Mountain Lamp Residents
Mountain Lamp currently has two resident temple keepers: Matt and Lisa, who hold our Daily Practice Schedule, coordinate retreats, manage the property and keep things running.
Matt Stuckey began regular zen practice in spring of 2011 when he moved to Honolulu for his Master’s degree in Chinese Medicine and happened to stumble across Honolulu Diamond Sangha (HDS). He ended up spending three and a half of his five years in Honolulu living in residence at HDS’s Palolo Zen Center, one and a half of which was in the Templekeeper position. Missing the mountains, seasons, and being close to family, Matt was happy to find Mountain Lamp and relocate with Lisa to take up the Templekeeper position. Matt plans to continue his practice of Chinese Medicine part-time in nearby Bellingham while continuing to be of service to Mountain Lamp.
Lisa Kieran grew up in a yoga community in the Sierra Nevada foothills. Over time she became curious about Buddhism and about what it was that her aunt and uncle practiced in Hawaii. She met Matt at the Honolulu Diamond Sangha where she came to sit her first sesshin with her uncle Michael summer 2014. In early 2015, she came back to Hawaii to practice as a resident, then Templekeeper. After a fruitful year and a half, she was delighted to accept the position of Templekeeper at Mountain Lamp with Matt. In Mountain Lamp, she's happy to have found a place that feels like home, and one where she can welcome new and experienced students to the richness of this practice.
Templekeepers at Mountain Lamp
The role of templekeeper provides a unique opportunity for the practitioner looking to deepen his or her practice. Templekeepers are invited to Mountain Lamp’s remote natural setting to step outside of the secular world and enter fully into an extended period of intensive practice. They maintain the daily schedule of sitting, walking and work practice alongside teachers and guests. Templekeepers are able to participate in retreats free of charge and have the opportunity to enter into a more intensive relationship with their teacher during their time in residence.
The role of templekeeper is also central to the harmonious functioning of Mountain Lamp. The templekeeper position has emerged in recent years as the programs and upkeep of Mountain Lamp have grown beyond the capacities of the teachers and visiting volunteers. A main focus of the role is to create a welcoming and nourishing environment for visitors and guests to Mountain Lamp. The practice of work includes tasks ranging from gardening and care of the grounds and facilities; to maintaining communications with guests and community members; to retreat and program planning and support; as well as the daily essentials of cooking, cleaning and shopping.
Templekeepers work an average of 25 hours per week and receive a small stipend. They are asked to make a minimum commitment of one year. Those interested in this role are encouraged to visit Mountain Lamp and meet with the teachers, board and current residents to get a sense of the place, the practice, the community, and the role.