Gillian Ross Transcript

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Gillian Ross Interview

Rick Archer: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer, Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of interviews with spiritually Awakening people. I’ve done over 500 of them now. And if this is new to you, and you’d like to check out previous ones, please go to Bat gap. And look under the past interviews menu, where you’ll see them all organized in various ways. This program or this Project is made possible by the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it, and would like to support it, there is a PayPal button on every page of And we give thanks to those who have supported it. My guest today is Julian Ross. Julian is down in New South Wales, Australia, which is not too far from Sydney, I guess. And I just finished reading her book consciousness versus catastrophe, and are almost finished some little bits I haven’t read yet. And if I would say that if I had the talent and the time to write a book, I would want to write a book like this, because it’s beautifully written. And it really encapsulates everything, my whole view of the way things work. And so I think Julian and I are going to have an interesting conversation, because we’re really on the same page. As far as the universe and spirituality and all such subjects. We could probably talk for many, many hours, but we’ll try to limit it to about two. Let’s see. One thing I just wanted to say is, you know, this this week, for those of you who are watching this, maybe years later, there’s been in the news, the story of the Amazon rainforest burning at an unprecedented rate. And there’s something about that event that kind of strikes me as being similar but in a negative way to the Earthrise photo that William Anders took on the Apollo eight mission Mission to the Moon, it’s it’s seems to me that it’s kind of shaking people up in a way that that moonshot photo inspired people globally, we sort of feel that the crisis that we’re in is reaching a tipping point. And coincidentally, not maybe not coincidentally, there’s all these stories in the news about how teenagers are destroying their lungs with vaping. And as such, there’s some connection there between the people destroying their lungs and the lungs of the earth being destroyed. And this is the sort of catastrophe that Jillian alludes to in her book. And the title consciousness versus catastrophe implies that consciousness is the antidote to catastrophe, if it could be sufficiently enlivened or awakened in people and people individually and collectively, would you say Gillian, that’s a good synopsis of what the book is about in a sentence or two?

Gillian Ross: Well, first of all, let me congratulate you on your image of the Amazon, Taurus burning and the significance of that, I think that’s a wonderful way of looking at it. I do hope that it, it does, as you say, very dramatic, graphic image of what we’re doing to the planet, much more dramatic, for example, than the fire in the notre dam Cathedral, which also caused people across the planet. So yes, I resonate with what you’re saying, they’re totally, I just, yeah, I see my book really is an introduction to the new story of evolution of spirituality, which I know we’re going to be talking about. But given that you have, you know, I think many very erudite spiritual practitioners in your audience, I just wanted to say to begin with that I do not see myself as being a scholar of any particular spiritual tradition, or lineage, nor do I have conversations with God or any higher being, which is who is explained to me in some way, what is happening on planet Earth. But what I do feel, in fact, you know, I love this expression from Andrew Harvey to rest in the creative mystery of uncertainty. And that’s where I’m quite happy to be in terms of my spiritual on spiritual matters. But I do feel very positive very certain that at this time in human history, we need a new story, a new story that will help us to evolve to a more connected, compassionate level of consciousness and I’ll quote, he got taller here, because he’s such a respected, you know, awakened, contemporary, Mystic spiritual practitioner, when he said that at this time in our history, we have to face the stark reality that we must evolve or die. And I feel this new story that we’re going to be talking about is needed to help us to evolve to this new level of consciousness. It’s a part of what we can see as being a revolution in consciousness across the planet. And you and I talking here, your your, your BatGap platform is a part of that consciousness revolution, which is really very exciting. And it’s, it’s been said to be more significant than Neolithic Revolution, you know, when we invented agriculture, or the scientific revolution, the Copernican revolution, or even the scientific revolution, because our survival depends on it. So really, really privileged and honored to be here with you, Rick, to be talking about our consciousness revolution, and our new story of evolutionary spirituality. And I feel qualified to do that, because it’s been inspiring for me, for over two decades now. I came across evolutionary spirituality when he was beginning to come up in the mid 90s. With people we will be talking about Brian Swimme, Jean Houston, Joseph Campbell, Andrew Cohen, et cetera. And then the shift network. And also it resonates with my own mystical experience, or my scientific knowledge.

Rick Archer: And what you just said about, I’m sorry, go ahead.

Gillian Ross: I’m just gonna say, and I’ve shared all of that in the book, right?

Rick Archer: Yeah, I love this book, you know, that bookshelf that people see behind me is the extent of the bookshelves in our house. That’s it. And so I can’t keep a lot of books, we don’t have a really big house. But occasionally, I come across a book that I like so much that I want to keep, and yours is going to be one of them. And part of the reason is also that it just has all these beautiful quotes all the way through it from various people, some of the ones you just mentioned, and many others. And that in itself is a great resource that just want to address the thing you said about this consciousness revolution being even more significant than the Copernican revolution and the scientific revolution and so on. And I think one way of understanding why it is, is that it it’s the, it’s a shift the shift of a deeper paradigm. It’s the shift of the ultimate paradigm, really, because the whole understanding of consciousness has been upside down, it’s been considered largely by most people to be just a product of brain functioning, whereas in fact, it’s the ultimate reality. And so there can be no paradigm more deep than the experience and understanding of consciousness as the foundation of the universe, and is perhaps even the sum total of the universe, we can get onto that. And so if, you know, if we could get onto that understanding on mass as as a species, then the impact of that should be tremendous. And we can talk about why that upside down sort of thinking has resulted in all the damage that is being inflicted on the planet effect. May we get into that right now, if you want to?

Gillian Ross: Well, it’s really it’s a transition, isn’t it? From a dead University, we’re living universe. You know that the the essence of the new story of evolutionary spiritual spirituality is the way we’re not this absurd story of being an accidental speck of you know, an isolated consciousness that’s emerged somehow have evolved from a conglomeration of dead matter, immodest and absurd story, you know, we, we we are we are flowering human consciousness, a flowering a blossoming of a living, evolving, purposeful, creative, divine mystery, which is the universe. You know, this is our new story. It connects mysticism it brings it brings sentience into the universe. It brings sentience into the scientific story of Big History, which is an amazing story. I mean, it’s been said that the, the discovery of the evolution of the universe has been the, the path of the the pinnacle of the scientific enterprise, you know, to bring forth a story of evolution. And we could go into the O’Brien swim example to to get a handle on this, which you often speak of, that if you think about the evolution of the universe. Think about hydrogen gas, you know, colorless, colorless gas, which was one of the first elements to emerge after the flaring forth of energy we call the Big Bang by and swim says you know, that’s a Miss Miss naming of it. It’s not a big bang and you think shrapnel it’s not like that it’s an flaring forth of divine energy, you know. And in that early, early stages of that we had the formation of hydrogen gas now just take hydrogen gas is colorless, odorless gas, and leave it alone for 13 point 8 billion years, and it becomes rosebushes, giraffes and human beings. And the music of Bach and Beethoven and so on. I mean, that’s extraordinary to get a handle on that is like a mystical experience what is going on? So, can I go on with this? This, Rick, this, what this implies to me in terms of the story of evolution of spirituality,

Rick Archer: it could give you a little, a little catalyst here, which is a quote from David Abram that I pulled from your book, in which he says this sentence was never our private possession. We live immersed in intelligence, enveloped and informed by our creativity we cannot fathom. Right? Take it from there.

Gillian Ross: Yeah, yeah, beautiful. So in a story of evolution, spit it out, or what I prefer to call evolutionary mysticism. We’re understanding that there is a driving force behind this cosmic drama of evolution, which I think Andrew Cohn invented the term evolutionary impulse, the impulse of love, which is moving us towards greater manifestations of consciousness, complexity of goodness, truth and beauty, in some very mysterious way. But here’s the thing with this is the most beautiful aspect of our stories, is understanding that this time in history, human consciousness is now capable of actually bringing that divine intelligence, that evolutionary impulse into creation consciously, through our own being. I don’t think I’ve expressed that well enough, but that’s, or to our story. And that’s amazing, reminds me of the Taoist expression, which I love which is flowing in the current of the eternal Tao, we’re being invited the Dow being this intelligence of the universe, which is both within the universe and beyond the universe that you panentheism, which we can talk about, but the notion that that is now calling or yearning or point, you know, wanting to express itself through us or become conscious of its own self through us, is stunning. And it’s a huge responsibility to awaken to that, and guide the next stage of human evolution in that way. Because, you know, it’s now human consciousness, that is, that is the driving force of evolution on planet earth, there isn’t a single atom on the planet, that it’s not being impacted upon by our consciousness and our behavior. And we therefore have to lift it to a level where, you know, we can, we can evolve the next stage of human planet, not destroy it, which we’re currently doing from the level of the separate ego. Yeah, the old story, as it were, the old paradigm is what is destroying the planet, to put it very bluntly. So this is an awesome responsibility to receive this to this consciousness. And our own being implies a whole new sense of self of who we are, which transcends the separate ego and the fear driven, you know, contracting energies of ego. So I’m sure we’re going to talk about this new sense of self, which comes out of this new story. And it’s all very beautiful and inspiring, and so much needed. This is the other point that we’re in this critical point in human evolution in human history, where we so need to realize this new story and embody it, feel it in our marrowbone. And that’s our mystical Renaissance. Yeah.

Rick Archer: I’ll just throw in another quote here. Before making a comment. This is also pulled from your book, it’s by physicist Freeman Dyson. He says consciousness is not just a passive epiphenomenon carried along by the chemical events in our brains, but as an active agent, forcing the molecular complexes to make choices between one quantum state and another. In other words, mind is already inherent in every electron. And Dyson also was responsible for the quote that the likelihood that, you know, this beautiful complex world that we live in, could have happened by chance is about as likely as you know, a tornado going through a junkyard and and rearranging all the bits of matter in the junkyard into a 747. So absolutely, yeah. So what you were saying earlier about, you know, Brian swims code about hydrogen becoming giraffes and rose bushes and opera, and so on and so forth. To me, that like shouts out at us, that, I mean, it’s like glaringly obvious, that intelligence is inherent in every little thing. And then, in fact, perhaps we could even say that everything is intelligence, and that it has an agenda. So so to speak, you’re talking about, you know, getting to the point where, you know, it can express itself through human life and reflect upon itself and talk about itself and so on and so forth. It seems to me that if the universe has an agenda, it’s that the, it’s the move toward greater and greater complexity so that more and more complex forms can be can arise, which can more more and more fully embody that innate intelligence. that permeates everything as a living reality, not just as a transcendent reality.

Gillian Ross: Oh, definitely. This is a whole. Yes. You know, there’s a lovely quote from the Dalai Lama. I think he said, Well, Andrew Harvey quotes from his saying when he gave him I asked him what is the meaning of life? And he replied, The meaning of life is to embody the transcendent the purpose of life is to embody the transcendent, or embody this evolutionary impulse, which is both transcendent and within within creation, which is, which in itself is something we can talk about what that means to feel, to feel the lifeforce to feel that the aliveness of the universe is terribly necessary transition for so necessary reconnection that we have to make before we can move into this high level of consciousness is to reconnect with our earthly roots. So a nice quote from DH Lawrence, which is in my book, too, about the fact that, you know, in our western, in the old story of Western culture, we have, we have pulled humanity, we’ve pulled ourselves up from our roots, and how can we possibly expect to flourish in a, in a vase or a civilized vase on the table, that we need to reconnect with our roots in a living planet and a living Earth and feel guileless. But we do more than that, in doing that, we then begin to connect with the transcendent. So it’s both it’s, it’s growing up, and it’s a committed to growing down a milk jam, you know, the young unit, the Neo union, James Hillman talked about is going down rather than going up, because we’re meant to our roots are down in the earth, but we’re meant to, you know, turn the tree of life upside down and see the roots above. And the blossoming down here is one aspect of it, but also we have to have our roots beneath and our blossoming coming up. So it’s both. That’s the tantric understanding, isn’t it? The enemy energies of transformation arising, ascending energies, and also descending energies. So I suppose what I’m trying to say, this is not what Ken Wilber warned about this, in, in reconnecting with our animism, or, you know, animating the the natural world again, in the way, of course, we were animistic, for over 90% of our of our history of our cultural history. It’s only recently that we have dehydrated or de sacralized, the natural world, it’s a curious, curious consequence of our particular Western history. But it the the problem is, or the the solution is not to regress back to primitive animism, or to, you know, absorption in the natural world. But to engage with that living reality, in a conscious way, if that makes sense. It’s like that evolution from pre personal to personal to transpersonal.

Rick Archer: Yes, that does make sense. I just want to re emphasize something we kind of started with, which we’ve, which, which I think would be really helpful to people to be clear about this. If this is true, and that is that, you know, all the problems in the world, which seems so dire, and insoluble, and, you know, life threatening, our reflections are manifestations of the collective consciousness, which and the collective consciousness is determined by the individual consciousness of all the billions of people that make up the world. So, you know, we look for political solutions, and we look for economic solutions, and technological solutions, and all those things. And all those things are necessary. They all have their place on their own, in their own domains, on their own levels. But they don’t go deep enough. And they can’t go deep enough, because even those solutions and systems are manifestations are reflections of the consciousness of the people who create and administer them. So what really has to happen is that collective consciousness has to be enlivened or awakened in a very fundamental way through its enlivened mentor awakening in large numbers of individuals. And, and then, you know, it’s kind of like I’ve used the analogy of a forest which is having a hard time weathering and die, because the ground has gotten deficient and the plants aren’t getting enough nourishment. Consciousness is like the ground. And if that can be awakened or enlivened in enough people, then the whole ground of collective consciousness will be more rich and nourishing, and all sorts of creativity and cooperation and, you know, less greed and selfishness and you know, blind blindness and, and all that will will just dissipate. Anyway, that may sound idealistic, but I think that’s the only thing that’s going to do it.

Gillian Ross: Well, the thing is, Vic, you know that There’s the driving, that the, the consciousness in the driving seat of evolution at the moment that is taking us into an abyss of extinction. You know, there’s this understanding that we’re causing the sixth grade mass extinction on the planet. And we’ve got the Amazon, forest burning, etc, etc. The consciousness is driving the whole thing, the moment it’s the separate ego, the illusory sense of a separate self. And it’s embedded in a story of separation, separation from each other separation from the natural world, and perhaps most tragically, of all, separate from our own inner depths. There’s a lovely quote from John O’Donoghue, on that the Irish poet who of course, you know, wrote so beautifully and poetically, about the tragedy of our disconnect from the archetypal and mythic realms of the unconscious and, and of of our connection with the living with the Living Universe, when he said that our neon times have evaded and neglected the depth, the interior realms, in favor of the ghostly realms of cyberspace in the world has become reduced to an intense, but transient frontispiece what does it for, you know, from for forefront for Yeah, yeah, facade, maybe something like that. Yes. Intense, but Chancen foreground foreground, that was the word he used. And it reminded me of Ken Wilber saying that we’ve moved into flatland, you know. And so it’s not surprising. We’ve got all these problems. Charles Eisenstein talks beautifully, you know, he said, other great writer on this whole news story, I’m sure you’ve interviewed him at some stage, he speaks of us, because of the separate self, we’re in war mode, it’s always us versus them in some way or other, you know, if we have a problem, we have to combat destroy, or, you know, control the enemy. We see that pervading our whole western culture, which of course, it’s now virtually global culture. And it’s a disaster, we have to change the story to one of cooperation, as you said, and nourish cooperation, and a whole new way of being basically, and understanding ourselves as human beings. And that’s where our story of evolutionary spirituality, I think, is so important. Because it awakens, the mystic enters into the stands that we’re all mystics at heart, I really believe that we need a mystical Renaissance wick to take us out of this incredibly contracting, fear driven consciousness of ego.

Rick Archer: Yeah, I do too. And, and a lot of people are getting that news story. It’s not you don’t hear it much on the six o’clock news. But, you know, if you go to the Bioneers conference, or if you listen to Greta Thunberg, or, you know, there’s all kinds of wonderful people who are, you know, speaking out in a new way. And, you know, it might seem like, they’re just sort of like, you know, shouting in a hurricane, and being drowned out by all the noise. But I think that, you know, I’ve always felt that if you can work at a more fundamental level, you have more leverage, then if you work at a symptomatic level, and these people are sort of learning how to operate at a more fundamental level, and thereby, even though they may have, the smaller a number, their impact can be, you know, much greater than, than their numbers.

Gillian Ross: Oh, absolutely. That’s our hope, you know, that, you know, a few of us will make, well, everything, this time, at this critical time, we can talk about phase transitions and how inputs of energy, you know, in chaos theory, slightest bit of energy, when we’re when we’re unstable, can can affect the outcome. And it’s called the butterfly effect, you know, that we’re in Butterfly Effect time, you know, everything we do matters, and just being kind to someone in the street, and so on and so forth, can have reverberations at this critical time that we can’t, can have find too hard to imagine. But also, Rick, my part of the story is that what is essential in this country transformation, is a connection with our divine source. This is what I mean about the mystical Renaissance, we no longer solve our problems from the level of the egoic, rational mind, we’ve isolated this rational mind, we think, you know, the whole movement of humanism has been the belief that somehow we can, we can solve everything through this amazing conceptual brain of ours. And it is remarkable, there’s no doubt about it. But there’s a lovely quote from Ram Dass where he says the intellect is has been the power tool of our separation. The Awakened compassionate heart is the gateway to our unity. So you know, we don’t destroy the intellect, it becomes a tool of that compassionate heart. And that’s, that’s where we were needing to go and where we are going and you say,

Rick Archer: before we started recording, we were talking about people who have lopsided development. You know, Ken Wilber his lines of development idea where certain things can be very developed, such as the intellect and other things, quite other aspects such as the heart quite stunted. And we’re talking about our kind of our definition of enlightenment if we were used to use the word, which would be that there’s a holistic development about a more balanced development and flowering and flourishing of all these different faculties with consciousness that their basis and as their primary nutrient. So

Gillian Ross: yeah, yeah, go ahead. Yeah. So well, I just gotta say that brings in the question of shadow work, you know, if we’re going to embody the transcendent, if we’re going to allow this Divine Will to replace our little will, not my will. But Thy will be done, then we have to do we have to do work on ourselves. There’s no shortage of psychotherapists. There’s no shortage of, you know, Shadow Work options given to us now, at this critical time, it says that the universe has provided us with so that we can clear our vessel and clear it and clean it and empty it to be a vessel for the divine. So, so yes, indeed. And we see so often with with that there can be a lopsided evolution. But I call that it’s not all together and authentic connection with the divine, there’s certainly not a full embodiment of the transcendent. But I entirely agree, I do avoid the word enlightenment, I don’t, there is a clearly no ceiling to our evolution, we are just a kindergarten stage when it comes to consciousness. We’re just a baby stage when it comes to our understanding of consciousness, where this the universe is now presenting us on planet Earth with this explosion of energy, which is to move into the area of consciousness, we’ve been through matter, we’ve been for the biosphere, we’re now into consciousness, what that means, you know, and and to see it as being primary and matter as the epiphenomenon as it were. So where were we what were these things?

Rick Archer: Keep just keep bouncing back and forth. But um, we don’t mean to imply by saying that the intellect has been running roughshod over the world, and that we need to, you know, land in the heart that we should dismantle the whole scientific enterprise or any such thing. Oh, yeah. It just needs to who was it that? Well, I don’t know if this totally relates. But it’s a nice illustration. Thoreau said, you know, if you’ve been building castles in the air, there’s no problem with that. That’s where they belong, just put foundations under them. And now like, yeah, here’s a nice little quote from Charles Eisenstein, since you’re just talking about him, gazing through the lens of accumulated scientific knowledge at a body or a cell, when we really get its complexity and orchestration, its order and its beauty, the perfect mesh of levels and systems than we know we are in the presence of a miracle, or is the only authentic response, science has brought us to a place where we can walk in living off of the ongoing miracle that is existence. So as you know, as opposed to bad mouthing science are trashing science where we’re praising it as something which has brought us to a point where we can actually appreciate the beauty of nature and and even the Divinity inherent in the in nature, in a way which three 400 years ago, people didn’t have the the tools to do.

Gillian Ross: Absolutely. That’s That’s the paradox. Yes, indeed. I mean, the Dalai Lama, bless him has also said, you know that a wondrous future for humanity is possible. If we can only unite the discoveries of 21st century science with the ancient, intuitive, mystical understandings of the true nature of reality. And that’s what our new store is doing. Yeah, it’s what it’s doing. Beautiful. And as far as imbalances concerned, Rick, you know, I mean, it really is alarming. I came across a lovely quote the other day, I don’t know who it was from saying that partake Palaeolithic Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and godlike technology and put them in a blender and you’ve got problems. You know, that really?

Rick Archer: Yeah, I think I read that on your website or someplace. But say it again,

Gillian Ross: that pallial It put Palaeolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and godlike technology into a blender and you’ve got problems. And that’s really what we’re doing with our western what we have been doing with Western consciousness before the current, you know, that’s why we need a consciousness revolution. I mean, the other alarming thing is that we have all this technology, which can give us the immense power, you know, atomic bombs or hydrogen bombs or drones, all this incredibly destructive weapon we now have, it’s coming out of quantum technology, quantum understanding, and yet in our consciousness, we’re still you know, virtually back in the stone age, or at least in Newtonian atoms in the void, you know, mode of consciousness. So there’s an imbalance there. So these, this, this extraordinary power is being used by males mainly, of course, who are still in a Newtonian or Palaeolithic level of consciousness. It’s it’s really scary. We have to bring up our wisdom, you have to start, you know, evolving our wisdom, as well as our knowledge. Yeah. Yeah. And you have to start being schools of wisdom and not just factories of knowledge.

Rick Archer: Yeah, right. Or factories of commerce, where you learn a skill that you can sit in a cubicle and do until you’re too old to do it.

Gillian Ross: Exactly. It’s Oh, darling. Yes, exactly. Yeah, yeah. I mean, it’s Brian Swimme. Project, you know, what do we do? We, we learn skills, as you say, and we go to work to earn money, despise stuff that we don’t really need? Yeah.

Rick Archer: This thing about the Newtonian worldview that you just mentioned, I think what you’re implying, if we can embellish it a bit is that, you know, the, the universe is story, the world is still regarded by most people as stuff, material stuff, you know, and the universe is sort of a, a random billiard ball mechanism, that it has no sort of intrinsic intelligence or meaning or purpose or anything else. And that we’re just some biological robots, you know, operating in this random meaningless universe. In fact, there’s a sort of multiverse theory that some such people come up with, to, to explain away the apparent evolution of order in this universe that Brian Swimme alluded to, with that hydrogen to to giraffes metaphor, and that is that there’s an infinite number of universes, and we just happen to have lucked out and and found ourselves in the one of umpteen gazillion that, by random chance, has, has worked out to be orderly, and to have, you know, structures arise out of chaos. And I think you said in your book that you quoted some scientists as saying, the chance of even a single proton evolving in 13 Point 8 billion years, is pretty slim, much less all the complexity that we actually have. So, I don’t know, it’s absurd that the extent to which materials will go to defend their position.

Gillian Ross: Well, you know, we have the anthropic principle don’t mean I think the multiverse theory is, is a real cop out in terms of, you know, scientists to put that forward. Because the fact is, we know now that the universe is incredibly finely tuned to the evolution of human consciousness. So the evolution of life, etc. And as you’ve pointed out, in lots of your interviews, you know, we’ve got billions, trillions of planets across the universe, now we know of, and that life would be sprouting up all over the place, I’m sure that many experiments in consciousness, that’s one of my reasons why we don’t fuck you here. And we know we evolved consciousness the way the universe invites us to. Because it’s finely tuned to do so. And multi universes, whatever, let’s just focus on our beautiful universe here. And what it’s bringing forth for us to do at this point in time, which is connect to our divine source, bring forth a new story of pantheism and get on with, you know, with putting into reverse all the terrible things we’ve done to our lovely planet. Yeah. Yeah, I just thinking that sense of a sacred again, we’ve just this, this, it’s so important to reconnect with a sense of the sacred both around ourselves and around the Living Universe. That’s what we’ve lost the sacred, to bow to the mystery of it all.

Rick Archer: The thing about the universe being finely tuned, there’s something that they understand about 200 different variables, and who knows, they may be more than any one of which, if they were just a fraction of a percent off, we wouldn’t have had a universe or we wouldn’t have had life in a universe such as you know, the strength of gravity or various other things. So, the notion that the universe is random or accidental is absurd. And it really seems that there is some intelligence, which has, has been responsible for the universe being this amazing mechanism, that it is, and capable of giving rise to life through which again, consciousness or that intelligence, which is unbounded, invest, can be consciously appreciated and lived through a body

Gillian Ross: and also wake as all the mystics have revealed to us and we could talk about the mystics and sages of the past that its essence is love. And I like to see these the mystics and sages This is the consciousness that we’re now being called to embody. You know, it’s not just the prerogative of the saint Saint sage the anymore it’s our birthright to be this this higher this more benign level of consciousness. And I don’t know what I’m going to say now then I’ve lost it.

Rick Archer: But anyway, anybody

Gillian Ross: Yes, exactly. And that these, these mystics of the past, and the extraordinary beams of the past are like the cells, the first cells in the emergence of the biosphere, you know, first of all the that first living cell was enormously fragile, very sensitive to heat and so on cold, but finally reproduced enough to bring itself into being and flourishes, all the living, you know, life on planet Earth, amazing how one living cell became all of that. So in a sense, those mystics and sages of the past have been like the in the the initial cells of this new consciousness, which are now being invited to proliferate. Another lovely example from Barbara Marx Hubbard is that of the the butterfly emerging from the cocoon of the caterpillar, where the so first of all, there are these imaginal cells, you know, that the caterpillar, his immune system destroys, doesn’t like them, it doesn’t want to be this, it doesn’t want to evolve. But then finally, they proliferate to such an extent that the caterpillar gives up, and the new cells eat the caterpillar, I presume, and then emerges the butterfly. So you know, it’s a beautiful metaphor for where we are at the moment in this explosion of a new consciousness and a new humanity.

Rick Archer: Yeah, and one thing that the caterpillar metaphoric brings to mind is that, you know, that the caterpillar basically turns to mush before a butterfly, and before the bush rearranges itself, and a butterfly is formed. And so I wonder, to what extent our, our society, our world is going to turn to mush before something emerges. You know, because some people feel like it’s really touching go and it’s not necessarily a foregone conclusion that we’re going to survive this this catastrophe that we’re, that’s becoming more and more evident. When you think about that.

Gillian Ross: I like the like the extrapolation of the metaphor darlin, yes, the most indeed. Because I sometimes think that I should have called the book consciousness and catastrophe. Now it’s a read a quote from some well informed person the other day on climate science, saying that the breakdown of our political systems or social structure is inevitable. ensuing chaos or catastrophe is probable, and extinction is possible. That’s very sobering. Indeed. So yes, I think it’s inevitable. We can’t just tinker at the edges, there has to be some major deconstruction. And it’s going to be enormously challenging for us. Yes.

Rick Archer: I mean, look, look at the mess. That is Syria, Syria, the situation in Syria was arguably caused by climate change, there was a severe drought, that it was pretty unprecedented. All the farmers came into the cities because they couldn’t farm. And then the government couldn’t handle this influx of people. And so social chaos broke out. They’ve pretty much destroyed the country. And everybody has been trying to emigrate to Europe. And it’s just but that’s just a tiny little place compared to the whole world. What if sea levels rise 20 feet, you know, and hundreds of millions of people who live in coastal cities are going to have to move and at the same time, there’s droughts in the interior and so on. And it’s going to make Syria look like a picnic.

Gillian Ross: We think we have a refugee problem now. And of course, we’ve been treating our refugees, you know, these boat people coming to Australia, appallingly stranding them on offshore islands, and just leaving them there for years and saying they can’t come into Australia. We have a very bad human record human rights record and that in Australia at the moment, but you know, the, the refugee problem is going to be so enormous. Yeah.

Rick Archer: And so we have the same thing in the States with people coming up through Mexico, from Honduras, and Guatemala. And yeah, because it’s so bad down there. And then they they get stuck at the board. And we’re not going on. I mean, let’s tie this back to spirituality, because it might seem we’re just going into doom and gloom mode. But this, this is extremely relevant. This what we’re saying here to the whole notion of a spiritual awakening, a man that kind and this kind of darkness before the dawn thing that we’re experiencing now needs to be understood in its proper context.

Gillian Ross: As well, exactly. And all the more reason where we have to do this inner work to find a source of inner peace and inner joy. What is that lovely quote from Joseph Campbell that I use, it’s possible to participate joyfully in the sorrows of the world, which seems crazy. But you know, it is possible if we find this source of inner peace and light within ourselves. And realize, of course, that this is this is a story that the universe will go on, and cetera, et cetera. But again, we come down to the importance of our mystical renaissance in this. And I heard someone talking the other day about how they’re introducing meditation, mindfulness techniques to refugee somewhere in the Middle East or North Africa somewhere, and how much it has helped them to deal with the tragedy that they’re living through. So it doesn’t matter where you are, what you’re doing, to find those inner resources are more needed than ever. Absolutely. Yeah.

Rick Archer: I was on a boat ride. on Lake Lucerne one time in about 1974 With marshy, Mahesh Yogi and he was talking about this phase transition thing that the society was going to undergo. And someone asked him how we could survive it, you know, what should people do care for it? You know, a lot of people are, you know, talking these days about stocking up food and underground bunkers. And but his his answer was get established in the self, you know, capitalist self, and that, then you’ll have the foundation to deal with whatever comes along.

Gillian Ross: Exactly that didn’t he also say that, you know, the winds of grace are blowing everywhere. But we have to raise our sails to catch them,

Rick Archer: I think are a bit other words, I think. I think it was our Bindu. But anyway, it’s beautiful. Say it again.

Gillian Ross: Whatever severe? Well, the winds of grace are blowing everywhere, but we have to raise our sails to catch them. In other words, there is help there but it’s not going to descend in terms of a spaceship somewhere or you know, Christ suddenly appearing in the midst of this or whatever. It has to come through us. We are now the hands of Christ. We are now the feet of Christ or there’s a lovely quote from from Mother Teresa. Not Mother Teresa. Centuries, centuries, yes, yes, yes. That we now have to embody that consciousness, but it’s there for us. It’s waiting for us. It’s yearning, yearning, as we said earlier, to move through us and a guide us. Each of us this is the other thing which is so important to understand. In our story, we’re not all going to become the same as begin to embody the transcendent. We each emerge totally unique, with completely unique gifts to bring to this unfolding cosmic drama. This is so important. I love the image of the the analogy of the rose window of charge cathedral at gorgeous vision of the window, and we reach like shards of glass within that, you know, we have to find where our place is, and I gift to the universe. So it’s incredibly uplifting. It brings purpose and meaning into our lives, although there’s always catastrophe and big, you know, it sounds terrible, and so on. What can I do? How can I help you have to find your your shard of glass or another analogy is a symphony and note in the cosmic symphony, you know, needs you to be playing it it needs you to be gifting it with however humble it may seem, however, we each have a unique gifts to bring to the unfolding story, arch chords at the cosmic drama. And that’s beautiful, that’s so uplifting for people, how can you feel depressed if you understand that, and how critical it is now, in this time of chaos and transition, to find that and gift it to the big picture,

Rick Archer: I would say that sameness and conformity and drabness all result from insufficient contact with the mystical dimension of life. But when the contact is lively and unclear, then everybody becomes even more distinct and unique and individual expression. Again, like the like a forest or the thing of the rainforest. It’s, it’s so the soil is so fertile and get so much rain and everything that you have this abundance of diversity of animals and plants and everything else as compared with the desert or, you know, a rather arid place.

Gillian Ross: Absolutely, absolutely. It’s, it’s a mistake to think that we’re all going to end up the same if we all become calm and peaceful and connect with our inner space of peace and so on. You know, the fact is that our emotions are very similar and very boring. I love the distinction between emotions and feelings. This came from my teacher Samuels, again, emotions come from our blockages or Samskaras, our reactivity, very much my ego consciousness, really anger and jealousy and so on, so forth. Fear. Feelings come from our higher self, they come from this higher level of consciousness is awakening consciousness, feelings of joy, of love, of love of life, and compassion, and so on. And the big difference to determine whether you’re in an emotion or a feeling is if you contemplate an emotion become aware of emotion, it, it diminishes, you know, it’s one way of dealing with it is to become aware of it with your witness consciousness. If you become more aware of a feeling it heightens it. So you know, is it what you’re describing is a move or shift into feelings into akin to that joy and creativity that is our birthright as divine human beings, rather than the contrasting energies of emotions? Nice. That makes sense. Nice distinction.

Rick Archer: Yeah. Another thought that you triggered is that this is difficult as the times may be and as as even more difficult as they may become. It’s actually a very opportune time for rapid spiritual progress. I think there’s I’ve heard that there’s a Chinese symbol for crisis, which contains within it the the symbol for opportunity Some such a you may have heard that, but um, under, you know, difficult circumstances, which is not to say that if you’re in the midst of the war in Syria, it seems like you know, as evolutionary as being in an ashram or something like that. But I think I just think that the, the atmosphere is such these days that if we put up our sails, the wind is blowing quite swiftly. And we’ll make great progress if we choose to hop on the sort of the bandwagon that is that is going on?

Gillian Ross: Well, I suppose the big question is okay, the story is very uplifting, and the shift in paradigm as we described it, well, the other quote we didn’t mention was the famous one from Einstein, of course, that you can’t solve the same problem at the same level of consciousness that you created it. And that’s, again, what we’re talking about at the moment, this need to lift our level of consciousness. The other point I want to make is that, you know, we talk about raising the level of consciousness to the next stage of human evolution, but to realize that consciousness is evolving, that we’ve gone a long way to go in terms of what our potential is in the evolution of consciousness. And I think the person who’s best, you know, mapped it for us, in this context of our evolutionary stories, Sri Aurobindo, and I really recommend his disciples, SAP Prems book, The Adventures in consciousness with theory Bindu. But I think he identifies five different levels of consciousness as the, the ordinary mind. And then there’s the, what’s the next mode and how we go on to the illumined demand, the higher mind, the lumen mind, the intuitive mind, the unity, mind, and so on, all with different flavors, you know. So this is what we go over being enlightened, well, you know, we’ve got a long way to go, before we get to the ceiling of all of that, and the disgust beautifully in this little gem of a book called Adventures in consciousness by Seth Prem. So we’re just stepping, you know, very humbly and gently into the next level of what the integral is Ken Wilber, his colleagues call integral consciousness, the second tier of the evolution of consciousness. So it’s a journey. Yeah, we’re stepping from personal to transportation. And we could talk more about that, I don’t know where you want to go. Now, Rick,

Rick Archer: let’s go everywhere. But um, I heard a great story about Sri Aurobindo, the other day he was there was this cat that used to sort of hang out in the lecture hall where he would lecture. And a lot of times it would get up on his couch or his diets where he would ordinarily speak, you know, and it would go to sleep. And if the cat were sleeping there, he wouldn’t disturb the cat, he would just sort of sit on the edge of the stage or something and give his talk rather than disturb the cat. Yes, yeah. Sweet, you know, just sort of revealed a certain humility, I think, gentleness and compassion and so on. Muhammad once cut off the sleeve of his coat rather than disturb a sleeping cat.

Gillian Ross: Oh, really? Wow. That’s a story. Yes. Yeah. Yes, indeed, indeed.

Rick Archer: Which I think, to our whole discussion, because it implies a sort of a gentleness in dealing with life, and gentleness with dealing, perhaps extrapolating from there to dealing with the world. And look at how brutal we are with life and with the world, in our society today. I mean, we just sort of think nothing of the way we treat millions and millions of animals. And, you know, I mean, those animals in that brain for us that are burning.

Gillian Ross: So Rick, Rick, yeah, you’ve brought me on to one of my favorite themes, which is our treatment of animals. And when what you’re saying about Sherif, Bandha, and so on, is manifesting the honoring the sacredness of life, the sacredness of all of life, and our treatment of animals. Gosh, if humankind does survive into the future, we will look back at our time and think, what were we doing? And how people could be party to it, you know, blindly just going along with the cruelty of factory farming and, and even dairy farming and so on. It’s just Yeah.

Rick Archer: I don’t even want to say it because it’s so horrible what you told me about Descartes and what he would do to animals during lectures sometimes and ridicule anybody who objected because he regarded them merely as, you know, little mechanisms that had no feelings. I mean, he’s the guy who was sort of the the father of, of the modern, scientific way.

Gillian Ross: Well, foundation is exactly of our modern world. Believing that you know, humankind was privileged with the sentience and somehow having a soul descending into it and everything else was just machines. Absolutely someone I met a biologist one time saying, you know, if only Descartes had had a pet cat or kitten or a dog or something like that, it obviously did that so animal to love to awaken his awareness of how intelligent and sensitive they are. Unbelievable. Yeah.

Rick Archer: It’s interesting that the father of the modern way of thinking in the materialist paradigm had You know, highly intelligent, highly developed intellect and obviously completely shrunken you know, undeveloped heart. Which you know that that was the springboard for, for the, the way the world has been working lately.

Gillian Ross: Well, the mechanistic model, it states, it certainly doesn’t nourish the soul does it? I think there’s a lovely quote I use in my book from a poet called James Agee. Adji, something like that. Yeah, he described our prevailing worldview, that we are this accidental speck of consciousness, etc, etc, in in a dead dead matter, coming out of dead matter, as the most, what he calls it the the most horrendous crime that humankind has ever perpetrated upon itself or something like that, you know, because it’s puts our consciousness in a straitjacket, the only way we can go from there is backwards, really, it solidifies our evolution into a higher level of engagement with the sacredness of reality in ourselves.

Rick Archer: Yeah. And for some reason, I’ve just moved to say once again, that this might sound like the kind of a philosophical discussion we’re having here. But it is so germane to what is happening in the world, it just, and I just can’t, you know, look at what is happening in the world and not see it in a spiritual context, or in the context of there being insufficient spiritual development, the whole notion that spirituality is in somehow unrelated to what you know, to current events, is strange to me, I think it’s go ahead, continue. Well,

Gillian Ross: I think it’s called the second wave spirituality, which is now bringing spirituality to the marketplace. And we’re seeing it brilliantly in the wonderful Marianne Williamson at the moment, you know, astounding for the presidency of the United States. She says that you can’t be spiritual without being political these days, I would translate that as being that you can’t be spiritual, authentically spiritual, without being a sacred activist, without your connection with the Divine moving you as I saying earlier, to bring your gift into into a world in crisis, you know, how could you not do that? Even in some cases, it may be sitting in a cave and meditating up there, but not for your own enlightenment, but for the well being of the planet in some way. That’s fine. You know, we’ve got we have to have we have gotten had a narcissistic, we still have an epidemic of narcissism, don’t we? That just stresses me about so much spiritual practice. So much spirituality is couched in terms of my enlightenment, my well being, you know, me, I’m the mind. And it’s completely missing the point, you’ll never get anywhere with that attitude. Because the essence the core of mysticism is humility, and surrender to a higher level of being. And it’s not about the mind. And if you do find that connection, and hope we’re going to talk more about mystical experience and mystical mysticism, what that means. If you if you do have an authentic connection with the divine, the defining quality is humility and service you want to serve, it’s a natural part of our being to serve the whole, because we are part of the whole apart from anything else. Yeah.

Rick Archer: And it’s not only spiritual practitioners, who are sometimes narcissistic, but spiritual teachers, even some rather popular ones. I was listening to a talk by one guy who I very, I hate to call him a spiritual teacher, but he poses as one who was referring to basically everyone other than himself, just he was advocating adultery and saying, it’s especially useful for men because they’re not, it’s natural for them. And that if anybody says otherwise, or tries to lay any kind of ethical trip on you, they’re just ignorant monkeys. That was his phrase for describing, you know, humanity in general. And, you know, they’re stupid and the world is illusory anyway. And so do whatever you want. There are people out there speaking this way?

Gillian Ross: Yeah, yeah. Yeah, I think that’s, that’s the shadow side, I think Andrew Harvey refer to it as the shadow side of non dualism, you know, this notion that you can just do anything or it gets the world isn’t real. And it’s an illusion, etc, etc. It’s, it’s not where we meant to be in authentic spirituality and mysticism. Not at all.

Rick Archer: Yeah. Wish, well, I have stories, but I don’t want to get into them. Very spiritual, things like that. But we are better ways to spend our time here. So one thing is, go ahead.

Gillian Ross: I just think that you know, in terms of philosophical discussion, I rather like the Charles birch model of what we’re talking about, you know, in terms of our evolution, that, that we have these three basic models matter, that the matter spirit one the matter, the matter never experiences, which is the materialistic model, then we have matter sometimes experiences which is the Cartesian model, you know, the duality that somehow we are different from everything else. And then we have the third which is our panentheism, which is Mater always experiences both. It’s a nice way of explaining that to people that, you know, move now to the matter always experiences and that More and more scientists, biologists even are beginning to put forth that forward as the prevailing understanding of, of reality. Matter always experiences.

Rick Archer: Yeah. panentheism because I want to talk about that with you. And recently, Sam Harris’s wife, Annika wrote a book called conscious, listen to a couple of interviews that she did one with Dan Harris of ABC News and another with her husband, Sam. And at one point they got into this discussion about well, you know, where does it end? I mean, if everything is conscious to some degree, does that mean my shoe is conscious and you know, things like that. And then they came very close to sort of having a breakthrough, which is to say they began to consider well, some say that consciousness is actually the foundation of everything, and that everything is actually consciousness appearing to be a material, but then they began to snicker and write it off as a new age. Whoo. And to you know, insult Deepak Chopra.

Gillian Ross: Yes, yes. I don’t understand why that story, the consciousness being the essence of reality is not just so infectious. It’s just so yeah, it brings joy and purpose and meaning. So, so what were we saying around that? Yes, that’s define it. Well, it’s the feeling of the Divine I avoid the term God because I think it’s got got Jaco baggage, but, you know, Okay, God, I prefer to say the divine, or the mystery with the capital in the Divine is both within nature and beyond, within the universe, within creation and beyond. That brings us to, may or may not be helpful to bring in gender here that very, very off traditionally, the divine within Matt has been known as the feminine as the as the goddess as the mother. And it’s, it’s archetypal, it sort of resonates with our understanding of birth and creativity is coming from the Mother, Mother Earth Mother, she’s the Divine Mother is within creation. And the Transcendent is the masculine. The cooler, divine energy, less juicy. Andrew has cooled practice, I’ve quote Andrew Harvey a lot, because he has been my most recent inspiration in terms of all of this, I have to say, I really honor him as a scholar and a mystic of our time, and it’s a lot of wisdom to, to share. So yes, so we have our core practices, which are connections with the transcendent. And then we have a heart practices, a warm practices, which are a practices that connect us with the Divine Mother, with our earthiness, and it’s a matter of integrating those two in the heart, actually, but but that distinction is made. So again, it comes down to how can you understand all of this simply from the rational mind, you really do have to have some experience of these energies, to find them, to to embrace them, you know? And that they can become, we talk more about this, I hope, how tangible how tangible, subtle energy and subtle structures of consciousness can become, like the chakras, you know, like Kundalini energy, etc, etc. You can’t just dismiss it as woowoo and nucleobases the consensus is arising so many people experiences energy. So we can talk then about, you know, the science of spirituality, subjective or radical empiricism, we have to start measuring and listening or taking seriously subjective experiences. Because the other aspect of this is that the inner is the outer, in part of our new paradigm is that you know, whatever is outside is influenced by what is inside and vice versa. We know this now from quantum physics, don’t we the impact of consciousness on actualizing, the outside world, this is enormously revolutionary. In terms of our story that we do, we begin to see the synchronicities between the inner work the inner and the outer, won’t go so far as to entirely the inner is creating the outer you mentioned biocentrism, when we’re exchanging emails the other day, that gets us into very deep water. But anyway, that’s this, just just touching the idea that the inner and the outer are not disconnected. And therefore what we find within ourselves affects what what happens outside, you know, and it affects our perception and affects what we bring forth from the world. Yeah, that makes sense.

Rick Archer: It does. Yes. And, you know, as I understand it, I think science tried to sort of get subjectivity out of the way because it was unreliable, you know, and tried to sort of understand the world in an objective way, what it really is, as opposed to what our unreliable senses might think it is. But the only problem is that, you know, anything we know has to be known through the mechanism of this mind, this brain is the senses and so if If science has failed, which it has to focus on the full development of this mind and brain and you know, consciousness, then it’s necessarily sort of handicapped itself severely in its ability to understand what what life is, and also in the technologies that has spawned which have done so much destruction.

Gillian Ross: Well, I love Ken Wilber the way he addresses modes of knowing and nice regard where he speaks of the eye of the flesh, which is our understanding through the five senses, which is the scientific enterprises. And then he speaks of the the mode of perception, which is the eye of the mind, which is our philosophy and our mathematics, which is critically linked into our scientific understanding, of course, and then the one we have totally denigrated, or you know, disregarded is the eye of the spirit, or the eye of contemplation, or could call it the eye of the soul really, is our perception coming from a connected level of consciousness, and is necessarily subjective, it takes us into the realms of, of spirit of inner realms of other realms of consciousness of subtle energy, etc. But, you know, science doesn’t have any proof of its existence. But the absence of proof is not proof that it doesn’t exist. But you can have subjective experiences, consensus, I mean, all the mystics have all you know, the core messages of all the great mystical traditions come up with the same understanding of oneness of, of our own divinity, etc, etc. and experiences of chakras of subtle energy of lifeforce and so on. There’s a huge consensus around this. So huge consensus coming about near death experiences, and out of the body experiences, you can’t just dismiss them all as at least the nations of the brain or, you know, emotionally emotional disturbance of some kind or another. It’s ridiculous. And I think we are moving into Tammen sciences embracing that you were talking to Chris Bration. Michael Pollan, his name while ago, psychedelics,

Rick Archer: I think beige and Poland. That’s where the bass, bass

Gillian Ross: Yeah, yeah, he’s done a lot of this regard of bringing subjective looking at subjective experiences and understanding that we can have a consensus on them and, and understand better about what our consciousness is all about. So it’s, it’s an evolving field of study, isn’t it?

Rick Archer: Yeah. And I mean, consensus is a major pillar of the scientific method. If some guy says, Hey, I discovered the Higgs boson, you know, with the new Hadron Collider, or whatever it’s called over there in CERN. You know, I’m not going to be able to go and test it, because I wouldn’t know how to do it. But, you know, other physicists can come and say, let me see, I’ll try it and see if I can find it, too. And this is the way science works. And, you know, there’s, there’s consensus, and there’s, you know, more and more people reach a consensus, and then something gains greater greater credence or credibility. All right, but as you were just saying, there have been 1000s, of mystics throughout history, which have had, who have had experiences that concur with one another. And in many cases, in cultures that had no means of communicating with one another. And they all they all have experienced something very similar. So they’ve just use a subjective methodology of exploration, which, interestingly, is, is universally available, which the Large Hadron Collider is not, you know, only a few people have the ability to use that. But everybody in the world has a marvelous scientific instrument in the form of their their human mind and nervous system. Experiment.

Gillian Ross: Yep, with Robert says, we can all become our own laboratory. And I’ve been talking about the scientific method and so on, their paradigms can become enormously rigid. They just ignore evidence, you know, coons structure of revolutions, to kind of escape Kuhn, exactly how scientists are very reluctant to shift out of their paradigms and embrace evidence that’s contrary to them. So there’s that aspect. And what came to mind when you were talking with that example, from Galileo, which I love where, partly, I’m sure it’s apocryphal, but anyhow, Galileo, in his time, when he invented his telescope, invited the Clausius stickle, elite of the time, or some of them to come and view the mountains of the moon through his telescope. And they declined to do so because they said the moon was a celestial body was perfect, and he couldn’t possibly have mountains. Yeah, hello, I’d like to put that into reverse. Now to say that, you know, the scientists are saying that there’s no such thing as subtle energy without, you know, to pick up the tool of meditation and actually experiencing for themselves.

Rick Archer: Yeah, I was listening to Julia moss bridge the other day, who speaks at the sand conference, and she was talking about how she when she deals with scientific colleagues about the things she’s studying which are sort of esoteric by ordinary scientific standards because he’s trying to understand, you know, things such as precognition and Ka’bah consciousness and so on, you know, she she gets these very rigid closed responses. Well, I’m not even gonna look at that because it couldn’t possibly be true. And then she says, Yeah, okay, then I’ve got it. Yours. You’re practicing religion. But I’m I’m actually going to keep practicing science.

Gillian Ross: Yes, yes. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Yeah. So so it’s a science of spirituality. Why not? Yeah, no, no. Yeah. Yeah. Understanding it as a whole different mode of knowledge. You know, it’s different from that of the five senses just make it wrong. No. Okay,

Rick Archer: so um, we could do it even further into that area. But you keep alluding to things you want to make sure that we talk about during this interview. So I want to make sure we get to them. So what are some other what are some things we haven’t touched upon that you want to make sure we do touch upon?

Gillian Ross: Well, the qualities of this new sense of self I suppose it’s emerging, what that means, and definitely a mystical anatomy I’d like to talk about because that’s, you know, that that’s something that I’m very passionate about structures of consciousness. We’re talking about consensus, and our understanding there as part of our science of spirituality and how important that is for our new emerging well, how important I feel it is anyway for an evolution into this next level of human human consciousness.

Rick Archer: Let’s talk about those things. You started off.

Gillian Ross: Well, you were you. You questioned me on mystical semi Cola, mystical Ananda, maybe I should go back to my own experience of this, shall I first experience

Rick Archer: we haven’t even really talked much about you are still you’ve gone through to get where you are today. So let’s

Gillian Ross: Yeah, yeah. Yeah. Well, I can so you know, we can leave that in now. But perhaps you can question me more about that. But yeah, my own my own my own life journey, in a way has replicated the journey of Western consciousness in many ways. So I’d like to share it from that point of view, I had a mystical childhood, mystical experiences, strong connection with the divine, in that sort of almost gets a pre pre personal level of consciousness or something. And then I went to London University, the godless Institute of Gower Street, where all that was crushed out of me, it was in the 60s, and it was dominated by atheism and psychology and behavior is behaviorism and atheism in psychology and atheism in philosophy with a JS logical positivism, logical positivism was the mode at the time, the thinking so I fell into the company have a lot of postgraduate psychology and, and philosophy students. And they convinced me that to be religious to even, you know, entertain seriously. Any any thoughts from Carl Jung at the time, you were manifesting either emotional instability or stupidity. Truly, that was that that was the thought, you know, and I was a country girl with a Yorkshire accent going into London University feeling very intimidated. So I very soon just decided that, you know, that wasn’t acceptable. I was trying very hard not to appear emotionally unstable or stupid. So I lost touch with my spontaneity, my sense of who I was really, I really did. And for the next 15 years, I was crippled with this, this effort to be this best agnostic intellectual.

Rick Archer: Isn’t that a shame? And that should be the effect education would have on a person?

Gillian Ross: Well, yeah, again, to turn around you, Harvey got out of it very quickly. He was young, you know, he could have been an Oxford Don. But he said he escaped the concentration camp of Western tertiary education, very quickly. identified with that remark, I didn’t escape the concentration camp, I stayed with it, I got a master’s degree or a PhD, etc, etc. I taught at universities, always with this feeling that it, you know, didn’t fit me. I mean, I’m not saying that that’s true for every academic some, some people have that gift, and they want to be there, but it wasn’t right for me. And I got slotted into it simply by going along with what was expected of me. And it made me very unhappy. So, so we were really leading to my introduction to subtle energy, the lifeline to my awakening, awakening from this sleep of consciousness, as I now look back on it as being when I wasn’t being me, came with childbirth and pregnancy. It was just such an explosion of love to have this baby. It was such a wonderful feeling to have this feeling this life in within me. And I have to say, you know, in my during my pregnancy, I didn’t drink or smoke or you know, do all those things that I was doing when it wasn’t directed, which was helping my state of mind. So it was my love I felt for my children. So my motivation is not to be enlightenment, enlightened. It never has been in my spiritual journey, not the least bit interested in that. I wanted to be healthier and happier for my young sons. So I decided I had to do something about myself and I started going to yoga classes. I must have had a very good teacher because very soon, very early on, I had this amazing experience in what is called Yoga Nidra the practice at the end of the class, where you lie down in shavasana, and Dead Man’s pose, and you’re guided through your body, almost one cell at a time, you know, to relax and let go and let go. And I sort of lost my physical body. And I felt myself to be this body of energy vibration of light. And it was so beautiful and such a contrast to the sort of contracting energies of my rational mind for the last 15 years, you know, that I wanted to explore more of it. And of course, I had further experiences in yoga nidra, which awakened me to my subtle body by thetic bodies, we call it the lifeforce body. And I joined as a yoga teacher. And then I went through a shiatsu practitioner, and again, had a release of energy, through the shiatsu practice, just like acupuncture really, and, and I trained as a shiatsu practitioner, because I was so impressed with that. So that was my introduction to my mystical anatomy and subtle experience. And then of course, I went on to meditation. And I did go in because 10 days with passionate meditation, where you turn your mind into a laser beams focusing just on your nose for three days, then you take that laser beam of a mind through every cell of your body. And again, I began to experience these meridians that the acupuncturist map, you know, channels of energy moving through us, and I was feeling them in a very defined way. And I also began to feel the chakras the the wielders of energy, or my central channel, which I didn’t know anything about at the time, which of course, now is quite warm. It’s common knowledge. But we’re looking back at the 70s. Now, early 80s, late 70s. And this again, it wasn’t just an Oh, how wonderful experience. It was a transformation in consciousness. It made me feel different. You know, it really did. It made me want to engage more with life. It made me feel more alive. It made me more in love with life. And this was all an awakening of my, what I call my mystical anatomy, and then fine, and then I met this extraordinary being called Dr. Samuels again in the late 80s. Oh, I must add that, you know, a result of all this, this, this awakening, you might call it, I lift siddhi life, I left my academic life, I left my marriage. And I took my three sons off to the Blue Mountains of New South Wales to explore meditation, consciousness and a whole alternative lifestyle. So it was a very dramatic shift. You know, I realized I had to do that. Because I was so excited by this new consciousness that was coming up in me, and also what I was reading about consciousness. So then I met Samuel ciganda say when you’re ready, your teacher appears what he did. He was a doctor French. He’d been meditating for a couple of years, I think in the East. And he was enormously giant intellect and he quite clearly had had a massive awakening I’d say Kundalini awakening in the early days when I was sitting with him I remember suddenly seeing this light around him the sparkling white brilliant light around never seen an aura before and I’ve just sort of real with it realize them that he was a very powerful being you know, and, and that it was a privilege to be with him. And he introduced me he came to Australia because he’d been guided on a higher plane to found a school of esoteric studies in the western Gnostic tradition, chatted know anything about but it sounded very impressive. He came with nothing other than his library of books. But he very soon got a following because of his psychic abilities, his his knowledge, his just his presence, you know, he was a giant of this, yeah, consciousness. Anyway, he introduced me to meditation on the third eye. This is one of the core practices of the school. And he subsequently went on to mass lots of students and set up a center in Sydney Center in California. He died a few years ago, which was rather sad, but leaving behind an enormous volume of work in books and CDs, and so forth. And I still do his practices. I’m an enormously grateful for my connection with him. But it’s interesting that I didn’t feel moved to be a dedicated student of the school, I always remained peripheral, I didn’t seem ready to be pulled into what I thought was has a very masculine quality to it. And besides which I was finding myself and my independence, and my feminine, you know, side and the sacred feminine. But I do, do feel enormously grateful for the tools he gave me to awaken my mystical anatomy. And one of these most precious ones is the practice for awakening the third eye. And I don’t know if that’s the point in which you’d like to come in and say something recorded as you go on about that. I do. He gave me permission to make a CD of the practice, which I did in the late 90s. And it’s available as a free download on my website.

Rick Archer: You have a couple of cities Hear that I’ll be creating a link to on on your page on BatGap. The Art of Letting Go and relaxation for sleep. So is that practice also on those CDs?

Gillian Ross: A third? I know that’s a separate No, no, it’s not in. It’s not. It’s not available commercially anymore. But it’s available as a free download on my website. And this Yeah, the gateway, this portal, the third eye, which is actually a tunnel going from through from the front of the head through to the back of the head. It’s a tough, it’s a tunnel of subtle tunnel, it won’t be revealed if you have an operation on the brain, of course. Don’t try that. But I believe all meditation practices are most of them anyway. And there are many, many, we know many different sort of meditation practices these days, mostly under the umbrella of mindfulness. But meditation on the third eye, most of these meditation do take you to an awakening of the third eye. Because if you’re focused very, you know, in a concentrated manner on a candle, for example, you begin to sort of feel this vibration here. And that’s the start of the awakening of the third eye. But it’s like a gateway, it’s like a portal into the inner realm, to a more to an actual experience of spiritual realms. But first of all, very mundanely in a way, an experience of your own subtle energy, your chakras, your your etheric body, as we call it, your energy centers, your particularly your central channel, which goes down into the earth and up through the top of the head and out through the top. And the third, it takes you into that. And it’s interesting, you know, that now people are ready to talk about these things. When formerly not so long ago, there would be thought to be New Age nonsense, or the other aspect of it, they’ve been secretly hidden in esoteric traditions in the East, where, you know, only very experienced practitioners have this sort of information revealed to them. And part of our consciousness revolution in my perception is definitely that these have to be gifted to humanity as a whole, that it’s time for us to awaken our mystical anatomy. And it’s happening, we’re having, you know, I think a lot of the psychotic crack ups are from experiences of Kundalini from these mystical energies, you might call them that people don’t understand and are not ready for. I haven’t heard your interview with Dorothy Walters, darling, but this will link indefinitely with what she’s been saying, I’m sure. Yeah, so talk to her. Sadly,

Rick Archer: yeah, it’ll be posted probably tomorrow. That was just last week’s interview. And she didn’t know what it was when it first started happening to her. She had this Kundalini awakening, and she hadn’t a clue. And she had to sort of, you know, piece it together by but for most part, for her, it has been a blissful thing. And, but not for everybody. I mean, there that you there’s a section in your book where you talk about people who are institutionalized because they’ve undergone some sort of spiritual awakening or Kundalini awakening, and they have no idea what it is. And so they go to a doctor who thinks they’re going crazy and gives them drugs, maybe locks them up, and so on, and so forth. So I think what you’re, if there’s going to be a sort of a universe, general mass awakening, which there seems to be happening in the world, then as you say, there should also there will need to be a mass dissemination of the understanding of what it entails, you know, like, like, you’re talking about Kundalini and chakras and third eye and all that stuff. It’ll have to go from being esoteric knowledge to public knowledge, and perhaps even eventually taught in schools or something.

Gillian Ross: When that’d be wonderful. My word. Yes.

Rick Archer: I mean, there are actually schools even though there’s one here where I live where all the kids meditate. And there, there are various Ka’bah The Morgan is doing great stuff out in Portland, Oregon, with kids in schools. And yes, yeah.

Gillian Ross: We have the equivalent of her she’s wonderful. Yes, I heard it was you talking to her? I looked her up. She’s doing great stuff. I have a school near me, who is similarly geared to that that sort of well, really the evolution story of evolution, spirituality, really the principal there is an evolutionary, what he did was set up a school for boys between the ages of seven and 15, who have fought through the cracks of mainstream ADT education, their artistic ADHD, they’ve already come from dreadful drug abuse, you know, domestic violence, etc. And he took them all in. And what the school does is they have meditations every day. They’re given this understanding that their unique, divine or unique manifestations of the Divine, they all know each other, they have rituals where they honor each other and listen to each other. And the boys come and camp with me on my 40 acre property from time to time. We have a campfire and we play games around the fire and we you know, they do meditation practice. To me, I’ve been so impressed with them, they really have been moved by what they’ve been offered at this school. And one of them’s leading up one of them saying to me, last year, when where he was washing up with me how grateful he was for the school and had it not been for the school, he would have taken his own life, you know, and we’re seeing an epidemic of teenage suicide at the moment. And this sort of thing is not rocket science, you know, to introduce people to a deeper understanding of their own their own divinity, basically.

Rick Archer: That’s great. Yeah, it’s, don’t you feel a sort of a urgency I do, to sort of, do whatever you can to just kind of provide whatever you can, that will, that will be of value to people in, in waking up. There’s, it’s like, there’s such an urgent need in the world. And any, any little thing we can do without being, you know, pain in the ass, you know, being kind of a fundamentalist proselytizer, but in a gentle way, largely by example. Anything we can do to help people realize that there’s so much more to life than they may have been told, and that, you know, they’re such beautiful alternatives to suicide are the various drugs these people take to numb themselves. It’s just a shame that it’s like, I sometimes use the the metaphor of everybody’s a millionaire, they’ve got they’ve won the lottery. And they’ve, you know, but they don’t realize it in the lottery tickets in their sock drawer. And they’re just sort of begging on street corners, yes, starving, freezing, and so on. Whereas they can have such abundant life if they can just tap into what they actually already have.

Gillian Ross: Yes, yes. And tap into that. And then the thing is that it totally transforms your perception of reality, like Joseph Campbell said, you know, perceived from the heart or perceived from this inner space of consciousness, the world becomes a vow rather than, than it immediately awakens your sacred perception of reality. And I mean, Christ said, didn’t hear that the kingdom of heaven is spread upon the earth, but no one sees it. It’s exactly what we’re talking about, you know, it’s no small matter, and I’ve synced. And this I think, Brian Swimme, talks about the religion of consumerism, consumerism has become our current religion. And it’s, it’s, it’s a, it’s a strategy for masking, our inner emptiness, our lack of meaning, a lack of purpose. And sadly, of course, our whole social structure now depends on it. So it’s likely very pleased about it being closed down. We’ve got to keep the wheels of commerce going, which is absurd.

Rick Archer: I know, they’re talking about progress in terms of the gross national product, and whether it’s how many percentages, it’s increased this year, and stuff like that. Exactly. And, you know, when it comes around Christmas time, all the stories on the news are about how much people are shopping, you know, and how much they’re buying compared to last year, and so on. And they always share this mob scenes where the doors and the store open, and everybody goes in and tramples each other trying to get the latest thing.

Gillian Ross: It’s gross, it’s gross. It’s a far cry from our subtle anatomy. And I was listening to the other if you just called the Prime Minister of Scotland the other day, do you know her name, some show, whatever. Anyhow, apparently, she and the prime minister of Iceland, who is also a woman, and the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda, she hurt her wonderful, wonderful, the three of them are talking now about a gross national product, whatever you like to call it, which incorporates health and well being not just economic growth. It’s interesting those three women moment, planet, Iceland, Scotland and New Zealand, watch that space. Yes.

Rick Archer: And maybe we’ll get a woman president next time around.

Gillian Ross: Oh, that’d be great. Yeah.

Rick Archer: One that, you know, really embodies the the principle of what ideally is to be a woman, not just a sort of a Margaret Thatcher type who you know. But as someone who really brings out the deeper values of the heart and so on.

Gillian Ross: Well, it’s very interesting, really, that the feminine energy has been like a reservoir I haven’t dated untapped reservoir of consciousness that we’re now able to draw on with all women had become Maggie Thatcher’s, it would have been a bit of a shame. Because basically women are taking up now spiritual practices and going to, you know, yoga and so it’s mainly women. Because there’s no doubt about it, that our consciousness of evolution requires an injection of feminine energy, you know, that our problems have been very young, very mascot V arising from a masculine bias. And, and we’re not talking then about a male or a female, we know that we’re talking about the masculine and the feminine within each of us, the animals and the animals, as Jung called them, and that men have to become this is the answer to domestic violence surely, that men have to become more in touch with their feminine energy, you know, and, and that has to be bought out again, in our in our education system. And in our in our mystical awakening.

Rick Archer: I think it kind of relates to what we were talking about earlier in terms of the sensitivity, you know, that Sri Aurobindo showed when he wouldn’t, didn’t want to disturb the cast, you know, or that Muhammad showed when he didn’t want to disturb the cat. And there’s, of course, it goes far beyond cats. But there, there’s, there’s a sort of a delicacy or a sensitivity, which I guess you could call feminine, but which is really within everyone’s capacity to unfold. And, you know, you just end up going through life more gently, you know, less, less like a bull in a china shop.

Gillian Ross: Well, even the concept of inner exploration is a sort of feminine one, isn’t it? You know, the masculine is so out there, five senses externalized, that’s been our masculine dominated, ego consciousness to explore out there and deny the inner, and then coming back to the inner realm. You’re embracing more the feminine perception of reality. I mean, you know, we speak of, or the sacred sacred psychology, they speak of our time being seeing the rise of the goddess Return of The Goddess, and she is the goddess, she is the guardian of interiority. She’s the one that would take us into our inner depths and our subtle anatomy. It’s rather nice to feel that God is inspired.

Rick Archer: Yeah. Reminds me of a nearby star just wrote a book about this stuff, which I should

Gillian Ross: know nearby. Yes.

Rick Archer: So what is this, you wanted to talk about the emergence of new sense of self, which you call the snowflake self? Ah, quite a bit.

Gillian Ross: Yes, I do. Now, it sort of came up in an interview I was doing a few years ago, and I sort of just spontaneous started started describing our new self as a snowflake self. And then I was absolutely reprimanded on this, because you know, it’s had very pejorative connotations, snowflake, flaky, blah, blah, blah. And it wasn’t meant like that at all. The reason it came to mind was I was trying to say that, just as each snowflake is a unique, gorgeous precipitation of water. So each one of us has a unique, gorgeous precipitation, or condensation of the infinite ride. That’s what we are in our new snowflake self, so different from the ego, right? And that, without waiting of our mystical anatomy, with our whitening of our consciousness, to engage with the sacredness of reality, and all of that, that we’ve been talking about, the interactions have that we begin to birth, a whole new sense of self beyond the ego, that’s what the name of the game is about, isn’t it, it’s not just having these ideas floating around in our mind, we have to embody them in some way, in a new sense of self, that transcends ego. Now I know a lot of the people you’ve interviewed have taught, well, we still have to have an ego, etc, etc. I don’t see it that way, I think we replace the ego with this snowflake self, it’s got different connection, it’s connected to the Divine, which makes it so different from the ego. And it can perform all the functions of rationality that the ego does, except with this connection to the divine will, not my will, but Thy will be done. So it makes it very different. What I try to explain to people is it with this level, in our, in our evolution, we’ve tend to experience ourselves when we start to do our meditation practices, etc. As to selves. We can know when we’re in the ego, we know when we’re being reactive, we know when we’re contracting into those, you know, fear. Why me poor me responses of the ego, compared with what we like when we’re more free flowing in our snowflake self, when we feel connected, you know, we feel more whole more whole. And then that helps you to sort of like when you get an ego response, whoops, no, no, that’s just, that’s, that’s not real, that’s my ego come back into your authentic self. Does that makes sense? I really feel that and can cultivate the one rather than the other. I think

Rick Archer: the word ego is kind of like the word God. And that is that there’s so many definitions of it so much baggage. And if you’re going to use it at all, you kind of have to start by defining it. You know, but if we think of it as a faculty, like the sense of hearing, or the sense of touch or something like that, that, but you know, kind of more fundamental than those because they all all those sort of emerging from it. But a faculty rather than sort of what we are, it’s something it’s a tool that we have, rather than what we are, then it kind of puts it in its proper place. I don’t know if we, you know, my sense of an ego is that there’s a sense of just a sense of, like, you know, if you bang your thumb with a hammer over there and Australia, you feel it. I don’t. There’s some kind of localization of, of experience that is unique to each Mind Body mechanism. And without that we wouldn’t live very long. And if someone calls your name you turn your head and so on. But what if a person gets so locked into the the notion that this is the entirety of my being? Then they have divorced themselves from the transcendent from the Divine? And are just sort of, you know, running roughshod over everything in the world? Because they’re not going with the flow. Who was that? What was that quote? You said earlier about the the Dow

Gillian Ross: loving in the count of eternal Dow,

Rick Archer: you know, that that song row row, row your boat gently down the stream Merrily? Okay, so you’re, if we think of the ego as the boat, if you’re, if you’re sort of like, trying to go against the stream, and you know, making a big fuss and crashing into rocks and just sort of bland, but if, but if you just sort of go with the flow of the stream, but there’s a little bit of use of the oars still, you know, just sort of like, okay, just a little bit of guidance here, a little bit of discernment there, discrimination there. But basically, you’re the river is carrying you along. That’s kind of the way I experience or see it. You know, we still make the choices, we still make decisions, we still use our judgment, you know, go ahead, we’re gonna say, Well, it’s

Gillian Ross: good to say, you know, I mean, the ego doesn’t have negative connotations, I see the ego as being the, the, the illusory, separate self, okay. And the qualities and attributes you’re talking about, are also that person to the snowflake self. You know, so the intellect has been the power to the power tool of separation, but it can also be the power tool of the highest self and the snowflake self. Certainly, you know, we’re not going to discard our very well sculptured, rational mind.

Rick Archer: You know, Shawn kresser. Discrimination here. We’re here that book by by Adi Shankara. Chris Jhana, discrimination. And what he says in the book is that, you know, discrimination or discernment between the subtlest aspects of reality is what liberates you. So, you know, there’s a very refined level of intellect, which is used to do that. And so it’s not like, and that’s one of the one just one of the faculties but it’s not, it’s not the enemy. It’s a tool, it’s an aid.

Gillian Ross: Well, I would say those more refined levels of discernment of exactly what comes up in the snowflake. So if you become more discerning, you know, in a way that your consciousness isn’t Most definitely, that’s one of the one of the ways you can distinguish. I’ve had a screen coming up on my screen, Rick, I don’t know. It says something about video settings and camera. Is it meaningful?

Rick Archer: Everything’s fine, don’t worry. It looks good.

Gillian Ross: It’s gone now. I couldn’t see your face because it was blocking your face. And I like to see your face. So yes, so you could miss any differences between what I call what I’m calling the ego and it is a semantic thing in the end. But do you know the the illusory sense of self, as opposed to the connected connected is a lovely word, but disconnected as opposed to the connected self? Right, the connected to the Divine, be it very tentatively and that’s why I also liked the word snowflake self, because it’s fragile, very fragile. At this stage in our evolution, a very easily freezes back, one might say into ego, you know, we could, we could begin to see ourselves doing that. Great things about meditation practices, that gives you a witness consciousness, where you become aware of, you know, where you’re coming from, are more aware of what you’re doing. So meditation is a big key to this transition, of course, to snowflake self. So So yes, a lot of the differences are more compassionate, more loving, more caring, or connected to the Divine, and to each other, a whole new way of relating to people where you relate to their snowflake self, rather than manipulate them as an ego to be, you know, controlled or manipulated in some way. It really does transform the way we relate to each other, which is so necessary in our time, we can go into we spaces and Patricia Albear over that that’s all coming from his high level of consciousness, his new way of connecting one to the other. But above all, I think also it’s a source of joy we talked about earlier of peace and joy and that connectivity, it can participate joyfully in the sorrows of the world. But above all, Rick, it loves to serve. It loves serve, you know, and it is enormously humble. It’s began to taste something that it knows is just a taste that there is so much more to come if we if we open our hearts to it. Yeah.

Rick Archer: Another cool thing about snowflakes is they say that no two snowflakes are alike. Each one is unique. Exactly, exactly what we’re saying earlier about drabness sameness and so on. Yeah. So so this whole sort of global, if it happens is not going to make us all the same will each be unique snowflake.

Gillian Ross: Exactly. That’s why I like the term snowflake again, you know, because each of those crystals is unique and it’s to bring that message to people that they’re unique. Is there beauty as precipitations of the Divine? Yeah, yeah. So because it’s so much more creative. That said, the creativity is a lovely word too, isn’t it that our current paradigms tends to, to suffocate creativity unless it’s in the interests of science and technology. You know, we’re all mystics, we’re all artists, we’re all poets at heart, and all that has become so specialized, you know, less, less, you’re a professional artist or a professional songwriter. So it’s not sort of recognized when that’s part of our, I think, our emerging snowflake consciousness to find the find the artist within ourselves to find that our creativity I love Matthew Fox, his holy trinity of sites, art and mysticism.

Rick Archer: Mirage he used to give this lecture in which he said that routine work kills the genius in people. And that routine work is kind of necessary to to accomplish things you can’t just sort of reinvent the the assembly line every day if you’re making cars or something. But he said the sort of the routine, repetitive things that we have to do in life, kills the genius in people. And he said that the, the antidote to that is recourse to the transcendent, because it sort of enables you to sort of to have a level of freedom and liberation and replenishment, with the vast energy and intelligence and creativity which reside there. Which, whether or not you have to keep doing the same thing on a relative level, grants you fulfillment, and and reawakens your inner genius.

Gillian Ross: So yes, creative genius. Yes. Yes. That you know, spontaneity is a lovely word to that. There’s no fake yourself, there’s a spontaneity comes in, which is, it’s very liberating. Because you’re feeling that you can be yourself, you’re not guarded about, you know, what other people will think or say, or so on. And that that’s extremely, extremely liberating things enjoy spontaneity and creativity.

Rick Archer: It might seem that if everyone were that way, we’d have sort of anarchy or chaos or something. But no, because if it’s really based in a deep grounding in the transcendent, then that harmonizes all differences. So the differences can become more diverse, and yet at the same time, more harmoniously, intermeshed, or coordinated?

Gillian Ross: Well, yes, spontaneity that we’re talking about isn’t chaotic at all, because it’s action arising from our connection with the Divine. Right. So that’s where we’re bringing in now sacred activism, where you really, you said that the rational mind is a tool, but probably we will reach a stage where we don’t even need the rational man, we just know what to do. Because we’re being guided from this connection to, to our inner light, if you’d like to call it that authentic connection with it, you know, where we’ve freed ourselves of our shadow stuff and the things that come up and distort it being the ego back in. But if we’re talking about a pure connection with the divine, there is a there is a fount of knowledge, as stated above the head, the light above the head, which informs us as to what we should be doing, you know, it just to call it basic intuition. I have a lovely story to tell you in that regard. Actually, I call it my lemon groves story. Can I share my Lemon Grove story? Yes, please. And then it is my last southern left home to go to university and I was poised to sell my house and I had in mind to find some land, and perhaps start a meditation center or invest, you know, spiritualist treats or something of that kind. I didn’t know where it was going to be. And I had I was doing the Third Eye meditation work at the time with Samuel and I have this vision, very clear vision in my third eye of this gorgeous creature in a red sari with long dark hair. And something she had a conversation with me and what I vividly remember when I came back to ordinary mental consciousness was that I was to find a Lemon Grove. Fine. Okay, so when I was looking for land around the place where we lived, I was asking are there any lemons lemon go, my son salt had finally gone bonkers you know, had some seen some she live in a dream telling me to find lemons that was going around looking for lemons. But anyhow, I didn’t find out that I could afford that loan any lemons on it. So I abandoned that project. And Samuel told me to as I was free to go to the desert meditate. So I sold my house, packed up the car with my two dogs, a large quantity of dog biscuits and rice for myself, and headed off to the Australian outback she had never been to before and it is absolutely glorious. We’re very blessed here in having a pristine environment, almost in our doorstep. The red desert and the bright blue skies and startling night skies, took by swag in my little tent and meditated and journal during the day in my tent and then slept in the open at night in my swag under the stars. It was just gorgeous, the sense of freedom, great liberating freedom. And then after a month I spent a month out there I came back and I stayed with my eldest son who was studying at the universe. st in northern New South Wales with his girlfriend. And I saved them for a month. And that was lovely it felt right to spend time with them. And I suggested to them that I buy a house just wildly for them to live in because I have the money from the sale of my house, and that they could live there. And then at the end of their university life, they we could sell it and etc, etc, etc. And I was determined to go back to the Outback, you know, so elated by that I wanted to set off again with total freedom with my dogs and dog biscuits perfect. My old kings would hold him. Anyway, what happened was, we found this land outside an alternative community called Nimbin, which I’d never ever dreamt of living near. Underneath some sacred remembered rocks, an ancient Aboriginal initiation site, very powerful energy. The land was 40 acres entirely covered with weeds and dantata and stuff have been neglected for years, went up in a series of plateaus. The children, the kids thought it was great. There was a shack at the bottom, they said they could restore power and have a cow dog commute to uni, or great. I said, Fine. Okay, more better you than me, I want to go back to the Outback. So bought the land. Two or three weeks later, the relationship had broken up, the girlfriend went one way my son went the other. And I was left with the land and the land tanam in the weeds in the shack, wondering what on earth that hit me. So immediately, I got helped to start clearing the land, didn’t have much money to do it, put the power on etc. My next door farmer neighbor helped me with a tractor to clear and we worked our way up, he built the house halfway up. And then when we got to the top of the land cleared there, what did we find? lemon trees, everywhere, wild lemon trees, no one else in the vicinity had had them at all. And so up near the lemon trees, I’ve now built a wee temple. And it’s got a gorgeous view over the lemon Valley. And I realized when I put that up that right next to it can only be described as a Lemon Grove, there are three huge wild lemon trees. So I’ve placed a statue of Pat Kuan Yin in the middle of the of the Lemon Grove. And I’ve planted Primoz and flowering native bushes around it in honor of my crimson goddess in the 90s, who told me I was to find a Lemon Grove. And I sit there feeling such gratitude for having found my Lemon Grove. But you know, secret of all that is that I did flow in the current of the DAO with all of that it felt right to sell the house, it felt right to go to the Outback felt right to come and visit my son got right to buy the land, etc, etc. And when you know, I was able to do that if I’d bought the rational mind in and weighed up the pros and cons. I don’t think I would have done any of that.

Rick Archer: Do you have any idea who this red sari lady was?

Gillian Ross: No, I’ve never questioned that too much. Someone said it was me my higher self or whatever, or Hindu goddess. I wondered if it was Lakshmi, but I’m doesn’t quite fit the Lakshmi description. No, I really don’t know. But I don’t think it matters terribly. You know, these, these visions and connections with the archetypal world can be visions, or they can be just feelings or senses or just light. And it’s, it’s, it’s how they impact on you that matters. It’s what they do to, to affect your behavior. Yeah,

Rick Archer: I was just curious, because I do think we have guides, you know, that there are subtler beings who have our welfare in mind and do what they can to nudge us this way, in that they can’t force us, but they can nudge us. Give us little insights and suggestions.

Gillian Ross: Oh, most definitely, darling, I’m sure there are beings all around us. But that’s where our discernment comes in what you’re talking about earlier, isn’t it? Because I’ve known people who have spiritual guides quite vividly and they make the most dreadful decisions, you know, because somehow they’re not coming from the clarity of consciousness needed to receive them. So I think you know, the central channel, to me, going back to our mystical anatomy, is very vital in that because it does send to you, once you awaken the central channel, where the Kundalini rises, etc. And you get your connection to above the head, that centers you in clarity and integrity. Does that make sense? Because a lot of people say, you know, when they start to awaken their mystical anatomy, or the subtle energy, they start to empathize so much that they feel other people’s emotions, they feel the pain, you know, the power America, me, but they become like a blob of energy, which which can be problematic. So that’s why it’s so important to have that verticality and central channel in your spiritual practices, and your verticality and your meditation, and of course, an awakening of the heart as an integrating center in your body of energy. So that that doesn’t become problematic. Yes, that makes sense.

Rick Archer: That does. I mean, I think evolution is a lifelong process, maybe a life long process. And it can never kind of rest on your laurels. I mean, there’s always going to be room for more integration and balance and Development and so on and so forth. And, you know, a person can be meditating and doing spiritual practices for decades and still make stupid decisions and, you know, screw up their life. So you have to always say, there’s a great quote from Padmasambhava that I’ve quoted many times, which I try to live by, which is that, you know, although my awareness is as vast as the sky, my attention to karma is as fine as a grain of barley flour. So, you know, you sort of have to Danwon I mean, you mentioned Danwon, in your book, Carlos Castaneda, his teacher, he talks about impeccability. And how one should always attend to one’s life with a sense of impeccability, you know, being aware and careful and, and precise, which is not this, but But again, it’s paradoxical, because the key to that is simultaneously to surrender to the Divine well, and to be in tune with the divine? Well, I don’t mean to say, we’re just hyper vigilant in our individual focus, but there’s some kind of a balance between. Between that, you know, what I mean, does that make sense to you, in your experience.

Gillian Ross: I just know that for myself, connection is the key word. And that’s my connection to the inner light, what we call the causal body, comes from a very diligent daily practice of meditation, which I know you do, but I would describe the sort of meditation that I do is mystic meditation, because it’s approached with a spirit of, of, of devotion, of devotion to this higher consciousness as higher energy. And I think devotion is a key element here, that, that we really have to bring in the devotional quality, to prevent us falling into narcissistic, you know, use of spiritual materialism or whatever you like to call it. Or even transcendental ism, where, you know, we drift off up there, and we’re not interested in the world down here anymore. Yeah, we touched upon that earlier. That devotion. And you’ve mentioned that in terms of all the great gurus of the past, have incredibly devotional devotional to grant the great mother or whatever. And it’s such an important grounding quality. So So yes, for me, it’s that mystic meditation, which is a devotional receptive attitude to whatever is going to happen in my meditation, and becomes prayerful in a way that you know, again, pray that they will not mind be done. So we come back to service again, and all those things, I think, help to help discernment, and they help integrity and they help authenticity, and they help you to stabilize your snowflake self. That’s good. You know, it’s not just about going into meditation. So life is less stressful. I’m afraid that’s another narcissistic. hijacking, you know, of spiritual practices. I get a bit distressed by seeing that in terms of mindfulness meditation, and yoga, but then I realized that these things can be a backdoor into what I’m talking about. Exactly. And people go, yeah, yeah, that can be and that certainly happens. Yes, it can. I mean, thank God,

Rick Archer: back in the old days back in the 70s. And we would say, okay, clearer mind, more creative, better health, you know, better behavior, all this practical stuff that people were actually interested in. And then, you know, maybe after they’d been meditating for three days, we say, Oh, by the way, there’s this thing called cosmic consciousness, you know, and, you know, that’s gonna be somewhere down the line. And, and even after two days of meditation, people might be interested in that, whereas they hadn’t been, you know, a few days before, because they hadn’t ever had a taste of anything in that direction.

Gillian Ross: Well, yes, but that’s why a new story comes in, doesn’t it? Because if we have this framework of the new story of evolutionary spirituality, we’re less likely to be hijacked by these narcissistic distractions, and, you know, and so on, and so forth. Because we’re realizing we’re already understanding that there’s a big picture there that we’re meant to be serving. And it changes the motivation for our spiritual practices are helps to do so. Wouldn’t you say? Yeah, that’s to me. Why, you know, they must have the story, the framework, and then you have you’re inspired to do your video, your spiritual practices with us with a different motivation.

Rick Archer: Yeah, your motivation evolves over time. It

Gillian Ross: can was yes, it can.

Rick Archer: I mean, you can just start out the yoga class because you want to have a better looking body or something but a few years down the line and you’re all interested in higher consciousness. It’s just it’s just so one thing led to the next.

Gillian Ross: Yes, yes, a lot interested in higher consciousness can still be hijacked by the ego by this narcissistic enterprise or by enlightenment. That’s, again, why our story is so useful because it helps to take us out of that motivation. So the story I think, is critical this story of you know, the evolving universe and where We are at this point in our, in our journey on planet Earth and, and what we meant to be doing in the service of the greater good and bringing more goodness truth and beauty and our personal lives and, and and into the world. Yeah,

Rick Archer: I very much agree. I mean, I’ve always emphasized and had had and had it emphasized to me that both knowledge and experience are critical components of the spiritual path, and that it’s like the two legs that we walk on. And you know, without one without the other, and we just can’t progress that smoothly, it can get into all kinds of cul de sacs and problems, if you’re just dwelling on knowledge without experience or vice versa.

Gillian Ross: Well just elaborate on what you mean by knowledge and experience, what sort of knowledge and what sort of experience would be my question there that we have to have both?

Rick Archer: Well, the mystical kind of experience that we’ve been talking about the kinds of things that you have when you meditate regularly, and then knowledge and you’re talking about, you know, we’re even talking about pantheism. And the great stuff in the News, the news story and all that stuff, just, I’ll get there’s all kinds of knowledge, I mean, just the stuff you were saying about the subtle body, for instance. And the third, I mean, there’s so much one can learn that is pertinent to what when ends up experiencing. Yes. And as we go along, if we culture both continue culturing both along the way, they kind of buttress one another, reinforce or safeguard one another.

Gillian Ross: That’s a very nice point actually make because it’s something I’d like to say about the mystical anatomy, that knowledge of that, because it’s not that we’re inventing it, we’re awakening it with our practices and mystic meditation. And in awakening that structure of consciousness and awakening, the understanding the chakras, and the subtle energies and the channels and the column above and so on and the causal body, we are helping to stabilize higher levels of consciousness, they need something to land on. That’s my understanding anyway. And so often in the past, or certainly in our Western experience, where we haven’t had that sort of knowledge, as you’re calling it. We just have transient mystical experiences are here today, and they’re gone tomorrow, you know, and we’re just back in the ego. So it’s so important to have this mapping of consciousness and this mystical understanding this knowledge of our mystical anatomy, and our story, to help stabilize because stabilize is a very inward, it’s a very important word at the moment, if we’re going to shift into next level of evolution, it’s all about stabilizing his higher levels of consciousness, rather than just intuiting them or reading about them. We’re embodying them, we have to have more knowledge and understanding, you talked about earlier of what these energies are, and the structures of consciousness on which they can land. Yeah, that’s absolutely right. Yeah.

Rick Archer: Yeah. Like you, you start to use the word embodiment, which is goes along with stabilize, and another word is integrate, I mean, all these things. Yes, you know, you can have, like, for instance, take psychedelics, people can have a really blowout experience on psychedelics, but then they come down, and it’s lost. And it’s, it’s an amazing memory, and it may change them in a profound way. But it certainly hasn’t been stabilized or integrated. And you wouldn’t want to just keep doing psychedelics every few days and hope to eventually stabilize that you have to eventually go into a more natural way of, of going about it. But that’s a procedure that just continues and continues and continues as you go along. There’s just step after step of, of, you know, dipping into deep experience, integrating, stabilizing and embodying it, dipping in integrating it and so on. And it just gets more and more solid, more and more full.

Gillian Ross: Yes, and of course, in the early stages, we’re talking about whether it’s psychedelics, or whatever we’re using to awaken our consciousness and I’m not opposed to psychedelic therapy these days, again, under done under very authentic guidance, and I think there’s a lot of there’s a lot of shady stuff going around in that area, you know, upstart shaman isms are charging a lot of money for for now you ask experience, which you guys all have in your living room in terms of what they can offer anyway, that that we have to teach you it can be valuable in this early stages. You know, I had Samuel to guide me through my experiences in the early stages of subtle energy. That to find a teacher that resonates with an I think as you’ve spoken off, you can evolve from one teacher to another you can change around depending where you’re at. But that’s that’s also the knowledge dimension is to have someone guiding you who’s had these experiences and stabilized stuff that you’re just trying to, to bring into being or to awaken. But on the other hand, I think we can become too reliant on teachers and gurus I currently don’t feel the need to have a particular guru. Andrew Harvey is spoken of as using moving into the, the age of universal mysticism, which is rather beautiful, the age of universal mysticism, where we for the first time ever able to draw on techniques and knowledge from so many different mystical traditions. And, you know, practice whatever works for one this particular point in time, again, it comes down to if your attitude is pure. If your receptivity is there with an attitude of devotion and service, then I don’t think you can go far wrong with these practices. It’s only when you come into them with perhaps grasping or controlling attitude of mind. You know, you might get into trouble I don’t know around that. But anyway, it is helped to have a guide. But on the other hand, the time has come for us to be our own, are, as you said earlier, our laboratory for these sorts of things. And I love that quote from David Abraham, David, not Abraham, David Abraham, have is really his writing is wonderful if you read his books, the spell of the sensuous and becoming animals and so on, where he, he really writes beautifully about the need to correct connect, reconnect with the sacredness of the natural world. And he says, coming out of that carnally immersed as we are currently immersed as we are in a breathing planet, we each have our own intimate access to the mystery. It’s not beautiful, yeah, Cadley immersed as we are in a breathing planet, we all have our own intimate access to the mystery in other words, we can all feel within our variable and the sacred and the connection to the divine in reality and the divine within ourselves.

Rick Archer: That’s great. So the dogs are probably saying all right, wrap it up mom let’s let’s have this there was something in your book from Christopher you want to read that and

Gillian Ross: left to make this has become my sort of theme song for for telling the story of the you know to a sharing our new story. And I first came across it actually with Jeanne Houston many many years ago, she Sheena Jun Houston, a Boolean way was, you know, reciting it and move me greatly and continues to move me. And it’s a verse from the the English author Christopher Frey, written in about the mid 20th century, but still terribly relevant to this transition time that we’re moving through now, this shift in consciousness. And he wrote, I’m going to close my eyes while I bring it forth and I invite listeners to close their eyes to cold and dark we may be but this is no winter. Now. The frozen misery of centuries, breaks cracks begins to move. The Thunder is the thunder of the flows, the Thor the flood, the upstart spring. So just unpacking that, and it’s wonderful imagery for the meltdown of the patriarchy. And also the idea of the frozen misery of centuries, is like the thawing out, you know, melting or thawing, the spell of solidity. We didn’t talk about that we’re so solid in our perception of things. We know that’s not real anymore. The frozen misery of centuries, he goes on. Thank God our time is now when wrong comes up to meet us everywhere, never to leave us to retake the wide the largest stride of soul folk ever took. Now what a beautiful way of describing this transition from ego, to essence or ego to snowflake, self personal to transpersonal, however you want the largest stride of soul affairs are now soul sized. The Enterprise is exploration into God. What a wonderful way of describing the need for our inner exploration, exploration into God. Where are you making for it takes so many 1000 years to wake. In other words, it’s taken 1000s of years for human consciousness to reach a point where it is ripe to embody the transcendent, where it is ripe to bring forth the evolutionary impulse into the world consciously. Wherever you’re waiting for it takes so many 1000 years to wake, but will you wake For pity’s sake

Rick Archer: it’s great reading along as you did it, and you it was almost perfect. That’s pretty that’s impressive.

Gillian Ross: Well, I know it well, by now darling. Yes, it’s by theme theme song. And may the goddess be with us and help us to be better find better ways of being human? Think Terry Pat lead box with that find better ways of being human? I like it. Yeah,

Rick Archer: yeah. And make hay while the sun shines because as we said earlier, this is a excellent time to make rapid spiritual progress.

Gillian Ross: Well, you didn’t really speak about sacred activism, did we? Because you know, that’s a critical part of the story too, that when we begin to connect, make our connection with the Divine. We’re called forth to bring our unique self out in the spirit of sacred activism, very different from just social activism. You know, Andrew speaks of a whole new force coming in, when we’re able to combine our thirst for justice. This and so on, you know how social activism, with this connection with the divine, it empowers it brings a new energy to it. And it’s even more powerful if we join up with others who are equally in their snowflake selves or in their sacred activism. You know, Christ said when two or more gathered in my name I will be with you, and that that really comes into embodiment with with sacred activism. And that’s what we need. We need help from above, we really do need help from above. We do that through first of all, evolving our own consciousness as Tejada sham shout out, we haven’t mentioned how to shut down without a quote, de Artha shut down. There’s a lovely one of his about this need to engage with the sacredness of Earth and see ourselves as an emanation of an evolutionary story, where he says, Children of earth be steep in the ocean of matter. Bathe, and it’s fine. The waters for it is that ocean that cradled you in your pre conscious existence? And it is that ocean that we’re raising up to God is now beautiful. Yeah, that’s the universe. Yes, yes. And you also said that the time has come, when we’re not just being called to alleviate suffering, we’re being called to do everything we possibly can to raise the power of love upwards to the next level of human evolution. That’s beautiful, too. So all about the power of love.

Rick Archer: That’s great. There’s a categorical page on bat gap calm under past interviews. And under there, there’s a there’s a sacred activism category, which includes Andrew Cohen and Charles eyes know Andrew Harvey and Charles Eisenstein and, and various others. So people want to hear more talk specifically about sacred activism. Check out that. So that’s, that’s great, Julian, I really enjoyed this. You’re the kind of person I would enjoy, like, driving across the country, whether maybe Australia or whatever, just so we can talk for hours and hours and hours and hours. But I

Gillian Ross: am so sad. It’s really sad that you live on the opposite side of the planet. But isn’t it amazing that you know, this is part of our consciousness revolution? There you are on the opposite side of the planet, with this amazing technology with a global audience talking about the consciences of evolution? You know, it’s happening.

Rick Archer: Yeah. I mean, the fact that we’re able to do this is part of the awakening, I think the technology has come up to enable this dissemination of knowledge to to occur.

Gillian Ross: Exactly what I would call the nose fear. The nose fear you didn’t know about the internet, but it’s definitely a precursor of his his vision of the nervous fear. Yeah. Yeah.

Rick Archer: Great, well, positive

Gillian Ross: note to end on a positive note to end on

Rick Archer: what we just said. Yeah, yes, it is. We started out kind of dark, but ending on a positive note. So thanks. Thanks, Julian. And thanks to those who’ve been listening or watching. This is, as you probably know, an ongoing series of conversations with spiritually Awakening people. If you would like to get a little bit more involved, you could subscribe to the YouTube channel and YouTube will notify you. Whenever there’s a new interview posted. I think it even notifies you when I schedule one of these live ones, you get some kind of notification. Also on, there’s a place to sign up to be notified by email each time a new one is posted. And it’s an audio podcast. You mentioned, Jillian, that you like to listen to the audios a lot of people do that while they’re driving or working or whatever. So feel free to subscribe to that on iTunes or Stitcher, whatever works for you. So thanks for listening or watching. Next week, I’m going to be talking about a little bit of a new topic. not new to many people, but new to this show the spiritual implications of extraterrestrials with a guy named Ray Hernandez who worked closely with Edgar Mitchell, the Apollo astronaut, after having had some remarkable personal experiences, and the whole topic intrigues me we’ll see what he has to say. I think it’s part of the whole picture, but in ways that I don’t know if anyone fully understands, but we’ll we’ll explore it next next week. So thanks for listening or watching. And thank you, Julian.

Gillian Ross: Thank you so much for all the wonderful work you’re doing for the consciousness revolution. You really are. It’s amazing. I don’t know how you do it, actually. Yeah, I love talking to so many people reading so many books.

Rick Archer: What more would I rather be doing? Yeah, true. Yeah. It’s great fun. It’s like, I feel like a kid in a candy shop each week is like a whole new person and package of interesting information to explore. And, by the way, while I’m at it, you I praised him in the beginning, but I highly recommend if people have liked this conversation, check out this book. It’s really interesting. It’s a great wealth of beautiful points and beautiful quotes and so on. Interesting book.

Gillian Ross: Well, I must say we’re given the you must have read more books on spirituality than practically anyone else on the planet, given what you do. I’m enormously flattered that you’ve enjoyed my book. I really am. It’s a great compliment.

Rick Archer: Oh, I really have I really do if, as I said in the beginning, if I could write a book I want to, if I end up ever writing, what it’ll contain a lot of the kinds of points that that are in yours, it’s it’s really important information.

Gillian Ross: Perhaps I can help you with that. Great. How would you fight it?

Rick Archer: Get on my case. Alright, so thank you all, and we’ll see you next week.