018. Jim Flanegin

I was born in California 55 years ago. After only 90 days on earth, I moved with my family to live in Penang, Seville, Djakarta, Manila, and Hong Kong, where my father served as a diplomat in the US Foreign Service.

While searching for a way to reconstitute and integrate myself after so much travel, I learned TM in 1975 (Corvallis, Ore.) and have continued my practice, twice daily, ever since.

I met and married my first wife in Washington D.C. in 1984, and returned to California 17 years ago to pursue opportunities as a global technical training manager for high-tech communications, virtualization, and security companies.

After a lifetime of creating visual art (colored pencil, wood carving, pen and ink), I recently discovered composing, and publishing music; putting my experiences and thoughts in sound, using as many genres as makes sense (techno, classical, modern, jazz, rock, world music.) Transcending forms the basis of my songs. Temple Dog is my artist name and I have just released my fourth album, Beam, through CD Baby, also on iTunes.

I live in Santa Clara Valley (formerly known as the Valley of Heart’s Delight), oranges and avocados in our sunny yard of plants and flowers, with the Buddha, and enjoy a wonderful relationship with my second wife, and my daughter, now 19 and in college.

I realize I haven’t said much about my spiritual liberation, and will let the interview speak for itself…

Interview recorded 4/18/2010. Audio and video below and as a Podcast.

Video also available on Facebook in 20-minute segments.

14 thoughts on “018. Jim Flanegin

  1. Interesting thing about the stories. I certainly saw this in myself, but more from a place of trying to figure out what was going on. If I could figure it out, I could manage it. Certainly the aspect of making wrong to make oneself right though.

    Gangaji spoke similarly of a willingness to being seen. That quite hit home for me. Spiritual development is a kind of “coming out” in a number of ways.

    Some interesting remarks about how it unfolded and how it was interpreted. Similar steps I’ve seen but seen in a different way. Good to hear another viewpoint.

    Had a fab laugh about the comment that ‘you better get rid of bad habits before liberation because afterward you’re not going to give a damn’. Agreed. Great example too.

    (laughs) Good point – ‘as long as you feel you’re progressing on your path and you’re being true to yourself’.

    An interesting mixture of the practical and grounded with the woo woo (laughs)

    Thanks Jim. Thanks Rick.

  2. I was thinking further about the food remarks you made. I have noticed it’s much simpler if I just pay attention to what the body is asking for. Skip all the old rules. It surprises me sometimes, but it handles purification, grounding, nutrition, and growth. I just have to be careful I’m not being mindless with food as I often eat while I work.

  3. Rick I listened to this via the download button and the interview quit after about 58 min.

    Great though. I just love what you are doing. I’ve turned all my TM teacher friends from NJ onto the interviews.


  4. Sorry it cut off. No one else has reported that. You might want to download the mp3 or subscribe to the Podcast. Thanks for telling your friends. I expect this to spread primarily through word of mouth.

  5. I was thinking further about the food remarks you made. I have noticed it’s much simpler if I just pay attention to what the body is asking for. Skip all the old rules. It surprises me sometimes, but it handles purification, grounding, nutrition, and growth. I just have to be careful I’m not being mindless with food as I often eat while I work.

  6. Hi Rick, Yeah it is sometimes hard to tell the difference between being responsible and getting in the way!!

    Yeah, I still buy and eat food when I want to consume something mindlessly, though I am certainly later mindful of the effects! I allow myself to do pretty much what I want wrt diet. It doesn’t work to push stuff away. The easier process is to lose interest over time as a result of familiarity.

  7. I am sorry it cut off for me too at a point I really wanted to hear what was next..maybe this would be true at any point it cut off
    I especially loved the part about not needing exotic experiences as the beauty of the orange juice filling the glass had the same impact as previous peak experiences..I find this deeper level of enjoyment in the mundane world so profound, glad you expressed it, I notice it especially when I am driving to work in the morning and the radio is playing classical music ..especially string instruments..it feels like my body turns into the strings..I feel the vibration, I become the vibration and the bliss of my body, the cells of my body, melting into space and and exploding into this act of vibration..this resonance becomes all that I am, all that I am…well, it does thrill me beyond the beyond.
    .so thank you for pointing out that the peaks now come in the daily experience of life..
    the word “spiritual” has lost its meaning for me..it is all spiritual, and also, none of it is spiritual..there is no distinction any more..

  8. I don’t know why you’re all experiencing this cutting off. The audio file appears to be uploaded in its entirety. Are you listening to it as a streaming file off the site, or downloading the file to your computer and then listening? The latter method should prevent any cutting off.

  9. Because of the size of the file, it’s possible people are running out of memory for the streaming version. As you suggest Rick, the download would probably work better then.

  10. Just a heads up – the new version of the video is 1.9 GB. Unless you have a good bit of system memory, you’ll find download best.

  11. I was also a person who moved around much, with both good and bad experiences (until age 15 I had never experienced any close ‘bonding’ with others my age. For some reason, the psychological struggle that would stay with me for many years (until about age 33) was similar to yours. I also had a time where the egoic rationalization finally began to come to an end. I time came that I could no longer maintain any sense of reason (as if I just wore that part out in my brain somewhere) to any great degree and had to separate myself from things familiar. It took be me a good 7 years, being on my own (for the most part), to recover a sense of ‘me’ again. That was a very healing time and very necessary just so I could ‘give life another try’. During that 7 year period of healing (a healing that could not be called that until I began to recognize it later on in that experience because I was simply too messed up) there were many shifts whose sole purpose was to ‘restate’ some identification that I had seemed to loose (for earlier in my life I had experienced an awakening experience that was always somewhere in the back of my mind reminding me that there was something far greater than me able to help me in some way). Thank you for you sharing. Good to know that others have similar things happen to them. I wonder what it is about when the inability to create friendships, because of lots of moving around (different locales) during ‘impressionable’ years, seems to cause this very strong need to create stories within oneself? But maybe that is not the cause, at all, and something else is a cause (never as simple as it seems, sometimes). Any thoughts Jim?

  12. Hi clark369,

    I have often thought that I had the best childhood in the world, once I survived it. 🙂 To steep myself in so many cultures from birth, exposure and experience of so many exotic places was like dwelling in an earthly paradise. Yet, as you say, it can leave us feeling as if we have lost our foundation.

    I was always ridiculously independent as a child, disappearing all day into the mountains of Java, where we spent nearly every week-end away from the heat of Djakarta, wandering through villages and across rice paddies at five and six, galloping mountain ponies past hills planted with tea at eight years old, so I came to strongly trust just myself and my experience.

    Later on as puberty hit and life’s complications multiplied (heh), I discovered much to my delight that I could solve all of my problems by dividing the world into ‘us’ and ‘them’, ‘them’ being the source of all my unhappiness. It worked for awhile, with multiple embellishments and distinctions, all supported by what by then had grown into a system of beliefs, even absolutes.

    Having always been pretty good at self-reflection, it nonetheless took me decades to wake up to the fact that those in the ‘them’ category comprised *everyone else*, and the ‘us’ category was down to just *me*, or at best the enemy of my enemy was my friend.

    Seeing that for what it was, the paradigm immediately collapsed under the overwhelming weight of its own illusion.
    My awareness was then free from that grip, and has been since.
    Personal development never stops, though now it moves in the direction of inclusiveness vs. exclusiveness.

    Thank you for writing!

  13. Hi Andrew,

    When is a story ever absolutely true?

    On the other hand, I so love to live within the infinite story of my magical life, always larger than I can imagine, ever expanding, mysterious, and comforting and familiar at the same time.

    Why not explore all of it, even knowing that it all leads back to Us? The Dream of God, a beautiful story.:-)

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