Suzanne Ironbiter

I teach at SUNY Purchase College. My courses are all involved with Owlfeather themes in one way or another. They integrate the study of spiritual traditions with reflective, meditative and artistic practices, and with engagement with issues affecting our lives today. I also lead a summer study abroad program to Dharamsala, India, where we stay in a Tibetan exile community at the Norbulingka Institute for Tibetan Culture and Visual Arts. This website is a way of moving outside the academic context into a more open space, for my own expression and for conversation with others.

My spiritual path has led me from a middlewestern Methodist upbringing (I am from Milwaukee, WI), through doctoral studies focusing on neoPlatonic mystical philosophies and poetry at Columbia University, to the study and practice of yoga and meditation, Sanskrit scriptures and India’s goddess traditions, and finally to Tibetan Vajrayana Buddhism.

I have been blessed with two daughters and four grandchildren, three of whom have a Native American Anishinaabe heritage from their father. They live on Madeline Island, sacred to the Anishinaabe, in Lake Superior, in Wisconsin. Their heritage, its bond with the Great Lakes region, and the sufferings they share with indigenous peoples around the world over the colonization of their spiritual traditions and the desecration of their homelands (which have now become everyone’s homeland)—this is a burden of grief that cries for ways to transform itself into a remediating energy for the present generations and those yet to come. I hope this website may make a small contribution toward opening up that remediating energy, for me and for others.

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