086. Joan Tollifson

Joan TollifsonJoan Tollifson writes and talks about the ever-changing, ever-present aliveness of Here / Now, that which is obvious, unavoidable and impossible to doubt. She has an affinity with Advaita, Buddhism and radical nonduality, but she belongs to no tradition or lineage. Her main teacher was Toni Packer, but Joan has also studied with several Buddhist teachers and has spent time with a number of Advaita and nondual teachers. She has been holding meetings on nonduality since 1996. In her books and meetings, Joan invites people to explore their actual present moment experience and to question the deep-seated assumption that we are each an independent entity encapsulated inside a separate bodymind looking out at an alien world. Instead, we may discover that everything is one seamless, boundless, unbroken whole in which there are no separate parts. Joan also invites people to question the deep-seated assumption that we are in control of our lives (or should be), and she points to the realization that everything is one choiceless happening. Joan is known for her honesty and her sense of humor. She is the author of Bare-Bones Meditation: Waking Up from the Story of My Life (1996), Awake in the Heartland: The Ecstasy of What Is (2003), Painting the Sidewalk with Water: Talks and Dialogs about Nonduality (2010), and she has written two more books that are slated for publication early in 2012. Joan has lived in California, New York and Chicago, and is currently living in southern Oregon.

Joan’s website

Interview recorded 9/4/2011

Video and audio below. Audio also available as a Podcast.

12 thoughts on “086. Joan Tollifson

  1. wonderful interview.I think she is talking about the predetermined nature of existence which is what Ramesh taught.Tim would call her a neo-advaitian.Rick,I hope the One does not change your outlook such as to stop your interviews.I really appreciate them.

  2. Great interview! Good to see Rick finally climbing off his “anti-Neo-advaita” horse:-) I have been listening to BatGap for a few months now and have been waiting for the time Rick would finally get off this bashing and notice that there is value in the radical non-duality teachers’ approach too. I am always amused at how the NonDuality crowd loves to split NonDuality into Neo, Traditional and Balanced approaches to NonDuality – the ultimate victory of Maya (or illusion) over even Advaita! At least one guy seems to have gotten off that trap. Congratulations Rick!

  3. ” I am always amused at how the NonDuality crowd loves to split NonDuality into Neo, Traditional and Balanced approaches to NonDuality ” ~ CDN

    To say the least … maybe it should be re-named NonTrinity :]]

  4. Humour connects it all! I enjoyed the interview as well as the comments.. Where seriousness tends to seperate views up to fundamentalism, humour relieves it all with a great big laugh, or at least a grin or a smile. Not to take it all tooo seriously for me is the state where i can see the most.

  5. read the platform sutra… who got the bowl and robe?
    seems to be the same ‘battle’ going on.. what is, is. always changing, never changes..

  6. Thank you Joan and Rick. This was a very open, simply honest interview. So much noise out there, and all these choices for myself, and there isn’t one. You make me feel not crazy.

  7. read the platform sutra… who got the bowl and robe?

    the one who wrote it, obviously. follow the rabbit, not the bowl and robe

  8. What is said about God can be said about everything. Causation of existence proceeds from both source and result. To say “I am what I am” is true about all things, can be said by all things, and is. All the questions – who, what, when, where, why, how for, how come, etc. into infinity – are answered. It just is and it is everything. You are that.

  9. I understand her .. she is clear. It is all connected. She is very easy to understand.
    Rick have you ever interviewed anyone who has experienced Satori, without meditation?

Leave a Reply