Hans W. Gruenig, Ph.D., is a philosophy professor at Tulane University. His research focuses on Asian Philosophy (especially Buddhism), 20th Century Continental Philosophy, and interdisciplinary approaches to happiness and human flourishing. He has completed an M.A. in Philosophy and Religion at the California Institute of Integral Studies and a Ph.D. in Philosophy at Tulane University. He teaches courses on a variety of topics including Buddhism, Zen, Asian Philosophy, Happiness and Human Flourishing, and Japanese Film and Philosophy.
Hans W. Gruenig, Ph.D.
Department of Philosophy /
Asian Studies Program
This site is mainly an illustrated curriculum vitae,
offering information on Hans Gruenig's academic training,
courses taught, research, awards, and related activities.
For information on Dr. Gruenig's
wellness coaching, courses, and retreats, please visit here.
Tulane University Courses
Happiness & Human Flourishing (TIDES) *
||Philosophies of the Self
||Happiness & Human Flourishing
||Intro to Asian Philosophy
||Developments in Buddhism *
||Honors Thesis Advising
Graduate Level Independent Study
||Happiness & Human Flourishing Seminar
Graduate Level Course
Graduate Level Course
* Service Learning Courses developed for these courses
in conjunction with Tulane's Center for Public Service
UNO-Japan University Courses
Taught at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan
Journey to the Heart of Zen
||The Tao of Happiness
||Silver Screen & Rising Sun
In iconic Jackson Square with Happiness and Human Flourishing students
during a field trip to the historic French Quarter of New Orleans.
Community Service & Service Learning
Professor Gruenig pioneered the first service learning courses in Tulane's Department of Philosophy and seeks to enhance student learning and personal growth and to benefit suffering and underserved populations by partnering with Tulane's Center for Public Service to create service learning curricula for several courses. His Buddhism course was also designated by the Dean of the Tulane School of Social Work as a gateway preparation course for Tulane's Compassion in Action program, which sends students to Dharmsala, India to do volunteer work with Tibetan Refugees.
Dr. Gruenig has partnered with the Center for Public Service to send student volunteers to many organizations, including:
Compassion in Action
Volunteer work with Tibetan refugees in India
For The Children
Volunteer work tutoring students from low performing public schools
Volunteer work tutoring students who will be
in the first generation of their families to attend college
|American Cancer Society / Taylor Hope Lodge
Volunteer work with cancer patients & administrative assistance
Volunteer work visiting with the elderly in a retirement home
|Heart of Hospice
Volunteer work with people at the end stage of life
Dr. Gruenig has also organized and/or participated in many fundraising events, directing charitable funding and/or volunteers to the following organizations:
Doctors Without Borders
Urgent medical care to victims of war and disaster around the world
|American Red Cross
Disaster relief at home and abroad
Humanitarian Medical Aid
|Habitat for Humanity
Disaster & poverty response - building and repairing homes
|American Himalayan Foundation
Education, Health Care, & Cultural Preservation in Tibet and Nepal
Animal Rescue New Orleans
Rescuing and caring for neglected and hurt animals
|Unity of Greater New Orleans
Providing housing and services to the homeless
|Louisiana Himalaya Association
Social work with Tibetan refugees in India and Nepal
|New Orleans Food & Farm Network
Helping underserved populations benefit from urban agriculture
Activities & News
2017-2019 - Summer Teaching at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan
In 2017, 2018, and 2019, Dr. Gruenig has been engaged in developing and teaching university courses such as Journey to the Heart of Zen, The Tao of Happiness, and Japanese Film & Philosophy for the UNO-Japan summer study abroad program at Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan. These courses include academic study, experiential learning, meditation instruction, and field trips to Zen Buddhist temples and other locations in Kyoto, Japan.
2018 - Keynote Presentation at the 48th Annual Conference of
Dr. Gruenig gave a Keynote Presentation on Gebser and Buddhism: Nonduality and Aperspectivity in Theory and Practice at the 48th Annual Conference of the International Jean Gebser Society at Naropa University in Boulder, Colorado.
"Hans Gruenig played an important role in tailoring the theme of this year's International Jean Gebser Society Converence: Jean Gebser and Asia: Theory, Practice, Engagement. As keynote speaker he presented important research on the intersections of nondualism and integral philosophy and, in addition, situated his research within the context of important historical details of the development of Gebser's thought on Eastern consciouseness. As a whole, his presence has proven invigorating to Gebser scholarship and to the development of the Gebser Society."
Aaron Cheak, PhD
Editor-in-Chief, Rubedo Press
President, International Jean Gebser Society, 2013-2015
2017 - Invited Talk at Doshisha University's Center for Global Education
"Zen and the West"
Center for Global Education
2016 - Advanced Pali Studies at Oxford University
The Pali language, a close relative of Sanskrit, was used to preserve the oldest teachings of Buddhism. Dr. Gruenig's exposure to Pali began in graduate school at the California Institute of Integral Studies and subsequently at Harvard University. More recently he sought to deepen his familiarity with Pali by attending a 72 hour live videoconferenced Pali course as well as an on-site Advanced Pali Course at Oxford University with Dr. Richard Gombrich. Sabbe satta bhavantu sukhitatta.
Ongoing - Workshops, Courses, and Retreats in the USA and Abroad
For the past 20 years Dr. Gruenig has taught a spectrum of wellness practices (including meditation, mindful movement, Buddhist philosophy, positive psychology, and practices for healthier relationships) via coaching, workshops, courses, and retreats locally, nationally, and abroad. He has led retreats for the Flowering Lotus Meditation and Retreat Center -- including residential meditation retreats in Magnolia, MS and non-residential retreats in New Orleans. He has taught at retreats at the Samskara Retreat Center in Ibiza, Spain and at the Art of Living Retreat Center in Boone, NC. He has also taught courses on meditation, positive psychology, and practices for healthier relationships at Wild Lotus Yoga, Swan River Yoga, and other venues. For more information on such offerings, please visit here.
Ongoing - Fund Raising Efforts for Tibetan & Nepalese Refugees
Hans Gruenig, Andrew Mclean, and Ashley Beach peforming Hindustani classical music at The Orpheum Theater.
When the 2015 earthquakes created the massive disaster in Nepal, Dr. Gruenig spearheaded and co-organized a New Orleans fund raising effort that raised several thousand dollars for relief efforts. In addition to doing organizing work, he played a concert for the benefit, including Hindustani classical music with Andrew McLean and kirtan music with Sean Johnson. Hans and Andrew also played at two other Nepal earthquake relief events, including the Louisiana Himalaya Association's event which raised over $55,000. Hans and Andrew both have friends from Nepal who were affected by the earthquakes. They continue to play music for a variety of fund raisers including Vision Fest, which raises money for eye care for Tibetan refugees in India.
2013 - Designated Speaker for Dalai Lama NOLA
Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama. Portrait © istock.com/ookpiks
Dr. Gruenig was a Designated Speaker for the Dalai Lama preceding his most recent visit to New Orleans. Dr. Gruenig delivered talks on Buddhism and meditation to organizations such as the Tulane School of Medicine and the Atlas Foundation in advance of the Dalai Lama's arrival, helping the New Orleans community to connect with the theme of the Dalai Lama's visit -- "Resiliency through Compassion and Connection" -- and to understand the relevance of Buddhist philosophies and practices to this theme. Dr. Gruenig's presentations included the following:
Tulane School of Medicine:
"Mindful Medicine: Meditation, Neuroscience,
and Evidence Based Wellness Practices"
Presentation to Doctors and Medical Students
"Buddhism in Dialogue"
Talk and Discussion
2013 - APA Conference Paper
"Reclaiming Sensual Pleasure and Conditional Happiness in Theravada Buddhism"
American Philosophical Association Central Meeting
Society for Asian and Comparative Philosophy Panel
New Orleans, Louisiana
2010 - 21st Century Heidegger Conference Paper
"Heidegger, Ambiguity, Context"
21st Century Heidegger Conference
UCD Hunamities Institute of Ireland
University College Dublin, Ireland
Dr. Gruenig has been interviewed on a variety of television and radio programs, including:
* Fox News by Nancy Parker regarding the power of contemplative practices;
* Whole Body Mental Health Radio by Dr. Jose Calderon-Abbo for an hour on mindfulness and positive psychology;
* The New Orleans Humanist Perspective by host Harry Greenberger for three 30 minute television show on Buddhism, meditation, and positive psychology in relation to secular humanism.
Appearance on The New Orleans Humanist Perspective
Honors & Awards
Dr. Gruenig has been recognized by several historically significant national academic honor societies, including Phi Beta Kappa (founded 1776 -- the nation's oldest), Omicron Delta Kappa (founded 1914), and Mortar Board (founded 1918), for excellence in scholarship, leadership, and teaching (respectively).
He has also received awards for his service and humanitarian efforts. In 2015 he received The President's Call To Service Award from President Barack Obama. He was also selected to become a member of the Order of the Shield, an international order of merit which honors individuals who engage in "the spiritual and moral strengthening of mankind" and "promote work for humanity and charity, for the relief of persons in sickness, distress, suffering or danger".