The Dude abides

Jeff Bridges has cancer. We are following the progress of the Renaissance Man.

Jeff Bridges has cancer

The famous actor has lost his hair but not his courage and good spirits in his battle against lymphoma.

The star of so many great movies* including the cult classic ‘The Big Lebowski’ recently revealed his shaved head on his Instagram page and posted that he is “feeling good.” He included a picture of his new comfort puppy Monty.

Jeff Bridges has cancer

“I go in for a CAT scan to see if my new protocol is shrinking my tumor,” he posted. “Turns out it’s working beautifully. The thing has drastically shrunk.”

Family of actors

Jeff Bridges — the son of the late actor Lloyd Bridges and brother of actor Beau — is not going it alone. He has the support of his wife of 43 years, Susan, and three daughters, Isabelle, Jessica, and Haley.


He also has his Buddhist faith and has learned transcendental meditation. When he’s working on a movie he meditates for half an hour before going on the set.

Now 71, the multi-talented Dude — acting, music, photography, art — was diagnosed with lymphoma in October and promised to keep folks posted on his website, in which he displays the extraordinary talents of a modern-day Renaissance Man.


Check out the Dude’s website ❌


*ABIDE: to endure without yielding, as in, abide the onslaught of an enemy.

*Jeff Bridges won Best Actor Oscar for the 2009 film ‘Crazy Heart,’ and Academy Award nominations for ‘The Last Picture Show’ (1971), ‘Thunderbolt and Lightfoot’ (1974), ‘Starman’ (1984), ‘The Contender’ (2000), ‘True Grit’ (2010), and ‘Hell or High Water’ (2016). He also starred in critically acclaimed roles in ‘The Fabulous Baker Boys’ (1989), ‘The Fisher King’ (1991), and commercially successful films ‘King Kong’ (1976), ‘Tron’ (1982), ‘Iron Man’ (2008), ‘Tron Legacy’ (2010) and ‘Bad Times at the El Royale’ (2018).

Jeff Bridges has cancer

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My own ‘space dancer!’

My Buddhist teacher is cloaked in mystery

I have never met her — yes, I do know her gender — or heard her voice. We correspond via email, an annoyingly modern means that seems inappropriate for such an ancient form of enlightenment. But as she would say, and in fact did say: It is what it is.

I am new to this game so I looked up a couple of things online, notably this: 

A female embodiment of enlightenment is called a dakini — the Tibetan word for which is khandro, meaning ‘sky-goer’ or ‘space-dancer,’ indicating that these women have left the confines of earth and inhabit the vastness of space.*

A sky-goer! A space-dancer! I’ll buy a ticket to that!

I emailed her the other day saying I was planning to move away from the house my wife and I shared until her death one year, seven months and six days ago. (But who’s counting?)

Ever since she died I have had hopes of finding something as simple and yet as difficult as peace of mind, but my mind is as besieged by ghosts and grief and guilt as it ever was. If I could have one wish it would be to have Beowulf leap into my brain and slay the demons inside. What’s the alternative, a bullet?


But failing both options, as I told my teacher, I’m going to get the hell out of this house and this town and try and put the demons behind me.

“Those smoked beef strips you sent me in your ‘care package’ will come in handy,” I wrote to her, “like the beef jerky that sustained the explorers and coureurs du bois of centuries past. (I’ve eaten the chocolates and the chocolate cookies and the hand-cooked potato chips.)”

The move, I told her, will finally take me away from this wretched house. I will walk away from it like Bashō setting out on ‘The Narrow Road to the Deep North.’ Except I will drive away in my Jeep.


“Please,” she wrote back to me, “don’t drive off in a state of boredom and disappointment to seek new adventure. If you can’t find comfort at home in your own company, you won’t find comfort anywhere else you go — loneliness and emptiness will follow you everywhere. Ultimately nothing external (not even Beowulf) would be able to slay the demons. We have to accept whatever reality we are dealt with and make peace with it by ourselves.”

Clearly, good sound dakini advice, and advice that I will follow. I will stay put (after all, the house is fully furnished with memories) and keep plugging away at that elusive peace-of-mind thing.


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