Dean Sluyter has taught natural meditation since 1970 and is the author of three books, the most recent being Cinema Nirvana: Enlightenment Lessons from the Movies. He has given talks and led workshops throughout the U.S. at such venues as the Chautauqua Institution, New York Open Center, and Barre Center for Buddhist Studies, and has spoken at colleges including Columbia, Rutgers, Wesleyan, and the University of Pennsylvania. Dean has appeared in various media, including Oprah & Friends Radio and National Public Radio; his work has been featured in The New York Times, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly, which called his writing "joyously entertaining." A leading innovator in the use of meditative approaches in education, Dean taught from 1977 to 2010 at The Pingry School, where he developed the Literature of Enlightenment program, and worked beginning in 2005 as a volunteer Buddhist chaplain at Northern State Prison in Newark, NJ.
Born into a family of musicians and political activists, Dean grew up in New York and Los Angeles. He dropped out of college to hitchhike around the country and embark on a path of spiritual investigation, eventually returning to earn a B.A. in English and an M.A. in interdisciplinary education. He was married for twenty-five years to the late artist and dharma teacher Maggy Sluyter and has two grown children. In 2010 he moved to California and married filmmaker Yaffa Lerea.
Dean (a.k.a. Pritam) has trained and practiced with eminent teachers in various devotional and meditative traditions, with his main focus on the nondual approaches of Advaita, Buddhism, and Bhakti Yoga. He has completed numerous retreats in the U.S. and abroad and has made pilgrimages to India, Tibet, and Nepal. Dean now works as an audiobook narrator and producer and happily rides his Vespa through the streets of Santa Monica.
TALKS AND WORKSHOPS
Dean's talks and workshops are noted for their clarity, warmth, and humor. Topics include:
- Just Being: The Way of Natural Meditation and Self-Inquiry
- Breaking Out: Freedom from the "I"
- Shower the People You Love with Love
- Free Your Voice and Your Mind Will Follow
- Cinema Nirvana: Enlightenment Lessons from the Movies
- The Zen Commandments: Ten Suggestions for a Life of Inner Freedom
- Shakespeare's Cosmic Vision
- The Dude Abides: Enlightenment Teachings of The Big Lebowski
- A Perfect Day for Nirvanafish: J.D. Salinger and the Spiritual Quest
- Meditation in the Classroom
. . . and other topics as the occasion requires.
Dean loves traveling and teaching. If you represent a school, a corporation, an organization, or a group of individuals who would be interested in attending a workshop, contact him about organizing one in your area. He is also happy to chat with book clubs and discussion groups anywhere in the world via Skype video calls.
VOICE WORK Information on Dean's audiobook narrating and producing services here.
PRISON WORK Information on volunteering to teach dharma in prisons: Liberation Prison Project
UNIVERSE Beautiful photos of our amazing universe: Astronomy Picture of the Day
MOOJI Highly, highly recommended — self-inquiry with the brilliant Advaita master Mooji: Mooji.org
"There is only Awareness, no 'one' being aware."