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Meeting Lucille

One might say I met Lucille two times. The first was in 1965 at the University of Michigan. I was a PhD graduate student in psychology, and Lucille was on the staff of the Institute for Social Research. We met when I took a class in Planned Change, and she was one of the instructors. For six years, my interactions with Lucille were simply working together on many research grants and projects.

In September 1971, I had my “second” meeting, where I met her as a spiritual meditation teacher. At a week-long workshop in which Lucille and I were trainers, she indicated one evening that she needed to talk with me. Contrary to what I had expected, she asked if I would be interested in a meditation group that she was starting, which would meet once a week. And that was the beginning of the next 13 years with her as a spiritual teacher and friend.

The Ann Arbor group began ongoing meditation throughout that year. Even though Lucille left Ann Arbor for Portland Oregon in the summer of 1972, the Ann Arbor group still expanded when Lucille returned to give seminars. Along with several of the Ann Arbor students, Lucille and I attended the second Human Development Program offered by Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche in 1974.

When Tarthang Tulku Rinpoche asked Lucille to initiate two Buddhist meditation centers in Colorado, she asked me to be among the five incorporators. Even though my life in Detroit at the time was completely fulfilling, the decision to move to Colorado seemed inevitable, as though it had already been made at a deeper level than I understood. I quit my university position, resigned from consulting and city commissions, and moved to Colorado in the summer of 1976.

For the next eight years, I helped with and participated in the Buddhist organizations led by Lucille, taught several courses at the center, and was trained by her in the science of impression.

After her death, I continued my Buddhist practice and participation with Udiyan Maitreya Kosha, the NyingmaTibetan Buddhist organization named by His Holiness Dudjom Rinpoche for which Lucille had been the spiritual teacher. Recently I was appointed a Lama by His Holiness Shenphen Dawa Rinpoche and given the name Lama Pema Chokyi.

Other Background

  • Organizational Development and Diversity Consultant with organizations such as Chrysler, AT&T, Lucent, Dupont, Hewlett Packard, and Episcopal Church in Detroit
  • Taught at Wayne State University College of Business, Colorado Women's College, University of Colorado Denver, and Metropolitan State College of Denver