Beth has practiced meditation, according to the Vipassana tradition, for more than 10 years. She works as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker, supervising and teaching psychotherapist trainees. She also volunteers as a Buddhist Chaplain at Laguna Honda Hospital and is continuing her training in spiritual caregiving, which began at the Sati Center and continues through Clinical Pastoral Education at the Pacific Institute of Essential Conversations. Beth regularly teaches medical and mental health providers on topics related to disability liberation and unlearning racism. She has cerebral palsy and uses a wheelchair.
Anne Finger has been practicing at East Bay Meditation Center for over a decade. She is committed to bringing the needs and joys of the disabled community to our sangha. In addition to her practice at EBMC, she has also attended retreats at Spirit Rock as well as at Gaia House in the UK and also trained in the chaplaincy training program at Sati Center.
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Mushim Patricia Ikeda
Mushim is a core teacher at EBMC. She has experience in both monastic and lay Buddhist practice, and she is also a diversity and inclusion consultant, an author, and a mother. Mushim has Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS), a disability that is an environmental illness now affecting increasing numbers of people in our society. Mushim serves part-time on staff as EBMC’s community coordinator, working with volunteers and in communications.
Master John W. Ellis IV
Master Ellis is a martial artist with more than 30 years of experience in helping people strengthen the connections between the body, mind and spirit. He teaches toddlers, youth, adults, senior citizens, athletes, the physically challenged, and autistic children. He has more than 25 years of meditation practice in Christian, Zen, Vipassana and New Thought traditions; and has written about martial arts, spirituality, and alternative health for major media. He currently teaches at Ananda Martial Arts and Fitness Academy in Oakland.
“Coach Kenji” has been meditating for about half of his adult life. He graduated from both of EBMC’s yearlong programs, Commit to Dharma and Practice in Transformative Action. As someone who has lived with CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) for over two decades, he was on the team that addressed accessibility issues for EBMC at the old Broadway Street location, and he is an occasional temple consultant. Kenji moved to the Bay Area in 1993 to act as a community organizer, nationally, for grassroots gay Asian and Pacific Islander HIV prevention groups. As a business and life coach he focuses on other entrepreneurial types who also grapple with ADHD. He has a unique perspective as a bi-racial/bi-cultural/bi-coastal, disabled, gay man.
Renato P. Almanzor, PhD