Zoketsu Norman Fischer
Zoketsu Norman Fischer (c. 1946) is a Jewish-American (JuBu) Soto Zen roshi, poet and Buddhist author practicing in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki. He is a Dharma heir of Sojun Mel Weitsman, from whom he received Dharma transmission in 1988. Having served as co-abbot of the San Francisco Zen Center from 1995 to 2000, he has published several works of poetry and books on Buddhism.
Fischer founded the Everyday Zen Foundation in 2000, a network of sanghas with chapters in Canada, the United States and Mexico. He has authored several essays on interreligious dialogues, and to that end has attended gatherings such as the 1996 Gethsemani Encounter held at The Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani in Kentucky (where the Trappist Thomas Merton lived). Fischer has also stayed in touch with his Jewish heritage, occasionally attending services at Ben Shalom synagogue in San Francisco, California and offering instruction in meditation to interested parties there. In addition, he has also served as mentor to teenage boys, all of which is chronicled in his book "Taking Our Places: The Buddhist Path to Truly Growing Up." Fischer also serves on the Board of Directors for the Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco, California.