Monk with a Camera: The Life and Journey of Nicholas Vreeland

Monk with a Camera: The Life and Journey of Nicholas Vreeland

I am sitting in the Good Stuff Diner on West 14th Street across from Nicky Vreeland, a maroon-robed Buddhist monk with deep smile lines. A gifted photographer with an exquisite W Magazine-sponsored exhibit at ABC Carpet & Home to benefit the Tibet Center, Vreeland has mentioned that he finds harmony in his pictures. “Did that train you for life as a monk?” I ask. “I think that…

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Healing by Beating People Up

Healing by Beating People Up

I was holed up in my living room watching whatever came on the TV when I saw the man in the space suit attack a woman half his size. She slaughtered him…and a neutron bomb exploded in my brooding, overactive brain. My conscious reason for wanting to take the self-defense course I’d seen on TV was to exorcise anger. I…

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Getting the Life You Want

Getting the Life You Want

“It’s never too late to do something that your heart really desires,” says perpetual student Jennie Richards, who is studying for her MBA in Sustainable Enterprise. “I didn’t get married until I was forty-five. Now I’m back in school at age fifty-two. My life is proof that you don’t have to follow a set template or do what everyone else…

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Floating for Bliss in a Sensory Deprivation Tank

Floating for Bliss in a Sensory Deprivation Tank

I bought it as an expensive, therapeutically perfect gift for a stressed-out friend with back, foot, teeth, and job pain. What better present to give her than one hour of being held, with no obligations or responsibilities to the holder (which, in this case, is 10 inches of skin-temperature water with so much Epsom salts—1,000 pounds—that you are weightless and…

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Shaking Is a Killer Instinct and the Instinct to Live

Shaking Is a Killer Instinct and the Instinct to Live

Shaking is a complicated thing—for me, at times, all-consuming. I’ve had a paralyzing fear of the kind of uncontrolled internal terror and shaking that I’ve experienced with panic attacks. Then there is the full-body vibration, like electricity coursing through me, during bodywork therapy that has not only evoked uncontrolled noises but eventually numbed my hands, making me feel as though…

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