_Correction: Ward was not a Liberian rebel, but rather was inspired by a Liberian rebel that he met. The Collegian regrets its error.
Everyone has their own coping methods, and according Larry Ward and his wife Peggy Rowe, Zen is just another school of thought that helps to ease the mind and bring life to the body.
â€œWe donâ€™t convert people,â€ Ward said. â€œ…they instead keep their beliefs and place Buddhist philosophies on top of that.â€
Ward and Rowe, who were ordained by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh as dharma teachers in 2001, spoke at CSU on Friday during an Associated Students of CSU and Zen Club sponsored event.
â€œZen is not considered a religion, but a way in which a person thinks mindfully and lives fully in the moment,â€ said Zen Club President Erich Stroheim.
During the event, Ward spoke of the seeds in the mind which include every human emotion. These seeds are contained in the lower mind, or the, â€œstorehouse,â€ and whenever we place an emphasis on them, they become, â€œperfumed,â€ and rise to the upper mind.
Rowe got the audience involved, leading them through breathing and thinking medication exercises.
â€œIâ€™m trying to find a spiritual practice, and Iâ€™m on the edges of wanting to become a Buddhist,â€ said Kim Fessended, one of the eventâ€™s attendees.
Ward began his journey to Buddhism as a member of the Institute of Cultural Affairs, and currently serves as adjunct faculty at Claremont Graduate University and is the director of cultural and linguistic services at Palomar Pomerado Health System.
Rowe has a Ph. D. in Adult Education and co-authored, â€œLoveâ€™s Garden: A Guide to Mindful Relationships,â€ with Ward, which won an award as the â€œBest Buddhist Bookâ€ in 2009.
Ward and Rowe have lived in Colorado for a year, and have come to CSU before to discuss Zen meditation.
â€œWe are treated like family here and the feeling of the Rocky Mountains is like an old soul,â€ Rowe said.
During their discussion, Rowe and Ward emphasized that everyone has the capacity to learn spirituality and gain knowledge of ideologies.
â€œItâ€™s all about the individual and what they do about it,â€ Ward said.
Collegian writer Moonier Said can be reached at email@example.com.