Prajnaparamita Transcript

Prajnaparamita Interview

Rick: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer. Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of interviews with spiritually awakening people. There have been well over 300 of them now, and if this is new to you, go to, check out the past interviews menu where you’ll find them categorized in about four or five different ways. This is also available as an audio podcast. If you feel inspired to support it – it depends upon… the continuation of this show depends upon the support of generous listeners and viewers, and there’s a donate button there. My guest today is Prajnaparamita. She is currently in France but is originally from the Netherlands, has been in search of her true nature all her life, and found it. Initially investigating and studying psychology, religion, and philosophy, she eventually met a truly awakened soul and surrendered her heart, her mind, and her life. Over several decades, Prajnaparamita received a rich vista of non-dual teachings, Advaita Vedanta, Mahayana Buddhism, Zen, and Ch’an. Once realized, she dedicated her life to the self-realization of all. Through satsangs, retreats, and interviews, she continually directs the listener to their very wisdom heart. These days, Prajnaparamita spends most of her time at La Roseraie de Sacha, a center of awakening and natural living deep in the countryside of central France. With meditation and satsang daily, opportunity is given for contemplation and self-inquiry, interwoven with the participation in projects around the property from gardening to cooking. People remember the transformative force of play, and remember what it is to live without purpose. I think we’re going to want to talk about that one. All are welcome at La Roserie, at any stage of their awakening journey, of any religion and no religion whatsoever. When not there, Prajnaparamita is giving satsang in the Netherlands or traveling worldwide. And I first became aware of Prajnaparamita a little over a year ago. I was out in the yard cutting the grass and picking aronia berries off of a bush that we have, and listening to various things on my iPad, and I listened to the talk she gave at the S.A.N.D. conference in the Netherlands, and really liked what she was saying and how she came across. I thought, “Well, I’ve got to interview her one of these days”. So here we are. So welcome, glad we could do this.

Prajnaparamita: Thank you, Rick.

Rick: Yeah. So you have a very interesting story, I think, and I have a few notes on it here, but rather than me reading from notes anymore, why don’t you take us through it, kind of starting from your early years, whatever you consider significant. And since I read quite a bit of your website, I’m sure I’ll have some questions and ask you for more details as we go along.

Prajnaparamita: Okay. Well, I was born and raised in quite a fortunate situation. We were lacking nothing, and we could have art classes and music and go to college. And we were meant to go to university. It was quite an intellectual family. And so that was the setting of my upbringing. And from as long as I can remember, I was bored. I didn’t fit in there. And I couldn’t understand that the grown-ups were leading such a heady life. And I couldn’t see any excitement and any real life in it. So the older I got, the more I got upset and worried because I was heading to being a grown-up, and I really didn’t want that kind of life.

Rick: I remember you saying on your website something about all your friends were getting into careers and  building their second home and so on and stuff. And then you were sitting in a room leaning against the stove reading Vedanta books.

Prajnaparamita: Right, yeah. That was when I was studying at university. I finally found my first master, who was a disciple of Nisargadatta. And the moment I saw him – a wild man with hardly any education, but was full of life. And he hit me so deeply. And I saw what I was looking for in his eyes, what I called home.

Rick: And that was Alexander Smith.

Prajnaparamita: Alexander Smith. And I decided then and there that I had to glue myself to him. And that’s what I did for the following 10 years and absorbed as deep as I could.

Rick: Right. And then did you go on to other teachers because he died or you just for other reasons?

Prajnaparamita: He died later. Before he died, I went to see Papaji in Lucknow and I stayed there several winters. I loved him dearly and were just most magnificent times, but was something lacking. Something like a profound spiritual chemistry was not really there. And I was always sick there. And then I heard of ShantiMayi in Rishikesh and I decided to be with her on the ashram of her master, in nature. And when I came there, I had had so much teaching, I didn’t need to hear the words anymore, but I was just sitting there for many many many hours a day. And that brought the completion of the journey.

Rick: She’s still alive, isn’t she, ShantiMayi?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah. She’s doing very well, going around the world.

Rick: Is she Indian or what nationality is she?

Prajnaparamita: No, she’s American.

Rick: Oh, American. Okay. I’m surprised I don’t know much about her yet. Maybe I’ll interview her also.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah.

Rick: And even her teacher is still alive, isn’t he? Maharajji?

Prajnaparamita: No, he died a couple of years ago.

Rick: Okay.

Prajnaparamita: He was called Maharaj.

Rick: Yeah.

Prajnaparamita: Very serene, beautiful, silent presence.

Rick: Nice.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: So, when you say the journey was completed, what exactly do you mean by that?

Prajnaparamita: Well, that’s an intimate story. One night at the Ganges, when I had been in this silent place for many weeks and been meditating and really living in absorption for many weeks, one night I was overwhelmed by an incredible force of light that took everything out of me somehow and everything stopped. And from that day – that night – on, I have not been able to find myself again.

Rick: I remember you saying that you didn’t even realize at the time that that was really significant. Somehow it took a while.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah. I had no capacity to reflect at that point. And this giant force – it was so powerful, was also so subtle that it was almost like a dream. And I didn’t tell anybody, nothing really changed, but I was completely still and everything that I can call “I” was eradicated. And after that, I was not able to talk for a long time.

Rick: Literally, you couldn’t.

Prajnaparamita: Literally, yeah.

Rick: I mean, you couldn’t even say, “Please pass the salt” or something.

Prajnaparamita: That was possible, but not much more than that.

Rick: Yeah, yeah.

Prajnaparamita: So, reasoning was not possible. Everything was so verified that I was incapable of formulating words. Yeah.

Rick: I was just talking to a friend about this kind of thing, about some of the teachers like Eckhart Tolle and Byron Katie and others whose awakening was so radical that it took them a long – took them in some cases a couple of years – to learn how to function normally again, if they ever did learn. Just real basic stuff. I mean, Eckhart had to sit on the park bench for a couple of years feeding the squirrels because he couldn’t do much else. Did you have a long period of integration like that?

Prajnaparamita: Well, it was mainly this talking, and I didn’t feel like doing anything. There were no impulses. And I really wanted to go into the Himalayas and sit there for the rest of my life, but my Guru said, “No way, no way, you have to go out”. And also Alexander had said that already the second time I met him. He said, “This is what you’re going to do. Whether you like it or not, whether you want it or not, it’s going to happen anyway”. So it must have been written on my forehead. And it is only when people want something that I come into action, otherwise nothing happens. By myself there is no impulse. Still it is like that.

Rick: Yeah, well I’ll try not to run out of questions. Yeah, it’s like I’ve heard the analogy of a reservoir and the reservoir just sits there and it’s really up to somebody to put a pipe up to it, and then if they put a pipe up then it can flow, and the larger the pipe the more it flows.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, that’s it, exactly like that.

Rick: So when you say you were completely emptied out, what does that mean?

Prajnaparamita: Well, what I find so amazing is that concepts – everything is so transparent and it has lost its meaning and its charge. It’s like they have become toys to me.

Rick: Even now?

Prajnaparamita: Concepts. Yeah, they’re toys. I just play, to play with them. So there’s something that can never be touched and the concepts are bubbles, something like that.

Rick: But they’re useful, aren’t they?

Prajnaparamita: They’re wonderful and I love to play. And I love to play with language also.

Rick: So they just don’t have the gravity that they once had?

Prajnaparamita: Not at all.

Rick: Right, but they’re still useful.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, wonderful.

Rick: Yeah, I mean we couldn’t be having this conversation without concepts.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah, and I love language.

Rick: Yeah. Do you speak other languages besides Dutch and English? Maybe French also, huh?

Prajnaparamita: No, no, French is not good enough. No, no, no. No, I do Dutch or English.

Rick: Okay. Yeah. So when you said, when you’re describing your awakening, a force, like a powerful force… Did you, do you feel that… What did you feel that force was and where was it coming from? Was it outside you, inside you, everywhere or what?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, mysterious, so mysterious.

Rick: You feel like it was like some kind of kundalini energy coming up or?

Prajnaparamita: I wouldn’t say it was running through my spine, not like that. It was all over the place and I think my room was also light, but I’m not really sure. I have no idea where it came from. It was just there and I surrendered completely and I can imagine that if my being was not so rarefied it can easily kill somebody. If there would have been much more mass in my cells, you know, it would have killed me, but it was so transparent already so it could easily move through me.

Rick: That’s an interesting comment. I want to come back to that, or we could even talk about it right now and I’ll come back to other things, because in some of the things I was reading that you had written, you did emphasize the value of preparation and purification and stuff like that, and some people just brush that off and don’t even consider it. But many serious teachers and traditions emphasize the essential value of it for the very reason you just mentioned.

Prajnaparamita: Right, right. Who can… You know, well it is my experience, so I talk of course from my experience. But to be able to carry nothing and to be able to allow the light to completely permeate you, you need to be so strong and so surrendered and so willing.

Rick: And maybe the word purity would be appropriate too.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, pure is pure.

Rick: Not in a moralistic sense, but in terms of the preparedness of the nervous system and freedom from a lot of crud and obstruction, you know.

Prajnaparamita: Exactly, yeah, your nervous system must be ready. That is how I see it, and I completely agree with you. There are so many people who see it a different way. That’s fine, but this is how I see it. Yeah, people can get easily completely mad also.

Rick: Crazy you mean?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Yeah, and there are many examples, and there are even examples of people who have set themselves up as teachers who got pretty crazy, you know, and got kind of drunk on the energy.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Yeah, well it is a point worth covering I think, because my teacher’s teacher always used to have the motto, “Safety first”.

Prajnaparamita: I agree.

Rick: Yeah.

Prajnaparamita: Who is your teacher Rick?

Rick: He was Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, although I haven’t been with that organization for quite a while now, but I was for many years. And he always used to quote his teacher as emphasising, and he also in his approach tried to emphasize, that quality of safety. This is a marathon, not a sprint. There can be severe consequences if you push it too hard.

Prajnaparamita: I see like that. I see exactly like that.

Rick: Yeah. Another thing you mentioned that I want to go into is that, you said when you had that awakening there was no sense of self anymore, you couldn’t locate a self. Can we talk about that a little bit?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah. I remember, during my search, these many years of despair, the despair was made of loneliness, of separation. You know, I had no stuff, I had lots of self-confidence, I had no big problems, but I had only this basic thing of profound sense of separation and loneliness. And that is the center, the pivot, from where we see, experience, think and feel, the center from which we measure and compare and evaluate all of that. That is dissolved. So where am I? Well, I don’t know. I can’t find the limit. I can’t find the center.

Rick: But even if there’s no limit and no center, does that necessarily mean there is no sense of self? And let me just add a second point to that question. Does the sense of self consist of these sort of negative qualities like loneliness and despair and all this stuff, or is there some more kind of deep value of self which is not colored by those kind of qualities of lack but has its own sort of intrinsic nature?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, I can’t see that. The self to me as it is used in the spiritual books is a pointer. There’s no such thing ultimately.

Rick: So when they say self with a capital S you mean that’s like a pointer?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, self with a capital S to me is a pointer.

Rick: Okay, so if there is no self then what is the perceiver?

Prajnaparamita: It’s a concept ultimately.

Rick: Okay, well, right now you’re perceiving me through Skype, or at least that’s the way we use the language, you know, you are perceiving me.

Prajnaparamita: Right, yeah. So that’s why I say Rick, ultimately… Because ultimately the words are pointing to the mystery where the words do no longer glue. How to say it? It’s difficult to say it, because all words fall short. They are to me pointers, all of them. So even the self, even awakening, God – all these lofty concepts that can serve you for so long and so profoundly, ultimately they are nothing, nothing there.

Rick: There’s a quote from sayings of the Jewish Buddhists, “If there is no self, then whose arthritis is this?”

Prajnaparamita: Who is this?

Rick: Whose arthritis is this?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, exactly, exactly.

Rick: Well, so you would say that… now let’s say you get up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom or something and you stub your toe and it’s really really painful. Now, you know, the pain is felt here in this body, it’s not felt by some guy in China, you know. So…

Prajnaparamita: Yes, is that me?

Rick: Who feels the pain?

Prajnaparamita: That is also true. That is also true. But it is of another order. So what I experience, and I see you, and we have this lofty conversation, this is  our experiences that are held in time and space, and this has a relative truth. So yes, I hurt my toe, it really hurts. This is also true.

Rick: Okay, so would it be more true to say then, rather than “there is no self”, would it be true to say there is a relative self in a sort of a relative conditional sense, but at a deeper level perhaps there is not? Like you could say, “Sure, there are waves, but just because you realize that you’re the ocean doesn’t mean you’re not also a wave. It’s just not you’re primarily a wave, you’re primarily the ocean, but also expressing as a particular wave”. Would that be a…

Prajnaparamita: This is exactly what I mean Rick.

Rick: Okay, yeah. Because sometimes people put it in kind of absolute terms like nothing, no self and I don’t understand that.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, but for the mind it seems so strange because the mind says, “Come on, be clear, is it this or is it that?” But the heart perfectly understands. The heart says, “Oh yeah, it is this and that, of course. I am the great unifier”.

Rick: Back when I was growing up there was a commercial on TV for these mints that you could buy, and there were these two twins that were having this argument. And one was saying, “It’s a candy mint”, and the other was saying, “No, it’s a breath mint”, and then they were going back and forth and then this voice comes in saying, “Stop, you’re both right, it’s two mints in one”.

Prajnaparamita: That’s it, that’s it, yeah, that’s how I see it.

Rick: Yeah, okay, good. So that kind of resolves that paradox. I mean, paradoxes… let’s talk about paradox a little bit. I heard you use that word in your S.A.N.D. talk and it’s one of my favorite words. So, let’s go on about that a little bit more. What would you like to say about paradox?

Prajnaparamita: Every statement ultimately falls short. So we can only relate, connect, express in relative terms. Everything is seen from a particular point of view. Whatever I say or whatever you say, whatever we experience is true because it is connected to the place from where we speak, from where we experience. But it is only one point of view. And your point of view is different from mine and both is true. So what is right, what is true? It is all true. And none of it.

Rick: Yeah, there was a line from Bob Dylan – one of his songs, he said, “You’re right from your side and I’m right from mine”.

Prajnaparamita: Exactly, exactly, yeah, yeah.

Rick: So, do you have the sense that there is a larger truth which contains all points of view and reconciles all points of view?

Prajnaparamita: Exactly, exactly, yeah. Where everything is met in this great mystery. And what a silence this is, and what a peace this is, and what a source of love.

Rick: To what extent do you think a human being can embody that larger reality, that larger wholeness that contains and reconciles all points of view?

Prajnaparamita: I think many people can, many. Maybe it is a little bit difficult or very difficult for people who have a mental illness. But people are mentally healthy if they want, if they really really want, and never give up, they can, because it is our nature, it’s home. This is what we are and have always been and we are clouded by ideas that we believe to be true.

Rick: Papaji was famous for saying and is still quoted by many people, “Give up the search”, but you just said that you have to really, really want this and never give up. How do you reconcile Papaji’s statement with what you just said?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, at some point, give it up. At some point, when people are really ready and mature, then I say the same, just let it all go and rest in yourself. But up to some point, you know, people must really have a lot of self-confidence and be very honest. This is something that is easily forgotten, that people think they don’t need to be honest. I think you have to be bone-marrow honest to admit, to see, to acknowledge, to no longer hide in belief systems, in pacifying strategies, all of that. You need to be very honest.

Rick: That’s good. Yeah, you said in one of your writings, there are some qualities that greatly serve you on your inner journey. You mentioned honesty as one of them and also trust and courage. Maybe we could also, maybe we talk about all three of those qualities.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, well, courage to meet your fears and maybe traumas – whatever you have been trying to run away from, whatever you have been trying to protect – to just meet it and experience it and no longer resist it and no longer cling to anything, all of that. And usually that takes a while before you can really allow everything, all of life to come and to go as it pleases.

Rick: Yeah, have you experienced and observed that, I mean, what you just said – it takes a while. Is there sort of a natural, in a way… Even though it ultimately may not be desirable, is it sort of healthy in a sense that we don’t open the whole Pandora’s box all at once – of all the fears and everything else that might be bottled up within us – but sort of metabolize them in stages according to our capacity at each stage? Would you agree with that?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, the journey that I have made and that I also go with my students is a very natural way. Things surface by themselves in their own time and it is all perfect. It is too much for many people, it’s too much when it would all come at once. And I’ve seen it with Prapaji also that people opened up like, “Whoa!” You know, I think, “Whoa!” But who can contain it? Again, Gangaji, she can contain it.

Rick: Who?

Prajnaparamita: Gangaji.

Rick: Oh, Gangaji.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, she can contain it, but many could not. Many of them I have seen half a year later, a year later, in great despair because they have peeked into the kitchen of God and they have experienced how it is to be so elated and so happy and so blissful. And then again they find themselves in their stuff. So yeah, I really have experienced over the last decades how good it is when you can contain it, when you are ready, when you are mature and then stop it all. Stop all trying, all doing your best, all attempt to figure it out, you know – stop it all and just rest.

Rick: And how do you know when you’ve reached that stage?

Prajnaparamita: My heart knows.

Rick: Or one’s heart knows, you mean anyone who has reached that stage, their heart knows?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, you know, I only know the people that I’m with, I only know the students that I’m with and then my heart knows and I tell them, “Just let it, just leave it now, just leave it, just rest”.

Rick: Do you feel that, again have you observed that sometimes these big blissful openings end up stirring things up? It’s sort of like they become like this solvent in which more of the stuff can get dissolved and until that solvent is there the stuff remains buried.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, it can also be a shock that opens people. I think many different things – it can also be nature, it can be music – it can be anything that brings the next, let me say the word, layer or the next thing up to the surface to be experienced.

Rick: Yeah, it’s kind of almost a cliché that, you know, at least in the circles that we travel in, that nature is intelligent and that the world is our guru and that everything happens to us is happening for a reason and that would include even sort of dire circumstances, they happen because we need to have that particular experience to shock us into the next stage.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah. Well, I don’t know. What I have come to see is that there is a very profound perfection and that there is nothing really out of place. I don’t go in the direction of, “Oh, I need this because…”. No, this is just happening.

Rick: So, in other words, you don’t try to logically figure out why something is happening, you just, “It’s happening”.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, “It’s happening and I better deal with it”.

Rick: Yeah, and you probably have a trust that… do you have a trust that all is well and wisely put and if something is happening you may not know the reason but there’s some kind of divine orchestration going on?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah. There is a perfection moving through everything that is way beyond my capacity to understand. And it only requires surrender. So perfection is the other side of surrender to me. So when I protest to something that is happening, I know I’m not bowing deep enough. That’s how I live.

Rick: That’s beautiful. How many years ago was it when you had that opening in Rishikesh?

Prajnaparamita: Almost 20 years.

Rick: Oh, a long time. And if you were to look back over the last 20 years, would you say that there has been a continued deepening or refinement or some such word?

Prajnaparamita: No, not really.

Rick: Really? So you pretty much are exactly the same as you were 20 years ago when that awakening happened.

Prajnaparamita: That is from my point of view. Maybe my students tell me different things, but this is how I see. There’s actually nothing really happening. There’s nothing. There’s nothing. So I hear from many people that they have this deepening and more subtle and more subtle… I look again and I look again and I look again, and I don’t see it.

Rick: Well, the reason I ask…

Prajnaparamita: I see the sameness. The sameness is so prominent, you know, that is what I see. Same, same, same, same, nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing, everything, everything, everything, everything, like that.

Rick: Well, the reason I ask that question is that you had just said that there’s this profound mystery and if you feel that you’re resisting something then you haven’t surrendered enough into that mystery. And so I thought, okay, well maybe she’s surrendering more and more deeply as the years go by, that there’s sort of a more and more and more of a complete immersion in that mystery or something.

Prajnaparamita: No, when I say that, that I don’t bow enough, that is more on the level of that “coffee is no longer in my kitchen”.

Rick: What does that mean?

Prajnaparamita: It means that I want coffee and there is no coffee. I mean on a very superficial level.

Rick: Little things.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, little things.

Rick: Okay.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah, little things. And sometimes I can have also a moment of great irritation, of great upset. Sometimes when I watch the news, you know, I can get so upset, but it is very short.

Rick: How did you react to the terrorism in Paris that happened a month ago?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, a bleeding heart. Yeah, all the time. My heart is always bleeding and I could cry for the rest of my life. But then I remember, you know, and I insist, I really insist on living love no matter what.

Rick: Yeah, here’s a… we asked in the questionnaire, current teaching emphasis, and you said, “Be aware on all levels of life, live your spiritual insights, allow love to overwhelm you, be natural”.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, this is how we live in France. You know, we live here, my students come and go in the rhythm of their life, what they can, their families work, of course. So all year that I’m here, the people come and go and we live as a tribe and we have big gardens and we restore the buildings and we work on the land and we just learn to be kind with each other and it’s a very very beautiful, nourishing and awakening way of life here, serving the people deeply.

Rick: Do you serve people outside of your little community or mainly you mean serving each other within the community?

Prajnaparamita: Whoever is approaching me.

Rick: Just looking at some quotes from what you wrote, here’s one – you said, “It’s not the fulfillment of desires that sets us free, it is the realization that freedom is free of all desire. Real stillness is pervading all sounds, real stillness is nowhere not. Real stillness can be found in the midst of battle”.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, this is something big I had to learn. Yeah, yeah, it’s unconditional. You know, this freedom is really unconditional. When I was with especially ShantiMayi in those days, I wanted this stillness so much, you know, I wanted to be in this absorption and not to be disturbed. There were always constructions going on and motors and people chasing me away because they wanted to do something there or… there was never a moment of, or never is a big word…

Rick: Seldom.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, it was not there. But I found, you know, this mystery that is really unconditional and it is silent no matter what. So that is of course much more powerful.

Rick: Yeah, well I mean you remember the story of the Bhagavad Gita, speaking of battle, the highest teaching was imparted on a battlefield, as a war was about to begin. And it was imparted in response to the question from the warrior, “What should I do in this situation?” And the answer was, “Get established in being”.

Prajnaparamita: Right. Yeah. Yeah.

Rick: So how have you seen your students’ lives change and transform and have some of them been with you for two decades or something?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, well the man you just saw now, Shanto, is my first student. So I’ve known him for a very long time. And with many people, we’ve been together for a very long time and it is my great delight to see the shine in their eyes, to see the shine in the eyes coming and the ease in their lives and the happiness and the joy, the lightheartedness. And of course there are also people going. They are always coming and going and then some stay. Some stay for a while and take what they want and move on and many stay.

Rick: As you did. I mean you went through several different teachers. There is a woman named Mirabai Starr whom I interviewed a couple of years ago or a year ago and she gave this nice talk called “Bees in the Garden” and she sort of drew the analogy of honeybees that go from flower to flower and extract the nectar and kind of cross-pollinate as they go along.

Prajnaparamita: Yes, yes. There is something beautiful in that and there is also something very beautiful to stay with one master because you go deep together. When the trust is there you go really hand in hand and heart in heart and the Guru can be a bridge.

Rick: Yeah, you know there is that saying of dig one deep hole rather than a dozen shallow holes.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Then somebody put a variation on it. They said, “Well, how about using a dozen tools to dig one deep hole?” So would you say that it really depends upon the individual?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, people can do what they want. I don’t want anything from them. I encourage them, assure them and enlighten their path. It is up to them, and it is in their nature also how deep they want to go in their own life.

Rick: You know, there is a kind of popular sentiment among some people that you don’t need a teacher and you can be your own teacher. Even the word “Guru” has kind of a negative connotation in some people’s minds, in part because of some of the stuff that so-called Gurus have done. But obviously, I don’t know if you call yourself a Guru or not, maybe you do. You can explain to us what the word actually means and would you use the word with reference to yourself and maybe talk a little bit about the significance of having a teacher.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, okay, I know what you say, I know. And it is almost a word that you can hardly use and for me it is a principle that may be embodied by a person, but it is a principle. The word is made of “Gu” and “ru”, and it means eradicating ignorance, eradicating darkness. So it is completely impersonal. And for me, the Guru has saved my life and brought my life into this light, so I am incredibly grateful. And there is so much beauty and mystery in this sacred – for me – sacred connection. And people can see me as they want. I am nothing, I am nothing, but you can label me as a Guru because this is the work that I am doing. But for me it is empty also.

Rick: It is empty meaning?

Prajnaparamita: It is a privilege.

Rick: What’s that?

Prajnaparamita: My life, this has been such a treasure and privilege, the deepest, the most intimate, the most sacred connection.

Rick: Yeah, isn’t it lovely to feel that you are being used as a sort of a tool of the Divine?

Prajnaparamita: Right.

Rick: I mean, wouldn’t you say in retrospect perhaps that there is something much more rich to your life than there might have been had you gone and sat in the Himalayas like you wanted to?

Prajnaparamita: Maybe, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Rick: Some treasure.

Prajnaparamita: Well, actually I have known this all my life, since I was very small I knew that I would be used. I knew it all and my master just had to push me because there was no impulse. Of course it is an incredible privilege to share my life and what has been shown to me with so many beautiful beings. It is sacred and it is easily trod upon these days. And the word spirituality also is a word I cannot even hear it anymore. It is so abused.

Rick: Yeah, so either we have to carefully define our terms or we have to come up with new ones I guess.

Prajnaparamita: Right, yeah, yeah, yeah. But yes, of course the Guru is within, of course. So if you find one in the physical form, that one is holding a mirror.

Rick: What about the principle of transmission? I mean, we can do spiritual practices, we can meditate and so on, but many people feel that there is sort of a shortcut in a sense – as you did with ShantiMayi – and if you can sit in the immediate proximity of someone who is living that, it can be a powerful shortcut.

Prajnaparamita: I don’t know if that is a shortcut, but it is very powerful.

Rick: Yeah.

Prajnaparamita: When you are ready to receive the language of silence, then it is what a gift, what a gift, what a gift!

Rick: Have any of your students woken up in the way that you did, or to a significant degree? How many?

Prajnaparamita: I really don’t know.

Rick: It is hard to give a number.

Prajnaparamita: It is so intimate, you know, a few.

Rick: A few, okay.

Prajnaparamita: But many are over the hill.

Rick: Yeah, that is a nice metaphor. So they are just coasting now, they are going to hit it.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah.

Rick: You mentioned in one of the things you wrote that there are massive changes – not only on our planet but in the universe, and it seems we are entering now into a completely different timespan that is very beautiful actually, that is more ruled by what is called feminine energy – more caring and more united. A lot of people – I guess so-called spiritual people – a lot of people feel that sometimes it seems like it is wishful thinking when you look at the news. I mean, you were mentioning earlier your reaction to looking at the news sometimes. So what gives you the confidence that that is actually true and that we are not just sort of wishfully thinking?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah. The younger generations, the children, the creativity of the people in their 20s and their 30s, and how unburdened and how light-hearted and how creative, how innovative they are. I see such a big difference between the older generations and the make-up of their psyche and the younger generations. I’m just elated by the younger people and how from the people the new is brought into the world and that the big corporations are just falling apart. I mean, it seems to me there is a big battle going on. I may be wrong, but this is what I observe, the younger people.

Rick: So, do you feel, when you say the younger people, when you refer to them, are you saying that they are doing something that is explicitly spiritual, that there is a zeal for awakening and enlightenment and all that stuff, or are you just talking more of the arts and music and science and whatever else they are getting into?

Prajnaparamita: And they want experiences. They go for the experiences. So they want also novelty, novelty, new, new, come on, let’s have something new, experiences, traveling, experiences, experiences, and that can give them a lot and it can also hold them on a superficial place, both. But I feel, you know, there was so much more density everywhere a couple of decades ago. It’s so easy now to see through everything. Everything seems to be so much more vibrant and transparent.

Rick: That’s nice. I’ve heard the analogy used that back in the days of the Buddha or whatever, there was a very thick veil and it took kind of a superman like him to break through that veil and see the reality, but now it’s like this thin piece of silk or something.

Prajnaparamita: Exactly. Yeah, yeah. And only two or three decades ago, my God, it was so thick. When I was in search of this big secret, there was nobody in Holland. And now, these people are everywhere. And how mindfulness has come into the world over the last decade. So mindfulness – I mean, this we can say, this is okay to say.

Rick: Sure. Mindfulness in many forms. I mean, mindfulness per se, the mindfulness practice is even being taught in corporations and stuff, but all forms of spiritual endeavor are becoming mainstream it seems.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, well, particularly mindfulness. Hatha yoga. I don’t know how spiritual that is, but Hatha yoga. So it is opening, it is opening. But these non-dual teachings – not so much.

Rick: Elaborate on that.

Prajnaparamita: It’s so radical.

Rick: Radical.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, it’s so radical.

Rick: Too radical.

Prajnaparamita: Who is willing to give up their position? Who is willing to acknowledge being nobody? You have to give up your whole identity – everything that people have built up in their lives to come to see that there’s nothing really there and that you are not important and all your position, this is still not so many people who really really really want to pierce this.

Rick: But I mean, non-dual Advaita…

Prajnaparamita: Sorry.

Rick: No, you go ahead.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, people go to feel good. They want to feel good.

Rick: But that can be a stepping stone though, like you say, Hatha Yoga is that spiritual? Well, yeah, but it can be the first step for somebody.

Prajnaparamita: Absolutely, that’s often the case, yeah, to feel good and to be comfortable, yeah.

Rick: And you know, I mean, non-dual means Advaita – not two – and Advaita is the province of Vedanta. And Vedanta means end of the Veda, and so by the time you’ve reached the end there’s a whole lot of stuff that you may have gone through. And Veda means knowledge, so there might be a whole lot of stuff you have gone through to get to the end. So, it’s not necessarily that everybody in the world should just jump to the end, maybe they need to go through this, that and the other thing before it even becomes relevant to them, right?

Prajnaparamita: Right, right. It was so funny when I first met Alexander, he was talking about this immediacy and the end of cognitive knowledge and I said, “Okay, give me, give me, give me, show me, show me now! You talk about immediacy, you talk about now, come on, come on!” And he was just like…

Rick: Cool it.

Prajnaparamita: I was so passionate and he said, “Oh, you can be here but I don’t want to hear you, so you just sit”.

Rick: That’s great.

Prajnaparamita: Shut up. So, I just made my ears very very big and I was sitting there.

Rick: Kept your mouth shut.

Prajnaparamita: Kept my mouth shut, yeah.

Rick: One of the essays that you wrote, you have used the line, “Insight is not liberation”. Let’s elaborate on that a bit.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, so during our journey – life journey or awakening journey – we get many insights. “Oh, it is like this. Oh, I always thought it was like that but it is not so”. So that is somebody who is having an insight, and that still is centered around this person who has an insight. And liberation actually is taking the insights and the one who has the insight – takes it both away – and what is left is spaciousness.

Rick: So, would another way of phrasing this insight versus liberation be to say insight is almost like an intellectual understanding or something, whereas liberation is experience? Kind of like the difference between understanding… hearing a lecture about what an orange tastes like and actually eating one?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah. The insight does not always need to be intellectual. It can be intellectual but it can be more profound than that.

Rick: Intuitive.

Prajnaparamita: But still it is connected to the one who is experiencing this insight and that one is dissolved in the liberation.

Rick: So, just to pursue this a little further – so once that one has been dissolved in liberation, are there still insights within the context of liberation or have you gone beyond the relevance of that idea of insights?

Prajnaparamita: I can only speak of my experience and I don’t know about spiritual insights anymore. Sometimes I have insights on many different levels, on many different subjects – of course, this goes on, yeah. But like all these years with these beautiful insights and, it’s no longer there, it’s stopped.

Rick: Would it be correct to say, just to clarify the point, that insights have kind of taken a subsidiary role like a backseat, and the experience, the liberation is the proper dominant thing? So, it’s not like you don’t have them anymore, it’s just that they’re not kind of the driving force.

Prajnaparamita: Maybe, maybe, yeah, maybe.

Rick: Someone sent in a question, Jean Lewis Bell from Australia asks, “Could you talk about life without purpose?” We mentioned that in the beginning, didn’t we?

Prajnaparamita: Oh yeah.

Rick: “Do you see a purpose as an important part of a spiritual path or as a burden to be free from? Is a purpose something you want to do or something you have to do or are you better off with or without a purpose?” I guess that’s the question, “Are you better off with or without a purpose?”, he’s asking.

Prajnaparamita: So, when you embark on your spiritual journey, I mean, I think purpose is very important. I want to awaken. So that is the line you put out and you bring your passion and your energy and your enthusiasm, you bring in there and you are striving towards this goal. But at some point… It can bring you a long way, but at some point you realize that this horizon is always moving away from you and it is more fruitful to see yourself as an awakening being – that you’re just here, right here, and you see yourself expanding and that gives such a rest – because you take the goal out, you take the horizon out, you take time out, and you sit in yourself by yourself, and you just expand and that gives a lot of rest.

Rick: That’s nice, you just described my life.

Prajnaparamita: Oh, nice.

Rick: You know, I mean, there were years of desperation and then somehow, I don’t even know when, but somehow it got to more of a – like you say – resting. And it’s not that I… people say, “Geez, you know, you’ve been at this for almost 50 years, Rick, why don’t you just relax?” And I am relaxed, but I’m still passionate about this stuff. It’s like, I feel like a kid in a candy shop, it’s this great exploration, adventure. Whoa, great fun.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, same with me, I’m incredibly passionate.

Rick: Yeah, enthusiastic.

Prajnaparamita: It’s such a help, you know, when we do no longer have to chase the goal. And we just finally relax.

Rick: Yeah, there’s a saying, “The goal is all along the path”.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. And the path is more from the head to the heart and from ignorance to wisdom.

Rick: You brought up a question about free will. You said in one of your writings, you said, “As long as you believe that you are somebody, that you are a person, it seems that you have a free will”. So from this angle, yes, there is a free will. I’m making coffee, I’m putting on a pullover, but when you start forgetting about yourself, all of you melt into the Divine Will. Then you find that there is nobody to have a free will, and you realize that existence has always been expressing itself totally spontaneous by itself. It’s not a question really, but maybe you could elaborate on that if you want.

Prajnaparamita: Let me see. Yeah, you know, something is happening and the response is so immediate and so spontaneous. It doesn’t need me giving it any direction. It’s just completely happening by itself. Again this is such a relaxation, that it doesn’t need the tension of me with wanting, it is obvious.

Rick: So you feel like you’re not the doer, you feel like things are just happening and you’re kind of…

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, and I dance along.

Rick: Yeah, just speaking of the Gita, there’s verses and verses in the Gita about that kind of thing too – that it’s the Gunas of nature that perform action, and you do not act at all, and so on.

Prajnaparamita: Ultimately not, no.

Rick: But, I would echo what you said in your quote here, which is that if you perceive yourself as having a free will, then exercise it to the best of your ability as long as that’s the way you’re wired.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah. So then make your best choices.

Rick: Yeah. What kind of practices do you advocate? I notice that you impart mantras and have people chanting the Gayatri mantra and your lineage does that sort of thing also. Want to talk about that a little bit?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, of course I was raised in Advaita Vedanta and my guru was “Mantras, No, no, no.” Later I heard…

Rick: Which one? Which guru said that? Alexander?

Prajnaparamita: Alexander.

Rick: Alexander, right.

Prajnaparamita: So I was like looking down on mantras, it felt like that “we don’t go there, we don’t do that”. But later I heard that Nisargadatta – he always had his satsangs in the attic of his house. But when the Westerners were gone and the Indians were there, he was chanting along with them and ringing the bells and doing the mantras and the songs and bringing the very Indian flavor. But I never received that from my guru in Holland. And then later I came with ShantiMayi and there were all these rituals and the mantras and the singing. And I had to get used to it a little bit and then I learned to validate that and I learned to love it too. And yeah, we bring the Gayatri mantra – not many mantras, basically the Gayatri mantra. And people who love it, they recite it and if they don’t love it, they don’t. It’s just one of the offerings. Like we do also fire ceremonies and if you want it you come, if you don’t want it you don’t. But basically it is the satsang, being together.

Rick: Being together, yeah. So all that stuff just gives you something sweet to do while you’re together.

Prajnaparamita: Say it again please.

Rick: I say all that stuff just gives you some sweet devotional sort of exercise to do while you’re together, as opposed to just renovating barns or something.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, we do that too. And we also have a music group and we sing.

Rick: Like bhajans and things?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, mantras and songs from many different traditions worldwide. Wherever I come and meet the spiritual groups, doesn’t matter if it is Maori or Russian or African, we learn their sacred songs and we sing them.

Rick: Nice. Yeah, I had heard that also about Nisargadatta from Timothy Conway, who spent a lot of time with Nisargadatta. And he said also that when all the Westerners left, Nisargadatta would get out the cymbals and start doing bhajans and he’d do pujas and all that kind of stuff.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, it’s so sweet, so wonderful.

Rick: And you know Shankara also, who was one of the founders of Vedanta, was a great bhakta also. He wrote some beautiful devotional poetry such as Bhaja Govindam and all kinds of beautiful stuff. So, it’s not opposed.

Prajnaparamita: It’s always there. Every jnani has a bhakta heart and every bhakta has a clear mind, so they meet.

Rick: That’s a good point. I feel strongly about that point because a lot of times non-duality is presented in this sort of dry heartless tone and I don’t think that’s what the real giants of that…

Prajnaparamita: They are all juicy. And they have lots of humor and lots of softness and lots of love. They have to meet, the bhakta and jnani, they have to meet. That’s how I see it.

Rick: I mean Ramana too, look at him, he was devoted to Arunachala and it was a very devotional sort of thing. Here’s something you wrote that contradicts something you just said earlier.

Prajnaparamita: Okay.

Rick: “Self-realization is no ultimate state of being. Be prepared to deepen forever, to widen forever, to be more subtle, more refined, more and more sensitive. There is no end”.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Remember what we were saying half an hour ago? You’re saying nothing’s changed in the last 20 years? So how do you reconcile those?

Prajnaparamita: I don’t know. I feel that is equally true. It’s very strange – talking about paradoxes. I feel that when you say this, I say yes. When we had this little conversation earlier, I say yes. I don’t understand it.

Rick: Yeah. So that’s good. I mean I’m glad I wrote that down last night because… and again it brings us back to paradoxes, almost anything you can say, you can say the opposite and both are true.

Prajnaparamita: That is exactly so.

Rick: Yeah. So nothing changes…

Prajnaparamita: I’m continuously surprised that it is like that. But it is so light and so playful and so spacious.

Rick: There’s a line from a Simon and Garfunkel song, “After changes upon changes we are more or less the same. After changes we are more or less the same”.

Prajnaparamita: Wonderful. Yeah.

Rick: So you also, in addition to the singing and the chanting and the things we were just talking about, I guess you also do a private initiation with some people who want it. You give them a bija mantra or something, a way of technique for meditating with it?

Prajnaparamita: That is related to the lineage of ShantiMayi Maharaj. It is a very ancient Vedic lineage and they do these initiations. Yes, I do. I do it rarely, sparsely, but I do it, yeah. It’s beautiful. It is a sealing. It’s a sealing of what is already obvious inside.

Rick: S-E-A-L-I-N-G, not C-E-I-L-I-N-G. Right? It seals it.

Prajnaparamita: S-E-A, right. Yeah.

Rick: And why do you do it rarely? Because most people aren’t qualified for it, most people don’t want it, or what?

Prajnaparamita: People take things so lightly.

Rick: Pardon?

Prajnaparamita: People take things so lightly. Sometimes they ask it and by the time the moment is there, they are already gone.

Rick: They are not interested anymore or something?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, they pass by. So for me, you know, this is also something so deep and I don’t want to go like woof, woof, woof with it.

Rick: Right. And so if someone takes that initiation, gets the mantra, do you expect a more serious commitment – like you expect them to sit and actually use it on a regular basis?

Prajnaparamita: No.

Rick: No?

Prajnaparamita: No. I got a mantra and I have hardly ever used it. And some people love the mantra and use it all the time and some people don’t, and everything is fine. I don’t expect anything. I don’t expect anything from them. If they want, I’m here.

Rick: Yeah, that’s interesting because some teachers want certain commitments from their students, you know, “Okay, well if I’m going to do this, then I want you to do this”,  and there has to be a certain kind of dedication or commitment or something, but you don’t seem to have that.

Prajnaparamita: Well, it is inwardly and that’s why I do it sparsely. So okay, if they want it, then maybe a year later we do it or two years later.

Rick: See if they still want it.

Prajnaparamita: Let’s see, let’s see if you can stand some storms, you know. Let’s see what we are worth together. Do you really trust me enough? Do you really trust our togetherness enough to move on also when things are not so nice? You know, let’s see. So I wait.

Rick: And what would be an example of things not being so nice? The reason I ask is that some teachers are kind of very strict, they might test their students by making them do very difficult things or being angry at them. Do you do that kind of stuff or are you just saying that… are you always as nice as you are in this interview?

Prajnaparamita: No, I mean, there may be anger, you know, at some point of course, but I don’t do anger, and I don’t test them. Life is testing them. Life is testing them and they may feel for me that I am testing them, but I’m not doing that. They may feel that I pressure them, but they only feel that when they resist, then they pressure. When they don’t resist, they get in touch with whatever stuff there is and it can dissolve. So people can come and people can go.

Rick: I noticed that you said that you’re the mother of two children and that you raised them by yourself from a very young age. Did you raise them?

Prajnaparamita: Yes, yes. I divorced when the children were very young. When I met Alexander, he said, “What are you afraid of?” And I said, “What do I have to do to my children?” Because I sensed immediately this will cost me my marriage, and it did. So when they were very young, I walked out of my marriage. It was not possible to walk the road of truth in this marriage. I knew that would be very very painful to them, but I had to do it.

Rick: And that of course doesn’t happen to everybody, but I guess maybe in your case your husband didn’t understand what you were doing and couldn’t really be supportive.

Prajnaparamita: No, no. He was far from supportive and it didn’t work. I tried very very hard, but it was impossible. But I’ve seen with my students, when their togetherness is good it will get better. It will get so sweet and so wonderful and so honest and so serving to each other. But when it is not good, it may fall apart because truth is the boss.

Rick: Yeah. That’s a good thing.

Prajnaparamita: And I feel that I’m a servant to truth and I have to listen. And my students learn to understand that – that they have to listen to truth and that’s completely impersonal.

Rick: How old are your kids now?

Prajnaparamita: Oh, they’re in their 30s and they’re thriving.

Rick: Oh, they’re doing fine. Yeah. Are they interested in the spiritual stuff?

Prajnaparamita: My daughter, but she’s going completely her own way and she’s going her own way and she’s very very wise and very wonderful. And my son is building his life and his family, but deep down there is the seed.

Rick: So you’re a grandma now?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah. Yeah. Also, yeah.

Rick: Okay. So what else would we like to cover? I have a feeling that there’s a lot more you could say and we could go on all day, but what do you feel is important that you would like people to know that I might not have thought to ask you?

Prajnaparamita: Let me see. Yeah, you know, often people say, “Oh, my spiritual life and my daily life”, but I encourage them not to make any split anywhere, and that really what you see to be true, that you live it, that you don’t intellectualize it, that you don’t conceptualize it,, and that you make it separate. Okay, this is how it is. No, you have a responsibility there. You have a responsibility to live what you see – what you see, what you acknowledge to be true. And there is one life, so it is rippling out, this wisdom or these insights or these realizations that they have is rippling out in all their actions, in their work, in their family, with the neighbors, in the shops, and everywhere.

Rick: Yeah, that’s good. I mean, how could you separate them because spiritual life is supposed to be all-encompassing and all-… how can you compartmentalize or separate it?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, still many people apparently do that. So again, again, again, I encourage them to live it and this is all about living, being natural. It’s nothing special, it’s being natural and unburdened and light-hearted and playful.

Rick: And perhaps treating others with compassion and kindness and all those good qualities.

Prajnaparamita: Yes, yes, yes.

Rick: Yeah, because sometimes when people get really fanatical about spirituality they become sort of narcissistic or something, you know, self-absorbed. It’s like, “Me, me, me, my experiences and my routine and my this and my that and to hell with everybody else”.

Prajnaparamita: Yes, yes, yes, it’s something else too. Yeah.

Rick: And what else should we cover? Is there anything else that… have you written any books or anything?

Prajnaparamita: Written?

Rick: Yeah, have you published a book or anything like that?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, well, in two months maybe.

Rick: Oh, good.

Prajnaparamita: It’s done, it’s done. In two weeks I will send it to the publisher.

Rick: Will it be in English?

Prajnaparamita: In Dutch.

Rick: In Dutch.

Prajnaparamita: First in Dutch. I will translate it.

Rick: Get it translated.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Oh, okay. Be sure and let me know when you do so I can put up a link to it.

Prajnaparamita: Nice, thank you.

Rick: And so if somebody wanted to come to France and hang out with you for a while, and if they want – do you have people coming from like the United States and Australia and places like that or mostly from around Europe?

Prajnaparamita: No, from all over the world, mostly of course around Europe and mostly from Holland because I’ve invested most in Holland. But tomorrow there are two Kiwis coming from New Zealand and from England, they are coming from Scotland and from Iceland – well, many many countries, but most of them from Holland.

Rick: And so do you have the capacity there to have more people usually?

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, we can accommodate on the property 40 people and another 20 in the village. Usually we have like 20 people here, 20 and tomorrow we have 50. So I have a Christmas retreat starting tomorrow for two weeks and then every week we have like 50 people. And in Holland, I give every six weeks a weekend and then we have 100 people. So I like to meet people first in Holland actually before they come to France. That is what I prefer, to get to know each other a little bit because it is very intense here and we live all like a family here, so people must feel comfortable that we get to know each other a little bit.

Rick: But what if somebody lives in the US and they want to come for a while but it’s not practical for them to go to Holland first?

Prajnaparamita: That’s right, so we take the risk.

Rick: Yeah, or maybe you could talk to them on Skype or something and get to know them a little bit.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, yeah, yeah. also that, well, tomorrow people are coming that I’ve never met before. We take the risk, but I really, really prefer if it is possible that we meet before, because of the setting here, you know.

Rick: The intimacy and the intensity.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, intensity and also that we live like a family here.

Rick: Right, one big family.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah.

Rick: Yeah, you don’t want any drunks at the party or anything.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, like that, yeah.

Rick: Is it very expensive to come and stay there?

Prajnaparamita: No, I don’t think so. We make it as cheap as possible. And also people… the quality is very high. The quality of the food, you know, and of beauty here and the care of the animals and the land and the gardens and the kindness – it’s all very, very high. But we make the price as low as possible and that is possible because everybody is helping. So everybody participates on the land or in the house for a couple of hours a day and we do it all together. And it’s really very very very wonderful.

Rick: Including you, right? I mean, you get in there and wash the dishes or whatever.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, including me. I’m not so much in the kitchen, but I’m at the brambles, getting the brambles out.

Rick: Right.

Prajnaparamita: Yeah, I’m in the garden too.

Rick: Are there some people who live there year-round?

Prajnaparamita: Yes, we have three people – a young couple and another woman – and they hold the place and the gardens and the animals, yeah. And I’m here most of the year.

Rick: Can people bring children with them if they need to?

Prajnaparamita: Yes, in the summer. We love the children during the summer, but for the Christmas retreat it doesn’t fit so well.

Rick: Right.

Prajnaparamita: We don’t invite children for Christmas, but during the summer, I mean, there’s so much nature and so lovely for the children and so lovely to have the children and this vibrancy and it’s very wonderful. Yeah, they love to be here also.

Rick: Good. All righty, well I don’t think I have any more questions at the moment and if you don’t have anything else from your side I should probably wrap it up. No one has sent in any more questions – last chance if anyone wants to send in a question. So it’s really been a delight speaking with you. Any final words before I summarize and wrap it up?

Prajnaparamita: Happy Christmas.

Rick: Thank you. Happy Christmas to you.

Prajnaparamita: Thank you.

Rick: So I’ve been speaking with Prajnaparamita, and don’t need to explain who she is because we just did that. This is part of an ongoing series of interviews, and as I said in the beginning you can find all the previous ones on, B-A-T-G-A-P. You can sign up for the audio podcast there, you can sign up to be notified by email each time a new one is posted, which is usually one a week. You can also subscribe on YouTube and YouTube will notify you every time a new one is posted. There’s a donate button, which we appreciate people clicking to help support this, and several other things if you explore around. Before too long we’re going to have a system back in place where people can recommend guests. We haven’t had that working for a while, and it’s being built by someone with a nice database backend so it will be very systematic and you can recommend people and vote for people who are already recommended and so on. So thank you for listening or watching, and thanks to you Prajnaparamita, and we’ll see you all for the next one.

Prajnaparamita: Thank you Rick. Bye-bye.

Rick: Bye-bye.