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Department of Philosophy & Religious Studies
L & L Building Room 337
In line with my Midwestern roots, I earned a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire with a double major in Comparative Religion and History. I then went on to Northwestern University where I received an M.A. in Medieval Christianity and a Ph.D. in Chinese Buddhist studies. Since arriving at Central Washington University in 2000, I have had the opportunity to work with numerous students in Religious Studies and Philosophy who have both challenged and inspired me. As a result of their enthusiasm and intellectual curiosity, I have been fortunate enough to offer courses in Daoism, Buddhism, and special topics in areas such as comparative monasticism, comparative apocalypticism, and the roots of religious violence and its nonviolent alternatives.
Through CWU's Office of International Studies, I have also co-directed a variety of short-term study-abroad programs, including trips to China's sacred Buddhist mountain Emeishan, and sites in Cambodia (Angkor Wat) and Vietnam. I have also been Director of Asian Studies for most of the past 15 years.
My teaching and research interests primarily lie in Chinese religions and philosophy. One recent project resulted in the publication of Riding the Wind with Liezi: New Perspectives on the Daoist Classic (SUNY Press) co-edited with Ronnie Littlejohn (Belmont University). Two new articles are appearing in 2017: “Residing in De: Contenment, Home and Finding One's Place in the Liezi and Zhuangzi” will be published in the journal International Communication of Chinese Culture and “On the Threshold of the Dao: Liminality and the Lives of Daoist Women” is being translated into Chinese and slated for publication in the Academic Journal of Shangqiu Normal University in 2017. Ongoing projects include an analysis of the Daoist conception of human rights and the self as portrayed in the Taiping jing, and the role of generational guilt and sin in medieval Daoism and early Judaism.
In 2007 I was honored to receive the Distinguished Professor of Service from Central Washington University, and the College of Arts & Humanities Outstanding Faculty Service Award in 2016. Finally, I have had the good fortune to serve as President of the Pacific Northwest Region of the American Academy of Religion and Society of Biblical Literature from 2006-2007, Chair of the CWU Faculty Senate from 2006-2007, and am concluding a four year term as the President of the National Association of Regional Centers for Asian Studies.
Asian Religion and Philosophy, Daoism, Buddhist Philosophy, World Religions
Congratulations to Dr. Matthew Altman for his recent publication: A Theory of Legal Punishment:FEB 22: Philosophy Of Punishment
2.22.22 | 6PM | SURC Theatre Come join us for a philosophical and politiAPR 5: The Good Life Project
The Good Life Project Happiness and The Good Life Tue, April 5, 2022 | 6:00 - 7: