Jean Haley has been studying and practicing Buddhism since 1998. She completed the Community Dharma Leader’s training through Spirit Rock Meditation Center in 2012 and has been a guest teacher at Common Ground and elsewhere since then. She is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker in private practice and also teaches at the Center for Spirituality & Healing at the University of Minnesota.
Byakuren (White Lotus) Judith Ragir is the Senior Dharma Teacher at Clouds in Water Zen Center. She studied with Dainin Katagiri Roshi from 1973-1990 at the Minnesota Zen Meditation Center in Minneapolis. Following his death in 1990, Judith was instrumental in founding the Clouds in Water Zen Center in St. Paul where she was a senior teacher for nine years. In December 2007, Joen Snyder-O’Neal, of Compassionate Ocean Dharma Center, bestowed on Judith Dharma Transmission, the authorization to teach. This transmission is in Katagiri Roshi’s lineage.
Kaia Svien is an instructor, author, and counselor with 20 years experience teaching Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and related courses. She became interested in mindfulness-based techniques after finding herself struggling with depression. She has taught Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and other mindfulness related courses at Abbott Northwestern Hospital’s Penny George Institute for Health and Healing, the Center for Spirituality and Healing at the University of MN, and the Holistic Health Studies program at St. Catherine University as well as local hospitals, women’s prisons, and venues throughout the Twin Cities. Kaia has studied with Joanna Macy and is passionate about applying the principles of buddhism to our understanding of climate change and other social issues that are based in the delusion of separation.
Kaia is a lover of wilderness, myth and metaphor and has authored To Follow the Moon, a novel following three friends seeking to gain wisdom by following the Moon through its cycles. She is also co-founder of the Iraqi and American Reconciliation Project and the Elda Reading & Math Center. She is a lead teacher of Open Hearted Resiliency, a specialist in Learning Differences (SLBP), and holds a M.S. in Education and B.A. Art History.
It has long been important for me to offer the purity of the teachings of the Buddha in a way that connects with our common sense and compassion as human beings, which allows for the natural blossoming of wisdom.
Kevin Griffin is the author of the seminal 2004 book "One Breath at a Time: Buddhism and the Twelve Steps" and the recent "A Burning Desire: Dharma God and the Path of Recovery". He has been practicing Buddhist meditation for three decades and been in recovery since 1985. He’s been a meditation teacher for almost fifteen years. His teacher training was at Spirit Rock Meditation Center where he currently leads Dharma and Recovery classes.
Kyoko Katayama, a psychotherapist for over 30 years, has made an intention and practice of integrating her spiritual life, her professional work, and personal experiences towards ease and integrity in all that she does. She has been a student of dharma, practicing at Common Ground since 1999. She has completed a two-year study and practice on Satipatthana (The Foundations of Mindfulness) with Matthew Flickstein.
Larry Yang, a longtime meditator, trained as a psychotherapist, has taught meditation since 1999 and is a core teacher at East Bay Meditation Center in Oakland, CA. He has practiced in Southeast Asia and was a Buddhist monk in Thailand.