605. Chelan Harkin

Chelan HarkinChelan Harkin has been channeling ecstatic poetry for years and has now published two books in the past seven months, Susceptible to Light and Let Us Dance!: The Stumble and Whirl With The Beloved. Her publishing journey has been mystical and transformational and filled with “prayer experiments” gone right. Chelan has regularly been compared to the great mystic poets, Rumi, Hafiz, and Rilke. She lives in a geographically spectacular region of Washington State, The Columbia Gorge, with her husband and two small children. In her poetry and in her life, Chelan continually invites the fumbling, suffering parts of our nature and our divinity to meet for tea in the heart, to have a great laugh, and share a big hug.

Some of the main points discussed in this conversation:

  • Chelan’s background and introduction to poetry by Hafiz. Her shift from effortful poetry to spontaneous “downloads”.
  • Chelan reads some of her favorite poems throughout the interview.
  • Chelan’s subjective experience when a poem starts to “come through” – a full-body tingle and a sense of urgency; a mingling of her spirit with something larger.
  • What the world might be like if everyone unlocked their full potential.
  • Chelan’s transformative experience with hypnosis as a process for the development of consciousness.
  • There is no joy in smallness. Chelan reads the poem ‘I AM TOO MUCH!’
  • The growth potential of marriage and parenthood.
  • Opening the heart and connecting with the divinity within us.
  • Sensitivity to ‘truth’ and addressing that which is not aligned with it.
  • Being able to have pain move through us without hurting us.
  • Chelan’s collaboration with Daniel Ladinsky.
  • Chelan’s upbringing in the Baháʼí faith. All people and religions are fundamentally united in a common source.
  • Chelan’s mystical experience and creative inspiration in a cell in Israel in which the founder of the Baháʼí faith was imprisoned.
  • Developing a harmonious relationship between knowledge and experience.
  • Chelan’s current and future projects.

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded July 3, 2021

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

604. Ilia Delio

Ilia DelioIlia Delio, OSF holds the Josephine C. Connelly Chair in Christian Theology at Villanova University. Her area of research is Science and Religion with interests in artificial intelligence, evolution, quantum physics, and the import of these for Christian doctrine and life. She holds a doctorate in Pharmacology from Rutgers University, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and a doctorate in Historical Theology from Fordham University. She is the author of over twenty books including Making All things New (Catholicity in an Evolving Universe), a finalist for the 2019 Michael Ramsey Prize and The Unbearable Wholeness of Being: God, Evolution, and the Power of Love, for which she won the 2014 Silver Nautilus Book Award and a 2014 Catholic Press Association Book Award in Faith and Science. Her latest book is Re-Enchanting the Earth: Why AI Needs Religion. She is the founder of the Center for Christogenesis, an online educational resource for promoting the vision of Teilhard de Chardin and, more broadly, the integration of science and religion in the 21st century.

Some of the main points discussed in this conversation.

  • What is God?
  • As we enter the mystery of God, language fails us, and the mystery grasps us all the more.
  • The mystery of God is the same mystery at the heart of physics.
  • There’s nothing outside the existence of God. God is existence itself.
  • God’s love is so infinite that there is nothing in this creation that’s un-loveable or unloved by God.
  • This is a finite creation. Wherever there are boundaries there is the possibility of suffering.  Suffering and death are part of the life cycle.
  • Reincarnation discussion. Are multiple incarnations sequential or simultaneous?
  • A deep experience of the mystery of God supports the freedom to speculate, dream, and imagine.
  • Science and religion need one another in order to fully understand the world.
  • The necessity and drawbacks of specialization and the complexification of knowledge.
  • If our hearts are grounded in holy mystery we become more fully God-like in our actions.
  • Humanity won’t have a sustainable future unless we renew the deeper dimension in our lives.
  • Cyborgs and transhumanism
  • The mutually beneficial relationship between spiritual and material technologies.
  • A profound spiritual transformation is underway.
  • Pierre Teilhard de Chardin’s idea of a new religion of the earth, retaining the wisdom of the past but creating something new for the future.
  • Wherever in the universe intelligent life exists, it will search for ultimate intelligence.
  • Intelligent design
  • The core energy of the universe – God – is love. The force that creates stars is the same force that manifests as love in humans.
  • Love is the highest knowledge. In the evening of life, we shall be judged on love alone.
  • Making love the lens through which we see all of life.
  • “The more I am in union with another, the more I am in touch with myself because it’s the core of myself that’s in union.”
  • What might the world be like if everyone were enlightened?

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded June 26, 2021.

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

603. Tara Springett

Tara SpringettFrom her teenage years onwards Tara has been deeply interested in personal growth and self-development and has dedicated her life to this quest.

Tara holds an M.A. in Education and has post-graduate qualifications in gestalt therapy, body awareness therapy, and transpersonal therapy. She is a fully qualified and licensed psychotherapist and counselor. Tara has worked as a drug counselor, counselor for adolescents, and general psychotherapist since 1988.

Tara has been a dedicated Buddhist practitioner since 1986. In 1997 she received encouragement from her Buddhist teacher Rigdzin Shikpo to teach meditation to others. In 2002 her Buddhist teacher Venerable Garchen Rinpoche also encouraged her to teach.

Tara has since taught ongoing meditation groups and combines Buddhist wisdom and her experience in counseling when assisting her clients with their personal growth, self-development, and improvement.

Since 2011 Tara has specialized in helping people suffering from kundalini syndrome.

Tara is the author of several self-help books. She has been featured in numerous publications and has appeared on various radio and television shows in Europe and the US. Tara is a regular contributor to beliefnet.com.

Tara (born 1960) lives in the beautiful countryside of Devon in England where she also works in her private counseling (Skype) practice together with her husband Nigel. In her free time, Tara loves to walk in nature, visit old-fashioned English tea rooms, and lavish many hours of work on her flower garden.

Websites

Books

Some points covered in this conversation:

  • Kundalini can be scary if you don’t know what it is: consciousness expansion.
  • ‘Higher consciousness healing’ to facilitate the process of kundalini awakening.
  • Kriyas (involuntary movements) may happen in the beginning phase of kundalini awakening. We shouldn’t repress or encourage them.
  • Traumas get stored in specific parts of the body. The physical body is permeated by an energy body, in which we feel our thoughts and emotions, including our ‘unconscious’ thoughts.
  • How different traumas reside in different chakras.
  • Kundalini is a subtle psycho-spiritual process.
  • Four levels of spiritual practice.
  • For balanced development, it’s important to continue working with the chakras, particularly the lower ones, even after reaching a high state of consciousness.
  • The importance of infusing bliss into all the chakras and purging them of negativity.
  • The foundational importance of morality and ‘loving kindnesses.’
  • Being authentic and honest, even if the world doesn’t appreciate it.
  • According to Buddhism, evolution continues on subtler levels after enlightenment.
  • Deification in Tibetan Buddhism.
  • Mental health issues and kundalini symptoms can coexist.
  • Kundalini awakenings are always accompanied by a strong spiritual motivation.
  • The importance of regular routines.
  • It’s extremely rare for kundalini to cause mental health issues, and only then if one has a disposition for that.
  • Psychedelic drugs can cause problematic kundalini awakenings.
  • The importance of preparedness before pursuing advanced teachings.
  • Love and forgiveness indicate you’re on the right path.
  • Profound inner changes usually result in corresponding changes in outer life.
  •  A ‘tantric relationship’ can accelerate your mutual development.
  • Long retreats vs. daily practice.
  • The middle path between extremes: surrender vs. control, caution vs. trust, rational thinking vs. intuition, judging vs. accepting.
  • Kundalini awakenings are conducive to good health.
  • A kundalini awakening begun in a past life can continue in this one.
  • Nine stages of consciousness.

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded June 19, 2021.

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