This week on the Wisdom Podcast we meet Gerry Stribling, the author of Buddhism for Dudes. Gerry shares how he got into Buddhism when he was volunteering Sri Lanka. He first worked at a nonprofit that protected elephants and soon came across insight meditation. He reflects on how Buddhism helps people become tough and shares what about Buddhism appealed to him, a “tough-guy” ex-military man. He talks about his work with veterans and addicts. He talks about the theme of sacrifice in Buddhism and the military. We also hear Gerry’s thoughts on what a Buddhist’s response to violence might look like. Gerry shares his personal experiences of sitting with dying World War II veterans, and how he sees them relating to death. Gerry and host Daniel Aitken also discuss different ways to respond to ideological violence such as ISIS and the November 2015 attack in Paris. Finally, Gerry shares the incredible international response he’s received to his book Buddhism for Dudes, and what his writing schedule looks like.
In Buddhism for Dudes, Gerry “Strib” Stribling, former Marine and all-around good guy, answers questions on life and living with a healthy dose of Buddhist wisdom for the regular guy. Strib takes a good look at who the Buddha was, meditation, karma, and more. With good humor and without sentimentalism (plus a sprinkling of hilarious cartoons), he explains these down-to-earth insights in everyday language. Showing how Buddhism boldly approaches life’s problems head on, unflinching and alert—like a soldier in a forward listening post in the dark of night—Strib emphasizes the Buddhist call to moral action for the good of oneself and others.
Gerry Stribling was born into a military family and served in the Marine Corps in the 1960s and early 1970s. Since 1991 he has worked as a case manager for disabled, impoverished, homeless and criminal populations. Stribling and his wife make their home in Louisville, Kentucky.