About the Webmaster, or, a life story that you don't really care too much about.
Howdy, Tashi Delek, and welcome to my little blurb about something that is of little importance in the grand scheme of netsurfing, which is my ego. I was born in 1974 in Arlington, Texas, and was apparently in a hurry to get out of the womb and see the world. My mother was in labor for less than 15 minutes. Personally, I think that's pretty cool. Had my grandparents, whom my mother was staying with on her vacation, lived further than a couple of blocks away from the hospital, I would have most likely greeted the world from the backseat of my grandfather's car. Soon after, I was whisked away to Laramie, Wyoming, where my father was stationed. He was an officer in the Air Force. I don't really remember anything about Wyoming, so enough about that. Next we moved to Omaha, Nebraska. Omaha is pretty freakin' boring, even for a little kid with a big imagination. So after 5 years of typical midwestern boredom, my Pop got his overseas duty orders. Now this was pretty cool, because we got to live in Cambridgeshire, England for 3 years. That's really where all the fun of being a Global Nomad started, getting to tour around europe during the summers with my family in our caravan, and attending British schools rather than the American school on base. My favorite places in Europe were Munich and Garmisch in Southern Germany, Bern in Switzerland, Florence and Pisa in Italy, and Edinburgh, Scotland. After living in Europe, I found myself in a small, homogenous and very backwards redneck town in Southeastern Virginia. One of those towns where people like to use the "n" word alot. Quite a culture shock from just having experienced a whirlwind of different cultures. After 5 years in this town, my father's 20 years of service was over and it was time to move "home" to Texas. I guess I've always considered Texas "home", although I haven't lived there for most of my life and don't live there now. When people ask me where I'm from, I usually reply with an "Ummmmm, Texas, but really, all over the place." Once every 3 years or so, I get the notion to pick up and live in a new place. So far, I've lived in Laramie,WY; Omaha, NE; Cambridge, UK; Poquoson, VA; Arlington, TX; San Marcos, TX; San Diego, CA; Fort Worth, TX; Denton, TX; and I currently reside in Nashville, TN. Every now and then someone will ask me how I got into Buddhism. That's kind of a wierd story. I was hanging out with a painter friend of mine in Fort Worth, and we were discussing some lucid dreams that we'd been having lately over a game of 5 card draw and a bottle of cheap whiskey. One of my descriptions led him to dig around for a small paperback book that one of his models had left in his studio a few nights prior. I took the book home, and when I started reading it, it seemed like I had a sense of what would take place in the words on paper before I got to them. Not like a sense of deja vu, but more like premonitions. The book was Francesca Fremantle's and Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche's translation of the Bardo Thodol, called the Great Book of Natural Liberation, but more often called by it's misonomer "The Tibetan Book of the Dead". From that point, I started reading as much as I could about buddhism, but particularly books that Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche or His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama had written. Understanding more and more of the Dharma started to immediately break down preconceptions that I previously had about religion, that it was all theologically based mythology, or vice versa. The backdrop was burning down to expose luminous space that had always been behind it. I remained an independent practitioner until June of 1998, when I finally found some teachers that "fit right", Khenchen Palden Sherab Rinpoche and his younger brother, Khenpo Tsewang Dongyal Rinpoche. I took formal refuge vows with them on June 14th, 1998, at Padma Gochen Ling in Monterrey, TN, and was given the name Padma Rabzang, which means "Lotus of High Goodness". Refuge names are descriptions to apsire to, rather than observations that Lamas make of the recipients. So now you know a little about me! If you stuck until the end of this self-centered rambling, you have lots of patience!