The Portland Chapter of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship is delighted to announce that Stephanie Kaza will give the keynote talk for Portland’s Thirteenth Annual Buddhist Festival in the Park. Ms. Kaza brings a wealth of knowledge and wisdom to the intersection of ecology and Buddhism. In these two realms it is a basic tenet that no individual stands alone, that we all need each other and the flora and fauna of this Earth to survive. We are interdependent.
In addition to her talk, Stephanie Kaza also leads a workshop supporting the theme. Buddhism offers tools for changing minds and behavior that can be beneficial to individuals and interdependence. Stephanie Kaza has spent a lifetime exploring and teaching this interconnection as a Soto Zen Buddhist, a professor at the University of Vermont, and as author and editor. Portland is enriched by her move here. Her books include Mindfully Green: A Personal and Spiritual Guide to Whole Earth Thinking; Hooked! Buddhist Writings on Greed, Desire, and the Urge to Consume; Dharma Rain: Sources of Buddhist Environmentalism.
As a city Portland has been feeling the effects of climate change and has enacted plans to become a sustainable city. Microclimate changes have caused more storms and flooding in areas even as the city works to complete major sewer system upgrade. The city’s interdependence is feeling the strain as people seeking this kind of reform migrate here, causing a housing crisis and bringing more vehicles, and pollution, to the streets. This migration signals a hunger from US citizens to see more of this kind of reform, and also points to the wealth and the growing pains a sustainability plan can bring to a city.