“Luminous is the Mind”
What I Do
I teach and mentor Insight Meditation practitioners to refine their mindfulness practice, both on the meditation cushion and in daily life. As a result of this refinement, practitioners begin to uproot the habits of mind that hinder them from experiencing presence, ease, and joy, and that limit their potential to live from their deepest intentions.
Mindfulness, when aligned with nourishing heart qualities and non-harming towards ourselves and others, is a potent vehicle for developing deep, intuitive insight into the truth of the way things are. It is therefore the foundation of liberating our hearts and minds.
Mindfulness aimed towards awakening in this way is called Insight Meditation in English, or Vipassana (clear seeing) in the language of the Buddha’s teachings. Vipassana is rooted in the Theravada Buddhist tradition, held and preserved for centuries primarily by the people of South and Southeast Asia.
Refining our mindfulness practice involves inclining towards a deeply restful, allowing attention, opening to the experience of calm and joy. We can begin to uncloud our attention by cultivating a clearer perception of moment-to-moment experience. Letting go of a mistaken sense of ownership of passing experience deepens understanding of the impermanent, impersonal, and conditioned nature of existence.
I find fulfillment when I am able, through teaching and mentoring, to support people in recognizing the capacity to nurture these qualities within themselves.
I know that these capacities of mind, the seeds of awakening, are available to all of us.
I have practiced Insight Meditation since 2003. In the early years of my practice, I received instruction from a teacher in the lineage of Mahasi Sayadaw, a Burmese Theravada Buddhist monk and meditation master. After undertaking this practice, I experienced an immediate progressive shift. Over time, this opened my heart to more liberating insights into the universal characteristics of impermanence, not-self, and the unsatisfactory nature of conditioned phenomena. My teachings stem from this lineage, as my aim is to transmit my direct experience of the transformative capacity of mindfulness and dharma practice.
Over the years, I have gratefully drawn influence from teachings and teachers within and outside of the Mahasi lineage, including Howard Cohn, Kamala Masters, Gil Fronsdal, Joseph Goldstein, Sayadaw U Tejaniya, and Ayya Anandabodhi. I’ve undertaken numerous long retreats, in both the United States and Myanmar.
Before entering the path of teaching and mentoring, I was a criminal defense lawyer in California for over 20 years. While living in California, I was a leader of Mission Dharma in San Francisco. In 2016, I co-founded the San Francisco People of Color Insight Sangha with Victoria Cary. I remained a core teacher with the group until the spring of 2019, when I relocated to Western Massachusetts. From 2020-2021, I served as the Interim Guiding Teacher of Insight Meditation Community of Western Massachusetts. I was trained and authorized to teach by Insight Meditation Society, in Barre, Massachusetts, through their 2017-2021 teacher training program.
I am South Asian (Indian)-American and felt an initial motivation to explore dharma practice upon encountering the Buddha’s teachings rejecting caste as a measure of worth and of capacity for awakening. I believe classical Buddhist practices, designed to cultivate compassion, non-greed, non-hatred, and non-delusion, are uniquely potent vehicles for empowering people in marginalized communities and effecting social change.
"The first thing is to love yourself. You cannot progress by self-doubt. You can only progress by self-love."
Writing and Collaboration
Tricycle Magazine Online, Buddhist Justice Versus American Justice, by Tuere Sala and Tara Mulay, May 25, 2021
Buddhist Justice Reporter, “Indifference or Compassion,” A Buddhist Response to the trial of Derek Chauvin for the Murder of George Floyd, April 19, 2021