Dr. Ed Bastian, Founder

Brief Resume

Ed’s doctorate is in Buddhist Studies and Western Philosophy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison under the guidance of Geshe Lhundup Sopa. He studied for nearly a decade with Buddhist Monks in monasteries in the U.S., India and the Himalayas. As a Fulbright Scholar, he studied Indian philosophy at Banares Hindu University, Sarnath and Sera Monastery and translated Buddhist scriptures from Tibetan and Sanskrit sources.

Ed is the founding president of the Spiritual Paths Foundation that provides InterSpiritual programs, books, websites and websites for the study of meditation and the application of contemplative values and insights in the world.  These programs and resources enable people to “lead from within” by developing a spiritual foundation to guide their work for the common good.  Ed’s teaching includes InterSpiritual Meditation, the Mandala Process, Mindfulness Meditation, Buddhism, Spirit & Nature and End-of-Life.

At the Smithsonian Institution, Bastian served as Director of programs on BioDiversity and Intellectual History, where he taught courses and moderated programs on Buddhism, world religion and Tibetan human rights. He co-produced the Smithsonian’s first interactive multimedia production called “Life Story” with Lucas Film and Apple Computer.  He has lectured, presented scholarly papers and his films in the U.S., England, Japan and India. Bastian is an award-winning executive producer of television programs on Asian religion for the BBC, PBS, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is the author of the award winning “Living Fully Dying Well,” as well as “Mandala, Creating Your Spiritual Path,” and “InterSpiritual Meditation, A Seven-Step Process from the Worlds Spiritual Traditions.”

His online courses partners include the Charter for Compassion, Spiritual Directors International and the Spiritual Paths Foundation. He leads programs and retreats in Santa Barbara, Aspen and retreat centers throughout North America.  He is on the faculty of Antioch University where he teaches Buddhism and Mindfulness and he has taught with the Chaplaincy Institute and One Spirit University.

Ed was the founding president of Aspen Interactive Media that partnered with Sun Microsystems in 1994 to develop www.aspen.com, one of the first community websites in the world.  His company also developed and managed a number of community websites in Colorado.   He sold this company in 1999 to commit his time and resources to the Spiritual Paths Foundation.

Ed has been a Global Trustee for the United Religions Initiative and President of the Interfaith Initiative of Santa Barbara.  His is a board member for Showers of Blessing that serves Santa Barbara’s houseless population.  He served as Executive Director of the Aspen Educational Research Foundation, a Board Director of the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies and the Aspen Institute’s Community Advisory Council.

Audio Interview with Matt Whitney of Spiritual Directors International