We are happy to welcome William Edelglass as our new Director of Studies. William has been teaching at BCBS since 2015, including weekend courses on Buddhist poetry and the bodhisattva path, as well as the year-long Nalanda program. William was also part of the initial Dharma and art symposium and has taught for CDL reunions. He is inspired by the BCBS model of integrating study and practice. William will join us full-time in July when Mu Soeng will be retiring from his long-serving role as our Resident Scholar.
William’s own background in Buddhist study and practice is broad. He has practiced in Zen, Theravāda, and Tibetan lineages, and his own teaching and scholarship address a variety of Buddhist traditions. He appreciates the BCBS culture of inviting a multiplicity of teachers, teachings, and experiences to respond to the diverse needs of contemporary practitioners and shares its pluralistic, inquiring, and experiential approach to the dharma.
William has been a teacher in a variety of settings, including a federal prison in New York, a small school in Nepal, dharma centers, and for many years as a wilderness guide at Outward Bound. In the early 2000’s he taught Western philosophy to Tibetan monks at the Institute of Buddhist Dialectics, Dharamsala, India, and Buddhist philosophy to American college students on a Tibetan studies program. Currently, William is a tenured Professor of Philosophy and Environmental Studies at Marlboro College. In addition to courses on diverse areas of Buddhist philosophy, he has taught courses that address Socially Engaged Buddhism; Buddhist ethics and race, class, and gender; Buddhist art—including visual art, literature, and film; Buddhist pilgrimage practice; Buddhism and ecology; Buddhist modernism; and Buddhist meditation. In addition, his research and teaching also engages other traditions and contemporary concerns, including: philosophy of race; happiness and well-being; postcolonial theory; environmental humanities; climate change; philosophy of art and aesthetics; language; pedagogy; and how the humanities can learn from and offer alternatives to the cognitive and behavioral sciences.
William and his wife, Kirstin, live on an off-the-grid homestead in southern Vermont with their four-year old twin daughters, Jasmine and Sarah.
If you get a chance, please stop by BCBS to meet William this summer; he looks forward to building relationships with everyone in the larger BCBS community.
To learn more about William and his work, you can visit his faculty page at Marlboro, read this interview on his scholarship with 3AM Magazine, or listen to an interview with William on the Imperfect Buddha podcast.