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A Sense of Something Greater

Zen and the Search for Balance in Silicon Valley

A detailed investigation into the unlikely but growing connection between Zen and Silicon Valley, from a former employee of IBM and the abbot of Kannon Do Zen center.






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As the technology industry has continued to reach new heights, technology workers have begun to look for something more—a sense of fulfillment and purpose beyond their long days at their desks—and many have found it in Zen practice.

Les Kaye brings the full weight of his experience as a long time employee of IBM and the abbot of Kannon Do Zen Center to bear in this balanced, nuanced investigation into the relationship between Silicon Valley—and the wealth and privilege that the region enjoys—and Zen practice, which first made its mark in California in the 1960s and ’70s.

A Sense of Something Greater shares interviews with current technology company employees and Zen practitioners, conducted by Teresa Bouza, are interspersed throughout the book, along with accessible teachings and Zen analysis from Kaye.

Additional information

Additional information

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Paperback, eBook



Trim Size

5.5" x 8.5"

ISBN 9781946764218
ISBN 9781946764225

"The stories gently illuminate difficulties that many of us commonly face in our work or family lives, and the sense of hope, healing and balance that Zen practice helped to provide."

Lini Wollenberg

"This book really addresses our time and place, especially for those of us in Silicon Valley, yet I imagine that decades from now it will still feel current and relevant to people."

Sharlene Gee

"Refreshing and touching stories--don't skip this one!... If you are looking for a "how to meditate book", this is not for you, but if you are looking to answer "why should I meditate?" start with this one!"


"[This book] fills a great need in Silicon Valley because nowhere else in the world do the denizens need spiritual practice more than here."

Merrill Snell
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About Les Kaye

Les Kaye is abbot of Kannon Do, a Zen center in Silicon Valley. For more than 30 years, he also worked at IBM in technical and administrative positions. He was ordained as a Zen monk by Shunryu Suzuki in 1971, and he was appointed spiritual leader of Kannon Do in... Read More

See everything from Les Kaye

About Teresa Bouza

Teresa Bouza is a journalist with extensive experience in Europe and the United States, most recently covering technology and innovation in Silicon Valley. She has worked for The Wall Street Journal as well as Spain’s global news agency EFE and the Spanish business daily Cinco Dias. Bouza has a master’s... Read More

See everything from Teresa Bouza

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What is Mindfulness

Thich Nhat Hanh January 15, 2020

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