Personalized Affiliation: Buddhism
Spiritual Spheres: Buddhism, Christianity, Interfaith, Interspiritual, Spiritual but Not Religious, Spiritual Independent
Category: Spiritual Companion/Director, Retreat Center, Chaplain
Focus Area: BIPOC, Dying/Sick/Hospice, Education, Enneagram, Grief and Loss, Health Care, LGBTQIA+, Mental Health/Depression, Mindfulness/Meditation, Women's Issues
Profile: Greetings! Here's a bit of history about me. I began working as a spiritual companion when I was a volunteer with Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco. Thereafter, I sought education from Sati Center for Buddhist Studies, a certificate in spiritual direction from Mercy Center, a M.A. in Culture and Spirituality from Holy Names University, then a Th.D. in Pastoral Counseling from Columbia Theological Seminary, all between 2003 and 2016. My post-doctoral work was completed at Harvard Divinity School. Sounds heady, right? Believe me when I say, this all comes in handy when I'm teaching! But I'm not always teaching. While in the act of companioning, I find that the supervised training in chaplaincy, spiritual direction, and pastoral counseling — about five years of presenting cases and receiving feedback — have been greatly beneficial. In addition to study and supervision, I've done some research on pastoral care. My research has resulted in some articles and books. One book is "Object Relations, Buddhism, and Relationality in Womanist Practical Theology" and the other book is "Buddhist-Christian Dialogue, U.S. Law, and Womanist Theology for Transgender Spiritual Care." My research and writing has practical implications, including the research I did on Women, Spirituality, and Cancer. Taking education, supervised training, research and writing all together, I am now co-founder of Center of the Heart and founder of Audre: Spiritual Care for Women with Cancer. I'm delighted to count Diane Millis and John Lee as my spiritual direction colleagues, and proud to serve with several chaplains, an artist, tai chi teacher, and yoga teacher in Audre.