Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

from 6:00pm-7:00pm ET 


Join Buddhist teacher and author Ethan Nichtern, along with special guests Shannon Watts, and Shelly Tygielski for a free online discussion about engaged Buddhism and Dharma Moon's upcoming Yearlong Buddhist Studies course beginning in January 2023.

They will discuss the importance of studying Buddhism in a way that pushes us deeper into engagement with this messy and chaotic world, instead of retreating from it.

The Yearlong Buddhist Studies course offers a deep training in meditation, Buddhist philosophy and psychology, spanning the entire 2023 year. 

Designed to be highly practical (and occasionally geeky), it will be a comprehensive overview of the Buddhist path, with an emphasis on the psychological, metaphysical, and socially engaged elements, and will help you establish or reestablish a commitment to regular meditation practice through a variety of Buddhist techniques.

This online session will cover both Year One and Year Two of the Yearlong Buddhist Studies Course.


Ethan Nichtern is a Senior Buddhist teacher, author, and lecturer. For the past 19 years, Ethan has taught meditation and Buddhist psychology classes and workshops around New York City, North America and Europe, along with working with students privately.

He was formerly on the part-time faculty at Eugene Lang College at New School University and has lectured at Brown, Wesleyan, Yale, NYU, FIT, Antioch and other universities, and as well at many other meditation/yoga centers and conferences around the country and world.

Ethan is the author of the critically acclaimed book The Road Home: A Contemporary Exploration of the Buddhist Path and his most recent book, The Dharma of The Princess Bride: What The Coolest Fairy Tale of Our Time Can Teach Us About Buddhism and Relationships. He is also the author of One City: A Declaration of Interdependence, and the Novella/poetry collection, Your Emoticons Won’t Save You.

He founded and served as executive director (2007-11) of the Interdependence Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to secular Buddhist practice and transformational activism and arts.

Ethan primarily studied in Shambhala and Tibetan traditions, as well as Theravadan and Soto Zen Buddhism. Ethan is an avid yoga practitioner. He served as Shastri, or Senior Teacher-In-Residence, for the Shambhala Meditation Center of New York from 2010-18.

In 2018, Ethan launched his podcast, The Road Home, available on iTunes, Spotify and wherever you listen to podcasts.

Ethan has been featured on CNN, NPR, ABC/Yahoo News, The New York Times,, Business Insider, Nautilus, and Vice to discuss Buddhism and meditation in the 21st Century. His articles have been featured on The Huffington Post, Beliefnet, Shambhala Sun, Tricycle Magazine, BuddhaDharma Magazine, and Reality Sandwich as well as other online publications.

Shannon Watts is the founder and a full-time volunteer with the nation’s largest grassroots group fighting against gun violence, Moms Demand Action. With nearly 10 million supporters and a chapter in every state, Moms Demand Action and its partner, Everytown for Gun Safety, have stopped the NRA’s priority legislation in statehouses roughly 90% of the time, and passed hundreds of gun safety laws across the country, changed corporate policies and educated Americans about secure gun storage. This grassroots movement helped break through the logjam in Congress and pass the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, the first gun safety bill in 26 years. Watts is also an active board member of Emerge America, one of the nation’s leading organizations for recruiting and training women to run for office, and Advance Peace, a prominent community-based organization that works to end cyclical and retaliatory gun violence in American urban neighborhoods. Watts was named one of Glamour’s 2022 Women of the Year and her book, Fight Like a Mother: How a Grassroots Movement Took on the Gun Lobby and Why Women Will Change the World, was released in May of 2019.

Shelly Tygielski is a fierce justice warrior and social activist. She combines the pragmatic business skills she learned in the corporate world with the tenets of mediation and mindfulness to make the world a better place. 

Shelly is deeply involved in offering trauma-informed healing practices to communities affected by gun violence and mass shootings and has led fully funded retreats for survivors and victims’ families representing Parkland, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas, Aurora, Columbine and more. She was featured on the cover of Mindful Magazine in June 2019 for her work in this space.

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, once again Shelly rose to the occasion. On March 14th, 2020, at the dawn of the crisis, she posted two simple Google forms online. One read “Get Help” the other “Give Help”. The next morning, she was shocked to find hundreds of requests from both sides of the equation. She began directly matching those in need with patrons willing to help them meet their needs and the Pandemic of Love movement was born. Those few hundred requests grew to thousands; which grew to over 600,000 people matched within six months. 

To date, Pandemic of Love boasts nearly 4000 volunteers worldwide and has directly exchanged nearly $100 million in donations and has connected over 3 million people. It has been featured on over 100 media outlets, including CNN, BBC and The Kelly Clarkson Show. It has enjoyed incredible support from influencers such as Debra Messing, Chelsea Handler, Maria Shriver, Busy Phillips and Kristen Bell. Pandemic of Love continues to match those in need during this crisis directly with patrons who can help through their grassroots mutual aid platform. This work will continue well beyond the pandemic and Shelly is committed to formalizing mutual aid in communities across the world.

She works to support organizations such as March For Our Lives, Black Lives Matter, indigenous tribes such as the Navajo and Hopi, and other groups committed to social justice and driving real change. In doing so, she’s also seen the toll that activism can take on people. The exhaustion. The let downs. 

Shelly shares her methods of self-care in her book published in 2021 (New World Library) titled Sit Down To Rise Up: How Radical Self-Care Can Change the World which was honored as a Gold winner of the Nautilus Book Award and a finalist for the Fall 2021 Big Idea Book Club.

Her upcoming book, How We Ended Racism: Realizing a New Possibility in One Generationco-authored by Justin Michael Williams, is due out in October of 2023 from Sounds True.



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