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"Live every day like it’s your last. "

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Bernie Glassman

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In 1982, Bernie Glassman, a Zen Buddhist founded Greyston Bakery in Riverdale, New York. It is a for-profit company and gives all its profits to the Greyston Foundation. The Greyston Foundation then gives the money to the people in the Riverdale community who need it. It has been used of low-income housing, day care centers, and medical treatments.

The Greyston bakery brownies are used in Ben & Jerry’s chocolate fudge brownie ice cream. In 2012, the company became the first registered Benefit Corporation in New York. In 1996, Bernie Glassman and his wife, Sensei Jishu Holmes formed the Zen Peacemaker Order. This group seeks to bear witness to happiness and pain, and to heal all.

Companies and Investments

Greyston Bakery (Founder), Greyston Foundation (Founder), Zen Peacemaker Order (Co-Founder)

Lessons Learned

With my company, and all my endeavors I seek peace. I look for lessons, which can lead me to help others and commence healing. My goals are to change lives and to inspire people. My absolute greatest lesson is to give back to people and to the community. By giving, you are taking the first step to a world filled with peace.

Inspiring Quotes

Hopes interesting, isnt it? I cant turn hope off, its hopeless.

Jeff Bridges

A famous Japanese Zen master, Hakuun Yasutani Roshi, said that unless you can explain Zen in words that a fisherman will comprehend, you don’t know what you’re talking about. Some fifty years ago a UCLA professor told me the same thing about applied mathematics. We like to hide from the truth behind foreign-sounding words or mathematical lingo. There’s a saying: The truth is always encountered but rarely perceived. If we don’t perceive it, we can’t help ourselves and we can’t much help anyone else.

Jeff Bridges

Bernie Glassman's Quotes

People get stuck a lot because theyre afraid to act; in the worst case,...we get so attached to some end result that we cant function. We need help just to move on, only life doesnt wait.

Bernie Glassman

Let me give you a wonderful Zen practice. Wake up in the morning...look in the mirror, and laugh at yourself.

Bernie Glassman

The pursuit of enlightenment is for the purpose of the world, not merely for the purpose of the individual. Practices for enlightenment must lead to action in the world.

Bernie Glassman

The more you learn, the more you know that youre not so hot.

Bernie Glassman

Beautiful surroundings inspire people to live more fully and to appreciate the preciousness of our world and each other. The beauty of art and nature also reminds us of the inner harmony and splendor that is every human beings birthright. The Japanese understand this very well. Every house or noodle shop, no matter how humble, contains a tokonomo — a niche to hang a painted scroll and exhibit a small flower arrangement. Its a small thing, but it uplifts the spirit and adds dignity and grace to everyday life.

Bernie Glassman

Influential Books

Thich Nhat Hanh - Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

Jeff Bridges - The Dude and the Zen Master

Mentors

References


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