You go, Osiris!

From the Windy City Times comes the story of Osiris Khepera, who threw an interesting birthday party for himself when he turned 30. And not just for himself -- someone else was born that day: his drag-queen alter ego, D'Lisha (left). As he told the WCT: "I had been tumbling the idea around in my head, but was afraid [to try drag] for years," Khepera said. "I have been [...]

New to the Under 35 Project: “Mindfully Moving Through Pain”

In this new contribution to the Under 35 Project, Scott Lillico shares a short piece on mindfulness, spirituality and reflections on dealing with pain. We move quickly. We emulate fast predators with quick wit and the speed to reach things first, attain successful means such as the best job, nicest house, social recognition, mating with the best genes. Then like a wrench into [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “A Good Death”

New from The Under 35 Project: A practitioner’s thoughts on grief, death, and the loss of a parent. By Christa Joy. In her last days of life, we tended to Mom as though she were able to feel us, hear us, and experience the sensory world with us. Hospice had told us to continue on as though she could hear what we were saying. We sat with her, cleaned her, spoke to her, but she [...]

New from The Under 35 Project: “Throw Out Your Empties”

In this new submission to The Under 35 Project, Kieran Cunningham issues a call to identify and eliminate "empties" -- those loose, unmindful expressions we use on a daily basis. “Words are important,” a friend once told me. I’d responded to his news of a significant and challenging life event with one of those banal, tired, clichéd expressions so many of us litter our speech [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “Tricking Myself Onto the Cushion”

A bizarre twist of events in Kathmandu led Jessica O'Neill into a meditation class – the place she was most scared to be. I arrived at the yoga studio at 9:10 that morning. The class wasn’t due to start until 9:30, so I was a little bit surprised to see a small clutch of people waiting outside the studio door. “Pfft. Eager!” I thought, a brief moment of irritation flickering in [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “If I Met Buddha on the Road”

Marie Rose White on what being ”Buddhist” really means to her. If I met Buddha on the road, would he care whether or not I called myself a Buddhist? Would it matter whether I identified as Theravada, Mahayana, Vajrayana, Zen, Tibetan, Pure Land…… Would he care if I chanted sutras correctly or whether I practiced Tonglen vs. Zazen? Would it matter if I looked the part, [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “Beautiful Beasts”

Meredith Arena on what it feels like to be embodied and alone. As I understand it, being alone is of great importance in Buddhism. When I sit quietly, following my breath as it travels through my body, holding myself upright and dignified in whatever way I am able on that given day, I am alone with myself. I am alone inside my body. When I began writing this, I had intended to [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “And then you find your essence…”

"They tell me that this is a story of courage," writes Sarah Lipton. "For me, it is a story that has been waiting to be shared for seven years." It’s the suddenness of the breeze that takes my breath away. Environmentally, I awaken, grasping that my dance of life is not separate from the dance of life occurring all around me – in the mountains, lakes, rivers, forests, oceans [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “A Lesson in Mindfulness on a Lazy Summer’s Day”

Christopher Willard's father’s magic trick taught him his first lesson on mindful awareness and the power of concentration, giving him insight into impermanence at the age of seven. The first meditation I ever learned was a gift from my father, when I was probably about six or seven years old. We were floating on a rubber raft in a pond, gazing up at the blue summer sky. Far [...]

From The Under 35 Project: “It May Be Basic”

Meditating in a storefront window on Broadway tends to make you remember why you got into this whole mindfulness thing in the first place, writes Emily Herzlin. When I decided to meditate in the display window of a home furnishings store on 18th Street and Broadway, I didn’t realize how many people lived in New York. Apparently the population of Manhattan is approximately 1.6 [...]