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Dharma Teachers of Gaia House
Phyllis Hicks

Ramiro Ortega

Reb Anderson
Tenshin Reb Anderson was born in Mississippi, grew up in Minnesota, and left advanced study in mathematics and Western psychology to come to Zen Center in 1967. He practiced with Suzuki Roshi, who ordained him as a priest in 1970 and gave him the name Tenshin Zenki ("Naturally Real, The Whole Works"). He received dharma transmission in 1983 and served as abbot of San Francisco Zen Center's three training centers (City Center, Green Gulch Farm, and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center) from 1986 to 1995. Tenshin Reb Anderson continues to teach at Zen Center, living with his family at Green Gulch Farm. He is author of Warm Smiles from Cold Mountains: Dharma Talks on Zen Meditation and Being Upright: Zen Meditation and the Bodhisattva Precepts. Published in 2012: The Third Turning of the Wheel: Wisdom of the Samdhinirmocana Sutra, a guidebook to the workings of consciousness and compassionate awakening.

River Wolton
River Wolton attended her first Insight Meditation retreat in 2000, and subsequently helped to establish Sheffield Insight Meditation (UK). She is a Community Dharma Leader authorised by Gaia House Teacher Council, and has completed Dharma Teacher Training with Bodhi College. A former Derbyshire Poet Laureate, she has led writing and arts projects for many years, and is an activist in the LGBTQI+ community.

Rob Burbea
ROB BURBEA (1965-2020) was Gaia House’s much-loved resident teacher for 10 years from 2005 - 2015, when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. During his time at Gaia House, Rob wrote Seeing that Frees: Meditations on Emptiness and Dependent Arising (seeingthatfrees.com) – an important and influential work that continues to shape and open the meditative exploration of many. Emerging from this deep experiential understanding of emptiness, Rob dedicated much of his time and energy during the last years of his life to conceiving, developing, and establishing a new body of teachings that he called ‘A Soulmaking Dharma’. Before his death, Rob initiated the Hermes Amara Foundation (HAF), an organisation that is working to preserve and develop Rob's vast Dharma teaching legacy, and to support practitioners and teachers who are engaged with these teachings. To join the HAF mailing list and find out more about Rob's work please go to hermesamara.org or get in touch at hermes.amara@gmail.com Rob was also a guiding teacher of Freely Given Retreats (freelygivenretreats.org), a co-founder of Sanghaseva, an organisation exploring the Dharma through international service work (sanghaseva.org) and a co-initiator of DANCE, the Dharma Action Network for Climate Engagement (thedancewebsite.org).

Rodney Smith
More and more, the teaching practice takes me into the community where I engage directly with students. My focus right now is on bringing the continuity of the Dharma into the market place. Although retreating is an important form for self-knowledge, I find myself less interested in the immediate results of a retreat and more interested in helping students investigate their relationship to the ups and downs of their everyday life.

Russell Walker

Ruth King
Ruth King is an insight meditation teacher and emotional wisdom author and life coach. Mentored in Theravada Buddhism and the Dzogchen tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, King teaches at insight meditation communities nationwide and offers the Mindful of Race Training program to teams and organizations. King is on the teacher’s council at Spirit Rock Meditation Center, and is the author of several publications including Mindful of Race: Transforming Racism From The Inside Out. www.RuthKing.net

Sari Markkanen
SARI MARKKANEN completed Gaia House Community Dharma Leader training. She is in training to be Insight meditation teacher guided by Rob Burbea, Martine Batchelor and Caroline Jones. She offers dharma activities and assists teachers in retreats in Finland. Sari also teaches mindfulness, mindful self-compassion and mindfulness in schools. She has written two books about mindfulness for children.

Sharda Rogell
My focus in teaching is to provide the support that students need to turn their life to the dharma, to truth, and to find ways to come out of their pain and suffering. The retreat experience is an invaluable aid to this exploration; however, what matters more is how one integrates this under- standing into everyday life.

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