Rodney Smith spent eight years in Buddhist monastic settings, both at the Insight Meditation Society (IMS) in Massachusetts and during several years as a Buddhist monk in Asia. He ordained with Mahasi Sayadaw in Burma, then practiced for three years with Ajahn Buddhadassa in Thailand. He disrobed as a monk in 1983 and, after returning to the West, started working in hospice care and teaching Vipassana throughout the United States.
Rodney has devoted much of his energy to serving the dying—both in direct service positions and, until 2000, within hospice management. Since then Rodney has been a full-time dharma teacher conducting meditation classes and retreats and offering spiritual consultations. He serves as a guiding teacher for the Insight Meditation Society and is the founding teacher of Seattle Insight Meditation Society. He is author of the books Lessons from the Dying and Stepping Out of Self-Deception. His most recent book is Awakening: A Paradigm Shift of the Heart. His teaching emphasis is on awakening within the forms of daily lives.