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Rick Archer: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer, and my guest today is Karen McPhee. Welcome, Karen. Nice to be here, Rick. Yeah, well introduce character in more detail in a minute. I just want to say in general that this is a show on which people who have had or are in the process of having spiritual awakening are interviewed, there have been over 300 of them now. And if you’re new to this, go to batgap.com. And you’ll see them all archived in various ways under the past interviews menu. These shows, if done on Skype are also live streams that people can watch and send in questions that they would like me to ask on the upcoming interviews page, there’s a form at the bottom that you can fill out to submit a question. And the whole thing is supported by appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you feel like helping to support it, there’s a Donate button there. So I enjoyed preparing for Karen’s interview, she has had quite a life and is still having one. And it has been through an awful lot. And so this, I think this interview will turn out to be somewhat biographical, and also just a lot of interesting knowledge that will come out which Karen has a master’s she’s gone through life. So with Karen, we can start pretty young. She said that, from a very young age, she could sense and see the invisible energetic dimension from and had the awareness of presence in early childhood. Then you had, maybe you’d like to elaborate on that before I go on to the next one.
Karen McPhee: Well, there’s one scene that comes to mind where, you know, it was really vivid, and I was very young, maybe three or four, and someone came up behind me, and I couldn’t hear them or see them. But I felt their presence and I knew what they’re feeling what they were thinking. And at the same time, just aware of this huge space of stillness in which it was all happening. So it was it was very vivid.
Rick Archer: Must have been for you to, for you to have remembered it.
Karen McPhee: It’s still here now. Yeah. You know, don’t you find that? Those moments of timelessness I mean, they’re timeless. So it’s always available? But yeah,
Rick Archer: yeah, I had one when I was a really little kid, I must have been under three, where I was so convinced that I was actually able to fly around the house up and down the stairs and all that I remember having an argument my mother, but yeah, I fly, you know, and she’s no dear you don’t fly. I can still remember the experience of actually zooming up the stairs and so on. So I must have been some kind of out of body thing or something. Oh, that’s so cool. I love that. Great and so true.
Karen McPhee: I mean, when we’re when we’re in our energy body, or whatever you want to call it, we are flying, right?
Rick Archer: Yeah. And you literally can, I believe, can even do it in your physical one. If you’re if you’re, you know, evolved enough. Then, I mean, skipping quite a few years here, at the age of 16, you had a cancer diagnosis and that you count that as a significant milestone.
Karen McPhee: It really was. Yeah, almost everything between the first experience we talked about not is kind of a blur, really, but that it stands out again, because I think I might have shared that with you. There was a moment. I don’t remember where it was in the process. It might have been, I don’t know if it’s before or after the surgery. Can’t remember anyway. Bottom line once for
Rick Archer: the cancer. Yeah. Am I asking what kind of cancer was?
Karen McPhee: Yeah, and when you see this guy there? Yeah. So I remember when I got the call, uh, you know, the doctor said on the phone, hey, you’ve got cancer and it was like you, you know, the humanness was pretty shocked. I remember just passing the phone to my dad like, but partway through there was this moment when I standing outside in our driveway, actually, and I everything just got perfectly still. And this knowing arose that this life was not going to be what I thought it was.
Rick Archer: It’s kind of unusual for a young girl to get thyroid cancer, isn’t it?
Karen McPhee: Probably not where we lived. It was it was we didn’t live there long, but it was a fairly I don’t think Common but not as uncommon environmental toxins. Yeah. Yeah, probably probably, although there’s some propensity, I think my great grandmother might have had something there and so genetic as well. But it was really interesting because I, you know, you can always tell it in hindsight, that moment was the moment when awareness woke up and to some degree and realize, okay, white picket fence, kids, whatever. That’s not what this is about. And somehow, I felt like I had been removed from normal life. And I didn’t know what it meant at the time, but it was it was just a vivid and clear space of awareness and knowing.
Rick Archer: And that impression stayed with you as the, as the four year old impression also stayed, right.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, this one, though, I would say it was probably pretty covered over for a long time. I mean, it was there. But things became pretty turbulent for a while. And there was about a 10 year period after that of dealing with stuff. So yeah, but yeah,
Rick Archer: I think I also heard you say you were raped at the age of 13 or something, right?
Karen McPhee: Yeah, I didn’t put that in the bio I sent you. I’ve purposely left a few things out that I didn’t necessarily want to talk about here. But hey, that’s okay. I just trust whatever happened is fine. Don’t worry, right. It’s fine. Yeah. I just, there is a little bit of consciousness of sometimes when we talk about things that can trigger trauma, but you know what, whatever happens, here’s perfect. Yes. So that happened before actually the cancer.
Rick Archer: Yeah. About three years before. It’s it’s kind of interesting is the wrong word. But it’s, there’s a number of people whom I’ve interviewed who have gone through that. And I’ve want to interview Joan Harrigan on Kundalini video. One of the things she says can somehow catalyze or trigger a Kundalini awakening is some kind of severe trauma. Not that we would wish that upon anyone, but it can be the cause of jolting the the Kundalini out of dormancy or something. Have you heard that?
Karen McPhee: I sure have. And I love that interview, by the way, it was great. You know, when and if you look at it sort of from the energetic the chakras all the whole, which, you know, I don’t claim to be an expert at and, you know, we could say, Was it really a coincidence that when the counselor happened here, because as part of that violation, I was choked? And of course, then there’s the thing about expression and whatever. So yeah, yeah.
Rick Archer: Interesting. Okay, then in your early 20s, you tried psychotherapy, which started to create greater self awareness. And then later in your 20s, someone gave you a book on meditation. Perhaps I should have paused after the first bit psychotherapy in case there’s anything you wanted to say about that?
Karen McPhee: Well, actually, you know, it’s just really useful. If you have a conscious practitioner, which I did, they can really help. I don’t know, a couple of ways. One is to to help see through more of that fictional sense of self and encouraged self awareness. So yeah, actually, it was very helpful. You start to notice what was previously previously unconscious?
Rick Archer: Yeah. And in general, it sounds like you were, I don’t know if you would have called yourself a seeker. But you were, I mean, you were like, the white picket fence wasn’t enough, as you said, and you were kind of like, looking for deeper meaning and resolution of
Karen McPhee: Oh, absolutely. That is common the whole way through. Yeah, yeah. And the other thing that there was also a sort of a darkness that had come on me when I was younger, I again, I didn’t write about this, but you could call it a depression or something, but there was like a darkness. And if it did, on one hand, you know, you could say it was harmful, or help suppress the expression of self. But on the other hand, it was another thing that was bringing me into this other awareness of Whoa, you know, just doing the things normal people do that’s not fulfilling and there was something again, I just felt separated from all of that. And that that theme kept coming up over and over as well.
Rick Archer: Yeah. As if you were kind of shrouded or, or
Karen McPhee: until Yeah, until around the time we’re tight with that extent. You know, there were those moments of clarity. But yes, there was that there was something that was pushing, looking back on it now. It seems like some it was like a sort of protracted dark night of the soul. Something was trying to come through the dark to the light. Yeah. And so the dark actually had a purpose and that sense.
Rick Archer: I think everything has a purpose.
Karen McPhee: No argument here. Yeah,
Rick Archer: I mean, there’s no coincidence and no accident. Okay. It’s So then somebody gave me a book on meditation. You remember what that book was?
Karen McPhee: I don’t remember what it was called. But it was someone who was related to Edgar Casey, his partner. And she Yeah, but no, I sorry, I don’t remember what it’s called.
Rick Archer: That’s okay. But somehow or other the book was adequate. I know, when I first started getting into meditation, I was reading books and trying this and that, and I just couldn’t get into it. But it sounds like you actually, were able to just naturally get into a state of meditation,
Karen McPhee: pretty much right away. Yeah. And I it’s not like I became really devoted to the practice or anything, but I, I just knew this was important. Now, something else that happened right at the same time, I was in a situation that was rather challenging. And to give a little spooky here, the other thing that happened was, I would wake up in the middle of the night, and I would feel, let’s say someone touching my arm, and then they’d come fully awake. And I’d still be feeling it, and there’d be no person standing there. And later, I realized it was angels. And they started to communicate with me and give me some life guidance. So that kind of all happened around the same time.
Rick Archer: Nice. I think I recall you saying that, either now or at times in your life, you have rather routinely perceived angels or other subtle beings, is that correct?
Karen McPhee: Yes. Yeah. And the work that I do now, it’s, it’s very much part of it. Yeah, I just sort of lumped that all in to call it the other dimension, just because it’s, you know, it’s obviously more than one dimension, but just to sort of differentiate it from our normal consciousness. But yes,
Rick Archer: I think it’s important, though, I mean, without getting all hung up on it, and obsessed with it, because it’s like, an analogy I thought of as if we wanted to sort of understand how big the Pacific Ocean is, for instance, we could like imagine how far it is to Japan and how far it is up to Alaska and wait way down to Antarctica and on, we kind of get a sense of the surface area of the Pacific Ocean. But if we do that, without considering how deep it is, it’s like, we’ve just covered the most superficial aspect of it in a way how deep it is, and what it contains. And it’s sort of like that with talking about life. And, you know, there’s this vertical dimension, or this subtle dimension, which is just teeming with, with life and intelligence. And, and most people are completely unaware of it. Which
Karen McPhee: I love that metaphor of the ocean, because it’s infinitely deep. And I love that it’s beautiful. And, you know, ultimately, it’s all one but the one is expressing, you know, as you often say, as, as all of this, whether we can see it or not. So, besides I have no control over it. It’s always sort of in your writing. Most of the time, so yeah. Just
Rick Archer: we’ll move on from this. But another analogy I think of is, you know, imagine if aliens landed on the White House lawn, what a big deal that would be, or Prime Minister’s lawn or whatever you have in Canada. It’s like the this huge news story because wow, other beings exist besides the human. And, you know, yeah, here we are completely surrounded by, you know, fast, teeming horde of subtle beings, whom the vast majority of people don’t see and don’t even know exist. And you know, they’re, they’re all around us. And that should be a big news story.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, well, actually, wasn’t that on the cover of Life or times or something? Do angels exist or something? Yeah. And suddenly, you know, 80% of the people believe in them or whatever. So maybe it’s more than we think.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Anyway, that’s a bit of a sidelight. But um, it’s interesting to me. All right. So then you, you’re watching PBS, you can see I did my homework. And you heard Deepak Chopra, say, become aware of the one who was watching and you immediately popped out the back of your body and into the witness. Let’s talk about that a little bit.
Karen McPhee: Essentially, because every time I share that, a group or whatever, usually somebody will have the experience as well. So let’s, let’s do that again. Okay. Now? Yeah. So he said, become aware of the one who is watching. And here it is. Yeah. Nice.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Now, in your case, when you had that shift, it never left you. But to play devil’s advocate, there are people who advocate and people who listen to them who tried to. They make a conscious effort throughout the day, to be aware of the one who’s watching be aware of the one who’s watching and to me that speaks of a sort of manipulation that is kind of unnatural. I bet you that in your case, it’s not something you have had to do, ever since. We’re seeing that TV show with Deepak it’s just something that has been kind of a natural feature of your of your way of functioning. Am I right?
Karen McPhee: Well, boy, this is, as you know, record pretty challenging to talk about. And the way I look at it is, it really depends on what’s happening. You know, there’s no problem with getting completely immersed in whatever you’re focusing on whatever your activity is, whatever trauma is coming up. So it’s not, but that’s always there. And there’s sort of a confidence in it over time. Right, that you don’t, it’s sort of like, you don’t have to keep checking, because it’s just there. It’s known. Yeah,
Rick Archer: like breathing, or like, like being cleaner, because you took a shower in the morning, you know? I mean, yeah, it’s just there.
Karen McPhee: It’s just there. And so there’s not a seeking for it. And there is also a loving of it. So I still love to just be quiet, be silent, and sort of almost luxuriate, in that, you know, and it’s delicious.
Rick Archer: Or another example would be like, being awake, and the ordinary waking state. I mean, you wake up in the morning, and you go through your day, and you don’t have to keep thinking, I am awake, I’m awake, I’m not sleeping, I’m awake. You know, it’s just you’re in the waking state. And it’s just the natural way you are until you go to sleep. So to me that higher consciousness or witnessing or any of these things, should be that natural?
Karen McPhee: Well, and it is, yeah, all that ever happens is our attention goes elsewhere. So it’s pretty basic. Really? Yeah, that’s my take on it anyway.
Rick Archer: And the reason I make the point of it is I think people can tie themselves up in knots, kind of manipulating their mind and trying to do two things at once. And, Oh, who am I and yet I have to make this phone call. And, you know, there’s like this sort of, it actually increases mental agitation sometimes if people go about it in a kind of an unnatural way. Because that’s my little pet peeve.
Karen McPhee: Yeah. And I think sometimes with practice is we, you know, there’s a there is a almost like a period of sort of like a, you know, a bridge, right? Where you, you have a realization, and there’s a period of sort of stabilizing or embodying it, let’s say, and so during that period, it can be like, you know, awkward, or it seems like it has to be intentional, you have to write, but that’s, you know, we can talk about how true that is. But that’s the experience. And then, you know, it’s like, what’s that thing, I’ve learned this in coaching, but it’s in psychology to sort of unconscious, incompetence, conscious incompetence, conscious. I forget how it goes until you get to the point where you’re like, when you’re learning to drive it standard. Yeah, at first, you have to think of all of your to feed and whatever. And then after a while, you can shift without thinking about it. Shift gears, right. It’s like that. So you do have to be intentional for a while often, depending on what’s happened. And then yeah, then it becomes more more natural.
Rick Archer: Yeah, point well taken. I mean, sports are like that, too. Like, if you’re learning to ski there, you know, you have to, you might be taking lessons and you’re kind of paying attention to your technique and everything. And then after a while, it gets kind of the muscle memory, you know, just kind of automatic and you don’t think about it much you just spontaneously do it the right way.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Okay, so why would it be any different? You know, because we’re sort of training the mind or whatever. So same,
Rick Archer: yeah. And from what all we know about neuroplasticity, and so on, it’s we are literally sculpting the brain as as and establishing new grooves so to speak and the way it functions. Sure, yeah. Okay, good. Okay, so after your Deepak awakening, you said, Everything began to accelerate, you began having spontaneous awakenings or insights that were quite transformative. I talked about a few of those.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, we’ll see what comes up as long time ago. But yeah, it’s, it was a really intense period, I have to say, and a couple things happen. One is I, I met someone who became my partner who had been with a guru. And so up until that time, I was just going around not knowing what was happening to me. And he came along, so he was able to sort of put some context around what was happening, but, and he was also really, very present and conscious. So that was probably supportive as well. But I remember one time in particular a couple times, where just it’s like the, you know, reality just woke up. And I mean, the awareness of what’s actually happening here, sort of just became known for the first time, not just that background of awareness, but what’s happening here in the apparent world of form. And so one time I was sitting in the backseat of a car and we’re driving down the road, and I just turned and look beside me and suddenly really went into you know, just unity consciousness and recognize the person beside me. and I were one that was beautiful. It was pure love. And then I noticed, I actually could see the full egoic structure operating, that they were so boxed in with their reality and identified, I can see it was weird on how I saw it. But I knew they were identified with their card. This is me and mine, and their body, and purposefully ignoring or denying the oneness with me and all of life. So it was the first time I actually saw, you know, the ego and how it works. And it was it was quite shocking. Chris, first time I saw it externally, then later, I would see it in myself. But yeah, it was like, Wow,
Rick Archer: interesting. Yeah, cute. I’m thinking of a poem right now who’s, you know, the, we’re ordinarily boxed up in the chinks of our cavern. I forget. Anyway, you almost made it sound like that’s intentional, that one is kind of in one’s ego. And here’s my car, and this is me, but it’s something that one has to hold on to it to keep it going that way. And that if if you relaxed, it would, it would go away?
Karen McPhee: Wow, that’s really neat. You picked up on that. And so it’s not, I would say it’s not conscious. Right. So in that, on that level, we couldn’t say that person’s intentionally doing that. It’s just maybe we’ll say learned, right? How the identification starts to happen. So bitchu ated. Yeah. But there’s something there that knows it’s doing it, but we’re not conscious of it. That’s that’s kind of what the experience was. Yeah. Does that resonate? Rick,
Rick Archer: it does. And if it were truly intentional, then, you know, in a totally conscious way, then it would should be something we should just be able to drop at a moment’s notice when when it was pointed out to us or when we wanted to drop it. But obviously, that’s not people’s experience.
Karen McPhee: Exactly. It’s not conscious. And that’s why in these moments of illumination, that’s when it seemed the rest of the time. I had never seen that before. Right. So yeah, it was just, you know, there’s a teaching called the Miracle of Love. And, you know, the masters of that, who, since passed over, they talk about as the illusion. I’m not an expert in their teaching, but it’s just that just popped into my mind. It’s like, you know, we don’t know how we’re creating this sense of separation, because there’s sort of they talk about sort of a mass illusion, and then maybe a personal experience of that, or Joel Goldsmith talks about the world mind. hypnosis. So it is it’s a kind of hypnosis, but we’re not conscious of it. Neither would be someone who’s been hypnotized, you know, on stage or something, right, they wouldn’t be aware that they’re going around barking, like a pool, or whatever it is.
Rick Archer: I think, zooming out to a cosmic perspective on if, if really, if we take non duality seriously, and if it’s really all one, you know, if we are Gods sort of having a human experience, or then then it almost seems like consciousness intentionally shrouds itself in the process of interacting with itself in and thereby giving rise to the appearance of forms, and embodying itself in those forms. But it’s just part of the divine play.
Karen McPhee: Sounds good to me. So we’re just really talking about that place where I mean, it’s one thing if you if there’s an underlying realization of oneness, and that this, this separation is an appearance, obviously, that’s a very different experience than then believing we’re separate. Cut off from the source. So it’s sort of it’s maybe we could say, there was while the word that just came to me was corruption. Not sure like that, but maybe a distortion would be better on top of whatever conscious and of course, yeah, if there is only God, what else omnipresence. Right, what else could there be? But a lot of teachings talk about how this distortion happens. And it limits our experience. So I don’t know.
Rick Archer: Yeah, no, that’s good. There’s a there’s a Sanskrit word phrase pragyaparadh which means mistake of the intellect and that at some kind of primordial initial initial emergence level, a mistake is made and then that that that corruption as to use your word gets sort of multiplied and magnified and more and more and more and meshed in in delusion as as greater and greater apparent diversification happens, and then we have to retrace our steps eventually.
Karen McPhee: What you said sure.
Rick Archer: Okay, so you took Reiki classes, and
Karen McPhee: okay, Yeah, sorry, let’s go back for a second. So during that period, there were quite a few moments of that of just seeing through this sort of fictional part. It’s mind made separation. And but there was this also real increase in intensity going on. And seeking and looking for, you know, what is this? And how does it become stable, and I was introduced to a number of teachers and books and all of that. So it was a really potent time.
Rick Archer: Yeah, this what age range? Were you in then?
Karen McPhee: Early 30s, I guess, something like
Rick Archer: that. And did you find that? Well, you said you were in a relationship with this guy. I was going to ask, as a broader question, flew out of context, who we’re talking about right now. But whether you have found all this intensity, and all this kind of evolutionary fervor to have been conducive, or not conducive in conducive to relationships, you know, partnerships, and so on.
Karen McPhee: Wow, good question. It’s not what I thought you’re gonna ask, that’s funny. I thought you’re gonna ask if it was conducive to, you know, awakening, or whatever we
Rick Archer: want to call a conducive to that I would say yeah,
Karen McPhee: yeah. Um,
Rick Archer: sometimes people find it hard to straddle both worlds, you know, the, the kind of pedal to the metal awakening track with some semblance of normalcy and the world track.
Karen McPhee: Well, okay. And so in my case, I would say that this wasn’t a normal relationship. It was really all about the spiritual unfoldment. And that was really our common ground. And there was love and all of that stuff. But no. And it was, I think, pretty clear that very soon anyway, after that this was the priority.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Do you mind my asking? And is it relevant? What guru that guy had been with?
Karen McPhee: Adi Da. Oh, for some reason, I was thinking that. Where do you see are you picking up on the psychic realm there? And also someone I can’t remember his name off the top, but someone who was with Maharishi as well, because my partner had been to NYU and I think he got his degree there. And he was, he did all the cities and was a advanced practitioner, whatever you call that system.
Rick Archer: Interesting. Yeah. There’s several people. I’ve interviewed her without it on, but he was a conundrum. But
Karen McPhee: oh, I agree. Yeah, definitely. I was never attracted there. But it was just again, having been in that whole realm, it was helpful to me because he had the experience with Maharishi and Rati. Don, and this other fellow that he was with, yeah.
Rick Archer: Okay, so then I was gonna start talking about the Reiki classes and the the visitations from divine beings, which seemed to result from awakenings. And that the Reiki was triggering.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, how that ended up happening was I was staying with my parents for a while. And my dad brought this book home, called healing from the inside out by Sherry pearl. And he’d seen it at the library. And it was a young woman who had also been ill in her 20s. I don’t remember her illness was cancer as well. But when I read it, it opened up this whole other thing about the pot and she had been healed by famous you’re from England, whose name escapes me at the moment. And so it just, it that’s what sort of planted the seeds that led to me apparently taking the the healing, training, Reiki and whatever else. And so it was, it was it’s funny a couple of times in the unfoldment. And this was one of them. I went to a public talk on Reiki, and I got up and I felt hands there was nobody standing there. So we’re talking angelic or whatever, hands pushing me forward to go and talk to the teacher. And I just heard myself say, Okay, I’m signing out. So it was one of those things where I wasn’t driving that bus. And it just it happened. And it turned out really great. Because with each level you study, there’s something called an attunement. And with each attunement, I had openings, awakenings, whatever you want to call them. And I had visitations from beings from other dimensions that were informing me about my path, and that this was part of it. And it was very pure, the energy and the experience, so I feel like it was significant somehow.
Rick Archer: That’s the adventure some people are thinking now Gee, I wish I’d have visitations from beings from other dimensions who informed me about my path. But I have a friend who quite routinely sees all the subtle stuff and he says that In any given situation, there are more subtle beings in a room than there are gross beings that each of us have, like, usually two or three of them in attendance that are kind of helping us in ways that he doesn’t fully understand. But that seems very important.
Karen McPhee: I would agree with that completely. And when we get to talking, but the when I started doing what I’m doing now, the room is pretty much packed when I’m doing a session, and it’s not something I invoke or anything, it just, it just happens. And I agree with your friend. It’s not like it’s understood. It’s just, you know, it’s, it’s wonderful. And it’s helpful, and it’s a real privilege to be aware of it. I think we all are just, you know, it’s just tuning into that channel.
Rick Archer: Yeah, I was communicating with a friend the other day, who is like myself, old, ex TM teacher, but um, we do a ceremony of gratitude when we instructed people in TM, and we’d kind of recite the Names of the tradition of Masters going back 1000s of years, from whom that teaching came. And she said, Well, you know, when you did that, didn’t you see them in the room? And I said, No, I didn’t. There was a profound feeling, but I didn’t see them in the room. She said, Well, you were invoking them, they all came, you know. So they’re all They’re all there on the other side, if we want to call it that, and, you know, they can be invoked, and, you know, can intercede or have various influences.
Karen McPhee: Yes. And it’s wonderful actually makes life very rich. Yeah. So, when I started doing Reiki, I didn’t realize that. I don’t know. I don’t have sort of, you know, a belief system about this. But is it a useful metaphor, whether it’s true or not, is if we talked about past lives? You know, it’s like, maybe this was where it came in from medicine you brought in from other life, but from pretty much the first time I did a treatment, this other vision opened up, and I could see people’s departed loved ones, or one time, I was working on a pregnant woman. And it was like watching the Discovery Channel, I suddenly was like, watching this cameras pan down the fetus and saw the sex of the baby and the color of its hair and things that they all prove true. So I’m like, I didn’t know it was extraordinary. But it was a time of great delight and wonder and like, wow, this is amazing. So yeah, that’s cool.
Rick Archer: We’re gonna, we’re gonna get to a point in your story where all this goes away, at least for a while. So just tipping people off to that. But, you know, I mean, would you? Would you agree with this? Would you say that all this stuff is wonderful and interesting if it’s happening, but that it shouldn’t, people shouldn’t make it a goal to, you know, put that their first priority to see this subtle stuff? If it happens as a side effect of a deeper shift that’s taking place then then great.
Karen McPhee: I completely agree with that. Yeah. Yeah. For me, it’s not, it’s not something that we as an apparent individual are want to be driving. We’re we’re almost like recipients or instruments or whatever is more as more appropriate. So yeah, I never go looking for it. It’s just there. Yeah. So just one other thing that comes to mind, I’m not sure if I put this in the notes. But that happened when I was doing Reiki that one it there were a couple things that caused a big turn in my life. One of which was, while doing a Reiki session, I went, first of all, I started to notice after a while that I was taking credit for it, so some ego was getting in there. So that was noticed. So that was kind of like okay, red flag. But at the same time, paradoxically, what was also happening is this desire to serve the selfless sense of selfless service was coming up and my heart was really breaking open. And I was feeling this incredible love for people when I was working on them. And this one session in particular, I think it might have been the last one I did. I just completely disappeared into love and, you know, being a divine instrument, and it was just there was nobody there. It was just love. And so that that was like, Okay, this is what’s important, not being a healer, or any of the rest of this. It’s about serving and it’s about love, love that.
Rick Archer: Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. That’s it for St. Francis.
Karen McPhee: That’s it wreck. Amen to that. Absolutely. And that really almost erupted from my heart and building for a long time. And in this one particular session, it reached this intensity of wow, this that’s all and also of course, a recognition of oneness. Yeah.
Rick Archer: That’s beautiful. You know, I mean, again, if it’s all consciousness, then we are all instruments of the Divine. But the Divine is multi-phase You know, and as Bob Dylan saying, you’re gonna have to serve somebody, it may be the devil or it may be the Lord but you’re gonna have to serve somebody and you You know, so it’s like it’s a blessing and I think a choice to certain extent to put oneself in the service of the sort of the, the more positive qualities that would that the divine would like to infuse into the world. Of course, there also needs to be destructive qualities and so on, because it’s a world of polarities. But it’s it’s kind of, you know, better to be on the white hat team, in my opinion, as far as one’s own enjoyment is concerned.
Karen McPhee: Sure, I’ll second that motion.
Rick Archer: Okay, so I like the way we’re doing this where I’m reading stuff, but you’re kind of interjecting, if there’s something that you know, I’m leaving out or that your notes are leaving out. So your meditations were deepening your spiritual search is intensifying, sitting for hours a day and having many insights and releases. Nice quote from an undermine Mark came along, it touched you the core, it was something about stopping short of nothing, but prior to full self realization, and that all the experiences could be a distraction from that main goal.
Karen McPhee: Right. And so that sort of coincided with that experience, I was just describing of breaking open into love and the desire to serve as an you know, the selflessness at the same time, that quote came to me, and I had been sitting longer and longer each day. And just going deeper and deeper into that inner reality. It was pretty blissful, as I’m sure you know. But those two things came together. And then it’s like, I don’t know, it’s been a long time. But probably the experience was that I just completely lost interest. In that other dimension. I think so many other teachings, were saying, you know, this stuff is a distraction, once their self realisation then you can do what you want. Yeah. And it just there was the yearning was there anyway. And between that and that, that’s selfless service, that recognition of oneness. I just got, it’s almost like the search got really focused and amped up at that point.
Rick Archer: But constantly says that in the Yoga Sutras actually says that, you know, the, this involvement with celestial beings can can be a distraction, or can be a stumbling block, you know, can get caught up in it. way late on your path.
Karen McPhee: I yeah, I think that’s true. And I’ve certainly seen it. And perhaps I had an advantage in the sense that I never went seeking for that it just showed up. And I always saw it as an incredible gift or bonus, you know, but the true seeking for Enlightenment, or whatever we want to call it. That was the thing that was primary. Yeah. So it’s pretty easy to but it’s interesting, because many years later, they’ll probably come up. But many years later, this curiosity started coming, okay. Where did all that stuff go? Because it was like, you know, everything withers from disuse,
Rick Archer: which we give our attention growth strong. down in New Orleans, they when you buy something that they’ll throw something a little extra in the bag, and it’s called the land Yap, and always remember that word. But um, so you know, all this flashy stuff, is just a little something extra that might get thrown in the bag as we go along. But it’s not the main product that you’re going for.
Karen McPhee: That’s wonderful. I love that.
Rick Archer: Okay, so then, a major awakening happened through the breakup of that relationship that you referred to your heart broke open into a greater love and you fell into God communion. So powerful that repercussions of it echoed through the next 15 years. So everybody has been through breakups. And it’s something that people want to understand more and perhaps, would appreciate understanding the evolutionary significance of rather rather than seeing it as merely a trauma or heartbreak. So let’s talk about that a little bit.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, and please forgive me, because I don’t actually remember what happened in what order so I might have it a little bit out of order there doesn’t matter. Well, the first thing was that, that that relationship on the human level was very challenging, spiritually was great, but there were some issues really big issues, and one of them was in the area of commitment or lack thereof. And you know, I could see it very differently now. But you know, it’s the commitment here was actually forgot anyway. So to accuse the other of being uncommitted was, you know, a little questionable anyway, but for some reason, life is that, as you said, there’s only life and so this intensity came and when, but I think part of it was because this man wasn’t just my partner. He was my mentor, my guru, my guide You know, it was there was so much more to it.
Rick Archer: That could have been 100% the case, because you’ve got so much going on that you must have been his god to very great extent as well.
Karen McPhee: Well, how lovely for you to say, and perhaps that’s true. And and we’d have to ask, and maybe we can patch him in later but but for me at first, I was much younger and very new to the spiritual journey. So thank you, Rick, we can clarify that with, you know, he’d been on the journey for what, 1020 years, whatever was older than I, and I was in this lifetime in this lifetime. Thank you for clarifying. Yeah, exactly right, in this lifetime. So there was sort of that position of the, you know, when you’ve got an artist and his protege, or whatever it was that that was an unbalanced footing that we were standing on because of that. And you’re absolutely right, it was really just a experiential or perception, but for sure, there was a lot going on here. So I’m sure that had an effect as well. And he certainly has told me that. However, on the human level, there was some old programming or whatever playing and suddenly, I was like, Okay, I just something needed to balance that sense of disempowerment from being in that uneven footing. So there was a breakup, but and there was incredible pain, partly because of how much more he was, to me was also sort of a father figure, even though I have a great relationship with my father. Anyway, so it’s again, life used that and there was a real deep despair and breakdown was very intense. However, I just use that to go into God.
Rick Archer: Yeah. I’m preparing to interview Andrew Harvey next weekend, and if you know, Andrew Harvey, but the delightful person, but anyway, he talks about, he talks a lot about the breaking open of the heart, and how he mentioned how even certain saints have sort of prayed for their heart to be broken as much as possible. It’s like, you know, Lay it on me, Lord, I just, I just wanted to break wide open so I can be, you know, love you fully.
Karen McPhee: That’s it. Exactly. And of course, if you’re I wasn’t consciously really on, I didn’t have a guru or whatever, guiding me. You know, I had some help, but wasn’t a conscious recognition that that’s what was happening. But that’s where it took me and that’s exactly, it’s the best thing ever. When the heart breaks open. It’s just exquisite. Even the pain of it, it can be exquisite. So I just went deeper and deeper into Oh, yeah, you’re chewing on something. Should I stopped?
Rick Archer: No. Yeah, mentally chewing on something. But you continue. I’m just thinking about a little devil’s advocate point here. Okay. But you finish your thought.
Karen McPhee: Okay, thank you. So there was this combination of exquisite pain, and going deeper and deeper into God. So I was, let’s say, I’ll say praying, because I don’t know what other word to use. But a real, you know, God had become the complete center of my life anyway. So that’s where I turned with this pain and was, didn’t want, you know, didn’t have a big enough view of it to go, oh, please take me into God and communion, just was more like, Please get me out of this pain. But that’s what happened is something there was a deeper surrender. And there was actually even changed my outer form, there was more radiance, and it was quite noticeable. And I just really fell into that space.
Rick Archer: My devil’s advocate thought was just that, you know, the world is full of pain, and so many tragic things have happened. I mean, we can, you know, itemize some of them are notorious of the Holocaust and school shootings. And, you know, Boko Haram kidnapping those girls, and just all kinds of horrible things that happen in the world all the time. And it may seem a little glib, to just say, Oh, yes, trauma or tragedy breaks open your heart. So you can love God more Tell that to somebody whose children have just been shot, or something. So how do you reconcile that? And also, how do you reconcile that along with the notion that God is omnipresent and merciful and that everything is ultimately in the best interests of our spiritual unfoldment? How does somebody who’s not open to the understanding or experience that tragedy is a gift in some sense from God, deal with tragedy as compared with someone who like yourself who might be blessed with that understanding?
Karen McPhee: Oh, okay. So first of all, let’s let’s say this right now, I’m just speaking from my own life experience. So that that’s really good. You interjected there. So I’m not making a blanket statement that everything harmful is for that purpose. Maybe I’ll say that later. But right now I’m just talking about what happened for me. So that’s the first thing. So thank you for interjecting there.
Rick Archer: I don’t know had any advantage in a way you see, because, I mean, here, you had been on this spiritual path. And so it wasn’t just Oh, my God, and my boyfriend broke up with me, it was more like, oh, this really hurts. But like, Okay, God, you know, immediately the attention is still on in that profound direction that it had been directed.
Karen McPhee: I think we might chew on this one a few times, right? Because right now, I’m sort of, in that that storyline, but I would say that it, it just about killed me, it was so painful. So I, you know, I won’t, you know, really. So I’m not downplaying that or anybody else’s heartbreak. And, you know, we could, there’s a lot of ways to talk about this. You can say, anybody who has faith, who goes to church who prays, maybe that can alleviate as well. So it’s a big topic that you’ve brought in, I think we need to take it in chunks.
Rick Archer: And it does, actually, I mean, it’s shooting in Charleston, South Carolina a few months ago, where that guy was in the church and sat through a prayer meeting then shot everybody in the meeting. And it’s like, the very next day, the relatives of those people were saying, We forgive you, and we love you. And I thought, Man, how do they do that? And honestly, like, it was really very impressive.
Karen McPhee: No kidding. It’s, it’s stunning. Really, it’s amazing. It’s to me, it’s grace. And that’s this whole thing is grace. So I don’t look at having had an advantage. I know what you’re saying. But for me, I have my own self could not have broken broken my heart open. It was Grace. It was Grace.
Rick Archer: That’s a good point. You know, we don’t kind of intentionally put our feet to the fire, we withdraw them. Interesting.
Karen McPhee: Yeah. Yeah. And every moment of this has only been grace, there isn’t anybody who can take credit for it. So yeah.
Rick Archer: So we’re gonna break that into chunks. You have another chunk?
Karen McPhee: No, I think it’s my sense, is we’re gonna touch back on it a couple of times.
Rick Archer: Okay, great, then we probably will then Then moving on a little bit. Okay, so you this this interested me, you said you continue to meditation and began to experience a painful contrast, total bliss while sitting but then losing it when you interacted with people and situations. And the reason that interested me is that that was never my experience. My experience was always more along the lines of the cloth and dye analogy, which you probably heard where you dip a dye, dip a cloth in the dye, and then bleach it in the sun, and it loses its color over time in the sun, but a little bit remains, then you dip it again, then bleach it again, and a little bit more remains. And each time you know a little bit more remain. So for me, it was never a black and white on and off kind of thing. The bliss of meditation, carried over to a certain extent and naturally wore off, but then kept getting recharged and just got more and more and more stable over time. So was that also your experience? Or was it really as black and white as you indicate here?
Karen McPhee: No, it was closer to what you’re talking about. I guess what I’m really referring to there is no set a whole thing of no stone left unturned. And so whatever remaining neuroses whatever limitations patterns that were still operating in me those were getting. Right. Yeah. slammed. Yeah. And that’s really what I’m talking about. It was kicking up
Rick Archer: the dust as those things unraveled.
Karen McPhee: Absolutely. And I was living with my partner at this particular time I’m talking about so you know, I’d have my meditation room, I go in the hallway, and maybe he’d be grumpy, or maybe, you know, I whatever, there’d be an interaction. And the, you know, the reactions were still coming up. But the rest of time there was this incredible piece. And sure, it was sure it was there underneath, but there were just something was like, okay, the contrast between that reactionary behavior between any of that and what reality was this deeper reality? There was just, it created a friction, a tension. It was inviting something. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Did you find that the deeper the surrender during meditation, the more effective the consciousness could be as a solvent for these you know, these pent up things that needed to be resolved?
Karen McPhee: Yes, I would say though, that up until this point, went I was just sitting. Yeah. And dissolving, and I don’t know how embodied it was. So what comes next is an eye and it feels to me like this is part of what was happening. But the blanket answer is yes, absolutely. There was just greater awareness at all times less reactivity generally. So it was just those particular patterns that were still operating. But I guess what became known is that there, it needed to be more embodied. That’s really what it is. I would say the bottom line was there.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And the relationship was helping you embody it, or
Karen McPhee: only the hardest way, by this point, things were. Yeah, not going that well. Yeah. So Yeah.
Rick Archer: At the science and non duality conference, I’m going to moderate a discussion between Hamid Ali ah, tamas, and Karen Johnson about non dual relationships and which in a way is sort of an oxymoron, until relationships. But um, and but the word the embodiment word is all the rage these days, because I think a lot of people went through a phase of sort of hiding out in the non dual, either conceptually or actually experientially, and then realizing that wait a minute, I’m a human being, and I have a life to live here. And how do I integrate this? And there seems to be worth just the point we’ve been addressing, there seems to be this clash between the sort of the peace of the transcendent and the Hurly burly of, of my actual life. So let’s talk about that more when it What would you say to that?
Karen McPhee: I think part of it is just misunderstanding you. There’s lots of number one is that when I first started teaching, let’s jump ahead a little bit, the first thing I did was help people, I would guide people through being in this beautiful state, recognizing awareness. With your eyes closed perfectly still, then I’d say Okay, open your eyes, find it there, stand up, find it there, move around, find it there. Because there’s, it’s almost like the form can encourage that it’s the same thing with teaching, there’s somebody sitting in the chair, and that lends itself to the idea that there’s an expert here. Same thing with meditation, you sit in that on that cushion, or in that posture, it can, if you’re not aware of it, bring up this unconscious idea that I that’s where I have to be in order to be in that place. So it’s not true. But it needs to be seen that there is no special posture needed. mean, it’s wonderful to put down deeper roots and put all your investment in that for a period each day. Great, no problem. But as you say, it needs to bleed out. And it really does. They’re just kind of a lot was going on in this particular thing. And it was creating this friction of okay, this, I know this is real, and I feel it all the time. And there’s still these intense reactions coming up. And there was just a need to embody it more. So I think that’s true for a lot of people. It’s not separate from us, it is us. But we need to know that.
Rick Archer: I think people know what we mean by embodiment, but just in case, it would be valuable. Why don’t you just define it? In a nutshell?
Karen McPhee: Well, now it’s very simple for me, I literally mean in the body.
Rick Archer: What what’s in the body?
Karen McPhee: You what we are not just in some abstract sense of this beautiful awareness or stillness around us. But to know that is also within the very cells. And it’s like, you’re you’re walking it, it’s walking you there’s no separation. So it’s not conceptual. It’s not special. It’s not exclusive. It’s not limited to certain circumstances and contexts. It’s constant and omnipresent.
Rick Archer: And is there anything that one could or should do intentionally to embody the transcendent if they have access to the transcendent to integrate it? Or is it something that’s going to happen automatically, just through the process of living?
Karen McPhee: Well, both. And is it
Rick Archer: by the same token, is it something one can retard by trying to hang on to the transcendent and to the exclusion of, of actual embodied life?
Karen McPhee: Well, I think you phrase I can’t remember who coined it spiritual bypassing,
Rick Archer: yeah. Robert Augustus masters talked about it and there was somebody before him who coined it. Yeah.
Karen McPhee: Yeah. So and I noticed and I think again, this is another thing that became conscious is meditation was, let’s say, just for fun 90% authentic and real and nourishing and temper sent an escape from these things that were still troublesome. So to the degree it’s an escape, I would say there’s needs to be that degree of grounding. So what we’re trying to escape, you know, there’s a lot of stuff. What when we talk about the non dual, we can talk about this a bit more. But there it’s there’s a danger Pamela Wilson, who a friend who I love, I’m sure you do, too. She talks about things being from the nose up, or the nose down. And so we just have to make sure that or be watchful attentive to if our realization is really up here. That’s when we won’t be experiencing it, as we’re walking through life are aware that we are
Rick Archer: and as you know, Adi Shanti, talks about realization in the head, heart and gut, you know, so. And I think he would probably say that it tends to start in the head, maybe, maybe it’s different for different people, but then it kind of moves down as we get more and more embodied and grounded.
Karen McPhee: I agree. Yeah, I agree. I’ve certainly had three major openings in those areas. So yeah, I agree. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Were you about to say something?
Karen McPhee: Well, I was just going to probably the next thing on the note there, just say, so how this got resolved was the intensity, there’s, again, there was a lot of fire here. Oh, I should put that in past tense or not. But the fire was really burning, like, Okay, I need to know God. And notice 100%, my own efforts seem to be creating more tension. Again, that contrast. And it actually reached a breaking point. It this isn’t logical, it’s just how it unfolded. And plus, I’m also can only remember so much of it. But just the highlight
Rick Archer: was what kind of efforts were creating more tension well,
Karen McPhee: as I’m sitting. So it was like, I, the me that I thought I was, I’m doing everything I can, I’m sitting for hours a day, I’m reading all these books, blah, blah, blah, and I’m still having these reactions to my partner. So you know, we’ve despite my best efforts, it ain’t working. And this happened to me a couple of times, but this one was like, okay, something just broken as, as it tends to be fairly dramatic here. It was like, This is it, I’m not doing one more minute of meditation, until I can find something that’s stable, lasting permanent, never comes and goes. And it was a moment of deep surrender, the loss of all sense of self breaking open into the divine. And then that was it. I stopped meditating that moment. That was that was it? Yeah.
Rick Archer: I don’t know if that had to be the, the way of going about it. Because I don’t know if necessarily continuing to meditate in any way, prevents you from arriving at that, which is, which doesn’t come and go. But it’s the way you did it.
Karen McPhee: No, and I’m certainly not saying that. Again, this is just my so called my story. Yeah. And I thank you, Rick, for clarifying that. I’m definitely not making a blanket statement. And by the way, I do still meditate I do again, but I’m just talking about one of the dramatic moments where more of the ego death, more of the surrender more of the recognition, I have my own self can’t do this. And it just was life use this intensity as a way to surrender. So that’s just what this is what happened, it was a big moment.
Rick Archer: And it must have been kind of interesting to see, after all those years of meditation. What would happen if you stopped doing it? You know, I mean, would you what, what you lost what you didn’t lose?
Karen McPhee: Yeah, and the thing is, that didn’t last very long. Because that we can, you know, not implying cause and effect cause and effect, but we could say it was, but it was right after that someone showed up at my house with a book, The Power of Now. And what got my attention is, first of all, I didn’t see the book. At first, the friend was just talking about this man, who spent two years on a park bench. And at that time when I wasn’t meditating, and I did just the minimal amount of work to function like bare minimum, the rest of the time, I sat on a park bench by the river. So there was like this big, was like something new. There was a connection there. Yeah, so it got my attention. Then he pulled the book out of his backpack and handed it to me and i Hey, I wish I thought of that wreck too. But you weren’t there to whisper me a clue. And no, I just touched it. And I just felt this. And by then I knew that meant this was something important. And so I very rudely said, um, see, I left the poor guy sitting there, drove over to the new age bookstore, got a copy, rushed out to my backyard under the apple tree and started to read it. But it was that was very magical when you talk about that, but it was, I had found just that surrender immediately led to this experience or this experience happened right after that. And it was the answer to what I was looking for.
Rick Archer: Yeah, it’s kind of neat. I mean, I’ve actually interviewed people who were in a bookstore, and a certain book would actually literally fall off the shelf and landed their feet, you know, and then they pick it up, and they open it up to a certain page, and right there on that page is exactly what they needed to hear. You love those stories. It’s like, it kind of harkens back to the little beings that are following us around, they’re probably helping to orchestrate these things,
Karen McPhee: no doubt, and thank you to all of them.
Rick Archer: Because I actually just as an aside, because you know, fun, you know, intelligence and the Divine is omnipresent. But within that Omnipresence within the ocean, there are occurrence. And so there are impulses of intelligence within the ocean of intelligence. And those impulses of intelligence are sentient beings who operate on one level or another and perform certain functions, such as pushing books off shelves, if necessary.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, that’s wonderful. Love that. Yeah.
Rick Archer: So you entered your Eckhart Tolle phase? And is that the business totally or toll?
Karen McPhee: It’s actually neither. But we till I can’t do the true total leads better yet? Something like this. I can’t remember. I used to know. But it’s long time ago, German.
Rick Archer: And so he started writing letters to record and to his publishing company anyway. And some of them were shared with him.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, what was really cool is I read the introduction. And like, probably lots of other people, I something just my heart was just singing, with Oh, my gosh, this is so beautiful. And there was such resonance. And then as I read the book, I was having these experiences of what the teaching was going to do and whatever. And so I was sharing them and some of them got passed on to a cart. So it was neat. But the main thing is I right away contacted to see if there’s some way I could meet a card in person. And it turned out he was coming to to calibrate where I lived, soon after that, so that was pretty cool.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And tell the story about how you actually met him. Yeah, it’s
Karen McPhee: wonderful. I call it my Yogananda moment. So the first meeting of the day was somebody to arrange the luncheon with a bunch of people. And that car was, you know, the guest speaker or whatever. And it was on a busy college campus. So we got there and parked, and I was walking towards the door, and there’s all these people and students and teachers and whatever, and the people coming to the luncheon. And this man walked right up to me, one of however many people and said, something like I know, for certain you must be Karen. And they’ve never seen my picture or heard my voice or anything. And I had seen the picture in the book jacket. But it wasn’t until he said that, and I was looking at him, I realized, oh, it’s Saqqara. So that was pretty special.
Rick Archer: Did he ever talk about that later on about how he knew it was you?
Karen McPhee: Oh, probably so I don’t remember. Okay.
Rick Archer: So great. So where did that I did later that day had an opportunity to sit with them. And a recognition happened in which your sense of boundaries dissolved, you knew yourself to be the whole universe. Want to elaborate on that?
Karen McPhee: Sure. My sense of it is that it was the first time that I sat with somebody who there were there was nobody there. So there was absolutely no projections or expectations, or he didn’t want anything from me. And and that, combined with his very spacious realization state of being, it just there was a resonance. And yeah, I mean, it’s still I can still feel it, it’s still rippling out into eternity.
Rick Archer: Question about accurate, actually, since I may, or may not ever get a chance to interview him. He’s pretty reclusive. But um, you know, we’ve He’s written several books, I think I’ve read them all, and but he doesn’t talk about his own experience too much anymore, as I see it. And do you? Do you get a sense that like you, like you, and like most people, since the awakening, he describes in the Power of Now, there’s been a vast, vast sort of deepening or unfoldment, or refinement or something, and that, and that he’s still kind of breaking new ground, so to speak.
Karen McPhee: Well, all I can really tell you is from my own perception and experience. Okay. And what I can say is, when I first met our card, he seemed almost transparent. He was so light. And the last time I spoke to him, which is a few years now, but this would be maybe 10 years later, I don’t know. I was speaking to him. And the difference was from to me was palpable now, okay, there’s the X factor of how much more had it become embodied here, whatever, but I felt he had become so embodied compared to before. So I will say though, that I think with that card, the thing there is that he is I don’t think he’d mind me saying he’s very much an introvert, as am I, but his is even more so. So that’s part of why he doesn’t share a lot about his experience. Plus, he doesn’t think that teachers the thing, right, the important thing to focus on is to say that to us all the time, but I, in my experience of him, I feel like that state of presence is probably just the same, and it feels more grounded to me. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Yeah, I would agree with the teacher isn’t the thing. But I think it’s interesting when teachers and people do relate their experience, because it helps to clarify the roadmap and helps to helps people understand that, you know, there is this ongoing development, and, you know, and we begin to sort of flesh out the details of it. And, and, as, as we hear more and more of these stories, there tends to be a kind of an agreement or convergence between different people’s stories, and you just kind of get a sense of, you know, how vast the whole thing was, is, which is, I think, helpful, I think the more as a, as a spiritual community, in the greater sense, we can understand where we’re going, there’s less than less likelihood of thinking that we have arrived. And that that’s all there is to it, you know, which, which some people say, you know, they don’t like any talk of levels or progress or anything else. But the fact of the matter is speaking, honestly, and realistically, people keep progressing unless they get unless they get stuck.
Karen McPhee: Oh, you know, I completely agree with you. And in fact, I’d ever wrote a true if there was a biography or an autobiography that really, I’d be the first one to buy it. I would love to hear. You know, I only had a few snippets. And all the time I spend with him just a few snippets about what happened in his unfolding and I would love to hear it I always felt laughter while I felt was almost a disservice not to have that story shared. I totally agree with you, even though his was extraordinary. Suppose they all are, yeah, what what was it like? There’s there are a few things he shared that really had an impact on me. But I think this is something I agree with you I feel like, ultimately, there’s only one and it but it’s expressing as these unique individuals. And the more that we share, the more it serves everyone. And I also found and I was guilty of this myself when I was for a while I volunteered as a current secretary. And I noticed in myself, you know, there was this tendency, I had to really be conscious of to try to present that he was perfect. You know, this whole thing we do with gurus and then we, you know, like, look at some of the great gurus and the stuff that was going on in the background there. So I’ve, you know, I’ve learned a lot since then. But yeah, there’s this thing, we want them to be perfect. And by ignoring their humaneness and their what they go through, you’re right. It’s, it’s, it’s it doesn’t serve, if he asked me,
Rick Archer: yeah, well, whenever I kind of imagined myself interviewing accurate, this is the line it would take, you know, and really sort of trying to grill him on on all the stages of development that he’s undergone in the last 15 years or 20 years, or however long it’s been. So if that appeals to ekart, call me. People would enjoy. Yeah, put in a word.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, I will certainly.
Rick Archer: And not to belabor the point, but sort of like, I just really think that, you know, both in terms of what you just said, in terms of the fact that people are human, and they still have their warts and, and whatnot, but also in terms of just a pure spiritual unfoldment that takes place, the more we can hear accounts of it, the better, we can understand. You know, I mean, it’s like, if only one, if only Lewis and Clark had gone across the US and back, we’d have a very rudimentary understanding of the topography of the US, you know, but now, it’s all been mapped out in such great detail, every square inch, you know, is mapped with GPS and whatnot. So it could be that way to spirituality to that, rather than have it be sort of this vague conjectural thing in many people’s minds with so many people defining the same terms differently, and therefore not actually communicating, the whole thing could be really developed far more thoroughly in the culture and, and become really a part of our clear understanding, which I think would be tremendously helpful for the evolution of our civilization, and if not the survival of it.
Karen McPhee: Sure, and, you know, it’s part of why we have so many different systems to because, you know, like, look at the, I can’t remember it’s been a long time. So they say that what is it the eight paths of yoga, depending on your dog from yoga, right, you know, you know, so there’s bhakti and all that stuff. The intellect the heart. Yeah. So, yeah, so as long as it would be inclusive enough, but I agree with you and I feel like it’s funny that you said that what came to me cuz I feel like that will happen, and it is starting to happen. But I agree, I think the more we share, it’s just, I can understand why some teachers are reluctant to share that stuff because everybody’s experiences unique. But I tend to go more with your view, when I’m, if I’m hearing you, right, which is, the more that the more examples we have, the more likely it is we’re going to find something that’s closer to what’s happening to us. And for myself, you know, there’s no complaint about the way things unfolded. And I understand now, it sort of had to be the way it was, let’s say, however, how much suffering could have been avoided? Had I had a guide at certain points or a teaching or whatever. So I’m with you on that one.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And as long as we all understand that everyone’s experience is unique, and that I am not going to experiencing it, experience everything, Karen experiences, it’s still interesting to hear what Karen has experienced, you know, just and what this person and that person and the other person has experienced it, you just listened to enough of them and it’s very enriching. And, you know, it’s very helpful in a number of ways, again, without like, getting fixated on needing to experience something because somebody else did. It may not be that way for you.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, that’s a key point. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Okay, so. So you really dove into Eckerd teaching, and he eventually invited you to teach. Yeah. Which you began to do.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, and it was, it was wonderful. Because it was never my intention. All I wanted to do was Sir It was at that thing of was still unfolding of selfless service and oneness and love. And so that was really my motivation was, Wow, this is the best thing I’ve come across so far. Because it’s so practical, like I used to say it makes it made presents portable, you know? Very, very practical. Very, very grounded.
Rick Archer: Did you invite people to teach?
Karen McPhee: Um, I don’t know, just a hand back then one or two.
Rick Archer: Okay. So you were you were one of those one or two?
Karen McPhee: Well, yeah. When it’s probably I’m sure it’s more than that, maybe. But at that those early stages, there were maybe three to three. Not sure. But
Rick Archer: it wasn’t like an official organizational thing where, you know, the Eckhart Tolle movement, and I’m a representative of like a TM teacher would be it was more like, I’m out here teaching and egrets has been my inspiration. Was it that kind of thing?
Karen McPhee: Well, I think Eckhart in those early days wasn’t interested in having an organization because he could see what would happen with the egoic things that get involved with there. But when we did, the day we met, he did feel that there would be some sort of organization and I wouldn’t be part of it. Like that was sort of it was just immediately recognized. So he invited me and gave me an endorsement and phone people and asked him to come to my group. So it was really, but it wasn’t like a formal organization at that point. So yeah,
Rick Archer: okay. I think you were about to say that Melton, I interrupted, you. Remember what that was? Nope. Okay, doesn’t matter. It’ll
Karen McPhee: come back if it’s important. Yeah. Now, it’s interesting, though, because how is I will just share this, I don’t just a brief example or story about this. When I was volunteering as guards, personal assistant, or secretary, whatever, I would get a list of people who had phoned and made inquiries, and I would contact them to see what they needed. And I’d make a big list on a yellow legal pad and take it over to that card. And he would sort of tune into each one and direct me what to do book sessions or whatever. And one day, a woman phoned, and while she was speaking to me, this clear knowing came that I could help her. I didn’t say a word, I didn’t write it down. And I took the list later, that data card, and she was x number down on the list. And when we got to her, as always, I’d say the person’s name and what was happening, he’d get completely still. And then out of nowhere, he said, You can help her. That’s cool. I know. And when things get validated, like that is pretty exciting and wonderful. So that’s how it started.
Rick Archer: Yeah. It’s also cool, because I mean, to hear you describe that that’s what he did. Because it gives an example of the depth from which he’s functioning and the clarity of his intuition that he could just sort of, I mean, if somebody read me a list like that, I’d say, I don’t know, tell him to read this book or tell him this. But I don’t think there’d be a sort of a deep intuitive knowing of it necessarily. But I understand how that works. And I’ve seen it in action many times. So it’s cool to hear that that’s the way he was functioning.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, it’s it was it was wonderful to be around somebody who lived that way.
Rick Archer: I also have heard him say that, you know, he doesn’t ever plan out his talks or anything. He just sort of stays in the moment and gets in the car goes up on the stage opens his mouth starts rolling out.
Karen McPhee: Well, and that was a wonderful let’s say role model for lack of a better word example. Oh, it was modeling that. So it was the same. I never planned anything that would just arise out of the presence and you learn to trust it and rely on it. So he was he was very authentic in that. And yeah, he also didn’t know I was probably different now. But back in those days, he didn’t do any kind of advertising. It had to be organic word of mouth, people came naturally. So it was really a good example.
Rick Archer: That was probably pre Oprah, right? Yes, it was. It kind of blew it open. Okay, so around this time, the death of a loved one. Well, you before that you said that your own you had your own unique view of things, because you’re sharing from your own experience. And it began to be began to become clear that you needed to leave this path and move on. That this spiritual path was not going to take you all the way it wasn’t going to work.
Karen McPhee: Okay, hang on. Those are two separate things. So the first one was, thank you. The first one was, again, I’m just reporting my experience, and does not It’s not logical or anything. But this knowing began to arise in me that I had to move on. But mentally, no way. So when those intuitions started to come to me, I ignored them. Like, I’m not leaving this guy, you kidding this? And he said, this is this, I found where I belong. And you know, how awesome to hang out with him. But life was relentless as always, and it’s really, I suppose, benevolence in so I just, I just circumstances came that I ended up moving away. And yeah, so there was just a need for that for whatever reason. Now, I’m not implying that. I just pitch that. I mean, obviously, it’s still here. Right. Yeah. But in terms of my own unfolding, and what was going to happen, it was something was changing. And there was some drama, which I’m not going to get into here, but there was stuff happened. Sure. So what a different way. Yeah.
Rick Archer: I mean, this is kind of a crude example. But when you go from high school to college, you don’t pitch High School. If you if you do, you’re not gonna do very well, in college. It’s like you have that. You have that under your belt, and okay, now there’s this, you know,
Karen McPhee: yeah. Well said, I like that very much. Yes. So yeah, it was just time to go on to another thing, or whatever. And around that time, that was the example years, what is share another. So a bunch of things happened, but one was there was this clear knowing that this wasn’t my message. It was at cards, and it was perfect for what it was. But I was here for something else, and then a close relative died. And when that happened, I found myself encountering this. chasm of darkness. Like holy shit after all this time. Sorry, your time. Here is this. Well, I thought it was gone.
Rick Archer: Yeah. One would think especially with all, you know, philosophical understanding that nobody dies and all that jazz.
Karen McPhee: And yeah, no, and that’s the mystery of this wreck. And I think it’s it’s such a mystery, but it’s this thing. To me. It speaks again about embodiment, but whatever. And there’s also this thing of the things we go through traumas, griefs, losses, like, that’s one thing, but it felt to me like the darkness I’d felt when I was young, was there underneath, and where there was something, and what would happen was, I felt like, I, for me, what became known was I encountered the core wound of the heart. That’s what I was, I didn’t know what that was, but that’s what was revealed to me. So I spent a year or so sitting with it, and it was like having a blizzard, or, you know, winter wasteland in my heart center, and I would sit with it, and it eventually was, let’s say, dissolved or healed or whatever. But, again, consciousness use that because it was the recognition. Again, doing this particular practice or whatever, wasn’t going to take me all the way.
Rick Archer: The Waking down, people use that phrase core wound. I don’t know if you’re aware of that. But I’m Samuel bonder, and that whole group, but um, so when you sat with it for a year, was it sort of like you really had to marinate in some dark stuff. And in order to process it was it just and you knew that that’s what you’re doing? And you’re just kind of, you know, processing and processing and just suffering through it until it passed?
Karen McPhee: Pretty much it was it was conscious suffering, I would say that’s a good way to put it. But really, it’s the same thing with things that happen arise now, what what really it was about was just feeling it. And so whatever had been avoided from what I was doing before had to be mad. That’s all really what it was.
Rick Archer: Back in the early days, John Gray wrote a book called what you feel you can heal. I think that was it or what you can feel you can heal, but basically that you have To feel it to heal it.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, I agree with that. And a lot of what we’re doing is we’re moving away from things, you know, the the primal mind, that survival mechanism tries to pull us away from discomfort. So it was just really meeting that and some other things happen at that time that were painful. It was a period of really getting grounded. And yeah, dealing with the humaneness, I would say.
Rick Archer: And you kind of mentioned at this stage that you rejected all external authorities and and just came to rely exclusively on internal guidance.
Karen McPhee: And that’s what I mean by the recognition that some so in quote, external teaching or method wasn’t going to take me all the way that I had to come to the, the Sadhguru than the internal guidance or authority.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Have you kind of balanced that out? No, I mean, because there’s a lot of people around who are sort of into the beer on guru thing and just categorically reject externally. No, no. What would you say?
Karen McPhee: No, no, it wasn’t like, it’s not like that. And it wasn’t even really like that, then it was more wasn’t a rejection. It was a turning deeper within knowing that the final? Well, there’s no such thing as final in my opinion, but the the depth of realization that was trying to happen, that was happening, I now needed to rely on, let’s say, the inner wisdom for that. It was it was that? Yeah. Now there was there was a pendulum swing, because it’s been a fairly dramatic unfolding. And for a little while, I was like, Okay, I’m not going to do anything spiritual. But in that balance, though, and my friends, I would, I had a joke, if they came over to my house, they couldn’t use the S word spiritual for a while. So it was just this thing. And I took a corporate job and took coaching, training, and did all this really grounded, embodied stuff. But the really big real couple of next big realizations that happened came from within.
Rick Archer: Yeah, I think it’s worth pointing out that even if you are involved with an external teacher, so to speak, such as Eckhart Tolle, or somebody else, any actual realization that takes place is an internal process. And you know, there’s a whole pearls before swine principle, but you know, you can, great, great, great teacher could could have a bunch of idiots around him and not nothing’s gonna be transmitted, so that there has to be a certain depth and receptivity, it’s really incumbent upon the student. But another analogy is, you know, you could have a vast reservoir, and according to the size of the pipe, that you bring up the reservoir that much water will flow. So a drinking straw, no matter how vast the reservoir isn’t going to allow that much transmission of water, a great big pipe will result in a Gusher.
Karen McPhee: I totally agree. And, you know, it’s, it’s to be really, language is funny, you know, it’s to be really, really precise, takes more time. But I completely agree with you. And what I mean is, so thank you, right, this is excellent. What I mean, to clarify that is, let me see if I can get a little closer to it. That there was a tendency, which I think is fairly common to project to the external as being the source the Savior, the honestly, I hate to admit this, but it’s true. It took me like the day I met Eckhart, he said, You’re here to teach presents, the very first day. Okay, but Rick, it took me 10 years to realize that because it was already here. So a little slow here, you know, didn’t get it very fast. Even though he told me that directly. It’s in you. It’s so this is sort of that thing of there’s a, you know, Nisargadatta had this wonderful, I’m not sure if I can quite grasp it, but it’s something like, you know, maybe Enlightenment or awakening whatever. You use the analogy of a fruit tree. The actual realization happens, instantaneously, the fruit is ripe, it falls now, right. Okay. However, he said that something like that process of how it ripens, and how long that takes and what it needs, and how much sunlight and rain and all that that’s a mystery that we don’t know. So that’s kind of what we’re pointing to here. So thank you for getting us back on that track. So what I noticed was a tendency to have everything. The authority was external, not internal. That’s the bottom line.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And, and I think it’s interesting when people shift from being externally oriented to a more internal reliance, there, there can be a tendency to throw the baby out with the bathwater, and to sort of, you know, just reject the thing. But I think a more mature balance would be that you know, want to preach shifts, everything that one has derived from the external authority, but then fully internalizes it. And, you know, and substantiates it in one’s own experience.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, that’s the ideal. That’s the pattern. That’s the archetype. So then there’s just this question of, you know, in my case, I was, you know, really far on the scale of, of having no sense of internal authority, but I totally agree with you. And it’s not like it was rejected. But there was, again, sometimes the fire is needed. So I needed to back away from looking to someone else to have my answer or whatever, realization and come within. But there were moments, you know, around this time, I bumped into my friend, Pamela Wilson,
Rick Archer: we’ll start over in a second, I just want to throw in a note that, it seems like, you know, just to get psychological on you for a moment. Oh, goody. Which I’m totally unqualified to do but it seems like you did have a little bit of a lifelong syndrome of looking to external authorities, and having a little bit lack of confidence in your own authority. I mean, there was this relationship thing, that guy was sort of like, as much a guru as a partner, and perhaps other instances, instances in your life have that.
Karen McPhee: I completely confess that and I said, thank you. That’s exactly what I’m saying. So in my case, there was a need to sort of rebel or reject it temporarily. And as as a fiery way to really ensure that I came within somebody who’s more balanced. I think that’s really what my story is, is a confession of Rick is, like I said neuroses and whatever. So whatever my own issues were, that’s in some way, you could say what determine the path. But thank you, I totally agree with that. And that’s why maybe there was such a swing here, and a need to go within,
Rick Archer: and probably these shifts in your life, you know, various transitions you went through that we’ve been talking about, were really just the external symptoms of stages of maturation that you were going through, internally, you know, and when, when a certain stage of self sufficiency had been reached, then there was a natural sloughing off of, of this or that external authority and standing more on your own feet.
Karen McPhee: Oh, I love that. Thank you. What a great insight. Yes, that’s really wonderful. Yeah, I agree.
Rick Archer: Out of the mouths of babes. Wonderfully said.
Karen McPhee: Yes. It’s wonderful. You can, you’re a great listener, I really appreciate that. That’s, that was good listening and good insight.
Rick Archer: So Pamela, good old Pamela. I’m gonna be seeing dabble in about 10 days at the science of non duality conference.
Karen McPhee: Oh, I love her. So we both started teaching at the same time, and so I attended her Satsang right from the beginning and loved it. She’s wonderful. So she’s always been teacher, friend, mentor, big sister, whatever. But around this time, when I was going through that pendulum swing of rejecting the external authorities, I bumped into her and I’d stopped going to Satsang at this period is like, Okay, I gotta get it within. And but she, you know, so insightful right away, just recognize that this was just part of the integration, avoiding that face, sort of like the insight that you just had. And it really helped, and I wasn’t enough openness to hear that and receive it. And it was, so there was good clarification. And it was helpful. Yeah. I’ll go with Pamela was very, very helpful through this whole phase up until now. really insightful, and so gracious, and generous and wise. So I adore her. Yeah, she’s
Rick Archer: awesome. And for those listening, I interviewed Pamela quite a few years ago, and so you’ll find that on BatGap and definitely shouldn’t interview her again, one of these days. She’s a good one. So can you like explicitly Can you can actually, aside from our mutual admiration of Pamela, can you say more specifically, how your interaction with her, you know, facilitated your your process?
Karen McPhee: Well, that first one well, that that particular one was it just it just made it more obvious, the consciousness became more focused on okay, that’s what’s happening. So then the pendulum stopped swinging. Okay, what’s what’s happening? This is just embodiment. This is just integration. Yeah, yeah. It just helped to light that up. I was just in my experience, but this made it more clear, the sort of theme of it. And then over the next few years, every time I sat with her, saw her whatever it would be a deeper invitation. Like, at one point, I had a dream about her. And she, she came to me and you know, I wouldn’t call this dream really, but it happened when I was asleep. But she said, join me in freedom. And I had just, I was just about to go to one of her retreats. And so I got there and I went to see her and said, Wow, you came to me in a dream. And you said, join me in, in freedom. And she said, No, I said, join me in total freedom. And it was one of those moments, Rick, where something just responded, and it was pretty special was, yeah, so she just really kept encouraging. that deeper understanding, resting and acceptance of that this unfoldment was happening.
Rick Archer: Yeah, I think it’s interesting to point out that, despite the fact that you had already been a spiritual teacher in your own right, you had the humility, if that’s the right word and sincerity, to sit with another spiritual teacher to further your progress, you know, you had no sort of sense that you are beyond the need of any kind of guidance or inspiration.
Karen McPhee: And Pamela is a great model of that she she’ll sit with who she resonates with as well. And there’s all you know, Nisargadatta, again, he said something about, people tend to focus with him on when the non dual part what we traditionally call non dual of the no self. And but you know, there was there’s all these passages where he talks about, you know, this exploration of, you know, he said something like, I love this, I wish I could remember the exact quote, but something like the recognition of what we aren’t, is finite, we come to the end of that inquiry. Because, you know, we see through it, but the investigation into what we are is infinite. Love. I
Rick Archer: love that, too. I saw that recently. I don’t know if it was in the notes you sent me or what? Maybe not, but um, maybe it was in that thing you did with Gary Nixon, you did an interview? Maybe? Yeah, but that’s a great quote. That’s kind of one of my guiding principles.
Karen McPhee: Oh, it’s, you know, it’s so wonderful. When we talk about the, that major realization I had, we’re about to talk about. That’s when that really came to me. But it’s like, so yeah, why not? You know, it’s, yeah, repeat them. It
Rick Archer: is so so important to say it one more time.
Karen McPhee: Okay, something like the investigation into the false what we aren’t, is finite. We come to the end of that, because that’s a fictional self. It’s a finite object. However, the investigation, the experience, the unfolding into what we are, is infinite. Because what we are is infinite.
Rick Archer: That’s great. And just from just to throw in a little thing about mathematics, and I’m not a mathematician, but I’ve heard this in lectures that, you know, in mathematics, there are infinities and infinities and infinities. I mean, you can take infinity. And it’s it’s big, it’s infinity, but then add one to it, or square it, multiply it times itself. And so you have a bigger infinity. Yeah. So like, there’s no end, you could do that endlessly.
Karen McPhee: Yes, yes. Yeah. And, you know, there’s a couple of people I really resonate with. And Pamela Wilson is, you know, for years, that’s the only person I sat was drawn to sit with it. And I typically go to her summer retreat every year. And it’s just a wonderful celebration. And always, you know, why not? Why not have a
Rick Archer: blog to resonate with?
Karen McPhee: Oh, gosh, right this moment, Isaac Shapiro. Oh, yeah. Isaac is great. He’s wonderful. He was just in Calgary, and I was happen to be talking to Pamela on the phone. And I said, he was hearing she said, Go, and I like, okay, and I went, and it was wonderful. Because he helps with it’s, it’s a, for me, it’s a really important piece of embodiment, which is the getting the nervous system to relax and different ways to deal with trauma. And yeah, that’s, that’s an area of interest to me. So yeah, I think he’s wonderful. There are others. Just their names aren’t coming to me right now. Susanna Murray, who you’ve interviewed,
Rick Archer: obviously, in 10 days still, she’s lovely. Yeah. That’s cool. Just a little Isaac Shapiro story. A couple years ago at the sand conference, say her Ira interviewed him and I first encountered him at breakfast in the dining room. And I said, I say hi, it’s Rick Archer. And he kind of looked, he put down his tray. And then he turned to me and just gave me this wonderful hug with full attention. He wasn’t going to sort of do it with his tray in his hands or anything like that. Just like totally focused and great hardest be like getting hugged by a big warm bear or something. And then he kind of hung around and came to a bunch of other stuff I had I was doing at the conference, interviewing this and that person participating in a group discussion. So I really, really liked Isaac a lot. Hope to see you again soon.
Karen McPhee: Wonderful. Yeah, he is so genuine. And yeah, really, really appreciate him a lot. Yeah.
Rick Archer: It’s nice. What we’re touching on right now this sort of mutual admiration society of are people who are, you know, peers in some respects, but each who each have their own gifts and whose gifts we may not have? And from whom we can derive benefit, you know, and then we’re never kind of beyond the point of enriching our own life are on perspective by being with one of these other people.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, I agree. Yeah. It’s lovely to watch the different areas of specialty or focus or grace or gift or intelligence coming through. And, yeah, why not? Yeah.
Rick Archer: It’s like doctors never stopped going to conferences and all where they can hear other specialists in their field, you know, say something that they might not know so much about. Okay, so let’s see, where are we here in your notes?
Karen McPhee: We’re getting close to the end you should get a little prize for that. It was very weighty. Remember,
Rick Archer: we go on for another 2020 minutes, maybe at most.
Karen McPhee: Okay. So, last couple of highlights, then an old string them together. So at this around this time, I just started to sit again. But just to sit. And I wasn’t in a sense, yeah. It wasn’t teaching or doing anything. But I just got this urge to sit. So one day, soon after that I was sitting and spot just spontaneously Ramana is inquiry came. And it came with Who am I but then it changed form into who’s thinking. And just in that moment, there was a recognition that there is no thinker. And it hadn’t been seen that clearly before. I mean, there’s all kinds of big chunks of you know, became like cheesecloth, but still. And so there was just this clarity. And thinking stopped for I don’t know, two or three days, whatever it was. And so there was just this natural functioning without that interpreter of the middleman. I think Adyashanti called it. And so it was was lovely. And when the first thought sort of flickered in, it was it was just okay, it realized it was just clear now, because it can it’s a potential danger of teachings like carts. If people you know, we all do our own trip with this stuff, right. And a lot of people I mean, a lot of people I talked to over the years, and I did it myself, you you almost make thought into an enemy. And that’s, that’s a misunderstanding. And so I think in the background, there might have been a little bit still of feeling that thought was inferior or whatever. And so when it came back, and it was like, Oh, how sweet is like a bird moving through. And so then there was just a deeper relaxation into thought. After that, however, I had noticed after this, occasionally, there would be what I would call suffering would arise. And even though it was understood that that’s something psychological, whatever, sometimes it was still arise. So there was this growing recognition. Okay, something’s been overlooked. And so that, once again, that real intensity that had built several times that I’ve shared, and other times besides that, started to build again, I was like, okay, something’s something’s cooking. Cool. And this was a time when, again, it was just really clear. I’m not talking to it wasn’t even a rejection. It was just clarity. I’m not looking anywhere. For the answer to this. I’ve tried all the greats. And here suffering solarizing I gotta find the answer to this myself. It was just clear seeing. So a couple of things happened. And I don’t remember which order but just to compress it in the interest of time,
Rick Archer: and the summary was some kind of emotional suffering, would
Karen McPhee: we? Yeah. Psychological, psychological. Okay. Yeah. The main thing, what ended up seeing was, so there were two areas that were showing up. One was in illness, I had a few chronic illnesses that were still coming. And I didn’t, even though there’s been a lot of investigation and, you know, presence around around them, there was still something there. And I didn’t recognize what it was. So when I started to really get very intense with inquiry, I recognize, oh, there’s just a remaining sense of, of an identity in there. The illness itself was given reality. So when the symptoms would come up, just very subtly, there’d be that sense of the history of this thing. And it would be projected into the future like this illness was an entity, and that’s a form of identification. So I just clearly saw that. And so with a couple of illnesses. One in particular, when I was doing the inquiry, I saw that and the symptoms stopped on the spot and have never come back. And it was sorry, that’s neat. I said, yeah. Oh, it was it was incredible. It’s like well Well, this is really powerful. So there’s an awful lot of investigation into things at that time. And after that, so that was a big one, there was a second illness where that happened with but in the interest of full disclosure, I did have an experimental treatment with that one. So you never know if maybe that finally kicked in. But on the spot, the the thing itself was over. Cool. So it was two major areas, I was debilitated I really couldn’t function for a few years. So it’s pretty strong.
Rick Archer: It’s interesting to think, you know, you’re doing that for yourself, as soon as you can think of examples such as they’re in the Bible, where Christ, you know, he’ll some leper or paralyzed person or something like that, probably through the same principle, but kind of with such a profound degree of mastery. Yeah, to be able to do it with somebody else like
Karen McPhee: that. Absolutely. And of course, you have to know it here first. Yeah. So that’s the thing. And so right around that time, the other thing that was happening was what I came to see was there was suffering about suffering. There was just this little remaining sort of sense of the one who was supposed to end suffering. And I didn’t recognize I’d taken that on. So anytime suffering arose, this little imaginary entity felt toward it. Oh, no, it’s come again, I’ve failed. So it was causing this angst, I guess. And it was also the sense that I’m supposed to, unconsciously had taken on, I was supposed to end suffering for all of humanity. So this big thing, right? So just sitting down, and I just got this real intensity. And I actually heard out loud, that’s enough, that I knew what it meant meant. That’s enough of this. Let’s so I sat down, and this intensity rose, I’m not getting off this chair until I see through this. And right away through the inquiry, just that sense, fictional sense of self was seen through it st. Oh, it’s just in the mind. And then that whole sense of the mind made self just sort of collapse like a house of cards, kind of kind of experience.
Rick Archer: Interesting. And you said as a result of this, I think this is as a result of that. And enormous energy and aliveness arose that lasted for about 18 months.
Karen McPhee: Yeah. So, you know, one way we could talk about that is perhaps the lifeforce that had been, I mean, this is just a conceptual thing, but that had been trapped in sustaining that remaining sense of self was freed up. So I don’t know, Rick, no,
Rick Archer: that’s a good point. I mean, I think a lot of life forces is caught up in, you remember, an hour ago, you’re talking about how you looked at that person in the car, and you could sense that they were trapped, and in the ego and what, uh, implicit in the way you said, that was the tremendous amount of energy is is tied up in maintaining that structure, you know, and it’s a common report and observation of people who are highly liberated, deeply liberated, that there’s a tremendous outpouring of energy that just have, you know, infant infant, was the word in Taggable. You know, I’m trying to say just, yeah, create a dynamism. Tremendous dynamism. Yeah,
Karen McPhee: it’s exciting. And it feels like part of indefatigable I think that’s, that’s it, well done, I wasn’t even gonna come to it. And I think part of the purpose of this, I’ve seen this, a lot of times with some of the teachers or masters or whatever, when you look at their life story, there’s a period after they’ve had another realization, and, you know, this is just conceptual. But just see if this resonates, it’s like, part of the purpose of that outpouring is so that it can go into the collective. And, you know, touch is like a tuning fork making that possible for others. And I did see some of that happening over that period, because I shared some of this for a while with other people did some sort of non dual pointing and whatever for a while. But yeah, but it’s interesting, because right away, though, after a very brief period, life just took a left turn, and just completely stopped. It’s interesting. Couple things happen. One, I didn’t recognize there’d still been a momentum to some sort of like spiritual or seeking activities. And I didn’t notice till after this, it’s like, I oftentimes use the analogy of, it’s like, there was a generator that was plugged in, and I didn’t know it was there, and it was generating the seeking mechanisms all day long. And then with this recognition, it’s like the plug up hold, and let stuff stop. I don’t even know notice. It’s after the fact one day I was sitting and I was this sort of sense of boredom arose and like boredom. I never have that. What’s this? So when I looked at is like, Oh, I’m not doing all that. spending eight hours a day, meditating and reading books and all that I’m just being and it was it was interesting. So right away though life was I just started moving into going to school, taking courses getting a job, sort of counterintuitive to what you think would would happen necessarily after that. Well, it’s like that
Rick Archer: dyeing the cloth analogy I used while back, you know, whereas there’s dipping and bleaching and dipping and bleaching. So your your life seems to have gone through these cycles where yes, you know, you dive deep and then integrate. Yes, that’s
Karen McPhee: exactly what it is. It’s just funny because that seems like the traditional pattern is you just with each realization, you just, you know, go deeper into your teaching or whatever. But that’s never been my thing I you know, I never started out to be a teacher. And so it kind of drops off and then comes back. Anyway. So it was it was definitely followed by a period of very intense integration.
Rick Archer: Yeah, it’s funny, somebody emailed me a few days ago about this interview and say, What is it with Karen, she’s a teacher, she’s not a teacher, she’s a teacher, she’s not a teacher. But yeah, I think we’ve explained it.
Karen McPhee: There it is. And also, you know, part of the process, because it never started out that way. But I did notice this, because there’s so many other things. I mean, as with I’m sure most of you guess you could probably talk all day. But there’s a one of the patterns that happened is after when I, you know, when you watch the intelligence wreck, you know, it is. So the intelligence of one of the things that happened by pulling me away from being part of our carts, organization, or whatever was it exposed something that I hadn’t seen, and that was just innocently, I never started to be a teacher, it happened organically. But behind the scenes, there was some identification that had rosin had arisen with the teacher role. So every one of these gaps, it’s just exposed something and it’s very intelligent, and beneficent is perfect. So in that particular case is like, oh, and a couple of other times, I mean, I’d go through a shift, and then I go back and sit in the chair, and I’d be looking to see if there was any teacher present. And if there wasn’t an after, when I couldn’t find any, then it’s like teaching sort of fell away even more. But it’s not my it’s not a thing for me, it’s just life, when something’s realized, you know, it wants to be shared. But it’s not. I don’t, it’s not sort of my main thing. It’s just incidental, almost,
Rick Archer: like we were saying in the beginning, you know, we’re all instruments of the Divine, and it’s gratifying to the instrument, and it’s beneficial to the whoever whomever the instrument influences to serve in that role. And we all have different roles to play there as many instruments as there are people.
Karen McPhee: Yes, I agree. And the other thing is that life was also this whole thing was, No, who knows, because we’re not done yet. I mean, when I get to the end of life, if you’re still around, I can send you a note and say, Hey, this is how it turned out. But one of the things I’ve seen is there’s an intelligence to this unfolding. And it’s brought me to another place another way of, let’s say, serving or being with people, that’s just more appropriate and authentic at this point. I all I always, not always, but the last few years, when I was performing in a teaching function, there was this recognition of now, I’m not making a blanket statement, I’m talking about my experience, but there was a sense of everything, whatever that is, here is there also. But when this one sits in the chair, it creates the separation. And I really, really invited people to look beyond that and try different formats. But I noticed there is there was almost, you know, almost like reinforce that sense of, there’s something here that you don’t have. And because I’m sitting in the chair, I’m gonna give it to you. So there was part of me just being really aware of that. And it’s it was some teachers, it’s not an issue, it really doesn’t matter. But here, it just there was just this, there’s something about empowerment really is the underlying theme of whoever I’m serving, or that function is being performed. It’s like there’s, there’s a real desire for empowerment. And the way that it works best here right now is more one on one. But so there’s this other thing, too, that was taking me out of that traditional teacher format. It worked for a while, maybe it will happen again. But it’s not my primary thing. It’s not my primary love. So life was also coming into a more appropriate form for my temperament or whatever.
Rick Archer: Yeah, even one on one. It’s like, okay, I’m signing up to have a consultation with Karen. You know, it’s not she’s not signing up to have one with me. I’m signing up to have one with her. Yeah, so this is still even there, there’s gonna be that, that potential, you know, imbalance in the roles perhaps, but um, I don’t know, I have you. We could probably talk about how you are how other teachers have dealt with this issue. And but I also have don’t have a problem with somebody having more to offer than the average person. I mean, you know, Ramana Maharshi, for instance, had something and it was appropriate that he was the guru in that ashram. But I think he also did things to humble himself like working in the kitchen and you know, just kind of showing that Despite his specialness, he was an ordinary guy, in a way.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, yeah. No, I agree. And you know, there’s there’s nothing wrong. And I’m perfectly happy to go and sit with just sat with Isaac and he was in the chair. And with him, he’s he’s really found this beautiful way of being so inclusive. And it really works for me. Same with Pamela. And yeah, I agree with you. And just for my own unfoldment, there’s just been periods where it just hasn’t felt right to sit in that format. That’s all it’s really not a big deal. Oh, yeah.
Rick Archer: I mean, I totally understand. And I was a TM teacher for 25 years. And, and that was quite a while ago, and I don’t have any inclination to, nor do I feel at all qualified to be a teacher. Now. It’s just, I’m definitely in ongoing student mode, if we want to put it that way. Doing something that I’m good at, and it’s appropriate for me to do serving in the way I can serve.
Karen McPhee: That’s beautiful. I love that. That’s how I feel. It’s just however life is going to use these instruments. That’s gorgeous. And thank goodness you do I do, right? Because it’s such a service to the Sangha. So wonderful. So yay, yeah. Yeah. So yeah, I appreciate that. And I think to each their own, and there’s something that also Pamela helped me to see as well, when I the last time when it’s just as like, No, you gotta stop this, this intelligence was like, take off, take down your website. Put up your shingle, you know, forget it. And it was just again, this knowing that something new wanted to emerge, and everything known had to dissolve. And I just happened to see Pamela around that time. And she’s, you know, I didn’t say anything to her. And she said, yeah, things are, you know, something new is trying to come through, and it won’t until you let this die. So I did. And also something was revealed through that process that had been overlooked, which was perfect. And once I saw that, everything changed. And it was this underlying little concept, innocent, heartfelt, actually, overlooked belief, misunderstood misunderstanding, that had come along many years ago, and had been on scene, which was that the idea was my worth or value only comes through serving. And of course, it’s just through through being, that’s our worth and value. So that was seen. And that came to rest, and then everything started to go get going again. So this kind of entity,
Rick Archer: and one follows from the other. Because if you serve without adequately being, then what sort of service are you actually providing?
Karen McPhee: Sure, sure, absolutely. But again, this is a story of everything being brought to light that can be that’s in any way obscuring or limiting the experience. And I think that’s the journey we’re all on. So that’s my story.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And I love how the way you’ve continued, I love the way you’ve continued to refer to an intelligence, which is kind of larger are wiser than ourselves, which keeps guiding us, you know, and we keep sort of being nudged or kicked or tickled or whatever to, to, you know, take what it are to benefit from what it’s trying to accomplish with us.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, you know, and it’s interesting. One other little tidbit here, that comes back to you, Rick is a number of years ago, I don’t remember we could look it up, I just this inquiry started to arise, once there was a real stability and whatever this is, and there was this knowing that, you know, all those other faculties, where are they there was a sort of sense that there was going to be a way that this all could come together with just an intuitive knowing, but I was just in the unknown, and just sensing that coming. And then I got this intuition one day to turn on your show. And you happen to be interviewing Mercedes kirkko. And when I heard her story, I knew that was going to be a similar story for me, someone who had been with a teacher had their awakening, and then their life took a very dramatic turn and started doing something kind of woowoo you know, spiritual out there. And it was so I’m grateful to you because that I wouldn’t have found my way to her I’m sure without that, and but during the telling of her story goes back to what you said earlier. It’s like everything in me just like when I touched the Power of Now everything like and I knew it was kind of a clue. So thank you for that.
Rick Archer: Cool. I love hearing those little stories. And I’m sure they’re for everyone. I hear there 1000s That I don’t hear but it’s a it’s kind of a joy, to be Marshy. Mahesh Yogi once told me I was a connector and a collector. So I kind of like playing that connector role. And, you know, there’s a connection you just described that I wasn’t aware of, but it’s really fun kind of plugging people into. Unwittingly most of the time to situations or opportunities or other other people that are going to benefit them or facilitate their, their growth.
Karen McPhee: That’s a great thing about your show. So that’s kind of what ended up happening is that dimension just started to open up again. And I started just, again, I had an intuition and it was validated externally, like some of the other stuff I’ve shared. And I just started to sit with people and, man, it’s, it’s amazing to me every session, I’m like, wow, I never know what to expect. It’s just the sense of oneness and love. And whatever shows up and watching what happens for people, it’s just, it’s just love and gratitude is my experience. It’s, it’s wonderful.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And in your notes here, you say that in these sessions, psychic information often comes that is helpful in healing, releasing or embracing life circumstances. Each session is unique and arises out of the field of oneness with no imposition of any teaching or formula. So it’s sort of like you came full circle with that psychic information thing, it’s kind of come back again, but in a different context, a much more solid foundation.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, and there’s, it’s just, it’s just whatever rises because there’s no filter, or, like you said, there’s no imposition. And this is another reason, it seems to me that those times of teaching and the messages and whatever why they’ve dissolved is because now there’s just nothing imposed or before, through through certain periods. For example, with aircards teaching, I might be teaching the underbody method, awareness or whatever, might do non dual pointing or whatever. Now, there’s just nothing except what arises. And it’s always perfect for what that person needs in this point of their journey and their evolution. So talk about being an instrument, that’s exactly what it is. So everything to me feels like it all fit together the same through the fictional self. There’s nobody here who needs to be a teacher or anything else. There’s just life, love, oneness, and it moves and touches. And sometimes it’s physical healing, sometimes it’s emotional. Sometimes it’s awakening, sometimes it’s embodiment, you know, clarification, it’s just whatever. So it’s pretty cool.
Rick Archer: To become a spiritual jack of all trades.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, the other part of that is master of none. But that’s the beauty, you know, just to be so transparent and open and available. It’s a joy. And so the one shows up in an apparent other form, and the, you know, these two, it’s communion. And it’s, I love it. It’s very wonderful. So
Rick Archer: you’re doing many of these sessions?
Karen McPhee: Yeah.
Rick Archer: Like, people, obviously listening to this who want to have one, they just go to your website, Karen mcphee.com, and find out how to do
Karen McPhee: it. Yes, I’m still working on my website. It’s fairly new, but they can just email me and book a session. I do Skype sessions just about every day. And I also have a couple of beautiful. One is a crystal bookstore here in town and another bookstore that also has crystals. So there’s some spiritual centers here locally that I’ll go into sessions at those. And in my, my place, so yeah, on the phone. Most of
Rick Archer: the people who are watching this, obviously aren’t going to be in Calgary, but no, they’ll they’ll want to Skype you if they want to do that.
Karen McPhee: Yeah, it’s, it’s amazing to me, Well, I’m sure you know, but Skype, it’s it’s virtually the same as being married. It’s pretty cool. Yeah. So yeah,
Rick Archer: great. Okay. Well, this has been wonderful. I think we’ve really covered it quite thoroughly. is are there any little lingering thoughts that you might want to bring out that you’re going to think of five minutes after we hang up?
Karen McPhee: Probably, but nothing comes to mind, I guess. Except that just the invitation for everyone to walk. Recognize, I mean, this is a journey. There. As far as I can tell, there isn’t a destination it’s ever unfolding. And so gratitude to Rick for having the opportunity to share and also being able to witness so many other people’s story of their unfolding. I feel it’s really serving us all. And yeah, just, you know, hey, keep keep keep on truckin because life keeps unfolding and gets better and better and better. And as we come into our own inner authority, and really embody this reality, life. It just comes into right alignment, and it’s pretty, pretty gorgeous.
Rick Archer: There’s a saying that the goal is all along the path. So it’s not like we have to sort of Passover today for some glorious future. The future may be more glorious than today is but there’s a lot of glory in the moment to Joe sure is very accurate like to say, you know,
Karen McPhee: it’s so true. You know, I’m in love with life and even through the hardships, that’s that has been a common theme here is loving that which is unfolding it all. And, you know, it’s pretty, it’s pretty delicious even when it’s challenging. And it is it’s to me, it’s a love affair with the divine with life. And yeah, it’s pretty cool.
Rick Archer: Right? All right, well, let me make some wrap up points. First of all, thanks to those who who surmounted our technical difficulties and and listen to the live streaming version of this looks like there have been about 20 or 30 people on throughout the call. Sometimes it’s 50 to 80. But that’s when we’re doing it every week. And there aren’t any glitches. So appreciate your diligence and tuning in to that. And nobody submitted questions. But in future if, if you’re watching the live stream, and you have a question, there’s a form at the bottom of bottom of the upcoming interviews page, and you’re welcome to submit one. So this interview with Karen has been, as you probably know, one in an ongoing series, there have been well over 300 now. And if you’d like to check out the past ones go to the past interviews menu on batgap.com. And you’ll see them categorized in four or five different ways. There was also the future interviews menu when where you can see what’s coming up. And there’s an audio podcast of this which almost as many people listen to as watch the video, so that people commuting and bike riding and whatnot listening to it. So there’s a page where you can see the various options to sign up for that. There’s the donate button, as I mentioned, which makes it possible for us to do this. And from the outset, my concept was to just make this freely available and grow it to the point where voluntary donations would make it self supporting and moving in that direction. So I appreciate that. And it enables people in very far flung places to watch this who otherwise wouldn’t be able to if there were any kind of entry fee. And there’s a email signup thing people have been saying, Well, why No, no interviews, why don’t have any views. But you know, if you sign up for the because I was, you know, we are a vacation that went to Vancouver, but if you sign up to be notified by email each time a new one is posted, you’ll just know within 24 hours after it’s posted. So feel free to do that. All right, well, thanks for listening or watching and we will see you next week. The next one is Andrew Harvey, which if you’re not familiar with him, it’s gonna be a total delight. He’s he’s an amazing guy. I’ve been kind of tuned into him for at least 20 years and he’s a beautiful man. So see that