Well over a hundred years ago the painter Paul Cézanne said, “A time is coming when a carrot, freshly observed, will trigger a revolution.”
Has this revolution taken place, is it slowly taking place or is it about to take place? And what is the revolution to which Cézanne referred? How could something as insignificant, inconsequential and ordinary as observing a carrot trigger a revolution?
Cézanne meant that if we could see even a simple everyday object such as a carrot, as it truly is, our experience would be revolutionized. But what does it mean to see an object as it truly is? The key is in the phrase ‘freshly observed,’ which means to see clearly, unobstructed by the concepts that thought superimposes on our experience. In fact, most of us are completely unaware that our experience is filtered through a fine mesh of conceptual thinking that makes it appear very different from how it actually is.
As the Chinese sage Huang Po said, some 1200 years ago, “People neglect the reality of the illusory world.” The illusory world? Now that’s even more radical than Cezanne! It’s one thing to look freshly at a carrot, spade, house or world, but quite another to consider it an illusion. What did he mean?
We often hear phrases in the non-dual teaching such as, ‘The world is an illusion.’ But such phrases may create a rebellion in us, for we know that our experience is very real. So how to reconcile these two positions — one, ‘the illusory world’ and two, the undeniable reality of our experience?
Anything that appears must appear in or on something. For instance, an image appears on a screen; a chair appears in the space of a room; the words of a novel appear on a page; a cloud appears in the sky.
What about the mind, body and world?
Our only experience of them is what currently appears to us as thoughts, images, feelings, sensations, sights, sounds, textures, tastes and smells. In other words, all we know of a mind, body or world are appearances, and all these are continually appearing and disappearing. We may have a concept of a continuously existing mind, body or world, but we never actually experience such an object.
As Cezanne also said, “Everything vanishes, falls apart.” All we know of the world are perceptions that continuously appear and disappear. However, anything that appears and disappears must do so in or on something. What is that something?
Start with thoughts: wherever our thoughts appear is obviously what we refer to as our ‘self,’ ‘I.’ Our thoughts don’t appear outside of our self! However, we cannot see or find that ‘something’ in which thoughts appear because it has no observable qualities. As such, it is open, empty, transparent. But that doesn’t mean it is not known. It cannot be known as an object and yet it is not unknown.
If we are reading these words we are, by definition, seeing the screen on which they are written, although we may not be aware that we seeing it. If we are reading a novel we are, likewise, seeing the paper. If we are watching a movie we are, whether we realize it or not, seeing or experiencing the screen. If we are seeing clouds, we are experiencing the sky. It is not possible to see the words, novel, movie or clouds without, at the same time, experiencing whatever it is they appear in or on.
So, if we are experiencing thoughts we are necessarily experiencing whatever they appear in. Likewise, if we are experiencing a sensation or a perception — and the only experience we have of a body or world are sensations and perceptions — then we are also knowing or experiencing whatever these appear in or on.
In what does our perception of the world appear?
In what do bodily sensations appear? Perceptions of the world don’t appear in the world; sensations of the body don’t appear in a body. Perceptions and sensations appear in exactly the same ‘place’ as thoughts, that is, they appear in the open, emptiness of our self.
However, they do not just appear in our self; they are simultaneously known by our self, for our self is not just present but also aware; not just being but also knowing. Hence it is sometimes known as Awareness — the presence of that which is aware — or the light of pure Knowing.
Now, having discovered that all we know of a mind, body or world are thoughts, sensations and perceptions, and having seen that all these arise within our self, we may ask where they come from and of what they are made. What is their substance, their reality?
If we leave a jar of water outside on a freezing cold night, ice will start to form in it. The opaque ice is made only of the transparent water. However, the ice appears to be something separate from and other than the water. It seems to have its own independent existence or reality.
Likewise, the ice has a form and yet it is made of something that has no form. The ice gives form to something that is itself essentially formless. How is it possible for something that has no form of its own to appear as form, without anything being added to or taken away from it? The formlessness of the water has the capacity within itself to assume all possible forms. In fact, it is precisely because the water has no form of its own, that it is possible for it to appear as this multiplicity and diversity of forms.
Our experience is very much like this. The multiplicity and diversity of experience — thoughts, feelings, sensations and perceptions — appears in and is made out of our self. This ‘self’, pure Awareness, in which all experience appears, with which it is known and out of which it is made, is itself empty, transparent; it cannot be named and has no form, and yet it is the substance or reality of all names and forms.
All experience arises within our self, this transparent emptiness. And the only ‘stuff’ present in our self, out of which all experience can be made, is our self itself. It is our direct, intimate experience that all we know of a mind, body or world is made out of and is identical to the transparency of our own Being, the light of pure Knowing.
And what is present in our own self, prior to the experience of a thought, feeling, sensation or perception? Just itself, pure Awareness! All experience — that is, all thoughts, feelings, sensations and perceptions — is a modulation of the presence our own Being, the light of pure Knowing. The entire multiplicity and diversity of names and forms is made out of one transparent, empty, indivisible substance.
Just as the screen on which an image appears is usually overlooked due to our exclusive focus on the image itself, so this open, empty, transparent presence of our own Being is usually overlooked due to our exclusive focus on the objects of the mind, body and world — that is, on thoughts, feelings, sensations and perceptions.
However, just as it is not possible to see an image without seeing the screen so, although this Presence is usually overlooked, it is never truly unknown. Just as all we really see when we are seeing an image is the screen, so all we ever truly experience is the transparent, open, empty presence of our own Being, the light of pure Knowing. All It ever knows or experiences is Itself.
Love is the common name we give to experience when the ‘other’ is no longer experienced as ‘other;’ when the subject/object relationship collapses. It is to see the appearance of an image but to know it only as screen. It is to attribute the reality of the image to the screen. It is to know everyone and everything as one’s own self.
It is this transparent, empty Presence that, refracted through the mind, appears as a multiplicity and diversity of names and forms. However, the mind is itself a modulation of that very Presence. In other words, it is pure Awareness itself which, vibrating within itself, takes the shape of mind and, from the illusory point of view of one of the selves contained within that mind, seems to see a multiplicity and diversity of separate objects and selves, each with their own independently existing reality. In other words, the separate self is only a separate self from the illusory point of view of a separate self.
From the true and only real point of view of pure Awareness there is only its infinite self, refracted into an apparent multiplicity and diversity of finite forms, but never ceasing to be itself. This is what William Blake meant when he said, “If the doors of perception were cleansed everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.” This is what the Sufis mean when they say, “Wherever the eye falls, there is the face of God.” This is what Huang Po meant when he said, “People forget the reality of the illusory world.” This is what Jesus said meant when he said, “The kingdom of the Father is spread out upon the earth, and men do not see it.” This is what Parmenides meant, echoing the words of the Bhagavad Gita, when he said, “That which is, never ceases to be; that which is not, never comes into existence.” This is what Cézanne meant when he said that art must “give us a taste of nature’s eternity.”
All the great sages and artists from all times and all places have said or expressed this in one way or another. This is the one true revolution. At the root of all desire for change is this ultimate desire: to know only the reality of all experience; to know only love.
Unless and until the problems facing humanity are traced back to their ultimate source — the ignoring of this reality — they may be temporarily alleviated but will never be truly solved.
Rupert Spira – US meetings and retreats 2013
April 14 One Day Gathering in Sebastopol
April 15 Evening Meeting in Santa Cruz, CA
April 16 Evening Meeting in San Francisco
April 19-26 Two/Seven Day Gathering at Mercy Centre, CA
April 28-May3 Five Day Gathering at Guest House Retreat Centre
Bay Area, California
Unmani is well-known for her clarity, and gentle, but very direct pointing to the truth beyond all beliefs and concepts. Unmani spent years living a nomadic life in India, Australia and several other countries on a path of self-discovery, and now shares her insights with audiences.
Although she has had many teachers along the way, the zen master, Dolano, was her main teacher. Originally from England, Unmani now travels around the world holding meetings and retreats for those who genuinely wish to wake up to their true nature. In intimate dialogues, Unmani meets people where they are in their own self-exploration and encourages them to inquire and explore, in order to discover what is real in their own experience.
Die to Love (on Amazon)
I Am Life Itself (on Amazon)
Mar 14 2013 – Mar 17 2013
Spiritual Bypassing, True Intimacy and the Challenge of Being Fully Human
About the Conference
Nonduality derives from the Sanskrit word Advaita, which means “not-two,” referring to the fundamental consciousness that underlies the apparent distinction between perceiver and perceived. From the nondual perspective, the split between self and other is a purely mental construct. This understanding, rooted in the direct experience of countless sages through millennia, is at the heart of Hindu Vedanta, Judaism, Islam, and many schools of Buddhism, Taoism, and mystical Christianity. Nonduality points to “That” which is before and beyond the projections of a separative, self-reflexive mind. As nondual awareness emerges in the West in both therapists and clients, the practical and theoretical implications for psychotherapy are far-reaching.
This annual cutting edge conference hosts leading therapists and teachers who are exploring the confluence of nondual wisdom and psychotherapy. How does psychotherapy change when therapists and clients awaken to and embody their true nature as open, lucid awareness that is essentially not separate from the whole of life?
This year’s conference focuses on spiritual bypassing, true intimacy and the challenge of being fully human. We will explore together how to determine when the mind is using spirituality as a means of avoidance, and how to invite and embody true intimacy inclusive of our humanity.
History of the Conference
The first Conference on Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy was held in 1998 at the Mt. Madonna Center in Watsonville, California, and was hosted by The Center For Timeless Wisdom, a non-profit organization established by Peter Fenner, Ph.D. Subsequent conferences have been held annually since 2000 in the San Francisco Bay Area including ones hosted by the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology, John F. Kennedy University, and California Institute of Integral Studies.
Who Can Attend?
Anyone is welcome to attend. While the conference presentations are geared towards the theory and practice of psychotherapy and are available to be taken for continuing education units, they are accessible to the interested public. Many graduate students and psychology interns attend along with licensed psychotherapists. Clergy, bodyworkers, and students of nondual teachings will also find the presentations of special interest.
THURSDAY PRE-CONFERENCE WORKSHOP
The Altar of Presence: Investigating and Revealing our True Body
In non-dual therapy, our open and allowing presence, free of any agenda, points to the inherently open and welcoming presence that is our true and shared nature. Within this space, the conditioned beliefs and feelings of being a separate consciousness are invited to surface and be seen gently in their own time. It is in this enlightened seeing that true healing takes place and that the body and mind naturally realign themselves with our essential nature.
FRIDAY PRE-CONFERENCE WORKSHOP
Dark Night: The Breakdown of the Mythology of Me
Few issues can be brought to psychotherapy that better straddle the worlds of spiritual teachings and psychology than the dark night of the soul. This experience heralds the breakdown of the mythology of “me” and thus initiates an intense, comprehensive and life-changing spiritual crisis like no other. Given that therapy is the most common place people reach for help in darkness, it is vital that psychotherapists have information about this unique passage in order to treat, refer or offer resources to those who experience this phenomenon. It is critical for our world for us to see and support the emergence of beings living from tender-hearted nobody-ness, the living of life from a selfless and heart-based ground.
FRIDAY EVENING TALK
True spiritual autonomy arises when we have broken free of all the old structures, all psychological dependencies, and all fear. In order to discover this autonomy, we must be free of all external control or influence. This means that we must free our mind from all that it has collected, all that it clings to, and all that it depends on. Only then can that which is truly unique and fearless arise within us and begin to express itself. The culmination of spirituality lies not only in discovering our inherent unity and freedom, but also in opening the way for life to express itself through us in a unique and creative way.
Adyashanti, author of Falling into Grace, True Meditation, and The End of Your World, is an American-born spiritual teacher devoted to serving the awakening of all beings. His teachings are an open invitation to stop, inquire, and recognize what is true and liberating at the core of all existence. Asked to teach in 1996 by his Zen teacher of 14 years, Adyashanti offers teachings that are free of any tradition or ideology. “The Truth I point to is not confined within any religious point of view, belief system, or doctrine, but is open to all and found within all.” Based in California, Adyashanti lives with his wife, Mukti, Associate Teacher of Open Gate Sangha. He teaches throughout North America and Europe, offering satsangs, weekend intensives, silent retreats, and a live internet radio broadcast. “Adyashanti” means primordial peace.
Fierce Openness: Cutting Through Fixations of Self and Selflessness
Intertwining nondual awareness and psychotherapeutic attention, this presentation addresses the pitfalls of both spiritual and psychological bypassing. That is, using selfless (spiritual) elevation to evade the embarrassment self-centeredness, and using hesitant (psychological) self-preoccupation to evade the terror and wonder of selflessness. Drawing upon the earthy honesty of intimate, existentially-rigorous therapeutic relationship and the fierce spaciousness of unconditional presencing, we will consider skillful means of loosening self-limiting emotional compulsions and mental fixations; and, what it takes to more thoroughly embody fierce openness.
- Kenneth Bradford, PhD, is a psychologist in private practice, specializing in Contemplative-Existential Psychotherapy & Consultation. An Adjunct Professor at John F. Kennedy University, Ken he is in the vanguard of integrating meditative sensibilities and nondual presence into the practice of psychotherapy. He is co-editor (with John Prendergast) of, Listening from the Heart of Silence: Nondual Wisdom and Psychotherapy, Vol. 2, and has published several articles at the psychotherapy-nondual interface.
The Sun in Our Hearts and the Incarnation of Mutuality: Outgrowing the Preference/Avoidance Strategies of ‘Wakers,’ ‘Downers,’ and ‘Mutualites’
We’ll look into ancient and current sources that point to a specific node in the heart organ as the bodily seat of impersonal Self-realization and the source of the physical heartbeat throughout our lifetimes. Then, through lecture, Q&A, and mutual experiential exercises, we’ll explore how to outgrow spiritual bypassing of psychic trauma (often indulged by “wakers”), avoidance of cultivation of consciousness through over-indulgence in psycho-emotional issue work (by “downers”), and chronic,superficial relating at the expense of both mature autonomy and intimate vulnerability (by “mutualites”).
Saniel Bonder founded the international Waking Down in Mutuality transformational movement and was a founding member of Integral Institute. A Harvard B.A. in Social Relations, he studied Martin Buber’s I-Thou and Eastern transcendental yogas and regards Ramana Maharshi and Adi Da as his nondual lineage. He is a novelist and the author of many teaching books and, with his wife Linda Groves-Bonder, is now co-founding Human Sun Institute. www.whyWDMworks.com, www.sanielandlinda.com
Intimacy, Clarity and Compassion: When Divisions Fall Away
What is called spiritual bypassing is actually egoic fear posing as understanding. Spirit neither judges nor bypasses a single moment of its own movement, but in its non-separation, has the power to see and free conditioning with penetrating clarity and deep compassion. Intimacy is total non-separation-the substance and activity of our true nature. Being fully human is being intimate with what is, and thus completely authentic, which happens naturally with the cessation of any fixed identifications as human, divine, or even as “Consciousness.” When divisions fall away, we see the truth that shines in every experience and is revealed in every moment.
Dorothy Hunt serves as spiritual director of Moon Mountain Sangha, teaching at the invitation and in the spiritual lineage of Adyashanti. She is also the founder of the San Francisco Center for Meditation and Psychotherapy and has practiced psychotherapy since 1967. Dorothy is the author of Only This! and a contributing author to The Sacred Mirror, Listening from the Heart of Silence, and to Undivided: The Online Journal of Nonduality and Psychology. www.dorothyhunt.org
Oneness, difference and Intimacy: Exploring Ourselves and Meeting the Other
Alzak Amlani & Carlin Quinn
This talk explores how we can bring our freedom and the sacred space of non-duality to understand our personalities and contractions, face challenges in holding difference and move from being awakened bystanders to engaged healers in the world. By expanding into our multi-dimensional selves, we are more powerful, intimate and embodied in relationships with ourselves, others and our changing planet. The talk will integrate meditation, discussion and inquiry to evoke the fertile place of our unique human-Divine lives.
- Alzak Amlani, Ph.D. is a core faculty in the Integral Counseling Program at CIIS, where he teaches, “Multi-cultural Awareness for the Psychotherapist,” among other courses. He is also a transpersonal psychotherapist practicing for over fifteen years. His psychospiritual background includes the yoga tradition, Buddhism, Jungian psychology and he has been a student of the Diamond Approach for 10 years.
- Carlin Quinn, MFTI RYT is a full-time yoga teacher and psychotherapist in the San Francisco Bay area. She is currently completing a post-graduate training program at The Psychotherapy Institute in Berkeley; she also works with Alzak Amlani and co-teaches “Multi-Cultural Awareness for the Psychotherapist” at CIIS. She incorporates non-dual approach to teaching based on the Advaita Vedanta tradition and has been deeply influenced by Native American tradition, and the teachings of Tantra and Tibetan Buddhism. She has been a dedicated student of Hatha Yoga and The Patanjali Yoga Sutras for the last 13 years.
Becoming Fully Human: Nonduality, Relationship, and Sacred Duality
The ability to transcend the dualistic mind-set is an important human capacity. Yet a one-sided transcendentalism that mainly emphasizes the illusoriness of relative experience can aggravate the disengagement of people who are already disconnected from their bodily felt experience, as well as from human intimacy. In this way nondual teachings can contribute to spiritual bypassing and wind up having a dehumanizing effect in a world where our humanity is already under siege at every turn. We need an integrated spirituality in which liberation from the separate self brings with it a fuller appreciation of the wonder, intelligence, and beauty of human experience, along with fuller engagement in human relational life.
- John Welwood, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist and psychotherapist, an editor of The Journal of Transpersonal Psychology, and teacher whose innovative approach integrates psychological, meditative, and embodiment work. His books include Toward a Psychology of Awakening:Buddhism, Psychotherapy, and the Path of Personal and Spiritual Transformation; Journey of the Heart; Love and Awakening; and most recently, the award-winning Perfect Love, Imperfect Relationships. www.johnwelwood.com
Kenny Johnson will talk about how he and his co-facilitator Elizabeth Samet visit the women in County Jail #2 each week carrying in one intent: Be real, and simply listen to each person with Loving Kindness. This simple plan of “Being Empty” has been very effective. Kenny will do the same in this upcoming program “Be Empty” and see what appears.
Kenny Johnson spent over twenty years in prison and has been out of prison since 1997. He is a spiritual teacher and consultant to families and to those who have been out of prison and may be going to jail. He is also author of the book, The Last Hustle, chronicling his years as a criminal and how he was transformed while incarcerated. Kenny has one passion and that is sharing the message that “God’s Grace Is Here Now.” www.thissacredspace.org
Hiding Out in the Idea of Nonduality: Multidimensional Intimacy and Vulnerability in the Therapeutic Relationship
-A Clinical Discussion with John Prendergast & Riyaz Motan
Both clients and therapists can use nondual teachings to defend against a full-spectrum intimacy and vulnerability. We will explore the value and meaning of being open as infinite awareness and as a finite human being in the clinical setting. Through case vignettes, dialogue and group discussion, we will examine what it means to be fully available and discuss some of the subtle defenses and traps that can arise when working with clients with a nondual orientation or when positioning oneself as a “nondual therapist.”
- John J. Prendergast, Ph.D. is the editor-in-chief of Undivided: The Online Journal of Nonduality and Psychology (www.undividedjournal.com), the senior editor of two anthologies on the subject of nondual wisdom and psychotherapy – The Sacred Mirror (with Peter Fenner and Sheila Krystal) and Listening from the Heart of Silence (with Ken Bradford). He is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Psychology at CIIS and a psychotherapist in private practice in San Rafael. He also leads several private self inquiry groups. www.listeningfromsilence.com
- Riyaz Motan is a transpersonally oriented therapist with a private practice in San Francisco and San Rafael. Since the beginning of his career he has been interested in exploring how nondual wisdom informs the therapeutic encounter. For the past ten years Riyaz has served as a supervisor to CIIS students, and he has conducted training and supervision groups for the Pierce Street and Marina counseling centers in San Francisco. Riyaz has a passion for teaching and supervising therapists as they are learning to develop their own transpersonally oriented therapy style. He currently leads two ongoing transpersonal supervision groups.
Crucifixion: The Meeting of Heaven and Earth in the Human Heart
Unwittingly when we approach spirituality we often are seeking to somehow escape or transcend our humanness, to master instead of be mastered. And yet, the possibility of a full return home includes not only the clarity and breadth of transcendence, but also the depths of humility, tenderness and compassion that come with the embodiment of a mortal and sensitive vehicle. When the paradoxical wedding of divine and human are embodied in the human heart, we know ourselves as light enfleshed. Join Jeannie for a light-hearted and deep look at what it means to live as it ALL.
Maja Apolonia Rodé shares an inspiring array of creative expressions with one common purpose: to cultivate the realization and flowering of our true nature. From ethereal chants and irreverent raps to mandala art and sound healing, Maja’s creations invite us into the sacred and all-embracing depths of our being. She has worked closely with Adyashanti for 13 years as the Creative Director of his organization, Open Gate Sangha, and holds a Ph.D. in Transpersonal Psychology.
It’s that time of year again folks, time for the SAND 2012 conference in California!
Most of our readers are more than familiar with this gathering, for those of you who are new or wondering what it is: The Science and Nonduality Conference is a five-day international event where more than one hundred leading scientists, philosophers and spiritual teachers gather to explore a new understanding of who we truly are, both as individuals and as a society. This exploration is grounded in cutting-edge science and consistent with the ancient wisdom of non-duality—the deep understanding of the interconnectedness of life. The conference is a journey, an exploration of the nature of awareness.
I’ve looked over the many workshops and panels for this years conference and this one really caught my attention. It’s a topic that I feel could use some more discussion and what a great time and place to offer such a panel. As our blog title suggests, the name of the panel is Nothing Changes—Nothing Remains the Same: Does awakening to one’s true nature affect one’s behavior in the world?
This special panel will feature:
Jeff Foster, Chuck Hillig, Scott Kiloby and Tom Crockett
Realization, recognition, awakening and even enlightenment are all terms used for the moment at which all sense of separation (and the attachment to a particular identity that supports that sense of separation) seems to dissolve. Where there may be some disagreement is in whether this moment is the end of something or the beginning of something. Some teachers seem to describe it as a “light switch” moment, after which there is no further darkness. Other teachers speak of this critical and beautiful recognition as the beginning of a process of embodying or living this truth. As a personal and subjective experience, it is impossible to quantify the awakening experience of another. On the other hand, there is a body of literature and a strong intuition that suggests that if one experiences a real dropping away of the sense of separation and the need to cling to identity and form and time for self-definition, that that experience would be reflected in the behavior of an individual (how he or she shows up in the world in relation to others).
The risk in having and not having this discussion
The risk in having this discussion is that by defining or describing some observable or sensate qualities that we would expect to see in someone who had realized their own true nature, we are simply going to create a set of behaviors for people to seek after or affect in order to appear awakened. We would, of course, also run into the problem of suggesting that there is something that one is currently not, which could just set up more seeking, but it also seems obvious that when one is suffering or doing something that is causing pain to others, simply saying that you are perfect as you are is not very helpful. The risk of not having the conversation is that non-duality becomes a kind of trivial and intellectual philosophy in which quoting the right quotes, saying the right things and affecting the right manner equals enlightenment.
· Do we really believe that anyone who experiences an altered state of consciousness that reveals an underlying sense of unity in all apparent forms has awakened?
· Are we really willing to concede that anyone who claims to be awakened must be awakened?
· Is any behavior of someone claiming to have recognized their true nature enlightened behavior?
· Is behavior in the world completely independent of any realized state?
There is a growing interest in this thing we call non-duality and a lot of misinformation or a romanticizing of what it means. Some proponents claim that “waking up” is all there is and that “awakening” eliminates the need for shadow work or psychological growth. Others say that “waking up” is outside of the bounds of psychology and behavior and doesn’t impact them one way or another. Do we believe that someone who is suffering or addicted or chronically causes others pain can be enlightened or awakened without those behaviors or patterns being affected? If so, it seems like awakening might not be what many people are describing it as being. If we overemphasize the idea that everything is perfect as it is or the need to simply stop seeking, stop doing, and just embrace what is, are we then at risk of embracing behaviors that diminish others and cause them pain because we are now enlightened and we now know that it is “all an illusion?”
Is it possible that a mature form of non-duality might begin with a kind of heart opening and crystalline clarity about ones’ own true nature and the true nature of the world, and then require a kind of process of adaptation in which the formerly egoically identified self needs to shed behaviors that can no longer be supported in the light of this new truth?
Some of us seem to have recognized a kind of awakening that at one point we thought was the pinnacle—the end game—the summit of the spiritual mountain—only to find over time a subtle unfolding and deepening or broadening of our perspective. If, to quote from the Zen tradition “first there is a mountain, then there is no mountain, then there is,” then it seems as though a lot of people are getting stuck at the “then there is no mountain” stage. By identifying some of what we might expect from someone who had gone all the way through to the “then there is” stage, we might move the community conversation forward.
*This panel will take place Friday, October 26th, 8:00PM – 9:30PM (Sausalito Room)
Inner Directions Gathering
The Paradox Of Awakening
“I used to go to India to make ‘this’ happen. ” —Ram Dass
(about The Gathering)
*All photos ©Gary Elliot and Ramani Greenblatt.
May 1 - Tues - 7:30-9:30pm - Chuck Hillig - San Jose - Venue to be announced
May 3 - Thurs - 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Mountain View - East West Bookstore or other venue
May 5 - Sat – 11-2pm - Chuck Hillig - Palo Alto - Unity of Palo Alto or other venue
May 8 - Tues – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - San Francisco - Cultural Integration Fellowship or other venue
May 9 - Wed – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Oakland - Oakland Center for Living or other venue
May 11 - Fri – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Berkeley - Venue to be announced
May 13 - Sun – 2-5pm - Chuck Hillig - Walnut Creek - Unity of Walnut Creek or other venue
May 15 - Tues – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Petaluma - Venue to be announced
May 17 - Thurs – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - San Rafael - San Rafael Community Center of other venue
May 19 - Sat – 11-2pm - Chuck Hillig - Santa Cruz - Pacific Cultural Center or other venue
May 22 - Tues – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Santa Rosa - Awareness Barn or other venue
May 25 - Fri – 7-9pm - Chuck Hillig - Near San Francisco - venue to be announced
May 26 - Sat – 11-3 - Chuck Hillig - Near San Francisco - venue to be announced
May 27 - Sun – 11-3 - Chuck Hillig - Near San Francisco - venue to be announced
University of Lethbridge
Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Paradoxica: Nondual Psychology & Psychotherapy Conference
The Gathering That Started It All . . . Is Back!
Jeff Foster · Jac O’Keeffe · Karl Renz · Francis Lucille · Pamela Wilson · Rupert Spira ·
Peter Fenner · Prasad Paul Duffy · Stephen/Ondrea Levine · Dave Stringer · Kirtana ·
What Is It?
It’s a colorful tapestry of authentic spiritual teachings, drawn from different traditions and backgrounds, which all serve to point to the ever-present reality that is our true nature.
It’s a unique opportunity to celebrate with the respected presenters, and a community of like-minded people, in a joy-filled weekend of meditative dialogue, music, and silence.
Friday, April 20, 2012 – Sunday, April 22, 2012
Museum of Contemporary Art
700 Prospect Street
La Jolla, CA 92037
We Need Your Support
The Gathering is their primary fund-raising activity; it provides the critical funding to keep the activities going. Your participation is the single most important action that you can take to support this work. Please help spread the word by sharing the Gathering information with friends.
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*Non-Duality America is giving away two tickets to this event [value $355 ea.]. Please contact us to enter. Send in your contact info and why you would like to attend for a chance to win. No purchase necessary.
29th May – 3rd June, 2012
Zonheuvel Conference Centre | Doorn, The Netherlands
Mystics in all ages and cultures describe the self as infinite, stable and ever-present phenomena. Modern physics describe the world as a self-moving, self-designing pattern, an undivided wholeness, a dance. We, as a society, relate to the self mostly as an individual, unique, time bound form. Our common sense, as individuals and society, hasn’t caught up with this picture and it still based on long-held biases and stories. The Earth is clearly round but we still act as if it was flat…
We live at the dawn of a scientific revolution, every day brings new findings from a wide range of scientific disciplines about what it means to be human. Modern science now gives us the detailed descriptions of the mechanisms our brain needs to construct what we call the self.
Could it be this illusionary image of ourselves as separate beings that is keeping us in this perpetual state of anxiety, scarcity, fear, dissatisfaction and leading us, as a society, at this very delicate point in evolution?
“Many of you will have heard of the Science and Non-Duality Conference [SAND] that takes place in California every October. It is coming to Europe (Amsterdam) for the first time this year. The Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh predicted recently that the next Buddha would be the community. SAND is the embodiment of this prediction, providing a dialogue between a wide diversity of non-dual teachers and traditions and many of the leading scientific researchers in this field.
However, anyone who has attended SAND will know that it is much more than a conventional conference, albeit on an unconventional subject. It is part seminar, part festival, part celebration, part satsang, and promises to bring a new and exciting forum for Non-Duality to Europe. “
“I’m glad to be speaking at the conference. I’ll probably tie-in my grandfather’s stay in Amsterdam a hundred years earlier where he was a social revolutionary. I might talk about how non-duality is called an inner revolution by J. Krishnamurti, a revolution of the heart by Jeannie Zandi, or love’s quiet revolution by Scott Kiloby.
Others use the term revolution in relation to non-dual understanding. Somehow I’ll bring stories about my grandfather into my talk, so I think it’ll be fun and interesting. Also I’ll either be moderating or a panelist on a panel whose subject is The Business of Nonduality. What Maurizio and Zaya fashion with each SAND Conference is blissful and magical, and part of it is nothing less than their presence. If they didn’t show up, it wouldn’t be the same!
Luminous Field | February 10-20 | Millennium Park
Chicago is indeed a great place to live. There is always something interesting to see and or take in. So what’s the latest that’s tipping the cool factor scales? Read on…
This February, Millennium Park is transformed into a digital canvas of light and geometrical form with its first-ever site-specific video and sound installation by the Chicago-based artistic ensemble Luftwerk. Created specifically for Millennium Park, the installation will illuminate Cloud Gate – aka “The Bean” and its surrounding plaza with dramatic images and colors set to music (see photo gallery below).
Luftwerk is the collaborative vision of Petra Bachmaier and Sean Gallero. By merging video and light with material, surface, and structure, they shape content into an immersive sculptural experience. Their work illuminates the realm of special events, stage, gallery and public venue. Both artists are graduates of The School of the Art Institute of Chicago and have worked together for over ten years, forming Luftwerk in 2007.
*Free family programs, concerts and dance performances complement the installation in an adjacent heated tent.
Luminous Field will be on view on Friday and Saturday evenings from 6 – 10 PM, and Sunday - Thursday evenings from 6 – 9 PM.
Don’t miss this one!
Click on any image to view the slide show. Use arrows to navigate or esc.
Photo Credits: Milosh Kosanovich, Rasidel Slika, Jim Watkins, Carl Larson & Barry Grau.
The Nondual Wisdom & Psychotherapy Institute in conjunction with the Nondual Wisdom clinical consultation group invites you to join us in the 6th in our series of quarterly salons in the SF Bay Area. Salons are open to psychotherapists, interns, students and the interested public.
This salon will take place in San Rafael on Sunday, February 5th, from 2-5 p.m. The topic will be:
FEEDING YOUR DEMONS
A Transformational Process for Resolving Inner Obstacles to Non-Dual Awareness
Roberta Godbe-Tipp, Ph.D. and
Jeffrey Tipp, M.A.
Each salon is an opportunity to explore topics, sit with questions, open up a lively dialogue, and share discoveries at the interface of nondual wisdom and psychotherapy. This offers the possibility of venturing beyond satsangs and conferences while being together in the inexhaustible truth. It is also an opportunity for practitioners to share their work with colleagues, to network, and to build community.
Salons will include a meditation, a short talk/presentation/demonstration, followed by dialogue and discussion with all attendees, facilitated by presenter(s). A $15 donation is suggested.
To reserve a seat, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please put “Salon Registration” on the subject line and we will send you the address and driving directions. Seating is limited to around 25 at each venue. Reservations often fill quickly, so an early request is recommended.
*We are now offering 3 CEU’s for MFT’s and LCSW; the cost is $10. Please e-mail your License # in advance, if you would like to receive CEU’s. Please confirm if you are coming, and a reminder for those of you who have not yet registered. Also, we have changed the format, and there is no longer a pot-luck. We look forward to seeing you in February.
If you can’t join us for the salon, remember you can stay in touch through our Yahoo group.
More info at:
Live Meetings & Retreats
Weekend in Paris – 28th June & 1st July 2012
One Week Retreat at Le Moulin de Chaves, France, 29th July to 5th August 2012
Meetings in Eindhoven, Holland – Friday 2nd to Sunday 4th March 2012
Science and Non-Duality Conference – 29th May – 3rd June 2012
Weekend in Barcelona – 24th – 26th February 2012
Weekend near Verona – 17th & 18th March 2012
Weekend in Denmark – 15th to 17th June 2012
*Feel free to send in any Live Meetings & Retreat listings.
According to the founders, “the Science and Nonduality Conference was created to provide an arena where various aspects of nonduality can be explored, discussed, and experienced. Part seminar, part festival, part conference, this event also explores science and combines meditation, philosophy, art, music, dance, and entheogens to point the way to nondual experience, to aid in integrating nonduality into daily life, and to deepen the understanding of a fundamental nondual reality.
The conference opens up these experiences for further exploration. It places each attendee face-to-face with each other and with individuals living from the life-spanning varieties of non-dual expression.
This gathering is also a celebration of the bottom-line truth of our existence: that in our distinct and individualistic arisings and turnings, we are truly not limited, bound, or separate.”
Who are the conference founders?
When Zaya and Maurizio met in 2008, it immediately became clear that they could make a lot of noise together in this illusory world! They discovered that the only book they had both been reading for the past several years was “I Am That” by Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj. Almost immediately, they went to India together to shoot The Legacy of Nisargadatta Maharaj. The rest, as they say, is history…
Maurizio was brought up in Italy and went through many incarnations, always looking for answers under every stone. In 1986, he came to the USA on a 98 year-old sailing boat. He started working as an actor, model, and then filmmaker, but his thirst for knowledge was never satisfied, until he encountered I Am That in 2001 while shooting the documentary “Short Cut to Nirvana” in India.
Zaya hails from Bulgaria and has degrees in Engineering, Environmental Science, and also Film. For many years, she worked as an environmental activist in Holland and Bulgaria. She later produced and directed several award-winning documentaries in Europe and the United States. Her life long passion for science and mysticism finally came together with the emergence of the conference.
The team known as Maurizio and Zaya Benazzo are truly inseparable!
I sent over some interview questions and they proceeded to knock them out “tag-team” style. Let me explain: First Zaya answered [while M was driving!] and then they switched and Maurizio answered [while Z was behind the wheel]. They were read aloud once more and the finishing touches were added and sent. I thought that was adorable! Enjoy the interview.
Matthew: Congratulations on starting one of the most interesting conferences of the last decade! SAND is one of the few public events that make it possible for non-dual thought to emerge. It’s a great coming together of teachers, scientists, authors, musicians etc. I think such a “meeting of the minds” helps to facilitate in-depth discussion, fresh material and a genuine [in-person] way for folks to network in the community.
What’s your take please?
Yes, this year the feeling of community was palpable. Walking in the hallways you could feel the invigorating energy that only a like-minded, creative, mature community can spark. The combination of scientists, teachers from all traditions, philosophers and artists created an explosive mix that is still reflected in the feedback we are still receiving. “The next Buddha is the community” became the mantra of the gathering this year.
What would you say sparked your first interest in the connection between Science and Nonduality?
Both of us have always been interested in science and mysticism and for us somehow they were never separate. When we first met we went to India to film a movie about Nisargadatta Maharaj and one of the translators told us that Nisargadatta used to say: “…this is a scientific knowledge. One day scientists will come to understand all this very easily. It is scientific…” A few months after we found ourselves organizing this event. But, this is just another story! We do what we do and that is what it is.
Do you believe it is necessary to convince scientists of the non-dual nature of reality and vice versa?
We don’t believe that it is necessary to convince anybody about anything. We see our work more as a reflection of what “is” rather then having a mission or a goal to meet. The beauty is that many scientists do know and touch through their work the essential nondual nature of reality but most likely will not use the language the nondual teachers will use to describe it.
Do you believe it is important to help “nondualists” pay more attention to scientific theory?
Science today can tell us quite accurately about the body mechanisms from which the mind and the ego emerge, so, in a way, it becomes easier to understand things mystics have said for centuries like: “the ego is an illusion”.
Today you no longer have to believe the mystics blindly as you can also study the mechanisms through which this illusion manifests.
For example, teachers from all traditions have said: “you are not the doer.” Now mainstream neuroscience proves, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the sense of “I” comes later, after our actions have been performed. And up to six seconds later!
It would be interesting to know, which events were typically drawing greater numbers of participants – sessions with the prominent scientists and or spiritual leaders?
We asked that question in the evaluation form this year and to our surprise we discovered that the community has an interest in both aspects of the conference and they enjoy the balance.
What might a match between nonduality and science look like or does there need to be a match?
There is no need for a match.
We simply offer different fingers pointing to the same moon. Science can help us understand [more deeply] the wisdom teachings and vice versa. There is no “absolute” truth out there. Neither science nor spirituality can give us “final, absolute” answers.
At SAND, we simply invite our audience to experience thing by themselves and take nothing for granted. There is no absolute truth out there… There is only what is and how you perceive it is your point of view of it, your personal truth.
I applaud you guys for inviting more exploration of entheogenic studies as there are a lot of misconceptions about their usage. They can be a portal or “opening” in Consciousness [albeit temporary] and or successfully used to treat some patients with responsible administering etc. What’s your view on this?
Entheogens are another portal, a large [for some] finger-pointing to the moon, it’s very potent and direct portal that many have had the opportunity to explore at some point in their path of discovery of what is. These “substances” allow us to perceive our reality in a slightly different way opening the space for questions and deep insights.
That is why we have created a partnership with MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies). MAPS organize a session every year on entheogens as portals to non-dual awareness. Next year we will have even more sessions designed to inform and discuss this topic along with more dialogues about social justice and ecology.
It appears you are growing rapidly. Did you expect such a great turnout—so fast? Now in its third year, what are your future goals for the conference?
We didn’t expect such a fast growth. We thought this was a very niche, extravagant, subject in which not many will be interested—but clearly there is a deep longing and need for this conversation. Again, we don’t have “goals.” We believe the moment we create goals it is easy to get disconnected from what is in front of us needing to be expressed. What we do is listen to our community, encourage feedback and suggestions while, we share what touches and inspires us personally.
And more and more communities around the world are requesting to bring the conference on the road.
The event is also attracting folks from all over the world, what do you attribute that too? Flying halfway around the world for a single conference is an amazing testament!
Yes the audience is not local as we expected it to be at the beginning. This year we had people from twenty-one different countries and thirty-five states in the US. Evidentially “this understanding” spreads all over the globe regardless of boundaries and socioeconomics. It’s a movement trickling from every corner of the globe. The next Buddha is the community!
I’ve heard you might be taking the conference to Europe next year, is that true and what are your expectations for that locale. How do you think the European mindset differs on such material and speakers vs. the U.S.?
Yes, we will have the first SAND European conference in Holland May 31st-June 2nd, 2012. Since both Zaya and I were born in Europe and choose to move to the USA to work it is quite tingling to get back in there with a project.
We have a local organization helping us with the logistics and they are giving us a lot of advice and our European SAND community is already quite large (due to social media channels and the many Europeans that came to SAND already). It’s going to be a lot of fun! We are exploring a new format and most likely we’ll have less speakers and longer sessions. The goal, as in California, will be to involve the audience and reduce the separation between speakers and audience. Again: “The next Buddha is the community”.
You’ve always put out a very attractive 3-DVD set for purchase. I’ve enjoyed the mini interviews and questions you ask some of the key speakers at each event. This is a great way to experience the depth of the speaker(s). Kudos on that! How did that come about?
We are both filmmakers and before we started the conference we were already creating media, film, DVD’s, etc. on topics related to the conference, so creating a DVD series was a natural evolution of what we do. But this project is also pointing at the evolution of the event; the interviews become a way to document the evolution of the conference.
The interviews are made primarily by Zaya together with our good friend Nick Day and the two of them are an awesome production team.
I noticed for this year’s event, you added a streaming video option for folks who could not attend and or perhaps in another country. Tell us about the ForaTV service.
All the sessions from the conference are available now on ForaTV. We were looking for a way to make the conference available to everyone who couldn’t afford to travel. They’re a great channel and allow many people to be with us without traveling half way across the globe.
But, [if we wish to be picky], the issue with ForaTV is that it is not free and it is becoming clear to us that this material, this knowledge, belong to the community and it should be available for free. Next year we will have a different arrangement and we have some great ideas about our internet presence that will be unveiled very soon!
I have to ask, it seems folks are buzzing about the commercialization of nonduality and or the “spiritual marketplace” as some call it. What are your thoughts on this subject?
Does anyone complain about people charging money to design, promote or sell solar panels or items that will reduce our carbon footprint? I don’t think so.
It is great to see professional people devoting their time and energy in creating “dreams” designed to make the world a better place instead of thinking about money as a motivator.
To us the only factor is where your motivations are. We don’t see what we do as a commercial product. It is a sincere labor of love which financially doesn’t make sense at all. We have no financial partners, foundations or universities behind us. As long as there is an inspiration and energy we probably will keep doing it.
Is there a way to promote responsibly?
Surely there is a way to promote responsibly and the line is drawn by your motivation! We do very little promotion because we don’t have the resources to do more and in any case we see our community growing more from word-of-mouth which is way better than advertising.
We can only do what we can and look at what happens next.
I read some of the feedback on your blog from the first event (that took place back in 2009). This a summary of what the participants requested:
- less speakers
- longer talks
- more integration between talks and experiential
- a science closer to our day-to-day experience
- and better coffee…
Were you able to meet the challenge and offer that in 2010 and how about 2011? At least for better coffee? Haha!
Since the first year we have 30% less speakers, “only” one hundred and twenty or so.
We shortened the talks and the integration is slowly happening but it is not as complete as we would want it to be. We definitely got better coffee…we seem to have solved that issue at least!
There are so many little issues that are solved every year.
Don’t forget we are not conference organizers and volunteers mostly run the event. By-the-way, our volunteers need a huge thank you for their hard work and commitment! They are an amazing group of committed people.
I really appreciate being asked to moderate a panel this year on behalf of Non-Duality America. Although I could not attend, I am honored to be asked. The fact that gatherings like this exists is such a blessing for all.
Thanks again for hosting such a fun + creative experience and for your service and dedication…very inspirational!
Is there anything you would like to add?
Matt, really, without you there will be no conference. It is people like you devoting their time to “this” that are creating the foundation for such an event to materialize. And it is people like your readers [yes, I am talking about you], that are making all this happen.
Thank you both for being who you are and for doing what you do.
“THE NEXT BUDDHA IS A COMMUNITY!”
Love, Maurizio & Zaya
The Science and Nonduality Conference (San Rafael, California) is taking place this week.
This is a very unique gathering. Where else and you going to find more than 70 spiritual thinkers, philosophers, artists, teachers and psychologists in one locale to explore the concept [and paradox] of time? Nowhere that I know of —esp. from the perspectives of modern science, ancient traditions, philosophy, phenomenology, psychology and, of course, direct experience!
The conference, now in its third year, is well underway and features presentations of world-renowned quantum physicists, scientists, lecturers and authors like Jeff Foster, Stanislav Grof, John Hagelin, Menas Kafatos, Lynne McTaggart, David Peat, Dean Radin, Scott Kiloby, Rupert Spira, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Chuck Hillig, Joan Tollifson, Fred Alan Wolf and many more.
Stay tuned for more pic’s and event coverage.
FOUR INSPIRING EVENTS
- A Dialogue with Eckhart Tolle and Ram Dass
- Eckhart Tolle and Wayne Dyer in Conversation
- Kim Eng Presence through Movement Retreat
- A Hawaiian Retreat with Eckhart Tolle
A Dialog with Eckhart Tolle and Ram Dass
Nearly 30 years before the publication of Eckhart Tolle’s bestseller The Power of Now, the legendary Ram Dass captivated readers with his landmark book Remember, Be Here Now—a monumental work that quickly became “the instruction manual of choice for generations of spiritual seekers.” Now for the first time, these two master teachers will engage in an open conversation about spiritual awakening and the transformation of consciousness.
Eckhart Tolle and Wayne Dyer in Conversation
Bestselling authors Eckhart Tolle and Wayne Dyer have touched tens of millions of lives across the globe through their inspirational writing and life-changing public events. Now for the first time, these two master teachers will engage in an open dialogue about spiritual awakening and the transformation of consciousness.
Kim Eng Presence through Movement
Our bodies are more than just a physical form; they can also be a portal into a new way of being in the world. Join Kim Eng in Maui, Hawaii, for a weekend presence through movement retreat to help you learn how to access inner stillness and sustain it in everyday life as you experience the joy that comes through an unconditioned dimension of consciousness. Kim uses pointing-out instructions, meditation, and movement to access the formless, the state of consciousness that is presence.
Hawaiian Retreat with Eckhart Tolle
Eckhart Tolle often says that “nature is a portal to presence.” In this sense, the beautiful Hawaiian Islands could be considered a wide-open gateway to the Now! People from all over the world will come together at The Hyatt to open individually and collectively to the silence and joy of Being and to surrender to the depth and beauty of the present moment. There will be daily teaching sessions with Eckhart, and time for enjoying the beautiful natural surroundings.
This is a rare opportunity to be drawn into the “spaciousness that words can only point to” by the vibrant, conscious presence of Eckhart Tolle himself, amidst the stunning beauty of Hawaii.
Visit the main site for more info on this event.
*I am not an affiliate marketer for this event. I thought the Ram Dass + Eckhart Tolle event might interest many of our readers. Plus, who doesn’t love Hawaii?!
We thought this event [daylong workshop/retreat] hosted by East Bay Open Circle was something many of our readers might be interested in. We get excited when we see different communities and perspectives being integrated such as at this event as there is no one definitive path.
If you are in the Berkeley (California) area and are able to attend, this event will take place on October 8 from 11am to 5 pm.
Exploration will be through dialogue, talks and meditation (and perhaps a little music)…the topic of an emerging spiritual paradigm for modern times. Topics will include:
- a cross-traditional exploration of the nature of awakening
- the true meaning of non-dual and integrative practices
- the role of practice and meditation and
- how to live fully engaged with our busy and troubled world
Please join us and show your support as we continue to co-create an emerging spiritual paradigm for modern times [grounded in direct experience], rather than belief systems, and the collective shared wisdom traditions of the world.
For more details visit: East Bay Open Circle
*Click here to download a .pdf flyer for the event
Detailed below are Rupert’s meetings in the U.S. from August to December 2011.
Please click on the DETAIL link(s) for more info:
26th August 2011 – Evening Meeting in Ahwatukee, Phoenix, AZ. DETAILS
27th & 28th August 2011 - Weekend in Ahwatukee, Phoenix, AZ. DETAILS
6th September 2011 – Evening Meeting at Bodhi Tree Bookstore, Los Angeles, CA. DETAILS
8th September 2011 – Evening Meeting in Sebastopol, CA. DETAILS
9th September 2011 – Evening Meeting (Keynote Speaker) at Nondual Wisdom & Psychotherapy Conference, San Francisco, CA. DETAILS
10th September 2011 – Non-Dual Wisdom Conference at East Bay Open Circle, Berkeley, CA. DETAILS
11th September 2011 – One Day Meeting in Sebastopol, CA. DETAILS
14th October 2011 – Evening Meeting in Silver Spring, Maryland, MD. DETAILS
15th & 16th October 2011 – Weekend in Ijamsville, Maryland, MD. DETAILS
17th October 2011 – Evening Meeting in Charlottesville, VA. DETAILS
20th October 2011 – SAND Pre-conference Workshop, SAND, San Rafael, CA. DETAILS
20th – 23rd October 2011 – Science & Non-Duality Conference, San Rafael, CA. DETAILS
24th to 29th October 2011 – Five Day Retreat at Earthrise Retreat Center, CA. DETAILS
29th October 2011 – Evening Talk in Grass Valley, CA. DETAILS
30th October 2011 – One Day Meeting in Grass Valley, CA. DETAILS
11th – 16th December 2011 – Five Day Retreat, Bailey Farms, Millwood, NY. DETAILS
2011 Conference on Nondual Wisdom
“Relationships within the Undivided”
September 8-11, 2011
CIIS Main Building
1453 Mission Street, San Francisco
12 CEUs available (MFT, LCSW, RN) must attend full conference
Full weekend: $250 regular, $150 student/member/CIIS community price
Single day passes available
Pre-conference workshops and Friday evening talk require separate registration
Lynn Marie Lumiere
Evelyn and Paul Moschetta
ABOUT THE CONFERENCE
As nondual awareness emerges in the West in both therapists and clients, the practical and theoretical implications for psychotherapy are far-reaching. This annual cutting edge conference hosts leading therapists and teachers who are exploring the confluence of nondual wisdom and psychotherapy. How does psychotherapy change when therapists and clients awaken to and embody their true nature as open, lucid awareness that is essentially not separate from the whole of life?
This year’s conference focuses on relationship as experienced within and as the Whole, and how awakening affects all relationships – therapeutic and non-therapeutic, alike.
The conference is appropriate for licensed psychotherapists, psychology graduate students, interns, clergy, bodyworkers, and anyone interested in nondual teachings.
Friday evening talk:
“The Essential Nature of Peace and Happiness” with Rupert Spira
Radical Love: A Nondual Approach to “Coupledom”
with Judith Orloff
4 CEUs available (MFT, LCSW, RN) for each workshop
Register today to guarantee your spot.
Noted author/speaker Scott Kiloby has just announced the latest Series 5 dates for his popular Living Realization online meetings. I’ve personally attended some of these meetings and I know you will find the online sessions helpful and thought-provoking.
What’s great about these meetings is that people can participate and gain support, gather together in a community of like-minded people, and meet one-on-one or in group sessions with Scott—all via the Living Realization website! The live online meetings are based on the Scott’s excellent e-book of the same name and use easy-to-use webcam technology [powered by WebEx].
Scott is constantly developing this unique format, while attempting to offer more direct benefit to people. This format includes three different meeting groups:
Middle Way Group
These groups are designed to help Scott meet people where they are.
You don’t need any special technological skills to take part in these online meetings. Simply navigate to the Meeting Group that interests you or best represents where you are in your spiritual path and sign up/register.
“Many teachings invite people to turn away from the content of their lives. Living Realization invites us to go through the specific content of our lives, using it as the doorway to liberation. This new approach is much more personal and allows for very specific inquiry and dialoguing.” ~ Scott Kiloby
Scott is simplifying and demystifying the message of enlightenment or “non-duality” and helping to bring it to the West. He is reaching out to all people who are suffering or seeking or cannot seem to find fulfillment in this life, no matter where they go or what they do. He is communicating to them that freedom is available and that it is actually contained in their very presence, yet it is overlooked.
Series 5 online meeting schedule:
Our experience is always only one seamless, intimate totality. Only a subsequent thought appears to split it up into different categories of experience, such as mind, body and world, each made out of a different substance.
In fact, all experience is made out of the same stuff – it could be called ‘experience,’ ‘awareness,’ our self or ‘I.’
No part of experience is any closer to or further away from experience, awareness or our self than any other part. It is not even that the experience of the mind, body and world is close to experience, awareness or our self. It is closer than close. How close is an image to the screen?
There are not ‘two things’ in experience. In the final analysis, which is, in fact, just the analysis based on our true experience, it is not even correct to say that all experience of the mind, body and world are permeated or saturated with awareness or presence.
The statement that the mind, body and world are permeated or saturated with awareness or presence, implies that there is an independent mind, body and world present in the first place, which could be permeated by something that is other than or separate from itself, in the way that a sponge is permeated with water. But this is to start with the belief in the independent reality of the mind, body and world that are, in fact, never found as such.
However, such a statement is valid if we believe in the independent reality of the mind, body and world. It draws attention to the fact that every experience of the mind, body and world is utterly one with awareness or presence. It is a ‘half-way’ stage.
As it becomes more and more obvious that all experience is permeated with awareness or presence, the awareness or presence aspect of experience becomes more predominant and the apparently objective aspect of mind, body and world, that is, the changing names and forms, begin to lose their apparent solidity and independence.
Initially awareness seems to be the hidden, insubstantial, intermittent aspect of experience and the mind, body and world by contrast seem evident, substantial, stable and real. As such, we see only the objects mind, body and world. Then our attention is drawn to the fact that awareness permeates every apparently objective experience of the mind, body and world.
However, the more we contemplate our experience the more obvious it becomes, gradually in most cases, that awareness is, in fact, the stable, ever-present and substantial aspect of experience. As this becomes more and more our lived experience, so the corresponding reality of the mind, body, and world, as independent objects in their own right, begins to diminish.
This contemplation may begin at the level of the mind but in time it descends into the depths of our being and takes us over completely. It pervades our feelings and perceptions as well as our thoughts.
The world and awareness change places.
At a certain point there is a shift. The reality we once attributed to the mind, body and world is understood and experienced to reside with our self, awareness.
The experience of the mind, body and world in the waking state becomes more and more like the experience of them in the dream state. It loses its apparently independent, solid and separate reality, and is understood and experienced instead to be a dreamlike superimposition upon awareness.
Although we continue to see the appearances of the image on the screen, our actual experience is always only the screen itself.
It is not that normal experience becomes unreal or insubstantial. Rather, it is that the reality and substance of experience is known and felt to be made only of the intimacy of our own being, awareness.
The mind, body and world are experienced to be unreal as objects but real as awareness, just as the fields in a film are unreal as fields but real as screen.
However, they were only ever real as fields from the imaginary point of view of a separate self. From the real and only point of view of our self, awareness, experience is always only ever real, as awareness.
So the ‘object-ness’ of objects slowly fades and is replaced by the ‘present-ness’ of awareness, just as darkness is slowly replaced by light in the early hours of the morning.
We can never say how, when, why or where this dissolution happens precisely because the how, when, why and where dissolve along with the darkness. Those questions no longer remain to be answered.
This shift is natural. To begin with it may seem that we have to make efforts to understand this but after a while the truth of our experience, the obviousness of it, begins to impress itself upon us effortlessly.
It is like reaching the top of a hill and starting to walk down the other side. Suddenly the hill, which initially seemed to oppose our efforts, now begins to cooperate with them.
Or, we could say it is like doing a jigsaw puzzle. To begin with the pieces seem abstract, incoherent and unrelated. However, as we proceed the picture begins to fill out and it becomes easier and more obvious. There are less and less possibilities. This places us on a straight and narrow track where everything falls into place quickly.
It is the same here. All the mind’s objections are met with understanding until a time comes when there are no more objections left. The mind, which constructed the apparent duality in the first place, has deconstructed its own edifice.
Those residual bodily sensations that seemed to support the now discredited belief in a separate inside self and its correspondingly separate outside objects, others or world, are left to tell their empty story and are slowly consumed in the light of understanding.
This leaves us on the brink, in openness and unknowing.
From here awareness shines more and more brightly dissolving within itself any last vestiges of separation and otherness that linger out of habit, revealing awareness shining in and as itself. It doesn’t matter if it is long or slow, for there is nothing to wait for any more, nothing to long for, nothing that is lacking and no-one to wait.
Even our desire for truth or reality somehow loses its fierceness and can no longer really be called desire, for there is no room for desire here, however noble. Our desire is transformed into love. In fact, it was always love, disguised as desire by a thin veil of otherness.
It was always only that for which it was seeking.
The Transparency of Things
June 5 – 10, 2011, Rhinebeck Campus
Omega Institute for Holistic Studies
Science and Nonduality
1:00 PM – 2:30 PM – April 27, 2011
Are Buddhists and scientists talking about the same thing? Buddhist teacher at the Shambhala Institute Jeremy Hayward describes his take on consciousness and delves into the concept of the “I.”
Jeremy Hayward received a PhD in theoretical physics at Cambridge University followed by research in molecular biology at M.I.T and then became a practicing Buddhist for thirty years. From that unique prospective he discusses the sense of doership, if consciousness is all there, and whether scientists and Buddhists are saying the same thing.
Post-screening discussion moderated by Scott Kiloby and John Sennhauser
*This film and discussion complements this year’s Brainwave series on dreams.
Scott Kiloby is a teacher/author on non-duality, including the book Love’s Quiet Revolution: The End of the Spiritual Search and Reflections of the One Life: Daily Pointers to Enlightenment. Also of interest is the new Living Realization e-book and website. His upcoming book is called The Natural Rest Presence Method and is scheduled for release in 2011.
John Sennhauser is an attorney whose involvement with Shambhala began in the 1970′s when he moved to Boulder, Colorado to study theater and dance at Naropa University. There he met Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche and became his student. He is now the chairman of the Shambhala Trust and continues to perform from time to time.
©2011 RMA · 150 W. 17 St., NYC 10011 · 212.620.5000
You’ve probably noticed that we have posted various listings for “Live Events” lately for several teachers and authors. Most of these would most likely fall under one of the following categories: meetings, talks, get-togethers, satangs, retreats or intensives. However, we are pleased to introduce you to a unique way of holding such an event. In this case, an “online satsang” with Rupert Spira.
For those of you who are unsure about the format of online satsang, here’s a quote from Rupert’s last newsletter [from one of the past participants] “The application works very well. I have to admit that I wasn’t so sure about a satsang online, but it was a very pleasant surprise. It was a great meeting, vibrant and alive, more than some live satsangs I’ve attended.”
This was indeed an encouraging response to a rather new venture, which is brought to you by the fine folks over at Neti Neti Media. I certainly agree that it’s a wonderful way for people all over the world to get together. It appears that one of their earlier online meetings was attended by people from USA, UK, Sweden, Australia and Japan!
What to expect?
Conversations With Rupert Spira on The Non-Dual Nature Of Experience
It is both audio and video. Rupert will start the seminar with a short contemplation and will then receive questions from participants. If you have a question, then you raise your “virtual hand” [by simply clicking a hand image] and when you are connected/selected, your image appears on everyone’s screen while speaking.
When you are finished with your question or comment, then the image automatically switches to the main host or speaker on all the participants’ screens – pretty cool!
This is very similar to Skype for everyone who is familiar with that, except better quality perhaps.
Feel free to attend the next web seminar on January 30th if you’d like to see how it all works. This live video webcast will be the first of a series of online meetings and it will last for two hours. You can register for the new upcoming web seminars with Rupert and hear past recordings here.
*Please note: they recommend that you have a video camera connected to your computer [prior to the meeting] so you can fully experience and take part in the meeting.
For more information on Rupert Spira, please visit his website here.
Waking Up to Your True Nature
Unmani offers spontaneous and direct non-dual teachings, in Europe, USA and Australia. She holds regular Satsang gatherings (which she calls “Meeting in Not-Knowing”) as well as retreats. She has a very unique style of intimate dialogues in these gatherings.
Meeting in Not-Knowing with Unmani is a chance to ask questions, have a dialogue in clarity or simply sit in silence.
Washington D.C, USA
|Friday 11th February
|Introductory Talk • ‘Who are you really?’
One Circle Center, Silver Spring, MD.
Directions at www.OneCircle.net
|Sat/Sun 12th & 13th February 10am – 4pm||Weekend Intensive • ‘Awaken to the Mystery’
One Circle Center, Silver Spring, MD.
Directions at www.OneCircle.net
For further information and/or to RSVP for Weekend Intensive:
or call 301-949-8984.
(Potluck lunch – please
bring food to share).
Prior registration is required.
Preference is that you
register for the whole weekend. However, Saturday only attendance is possible.
|Wednesday 16th February
|Meeting in San Jose. (Details of venue to be confirmed)
For more information email:email@example.com
|Thursday 17th February
|Meeting in San Jose. (Details of venue to be confirmed)
For more information email:firstname.lastname@example.org
|Friday 18th – Monday 21st February
||Retreat in Ciudad Colon.||For more information see Retreats page|
|One Day Retreat with Unmani in Ciudad Colon
For more information email:email@example.com
|Wednesday 2nd March
|‘Awaken to the mystery’
Pacific Cultural Center.
1307 Seabright Ave, Santa Cruz, CA 95062.
|Thursday 3rd March
|‘Dive into not knowing’
East Bay Open Circle
Berkeley Unitarian 1924 Cedar Street
|Friday 4th March
|‘Wake up to who you are’
The Open Secret Bookstore
923 C Street San Rafael, California 94901 ~ 415- 457- 4191
|Saturday 5th March
|‘The End of Seeking’ – One day retreat with Unmani
The Open Secret Bookstore
923 C Street San Rafael, California 94901 ~ 415- 457- 4191
|$65 for the whole day|
|Monday 7th March
East West Bookstore
324 Castro Street, Mountain View, CA 94041
Wednesday 12th October, 7.30pm-9.30pm
Open Secret Bookstore
923 C Street San Rafael 94901 ~ 415- 457- 4191 www.opensecretbookstore.com
Friday 14th October, 7-9pm
8476 Sonoma Avenue, Sebastopol, 95472
Saturday 15th October, 2-5pm
Open Secret Bookstore
923 C Street San Rafael 94901 ~ 415- 457- 4191 www.opensecretbookstore.com
Sunday 16th October, 1-4pm
Pacific Cultural Centre,Santa Cruz
1307 Seabright Avenue
Santa Cruz, CA 95062
Monday 17th October, 7-9pm
East Bay Open Circle
Berkeley Unitarian 1924 Cedar Street, Berkeley
Tuesday 18th October, 7.30-9.30pm
Unity of Palo Alto - 3391 Middlefield Rd, Palo Alto
Thursday 20th October, 2-6pm
Pre-conference Workshop with Unmani
Please register here:
Science and Non-Duality Conference in San Rafael
For more information see:
A week of Meetings with Unmani in San Jose, Costa Rica – Details to follow soon…
10 Day Retreat in Montezuma, Costa Rica 21st November – 1st December
For more information and to book your place see http://www.not-knowing.com/retreats.htm
New York, USA
Saturday 3rd December, 2-5pm (with a teabreak)
900 West End Ave – Apt 9A (corner of 104th Street)
New York, NY 10025
See Meetup Group (
) for more details
Sunday 4th December, 2-5pm (with a teabreak)
900 West End Ave – Apt 9A (corner of 104th Street)
New York, NY 10025
See Meetup Group (
) for more details
“To meet Jeff is to meet the embodiment of Oneness, not just the talk of it. He sees that no word could ever capture ‘this’. He knows that he is not a teacher. Yet he knows also that people come to him seeking to be taught what ‘this’ is. His absence allows for pure love to express itself without trying to stay within any particular lineage or way of expressing the inexpressible. That is the hallmark of a ‘good’ nondual expression. It’s that free, like water flowing wildly down a stream.
The value in Jeff’s sharing is not that you will walk away with fancy nondual concepts, but rather you will walk away as nothing, seeing yourself in everything. Those who meet Jeff see that nonduality is not about doctrine or dogma. It is not about positions such as ‘there is no self’. When you meet Jeff, you meet that which is free of all positions. Therefore you meet love. You meet yourself.”
-Scott Kiloby Author of LIVING REALIZATION
NONDUALITY MEETINGS IN LONDON, UK
Next regular London meetings:
Sunday 13th March 2011
- Pay at the door. Cost £15. Please bring the exact change if possible.
- No need to book - just turn up on the day.
There is usually a break about halfway through the meeting. Tea, coffee and biscuits are provided.
Location: The Philadelphia Association, 4 Marty’s Yard, 17 Hampstead High Street, London, NW3 1QW. Maps here and here. Marty’s Yard is a tiny lane just off Hampstead High Street. It is just a few minutes’ walk from the Hampstead Underground Station. It is served by Number 46 and 268 buses, which stop in Hampstead High Street.
If you have any questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07828 119 533.
NONDUALITY MEETINGS IN LEICESTER, UK
- Pay at the door. Cost £15 (£10 concs). Please bring the exact change if possible.
- Please allow plenty of time to find the venue so we can begin together at 1pm.
- There will be a break about halfway through the meeting. Refreshments will be provided.
- Location: Quaker Meeting House, 16 Queens Road Leicester, Leicester LE2 1WP.
To reserve a place please visit the Nonduality Leicester Meetup Group page:
Visit the Nonduality Leicester website.
FEBRUARY: LONDON EVENING MEETING and WEEKEND INTENSIVE
Evening Open Meeting:
Friday 11th February 2011
7.30 – 9pm
Location: Maria Assumpta Centre, 23 Kensington Square, London, W8 5HNFor the Friday evening meeting there is no booking required – please pay at the door. Cost is £15 (£10 concession).
Saturday 12th February 2011, 11am – 6pm (Registration from 10.15)
Sunday 13th February 2011, 10am – 4pm
Location: Maria Assumpta Centre, 23 Kensington Square, London, W8 5HN
Please book in advance for the Weekend Intensive and pay at the door. The cost for the weekend (Saturday and Sunday) is £125 (£95 concession). If you sign up for the weekend, you may attend the Friday evening meeting without charge.
To reserve a place, or if you have any questions, please email email@example.com or call 07828 119 533.
NONDUALITY MEETINGS IN HOLLAND
AMSTERDAM AFTERNOON MEETINGS
Saturday 19th February 2011 14:00 – 18.30 € 40
Sunday 20th February 2011 14:00 – 18.30 € 40
LOCATION: Oranjekerk, Tweede van der Helststraat 1A, 1073 AE, Amsterdam Map
Directions to Oranjekerk (doc)
Meetings are in English. Please pay at the door.
BOOKING RECOMMENDED: Please mail your reservation to firstname.lastname@example.org
NONDUALITY MEETINGS IN GERMANY
Meetings in HAMBURG, Germany
Friday 25th February 2011
Entrance fee €10
Saturday 26th February 2011
Entrance fee €40
Sunday 27th February 2011
Entrance fee €40
Location: Buddhistisches Zentrum, Bahrenfelder Straße 201 B, 2. Innenhof, 22765 Hamburg
BOOKING RECOMMENDED: Please mail your reservation to email@example.com
Meetings are in English.
7-DAY RETREAT IN SOMEREN, HOLLAND
18-24 MARCH 2011
More details coming soon.
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org
NONDUALITY MEETINGS IN NICE, SOUTH OF FRANCE
Friday 22nd April 2011
Saturday 23rd April 2011
10.30-12.30 & 2-5pm
€35 for the day
Sunday 24th April 2011
10.30-12.30 & 2-5pm
€35 for the day
- Location: Le Petit Mas – 2 Chemin du Puy – 06270 Villeneuve Loubet, France. MAP.
- The talks will be translated into French.
- Booking recommended at
- For more Information: Visit www.lepetitmas.fr or call Danièle Mencarelli : (+33) 06 20 86 60 57 / (+33) 04 93 53 66 11. Or email Laya Jakubowicz email@example.com
*The open meetings are always very friendly and informal, and there are plenty of opportunities to ask questions, if questions arise. And of course, if you just want to sit in silence and listen, then that’s fine too. Some of the meetings are very small and intimate, with only a few people, some are larger. But the message is always the same: what’s happening presently is the only miracle, and you are already Home.
We hope to see you soon!