499. Giovanni Dienstmann

Giovanni DienstmannGiovanni Dienstmann is a spiritual practitioner and teacher, and the creator of Live and Dare, one of the top five most visited meditation blogs on the planet. As an author, meditation coach and speaker, Giovanni helps people overcome anxiety and stress to live a more calm and centered life, through spiritually-inspired personal development work.

Since the age of 14, spirituality has been the center of his life. In his journey, he practiced over 9,000 hours of meditation, tried 70 different techniques, and nearly became a monk twice.

His spiritual thirst and eclectic approach led him to be formally initiated into the traditions of Zen Buddhism, Advaita Vedanta, Raja Yoga, and Mantra Yoga—by the masters Moriyama Roshi, Lakshamana Swami, Shivarudra Balayogi, and Nikhileshwarananda (respectively). In February 2010 he experienced a powerful awakening in the presence of Mooji in South India, and that has been a point of no return in his path.

Giovanni is the author of the best-selling book Practical Meditation: A Simple Step-by-Step Guide, which has been translated to 5 different languages and has popularly been called “The Meditation Bible”. As a coach, Giovanni’s clients range from stay at home parents to entrepreneurs, C-level executives and pro athletes.

In the field of meditation, he brings a contemporary and pragmatic approach to help both meditation novices and spiritual seekers alike. In his role as a spiritual writer, he balances deep reverence for traditional teachings with critical thinking and a comparative study of spiritual traditions.

To learn more about Giovanni and his work, visit LiveAndDare.com.

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded April 20, 2019.

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

487. Yogacharya Ellen Grace O’Brian

Yogacharya Ellen Grace O'BrianYogacharya Ellen Grace O’Brian is a meditation teacher, an award-winning poet, writer, and the spiritual director of the Center for Spiritual Enlightenment—a Kriya Yoga Meditation Center with headquarters in San Jose, California. She has taught Kriya Yoga nationally and internationally for more than three decades and has received many service awards, including the Mahatma Gandhi Award for the Promotion of Religious Pluralism. Ordained to teach in 1982 by Roy Eugene Davis, a direct disciple of Paramahansa Yogananda, her message is “engaged enlightenment” – an invitation to live an awakened, creatively inspired, and fulfilled life, now.

Along with her service as a meditation teacher and esteemed Yogacharya, Ellen Grace O’Brian is the Founder of Carry the Vision, a community nonviolence education project bringing meditation instruction to staff and children in schools, the prison population, and other segments of society. She is the founder and President of Meru Institute, providing healthy lifestyle education and leadership training in yoga studies, Ayurveda, and community service. She is host of The Yoga Hour, a weekly podcast with listeners in over 130 countries. Her latest book, The Jewel of Abundance: Finding Prosperity through the Ancient Wisdom of Yoga, was recently published by New World Library.

Other books:

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded January 21, 2019.

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

463. Kosi, 2nd Interview

Kosi SunyataKosi is a Direct Path Advaita Vedanta Satsang Teacher in the Śiva Kaśyapa Lineage. This teaching is powerful support for a dynamic shift in your consciousness from the fear, sadness, anger, anxiety, and frustration of your mind to the indescribable peace and happiness of your heart. Satsang with Kosi is an extremely potent initiation and transmission of the non-dual teaching of Sri Bhagavan Ramana Maharshi and her holiness Sri Amma Karunamayi.

She is the author of:

Discussion of this interview in the BatGap Community Facebook Group.

Interview recorded July 21, 2018.

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