I grew up in a physically dangerous and racially-charged environment in Chicago. I experienced a lot of stress and violence at home, and became a depressed, anxious, and fearful kid.
Everything changed around the time I turned eight years old. That was when I first started watching the old TV show, Kung Fu, starring a young David Carradine. The show got me interested in meditation and offered a much-needed escape from reality. By the time I was eleven, I was already devouring books on existentialism and zen buddhism. I just couldn’t get enough of it.
I continued to deal with violence throughout my young adult life. By the time I entered college, debilitating panic attacks had become a consistent struggle and my worldview was fearful and rigid.
While visiting friends in northern Minnesota, my life turned a corner. I was gazing up at the night sky when I realized that I could be right and wrong in the same moment. My view of myself softened. I understood how damaging a self-righteous person can be and I gave myself permission to understand others and began using meditation as a tool for navigating life’s challenges.
After that night, I started down a path to connecting others with a deeper sense of self. I started off with de-escalation, working in a psyche ward for over twenty years, then moved on to a specialty school helping to calm and understand students with developmental issues. I also worked eight years with people with autism. These experiences helped to ground me in the moment, I learned quickly how to relate to people when they couldn’t relate to me.
In 1999, I became a certified yoga instructor. I’ve struggled with sports-related injuries throughout my life and yoga is a great instrument for healing and mitigating pain. Blending meditation with my own unique approach to Kripalu yoga, I’ve also used my practice to help myself and others cope with complications caused by injury and aging.
We all have our own internal North Star. Practice is about realigning our inner compass to get us back on track. It’s about bringing us to ourselves. I’ve studied and practiced meditation for over forty years and have been teaching it for over twenty-five. My practice was created out of a need to ground, understand, and heal myself, and has grown into a lifelong love for meditation. I’ve dedicated my life to sharing this deep and abiding passion for practice by helping others reach fulfillment.