Best Self Magazine

Interview: Lodro Rinzler | A Mindful Life

Loro Rinzler for Best Self Magazine, photograph by Bill Miles

Lodro Rinzler

A Mindful Life

Interview by Kristen Noel, May 26, 2016, New York City

Photographs by Bill Miles

Meditation is a simple practice, but it has the power to transform the world.

~ Lodro Rinzler


Watch the full interview video:

Kristen:           Lodro Rinzler — thank you for welcoming us into what I am sure you are now referring to as your ‘home away from home’ — MNDFL, this gorgeous new drop-in meditation studio where you serve as Chief Spiritual Officer.

Lodro:              Yes. Thanks for coming.

Kristen:           I’m really excited about this project – but I have to say, I am totally distracted at the moment by this incredible beauty behind us [pointing to the live green wall in the backdrop].

Lodro:              Yes, we’re in the private room at MNDFL, a space that we consider to be a sanctuary. It’s often so hard to find quiet spaces and green spaces in the city. We really think this is the quietest room in all of New York City. Having this greenery is a really important element to us.

Kristen:           I arrived here early today and had the opportunity of experiencing, the calm between these beautiful walls — this literally is the quietest space I’ve ever been in NYC. And everyone seems so happy here. Even the delivery people, who can be some of the crabbiest people around, were all smiles. Something is contagious here.

Lodro:              It’s something really beautiful. I think we have created a space where when you walk in you can take a deep exhale. We hold our bodies so tightly all the time. In here, it’s as if your body says – Hey, I get to relax for a second.

Kristen:           You walk in and it’s shoes off, phones off, mind off.

Lodro:              It’s really about disconnection and connection: connecting with another human being and disconnecting from distractions.

Kristen:           OK, but before we delve too much further here — indulge me and allow me to gush over your bio and background so I make sure that our audience knows who this great guy with the orange bow tie and live wall really is.

Lodro:              [laughing] Sure.

Lodro Rinzler for Best Self Magazine, photograph by Bill Miles

Kristen:           You are a Buddhist practitioner and meditation teacher and author of five books. Fresh out of college, you were recruited to be the Executive Director of the Boston Shambhala Center, went on to serve as the Head of Development for Shambhala internationally, founded the Institute for Compassionate Leadership, The Daily Dharma Gathering and now MNDFL. You have been meditating since you were six-years-old and you spent a month before college living in a monastery. I read that you received two heirlooms from your parents before leaving for Wesleyan University: a mala and a flask, both of which you say you put to good use over the course of the next four years.

I think that is a pretty good segue into why your voice is fresh, profound, relatable and what I like to call a take-it-to-the-street-Zen-reality, sensibility. Translation: You apply your depth of wisdom and practice to every day life — bringing it from the cushion to the world.

              Thank you for that. That is very kind of you to say. You know, while I was listening to you read that, I was thinking how there are a lot of stories of people who have some sort of life event and then they discover a spiritual practice. I’m also going to go out to parties with friends, and I’m interested in dating, and all of these other things were making themselves known to me. It was sort of like a story in reverse in that way.

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