Book event updates

We are now solidly into May, and according to the OUP website, The Making of American Buddhism is going to start shipping any moment now! So I wanted to send out a quick update about some upcoming book-related events.

First and foremost, be sure to bookmark the book’s page on my website where I’ll be updating a list of events and, as available, video or audio or other book-related things.

The “official” book launch will be a week and a half from now on Wednesday May 24 at 1:00 p.m. Pacific Time. This virtual event is being hosted by my employers at the Institute of Buddhist Studies, and I’ll be in conversation with Chenxing Han. I’m thrilled that Chenxing has agreed to this event; as her former academic advisor, I’m biased when I say she’s brilliant, but it is nevertheless true. If you haven’t already become a fan of her work, I encourage you to check out her books. Register for this event at the IBS website here.

Once I get back from the ALC ride, I’ll be doing an in-person second book launch at the Berkeley Buddhist Temple. This event will be on Sunday June 18 at 11:00 immediately following the regular Sunday service. You can see a flyer for the event here and at some point I’m guessing more info will be posted to the temple’s website. I am very excited about this event because the Berkeley Temple is at the heart of my book, so it’s sort of like a homecoming. And I’ll be in conversation with Rev. Dr. David Matsumoto who played a major role in inspiring me to write the book in the first place. Also, there may be, like, physical copies of the book on site for sale!

I’ve also been asked to be a guest speaker for a colleague’s graduate seminar in a couple of weeks. So I’ll use this opportunity to plug my services in this regard. I very much enjoy informal classroom discussions, and am happy to Zoom to you assuming timezones make that practical and possible.

Looking a bit further into the future, I’ll note that a roundtable discussion of the book has been picked up by the Buddhism in the West Unit at the American Academy of Religion. Even though this year’s meeting is being problematically held in Texas and I suspect many folks may not be able to attend, I am nevertheless looking forward to having this opportunity to engage in conversation about the book and its themes with some folks I deeply admire and respect — Jane Iwamura, Michael Masatsugu, and Jeff Wilson.

Lastly, since I’ve already shamelessly offered my services as a guest speaker in your college classroom, let me say that I’d also be happy to be a guest on your podcast if you’ve got one. Or a speaker at your local community, sangha, meditation group, temple, church, book club, sewing circle, drum circle, witch’s coven, or, hell, lunch down at the local pub. Feel free to shoot me an email at scott at

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