Zen priest, writer and musician serving at the Berkeley Zen Center as its Vice Abbot. A longtime peace and human rights activist, Alan blends his buddhist practice with an uncompromising view on civil rights and equality. Alan was a founder of Thing Sangha and executive director of the Buddhist Peace Fellowship, and is a strong voice in the engaged buddhist community.
One of the foremost American nature writers of our time and winner of the National Book Award for Nonfiction for his work Arctic Dreams. His essays and fiction have been published in various magazines such as Outside, National Geographic, Harper’s and The New York Times Magazine. His work often touches upon the issues of intimacy, ethics and identity, as well as humanity’s relationship with the natural world.
A celebrated Bay Area buddhist teacher who grew up in Tibet and at an early age began to practice in the Nyingma tradition of Tibetan Buddhism. Anam Thubten is the founder and spiritual advisor of Dharmata Foundation, teaching widely in the U.S. and occasionally abroad. He is also the author of various articles and books in both the Tibetan and English language
Angel Kyodo Wiliams
A Zen priest, author and teacher. Among her numerous recognitions as a unique voice in the Zen Buddhist community she is the founder of the New Dharma Meditation Center, now the Center for Transformative Change in Berkeley, California. Her focus on issues of social justice has been influential in the Buddhist community and beyond – and is celebrated in major media outlets around the world.
From inner-city Baltimore, Ali Smith is the co-founder of Holistic Life Foundation. The organisation is dedicated to giving young people the tools they need to flourish in a part of the United States that has been largely forgotten and deemed lost. Through meditation, mindfulness and yoga, at-risk and troubled youth elevate themselves from an environment riddled with violence and abuse.
A PhD candidate at the California Institute of Integral Studies. Becca grew up in Big Sur California, a mecca for environmentalists, thinkers and beat poets alike. She draws her inspiration from the natural world, concentrating her art and writing on helping humanity to continue falling in love with our planet.
One of the most celebrated environmentalists of this and last century, McKibben is a driving force in the worldwide environmental movement. Founder of 350.org and writer of The End of Nature, he is — along with his peers — responsible for bringing the subject of climate change to the forefront of popular culture. Bill holds 18 honorary degrees and was the 2013 winner of the Gandhi Prize and Thomas Merton Prize, and was named by Foreign Policy magazine as one of the world’s 100 most important thinkers.
An influential author, academic and cosmologist whose work has greatly impacted the way we see the separation between spirituality and science. His research into cosmology, consciousness, deep time and big history has its roots in Pierre Teilhard de Chardin and Thomas Berry, a lineage he continues. Co-author of Journey of the Universe and the companion film, Brian’s work resonates with anyone who looks for answers to the big questions of our time.
An author and speaker whose eloquence, fierce intelligence and compassion is clearly communicated through his work. In The Ascent of Humanity and Sacred Economics, Charles has cemented his place in the discourse between economics, spirituality, and humanity’s collective future – in part by challenging social and economic norms such as our growth-based economy and rational self-interest.
A professor, writer and Zen teacher whose prolific work makes him an important bastion in the buddhist intellectual discourse. David’s life work of bridging the philosophical gap between eastern and western thought has been a large influence on PLANETARY. As an advisor to the team David shares his keen expertise on buddhist philosophy and its unique perspective on modern life.
An internationally known speaker, poet, writer, and teacher whose keynotes and poetry performances—which address ecology, justice, cosmology, and connectedness—have inspired minds and hearts around the world. He is also a consultant, filmmaker, and founder of Planetize the Movement.
Dr Elizabeth Kapu'uwailani Lindsey
A National Geographic fellow and explorer. The first Polynesian woman to take such a role at the organisation, Elizabeth uses her expertise to explore the oft-underestimated field of cultural intelligence within the indigenous population around the world, highlighting indigenous wisdom, knowledge and science. In addition, Elizabeth has travelled the length and breadth of the planet as a voice for indigenous people through extensive speaking engagements and advisory roles to leaders such as His Holiness the Dalai Lama and the United Nations.
Buddhist teacher and author, Ethan Nichtern is the founder of The Interdependence Project in New York City – a secular Buddhist center dedicated to providing a space for anyone wanting to engage with contemplative practice for personal transformational development. Through his books, teaching and speaking engagements, Ethan brings a fresh perspective on how Buddhist practice and mindfulness can impact our society in positive ways for the future.
His Holiness the 17th Gyalwang Karmapa
The 17th incarnation of the Karmapa. He is the head of the Karma Kagyu school of Tibetan Buddhism, and one of the most revered spiritual teachers of the Tibetan people next to the 14th Dalai Lama. Escaping Tibet at a young age he has lived in exile in India for a great portion of his life. He has often focused his teachings on humanities relationship with the natural world, and speaks candidly about our interconnectedness and the power of mindfulness and nature of mind in PLANETARY.
A scientist, writer and innovator. As president of the Biomimicry Institute, her work has largely focused on biomimicry, the idea that human beings can innovate through emulating nature’s genius for design. A lecturer at the University of Montana, her work often takes her into nature where she teaches stewardship and the protection of wild lands
Grandmother Mona Polacca
A member of the International Council of Thirteen Indigenous Grandmothers, a group of indigenous wisdom keepers with the mission of spreading the indigenous message on the most pressing issues our planet currently faces. A leader in her own right, Grandmother Mona is a champion of the revitalisation and preservation of Native American culture, and a fierce proponent of social justice issues linked to Native Americans’ plight in the United States.
An environmentalist, entrepreneur, journalist, and author. Starting at age 20, he dedicated his life to sustainability and changing the relationship between business and the environment. His practice has included starting and running ecological businesses, writing and teaching about the impact of commerce on living systems, and consulting with governments and corporations on economic development, industrial ecology, and environmental policy.
A physicist, futurist and author whose book The Global Brain was a large inspiration for the conception of PLANETARY. His work bridges the worlds of science and spirituality, providing a compelling narrative for humanity’s continued evolution. His principal interest is the deeper, spiritual significance of the times we are passing through. His work seeks to distill the essence of the world's spiritual traditions and present it in ways relevant to the current times.
Roshi Joan Halifax
The founder and Abbot of the Upaya Institute and Zen Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico. An acclaimed author, speaker and activist, Joan is sought the world over for her teachings. As an anthropologist and Zen teacher, her work has been focused on the research and exploration of the end of life. Her work on death and dying has not only been revealing, but has helped change the way many health care professionals and those with terminal illnesses face their own mortality.
An eco-philosopher and activist whose has been extremely influential on the modern environmental movement, especially her studies in general systems theory and deep ecology. A respected voice in the movements for peace, justice, and ecology, she interweaves her scholarship with five decades of activism. As the root teacher of the Work That Reconnects, she has created a ground-breaking theoretical framework for personal and social change, as well as a powerful workshop methodology for its application.
Lawrence is a complex-systems theorist & consultant, transformational teacher, and proponent of full-spectrum sustainability.TM His life-work bridges ancient wisdom traditions with modern complexity science, and is informed by his own reclamation of his Indigenous heritage. He is a frequent leading presence at conferences on sustainability and transformation. Lead Consulting Producer for PLANETARY, the filmmakers credit him with helping to transform their world-views, resulting in a new trajectory for the film, which they assert made it “truly planetary.”
A member of the Arhuaco Indian tribe of the Sierra Nevada di Madre mountain range in Colombia. He is a traditional Mamo, a medicine man who was chosen by his people to represent them to the outside world. Famously isolationist, the Arhuaco rarely make contact with the outside world. However, Luntana was sent to find out why the world they have known so intimately for generations is changing so dramatically in this time. Mamos spend their first eighteen years living in caves to learn the ways of their traditions and to gain an intense connection with the natural world.
A former NASA astronaut, medical doctor, engineer, educator. Before becoming an astronaut, she was a doctor for the Peace Corps, working in war-torn areas of the world such as Sierra Leone and Liberia. At NASA, she combined her expertise in medicine and engineering and flew aboard the space shuttle Endeavour in 1992 for 127 orbits of the Earth. Since leaving NASA, Mae has combined duties as a professor and speaker and has worked extensively on promoting science education in the United States. She was also the first astronaut to appear in Star Trek: The Next Generation.
Mary Evelyn Tucker
A leading professor and academic at Yale University, is the co-author of Journey of the Universe along with its Emmy Award winning companion film which appeared last year on PBS. Her work has been extremely influential in the field of cosmology and the crossover between religion and science. As a speaker and consultant, she is sought by a wide variety of organisations and governments around the world.
An astronaut, decorated United States Air Force officer, scientist, and humanitarian. Ron wears many hats, but his dedication to our planet is unflinching and focused. He is founder of Fragile Oasis, a charity dedicated to spreading the ideas of the ‘overview effect’ and the ‘orbital perspective’ – ideas that have the capacity to shift the way we see ourselves and our relationship with our planet. As an astronaut, Ron lived aboard the International Space Station for over six months as a Mission Specialist, and also visited the ISS on shuttle mission STS-124.
Professor of Philosophy, Cosmology and Consciousness at the California Institute of Integral Studies. He has published numerous articles on Jung, Hegel, transpersonal psychology, and the new science, and is the author of ‘Coming Home’ among others.
Author, teacher and activist. Subonfu Some is a wisdom keeper of the Dagara Tribe in Burkina Faso, whose responsibility lies in the preservation and dissemination of ancient indigenous culture and knowledge. Subonfu travels all around the world spreading her message of the importance of spirit, community and ritual in our lives.
A celebrated activist who advocates for the indigenous rights of Native American and native people all over the world. He is from the Cheyenne River Lakota (Sioux) Nation of South Dakota, and is the host of First Voices Indigenous Radio on Pacifica Radio. Tiokasin has worked for many years pointing to how the ancient indigenous wisdom of his ancestors offers a unique perspective to the crises faced by our modern industrial civilisation
National Geographic Explorer, ethnographer, writer, photographer, and filmmaker. He holds degrees in anthropology and biology and received his Ph.D. in ethnobotany, all from Harvard University. He has worked on IMAX films, written extensively on various subjects such as ethnobotany, indigenous wisdom traditions, and geology, and has spent significant portions of time living with indigenous tribes in the jungles of South America.
Wes “Scoop” Nisker
Buddhist meditation teacher, author and performer. His books include his national bestseller, Essential Crazy Wisdom and Buddha’s Nature, and his most recent book, Crazy Wisdom Saves the World Again! Wes is also the founder and co-editor of the international Buddhist journal, Inquiring Mind. For nearly 40 years, Mr. Nisker has worked in radio, first as a news anchor and more recently as a commentator, during his career winning multiple awards for excellence in FM radio programming.