Eugene Bush, D.D., has practiced meditation since 1972 and was priest ordained by Katherine Thanas in 2005. He is a bilingual teacher with 34 years of experience in the public school system grades pre-K through University. Currently he is a teacher in an alternative high school in Santa Cruz.
As Administrator of Santa Cruz Zen Center, Eugene Bush is a part of a leadership team. Along with the Abbot Katherine Thanas, the head teacher Kokyo Henkel and the leader of the Global Sangha social action group Patrick Teverbaugh, Gene is available to support the community in practice. In this capacity he gives lectures, offers time for practice discussion, officiates in ceremonies and supports the sewing of robes for students taking the precepts. Additionally, he looks after the property, buildings and garden, working with many volunteers to keep SCZC safe and attractive. He tracks the calendar and functions as a liaison from the leadership group to the Board of Trustees. If this role were compared to a position on a team sport, it would be as a soccer midfielder.
Gene occasionally offers dharma teachings at Monterey Bay Zen Center and SFZC Queer Dharma. He and his wife, Cathy Toldi, continue to cultivate their 28 year relationship, their home and their garden.
Abstract from a forthcoming article for the Jung journal:
This provocative article advocates for the civil right to same sex marriage from a unique point of view. Queer culture has always been in the forefront of the deep examination of the interrelationships among gender, culture and identity. In this spirit, the author, a Buddhist priest, evokes the foundation of Zen practice -- questioning the solidity of all our fundamental assumptions, including our notions about relationships. He sees the traditional views of sexual orientation, gender and marriage as limited and limiting. Expanding the definition of marriage is seen as the only real option in Western society.