The Office of Academic Affairs
The Frederick P. Lenz Residential Fellowship in Buddhism and American Culture and Values
This is an opportunity for faculty and other professionals during the 2024–2025 academic year to spend a semester on the Naropa University campus in beautiful Boulder, Colorado, conducting a research, artistic, social action, or other project that relates Buddhist philosophy and practice to an aspect of American culture and values. This is an ideal place for a Buddhism fellowship, Religious Studies fellowship, or sabbatical fellowship in Religion.
Visiting Scholars and Events
April 6, 2023 – Barbara Bash: Mapping the Moment—The Calligraphic Voice
Barbara Bash is a lover of the alphabet, and a practitioner of calligraphic art with brush, pen, and pencil. Her contact with Chögyam Trungpa guided her into a deeper play with the ancient principles of heaven, earth and human in the creative act. She has collaborated at Naropa and beyond with musicians, storytellers and dancers in fresh forms of visual improvisation. Barbara teaches expressive brush, contemplative handwriting and illustrated journaling. Being part of the Creative Process team at the Authentic Leadership in Action conferences from 2001 – 2013 led to the creation of her big brush community events. She has trained in Nonviolent Communication and Focusing and leads circle practices and communication workshops. Barbara has written and illustrated a number of children’s books about the natural world and most recently True Nature : An Illustrated Journal of Four Seasons in Solitude. She lives in the Hudson Valley of New York. For more information about her work go to Her True Nature visual blog is
April 14, 2022 – Dr. Thupten Jinpa: A Buddhist Theory of Mental Transformation
February 4, 2021 – Dr. Jasmine Syedullah: Surviving White Supremacy: Towards a Radical Dharma of Staying Fugitive
March 5, 2020 - Zenju Earthlyn Manuel: The Lived Experience as the Gateway to Freedom
Born to parents who migrated from rural Louisiana, Zenju Earthlyn Manuel, an ordained Zen Buddhist priest, is the author of Sanctuary: A Meditation on Home, Homelessness, and Belonging, The Way of Tenderness: Awakening Through Race, Sexuality, and Gender, and Tell Me Something About Buddhism.
She is contributing author to many books, including Together We Are One, Dharma, Color and Culture: Voices From Western Buddhist Teachers of Color, and Lamp: Stories From Twenty-Five Centuries of Awakened Women.
She holds a master’s degree from UCLA and a PhD of Transformative Learning from the California Institute of Integral Studies. You can learn more at zenju.org.
March 14, 2019 - Venerable Pannavati: A Heart of Gold
March 1, 2018 - Lama Rod Owens: The Practice of Love and Rage as Tools for Liberation
Lama Rod is a founding teacher for the Awaken meditation app that offers meditations and contemplations focused on social change. He has been published and featured in several publications including Buddhadharma, Lion’s Roar, Tricycle, The Harvard Divinity Bulletin, Spirit Magazine, and contributed the chapter on working with anger for the recent publication Real World Mindfulness for Beginners. He is a regular guest on SiriusXM’s Urban View hosted by journalist and publisher Karen Hunter. He has offered talks, retreats, and workshops for many organizations and universities including New York University, Yale University, Harvard University, Harvard Law School, Columbia Law School, Tufts University, University of Vermont, and Boston College.
Lama Rod facilitates undoing patriarchy workshops for male identified practitioners in Brooklyn and Boston and his current writing projects include patriarchy in spiritual communities, sexuality and ethics, and fatness and spirituality. Lama Rod can be reached at www.lamarod.com.
March 16, 2017 - Lama Surya Das: Make Me One With Everything: Buddhist Meditations to Awaken from the Illusion of Separation
Dr. Alfred Kaszniak: Contemplative Practice in a Multitasking World, 2016
Reverend angel Kyodo williams: Beyond Buddhism: What We Need to Lose To Save What We Love, 2015
Sharon Salzberg: Real Happiness at Work, 2014
- Meredith Monk: An Evening with Meredith Monk, 2013
- Gary Snyder: On the topic of Buddhism, American Culture and Value, 2011
- Joanna Macy: Untitled, 2011
- Paula Green, EdD: Building Peace in a Stormy World: A Journey of Service, Hope, and Faith, 2010
- Jan Willis, PhD: Dharma Diversity: The Many Forms and Faces of Buddhism in America, 2009
- Roshi Pat Enkyo O’Hara, PhD: Five Expressions of Zen: A Path to Service, 2009
- José Cabezón, PhD: Thinking through Texts: Toward a Critical Buddhist Theology of Sexuality, 2008
- Mark Silk, PhD: The International Conference on Media, Spiritualities and Social Change, 2008