Members Bios - please contribute yours

Introduce yourself to others at Dhamma Wheel.
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Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Dan74 » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:21 pm

A member just started a thread asking about some other members credentials, etc.

I think it can be healthy to have a little thread where people can contribute a few lines about themselves. Some of us did that in the Intro already but others may feel like doing more after having gotten involved in the forum and gotten to know the folk here a bit better.

Anyhow here goes one of me and I hope some others will follow!

Unlike my more sensible Buddhist friends, I got involved in Buddhist fora probably 5 or so years ago back at the old E-Sangha. "Dan" was from a fond memory of my University days when my Honour thesis supervisor Mike Shapiro would yell out "Come in, Dan!" in his Brooklyn twang every time I stood outside his office door waiting for our appointment. Seeing that most members were North American, "Dan" it was. 74 is the year I was born. In real world people call me "Daniel".

My day job is teaching maths and stats and doing research in the same at a local University. I also have 3 cheeky little kids and a partner who is supportive of my practice. Apart from Dharma practice, I spend a lot of time taking pictures of sunsets, flowers, raindrops, critters great and small, people and places.

I first came across Buddhism roughly 18 years ago in a second-hand book shop, where I picked up Alan Watts' The Way of Zen and Blofeld's The Zen Teachings of Huang Po. Took me nearly 10 more years until I met my teacher and went for a retreat (after Watts I thought I had it all figured out but Haung Po kept nagging on me), the first one of probably a dozen or more that I sat with her. I am very grateful for all I have received in the way of the Dharma - it has transformed my life. The tradition I most closely identify with is Korean Zen but I find the Pali Suttas very relevant to my practice and teachers from all denominations can provide inspiration and insight.

I teach Buddhist Religious Education as a volunteer at a local school and also visit prisons as a chaplain. Though I don't feel ready at all to teach the Dharma, there is a dire shortage here and hopefully I do better than nothing at all.

I like this forum because there is a critical mass of experience, knowledge and sincerity here and I continue to learn a lot here. So I mostly lurk. Thank you everyone for contributing!

:bow: :bow: :bow:

PS Here's a pic of me taken by a friend at the Escher Museum in the Hague a few months ago:


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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Nov 29, 2011 10:54 pm


(Updated 2nd May 2017)

My name is Paul and I’ve been Buddhist since 2005.

My interest is in understanding what the Buddha taught and putting that into practice. To that end, I’m nominally Theravadin, since Theravada is the only extant school to place primary emphasis on the suttas most reasonably attributable to the historical Buddha. Modern bhikkhus/teachers of most interest in terms of shining a spotlight on what the Buddha taught, for me, include Bhikkhu Nanananda, Nanavira Thera, Ajahn Chah and venerable Henepola Gunaratana.

I have a son named Bennett from a previous relationship, a wife named Tamika, and a young son named Owen. For work, I’m in the “project assurance” realm, which relates to project oversight, risk and issue identification/resolution, lessons learned reviews, and ensuring appropriate processes are developed and pursued. Outside of work, family and Dhamma, my other interests include music, DJing, cricket, democracy & political freedoms, games of intelligence and strategy (e.g. chess), social sciences, space exploration and a long Australian Summer.

I like Buddhist forums because they provide an opportunity to discuss deep matters associated with the Dhamma, road-test alternative interpretations, and cultivate spiritual friendship amongst others across the world who are interested in pursuing the Noble Eightfold Path.

Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

“Truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it.” (Flannery O'Connor)

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by DNS » Wed Nov 30, 2011 3:14 am

Nice pic Dan! Another 'Tiger' here.

Retro and I have a lot in common: Suttanta, interest in chess, and admins / co-founders of Dhamma Wheel.

my bio at Dhamma Wiki: David N. Snyder

Here is some other info not there:

Practicing Buddhism since 1984, started with Theravada and Zen centers, dabbled with Vajrayana centers and their practice for a few years and then back to Theravada ever since about 1990.

Married to a woman from Ethiopia and we have two children. She was a U.S. citizen and a successful business person before we met.

Have lived in Germany, the U.S., and Israel. Have been to India one time in year 2006. Have visited areas in North America, South Africa, Ethiopia, Kenya, Middle East, India, Nepal, and most of Western Europe.

For those that don't want to list too much detail about your bio, how about 6 words to describe yourself or your life? It could be personality traits, accomplishments, interests, or something else.

If I had to choose 6 words it would be: chess, family, ph.d., business, kalyana-mittas, Dhamma

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by befriend » Wed Nov 30, 2011 4:36 pm

i am 26 male. ive been meditating for 5 and half years starting with 2 years of shikantaza, and then 3 years of vipassana and metta.
frequently in the last 2 years i show people with mental illnesses how to practice metta, and now im including how to do daily chores with an altruistic mind, in order to increase there quality of life.
Take care of mindfulness and mindfulness will take care of you.

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Richard » Wed Nov 30, 2011 5:27 pm

Hello everyone,

I first became interested in Buddhism in the 1990's, and made my first contacts at a local Zen center. It took me about 10 years to explore and sort out all the different schools of Buddhism before finally settling on Theravada as the tradition I want to pursue. Now that I have learned some Pali, I enjoy reading sutta texts in the original. I have also enjoyed visiting some Theravada centers, but in my current location I have only a small insight meditation group. Some years ago, while living in Denver, I actually attended a Vipassana group run by David Snyder. I am now 65 and have recently relocated to the American Midwest in order to be near family, which includes a daughter and granddaughter. It's good to be near a large university library, where I can continue to read Buddh8ist scholarship.

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by MoesTavern » Wed Dec 07, 2011 7:52 pm


I have absolutely no credentials when it comes to buddhism, aside from home studies and living a life that knows dukkha in its many aspects :-) Most of my inspiration comes from Ajahn Sumedho and Ajahn Sucitto, whose online dhamma talks form an important part of my life. I live in far north Scandinavia in a caravan, built for cold winters. I take dogs for walks as a living and I also play chess, although it was a while since... I'm a male and 38 years of age. One of my favourite quotes comes from Groucho Marx: :quote: And these are my opinions, and if you don't like them I have others :quote:

Metta to you all!


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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Jason » Sat Dec 10, 2011 4:30 pm

I'm just some bloke who fancies himself a 'Buddhist.' :)
"Sabbe dhamma nalam abhinivesaya" (AN 7.58).

leaves in the hand (Buddhist-related blog)
leaves in the forest (non-Buddhist related blog)

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Kim OHara
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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Kim OHara » Sat Dec 10, 2011 11:37 pm

Kim O'Hara was born in northern India, son of an Irish soldier in the British army, in about 1880. Orphaned young, he grew up as a street kid amongst Indian people, accepting them and accepted by them, and as a teenager he met a Tibetan lama and became his disciple. In the next few years he negotiated a tricky path back to the white world without losing touch with his local roots.
He was, of course, fictional - the hero of a book by Rudyard Kipling. Kipling is quite unfashionable these days except for his kids books but the accuracy and sympathy of his depiction of colonial India has been praised by people much more knowledgeable than me - Salman Rushdie, for one.

As a child of English emigrants in Australia in the 1950s I grew up with Kipling's Just So stories and Jungle Book, and Kim's lama was my first contact with Buddhism. When I was choosing a screen name, Kim felt like a good one: that first connection to Buddhism, the British colonial parallels, my sense of not quite belonging to Australia but certainly not belonging to England, etc.

In real life I got deeply into the counterculture of the late 60s and early 70s in Melbourne, which meant Transcendental Meditation, Ram Dass, Allan Watts, yoga, and so on. I drifted away from that as I became a music teacher, got married, raised a family and moved to the tropics, but came back to it a few years ago.

Last edited by Kim OHara on Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:38 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Khalil Bodhi
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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Khalil Bodhi » Sun Dec 11, 2011 1:51 am

I have had an interest in Buddhism since my freshman year of college (I even went so far to as take the refuges long before I had any idea what Buddhadhamma really was) and considered myself more or less an armchair Buddhist despite heavily carousing and otherwise making a mess of my life. It’s funny to think of it now but I truly believed my actions would lead me straight to a Hell realm were I to die without making some substantive changes in my life but the draw of sensuality was far too strong for a long time.

So, it was that almost 8 years ago, I found myself exasperated and alone in my nasty little 7th floor walk up apartment in Brooklyn when I decided I had nothing to lose by trying to meditate. At the time I hadn’t really heard of the Theravada and had been mostly exposed to Zen and Vajrayana. I had been reading Kapleau Roshi’s Three Pillars of Zen and decided to use the method taught therein for zazen. And, although there were no streaming lights or angelic choirs I felt a stillness and peace that soothed away the craziness in my heart and mind during that ten minute sit that verified my faith in the Dhamma and set me on my way.

Within months I had taken the 5 precepts (having giving up alcohol and drugs for good) and was making the rounds of the Buddhist temples and centers in NYC. At first I stuck mainly with Zen (Soto Zen specifically at the Village Zendo) but later, as a result of Ajahn Brahm’s online Dhamma talks) I began to read the Tipitaka and was hooked. Since then the Dhamma has become increasingly more important in my life and, in terms of its importance, I would place it on the same level as my kids and wife. In short order I began to practice with various insight groups until I eventually hooked up with a lay teacher who is a disciple of Ven. Thanissaro. For mos to f my time as an upasaka I have studied primarily in the Thai Forest tradition although I have recently begun to follow the teachings of Bhante Vimalaramsi. In essence, I truly feel that the Dhamma saved my life so I apologize if I ever come across as naïve due to an over-abundance of saddha. May we all taste the deathless in this lifetime! :anjali:
To avoid all evil, to cultivate good, and to cleanse one's mind — this is the teaching of the Buddhas.
-Dhp. 183

The Stoic Buddhist: ... pOR2p0uAdH
My Practice Blog:

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Mawkish1983 » Sun Dec 11, 2011 7:31 am

I'll share. I am a physics teacher in a very prestigious grammar school in the North of England. I was supposed to get my PhD in 2009, but I didn't. I am married and have absolutely no interest in raising children. I make stupid mistakes often, offend people, upset people, make enemies and generally leave destruction in my wake (all points I am not proud of). Friends are limited, even online friends are finding reason to abandon my virtual company. I discovered Buddhism in or around December 2007 and committed myself to the five precepts on 30th March, 2008. I identify myself as a Buddhist but my Dhamma knowledge is insufficient. I try, whenever I can, to improve it. I meditate less often than I'd like to but often enough to observe the benefit of regular sitting practice. My wife is an Atheist and has no interest in religion. I'm tall (2m), fat (120kg) and clumsy. I play the piano. I don't like TV but neither do I enjoy reading fiction. I'm an aspie. I'm 28 years, a number that annually increases. I am petrified of death but fascinated by it also. I'm a metalhead.

Is that enough?

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Kim OHara
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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Kim OHara » Sun Dec 25, 2011 5:46 am

Next, please!

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Reductor » Sun Dec 25, 2011 7:48 am

It's gone, Jim
Last edited by Reductor on Wed Dec 03, 2014 7:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by Kim OHara » Sun Dec 25, 2011 8:37 am

Thank you , thereductor

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Re: Members Bios - ndangelo

Post by ndangelo » Sat Jan 21, 2012 5:32 pm

Hello Everyone!

I hope you are all well. Here's a bit of my background.

I have studied various forms of Buddhism in my life. I took my
Precepts in the Chinese Theravada tradition – I still keep in touch
with a Bhikkhu who travels up and down the east coast of the US. We
trade notes and discuss sutta's and other Buddhist writings.

My meditation practice in generally Vipassana, but sometimes a feel like using a more Samatha method.

Some of the books I have read are "In the Buddha's Words, An Anthology
of Discourses on the Pali Canon." the "The Dhammapada.", The Wings to Awakening".
"The Compass of Zen" and "Zen Mind, Beginners Mind" and "The Truth About Rebirth".

I look forward to taking part in this Sangha!


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Re: Members Bios - please contribute yours

Post by SDC » Tue Jan 24, 2012 11:34 pm

This thread is good idea. Hope a lot of people decide to share.

I'm 30. Grew up just north of New York City. Been a skier since I was 5. Struggled through my teen years. Went to college. Did drugs and skied. Got a degree in psychology and sociology. Did more drugs and skied. Went on to be a mechanic/electrician. Stopped the drugs but not the skiing. Found Buddhism when I was 26. Got married 2 years ago to my girlfriend of 10 years. Bought a house in New Jersey. Became a supervisor. Still skiing. :smile:

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