Translating Spirituality Into Real Life: An interview with the late Sufi master, Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan (

Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan died on June 17th [2004] at the age of 87 (see our online  memorial). Lawrence Pintak interviewed Pir Vilayat and wrote this article in  2000. “The whole quest of Sufism is the search for the hidden secret, the desire to know,” says Pir Vilayat Inayat Khan. “But the secret can only […]

Gene Smith’s Mission (BuddhaDharma)

Vol. 1, No. 1 2002 Lawrence Pintak profiles Gene Smith, the man from Ogden, Utah who single-handedly spearheaded the preservation of thousands of Tibetan texts after the Chinese invasion of Tibet in 1959. Smith’s mission continues. He has spent his life wrapped in the dharma. For the past 40 years, Gene Smith has lived, breathed […]

Insight Meditation at 25 (Shambhala Sun)

Shambhala Sun, November 2001 The idea was almost too ridiculous to contemplate. Three twenty-something meditation teachers, who had spent most of their adult lives wandering around Asia, now stood in front of a 150-room, former Catholic monastery-complete with bowling alley-in the hills of central Massachusetts. They were debating whether to buy it. The plan was […]

The Terror Koan: American Buddhists contemplate violence (

Sept. 2001 The image is seared into our collective consciousness: Buddhist monks setting  themselves on fire to protest the war in Vietnam. But as they counsel the nation not to act out of a desire for revenge, many  leading Buddhist teachers are reluctantly conceding that even a religion devoted  to peace recognizes that there are […]

“Something Has to Change”: Blacks in American Buddhism (Shambhala Sun)

Shambhala Sun, September 2001. Lawrence Pintak tells the compelling stories of three African-American dharma teachers. He asks them why American Buddhism attracts so few people of color and what can be done about it. Jan Willis was feeling euphoric. Sitting in the basement of a church in London’s impoverished East End last summer, she looked […]

Balancing Business With Buddha: More and more executives and entrepreneurs are bringing the dharma to the art of the deal (

June 2001 The wise and moral man Shines like a fire on a hilltop Who does  not hurt the flower. Such a man makes his pile As an anthill,  gradually Grown wealthy, he thus And firmly binds his friends To  himself. –Singaalovaada Sutra “Buddhist principles can help cut inventory and reduce supply chain costs.” That […]

The Dharma Scribe (

A former physician and monk from Australia named Nick Ribush could be the reason you’re reading this story. You have probably never heard his name, but if you’ve ever picked up a book  about Buddhism, Nick Ribush has had an impact on your life. These days, chains like Barnes & Noble have entire aisles devoted […]

‘A Strong Voice Coming Up’: A young (and rare) woman lama talks about fear, American dharma, and the importance of ‘ripping your heart out’ (

October 2000 Venerable Khandro Rinpoche is part of a new generation of Western-educated,  English-speaking Tibetan teachers reared in exile. She is also a rarity in the  male-dominated world of Tibetan Buddhism: a highly revered female teacher. Tibetans recognize Khandro Rinpoche, 33, as a manifestation of the  female Buddha Tara. The daughter of H.E. Mindrolling Rinpoche, […]

A Share of the Soil

Worcester Magazine (2000) What would make a perfectly ordinary suburban family from suburban Boston with two jobs, two cars and three kids toss everything and go off and become farmers? Organic farmers, no less..? “I really thought he was going through a mid-life crisis,” recalls Karen Franczyk of the day her husband, Don, announced he […]

Tibet’s Suffering: Visiting lama survived 20 years in Chinese jail

Worcester Magazine (Jan. 2000) The flight into exile of one of Tibet’s most revered religious leaders this month once more highlights the continuing suffering of the Tibetan people under China’s 50-year occupation. The Karmapa, head of one of the main branches of Tibetan Buddhism, arrived in India on Jan. 5, after a seven-day trek across […]