Buddhist Geeks-one of my favorite websites for podcasts


The History of Buddhist Geeks

Buddhist Geeks was born out of a conversation between two friends, Vince Horn and Ryan Oelke, at a local coffeeshop in Boulder, CO. At the time, both Vince and Ryan were Religious Studies students at Naropa University, a Buddhist-inspired liberal arts school. Both Ryan and Vince felt there was something missing in the current world of Buddhist media, and so decided to launch a podcast that would have the types of conversations they were most interested in hearing. They were soon joined by Gwen Bell, who although she left around a year later, added a tremendous amount of creative energy to the project.

Launched in the beginning of 2007, the Buddhist Geeks podcast became an instant hit among tech-savvy Buddhists looking for a fresh perspective on being a modern-day Buddhist practitioner. And after a few years, and well over a million downloads of the show, it became clear that Buddhist Geeks was something closer to a movement or community, rather than just a podcast.

In 2010 Buddhist Geeks left the purely digital world with its first in-person event, theBuddhist Geeks Conference. The first event, held in the summer of 2011 in Los Angeles, was received extremely well, and ended up being featured in many publications, including TricycleFast Company, and the LA Times. Since then the conference has become an annual event.

A “For-Benefit” Company

We’ve attempted, to the best of our ability, to have an organizational model that reflects our contemplative values. As a result we operate as a hybrid organization—sometimes known as a for-benefit or fourth-sector organization—an integration between for-profit and non-profit business models.

From the FourthSector.net site:

For-Benefits are a new class of organization. Like non-profits, For-Benefits can organize in pursuit of a wide range of social missions. Like for-profits, For-Benefits can generate a broad range of beneficial products and services that improve quality of life for consumers, create jobs, and contribute to the economy.

For-Benefits represent a new paradigm in organizational design. At all levels, they aim to link two concepts, which are held as a false dichotomy in other models: private interest and public benefit. For-Benefits seek to maximize benefit to all stakeholders, and because of their architecture, they can embody some of the best attributes of other organizational forms. They strive to be transparent, accountable, effective, efficient, democratic, inclusive, open, and cooperative.

It’s our strongly held intuition that true spirituality is not just about ending the false dichotomy of duality, but also in seeing through all types of false dichotomies, including those involving sexuality, power, and modernity. As a result we see our decision to be a for-benefit organization—being both legally structured as an LLC and also seeking to create benefit in the world—as a way to actively see through this particularly pernicious business dichotomy.

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