Dr. Martin Verhoeven is currently Professor of Buddhist Classics at Dharma Realm Buddhist University, as well as Adjunct Professor of Comparative Religion at the Graduate Theological Union, in Berkeley. He also teaches a weekly translation and meditation series at the Berkeley Buddhist Monastery.
Dr. Verhoeven’s background includes both academic study of history and various philosophical traditions and Buddhist practice. He was a Visiting Scholar at Stanford under a Ford Fellowship in the 1970s. In 1976, he met and trained under the Venerable Master Hsuan Hua, becoming a monk (with the name Heng Chau) in 1977, and took full ordination in 1979.
His study with Master Hua took him to monasteries around the world. It also led him to undertake a two-year, 600-mile bowing pilgrimage up the California coast with Reverend Heng Sure from 1977 to 1979.
After 18 years as a monk, Dr. Verhoeven returned to layperson’s life, but continued to study and teach Buddhism and related topics in the U.S. as well as in Asia, Europe, and Canada. He completed his Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison on the American encounter with Asian religions. His particular areas of interest are the historical teachings of Buddhism, the Euro-American encounter with Asian religions, and the process of religious acculturation.