Norman Fischer

Norman Fischer is a Zen Buddhist priest. A former abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center, he is the founder and teacher for the Everyday Zen Foundation, a network of communities and projects. He is also co-founder, with the late Rabbi Alan Lew, of Makor Or, a Jewish meditation center in San Francisco. A graduate of the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop, Fischer began publishing poetry in the late 1970s as part of a Bay Area group of experimental writers. Recent books of poetry include Conflict (Chax 2012) and The Strugglers (Singing Horse 2013); recent prose works include Training in Compassion: Zen Teachings on the Practice of Lojong (Shambhala 2013) and Sailing Home: Using the Wisdom of Homer’s Odyssey to Navigate Life’s Perils and Pitfalls (Simon and Schuster 2008). For more information, see and

Photograph by Christine Alicino