Buddhist Teacher: Jay N. Forrest

Jay Forrest is a Buddhist teacher and author who writes on Early Buddhism as preserved in the Early Buddhist Texts. Jay was ordained in 1988, received his doctorate degree in 2006, and was certified to teach Buddhist meditation in 2012. In early 2023 Jay had a major spiritual breakthrough, withdrawing to live as a hermit.


Jay Forrest
Jay Forrest did his undergraduate work at Central Bible College and Global University. He earned his Doctorate of Ministry (DMin) from Trinity Evangelical Christian University. He has taken postdoctoral courses in Buddhism from Harvard University, Princeton University, the University of Virginia, and Naropa University. 


Jay Forrest became a Christian in 1983 and was ordained as a Christian minister in 1988 by the International Ministerial Fellowship. Later he became a minister for the International Pentecostal Holiness Church, which is one of the largest Pentecostal churches in the world. Jay pastored churches in Wisconsin, Missouri, and Arizona. 

On April 11, 2011, Jay converted to Buddhism. He asked himself the question, who was the better teacher, Jesus or the Buddha. The answer was so clear, the Buddha was the better teacher. He not only told you what to do, he told you how to do it. 

On January 13, 2012, Jay became a Upāsaka, taking the Three Refuges and the Five Precepts with the late Bhikkhu Samahita. Jay also joined the Albuquerque Insight Meditation Center and began a deep dive into the teachings of the Buddha in the Pali canon. In order to better understand the Buddha's teaching, Jay taught himself how to read Pali. 

Meditation Training

Jay Forrest was trained in Zen meditation at St Michael’s and All Angels Episcopal Church by Rev. Brian C. Taylor, who received lay ordination from Soto Zen priest Taigen Dan Leighton. 

Jay Forrest was trained in Vipassana meditation at the Albuquerque Insight Meditation Center by such teachers as Brian Lesage. Jay took formal classes on Insight Meditation with Sally Armstrong of Spirit Rock Meditation Center. Jay earned a diploma in insight meditation from Aura Wellness Center and was certified by them to teach Buddhist meditation. Several years later Jay was also certified to teach meditation by The Priority Academy, which is accredited by the Complementary Therapists Accredited Association. 


Jay is currently a member of the Albuquerque Insight Meditation Center, the Vegan Society, the Buddhist Society, the Buddhist Publication Society, the Clergy Project, and the International Society for Philosophers.

Books by Jay N. Forrest

LinkedIn Profile