381. Marianne Williamson

Marianne WilliamsonMarianne Williamson is an internationally acclaimed spiritual author and lecturer. Marianne has been a popular guest on television programs such as Oprah, Larry King Live, Good Morning America, Charlie Rose & Bill Maher. Seven of her twelve published books have been New York Times Best Sellers. Four of these have been #1. The mega best seller A Return to Love is considered a must-read of The New Spirituality. A paragraph from that book, beginning “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure…” is considered an anthem for a contemporary generation of seekers.

Sister GiantMarianne is the founder of Sister Giant, an annual conference dedicated to forging a deeper conversation about what is happening in America today – and what we can do to change it. This year’s conference is coming up February 2-4 in Washington, DC. Speakers include Senator Bernie Sanders (keynote), Thom Hartmann, Jean Houston, Robert Thurman, and many more. The event will be livestreamed.

Marianne’s other books include:

Marianne is a native of Houston, Texas. In 1989, she founded Project Angel Food, a meals-on-wheels program that serves homebound people with AIDS in the Los Angeles area. To date, Project Angel Food has served over 10 million meals.  Marianne also co-founded the Peace Alliance. And she serves on the Board of Directors of the RESULTS organization, working to end the worst ravages of hunger and poverty throughout the world.

According to Time magazine, “Yoga, the Cabala and Marianne Williamson have been taken up by those seeking a relationship with God that is not strictly tethered to Christianity.”

Website: marianne.com

Marianne gives weekly talks in New York City, based on A Course in Miracles … every Tuesday night at 7:30PM, at Marble Collegiate Church, Fifth Avenue and West 29th Street. The talks are Live Streamed and so are available to everyone, everywhere. Register at marianne.com.

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

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380. Shunyamurti

ShunyamurtiShunyamurti is the founder of the Sat Yoga Ashram, located in the misty mountains of southern Costa Rica. The ashram includes a wisdom school (Sat Yoga Institute), a research and teaching division on creating self-sustaining spiritual communities (Premaculture), a new approach to healing and transformation (Atmanology), and a meditative retreat center open to people from all over the world. Its mission is to accelerate the transfiguration of human consciousness and contribute to the spiritual renaissance that is fermenting now on our planet.

Shunya became aware of yoga at an early age and was immediately drawn to it. He also wrote poetry, which became a meditative process of discovering from where words and thoughts arose in consciousness. He studied many forms of yoga, including classical Ashtanga Yoga (guided by Baba Hari Dass), spent ten years in a formal Raja Yoga monastic order, as well as intense practice of Buddhist and Taoist yoga, Kashmir Shaivite tantra, Sufi and Christian contemplative prayer, and Kabbalah. He integrated quantum physics, systems and complexity theory, and the non-physical dimension of martial arts into his approach. He underwent initiation into shamanism, including the use of entheogens. Shunya has practiced law, was an investigative journalist and foreign correspondent, a political scientist, earned degrees in philosophy, drama, and psychology, practiced hypnotherapy (and all its permutations, including past life regression), Jungian dreamwork and Lacanian psychoanalysis.

Shunyamurti’s life-long quest for truth and the power of healing and transformation has brought about a deep understanding of the structure and dynamics of the ego, the latent capacities of the soul, and the radiant healing power of the Supreme Real, the One Self. He now functions as spiritual guide, retreat leader, and yogic research director of the Sat Yoga Ashram.

Website: satyogainstitute.org

Interview recorded 12/28/2016

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

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379. Rick Archer at Berkeley Open Circle Center

Rick ArcherI was hesitant to put this up, because there’s more than enough of me on this site, but a few kind friends encouraged me to, so here it is. I gave this talk at the Open Circle Center in Berkeley, California on October 24, 2016. Points discussed include:

  • “Can knowledge of nonduality be scientifically understood, that is, systematically organized, tested, explained, and predicted? Science has not devised instruments capable of detecting the nondual nature of ultimate reality, but spiritual traditions discuss it extensively, and numerous followers of these traditions (and of no traditions) claim to have experienced it as their essential nature. This experience is commonly termed “awakening” or “enlightenment”.
  • Is there a “scientific” consensus among these people? Are they referring to the same thing? Is there just one awakening, or are there many degrees of it? Buddhist, Hindu, and Christian mystical traditions tend to assert the latter. If there are many degrees or stages of awakening, do they culminate in an ultimate stage we might term “enlightenment”, or is there no ultimate? When one’s essential nature has been clearly and abidingly realized, has one reached a terminus, or do refinement, clarification, and other facets of development continue?
  • If we see spiritual development as never-ending, will we be forever chasing the dangling carrot, or can we rest in our true nature, the seeking energy having dropped off, and yet acknowledge that compared with what might be possible, we are relative beginners?
  • Many spiritual teachers make statements such as “This is it. You are That which you are seeking. Realize this, and you are finished.” Is such advice helpful, or does it short-change spiritual aspirants?”
  • How might spirituality benefit from science, and vice versa?
  • The consequences of science meddling with Laws of Nature without understanding the field in which they reside.
  • The importance of understanding on the spiritual path.
  • The seeming epidemic of spontaneous awakenings.

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

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378. Lawrence Edwards

Lawrence EdwardsLawrence Edwards, PhD, BCN Senior Fellow, LMHC has practiced and taught meditation for over 40 years. He is the Founder and Director of The Anam Cara Meditation Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to teaching meditative practices from a variety of traditions. The mission of the Anam Cara Foundation is to make meditation instruction available to everyone. Lawrence has offered thousands of free meditation programs at universities, hospitals, churches, meditation centers, yoga centers, hospice groups, prisons and more.

Dr. Edwards maintains a clinical practice in Armonk, NY, offering Optimal Mind® Training, transpersonal psychotherapy, spiritual mentoring, biofeedback, neurofeedback, hypnosis, peak performance training, and meditation training. He also works with people interested in spiritual growth, dream work and Kundalini processes. He has served as President of the Kundalini Research Network since 2006 and is recognized around the world for his wisdom and skill in working with Kundalini.

Dr. Edwards has studied and practiced in the Kundalini yoga tradition, Tibetan Buddhist and Huichol Indian shamanic traditions. These rich reservoirs of wisdom have expanded and deepened the transpersonal and Jungian psychological perspectives of his professional training. His mystical experiences began as a young child and have continued throughout his life. They have been the real guiding force behind his studies and training. His profound experience of the Divine present in everyone, at all times, and in all places has lead him to a life of service in teaching and supporting others on their journeys into the Divine.

Websites:

Books:

Interview conducted 12/17/2016

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377. Regina Dawn Akers

Regina Dawn AkersRegina Dawn Akers has been sharing spiritual teachings, organizing retreats and leading pilgrimages to holy sites in Israel and India since 2005. She’s published two books: “Holy Spirit’s Interpretation of the New Testament: A Course in Understanding and Acceptance” (NTI) and “The Teachings of Inner Ramana”. Her third book “Thoughts of Awakening: 365 Thoughts for Daily Contemplation” is provided as a free e-book. Each of these books came to Regina from within through her willingness to be their scribe, student and teacher. She is a living model of their teachings and a clear channel of the deeper meaning that lies hidden beyond the written word.

Regina shares insightful and consistent clarity using a variety of spiritual teachings as pointers. She is the founder of Awakening Together, a worldwide online spiritual assembly dedicated to helping people become self-reliant with inner spiritual wisdom. Awakening Together uses the teachings of many spiritual traditions to point toward one truth, one true Self, which lies peacefully within each of us. Regina is the author of Awakening Together’s 2-year Minister Preparation Program (MPP), which is a contemplative study of Truth through teachings from Hinduism, Buddhism, Sufism, Kabbalah, the Tao Te Ching, A Course in Miracles, the New Testament, and contemporary masters including Ramana Maharshi and Nisargadatta Maharaj.

When she is not traveling, Regina lives a quiet life in Pueblo, Colorado. She enjoys spending time with her family, her dog and few close friends. Many of Regina’s teachings are available freely online at reginadawnakers.com. She also invites everyone to enjoy the inspiration and online spiritual community provided through awakening-together.org.

Written Books

Audio Books

Interview recorded 12/10/2016

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