Cultivating Mindful Awareness - Transforming Depression and Anxiety | Befriending Emotions

Lee Lipp, Ph.D.

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Facilitator Bios

Ryushin Paul Haller

Ryushin Paul HallerRyushin Paul Haller is from Belfast, Northern Ireland. He left home in 1971, lived in London for a year, then traveled throughout Europe, the middle east, Russia, and Afghanistan. He ended up in Japan, where he lived for a year and was introduced to Zen. Paul was ordained by Zentatsu Richard Baker in 1980, who gave him the name Ryushin Zendo, “Dragon Heart, Zen Way.” In 1993 he received Dharma Transmission from Sojun Mel Weitsman.

As SFZC’s Co-Abbot and City Center Abbot under the Abbacy Restructuring from 2003 to 2012, Ryushin Paul has taught Zen, mindfulness, and meditation for over 25 years throughout the U.S. and Europe. He has created programs that assist with depression and substance abuse, has taught in prisons, and has a long involvement with the Zen Hospice Project.

Myogen Steve Stücky

Myogen Steve StückyMyogen Steve Stücky has been practicing Zen for 35 years and received Dharma Transmission from Sojun Mel Weitsman in 1993. He became co-Abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center in February 2007 and also serves as guiding teacher of Dharma Eye Zen Center in San Rafael ( Steve also is a co-leader of the San Quentin Buddhadharma Sangha. For many years he supported a family as a self-employed landscape designer/contractor. He has three adult children and one grandchild and currently lives with his spouse, Lane Olson, in Rohnert Park. Over the past several years, Steve has been in training as an Internal Family Systems Therapist and Pastoral Counselor, and was a previous board president of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association.

Martina Schneider, M.S.

Martina SchneiderMartina Schneider has been a student of the Dharma since 1998. She has studied and practiced Vipassana meditation in the United States, India and Burma, where she was ordained as a nun. Inspired by the teachings of the Buddha she has combined her practice with social engagement and has worked extensively with homeless and underrepresented populations, counseled people who are incarcerated, and volunteered with the Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco. Her interest in the combination of mindfulness practices with psychotherapy, informs her approach in her Marriage and Family Therapy private practice in San Francisco as well as the workshops she teaches in the Bay area.

Having been in teacher training with Jack Kornfield, Martina is a Spirit Rock Meditation Center and San Francisco Insight Meditation Center teacher. Besides having taught at a variety of Buddhist insight centers in the U.S., she brings mindfulness practices to businesses and mental health organizations.

Erin Selover, M.S.

Erin SeloverErin Selover started her Buddhist meditation practice over 10 years ago while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Kingdom of Tonga. She has taught meditation retreats nationally for teenagers and teaches the Mindfulness Based Emotional Balance curriculm developed by Margaret Cullen. In addition to sharing Dharma, she is a psychotherapist in private practice in Oakland specializing in mindfulness-based approaches. She is currently being trained to teach meditation in the Spirit Rock and IMS teacher training program. For more information, visit

Kanzan David Zimmerman

Rev. David ZimmermanRev. Kanzan David Zimmerman has been practicing Soto Zen for 25 years, 15 of which have been in residence at San Francisco Zen Center. He was ordained as a priest in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi by Rev. Teah Strozer in 2006, and spent eight years at Tassajara Zen Mountain Center, where he held a number of positions, including monastery director and head monk (shuso). Prior to his current role as the head of practice (tanto) at City Center, David also served as SFZC program director and corporate secretary. David has a Certificate of Zen Ministry through the Shogaku Zen Institute/Zen Priest Training Seminary, serves on the SFZC Cultural Inclusivity & Awareness Committee, and is a co-facilitator of Queer Dharma. He regularly leads retreats, workshops and classes at SFZC and other dharma centers, particularly on transforming depression and anxiety, with Dr. Lee Lipp.

Seguin Sellars Spear

Seguin Sellars SpearSeguin is a licensed clinical social worker integrating mindfulness practice & psychotherapy. She has helped people with chronic pain conditions & life-threatening illness, chronic and persistent mental illness, substance abuse issues, troubled adolescents, and people impacted by HIV/AIDS. Seguin, a mobile psychiatric crisis team clinician for 4 yrs, worked at the University of California, San Francisco. She began meditating in 1996 living at San Francisco Zen Center and Tassajara Zen Mountain Center as a resident practitioner for 6 years. In 2008, Seguin was ordained in the Soto Zen Buddhist lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi. She supports Dr. Lipp by facilitating Transforming Anxiety & Depression practice classes and offers mindfulness coaching and psychotherapy via Skype at

Mushim Ikeda-Nash

Mushim Ikeda-NashMushim Ikeda-Nash is a Buddhist meditation teacher, writer, and social justice community activist. She is one of three women portrayed in the documentary film, Acting on Faith: Women’s New Religious Activism in America, distributed by the Pluralism Project at Harvard University. She has done both monastic and lay Zen Buddhist practice over the past twenty years, in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and S. Korea. Mushim teaches meditation retreats for people of color and social justice activists nationally. She is a core teacher at EBMC and member of the EBMC Leadership Sangha.

Dr. Ernest Brown

Ernest BrownDr. Ernest Brown who has held leadership roles in many Go organizations, teaches the Asian game of Go at the City Center site of the San Francisco Zen Center. Dr. Brown received a Ph.D. in East/West Psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies. He has worked for the past twenty years with youth in San Francisco and presently is the clinical director of Youth Treatment and Education Center. In addition to Zazen his other mindfulness activities include Tai Chi Chuan and Japanese Tea Ceremony. He has served on the boards of the New College of California, the Buddhist Church of San Francisco, the American Go Association, the San Francisco Go Club and the SFZC’s Board of Directors.

Marty L. Cooper M.A., MFT

Marty L. CooperMarty Cooper is a practitioner of Vipassana meditation under S.N.Goenka since 1994, and student of Zen teacher Adyashanti. He is a licensed psychotherapist (MFT 42185) and has a private practice focusing on treating depression and anxiety from a mindfulness perspective. Marty has taught MBCT classes for the last several years.

Dana Velden

Dana VeldenDana Velden is a Zen Buddhist priest and former resident of the San Francisco Zen Center where she lived and studied for 15 years. Today, she continues to teach at Zen Center, where she offers classes on Zen and Cooking and functions as a practice leader for year-long, non-residential study programs. She is excited to explore how meditation and mindfulness can be helpful for people living in the larger world, with a particular interest in brining mindfulness to the kitchen. You can read her weekly blog, Weekend Meditation, every Sunday on The Kitchn.

Lisa Hoffman

Lisa HoffmanLisa Hoffman studied with and received Zen priest ordination from Darlene Surei Kenpo Cohen in the Shunryu Suzuki Roshi lineage at Russian River Zendo and San Francisco Zen Center. Lisa integrates compassion and awareness practices as she teaches mindfulness and meditation to groups and offers spiritual guidance to individuals. Lisa’s passion is to offer classic teachings in ways that are relevant and helpful to the complexities and challenges of 21st century life, from navigating complicated relationships with ourselves and others, to handling 24/7 communications and information overload.

Lisa also brings 25 years of experience and enthusiasm to nonprofit fund and board development, facilitation, and coaching. Lisa's web site.

Tanya Takacs

Tanya TakacsTanya Takacs started meditating in 1998 and has been a resident of San Francisco Zen Center for over 10 years. In 2010, as Abbot Steve Stucky's assistant, Tanya assisted several workshops that Steve co-taught with Dr. Lipp. Tanya joined the team facilitating the ongoing Transforming Depression and Anxiety practice class at Zen Center in 2012. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Counseling Psychology at CIIS with the intention to pursue a career as a psychotherapist.

Pawan Bareja

Pawan BarejaPawan Bareja, Ph.D., has practiced Vipassana meditation for over 10 years.  She is a Somatic Experiencing (SE) Trauma Resolution Practitioner, a Buddhist Ritual Minister and has assisted several daylongs at Spirit Rock, including the annual “Care Providers” daylong.  She is a graduate from Spirit Rock’s Community Dharma Leadership Program. In her private practice, she works with symptoms of stress, anxiety and trauma in a diverse population of clients.  She uses trauma resolution techniques and mindfulness meditation to help her clients find ease in their daily lives.  She teaches classes on mindfulness and trauma in the Castro district in San Francisco.

Paul Irving

Paul IrvingPaul Irving has practiced in Eastern and Western contemplative traditions for over 40 years. Having completed Spirit Rock’s Community Dharma Leader Program in 2012 he holds Spirit Rock Meditation Center’s certification to teach in the community. Much of his teaching has been at San Francisco Insight where he has also served as SFI’s Board President. Additionally, Paul is one the facilitators for the Transforming Depression and Anxiety Practice Class that meets weekly at San Francisco Zen Center. He currently is the Practice Manager of four allied medical clinics at UCSF and is engaged in moment-to-moment family practice with a husband, a teenager, and a rambunctious dog.