born in the Netherlands, is the co-founder of Mindfulness-Based Compassionate Living (MBCL), an 8-week program for compassion training. He is also a teacher of MBSR and MBCT and serves as a faculty member in several MBSR & MBCT teacher training programs. In addition to being on the faculty of the IMA he teaches at the Institute for Mindfulness in Rolde, Netherlands and in the postgraduate mindfulness programme at the University College Artevelde in Gent, Belgium. He began practicing insight meditation in 1979. He ordained as a Buddhist monk for six years, practicing Vipassana meditation and studying Buddhist psychology in meditation centers and monasteries in Thailand and Burma. In 1988 he returned to the Netherlands, where he has been facilitating meditation activities ever since. He leads Vipassana retreats and mindfulness and compassion retreats for professionals. In his earlier years, he trained and worked in the field of psychiatric nursing. He is the co-author (with Erik van den Brink) of Mindfulness-Based Compassionate Living (Routledge, Jan. 2015) and author of Liberating Insight (Silkworm Books, 2004), Buddhist Meditation as Stress Management (Silkworm Books, 2007), and The Web of Buddhist Wisdom (Silkworm Books, 2014).