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Rick Archer: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer, Buddha, the gas pump is an ongoing series of interviews with spiritually Awakening people. I’ve done hundreds of them now. And if this is new to you, and you’d like to check out previous ones, please go to batgap.com Bat gap, and look under the past interviews menu. This show is made possible by the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it, and we’d like to support it, there’s a PayPal button on every page of the site. We appreciate the support that comes in. My guest today is Sean Webb. And Sean and I taped about a two hour interview yesterday. And then after the interview, he told me some really cool stuff that I if I had managed to read his 1000 Plus pages of book material I would have known to ask about. But unfortunately, the plane flight wasn’t that long. So I didn’t know. And I said, John, you should have said that during the interview and that so I decided to just tape a little bit here. To have him cover the points that he told me after we did the interview. And then we’ll cut to yesterday’s interview. So you’ll see a change of clothing and change of lighting and stuff. And but I’m just saying this, you’ll know why. It’s not something that reminds you a funny story I was I was doing an interview at home one time. And there’s a flower behind me on my left. And I really didn’t like the way the flower was positioned. And so at a certain point, she kind of reached in and you couldn’t see your hand. And she turned the flower. So, so a better side of it was facing the camera. And people actually wrote it, it was a miracle. I saw the flower turn while you were talking anyway, so we’re gonna get into a lot about Sean in in the interview, but the most significant thing that he left out, was talking about the awakening he had, and he we kind of glossed over it. You know, he says, oh, yeah, I was one with the universe. I knew everything. And then we went on to some other points. Right? So I want you to sort of flush it out take five or 10 minutes to really explain what happened because it was really profound and unusual, in how radically it shifted your life. And overnight. Really? That’s true. Yeah. So let’s do it.
Sean Webb: Okay. So long story short, you know, my, you know, you have guests who have gone through this type of awakening type of thing. And I got there by, you know, being successful in business and being this high tech engineer and accumulating this wealth and all this other stuff that I thought could deliver me happiness, and it hadn’t delivered me happiness. So I went on the search and yadda yadda. And I started reading a bunch of books about world religions and wanted to compare it to how I had been brought up in the Christian religion, find out what other people thought about divinity in God and things like that. So I thought maybe there’s something I’m missing within myself, that could deliver the happiness that all this success had not. And so I picked up a book by dt Suzuki, Introduction to Zen, and started to understand that the Zen tradition is to sit in meditation for a long time, in a painful position, to basically try to cease all conscious thought. And so I started meditating after that point, so I hadn’t meditated before, I’d know nothing about it. And after just a few, like, a couple of weeks, probably, I’d done some experiments with him. I’d read more into the book, and I’d read more into meditation from other sources. And this Zen stuff was, you know, sees conscious thought, and I thought, well, how difficult can that be? Right? And so I tried it for a few days and failed and fell asleep a couple times and one up just ending the meditation at some point where I was distracted and whatnot. And then, about two weeks, maybe two and a half weeks in, I went in with the intention. I kind of started with an intention of, you know, look, if if you if there’s something for you want me to know, I’m here. And so then, you know, it’s kind of a little prayer and then I went into the meditation and I kind of forcefully I allowed it to occur, but I also forcefully directed my mind that whenever A conscious thought had entered my mind to say, Stop, thought that, right? I don’t want to have any conscious thoughts. And so every now and then I’d come around to the thought, am I thinking anything and then that’s a thought, right? So. But after about 20 minutes into this one meditation, I got to the point where there was complete silence in my mind, where there were no thoughts. And I didn’t even have the thought, while there are no thoughts, it was just like, oh, this is silence. And at that point, then I started to feel a buildup of energy, like coming from within me that I had never experienced before. And long story short, it grew exponentially, to alarming rates to where I was panicked at that point. And in a position of not wanting to be there not wanting to be a part of this anymore, wasn’t, this wasn’t what I was expecting type of thing. And went through a process of, you know, a hearing these, this kind of a thought or two words, it was like, let go. And I heard that once, and I blew it off, I was like, Screw that, because I thought I was dying. I was like, I’m not letting go of, you know, my existence, and etc. And then it came through again, let go. And it was a little more convincing. This time, it’s felt like it was booming from the entire universe thing, you know, let go. And then the final time I heard it was like, the whisper of someone I had known since the beginning of time, coming up from behind me and just putting their hand on my shoulder saying, do is me let go. And I had this feeling of trusting that whole process from that point forward, let go felt like I was dying, D materialized the atomized launched into the center of the universe, that type of thing. And then from there, it felt like 1000s of years of experiences occurred in that moment, which I now know was probably half hour to 40 minutes, something like that, for the chemicals that were allowing me to have this experience metabolized. So I’ve done a lot of research on the neuroscience of Enlightenment at this point. And so from there, it was, you know, just 1000s of years of experience and living every each individual entities life, from the birth to their death, throughout all space and time.
Rick Archer: Not only your path lies, but write lots of everything. Everything’s
Sean Webb: everything’s Yeah. And then, you know, from there, there was a lot of things. And I explained this in the second book, mind hacking habitus, Volume Two, where I actually just went through kind of as an intellectual exercise to say, this is the type of experience that a mind can create, when you enter this space, here’s what I laid the whole thing out in great detail. And from there, there was this part that is simply ineffable, beyond words, melding with the creative energy that is the entire universe that underlies the entire universe. And there’s just a lot of things that you just see feel and experience that are, you simply can’t explain. But when you have that experience, then you come out of that, and you start reading all these and Cohen’s and you understand the deepest meaning of all those things immediately, like you could have written them, you know, you start to really read these ancient religious texts, and you’re like, oh, yeah, I’ve been there, I saw that. And you, you get all that stuff. And so that’s, that’s what we had talked about, after the last interview that I had expressed that, you know, that’s what it was. But yeah, and it was it was meditation induced. I know, a lot of folks have experiences with psychedelics and things like that. But you don’t have to employ those tools to be able to get to that space. And understand it’s extremely hard to cease conscious thought, because it’s just one of those things that your mind is designed to do and your your physiology is designed to do is to keep you alive. And to throw things up and ask if this is important. This is important, you know, do you need to know what you’re going to have for lunch tomorrow, you know, that type of thing. So it’s really tough to get there. But once you get there, I think the physiology is there. And the mechanisms are there to open up consciousness and to open up awareness and have that type of thing happened for anybody who can find it. So good. Is that the question that you
Rick Archer: wanted to first half of it? And then also, then you said your life changed rather radically? I mean, that happened one day, and then you went to bed that night. You got up the next day, and
Sean Webb: yeah, so I had gone into this, you know, your typical material is chasing right leaning gun owning conservative, just looking for a little bit more peace. Yeah, I mean, I thought I’d had a decent relationship with God, but I was on call more than the agnostic thing. It’s like, I’m not really sure because you’ve never really given any clues. Whether you’re really they’re not. You know, I’ve just kind of been on this faith path that everybody says you don’t just have the faith. And so yeah, I went into that whole thing. in that mindset, and in that existence in that space, and then literally at that moment, it was an afternoon and evening and I went to bed soon thereafter. But the next morning, I felt like stripping my body bare and going, living on some beach, growing my food, hugging trees and never owning another firearm as long as I live. Yeah. And so I sold all the guns and I started voting Democrat. And you know, at that point, I was literally transitioned overnight into a tree hugging hippie.
Rick Archer: I think it put something in the water supply, we could actually throw a few elections. Yeah, I think they thought of that back in the 60s.
Sean Webb: Yeah, so it was a it was an indelible transition that last, which I learned later was, you know, it’s difficult and rare, you know, that the thing is, it’s very
Rick Archer: rare to say it, you know, because, yeah, you know, I mean, sometimes this stuff will happen to people after a decade, or two or three of meditation. Yeah. And there have been people who’ve, like, woke it up. Like Karen Tracy was like, tying her shoes one morning, and all of a sudden, boom, there was this big awakening.
Sean Webb: But engineering was with her. And with a lot of people,
Rick Archer: there’s a lot of difficult processing time that has to take place. Well, their whole physiology and life. And just to flip that happened, yeah. But in your case, it sounds like you went to work the next day, and all sudden, everything’s a whole lot easier and smoother and more successful and everything. Yeah,
Sean Webb: well, the reduction of stress about the whole work thing and about not being attached to the goals anymore. But being open to have them be achieved, really made me more effective in my job. Ironically,
Rick Archer: I kind of covered that yesterday when we did the recording. Good. So I just wanted you to flesh that out a little bit, because it’s kind of interesting, we didn’t quite cover, nothing we didn’t quite cover is, you know, you, you have these books and you advocate some approaches people can take to change the way they their orientation to life. Yes, with great benefit. And over lunch yesterday, you told me an example of somebody who, you know, was really in a bad way. Yeah. And who, as a result of what you had to offer changed her life dramatically. So just so we have a story. Yeah. A concrete example of something which I don’t think we got the first interview. Let’s hear that story.
Sean Webb: Okay, awesome. Yeah. So what Rick’s talking about, we’ll talk about the other portion of the interview, but it was basically put together in a way of understanding the human mind. And understanding the process of how the mind creates the pain and suffering and including the individual emotions in every instance, that you have emotions. And when you are able to understand that process, that kind of throat does two things. One, it throws you into a meta awareness space of being able to look at your mind, which then kind of expands yourself out a little bit by default and subconsciously, your mind that has to say, well, I thought I was just this stuff, there’s the self stuff, just as ego, but now I gotta be this ego, and the awareness is looking at it. And then the longer you practice that gets wider or wider and wider and larger and larger, and your problems kind of shrink in relation. And then the other thing that happens is when you understand the emotional process in your mind is creating your pain and suffering in the heat of the moment. And you look at those things, there’s this thing called the name attainment effect, where you put a cognitive understanding to an emotion and it shuts the limbic system that’s creating it off. Because it’s a process that the nervous system that says, I want to make sure that you got this message, right. And so at the point that the medial prefrontal cortex and the right ventral lateral prefrontal cortex send a message back saying, okay, message received, we understand why this is happening. limbic system says, Okay, we’re cool, and then just shuts it off, permanently. It’s not like you’re repressing it than to have to deal with it later. It is like message received, and we’re good. I’m not going to send you that message anymore. And so one of the cool stories that that happened early on in this development of this, you know, let’s systemize this and teach it to people so they can actually use it was this lady who described yourself personally as a mega pitch? Everything in the world was was ruining this lady’s day. And she called me in desperation, saying I saw a couple of videos that you did help me through this. And so we sat one day for about five hours. It was a brutal session. She was a drinker. No, this is this is the first one. Yeah, definitely. This is a quicker one, because a lot of people don’t know this lady. She’s now about two weeks later, she called me and said, I had I get my mind stopped. I saw everything happened and nothing’s been the same since she’s now called the pleasant and hugger, because she goes out every Saturday morning for two hours to give free hugs to anyone who wants them in the city of Pleasanton, California, and she’s been doing it for three or four years, rain or shine, because her life has been such a transformation of being able to just see her mind see the bullshit stuff. And then it’s a permanent transformation, where she’s able to see any in sense of negativity that arises she looks at it and it gets downregulated immediately because she can understand why it’s there. And the second one was a lady who was a part of a group of addiction management folks and she was addictiveness. The Her story is amazing. She called me and said, I want to build a program for addiction. Here’s why. She was an alcoholic, so out of control that she drank so much, she wound up in the traumatic brain injury ward of a neuroscience hospital. And her neurologist quit, because he said, She’s hopeless. She’s beyond help, yada yada. They started sending med students into her room. As examples of this is the worst case scenario for alcoholism that will destroy your brain. This is your lady that’s, you know, you can go ask questions over and talk to her. She doesn’t have full faculties. She had to learn how to tie her shoes again. It was amazing. But she was so gripped by addiction that she was able to work herself out of that space to recover enough that they discharged her. Her husband is taking her home, unpacking the bags from the car from the hospital, she’s inside pouring yourself a glass of wine. That’s how much addiction had gripped her. She read the red book on how her mind worked and understand how our emotions work, cured the pain that she was trying to numb in the first place, cured her of the addiction. She shared the red book with a whole bunch of other folks cured their addictions. They’re all like super empowered women, because they were in this high dollar rehab center, and we’re all failing together. But they became friends. And now we you know, we’re whole gaggle together. So they cured their addictions. And now they want to turn this into a program, which is just amazing. I mean, it’s just like, and she even recently said, you know, I sat down with a glass of wine, and intentionally reintroduced that to my awareness. And I didn’t like it. I didn’t like the effect, it was worse than my minute to minute existence after understanding how my mind worked. And she said, so I’m cured of the addiction of alcohol. I don’t want it anymore. That’s neat. Yeah, it’s really cool. So that was just an example from, you know, one of the people that were transformed from reading on me, it’s really a transition of them. All they it’s all them learning how their mind works, learning how their emotions work, and then what it does with the magic buttons of cheap neuroscience tricks that change them. Right.
Rick Archer: Great. Yeah. So thank you. There it is. Yeah. All right. So now we’re just going to segue right into the interview we taped yesterday. And there could be a little redundancy, perhaps maybe we’ll say a few things in the second interview that Shawn just said now, but shouldn’t be too much of that. And I hope you enjoy it. Thanks for staying with thanks for tuning in. And stay tuned. Here we go. There’s the rest of it. I first met Sean about five years ago or something down in North Carolina, when I was doing a retreat with Francis Bennett and Shawn came down. And we got to know each other a little bit, got to know him a little bit more last year at the science and non duality conference in San Jose, California. And that’s where we are now we’re back in San Jose, California, for the conference. And we’re recording this in a private home nearby. Shawn has written a couple of books called mind, mind hacking happiness, by one by him too. And, unfortunately, due to the constraints of time, and due to the fact that each of these books is about 500 pages. I haven’t written in their entirety. But what I did read I found very interesting. And so I’d like to spend the next two hours or so talking to Sean and having him just tell us whatever he wants to tell us based upon what he has learned what he has experienced what he’s written. And we’ll try to go as we’ll try to cover a broad range. You know, back in the day, when I was teaching, TM, which I did for about 25 years, when I gave an introductory lecture, I would try to swing between as deep and profound as I could go to as concrete and as practical as I could go. And I would swing back and forth in the course of the lecture. And if he swung like that, you’re bound to catch everyone somewhere in the middle, or perhaps at the extremes. So maybe we’ll do that today. Because I believe Shawn has discovered some on understandings and approaches which he feels can enable people to be more happy. But there’s a deep philosophical underpinning to the whole thing. And all of this, I think, arose out of Shawn’s own in inner experience, practical experience. Otherwise, you would probably be selling cars someplace and you wouldn’t be doing this right. So, let’s start with that. Let’s just say And in a way it establishes your credentials, like, how do you? How are you qualified to even talk about all this stuff? Sure. So you know, what got you started on?
Sean Webb: Well, you know, excuse me, you know, I was, I started out in life, just like everybody else, you know, trying to figure out what happiness was, and you know, what could lead to my personal happiness. And I went to school to try to figure out a vocation and what to do on that. And I got into technology and started having some success in advanced supercomputing and things like that, and started to accumulate wealth and success at an early age. And then I got all these things accumulated that, you know, the American Dream says, we’re supposed to have to attain happiness. And I didn’t have that happiness that was promised. And so then I started a deeper introspection into okay, what is happiness? For me? What is my happiness, and I wanted to start to discover the things within that I missed. And I think that’s kind of the path that a lot of us take a lot of times is we look for happiness all over the place. And then we figure out, well, maybe it’s me. And from there, I started to read a lot about world religions. I’ve been brought up in a Christian home and understood that background and that cultural input, and wanted to see okay, what does the world think about God? What does the world think about spirituality? And I started to read a number of books about world religions, things like that. And through that process, found a book by dt Suzuki on Zen. And I thought, Okay, well, I’ve heard just a very little bit about this meditation thing. And dTT is he has put out a pretty good explanation of what it’s supposed to be and what it’s supposed to do for you. And so I started trying it. And in pretty short order, I ran into what the Zen folks call Satori, which is that big boom, you know, awakening within the mind that kind of zaps you from your five senses, you know, being shut down, and you’re launched into the center of the universe, and you have this instant understanding of seemingly everything. And
Rick Archer: what the winning lottery numbers get. Right, exactly.
Sean Webb: Right, except how to turn that into billions of dollars. Yeah, and so you know, then I thought, you know, I didn’t, I had no idea what I’d run into, because, you know, there are no words ever written in any book anywhere, or any seminar or any speaking, engagement that will tell you, you know, in detail, the kinds of things that could happen within your mind, and what all this stuff was, so I wandered around, kind of in bliss, for years, not knowing what it was that I’d kind of run into. But I saw this
Rick Archer: initial awakening you had when Zen practice kicked you into a state that was not only interesting as when it first happened, but that was abiding. And so when you walked around in bliss for years, yeah. Yeah. And before you continue, let me just interject, I forgot to wear my watch. So if somebody could just note the time, and just let me know, when it’s been about two hours, not that we have to keep it to two hours, but just so I have an idea.
Sean Webb: All right. And so at that point, I started reading a lot about awakening experiences and trying to figure out, you know, what it was that I’d run into, and how, you know, I had figured out the path into this place, and how I could maybe share that with others. Because, you know, it was such an overnight transition for me, of, you know, pain and suffering, and struggle and strife, even though I had the material things that were supposed to bring happiness, and then all of a sudden, the next day, I didn’t need any of this stuff and had absolute quietude within my mind and a kind of a, an inner peace that just overflowed and I wanted to go out and hug trees. You know, it was, it was pretty ridiculous. The transition from Yeah,
Rick Archer: so it’s interesting. You presumably, still had a job and maybe a family and other worldly responsibilities. But you were able to actually continue on with those things, and yet maintain this state of bliss or state of happiness. It wasn’t tenuous, it wasn’t easily shattered by the first or second or daily challenge that you met. Right? That’s, that’s kind of unusual, because with most people, it grows very incrementally, like a little tender sprout, which is easily stomped upon, and then it really needs to sort of get a lot stronger before it can withstand a hurricane. Right?
Sean Webb: Yeah, to me, it was it was just self evident. I mean, the next day He was, oh, I can still do this stuff. But I don’t have to stress over it at all, because it doesn’t really matter in the grand scheme of things anymore. And so all of life became that transition literally overnight in that before, you know, the day before and the day after were the same actions. But the inner peace that existed on the day after was completely different than the day before the day before it was wrapped up in I mean, during the time that this happened, was about when the economy was having a tough time. And, you know, a lot of businesses were in a flux. And the stress level at my work was so high, that my heart was literally skipping every fourth beat. I mean, it was like 123, nothing, 123, nothing, flatlining. Yeah. And so, the, you know, the time before versus the time after the time after was, well, you know, I still have these professional goals to attain, and I still have these, these numbers to achieve for the company and cetera. But my attachment to those things was nail, it was, well, you know, I’m gonna do the things that I need to do to allow those things to occur, but I don’t need them to happen. And if they don’t happen, it’s not a big deal. No one’s going to die. Because you know, I don’t make these numbers
Rick Archer: of lessons here. One is, did you have ever have any intimations of like some kind of past life spiritual practice that suddenly fructify it again, in this life was anything like, because there are scriptures that talk about that, especially with people who, all of a sudden wake up one morning and have a spiritual awakening without much practice?
Sean Webb: Yeah, well, that’s what I was told is that a few folks read those same references and said, Oh, yeah, if it happened for you quickly, you’d been searching for lifetimes. And this was just the end all be all for this existence. And I think, you know, scientifically speaking, you know, I tried to stay one foot in the boat of science and one foot in the boat of woowoo. You know, it can be Yeah, that, you know, because of how consciousness might work, there may be some connection, some string of past life that has transcended into this body, or at least, you know, kind of tuned into the same channel that I’m pulling from now. And that there may be some continuity there. And I don’t know.
Rick Archer: So the second question is, did you find after this shift, that not only did you not sort of get so stressed out by work, or even all stressed out and just took it in stride? But did in fact, you find that you became more effective? Because you weren’t getting stressed out? Because you had greater equanimity?
Sean Webb: Yeah. And that’s one of the things that I wrote about in the in the first book on just the practicality of how the human mind works, you know, wanted to write one book, and it turned out to be 1500 pages or something. And that was like, the editor was like, No way. So we slice it down the middle and made two books. But basically, the first book was all about that it was about how reducing stress levels and how reducing your anxiety and stuff like that can allow you to operate at a higher efficiency, and operate in a in a kind of an elevated, humanistic efficiency level that you had no idea you could even operate at previously. And then exactly happened to me in the early days, it was like, when you stop caring so much about the result of what it is you’re working for, it becomes easier to attain the things that you have in mind when you set out your intention.
Rick Archer: Yeah, there’s some very relevant verses from the Gita about this one is yoga karma. sukoshi, which means yoga is skill and action. Yeah, so yoga, or this union with Divine Consciousness is not just to have a groovy experience. It actually has practical application or implications. And you know, that verse was spoken to a guy who was about to fight a battle. Yeah. Yeah. And and then there’s all kinds of all kinds of verses about equanimity and how you have control over action alone, never over it’s fruits and you know, live not for the fruits of action, nor attach yourself to inaction. In other words, you just kind of are in the moment, you know, doing what needs to be done and not not, you know, sweating the, the possible outcome, but don’t get the impression when you say you didn’t really care that you had become lackadaisical or indifferent. Right? It’s just that you weren’t attached. Right? Yeah.
Sean Webb: Yeah, I wasn’t attached to the outcome. You know, I was still attached to doing the things that I needed to do. You know, I’d made an agreement with the company that I’d worked for previously, that you know, I was going to do these things that they asked me to do and they were going to employ me they were going to pay me and I was gonna be able to pay the mortgage and things like that. And I didn’t like totally release that or, or void that contract. It was a well Now at least I don’t have to stress about it. Right now. I get my heartbeat back. cuz, you know, I get my blood pressure comes down 20 points, right? It was all about the ability to let go of all the things that I’ve been holding on to mentally, to be able to be more effective and actually succeed in my position. Post. And pretty.
Rick Archer: That’s great. So, so I guess you kind of marinated in this for a while. Yeah. And then probably, you began to think, well, you know, how can I share this with others? Right? That’s probably how these books resulted in this whole thing that you’ve evolved, right?
Sean Webb: Yeah. And that’s exactly what happened. I mean, it was a, you know, wanted to find out if this is going to be a flash in the pan type of thing. I mean, you know, a lot of people go to these seminars and things in, you sit with Tony Robbins for, you know, three or four days, and all of a sudden, your life is awesome for a month, and then it goes back to normal and whatnot. And so I wanted to make sure that it was an indelible experience that the changes I had were permanent. And then after that, it was like, everybody’s got to know about this, and started to figure out, you know, how to explain, you know, the path into figuring out your pain and suffering and being able to turn it off, really, because it’s the point that you can do that. And you can start to spread it to the world, and you’re starting to change the world incrementally. And, you know, I use the word happiness, it’s not really, I mean, he used the word happiness, because it’s a popular term. But happiness, I think, is fleeting, from a scientific perspective, you know, we can look at the brain. hedonic happiness equals out the nervous system equals out, and happiness after a while, by default goes away as a lot of our nervous system responses do. I think it’s more of a permanent joy, that I would love to spread?
Rick Archer: Happiness is ephemeral, because most of it for most people is derived from outer circumstances, which by definition changed. Yes. And what you’re saying is your happiness was independent of circumstances. Theoretically, you could have been thrown in jail. Yeah. And you would have sat there happy.
Sean Webb: Yeah, exactly. There’s a difference between the the hedonic happiness and eudaimonic joy, right, that the well being that is forever springing from within.
Rick Archer: So you, mon equids dirt would be related to the word hedonism, which usually means, you know, deriving pleasure from sense objects, and you demonic humans good. And so do the etymology of that
Sean Webb: went, well. I forgot the entomology a long time ago, after I did the middle of the research, but eudaimonia, back in the days of the great philosophers, who Donia was identified as the, the internal and or the external source, happiness of external conditions and life conditions. And then Eudaimonia was the the joy, the inner spring of well being that exists just when, you know, external conditions may or may not be pleasing, but you can enjoy the existence without having to be swayed by thoughts, or feelings.
Rick Archer: Yeah. My friend, Marcy Shime. Off wrote a book recently called Happy for No Reason. Right? And I think the same idea here. And so why should it be? And we can begin to, you know, quote, various religious sources. But why should it be that there’s a wellspring of happiness within us? And to most people, that might be a foreign concept. It probably is the most people in the world, they assume that if you’re going to be happy, it has something to do with winning a lottery or some lesser attainment in the outer world. Yeah. Well,
Sean Webb: I think it comes down to, I mean, there’s a little bit of a scientific answer for that, in that, you know, a lot of our cellular structure within us that makes us human, is governed by this thing called homeostasis. And homeostasis is simply the kind of the rule that says, hey, if everything’s cool, then everything’s cool, you know, and if all the conditions are set, and I can exist, happily, without having to do anything, and if something’s not cool, that’s when we need to reset and get back to a homeostatic state, in that we need to take an action, make a change, and reset things to where they’re good. And every one of our living cells lives from that rule, in that, you know, if everything’s good in the environment of the cell, and the cell is just happy and operating, and if it’s not, then it will make a change and take an action and, and try to make it so. And I think at a macro level, joy or Eudaimonia comes from when everything else is good. We can exist in that homeostasis of simply being and enjoying the existence in that Moment. And that includes when your mind or when you see your mind as not who and what you are, but that you have a mind and that it’s bullshit is optional, right? That it’s pain and suffering that it’s creating for you is something that you can take into consideration, but that you don’t have to actually be and become a part of. And when your mind is creating, you know, because the mind never really fully goes away, and your negative emotions always want to arise in certain instances, it’s whether or not you allow those things, any weight in your existence, is what it comes down to. And so when you’re talking about eudaimonia, when you’re talking about being in that homeostatic state, that is taking into consideration, the things in your mind can be optional.
Rick Archer: So he kind of made it sound there that, you know, cellular homeostasis was kind of a precondition for well being, and correct me if I’m wrong. But obviously, there have been many examples of people whose cells are many of them were going haywire. And yet, they didn’t lose their inner happiness, like Ramana sure dying of cancer, and all his disciples were like, Whoa, you must be going through something so terrible. And he was actually on the inside. Doing just fine.
Sean Webb: Yeah, yeah, I think that makes sense. Because, you know, at the point that you understand your existence is something more than your body and more than your mind, then the turbulence within both don’t really have to affect you. Right, when you’re sitting there dying of cancer, and it’s eating you from the inside out your body is, you know, only a portion of your existence at that point. It’s like, you know, getting the bad news that you’re gonna lose your fourth house, you know, it’s like, okay, well, I guess the flood came, you got three more houses and not a big deal. We want vacation in the Grand Tetons or wherever it is. It’s one of those things where if your sense of self is larger than what you thought it was previously, you don’t necessarily have to have a body to be happy, or that it were, you know, to have it be great health to be in perfect. eudaimonia. Good.
Rick Archer: It’s interesting, you say that, because the guy who runs a little ride service in my town was, who was driving me to the airport yesterday, was, you know, he’s a longtime meditator. And he’s doing Vedic studies. And all he said, it says in the Vedas, that, you know, you have to be in perfect health to have Brahman consciousness. And I can think of so including this guy’s teacher, Marcia, as Yogi who’s helped deteriorated as he got older as everyone’s does. And, you know, I don’t think it should be. So maybe, maybe there’s some correlation there and significance to that, but I don’t know if it’s hard and fast. Well, maybe comment on that. And then I have another question.
Sean Webb: Well, I agree with you. I mean, I don’t think that I mean, certainly there are an argument can be made, that the body’s health can be reflected. If everything else is in equilibrium than that it can positively and even science proves this, that the more healthy your mind and spirit are, the more healthy your body is going to be. And in fact, they’ve done studies that a lot of ailments can be cured with contemplative practices, and meditation and TM, and meta awareness practices to where, you know, heart rate and blood pressure. And, you know, even things like eczema, you know, physical ailments can be cured through meditative practices. And so there’s something to be said that, you know, if you have a great symbiosis between mind and body, that your health is going to reflect that, but at the same time, you know, the Buddha died, right, Jesus died, you know, these, these bodies are temporary, and at some point, they’re going to quit. And I think by good design, you know, so that we can make room for whatever’s next. They’re supposed to quit, you know, the, the ability to overcome the natural progression of viruses getting worse over time. I mean, the body needs to renew over time, whether or not you know, our individual consciousness is going to continue with that, you know, I’m going to be the last show on web that I know of, but there might be a portion of me that goes on in is is a continuing stream within another entity down the road, right. But the body’s got to quit at some point. So, you know, even the most enlightened folks are gonna get sick and die.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Okay. And so that’s the basic point there was that, although there may be a quarrel, obviously, if you’re in good health, and there’s an interesting, speaking of the Vedas, again, there’s an interesting place in one of the apana shots where it talks about levels of happiness and they say, you know, take a healthy young man who’s in his prime, and then multiply that by 100. And then you get the level of happiness of a such and such. And, and, and then take that and multiply it 100 times and, and such and such and it goes on like many powers of 10. And then it finally says, you know, and, and this level of happiness is that of a knower of Brahman. And you said knowledge a bit ago about knowing that you are not your body, and everyone who’s listening to this right now could say, okay, they just said, I know, I’m not my body. But that’s not necessarily going to be adequate, because that’s just a thought, right? And so what, what kind of knowledge are we really talking about here that can actually be unshakable and withstand the test of the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune? Well, I
Sean Webb: wrote about this in the second book, mine hacking happiness, volume to the learning process of the human being in general is that of experience. And like you can be told, two plus two equals four, right. And that’s a concept the two is a concept for the concept, the idea of adding two things together as a concept. But you don’t actually get that understanding until the point that you see the you experience, two apples sitting on the table, two apples sitting on the table, and you learn how to count and then somebody shoves those together and says, that’s four here. 123. Now, that’s an experience that you have that brings the concept to life within your mind, and putting your hand on the stove, right? Some some ineffable things that can’t be explained, while sitting in hot tub. Right? If I were to try to explain to you having no experience yourself, who’ve ever sitting in a hot tub, the concept of warmth, the concept of wet the concept of bubbles, and how they feel on your skin as they arise. I can spend an infinitude of lifetimes trying to explain with analogies and words and ideas and things like that. And so it’s easy to grasp, you know, yes, I’m not my body is an idea, right. And you can almost even feel it a little bit if you try to convince yourself strong enough, that I am not my body, right? But at the point that you experience that that’s the true moment of nerve learning and knowledge of that fact, you have immediately like when we plop you into a hot tub, there will be nothing else that will need to be said to you ever regarding the experience of sitting in a hot tub, you will have experienced that you’ll have understand, understood it, you’ll have realized it. And it will be indelible to you, you’ll remember the feeling of those of that moment. And so I think the same is true of you know, the things that are ineffable and infinite of, you know, becoming one with a universal being beyond your body of being that consciousness that has no bound and has no other right, there’s an experience, I think that’s required for that. Yeah,
Rick Archer: there might be a little bit of difference, like, hot tub is a good example or even something like eating a mango. Many people haven’t eaten mangoes, right? But and you could you sit and talk for hours with someone who has and try to get them to convey to you what that taste is like, but just one bite, and then you know, much more than you know, they could ever tell you, right?
You know what it is for you? Yeah,
Rick Archer: but what we’re talking about here, any kind of thing like that hot tub, a mango anything like that is a transitory experience. Yes. And what we’re talking about what we’re alluding to here is an abiding thing. Yes, it’s not fed to us through the senses, right? And you use the word knowledge. And knowledge we can forget, like, I forgotten most of the math I learned in high school, I probably did pretty poorly on my SATs, if ever take them again. As we’re talking about something, which presumably can’t abide, and once known cannot be unknown, right or lost, right? So what is it about this knowledge you’re alluding to, which is different than all the other kinds of ordinary things we know?
Sean Webb: Well, in and again, we’re faced with the limitation of being human right, because we’re talking about what we’re actually talking about is not the truth of existence, not the truth of consciousness is not the truth of who and what we are, it is our human experience of discovering that. And the limitation of the human mind that we have the brain that we have the the ability for it to process, that experience, etc. So I think there’s a parallel in the, in the hot tub experience in the mango experience and in the awakening experience, or the or the abiding experience, in that it’s limited to our ability to process and understand through our human body, the thing that is beyond our human body, so to speak, if that kind of makes sense. And, and I think
Rick Archer: I think what you’re saying there just to make sure we’re clear is that whereas mangos and hot tubs may not be beyond our human body, when it comes to the spiritual realm we’re talking about a dimension that is sort of universal, unbounded, unlimited, pervading, whereas our body is limited within very small boundaries of space and time. Sure, and, and you’re talking about interfacing with that universal thing in such a way that it becomes part and parcel of one’s living experience. Right?
Sean Webb: Yeah, whenever you nailed it,
Rick Archer: okay. And so that we’re still going to get around to have, because I mean, all the world’s great spiritual traditions have grappled with that question, right? How can we, you know, some great, some see, or Jesus or Buddha or whoever has this great experiences than things like you did? How am I going to share this, right? And so they, they start talking, and they maybe come up with techniques or methodologies, and they do whatever they can to impart it to others to enable them to experience it for themselves. Yeah. And there’s always sort of, there was the phrase, knowledge crumbles on the hard rocks of ignorance. That happens even as one is speaking to a group, you know, Jesus talked about not cast the pearls before swine words. Some people just aren’t gonna get this, right. And it had the parable of throwing seeds on various kinds of ground, and some of it is fertile, but shallow, and some of it is rocky and thorny, and this and that, and, and not all the seeds are going to germinate. Right. And then there’s also the time issue where something like that comes out, says a bunch of stuff. And then generations go by, and it gets more and more and more distorted. Yeah,
Sean Webb: like a game of telephone, telephone. So
Rick Archer: there’s very little similarity, you know, a couple 1000 years later between what’s being talked about and what he actually said or did, right.
Sean Webb: We take for instance, you know, Christianity, you know, one of the things that I had never known about Christianity growing up within Christianity was that it was based on the search for Enlightenment. And that, you know, the, the closest thing that we have to the two original Christianity today is Eastern Orthodox Christianity in the east, which is all about Theosis, becoming one or becoming like God, through catharsis, prep preparation of the body, and attaining Theo Korea, which is the beatific visions are a Vizio via typica. Finding those great vision, inner visions, and that Christ’s teachings were all about a, let’s find Enlightenment together. And you’re you need to enter the kingdom of heaven, which is all around you, you just don’t see it. Right, that type of thing. And so the message through the telephone line, you know, the game of telephone being relayed one person to another is now about, well, you have to believe that Jesus died for your sins. And that’s all it’s about.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And then, you know, Christians who actually got enlightened, usually got pretty hard time, took centuries of Avila or St. John’s across, they got locked in a little closet for 14 years. Yeah,
Sean Webb: they don’t know what to do with them. They make them Franciscan nuns now and priests and monks and send them off on top of some mountain somewhere, to be with God, and let us do the religion thing.
Rick Archer: We’re a little bit of a tangent here. But the syndrome seems to be that. Well, there’s this there’s a saying that the joke that God and the devil are walking down the road, and God picks something up and puts in it put it puts it in his pocket. And the devil said, Hey, what’s that? And God said, Oh, it’s truth. The devil said, Hey, give it to me. I’ll organize it for you. Administrative mind certainly get involved in these things. And they just have a different orientation than the mystics who originally started them.
Sean Webb: Yeah. Well, I think, you know, I think Enlightenment in general is built into all of us, right? And, you know, that’s what I love being out at this science and non duality conferences, because we’re actually starting to get some of these scientific minds that understand science, and come at it from a let’s prove it point of view. And these woowoo, folks, and we’re getting him in one room and saying, Okay, let’s figure out this consciousness thing. Let’s figure out this expanded existence that we can find within us that seems to be at least somewhat uniform across all humanity. When we discover this thing, it has, you know, seven basic, fundamental characteristics that we can all agree on and that type of thing. And then how does that what’s the physical process that that takes place? What actually happens within our body? Because we know and a lot of people don’t like, when you start talking about spirituality with science, because they’re like, Oh, my God, science is so blind and yada, yada yada. But the fact is that, you know, when you have an eternal experience, in your humanity, you’re experiencing, you’re experiencing that through your human body and through your mind, and if you can recall that experience, it’s stored in your hippocampus, right? And so the brain is operating, the brain is active, what’s going on within the human body at the time of these consciousness expansion experiences that are so profound and do change our lives so dramatically. Because if we can figure out, you know, not just a good practical approach of how to get everybody there, you know, let’s figure out the magic sequence of events that gets everybody in line. But if you can also come at it, from a scientific point of view, to say, this is how and why and these are the mechanisms that are occurring within the human body than the melding of those two things is going to enlighten a ton of folks. And I think it’s important that we, that we, you know, explore that and do that. And I think, you know, leading people to that experience going back to our mango and our hot tub, however, we do it leading people to the experience of that awakening, I think, is what it’s all about. And I think that’s of course, what all religions are designed to do is lead people to that experience not fill their head with a bunch of ideas to say, I believe X y&z You know, and if you aren’t X y&z Then I don’t want to talk to you, right? Yeah, exactly. Exactly.
Rick Archer: So there’s a hot tub of the sand camps which advice the mangoes will live streaming. Here’s what it’s like. You know, actually, I just made very exciting because the scientific method scientific paradigm, is the predominant influence in our world. Yes, even though there are all kinds of religions and other trends and beliefs, but it’s really science, it’s having the most major impact on the world for good and for bad, right? You know, it’s destroying the environment. At the same time, it’s coming up with, you know, marvelous technologies of all kinds. And, and, yeah, as I understand it, the scientific paradigm is largely atheistic or agnostic, or it regards the world as it doesn’t regard the world as permeated by intelligence or, you know, as the sort of divine living thing. It sees it as mechanistic, yes, material. And so I’m in contradiction to the farther reaches of science, such as quantum mechanics, which we can get into Sure. But I think that if the marriage of science and spirituality is extremely important, and they need each other, yes, because science needs spirituality, because spirituality opens a whole dimension of exploration, which the current scientific tools don’t include, right. And spirituality needs science, because without a systematic empirical approach, spirituality can go off on all kinds of impractical tangents and really not be helpful for people, right, and actually result in all kinds of cruel and unusual beliefs and practices and wars and all that stuff. So I think that we’re kind of in an age where those two are coming together, and and ever, eventually will very fully, I don’t know how long it’ll take. But I think a time will come when it seems sort of antiquated to look back and think that they were regarded as two completely separate, and possibly even opposing things. They’re both sort of tools in a larger toolkit. And science will become spiritual spirituality will become scientific and together as one as various facets of the human means of gaining knowledge, they will bring us much farther than we’ve come so far. Yeah,
Sean Webb: we’d certainly hope that that would be the case. I think the one thing that on the science side that’s keeping the scientists at least open to discussion is the fact that, you know, quantum mechanics is the single most successful theory in the history of science, and not one of its predictions has ever been proven wrong, but there’s some really crazy things about quantum mechanics, to where, you know, the masters or quantum mechanics said, you know, if, if you don’t say this is crazy, and you know, it is impossible, and you’re not vexed by it, then you don’t understand it. Because, and I think that their, their, you know, their need to understand or they want to understand the yearning to understand how quantum mechanics works. Is, is going to help us get there to that middle ground. And one of the things that they’re trying to figure out is this component called consciousness, and what is consciousness because not one of the 17 or so, interpretations of quantum mechanics leaves consciousness on the floor. And in fact, one of the great minds in quantum origin story Vigna said, you can’t you can’t leave it on the floor. It always has to be a part of the explanation. You’re not or you’re it doesn’t work. And so then, you know, consciousness is something of course that, you know, the, the spiritual folks are like, yeah, it’s all about consciousness and, and ironically science is, is getting to that point of leading us down that path of saying, Well you know what consciousness may be all what it’s about I mean this the whole universe may be made of conscious energy and holy cow I can’t even believe it I’m saying that as a scientist, you know, that’s, that’s the kind of the position that they’re in. I think, as we move forward, and we find ways to talk together, we find common ground of ways to have discussions and, and put definitions to things that we can understand and start to do experiments and things like that. I think we’re just gonna learn more and more, and humanity hopefully will will benefit if we don’t kill ourselves first.
Rick Archer: Yeah, they get that take us off on a different tangent. But the so let’s let’s dwell on this thing, a bit more quantum mechanics, you’re not a physicist, but I think you have a pretty good grasp of the science as a layman. Sure. And I think people are interested in that. And I think I think a lot of times, scientists have, you know, physicists have pulled their hair out, because New Agey types appropriate quantum mechanics. Yeah, in a very simplistic understanding of it. Yeah. And, you know, try to try to say that, you know, if you like a pearl necklace that you see in the window, somehow quantum mechanics is going to be involved in getting it. Right.
Sean Webb: Yeah, there are a lot of leaps that are made by a lot of people, some of which are people that we love, and would hug if we saw them this afternoon. Yeah, there are a lot of you know, there’s a lot of liberty that’s taken by some folks that don’t really understand the science. And there’s, you know, there is a lot of just, you know, nuts and bolts shut up and calculate science to quantum mechanics. But at the same time, there’s that skeletons in the closet, I think one of the better books that I read was quantum Enigma, where a couple of physicists talked about I mean, these are physicists that do lectures at major universities talked about the skeletons in the closet of consciousness, and how it is inextricably tied into all these weird things about quantum mechanics where you can do experiments and measure the results of the experiment, before you decide what type of experiment it’s going to be. Every time the measurement is taken. The results of the experiment matches the type of experiment you’ve decided to take in the future. And so it is written a result backwards in time and it happens 100% of the time that you do it, because of the collapse of the wavefunction. And the observer, and what consciousness is and how consciousness can potentially work backwards and forwards in time. And that time may be an illusion, that’s a concept of human mind, that type of thing. Some amazing, amazing stuff comes about, I think one of the really cool things, I got to speak at the consciousness conferences. April in Tucson, yeah, and got to hang out with you know, David Chalmers and Hameroff and Penrose and all those really cool guys. They back in the 80s put together a theory that called or QR about consciousness coming from the microtubules in our brain neurons coming
Rick Archer: from or being picked up,
Sean Webb: picked up by better, but basically, they were they were like, you know, and they were laughed at back when they put this this theory out. And they were like, well, you know, the quantum field has these vibrations, and these microtubules just happen to be brought by the right size that they would interact with these vibrations. And everybody poo pooed that idea? Yeah, in the gamma. Yeah. So we, you know, the this lab in Tsukuba, Japan with MIT researcher went to prove it or disprove it and prove that it was accurate that the microtubules in our neurons do interact with vibrations in the quantum field. And one of the really big quizzes are the Enigma is about brain science were these gamma waves, which they thought were just noise, these little oscillations that move faster than the timing circuits in the brain and shouldn’t even exist in the brain. They’re not even exactly sure how they physically exist. They are a puzzle to Newtonian physics. And but they figured out and well now those are the most important brainwaves that we have, right, you know, five, six types of brainwaves. And the gamma waves which were thought to be noise are now the ones that integrate the big picture. They take the most information back and forth, they basically to make sense of everything in our brain and boil it down into the most pertinent information for us. And those happen in the gamma wave spectrum in our brain. Well, it turns out that the oscillations of the microtubules interacting with quantum field are right In the sweet spot of the gamma spectrum, that the quantum field is interacting with our brain in that in that gamma wave spectrum, which, by the way, the gamma spectrum is measured highest in the monks of Tibet who are sitting around meditating all day on our payments suffering, right and are more most commonly connected with our altruism, and our higher virtues or unconditional love things like that people who measure high in those higher virtues have the strongest gamma wave spectrum of all humanity, it’s pretty interesting that the whole universe could be vibrating with love. And science is the one that delivers just they’re
Rick Archer: just out of curiosity. How big are microtubules? Like, how many of them are there in a neuron?
Sean Webb: Well, a ton, I can’t remember the, the Nano measurement
Rick Archer: of bigger than are they the size of molecules are smaller, I wouldn’t know there’s,
Sean Webb: there’s certainly larger than the molecules. Yeah, they’re made of molecules, they’re microtubules of atoms that come together that form organic material, right. And so they
Rick Archer: can be the size of the DNA strand are. So they’re bigger, they’re
Sean Webb: bigger, slightly bigger than that. They’re there, they come together to create the walls of the neurons, right, which are which hold the action potential. And they also are within the neuron, not inside the nucleus, but all of the important stuff that the neuron does with the health of the cell and recreating the things that it needs to have for cell reproduction and things like that. And cell action, all of those things are microtubules the synapses in our brain are microtubules. So there would be no communication between cells in our brain without these microtubules. And so
Rick Archer: this settled science, or is it Yeah,
Sean Webb: no, that’s yeah, no, that’s, that’s look under a microscope. And you can see
Rick Archer: things he said about gamma waves is that pretty much agreed upon? Yeah,
Sean Webb: well, as of Tsukuba, Japan, it is. It was just theory up into the point that the MIT researcher said, well, let’s figure out if these things actually interact with quantum vibrations.
Rick Archer: And to make this relevant case, we are getting a little abstract here. Sure. As I understand it, what you’ve just described about microtubules, and the quantum field and consciousness and all, if it’s valid, explains a lot in terms of psi phenomena, and all kinds of things that could that are kind of,
Sean Webb: yeah, and this is where the and this is where the leap of the woowoo folks would annoy the folks of the scientific community, because the scientific community would stop right there and say, Okay, here’s what we have. And it’s even a little bit of a leap to make the connection between, you know, the gamma spectrum and being measured in meditators of Tibet and all this other stuff. What we can say, is this, what we have seen is this, and then, you know, that’s when the woowoo crowd will say, and, you know, I’m one foot in each boat. That’s where the folks would say, okay, yeah, this can explain if our consciousness is linked backwards and forwards in time that can explain why can access past lives, that can explain why can access ESP and other things that have been scientifically statistically proven for people to be able to do better than, you know, the the stats that they’ve used to legalize aspirin, right? The stats for ESP are better than that of aspirin. And yet people don’t believe it on the scientific side, because they can’t quite prove it. And then their paradigm. Yeah, right. And so these folks will say, Well, that’s exactly how it can happen is because I’m directly linked to the quantum field, and everything is now magically possible. Well, true, it is possible, but it seemed pointed, you know, we’d like to prove that. Yeah,
Rick Archer: I mean, if you think that we’re basically meat, and that consciousness is some kind of product of brain chemistry, and that’s all there is to it, right? And that when the brain dies, there’s no more consciousness, then it’s really impossible to understand this stuff, or to come to grips with that. And to my understand, to my way of seeing, it’s kind of like Ptolemaic astronomy, where they thought the earth was the center of the solar system. And thinking that the planets made no sense at all, the way they rotated, they would take these little loops backwards and do and have to come up with all these complicated explanations of planetary movement, right, as soon as you put the sun in the center of the solar system. Oh, it all makes sense. You know, so I mean, there’s so many things that that just clash with scientific, conventional scientific understanding. You don’t put consciousness as fundamental or primary. Yeah. And you just think that it’s a product of brain chemistry. Right. flip that around. Yeah. All these little pieces of the puzzle fall in place. Yeah. And
Sean Webb: granted, I mean, you know, the one camp says, you know, consciousness within the human existence can be an emergent property. And that’s a big popular theory that, you know, complex systems build upward. And then an emergent theory is kind of a, a characteristic of that system that then downregulates back into that system. So if you want to think about a flock of birds, or a school of fish, right, so you have this flock of birds, the bird individually is the bird. But then a flock of birds gets together and they start to interact. And then something magical occurs of that where the larger entity then down regulates the birds actions based on what the other birds are doing. And there’s a whole mathematical model of the problem that we run into with emergent properties in that, you know, trying to explain consciousness as an emergent property of all these cells working together, and yada, yada, yada, and then down regulating back into the system. The only problem there is when you go back down farther down to the bottom of the stack, where you get to a point where you have individual cells. You break those down into organic molecules, you break those down into atoms, where where does the smartness come from? Where does the action potential come from, for a dumb atom, to come together to create an organic molecule, which then comes together to start to create a single celled creature that then starts to make pro life decisions? Yeah, right. Where does that come from? And so
Rick Archer: why does that even happen? Yeah, exactly. As Brian Swimme says, You take hydrogen and leave it alone for 13 point 7 billion years, you get giraffes and opera. Exactly. Why does
entropy? Keep it as
Sean Webb: hydrated? Right, exactly? Why does the self organizing systems start from the bottom and organize? I mean, because you have had this great conversation with the Northeast, and he was talking about, you know, all these self organizing systems. And you know, you can see self organizing systems of planets organizing into solar systems and solar systems organizing into galaxies and things like that. But at the point, you go down and down and down and down, you see all these self organizing systems there is the Planck length, there is that that section of measurement that beneath it, there is no more? What causes those things to self organize from that. And how can it not be consciousness? Or how can you how can you rule out the fact that it could be consciousness?
Rick Archer: Yeah. And I wonder if if conscious if they were consciousness doesn’t work for you, I wonder if the word intelligence would be more helpful? Sure. And I think both terms are valid. But you know, you spoke about atoms for a minute, of course, atoms are huge compared to the Planck length. But, you know, why should an atom be this perfectly functioning little thing that just keep coming along, and according to, you know, very profound laws of nature that we probably don’t fully understand. There seems to be this orderliness or intelligence, to the functioning. And this would kind of get us into a little bit, the notion of God, which I want to talk about with you. There seems to be this all pervading intelligence, wherever you look at, you know, take a single gram of air and make the atoms in it as large as unpopped popcorn kernels, and you’ve just covered the continental United States, nine miles deep. And each of those little atoms is a perfectly functioning little thing. And that’s just one little gram of air and it just goes on and on and on and on throughout the whole universe with this just unfathomable intelligence and orderliness and creativity and all these laws of nature, all this marvelous display happening throughout all time, right? You know, it’s not that’s not random billiard balls, right, you know, and so what is this intelligence that is staring us in the face I hiding in plain sight that we’re by and large and ignoring,
Sean Webb: right? Yeah. And then we try to ignore because we can’t wrap our heads around it. I mean, I think that’s one of the shortcomings of the scientific community is that they don’t want to have to think that large. Because they like to have things they can define. They like to have things that they can identify, they like to have things that they can experiment with. They like to have things that they can understand. And the
Rick Archer: deeper you get into any field of science, the more you have to specialize, right. Big picture.
Sean Webb: Right? Yeah. Yeah. So that’s why I’m out here at sea. And it’s fun to have those conversations. Yeah.
Rick Archer: So I think about that a lot. And even just walking the dog down the sidewalk looking at blades of grass. What am I actually looking at?
Sean Webb: There’s nothing there. But space. It’s 99.999% space yet I’m getting all this information, and I can actually touch it and move it. Yeah, yeah.
Rick Archer: Obviously, what we’re saying here, I think has immense spiritual implications. Yeah, we’re talking kind of scientific terms, but this is what all the mystics have been getting at. Yeah. And have gotten to experience you know, I say, what is that intelligence? Okay. They got to a level of experience where they knew themselves as being that intelligence
Sean Webb: Yes. Or being that that field of potential right, because when you get down to it when you’re talking about the quantum field, You’re old and quantum mechanics, you’re talking about a field of infinite potential, and intelligence and potentially consciousness that exists down below the the existence of everything else that has been scientifically proven to have an influence on all matter and all existence throughout space and time forward and backwards in time. And we’ve even proven the time travel aspect of quantum mechanics. So when you’re talking about something that is completely fully permeable, throughout all space and time, that exists in every corner of the universe, else, the universe not exist, because quantum mechanics is required for matter to exist, period. And you’re talking about having it be potentially conscious or intelligence will show me a definition of God, that isn’t all bad. Yeah, you know, show me any idea of all knowledgeable, all wise all spatially exist in creator, or creation energy. That isn’t exactly the quantum field. Right. I mean, I think maybe, ironically, the thing that science is racing, to define might be the thing that religion has been revolving around for years, and the experience of, you know, digging deep into your own consciousness and your own Deep Mind to find that experience of that may be, you know, finding that mix of chemicals within the brain that you know, when you cease conscious thought, when you quiet the mind enough that the patterns of thought, and pain and suffering stop and reside enough, that allows for something else to arise some other pattern that allows you to tap into that microtubule linked existence out into the quantum field, and all of a sudden, you have access to that intelligence, you have access to that consciousness, which then becomes a portion of your existence, a portion of your understanding.
Rick Archer: Yeah, you spoke a second ago about consciousness sort of being down there, as it were at the more fundamental levels of creation. And of course, it’s at all levels. But I think you’re talking about the sort of the, the ground state from which everything emerges, and at which the laws of nature ultimately reside in some kind of seed form, maybe, yeah. And there’s this kind of verse, there’s this verse from the Rigveda, someplace that says something like, says ritual X ray param, maybe Oman, Yassmin, VEDA artificial initiative. And what it says is that the hymns of the Veda which are understood to be the laws of nature, reside and transcendental Akasha, that transcendent, transcendent ground state that field? Yeah, and, and that those who know that field, those those laws of nature, they are attuned to them, right? And, and their life sort of flows with the support with their support, right? Whereas those who don’t know it, what can those laws do for them, right. And so the practical implication of what we’re saying here is not only that, the laws of nature, ultimately the our impulses of intelligence, which reside in consciousness or the transcendent field, and from which kind of emerge or function from there to, to bring about the whole play of creation, but that we are that field, right, and that knowing ourselves as such, we become, we already are, but we know ourselves, we begin to know ourselves as a repository, or home of all those laws of nature, and so they’re no longer alien to us, right. And they’re verses in both the Bible and the Gita that if you don’t know that field, then it behaves with enmity like a foe. Jesus said something about, you know, it will destroy you, or whatever, if you don’t know it, whereas if you know it, then it becomes a friend. And because obviously, if you don’t know I’m going a little long here, and I’d like to go on so long, then you were, you’re clashing or violating with those impulses of intelligence, you’re not, you’re using your human freewill, which we can talk about freewill sure, in ways that are at odds with the evolutionary purpose of creation, right? When you’re in your teenage years. And you’re crashing around. But if you mature into the adult stage as a soul, then you align with those laws of nature. And, and you’re sort of aligned with the evolutionary purpose of creation, and therefore, you get the whole support of the intelligence that governs the universe, in the governance of your own life.
Sean Webb: Yeah. And I think getting out of the body, through the body and out of the body is critical to that process. You know, and one of the things that I wrote about in in mine hacking happiness Volume One, as I explained the human mind. I mean, that’s the one. That’s the book that everybody who’s not woowoo loves, because they were like, wow, that’s the science of how my emotions work. And it’s this the brain science of how to turn off my inner pain and suffering without having to do all this woowoo stuff. You know, it’s basically and just another doorway into meta awareness right? These these practices that we’ve had for 1000s of years, with meditation and with the meditative disciplines and things like that dump us into this place called meta awareness where we can see our our mind, right, we can see our mind trying to distract us in our in our meditation, and we’re just supposed to be having equanimity with that, that it’s okay that our mind distracts us. But what that does, from a human operations perspective, our brain is there for our as our organ of survival, and our organ of survival or has a limbic system. And the limbic system says, Okay, I must look around the room and around the environment for potential threats to me else, my may not continue into tomorrow. And so the limbic system says, okay, is this a threat? Is this a threat? Is this a threat? Is this person over here going to be a threat? But then a second question must be asked a threat to squat. And so then from a physiological survival perspective, a self must be created and understanding of your existence must be created within your brain to be that laundry list of things that your brain checks against of being a potential threat, because you could look at our leafcutter ant and say, Is that a threat to me? Well, if you don’t have a sense of self that either says I have leaves or I don’t have leaves, then you’re not going to know whether that thing’s a threat, and you’re not going to know whether or not to expend the energy to defend against that threat. And if you don’t have that sense of self, you’re going to run around defending yourself against everything that you think is a threat to you. Well, when you have that sense of self, that saves your energy and allows you to expend energy that are that are defensive threats that are pertaining to you. When you look at your mind, from that awareness, you start early in life, like in your teenage years, like you were saying, in that space of I am myself, I am just this laundry list of things that my mind says is me, I’m the body because you know, you’re automatically hardwired to Dodger baseball, when it’s flying at you. You’re are hardwired to have that adrenaline flood your system when you see the bear, right, so you can run faster, the snake makes you jump. There’s some hard wiring that occurs. But then after that, you start to learn to attach ideas. And a lot of science has proven this that we attach ideas to our sense of self, we attach other people to our sense of self, which can allow us to have emotional reactions to other people. Ideas of politics and religion, Sam Harris, prove that in some studies that, you know, we we have physiological reactions to attacks on things that we attach to as our ideas of self. Well, at the point that you start looking at your mind, there’s a portion of your mind that says, Okay, it’s my job to keep this list of self things very accurate. Because if we have any misconception about what our self is, we could die as a mistake of that. At the point that we start to look at our mind and we start to do contemplative practices, we become that observer of our mind. But then there’s a portion of our subconscious mind that says, hey, wait a second, I thought I was just this thing, I thought I was just on mine, I thought I was just our emotions, I thought I was just the body. Now I’m this mind and body. And this awareness that’s looking at it. And so then the self gets expanded out a little bit. And the further you do that, and the deeper you take that practice, your sense of self gets larger and larger until the point that you can, you know, have some type of inner transitional experience and expand out infinitely or in large chunks for a lot of folks that do it incrementally. And then your sense of self gets larger and larger. All of a sudden your life problem rocks that gets thrown into your pond. Well now it’s not just a pawn now, it’s a lake, now it’s an ocean. And those ripples don’t even rock the boats of your life anymore. You know, in result, and so getting beyond that initial I am my body, I am my mind thing, I think is crucial. And I think that speaks to what you just said about, you know, graduating from the teenager into the adult getting beyond that first sense of your existence.
Rick Archer: Yeah, and I don’t mean it literally in terms. I mean, there are teenagers who are adults in the in the sense I just made. Yes. And there are adults who are infants and
Sean Webb: yeah, they’re speaking metaphorically. Yeah. Metaphorically. Yeah.
Rick Archer: So would you consider that then? I mean, do you do in your whole thing that you teach people? Sure. Are there incremental steps? And is that kind of step one?
Sean Webb: Yeah. Yes. Step one is being able to identify and realize and there’s really is actually some cool tricks in neuroscience that occur when you are when you like Book One, the Red Book, talks about just how your mind works, and This explains to you all of the vexes and negative emotions and all the stuff that you’ve struggled with your whole life just explains that stuff. It doesn’t say how to fix it. It just says, here’s, here’s how it works. Here’s why it’s doing what it’s doing in your mind. Just that one little magic key of being able to see your mind dumps you into meta awareness dumps you into that space of being the observer of your mind, and understanding why your negative emotions come to be give you
Rick Archer: a taste of it. Yeah, a flavor. Yes. I mean, it’s obviously not the full enchilada. You know, what’s possible with that? No, but it gives you an inkling
Sean Webb: Yes, that’s the little baby step to say, I am not my mind, I have a mind. Right, it gives you that ability to step back and be that observer, and put a little bit of a curtain between you and the mess that’s going on in your mind. And so at that point, then your subconscious has to rewrite your definition of self to say, Well, I’m no longer just a mess. I’m the mess and this existence out here that’s looking at the mess now, because now I can see the mess. And if I can see the mess and understand the mess, that means I’m not completely the mess, I am the thing that transcends the mess. And so the more that you can do that, the more that your body will physiologically help you expand your consciousness outward, to have a better understanding of you know, your whole human package, you aren’t just a mind that you aren’t just the body and its reactions and things like that. And that gives you a greater level of equanimity about, you know, the mess that could be going on in your mind. But it also reduces the volume. And it changes because the brain is plastic, when you start turning down, there’s this magic, the neuroscience talked about. Your limbic system sends the negative emotions to your forebrain. And your prefrontal cortex is supposed to make sense of it. And if it doesn’t make sense of what’s going on in your emotional system, your emotional system keeps firing those messages and saying, stress, stress, stress, stress, or anger, anger, anger, anger. Well, at the point that you can understand the components that came together to create your anger or to create your stress or to create your sadness, your create your fear, there’s a portion of the prefrontal cortex, the right ventral lateral prefrontal cortex and the medial prefrontal cortex that sends a signal back to your limbic system, it says, okay, message received, and it stops sending that stuff forward. And it’s not like you’re repressing it and turning it off for a day and it comes back tomorrow, it is resolved, because your nervous system is this system of communication that says, I’m gonna send you a signal. And there’s a really cool study done that proves this at a macro level to by John Gottman and his love lab, that he can listen to a conversation of you and your spouse for 15 minutes and identify whether you’re gonna get a divorce to 90% accuracy. And if he listens to an hour, he can improve that to 95% accuracy. And it’s based on the one characteristic that in this is a dated study. So if the male or if the female in the relationship feels that she has been heard, because she sees evidence of a behavioral change in her husband, based on her input, the marriage makes it. And if she doesn’t feel that she’s been heard, because she doesn’t see the behavioral change in her husband, the marriage doesn’t make it to 95% accuracy. Well, that’s simply her confirmation that, okay, my message is being received. Well, that’s a function of the nervous system, and the nervous system sends a signal forward, it says, I want to know that I’ve been hurt, because I’m telling you that something’s wrong or something needs to be looked at. And you’re either not looking at it or you’re not, you know, confirming that you’ve got my message. And so at the point, the prefrontal cortex says, I understand why I’m angry, I understand why I’m sad. I’m understanding why I’m fearful, I understand why I’m feeling stressed about this. If it never gets a signal back, it continues to send it. So you’re vexed by this constant anger, this constant anguish, this constant upset. But if the point that you do understand it, that signal does get sent and it gets turned off. And then after a while, because the brain is the most plastic organ that we have. It’s Richie Davidson says it’s the organ in our body most designed to change based on how we use it in our experiences and whatnot, I mean, our memory is being written right as we speak. Then that organ changes, and the patterns change. And as we turn down our negative stuff more and more quickly, over time, it starts to do that more and more automatically. And so you can kind of find yourself in this kind of functional nirvana. If you’re able to understand your negative stuff and turn it off quickly, and understand your sense of self is something larger than what you thought it was previously, back when you were a teenager, metaphorically, then all of a sudden, life’s problems just aren’t life’s problems anymore. And so I’ve kind of written that red book to say, Okay, here’s a practical guide, to say, here’s how you do it based on your physiology and how it works and under what we understand about the science of our bodies. Here’s how you do it from baby steps of not having to go full Enlightenment, but if you want to have the incremental steps to say the practical push the buttons in your brain to turn off your negative bullshit. Let’s do that. And let’s increase your levels of inner peace practically. And here’s how you know a few lessons in the very end of the book to say, here’s some practical ways that you can make your life and life’s around you better based on how your physiology works. But then if you want to take that a step further, and you want to understand who and what you are beyond that mess, where you’re the observer, if you want to see how deep that rabbit hole goes, then read book two, because then that’s when you can find out, you know, the expansion of self and the expansion of consciousness out to infinity and carry on. So
Rick Archer: if somebody reads both these books, yeah, and imbibes, what they are saying and puts it to practice as fully as you would like them to Sure. You know, what are they actually doing on a day to day basis? And maybe what they’re doing three years from now won’t be what they do on day one, but, you know, how does it progress? And what are they doing? Is it something that they just sort of evoke throughout the day as they go through their day is? Oh, yeah, Shawn’s book, he said this, and I should see it this way, instead of that way? Or is it something where they’re going to sit down in the morning and meditate in some way for 20 minutes? Or something? Or? Or what I mean, how does this look in real life? Yeah,
Sean Webb: I think all contemplative practices, such as meditation, and things like that are should be a part of your daily routine. And, you know, anytime that you can take a position of awareness of what your mind is doing, that dumps you into that place of meta awareness, like you’re big meditator, big TM guy,
Rick Archer: Tam, Dinah, I’m still a meditator.
Sean Webb: Okay, so, but you know what it’s like to be in that space that’s just beyond your mind and be able to see your mind in action and trying it trying to distract you. If you go, Gosh, I got to do this interviewer, or what am I going to eat for lunch today? And things like that. It tries to interject things. And you, you’re watching it, you’re seeing that? Well, that’s it.
Rick Archer: But I would add, that this watching business is not it’s not so much like one individual function, stepping aside and watching another individual function, right, which is to my understanding of division of the mind, which is not necessarily a healthy thing, right? It’s more like there’s a silent dimension of our life, which is this ground state or Yes, quantum state or vacuum state or self capitalists or whatever we want to hear. And the more that gets enlivened in the awareness, the more there’s a natural distinction between that and the more superficial aspects of life. That’s a certainly a better way to put it. Yeah, yeah. And so you’re, you know, you’re running through an airport, or you’re doing some sport or something like that, which is very demanding physically. Yeah. And, you know, balls are flying at you in this sport. Pickleball is my sport. And yet, there’s this abiding silence, which is untouched by that. So it’s not like, I’m gonna maintain the silence and watch these balls come. It’s more like you’re you’re doing what you can, yeah, to play the sport. And yet that silence Just
Sean Webb: abides? Yes, yes. Yeah. And I wanted to emphasize
Rick Archer: that because we don’t want people to get on a project of, you know, I mean, Gurdjieff had this thing where he had people remember the self. And I don’t know if this is what he intended, but the way they interpreted it was they ended up being very halting in their speech, they would say a word. Remember the self, say another word? Remember? They lost the ability to speak fluently. Okay.
Sean Webb: Yeah, that was horrible. Yeah. So I mean, from from just a general perspective, I think, you know, any type of meta awareness practice should be part of the day. And you’re right. I mean, being not trying to completely separate but being that existence that has that action, or that activity going on at the same time, as more accurate way to put it. But I think taking a moment, even during your regular day, like a lot of people love meditation, but some people can’t meditate, or they report that they can’t, probably because they haven’t tried enough or they’re
Rick Archer: learned in such a way that’s difficult. Yes. There’s something else that wouldn’t Yes,
Sean Webb: exactly. But you know, this, this type of an approach is different in that you can stop and say, Okay, what were the two variables that came together? Because there’s only two variables that come together to create every emotional reaction you ever have? What were the two variables that came together to create this instance of anger, this flash of fear, this flash of nervousness, or whatever it was, that just arose within me, right? You take a moment to reflect on that. And all of a sudden, that dumps you into meta awareness, that same space that we’re we are when we’re meditating. And that has physiological effects on our body, it can reduce our stress levels. It turns off, when we put the cognitive understanding of the emotion that we just exploded with it downregulates I mean, they saw it on fMRI live, where it’s called in the name attainment effect. They spawned a whole set of studies where when you put a level of understanding to your emotional reaction, it turns it down in real time, and you get your prefrontal cortex back, because you’re one of the first things your limbic system does when it starts firing. Shut off your thinking brain. What is great. If you’re 150 years ago, and you’re a farmer and you walk up on a snake, all you need is energy in your legs to run. But today where we have cubicles and we have spreadsheets and we have, you know, phone calls and emails and whatnot, we have to think our way out of our problems a lot of times. And when we have an emotional reaction in a situation, it makes it worse for us to be able to solve those problems when they arise, because we can’t use our thinking brain to get out of them. Well, if you take a moment, one of the things that I like to tell people to do when you take a moment to review what’s going on in your mind, from a cognitive understanding perspective of what’s going on in your mind. Well, that’s the same thing as a quick meditation. Physiologically speaking, it has absolutely nothing to do with the action that you’re taking, you don’t stop and just go and just be with your anger for a second, you actually look at it from a proactive point of view of okay, this is the thought that triggered my anger. And this is the thing within myself map that is being attacked, that I want to defend. Because there’s specific definitions of anger and fear and sadness, etc. Well, as soon as you do that, that pushes the same magic buttons as meditation. We don’t know why. But it does. And so that’s another way of entering this meta awareness place to say, I’m going to take control of my mind, I’m going to step back and put a curtain down between the reaction of my mind and what’s going on in my body. And, you know, take a moment and get back control of
Rick Archer: that. So let’s take a practical example just to illustrate the point. So let’s say that you’re going to the airport, and you have to catch this flight, it’s gonna cost you a lot of money. If you miss the flight, you’re gonna miss an important appointments in some other city or something like that. And somebody crashes into the back of your car, and you have to stop and trade license and you’re going to miss your flight. Yeah, so you know, Now, contrast, Shawn Webb’s reaction to that situation with Joe row rages reaction to that situation? How is it different? And how would you teach or coach Joe road rage, to change his way of reacting to situations like that?
Sean Webb: Sure. Well, Joe road rage is going to go into amygdala hijack, and his prefrontal cortex is going to shut down because what’s happening in his subconscious mind is that he has a number of attachments on his self map, the self map, the side, the idea of self, in our, in our mind, isn’t just the people around us and our ideas of politics and religion and our preferences of whatever our favorite color is, and things like that, it can be the attachments of I need to make this meeting. Right? It can be like, there was a great example of that I used in one of the books of a blown call at a World Series game that enraged half of the the fans in the stands because it was such a bad call, they were expecting in a split second, the umpire to make the call that the guy was out when he made the call that the guy was safe. And all of a sudden, it turned into the winning run that flipped the World Series. And so people were enraged about that, and you can still walk around St Louis and find people who are still upset about that day and about that call. So, you know, these things can be attached to yourself map in your mind very quickly. And so Joe road rage is going to be attached to he needs to get to that meeting, which is also attached to his sense of self regarding his responsibility level, his organization level, his you know, success and maybe what that means to his monetary gain, you know, there are a number of things that those associations are going to be attached to, that are all being attacked now, by the one instance of the guy running into his his car. So now, that’s going to be an attack on all those values of self items. So it’s from a mathematical standpoint, that’s going to be the devaluation of a number of things on his self map. And anger is logically defined as the reaction that you have to a devaluation of self that you don’t want to accept or that you want to defend against and that’s where the hire comes up. That’s where the the adrenaline comes up, it’s where the fight or flight comes up and you want to start punching people you want to fight against that devaluation of self like even a bear you go into this rage of wanting to punch the bear on the nose well the the physiological reason that occurs is because you don’t want to take that ultimate devaluation of your body that ends your life. You want to defend against that and that’s what that emotion is all about. Well his anger and rage is going to be triggered by all of these things that he’s mentally attached to that are now under attack that he wants to defend against because it’s not his fault this asshole and back of him ran into his car and now he’s gonna go off on this guy and try to feel better about himself. There’s a little bit of science behind beside the behind the catharsis reaction but he’s gonna be out of control. If he were to a not be attached to those things as vehemently not see, you know, not understand his sense of self as being just these things of being something larger than just this is self map. Then he would have been under control over that whole situation in mass. But if you were to take a moment to say, Okay, I understand that all of these things are now under attack. And it’s not really this guy that has done it to me, it’s the event that I want to defend against, is the fact that I didn’t plan well enough to give myself a little bit more time to get to the airport, so that I could have a 10 minute interaction with a guy on the road, that I wouldn’t miss my flight, you know, that type of thing. If he were to be able to understand why the anger is occurring, first of all, physiologically speaking, he is going to be turned down in his limbic system, because he has a cognitive understanding. And those messages are going to be sent from the prefrontal cortex back to the limbic system. So that’s going to turn off to a certain extent. The way I would see that situation is just that shit happens, you know, and
Rick Archer: idealistic. I’m reminded to read your Kipling’s poem, I think it was called if and if you could keep your head while all around you are losing theirs. Yeah. And you’ll be a man my son. You know, it sounds nice. But boy, I mean, the conditioning runs deep in their layers, there’s layer after layer after layer of it. Yeah, on the Vedic system, they will talk about some scars of deep impressions that are rooted. Yeah. Various strata of the nervous system that don’t one your case you just flipped, you know, one day and everything changed. Yeah. For most people. It’s it’s incremental, sort of catharsis or purging process where purification takes place, even perhaps decades,
Sean Webb: it is a process because the brain is plastic.
Rick Archer: And that’s not going to no form ultimately, overnight. No,
Sean Webb: it’s not. And but the good news is, the more you work with it, the more it’s going to help you it’s I mean, the the brain is that thing that is crazy, that creates all your crazy thoughts in your mind gets out of control, and yada, yada, yada, but it’s also there to help you and it will, it will react to your intention. And your conscious will if you let it and if you’re persistent with it. I mean, you know, a lot of people, you know, even with habit forming, right, you get up and go to the gym, once you’re not going to create a habit, you know, you get up and go to the gym to I think 21 times is the current number, then you’re going to, you’re going to want to get up and go to the gym. Because your brain is in that pattern to say, I really liked the endorphin rush, I really like the you know, the feeling that I’m taking control of my exercise regimen and things like that. It just takes a little bit of persistence,
Rick Archer: okay, so So obviously, as with a sport, or the gym, or learning to play the piano or anything in life that you have learned, you’re saying that, you know, this is not something you’re going to master on day one. So don’t get discouraged if you don’t, right. But if you stick with it, changes will happen. Yeah,
Sean Webb: you will see immediate, immediate changes, I mean, the thing that you when you start to be able to see your mind, at least for the people who read the books, they reported an immediate, an immediate sense of liberation, in that they’re no longer held hostage to being that simple self map in their mind that they thought they were just yesterday, now they understand that they can see their mind from a short distance operating and that their what its output is optional for them to take into consideration. But then also that they see that they’re drawn back from it a little bit of their that they’re more than just their mind, they’re, you know, the mind is, of course part of you. And it’s, it’s never, you’re never going to be without it, it’s always going to have an influence on you, it’s always ultimately going to help you make your decisions and take your actions. But at the same time, if your awareness can be pulled back from that from just a little bit with a contemplative practice, or a meta awareness practice, just by understanding how it is these people say, Oh, my God, this, just this little shift right here just changed my life. So from day one, it’s kind of a cool little thing that can happen. But then as you expand that practice, it can get deeper and wider and more profound. Without the full blown, you know, Enlightenment thing occurring.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Although that wouldn’t be so bad either.
Sean Webb: You know, it wouldn’t be so bad.
Rick Archer: There’s a verse in The Gita about the transcendence processes being like a tortoise withdrawing its legs into its shell, you’re taking the senses or sort of doing a 180? And going within rather than out? Yeah. And then, you know, repeating that process over time, cultures, the ability to sort of be in both worlds at the same time, right, you know, with no conflict or anything. So, if have we actually said in this interview so far, that the essence of what it is that you want people to know that they walk away from this interview, and begin to put into practice? What you’d like them to be able to do to or is there or is there more you could say, which will enable them to do that? Or do they really have to read the books?
Sean Webb: Well, it’s the experience of seeing their own mind. They think, I mean, they’re, you know, again, this goes back to the ineffable conversation that you can’t just say some magic words and how people get the benefit. Have what it is you want them to get, it would be me saying, you know, let’s talk about how it feels to be in a hot tub, you have to have that experience. And so the Red Book, I think it would be like, okay, just pick up the Red Book and just read the Red Book, mind hacking habit as volume one. And if when you’re able to see your own mind, then your blinders will be taken off. So that would be really it in that, you know, my, the message that I would want to see given to people so that they would be motivated to take that step would be, look, when you understand how to see your own mind, creating your pain and suffering in real time, it will change your life, I cannot give that to you, without you actually seeing it and without you actually experiencing it. This is the stack of paper that will explain to you to where you can see it in your own mind. And then that experience of them being there in their own mind seeing their own pain and suffering being created before their eyes, then changes them and that’s, that’s a game changer right there. That is a that is the thing that your your mind expands and cannot snap back from that experience. And so you know, that I think would be the thing that I would want everybody to take away to say, you can listen to everyone, you can listen to every enlightened teacher you could ever compile. And it may help you a little bit of your understanding your intellectual understanding your knowledge that you grasp about this concept, but you’re not gonna get it without the experience. And so I would rather tell you, hey, there’s a hot tub over there. And it’s on and it’s empty. And and you take, you’re gonna you take a left, take a right, and it’s right there in front of you, and then have people go do that. But the experience itself is going to be the real teacher. Right?
Rick Archer: So some people who are listening to this will be inspired to get your books and read them and go more deeply into this. But let’s say regardless of whether or not they do that, let’s, let’s say people are listening to this at nine in the morning. Yeah, what can they try now for the rest of the day? To kind of before getting books or anything like that? What can they try today, to put into practice? Yeah, to give them a taste. Okay, what you’re talking about,
Sean Webb: right? So from a basic perspective, to understand your mind and its operations, there’s a portion you know, a lot of your your thoughts are going to be a lot of your unconscious or subconscious thoughts are going to be about what’s going on around you in the in the analysis of the things that are going on in your environment, whether you’re at the gym, on the treadmill, or whatever it is, you’re looking at, the people are walking around walking towards you and your your brain is subconsciously analyzing for potential threats to sell. When you’re driving around in your car, you’re watching the traffic and things like that. That is a natural function of your brain. And then on the other side of that, that creates your perception, right that analysis of your environment. Then on the other side of that, you have this thing that fills the other side of your equation of emotion, which is your expectation and or preference, about the things on yourself map. And the things on yourself map in your mind, are the laundry list of things that your brain needs to officially check for threats against, but they’re the people that are around you, they’re your job and your expectation of income. They’re your beliefs in politics, and religion and your ideas of your preference of this and that your favorite sports team, all of these things come together in a laundry list of what your mind says is you every reaction that you have to the world is going to be a result of your perception of your brain analyzing what’s going on around you in the world via a headline or a movement of, you know, a body of someone around your or an idea that floats through your head. It’s gonna be a perception that you have, and it’s going to be weighed versus your expectation or preference about your, your self, your life stuff. And if you can just look at those two things to say, Okay, what on myself map? What portion of me was this latest mental reaction I’m having? What was that about? Was it about my sports team? Was it about my preference in politics or religion? Was it about my expectation that I was going to be able to make this green light, you know, whatever it was, and what was my perception, just practicing those two things will change your perspective, from that of being in your mind and in the mess to being one of watching your mind and watching the mess. And that will create a small shift within your consciousness that will expand your sense of self. So that little simple trick right there couldn’t couldn’t make a shift within you.
Rick Archer: Let’s try to make it even simpler. And let’s try to take a practical case in point. So let’s say you’re watching the Morning News. Yes. And Donald Trump has tweeted something. Yes. And depending upon your feelings about Donald Trump, you have one or another kind of reaction. Yes. What he’s tweeting Yes. And but let’s include pro Trump people in this. Yep. And so how can that little incident be used as a tool for, you know, advancing in the way that you’re advising here what? Let’s say you hate it, you love it one way or the other, what would you do in that instance,
Sean Webb: to understand your mind better, and the reactions that you’re having within your mind to understand that you’re more than your mind that your existence is, is beyond mine just a little bit, and that you have a mind that you aren’t to your mind, just take a look at that reaction, the you know, the equation of motion variables that you have are gonna be your expectation or preference about something and yourself, that being an idea about Donald Trump, your politics, or whatever it is. And then your perception, your perception is either going to be within appraisal process your perception, and you’re gonna say, Okay, that’s a positive thing for my trump item, or my politics item, or that’s a negative thing for my politics item. And when you look at that, be it positive or negative, I mean, if your perception is that it’s positive, you’re gonna have a happy feeling about that tweet. And if you’re a pro Trump supporter, if your perception about that tweet is negative, then you’re gonna have a negative reaction associated with yourself map. Just looking at that, whether it’s positive or negative, just looking at that dumps you into that place called meta awareness. Meta awareness is that special place is a real psychological thing that psychology studies in your mind that your mind is you’re able to then turn your awareness back onto itself. And so like when you you’re daydreaming, you’re caught in the Daydream. You’re in the Daydream, you’re fantasizing about Brad Pitt coming over in his Ferrari and picking you up, take you for a ride, or whatever it is. And then all of a sudden, you’re like, Oh, I’m daydreaming. That moment is your meta awareness moment. That’s the moment that your mind has looked back upon itself to say, Oh,
Rick Archer: I’m caught up in a fantasy. Yes. I’m always shattered. Maybe the the old movie screen analogy is handy here. Yeah, you know that everybody knows that analogy where the movie is playing, and it’s shining on the screen, and we don’t see the screen because of the movie overshadows it? Yes. And maybe if you could somehow increase the light behind the screen or something to the point where you see the screen. Even though the movies playing on it, then you realize, oh, it’s the screen? Is this non changing flat surface and all these movies and changing things that have been totally caught up? And are not the totality of the situation? Yes. So what you’re saying is meta awareness moment is a recognition of glimpse. Screen.
Sean Webb: Yes. Yeah. And you can dope yourself into that means, you know, with intention, like a lot of times, we just find ourselves in a meta awareness moment, like, Oh, I’m daydreaming or Oh, I forgot. I’m not going to the to my office. I’m going to the dentist. And I may taking the wrong term. That’s a meta awareness moment.
Rick Archer: 90 degrees and my kids in the backseat, right? Yeah.
Sean Webb: Exactly. Exactly. So those are things that often happen accidentally, well, you can intentionally enter meta awareness and you should as often as possible, and that’s what meditation is. You’re entering intentionally meta awareness.
Rick Archer: Eventually, you’re in meta awareness all the time. Yeah. Yeah. Really? She
Sean Webb: tried to be Yeah. You don’t try to be it happens spontaneously. With a plastic changes in your brain dude, enough. Yeah,
Rick Archer: you system. So back to the Trump tweet that say, rather than just putting statements to see if I’ve got it, you know, you might have a positive or negative reaction, but there’s a little bit of distance and you realize, you know, this is my politics, and I love the guy or I hate the guy or whatever. But there’s a bigger picture, and I am not my lover my hate. There’s there’s kind of a broader awareness. That is what I am. Yes. And it’s not all about, you know, adamant insistence that I am right, and he is right or wrong, or whatever. Yeah, there’s just a little distance is created. Yeah. Okay. Let’s do that with just a moment of reflection.
Sean Webb: Yeah, you’re saying, Yeah, intentional reflection, it puts you into that space of being in that, just beyond mind. And when you’re in that space of just beyond mind, that’s when you can start to hear the things that happen, just beyond the noise of your mind, which is really cool. Yeah. That’s how artificial emotional intelligence is gonna work by the way. So the analysis of self map, you create a self of an artificial entity and then you create a perception engine and the difference between the two then creates artificial emotions for the personality.
Rick Archer: how long we’ve been going now,
Sean Webb: we have been going an hour and a half.
Rick Archer: Okay, so What haven’t we covered that he would like to cover or elaborate upon not that we need to go another half hour but you know what we’d like people to know that we haven’t done I haven’t thought to ask that I haven’t read in your book. And
Sean Webb: now I think you know, your, your listeners are pretty up to speed with a lot of this spiritual stuff. I think that you know, we’re headed in a good direction. And, you know, sometimes when you hit stumbling block If you’re in that space, you can take a different approach. And so, you know, what I put out in my books is just kind of a different approach and the same old story of expanding self and expanding, understanding, expanding consciousness becoming more than what you were yesterday, in a way that’s natural, in a way that’s, you know, just feels good and is and can, can work for you, without a whole lot of struggle, because a lot of people, you know, they want to force themselves into it. And it doesn’t have to be that way. Yeah, you know, if you work with your body, and you work with your physiology, and you work with how your body and mind naturally work, and you just learn to push the buttons that help your body then align with your intentions, then, you know, it can be you can expand, regardless of what level of development that you’ve had, what your high watermark is, you can develop a deeper and develop it more naturally. So,
Rick Archer: do you work with people personally?
Sean Webb: Yeah. Yeah, you know, it’s been through email, mostly a couple through Skype. But it’s, you know, just kind of a one on one people reach out and say, hey, help, although I have had some some success with the Red Book, some, some real big developments have occurred with the mine hacking happiness, volume, one book, in that, we’ve had a group of folks who have reached out and said, we’ve failed for decades with AAA. And we have since cured our addictions with understanding our mind and how it works through my book. And so now we’re actually going to take that, you know, because they were able to cure their addictions, by understanding their mind and being able to see within their mind, we’re actually going to take that material and mold it into a program for addiction. And so that’s fun. We’ve got a big problem, though. Yeah, it’s huge. And, yeah, so we’ve got some folks who are really behind that, because that we’ve really transformed their life in that vein. And then I’ve also a couple of guys have reached out, ex Special Forces guys who had problems with PTSD. And they’ve found that reading the Red Book, helped cure their PTSD symptoms. Now, you know, it’s a reduction, it’s a down regulation. But so we’re working on a program to mold that into a PTSD program with a couple of seals and an Airborne Ranger guy. And so it’s just kind of, you know, it’s just kind of, it’s really cool to be able to do that work and to work with these folks and see practical application of it and see benefit. That is life transforming.
Rick Archer: It seems a little intellectual in a way, and you’re an you’re a very well educated kind of intellectual guy, and people might get the impression that well, is over my head, you know?
Sean Webb: Yeah, it’s not. It’s not I mean, the science behind it, if you want to go deep, and you want to understand the nooks and crannies, and every little detail, yeah, there’s a lot of scientific studies and a lot of stuff that goes into the research to be able to put together the stuff. But the stuff itself, the approach itself is really simple. It’s like, you look at this variable in your mind, and you look at this variable in your mind. And then magic happens, because you have how your brain is wired. And it’s not, it doesn’t require a high level of understanding of science or anything like that, to be able to enable it to happen. And you know, to be able to look into your mind and see your mind and then have me in that space of the observer, different than what it was in the past. You know, just being with your anger and looking at your anger and a lot of the things that, like Master Matthieu, Ricard has taught us about, you know, mastering the mind and watching the mind that being the observer, if you can understand it, from a systems perspective to say, here are the two things in my mind that caused my anger that caused my fear that caused my sadness. And then you all of a sudden, it stops because you put an understanding to that mind because of the magic button or the name attainment effect in your brain. You don’t have to understand all the science to have it work for you. Right, you don’t have to understand the science of boiling water to put the pot on the stove and make some coffee
Rick Archer: know the science of how a car works in order to drive one right. Exactly. Have to be a mechanic to do that. Right. Yeah. And other places might be useful is in prisons, you know, because I mean, a lot of crime as a result of impulsive behavior. Yeah. And somebody does something in a in a moment of anger and then has to sit in prison for years or decades as a result. Yeah. Regret that moment. And obviously, the prisons are also often hotbeds of tension, you know, if a lot of that can be diffused through something like this.
Sean Webb: Yeah, I went to a I went to a Search Inside Yourself at the instructor training thing. It was in their first cohort. And one of my white roommate actually, for that program is sent the Red Book to his son who is in prison right now, and seemingly has helped him understand and get a better grasp of what’s going on inside prison and he goes, I wish I’d had this before.
Rick Archer: Do you receive any fun So remuneration for this other than selling the book?
Sean Webb: No, not yet. I mean, we’re working on programs. And, you know, ultimately we do want to have some type of revenue support the effort of being able to get it out to folks. But I mean, really, you know, like, as far as personal wealth development, things like that, it’s not really my focus, if we could develop a revenue that could support getting it out to more people and helping more folks, I wouldn’t, you know, argue against that. But we haven’t, we’re just now getting to the point where we’re putting together the website and putting together the online programs that we’ll charge some money for, and things like that, to help support the infrastructure people working on Yeah, I mean, the folks that are doing the, the addiction program and the PTSD program, and some other volunteers that have come together to decide this has changed my life, and I want to be a part of it. So we got some volunteers and stuff.
Rick Archer: Nice. Yeah. And you live in North Carolina, North Carolina. But these people you collaborate with are scattered around all
Sean Webb: over the place. Yeah. Yeah. Okay. Took them in kind of fun. We’ll see how far it goes, like, retired from your regular job?
Rick Archer: Are you still working? And this is
Sean Webb: kind of been, you know, my wife, fortunately, has a good income that helps support the family. And this has some seemingly some promise to create some revenue in the future.
Rick Archer: Putting a lot of your time and attention in this. Yeah. Nice.
Sean Webb: Yeah. So because I mean, ultimately, I mean, you know how it is, you get that awakening, you have such a dramatic transformational experience, and you want to share it with everybody, and you just figure out a way to make the money work. Right. And that’s kind of what you know, we’re in that position to doing at this point.
Rick Archer: Yeah, that’s kind of the way BatGap started. I mean, this will be my ninth year doing it. And I initially just started with the seed idea. And then pretty soon, I thought, Alright, I just want to make this freely available to as many people as possible. Yeah. And if the numbers grow enough and peep enough, people will just sort of feel like supporting it, that maybe I’ll be able to do it full time. Yeah. And that it was a gradual transition. But finally quit the remnants of my day job last March. Oh, cool. Congratulations. That’s really neat. We put our full attention on this. Yeah.
Sean Webb: Well, you’re doing a great service. I mean, I haven’t seen all of the the interviews, obviously, but I’ve seen a number of them. And I think you’re doing a great service to the folks who are out there seeking for a higher level of understanding for a higher level of and wanting to connect. Like there are folks who live in the middle of nowhere, who wouldn’t normally have an opportunity to hear these great speakers convey their knowledge and convey their experience. And and you know, that then gleans on to the folks who are out in the middle of nowhere, who were able to reach out through these communication paradigms and find your podcast and get access to all these awesome, cool, folks.
Rick Archer: Yeah, that’s a cool thing about the internet. I mean, that that, to me, has spiritual implications for the world. And then for collective consciousness and so on. It’s almost like, you know, this global brain was evolved in order to facilitate the Enlightenment, of humanity. I mean, it can facilitate all kinds of other things. Yeah. Hacking election stuff. Yeah. But it’s, uh, without this, I mean, you know, somebody like Jesus could only reach as many people as he could wander around in sandals, you know, in the Middle East or something. And then, as we were saying earlier, if he can’t, if he had, you know, Skype or whatever, he’d be able to reach the whole planet, right? Instead, it goes from one to the next over generations and gets gets corrupted and distorted. So it’s really cool that there’s this kind of many to many technology now. Yes, where all kinds of spirit people are having awakenings and then able to convey it to others.
Sean Webb: There’s a lot of noise that’s being created, but at the same time, there’s a lot of knowledge and wisdom that’s being conveyed. Right. There’s a lot more to sift through to find your your nuggets to find that the people who know what they’re talking about and can speak from the heart and convey something that lands. But yeah, I agree with you. I think the communication technologies today are going to be one of the greatest developments for unity and spiritual energy, kind of this confluence of love and sharing and breaking down the walls that has ever occurred.
Rick Archer: Yeah, remember when I was a kid, I saw something on some science show about that. They have this whole they’re demonstrating nuclear fusion, or maybe this fission and they had a whole roomful of mousetraps, all set with ping pong ball on each mousetrap. Yeah. And then they threw in one ping pong ball and they started going off. They’re all firing each other. So it’s seems to be kind of like that in terms of this spiritual epidemic that’s taking place. There’s kind of this ignition that’s happening from one to the next and one to the next. And and it’s able to kind of role more kind of exponentially or something with the advent of these technologies, right, than just the sort of one to one to one kind of thing?
Sean Webb: Yeah. Yeah. And I think that’s important. I mean, you know, we are a social creature we are, you know, and a lot of us know that, you know, there is no separation between you and me. And there is no separation between us and the other people in the room and us and the other people on the, on the other side of the planet, right, we’re all part of the same field, we’re all part of the same consciousness, we’re all part of this, the same one energy field, and reconnecting with that simply because, you know, we have separate bodies and seemingly separate minds and things like that. Reconnecting with that, and making those connections, I think is, is a huge benefit for humanity. And, you know, we’re gonna have growing pains and whatnot. Ultimately, as we start to identify the differences in how we think and feel and, and you know, we’re exposed to attacks on it’d be because of these communication paradigms. But I think ultimately, all that’s gonna come out in the wash. Yeah.
Rick Archer: You mentioned boiling water A while ago, you know, this water boils that turned into a Fahrenheit or 100 degrees centigrade. And water can be at one one degree less than those transition points and not appear that anything is happening with it. But when the when the boiling point is reached all sudden, it’s boiling. Yeah. And they call that phase transition. Right. And there are many examples of it in science. But some people speculate that society itself may undergo a faith transition once a sufficient number of people have reached a sufficient degree of awareness or coherence.
Sean Webb: Yeah, you’d hope so that you mean you have the science of tipping points, right? Yeah. And I would hope that there’s going to be a tipping point, soon of, you know, kind of the spiritual energy, you know, you never know what’s going to happen. I mean, you know, you have this, this quantum mechanics and all this other stuff that, you know, is now kind of been proven that our brains are wired into, there may be some kind of scientific tipping point that occurs because of, you know, the synergy of multiple minds falling into kind of a synchronicity.
Rick Archer: Yeah. And since you use that phrase, of course, there are these lethal tipping points in environmental science and methane melting and, and in the Arctic, and stuff like that. And, you know, many feel that once a certain number of tipping points have been crossed, we’re doomed. But it may be that the spiritual awakening that seems to be happening around the world is sort of the the Earth’s immune system kicking in right out to fight this fever.
Sean Webb: Yep. Time to kill off a bunch of folks.
Rick Archer: But it’s kind of like the talk literally, about everything being intelligent. It’s like the intelligence of nature is through its instruments us creating a response to possibly counteract the dire consequences of our stupidity. Yeah.
Sean Webb: Well, I mean, it’s, it’s an invention of the human mind that our existence is more important than the ant out there on that field crawling around on the pine straw. And, you know, the, the entire balance of nature is, you know, it’s our idea that we’re at the top of that, and then we’re not just intermixed with that, and that we’re more important than any of that. And I think if we do such a harm to nature, nature’s gonna come and bite us. Yeah. And it’s gonna, you know, like, systems self regulate Mother
Rick Archer: Nature’s yield margin.
Sean Webb: Exactly. I remember that a long time ago. It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature.
Rick Archer: Well, there’s something to that. I mean, what you say, on the other hand, you would sacrifice an act before you’d sacrifice your child. So there’s some truth to the sort of the value of more complex systems. Yeah, but that doesn’t give us license to
Sean Webb: doesn’t make it right environment,
Rick Archer: right. You know, I mean, if we’re stewards of nature, then that means we’re, we’re trying we ought to have its best its health in mind and not just rape it, you know, for greedy purposes, right? Totally.
Sean Webb: And that’s what comes with, you know, understanding self as something larger than, you know, your personal existence or your familiar familial existence with your kids or whatever it is. And that’s why the genes walk around with brooms sweeping off their paths so that they don’t step on those ants. They value all life equally, and say, I’m not more important than that and is out there. I think, think there’s gonna be some mechanisms in nature that I mean, you know, I mean, look at antibiotics, right? We have this hubris about antibiotics. Being able to kill these viruses and whatnot with these super viruses are not giving up. These super viruses are becoming antibiotic resistance, and we’re only going to have like 100 years of antibiotic efficacy before these super viruses start killing off millions of people again, yeah. And that’s going to be a reality won’t. Nature has its mechanisms to say, if you start screwing up We’re gonna we’re gonna adjust. And in that’s okay. I mean, it’s it’s a natural existence of, you know, the entirety of consciousness, regulating down regulating the system and potentially the emergent property. But I think it’s a fundamental core component of existence of all of the universe. And it’s there’s intelligence there. You know, we have to we have to succumb to that we have to be respectful of that.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Well, that’s kind of what I was trying to say before with that quote, from the Vedas, about being aligned with nature’s intelligence rather than out of touch with it, because you’re not in touch with its source. Yeah. You know, there are consequences to not being in touch with source. Yeah. And And conversely, being attuned to that source is the antidote to those consequences. Yeah, you know, can hopefully potentially turn things around?
Sean Webb: Yeah. Going with the flow rather than against?
Rick Archer: Well, you and I could go on all day. We could
Sean Webb: we could. We have on many occasions. We’ll probably be John tonight after the conference.
Rick Archer: Okay, great. So thanks for this Shama. I’m glad we finally got to do this. Yeah. Yeah. And I’ll put a page up on BatGap about this interview linking to your website, which is mine hacking happiness.com. And, you know, links to your books and all that stuff. So as always, people can check that out and, you know, go through those links and everything if they want to read John’s books or get in touch with them or whatever. Yeah. I hope everyone has enjoyed this.
Sean Webb: Yeah, it was fun. See you guys