Reverse Psychology Reversed – Book Excerpt

Though I had been reading Thomas Merton’s books on Zen Buddhism and Carmelite spirituality, and had found them intriguing, I still had not seen the irony in reading books about Catholic mysticism to strengthen my resolve to shave my head and go to a Zen monastery as a monk.  And though Dr. Kim had read  Read more

December 1, 2016 in Uncategorized by Patrick O'Connor

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Crossing a Threshold, Book Excerpt

There was nothing in the air, nothing on my mind or in my heart that morning, that gave me even the slightest impression my life was about to change forever. It was a mid-spring day, May 14th, 1987, and, not having to work until the afternoon, I went for a walk to Main Street, Canmore,  Read more

December 8, 2014 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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“Who Are You?”

In my Zen days in Canmore, Alberta, my teacher Sifu Dr. Kim would look at me sternly, crunching his eyebrows, and say, “Do Chun (my Zen name), you have a big ox.  You must find your ox!”   And I would look back at him earnestly and with all seriousness, nodding my head in the  Read more

August 8, 2014 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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Alberta Floods: We Are Not In Control

Normally, the soft, baby-like, pitter patter of rain eases me into sleep, this night, however, it’s tippity-tapping through the dark hours spells a growing gloom in my heart; the already swollen Bow River rises silently outside my apartment building. By morning, yellow police tape has been strung across the water logged parking lot.  Beyond it,  Read more

June 26, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor

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A Very Special Valentine

In late November, on my way home to London, Ontario from Australia, I was passing through the bus depot in Banff, Alberta.   I mentioned to a ticket agent that I had driven buses for “Brewsters” in the late 80′s.  She called over the supervisor and after a brief chat, I was offered my old  Read more

February 14, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


A Woman In Love

When she stepped on the bus , I thought, “Here is a beautiful woman.”   About 25 years old, she wore a cotton honey coloured winter coat, blue jeans, and calf high winter boots.  Her blonde hair was tied back on her head in a pony tail.  She had a natural girl-next-door beauty. She smiled,  Read more

February 2, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


Road Lessons: Risk Taking, Fear, and Commitment

Sometimes pride works in one’s favour.  I had told so many people that I was cycling to Vancouver, when the time came to leave, and I was having doubts, I couldn’t back out. On the afternoon of September 10th, 2012, just having learned from Travel Alberta that the campgrounds along the southern route I had  Read more

January 6, 2013 in Blog Post by Patrick O'Connor


Road Lesson #3, You Will Meet Angels

Meeting someone even once can change your life.  Here’s a story about one such encounter with a man who changed the way I saw myself – all in 30 minutes. I was cycling the first leg of a 250km trip from Jasper, Alberta to Canmore, Alberta, through the most stunning scenery in the world, the  Read more

January 3, 2013 in Blog Post, Uncategorized by Patrick O'Connor


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