratanansara in Los Angeles in early 1997.
Dr. Victoria Urubshurow / Buddhist
Has been a practicing Buddhist since 1975. She was a student of the late Geshe Wangyal at the Tibetan Buddhist Learning Center in Washington, New Jersey, where she lived for extended periods of time. She earned a doctorate degree from the Committee on the History of Culture at the University of Chicago (1984), and has taught college courses on Buddhism, Asian Religions, World Religions, World Mythology, and Comparative Spirituality for two decades. Presently she is a Collegiate Associate Professor of Humanities at the University of Maryland University College. Her recent publications include, "The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Life of Buddha" (Penguin Group 2007), and "Introducing World Religions" (Routledge and JBE Online Books 2008).
Sister Mary David Walgenbach OSB / Catholic
Is prioress of Benedictine Women of Madison, a newly established ecumenical community at Holy Wisdom Monastery, Madison, Wisconsin. Along with the community’s ecumenical work, an environmental initiative begun in 1995 has resulted in restoring farm land to natural prairie, participating in the Mendota Watershed Project, and restoring an oaks savanna. We collaborate with many environmental and ecumenical groups to further our mission. The community is in the process of building a LEED platinum monastery which will be completed in June 2009.
Father James Wiseman OSB / Catholic
Is a monk of Saint Anselm’s Abbey in Washington DC and a professor of theology at The Catholic University of America. He is a former chair of MID and has been editing its online Bulletin since 1998. His most recent book is, "Spirituality and Mysticism: A Global View" (Maryknoll, NY: Orbis, 2006), and his article on Thomas Merton and Theravada Buddhism appeared in Merton and Buddhism, edited by Bonnie Thurston (Louisville: Fons Vitae, 2007).
Gethsemani I || Gethsemani 2 || Abbey of Gethsemani || Photos 1 || Photos 2 || Photos 3 || Video
Gethsemani 3 Group Photos - Large Size - Photo 1 | Photo 2
Gethsemani 3 was organized and funded by the MID. The Monastic Interreligious Dialogue
(MID) is an organization of Benedictine and Trappist monks and nuns committed to fostering interreligious and intermonastic dialogue at the level of spiritual practice and experience between North American Catholic monastic women and men and contemplative practitioners of diverse religious traditions.
The Abbey of Gethsemani - Trappist, Kentucky USA
Green Monasticism / A Buddhist-Catholic Response to an Environmental Calamity
Edited by Donald Mitchell, and William Skudlarek, O.S.B.
"Now in Kindle eBook" / $8.99 - Click Here
Lantern Books / Green Monasticism
List Price: $22.00
6 x 9 inches
Available for Purchase / March 2010
For more than forty years—inspired by the pioneering dialogues of the Trappist monk Thomas Merton, with His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and the Zen master Daisetz T. Suzuki—Buddhist and Christian monastics have been engaged in interfaith colloquies about the similarities and differences between these two great spiritual traditions. In 1996 and 2002, practitioners from Catholicism and various Buddhist traditions met at Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky, the home of Thomas Merton, to discuss spiritual practice and the nature of suffering, respectively.
Green Monasticism is a collection of articles and talks from the third Gethesemani Encounter, which took place in 2008. The theme was the Buddhist and Catholic response to the environmental crisis. In addition to covering a wide range of Catholic thought, the essays come from both the Theravadan and Mahayana traditions and cover both North American and international monastic orders.
William Skudlarek - is a monk of Saint John's Abbey, Collegeville, Minnesota. He now lives and works in Rome as Secretary General of Monastic Interreligious Dialogue. In addition to having taught homiletics and liturgy at the School of Theology/Seminary of Saint John’s University, he served as an associate of the Maryknoll Mission Society in Brazil for five years and was a member of Saint John’s Abbey’s priory in Japan for seven.
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