Meet the Cranks
Ron Purser, Ph.D. is a professor of management at San Francisco State University where he has taught the last eighteen years in both the MBA and undergraduate business programs. Prior to moving to San Francisco, he taught at Loyola University of Chicago. He received his doctorate in organizational behavior at Case Western Reserve University. He is co-author and co-editor of five books including, The Handbook of Mindfulness: Culture, Context and Social Engagement (Springer, 2016), 24/7: Time and Temporality in the Network Society (Stanford University Press, 2007), and over 60 academic journal articles and book chapters. More recently, Prof. Purser writings have been exploring the challenges and issues of introducing mindfulness into secular contexts, particularly with regards to its encounter with modernity, Western consumer capitalism, and individualism.
In 1981, he began attending classes and retreats at the Tibetan Nyingma Institute in Berkeley. His formal Zen training started at the Cleveland Zen Center in 1985 under Koshin Ogui Sensei, who had been Shunryu Suzuki’s personal assistant in the early 1960’s. After returning to San Francisco in 1997, he continued to study and practice with Zen teachers and Tibetan lamas, is now an ordained Dharma instructor in the Korean Zen Buddhist Taego order. His professional writings and publications currently focus on the application of Buddhist psychology and mindfulness practices to management and organizations. His recent articles include White Privilege and the Mindfulness Movement (with Edwin Ng), Confessions of a Mind-Wandering MBSR Student, Clearing the Muddled Path of Traditional and Contemporary Mindfulness, Revisiting Mindfulness: A Buddhist-Based Conceptualization (with Joe Milillo at Harvard); The Myth of the Present Moment, The Militarization of Mindfulness, Zen and the Art of Organizational Maintenance; Zen and the Creative Management of Dilemmas (with Albert Low); Deconstructing Lack: A Buddhist Perspective on Egocentric Organizations; and A Buddhist-Lacanian Perspective on Lack. His articles Beyond McMindfulness (Huffington Post), Mindfulness’ Truthiness Problem (Salon.com), Corporate Mindfulness is Bulls*t (Salon.com) went viral in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
David Forbes, Ph.D. is an associate professor in the School Counseling program at Brooklyn College and affiliate faculty in the Urban Education doctoral program at the CUNY Graduate Center. He wrote “Occupy Mindfulness” on the need to critically situate mindfulness within current neoliberal contexts, challenge social injustices, and promote full self development. His recent media articles include, “They Want Kids to be Robots” in Salon.com, and “Search Outside Yourself: Google Misses a Lesson in Wisdom 101” in Huffington Post. Forbes wrote Boyz 2 Buddhas: Counseling Urban High School Male Athletes in the Zone (New York: Peter Lang, 2004) on his work with a high school football team. He was a co-recipient of a program fellowship from the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society in 2005. Forbes is a licensed mental health counselor.