Stacey Glassman Mizener has 35 Buddhas: in the bedroom, in the living room, on the balcony, in the hallway, and in the office. She has ancient Buddhas, modern Buddhas and Buddhas on canvas. “When I see Buddha, I drop all the false pretenses and I’m barefoot in the sand, on the beach, offering the best of myself and my intentions to the world,” said Glassman Mizener, who works as vice president of marketing and business development for Metro 1 Properties, a Miami real estate company specializing in developments in the city’s urban core. Her collection began innocently enough 16 years ago when she was on a month-long yoga vacation to Bali. She’d ridden two hours on a scooter to get to an obscure temple when she was smitten with a huge Buddha painted on canvas. She had just enough money in her wallet to buy it, but didn’t know how she’d get it home. The temple staff wrapped it up in two sarongs, allowing Glassman Mizener to ride back with it slung over her shoulder. “I took it everywhere I went,” she said.
Since that time, people she loves have been on the lookout for ways to add to her collection. Glassman Mizener knew her boyfriend of three months was a keeper when he gave her a Buddha on canvas from Bali for her birthday, one he had to have packed and shipped weeks before. “This man sees me,” she thought. “He knows me.” They moved in together a week later. Today, he’s her husband.
She treasures a Buddha her grandmother gave to her, and another sleek, contemporary white one that was a gift from her mom. Then there’s a three-foot Buddha that is, at least at this point, taller than her one-year-old daughter Scarlet. In fact, even at such a young age, Scarlet has become part of her mom’s daily Buddha ritual. Glassman Mizener rises at six in the morning to meditate on the beach and do her morning yoga. When she returns, she brings rose petals to place at the Buddha shrine at the entrance to her home. Scarlet is often with her to arrange the petals around the statues. Glassman Mizener has already started Scarlet’s Buddha collection with a pink piggy bank fashioned like the deity. She hopes the Buddha will serve the same function for her daughter: “When I see Buddha, I snap into my best self.”