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Americas Racial Karma Image

Is there a Buddhist approach to acknowledging and transforming America’s enduring racial karma? Larry Ward – senior Dharma teacher ordained by Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh and founder of the Lotus Institute – will share insights from his recently released book America’s Racial Karma: An Invitation to Heal on how to break the nation’s cycles of racial trauma. In conversation with Ito Center Director Duncan Ryuken Williams.

Co-sponsored by the Lotus Institute


Larry Ward (pronouns- he/him) is a senior teacher in Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh’s Plum Village tradition and the author of the book America’s Racial Karma. Dr. Ward brings 25 years of international experience in organizational change and local community renewal to his work as director of the Lotus Institute and as an advisor to the Executive Mind Leadership Institute at the Drucker School of Management. He holds a Ph.D. in Religious Studies with an emphasis on Buddhism and the neuroscience of meditation.

Duncan Ryuken Williams is Professor of Religion/American Studies & Ethnicity at the University of Southern California and Director of the USC Shinso Ito Center for Japanese Religions and Culture. Williams is the author of the LA Times bestseller American Sutra: A Story of Faith and Freedom in the Second World War (Harvard Press, 2019) about Buddhism and the WWII Japanese American internment; The Other Side of Zen: A Social History of Sōto Zen Buddhism in Tokugawa Japan (Princeton University Press, 2005) and editor of seven books including Issei Buddhism in the Americas, American Buddhism, Hapa Japan, and Buddhism and Ecology.

Larry Ward Image