Rick Archer: Welcome to Buddha at the Gas Pump. My name is Rick Archer, Buddha at the Gas Pump is an ongoing series of interviews with spiritually Awakening people. I’ve done about 516 Something of them. Now. If this is new to you, and you haven’t seen any of these and you’d like to check out previous ones, please go to bat gap comm bat gap and look under the past interviews menu. Also, if you feel like subscribing to the YouTube channel, you’ll get a notification every time a new interview is posted. And I think once you hit that subscribe button, there’s a little bell that pops up. And if you hit the bell, then they really notify everyone everything. I think they even notify you when I start one of the live streams, you get a little email or some message pops up. So you can watch the live streams that way if you want to. This program is made possible through the support of appreciative listeners and viewers. So if you appreciate it, and we’d like to help support it, there’s a PayPal button on every page of the site. And if you don’t like PayPal, which some people don’t, there’s a page explaining other ways to do it. My guest today is Terry Stevens. Welcome, Terry. Hello, Rick, good to see you. I’ve actually been seeing you for a few minutes. But I’m good to see you formally now. Terry is an Australian born teacher and guide of non duality. Like us all Terry had his own personal backstory on me, which included sexual abuse as a child living in a dysfunctional and broken family, followed by drug addiction, divorce, depression and anxiety with suicidal thoughts. Cheerful introduction, their terror. Yeah, he’s also been a student and chief instructor in the art of Kung Fu for most of his life. So it was all that broken home and drug addiction stuff going on alongside of kung fu or did somehow the Kung I should think the Kung Fu would have helped to clear all that up.
Terrence Stephens: Other time at 13. So there was no, there was no longer any dysfunction going on because I left arm.
Rick Archer: But then the addiction and the depression are compounded that didn’t cheer that up a bit.
Terrence Stephens: No. It came later.
Rick Archer: Okay. Just curious. Yeah. Yeah. All right. So you’ve you’ve been a professional singer, songwriter, musician. Do you still do that? Are you just something you did at some point? Now? Something something I did at some point? Yeah. Okay. And has also run several successful companies as a director. Director means like, a CEO or something that that means.
Terrence Stephens: Directors usually associated with being an owner of a company.
Rick Archer: No, no. Okay. And I complimented Terry before we started on his artistic sensitivity, just I was saying if I were single, living alone, I would never have all this cool artwork on the wall and and everything so neat and tidy, and I don’t even think I’d make the bed. I always tell my wife why make it we’re just going to sleep in it again tonight. Anyway, a little bit of trivia frivolity here. So during Gary’s journey, he consulted various psychologists and therapists and pursued a variety of spiritual paths and self help groups. Nothing seemed to relieve the deep seated experience of separation and isolation. Then one day in 1986, he chanced that’s quite a while back, he chose to meet sailor Bob Adamson who had settled in Melbourne, following his 12 months with Nisargadatta, Maharaj and Bombay. I’m surprised that Nisargadatta let let him stay that long. I heard he usually kick people out after a week or two or something, but he managed to stay whole year. On and off, yeah, yeah. Maybe way back then. It wasn’t so mobbed and he let people stay around longer. Yeah, yes. So anyway, here, Terry gained an intellectual understanding of non duality. However, it was many years later that his sense of self me finally collapsed. What resulted was no more searching, no wanting, and no desires, and a state of being carefree. It was in this state of collapse that his true nature was revealed awakening from the dream to fictitious personal character. Since then, Terry has been playing Finding the way found the direct yet delivered with compassion, warmth and fun. Okay, so let’s hope so. Yeah. So far, so good. And I’ve listened to quite a few hours of your recordings, and you always seem pretty compassionate, warm and fun. So I think you’re walking your talk. So there’s various ways we could start. And as I told you, before we started recording, I brushed up on my Nisargadatta and jotted down about four pages worth of notes, little quotes from him and commentaries and stuff. And to what extent do you here’s a question that pops to mind. To what extent do you feel that what you teach is a replica or a mirror, you know, of what sailor Bob has been teaching? And but in the same vein, to what extent you feel the sale of Bob’s teaching is a replica or a mirror of the way Nisargadatta taught? Or have you each put your own spin on it?
Terrence Stephens: It comes out of and if you look at all three, it gets expressed out of all three differently. What it’s pointing to, is the same. Yeah, and primarily primarily. You know, in the saga, the saga data took the line of neti neti. So it was see I don’t profess to be a teacher, Bob wouldn’t profess to be a teacher, either. So this is it’s actually it’s an on learning, teaching things. Yeah, there’s no knowledge, I have no knowledge to give anybody. It’s literally and I’m learning. So the, the process is coming to see and experience the absence of the personal self. Yeah. So that’s got to be challenged. You know, and, you know, most paths are about the personal self trying to acquire, trying to get trying to improve, constantly trying to reach out more sex, whilst that’s happening, personal self is, you know, quite strong and still believed to be there. So, this is a really it’s about a deconstruction, as opposed to a getting,
Rick Archer: yeah. Now you are a musician. And I imagine that he would say that, as a musician, your musical abilities could be improved through practice and stuff. How do you distinguish that from an trying to improve a personal self?
Terrence Stephens: It’s just an idea. All of it, all of it is literally just an idea. You know, whilst whilst there’s the belief that we’re operating from a personal self, then yes, we believe that if I do A, B and C, I, me is going to improve, where the reality is, everything is literally just happening, spontaneously happening, whether it be practice or not. It’s only when mind steps in and, you know, claims ownership of that the problems arise. And the reality is, when you really, when you really look, when you really look, there is no doer.
Rick Archer: I’m gonna be a little bit playing devil’s advocate with you. But I think we’ll come to a common understanding. So to my understanding, most of the most eminent advisor sages, always taught that, you know, they said what you just said, but on a pragmatic, pragmatic or relative level of phenomena, the personal consciousness and its behaviors in the conditioned, quote, unquote, free will, were regarded as experientially or empirically real. And there’s a concept in Advaita Vedanta, which treats this which deals with this, it’s called via Harka. Satyam, and what it means is, it means transactional reality. And the the, the example often used is that of pots in a room clay pots, you go in and to the room, and you could you could say, there are no pots here, there’s only clay, and you would be right. But only in a sort of absolute sense in in relative sense. There are still pots in the room, even though they’re only clay, and they function as pots and can be used for practical purposes. So in an absolute sense, you can say there’s no personal self, but in a relative sense. There is it a sort of a well, we’ll get into this more, but I would conjecture I would posit that there is a sort of A personal consciousness that still functions as a faculty, just as the senses function as a faculty or the voice or other such things. Do you agree or disagree with that?
Terrence Stephens: Personal consciousness?
Rick Archer: Well, I’ll have to elaborate on what we mean by that. But
Terrence Stephens: yeah, totally disagree. Look, what happens, Rick is. There’s there’s a doing. There are thoughts that still happen. There are decisions that seem seem to arise. And then there’s a doing from those decisions, you know, that may arise in the mind. All of that still happens, as it always did. But the trick is seeing that it’s not me, that’s making the the decisions or doing the thinking or applying any action, actions will still happen, thoughts will still arise, decisions will still seem to be made. But there’s no personal self, they’re doing any of that.
Rick Archer: Well, again, I’m going to keep playing devil’s advocate here, but to my understanding, I have some quotes here. Nisargadatta like Ramana Maharshi, like Nagarjuna, like the Buddha and many other sages clearly taught that one cannot deny nor neglect this personal consciousness realm of pragmatic, experiencing behavior. There’s a there’s a there’s another term of Vedanta called Leisha Vidya, which means faint remains of ignorance. And Nisargadatta said, My world is just like yours. I see here I feel I think I speak and I act in a world I perceive just like you. But with you, it is all with me, it is almost nothing. And the word laser video actually means faint remains of ignorance. So there’s just this faint remains. But that’s what makes life possible to live. Without that remains, we wouldn’t be able to function whatsoever. When he said that.
Terrence Stephens: So what do I say to that wonder? Okay. Even post let’s look at that. Even post awakening after awakening. Okay. There are still thoughts, there is there is still a seeming location. Yeah. I can’t all of a sudden pop into your body broke out of your look out of your eyes and see me
Rick Archer: if you thought you feel the pain? I don’t. Correct?
Terrence Stephens: Correct. Yeah. It’s like, it’s discerning the difference between consciousness and awareness, really. In the realm of consciousness, in terms of this seeming personal identity that is being intimated that is still there, even after post awakening that all How do I put that duality, if you lie, is a product of consciousness. Yeah. So it’s like being conscious of it’s even being conscious of experiencing a beautiful sunset, or a beautiful sky. Now, awareness is just a complete absence of absence. That is just is just absolutely still an absolutely quiet. If you like, no mind, no mind occurs, no thoughts occur. So the idea of even being conscious on doesn’t arise.
Rick Archer: So it’s, you could say it’s a Yeah, I noticed that distinction as I was brushing up on my Nisargadatta. He does distinguish between consciousness and awareness. And awareness is a much more absolute unmanifest level, you could say. Perhaps, I think, I don’t know if he used the term power brahman or maybe not. But it does sound to be much more impersonal, fundamental, primordial, kind of level of being, whereas consciousness has more of a flavor of
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, yeah. Without consciousness, there’s no experience. Right? Right. 00 experience.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Here’s another quote that might be helpful. The surrogate, who will Ferrante often use the phrases, clarity and charity or charity and kindness and he spoke about love a lot. So he was, you know, definitely not into some kind of Neo mystic, you know, aloof, apathetic depersonalized kind of scene, which is what sometimes people who get into Neo Advaita get caught in. But here’s a nice quote he said the person, the I am this body, this mind this Chain of Memories, this bundle of desires and fears that disappears. But what you may call identity that remains, it enables me to become a person when required. Love creates its own necessities even of becoming a person.
Terrence Stephens: state of consciousness. Yeah, that is the state of consciousness. Yeah. What, what, what underlies all of it. And it’s extraordinarily difficult for mind. And I’m talking about dualistic mind to get to get a handle on it. But what underlies everything is love. Yeah, it absolutely is love, you know, you could call it you know, one of the essential properties, if I can go as if I can be as bold as to say that, of a of the absolute is the love to be. That’s the primary love. That’s the that’s the first initial pulse. If you like, don’t ask me why? It just is. Yeah. So that’s the first initial pulse. And we can we can experience that, Rick. Like, if I was to ask you, you know, anybody for that matter? What’s your primary love? What would you say? What is your primary love?
Rick Archer: Nuts? I think the first thing I’d say was that I’m not quite understand the question. And I don’t, I’m not I’m not sure what you’re asking, actually.
Terrence Stephens: Okay, what do you love most?
Rick Archer: Chocolate ice cream?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, whatever. Whatever. We will throw something up. Yeah. Well, I was joking around. But yeah, you are. Yeah. Most people if they have kids,
Rick Archer: I love my kids. Yeah.
Terrence Stephens: My children. That’s my primary love. That’s, that’s what I love most, you know. That’s what they believe. Yeah, is that they love their kids most, you know, now, I sometimes use this, I’ve got to change it. But anyway, if I challenged that, and I said, Okay, don’t stand up against that wall with your back against the wall, the person gets up, and they stand there with their back against the wall. And I walk over to them and I put my hands around their throat. And I start squeezing. And I squeeze and I squeeze and I squeeze and squeeze. Until they can’t breathe, then they stop the then they start to panic. And then what would occur is a fight, to survive a fight, to be literally to be the thought of their kids disappears. Like that’s not the primary love the primary love is literally to be an all human beings experience that
Rick Archer: I think I would have needed you in the grind before it got to the point where we know the story, right? The master takes the disciple to the river and pushes his head underwater. And you know, before he’s about to drown, he finally lets him breathe. And he said, you know, you gotta want God as much as you want it to breathe there. Right. You’ve heard that everybody’s heard that story.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. That’s the primary that’s that’s the first primary pulse. And with that, what gets born, if you like, is consciousness. And what what arises, what seemingly arises in consciousness is duality. But the reality is what the reason I said seemingly arises is duality is absolutely nothing but a product of mind. Absolutely, nothing but a product of mind. Its mind because it operates mind operates journalistically and in the absence of mind altogether when the mind goes completely quiet and still and there is absolutely no thoughts zero thoughts. What happens to duality
Rick Archer: then just sort of resolves into oneness?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, yeah. So So joviality is nothing but a product of mind. Yeah. And then then then the mind creates a pseudo person. Yeah, And if you if you really, really look at that, you know, I often say, you know, if I use the word teach, it’s the wrong word. But we’re not Jimmy. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Oh, see, I’m trying, you’re just demonstrating no mind right now. Right?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, actually beautiful.
Rick Archer: The two thoughts that came to mind when you said that about, the mind sort of gives rise to duality. I don’t mean to throw around so many Sanskrit phrases. But there’s another one, which is project,
Terrence Stephens: I won’t know them, by the way,
Rick Archer: I’ll explain them. But project. That means and what it means is the mistake of the intellect, and it’s that it’s just what you’re referring to this, the saying is that there’s some kind of fundamental core mistake that the intellect makes, which kind of gives rise to the whole perception of of duality and multiplicity, from the essential oneness. And that, you know, enlightenment is a matter of reversing that mistake or correcting that mistake. But there’s another thought which comes to mind, which is that, you know, I somehow I often think that if the if duality is is a product of mind, it’s got to be a product of cosmic mind or some kind of universal mind, because otherwise, we wouldn’t have intersubjective agreement, you know, I’d see a stop sign and you’d see an ostrich and somebody else would see nothing. And there’s a sort of a inner subjective agreement about what is around us in the world. And, you know, if one person gets down to the level of transcendence in unity, and there’s no world anymore, that doesn’t happen for everybody else. And in fact, the world has been developing for billions of years, before there were any minds around to perceive it. So anything about that? Are both those points.
Terrence Stephens: I love your questions. I’ve always loved your questions, by the way. Thanks. I think that I think the real question there is, what is it that is responsible for thought? Yeah. Is it me? Okay, that can be clearly looked at, he would say, No, because if I was responsible for thought, I don’t know about you, Rick. But I’ve just turned it off and go fishing for a week.
Rick Archer: But then, you’d have to think, Okay, I got to get this worm and put it on the hook. And I think I’ll cast it over there. That looks like a good spot.
Terrence Stephens: Would you? Would you though, that’s an assumption.
Rick Archer: Okay. Well, what would what would happen, actually,
Terrence Stephens: everything would just happen. Everything would just happen, even if there was like, very, very, very little thought Rick, is needed to function.
Rick Archer: I agree with that. Very little thought. But very little.
Terrence Stephens: Yep. Yep. Yeah, no. Everything, literally when you truly see is just occurring is just happening. Meal step in a split second later and claim ownership of all the doing, and so on. But it is literally just happening. It is all just happening. Getting back to duality. And the end the idea of a me being created by what is that may? What is it? We go, we’re told to go looking for it. What is it? Where is it? Where does it reside? Does it have a center? Does it have a flyover? Does it have boundaries? You know, we’re literally asked to go looking for it. I really, really easy way to see what that seeming me actually is. If I had the capacity now Rick to reach into the screen and touch you on your shoulder? I don’t. But if I did, and the moment that I did that I created absolute total personal amnesia in you know, your names gone, your history is gone. All of your history is completely gone. Yeah. Who would you be then? Where does the me go? In the absence of that history? What’s left? Literally, like, you don’t disappear in the absence of the story. You don’t disappear.
Rick Archer: Well, even now without you touching me on the shoulder. I don’t define myself in terms of my history. You know, one time I was sitting in front of a, I was sitting in this room that is sometimes used as a dance studio. And it was a lunch was being served there. And I was sitting at a table chatting with somebody, and I happen to look in the mirrors that line the wall, you know how they put mirrors up in dance studios. I saw myself sitting talking to this guy, and it’s like, struck me, I thought, wow, you know, that’s how people see me this, this little guy that, you know, because that’s definitely not my, my perception, if you will, of, of what I am.
Terrence Stephens: So what So what would you define yourself as?
Rick Archer: When I’m asked that question. It’s like, there’s this, and I want to get into this with you. There’s this sort of paradoxical. In fact, Nisargadatta said something about how the the ability to incorporate paradox and ambiguity is a good sign if it’s developed in a person. But I would say that I’m aware. I’m everywhere. And I’m right here. And somehow those three, paradoxically, opposite things are completely harmonized. In my experience, that makes sense.
Terrence Stephens: It totally does beautifully, beautifully production. So given that, you know that, what is the personal name?
Rick Archer: I think you could say, you know, that it’s like the old wave on the ocean analogy, it’s nothing but water, but it still has an appearance as a wave. And it functions as wave, if somebody calls my name, I respond, if I stubbed my toe, it felt here, as we were saying earlier. But there’s there’s also very much the, the scent the freedom, you could say, of the experience, that I’m not isolated to this six foot frame, you know, and that if it dies, it’s not going to be the end of what I am, because how could that die?
Terrence Stephens: So you said that it appears as a wave. Yeah, you can understand what do you mean by that? And where does it actually appear?
Rick Archer: In relative creation, you could say, there’s a Go ahead, Mother expand to that before I carry on.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, the person the personal sense of me. Where does that appear?
Rick Archer: Maybe you’re asking, in my own experience, where does it appear?
Terrence Stephens: Well, perhaps yours. I mean, this can apply to anybody that’s listening. Where, where we look, you know, we often paint these metaphors, you know, what I am is a wave and I’m no thing and I’m nothing and I’m everything, and I’m everywhere and no location and so on and so forth. Yep. Okay, good enough. And what’s the personal mean?
Rick Archer: Well, let’s, let’s, let’s learn how to answer it. He discusses our situation, situations involving three levels of identity, personal ego, consciousness, egoless, universal consciousness or knowingness. involved in the worlds of experience, and then transcendent world LIS not know, knowing absolute awareness or unmanifest reality. And so I tend to have this multi dimensional, beautiful view of it. Yeah, and no, none of the dimensions negate or obviate the others.
Terrence Stephens: So what you just described then was some awareness. Consciousness. Yeah. And I suppose in the support person, yeah. So that’s Yeah. Yeah. So we need to identify, what is this personal self? What is that? What is that? I, what I experienced Rick was I had what I thought at the time, was a profound intellectual understanding of non duality. Yep. But the truth was, if I was to be really honest with myself, yeah, the truth was, me still feels like I’m here. There’s no me. Still feels like I’m here. Yeah. In with this profound, what I thought was profound, intellectual understanding of non duality. Yeah. It’s that that may still feels like I’m here. That needs to be looked at. What what is that? What What’s what’s actually hurting? Because there’s something occurring there? What is it that’s actually occurring? That gives this sense of me? The personal, individual, separate, isolated person that still feels like it’s here? There’s something that’s actually occurring there.
Rick Archer: Yeah, well, it might be what I was saying before about. I mean, well, it depends on how predominant it is, don’t you think? I mean, for some people, that’s, that’s the whole, that’s the whole show is the sense of me, and there’s no other dimensionality to their experience. Others, you know, open up to something deeper. Now, are you are you saying that, you know, you can sort of function without any semblance of any personal self whatsoever?
Terrence Stephens: There is no personal self. So, yes. There is no personal self. And now I know you hate. I know, you hate hearing that. And I know a lot because it sounds like a bypass. But let me explain. Yeah, please. Okay. So why is it that with all this knowledge, and all this understanding, I still feel like, I’m here. Like, I remember experiencing that. And not saying how profound that statement was, I still feel like I’m here. I don’t know where else I expected to find myself, by the way, right? Other than here, but what dawned on me at the time, was, the reason that may, feels like it’s absolutely here was really, really, really simple. It was just a thought or mind that claims ownership of this presence is consciousness, he claims ownership of which gives rise to the mind believing that the me is
Rick Archer: the man made there.
Terrence Stephens: The Mate is this consciousness, awareness. Now, that being the case, right? If that’s what’s happening, then you’d have to ask yourself, Okay, what can a thought experience? What can a thought actually experience can actually experience water? Heat fire? What what candidate experience, if you really look, you will discover a thought doesn’t and can’t actually experience anything? Although it’s just a narrator just tells a story about stuff it describes. It literally just describes things all the time. So this notion of me, which is nothing but thoughts, it’s just me is nothing but a pattern of thoughts that arises in the mind. Yeah, another way of saying it is, what me is his mind. Okay, that that we have no control of it, that there’s just chatting away? That that’s the CEQA. That’s that say that seeking that that’s asking question, all of it arises in the mind all of it. So if you understand that, a thought, doesn’t and can’t actually experience anything? What’s it basing its story on? What’s it basing? What’s it? What’s it basing its narrative about the world and about personal self and so on? So what’s it basing that on?
Rick Archer: Well, the thought is an experience itself. So I don’t know how an experience could experience an experience. It’s it’s sort of it’s the object of experience. It’s not the experiencer
Terrence Stephens: there’s no one experiencing the thought, what we’re trying to do, okay, all I’m trying to do at the moment, is point out how the mind operates, where the meat comes from, and how it seems to come into existence. And then why this seeking continues, with all his knowledge, with all these understanding, there’s still a seeking, that’s happening. The reason the seeking is happening is because mind literally cannot experience this.
Rick Archer: Who the seeking is happening for whom? Mind? Not everybody’s mind. You mean all 8 billion of us are seeking is happening. So what you’re saying
Terrence Stephens: if seeking is occurring, yes. In settings, and in others, there is no seeking that is occurring. There, there is seeking that is occurring. Now the point there is, what is it that’s responsible for those thoughts? What is it that is responsible for those seeking thoughts? What’s responsible for that?
Rick Archer: I would say that it’s the natural tendency of the mind to seek a field of greater happiness. And there, it’s that’s what’s also responsible for the very evolution of the universe
Terrence Stephens: actually doesn’t, it doesn’t know happiness, right. But in the mind
Rick Archer: doesn’t, but it’s seeking it, you know, without Yeah, and usually, in most people’s cases, it’s seeking externally this car, this person, this this money, whatever the mind,
Terrence Stephens: the mind is seeking a concept of what it believes happiness to be right.
Rick Archer: And and most cases, it gets disappointed, because the things that goes after are, you know, transitory and not that fulfilling anyway. So it keeps keep seeking.
Terrence Stephens: So let’s retake it back. If indeed, there is only the absolute, if indeed there is only one. Then surely, that one, or that absolute, is responsible for everything, including every single solitary thought that arises in a person.
Rick Archer: So the absolute is doing stuff, it’s it’s creating thoughts? It’s, it’s the pulse is the pole has a it has an active functional role. You’re saying?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, of course. I’ve got seemingly, seemingly Yeah. Seemingly, yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s a wreck. At the end of the day, it’s all a dream. At the end of the day, yep. Everything that arises in a person’s mind. The seeming person is not responsible for that. And what what also arises in the mind, is the seeming person. Yeah. So we think that it’s me, that’s going to find enlightenment, it’s me, that’s going to wake up from the drain. My what, indeed, what happens is your wake up to the dream, not from it, is a huge, huge difference between both those those points. So the question then must arise? Who will What is it then that awakens? What is the what is it that awakens? If there’s no personal self there? If there is no me there? What is it that awakens? And from what?
Rick Archer: Well, you know, I mean, people have been pondering this question for 1000s of years. And the traditional answer, if we refer to the Bhagavad Gita, for instance, is that the self realizes itself by the self by itself, it’s not some person who realizes it, which is an absurdity. If you consider what the person it supposedly is, and what the self is, it’s kind of like, I don’t know, pulling yourself up by your own bootstraps or something. You know, the self wakes up to itself. And one way of looking at it is the person finally gets out of the way to the extent that the self is no longer occluded by, you know, sensory inputs and so on. Kind of like, you could say, you know, the sun is overshadowed by clouds. And then, you know, the sun never was never actually overshadowed. It’s shining brightly, whether there’s clouds or not, but from sort of a dualistic perspective, it seems to be overshadowed by the clouds, when the clouds finally dissipate. This. Analogies have their limitations. But, you know, the oh, I’ve always been, this has always been the case. I just thought there was this overshadowing, but that in itself was an illusion.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Yeah. And that another way, perhaps looking at this is there’s one primal doer. Yeah. And I’m not talking about God, when I say that, that sitting back pulling the strings and deciding what’s going to happen before it happens and restructuring, and so on. So
Rick Archer: that would be a dualistic, a puppeteer that’s removed from it all you know
Terrence Stephens: that correct. Not correct. The intelligence is so magnificent. That what is actually happening is just bursting into existence right now. Yeah. Yeah. Like the intelligence My God, like what’s like, which brings us to time? Is there such a thing as time? Is there such a thing as time,
Rick Archer: we could say like, it’s a concept that we use to measure eternity.
Terrence Stephens: It’s totally a concept because in our in our absolute direct in our direct experience with time, in our direct experience, yeah. And also, you know, I sometimes say, you know, archaeologists will find dinosaur bones and I go, Oh, these are 260 million year old dinosaur bones. Wow, check those. No, those dinosaur bones bursting into existence right now. They’re brand new, and fresh. Right now. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Okay, I’m gonna call you on this one. But they are. And I agree. And, and I, I marvel at this all the time, I, you know, I go walking in the woods every day, as I told you, and I just sort of appreciate the spontaneous bursting forth of creativity that’s in every leaf and every bug and every pebble. And, you know, but in a relative sense, and we can refer to the relative sense as long as we do so in a kind of a conditional way. And not in not in our way.
Terrence Stephens: Part implies time it in it in it will imply, but there isn’t any time.
Rick Archer: Well look at look at it from Einstein’s perspective. Okay, we look at the Andromeda Galaxy, it has taken what is it? 2 million years for the light to arrive to us from the Andromeda Galaxy. Now, just from from a human perspective, now, look at it from the perspective of a photon, which is what the light is, that’s coming from the Andromeda Galaxy, it’s traveling at the speed of light, and at the speed of light time has completely collapsed. The photon is here instantaneously, if you could ride on the photon, so to speak. And it seems to me that space also collapses if time collapses. So, you know, there, and he figured that all out mathematically, and you know, unfolded it beautifully.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. And and is any of it actually true. In the relative sense, we go, yeah, yeah, that makes sense. And that’s true. And we can measure it, and, and so on and so forth. But when you when you step out of that, then one? Yeah, no, no. And all I’m saying is, when you step out of mind, then what is experienced?
Rick Archer: Nothing. I would say if you’re if there’s no mind functioning whatsoever, how could there be experience?
Terrence Stephens: Maybe there is,
Rick Archer: is there what like what give me example.
Terrence Stephens: It’s still experience. There’s still experiencing happening all the time. I think we’re
Rick Archer: just pulling it right. Right now you and I are having experience we’re talking to each other. We’re using our eyes and ears primarily, where eyes and ears are being used to register sight and sound right. And eyes. And it’s just eyes and ears all by themselves doing this.
Terrence Stephens: Don’t need mind. Sorry. Don’t you don’t? You don’t make the experience
Rick Archer: better defined mind? Okay,
Terrence Stephens: okay. When I say mind, I’m not talking about universal mind. I’m talking about personal mind, individual mind. Individual mind. Yeah. It’s not needed.
Rick Archer: What if what if it were what if it were there? I mean, are you saying nobody uses mine or just an enlightened person? Doesn’t? Nobody uses mind? There’s nobody there. So there is no such thing as mine, then you’re saying? Correct. Okay, there it is mine. How you define it?
Terrence Stephens: It’s purely an appearance.
Rick Archer: And why is the mind and appearance but the visual input is not an appearance or is that an appearance too? So that’s also an appearance, so everything is an appearance? Of course it is. Yeah. Okay. So nothing exists. Everything is an appearance.
Terrence Stephens: Oh, no, no, no, no, no, not nothing. No, not nothing exists. Okay. No, absolutely not. Nothing exists. No thing exists. But this that’s nothing that people refer to is everything. Yeah, okay. There’s not that there’s no such thing as nothing. That’s, that’s just so ridiculous.
Rick Archer: So, you have a red shirt on? Does does it exist? Yeah. Okay,
Terrence Stephens: but but only as far as mind is concerned. In the absence of mind. Is there a red shirt?
Rick Archer: Okay, so then we must, must both have a mind because we both see a red shirt.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, that’s the consciousness part. That’s mine. That’s the that appears. To be, that’s the consciousness, the appearance of in the awareness, there is no apparent appearance of until consciousness arrives, which is if you live the self conscious part of the Absolute, it’s the absolute that’s experiencing everything, not a person, the person that the person is a dreamed up character that arises in the mind of the seeming the seeming person or the seeming individual that needs to be seen. Sure.
Rick Archer: Which when you’re saying that, that, okay, so you’re boiling everything down to its essence and saying that all of everything, the whole universe, red shirts, and all are just an a, an appearance, that is nothing other than the absolute kind of maybe interacting with itself or something and giving rise to appearances, which ultimately have no reality by putting words in your mouth, but are those
Terrence Stephens: No you’re not. There is only one reality. So to say to say that there’s no reality is still incorrect, but we’re trying to no no
Rick Archer: reality No, no, no relative reality that all relative realities are just correct appearances, which have no ultimate substance or no ultimate. No, yep.
Terrence Stephens: Yep, I stand corrected. That’s wrong. Okay, that’s wrong. Yeah. It all arises in mind. And when I say that, I’m, I’m talking about the seeming person. Yeah, it all it all arises in the seeming person’s mind. Now, that’s a contradiction in terms because there’s no person there that has a mind it all right. Like, that’s the point that I was giving you earlier, Rick, you know, when total amnesia is experienced, where does the personal person go?
Rick Archer: How about when death is experienced? Whereas the personal person go?
Terrence Stephens: What’s that? Death?
Rick Archer: You know, let’s say your body dies. What happens? Personal person
Terrence Stephens: dissolves. Personal person is nothing but a product of mind.
Rick Archer: So not agree with the notion of reincarnation, I suppose. Of course now. Oh, yeah. I told you do want to argue about that.
Terrence Stephens: Anytime you’re like,
Rick Archer: This is a good time.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Incarnation. Yeah, absolutely. Reincarnation?
Rick Archer: Yeah. Here’s the deal. Yeah. I agree with I kind of agree with everything you’re saying but they’re we’re just taking different we put different spins on it. I am still an adherent to this, you know, multi dimensional thing, even if, even if the the relative dimensions are, are just transactional reality and not ultimately real like the pots that are really only clay, but in a relative sense. They they have a relative existence. That and that’s where the word Leisha video comes in. In Vedanta, we have a Harka Satyam comes in in Vedanta. And that’s why perhaps Nisargadatta said, you know, what you call identity remains, it enables me to become a person when required. So And here’s another example you could say on one cent in one level that nothing ever existed. I just recently took a course from Swami syrupy Ananda of the Vedanta society and the Manduka Punisher go to part its commentary on it. And he argues very convincingly go to part of does that creation never happened, the whole sense of there being any creation whatsoever is mistake of the intellect. Nothing ever happened. And but then finally, at the end of the whole thing, he said, but you actually have to make a concession with relativity in order to live you know, because we do make a concession with relativity whenever we do anything. He can’t if you just absolved into the outer is resolved into the absolute with nothing but that there would be no living. So on one and that’s true on one level, there is no universe nothing ever happened. On on a more manifest level. You could say, it’s all God. It’s all divine. Everything is perfect all in one as well and wisely put, no one is doing anything. It’s all the divine play. On a more manifest level, you could say, there are starving children in Africa, there’s a pandemic going on. There’s there’s relative problems. You can’t just dismiss them as a loser and ignore them. Something should be done about them. So just banged my microphone. So there’s this kind of three level and there actually are Sanskrit names for these levels. This is Traditional knowledge there’s a three level thing and so I’m just suggesting that enlightenment or awakening is more of a multi dimensional arrangement. It’s in which you acknowledge the relative unreality of these more manifest levels. But and so you couldn’t you can truthfully say that nothing ever happened. But you’ve somehow learned to play the play as Rupert spire Oh, it says, you know, the guy who plays King Lear in the play. He knows he’s not King Lear. It but he’s, he’s playing that part for the sake of the play.
Terrence Stephens: The part is being played. Yes. Not to say that. There’s not a person playing the part. The part is being played. I still when somebody says you’re Terry Terrence. I still turn. Yeah, sure. I still walk out my front door. And there’s my car over there. Yeah, across the road. Yeah. Yep. Still there.
Rick Archer: If you drive it 100 miles an hour, the cop pulls you over. You don’t say I’m sorry. I wasn’t doing this. There’s nobody doing driving this car. You’ll get hauled off to something.
Terrence Stephens: Wouldn’t it be great if we could say that? So
Rick Archer: I’m talking more than I usually talk, but I have a feeling that we’re no I
Terrence Stephens: like it. I like it, actually. But we’re actually engaged and
Rick Archer: my wife is out of the room. Otherwise, she’d be handing me not saying you’re talking.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, look. That’s okay, I got something for you. It stemmed from reincarnation, and
Rick Archer: let’s come back to that the reincarnation thing. And but I want to throw in one other thing at Yeah. Which is, like, I quote The Gita a lot, because I like to get I’ve read it a lot of times. But um, there, there are a whole section of verses of the Gita where it says just what you’ve been saying. It says, You do not act at all, you know, the Gunas of nature doing the action or God’s doing the action or something rather, but it’s it’s you know, you do not sit, you do not stand, you’re not walking that talk. And this is the perspective of a realized person that I am, I do not act at all. But then, in other verses in the same book, maybe even the same chapter, you know, Christian saying to Arjuna, get off your butt, you know, you have something you need to do here. And you know, you have control over action alone, never over it’s fruits. And so I think that’s just kind of speaks to, again, go ahead.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, we think are generally speaking to a person. If there is no if there is no person, what’s been spoken to. Let me give you an example. Let’s just say you and I are in the same room. And you’re asleep.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Laying on Australia on the ARIA. No, that was
Terrence Stephens: no problem. Yeah. You’re, you’re asleep on the couch, right? Yeah. And I’m awake. I happen to just be sitting sitting there in the room reading a book or whatever yet, but I’m awake. And you’re clearly asleep. And I start to see you thrashing around
Rick Archer: having a dream or something. happen, not
Terrence Stephens: not a good dream, right? Because you’re thrashing around, you’re screaming out, and it sounds like this terror in your voice and so on. Yeah. Now, I could do one or two things I can just get there doesn’t matter. It’s just a drain. And you’ll eventually wake up from it won’t matter. Yeah. As soon as he wakes up from it, he’ll realize it was a dream and it’s gone. Yeah. Or I could go over and gently start whispering in your ear. Rick, Rick, Rick. Rick, wake up. You have in the dream rig. Wake up. Yeah. Who am I speaking to? Am I speaking to the dream character in the dream?
Rick Archer: Actually, I think you’re speaking to something more fundamental than the dream character.
Terrence Stephens: Absolutely. Yeah. Which is, yeah. Which is what this teaching is about. We’re not, you know. Bob, Bob’s good as a beautiful way of putting it. He says, I’m not speaking to any mind. I’m not speaking to anybody. I’m speaking to that. I Am that I Am. Yeah, so we’re getting you know, we, you know, by engage with people,
Rick Archer: yeah. So he’s speaking to it, and therefore, and he has that, so therefore, it’s speaking to itself.
Terrence Stephens: Correct. Yeah. And hearing itself, right. And speaking to itself. Yeah. Yeah. So if you go back to that dream analogy that I just used, yeah. Let’s also Just assume that in the dream the dream character in the dream now let’s keep in mind your body is just lying on the sofa asleep, right? But in the dream,
Rick Archer: I’m being chased by a lion or something.
Terrence Stephens: No, no Rick’s off doing this satsang and that Satsang and doing this course that tagine, reading this book and accumulating all this knowledge about spirituality about awakening about reencounter, whatever it is, yeah, it’s accumulating all this stuff in the dream. Yeah. Then you wake up. So the dreamed character is the sepia. Is that supposed seeker on awakening, on awakening? All of that stuff that that dream character was doing to get a result? vanishes. Absolutely seen for what it was a dream dream character, oh, my God. And nothing in that dream ever actually happened? Nothing. None of it ever actually. happened? Six. Okay, so the so called waking dream, the exact same thing is happening. So when I’m communicating, I’m not talking to the seeming person. Why would I waste my time? It’s a dream. Why would I waste my time? So when I’m whispering in your ear when you’re asleep? I’m not trying to wake up the dream character in the dream, trying to wake up who you are, who you actually are. Yeah. In your in your direct experience. Because upon awakening, the dream is seen for what it is. Yeah, a dream. And all the anger and all the angst and pain and suffering and anxiety and all that stuff that seekers go through. Dissolves when you wake up on the sofa I’m talking about? Yeah, when you wake up, oh.
Rick Archer: And the saga data was really good at that, you know, he said, you know, here’s a quote, he said, My guru told me that I am power Brahman, and nothing else. I have accepted that with great conviction. And therefore whatever other things appear seem to be palpably false. If the Guru’s word or words are accepted with total conviction, our entire destiny, our entire life will be transformed.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, everything, everything changes. And yet, nothing else. Like that the dream character is seen for what it is or was. It’s literally it was literally a dream character, literally. And there’s no dreamer here. Dreaming the dreamed character. The so called Dream a hit is the dream character. Yeah, yeah. Which brings, which brings me back to what I was saying to you earlier. Okay. So what’s responsible for the dream? Because it seems to be a dream happening. There seems to be thoughts happening. This there seems to be a thought that arises here as a personal self. I am, and I’m still seeking and I’m still searching and I’m, and I’m still inquiring, even that statement is not coming from a person. Would that be any different that statement for any of the other thoughts that arise in mind? Just happens,
Rick Archer: yeah. But traditionally, teachers have made statements like that. And then in the next breath, they’ve have reminded students that they have responsibility for their actions, their karmic consequences, you know, for, for doing things or not doing things. That the sort of the absolute reality does not negate or obviate relative considerations.
Terrence Stephens: Because concessions concessions to happen, yeah, concession seem to have
Rick Archer: and they have to for the sake of practical living. Yeah, you’re probably aware that some Neo Advaita folks have actually used this absolute view as a cop out for doing all kinds of reprehensible things and you know, saying well, it’s all a dream and all there is no doer and you know, that kind of stuff. So that kind of teaching can be misused.
Terrence Stephens: I totally agree. There’s not there’s no mean so I can do anything. Yeah, I can. I can sleep
Rick Archer: with all these women or rip off this money or you know, whatever. And,
Terrence Stephens: and who would be doing that, right? No, do it? No, it would still be the man
Rick Archer: Yeah, you’re right. I would be but yeah, sometimes this has been used as an alibi for.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. When? When? Yeah. When people just have an intellectual understanding of it. Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely. A direct a direct understanding. You can’t hurt others. You are others. And you’d have to be a masochist. And I don’t believe that the the absolute is a masochist. Yeah. It’s love. You can’t. You can’t harm others. You can’t. It’s not
Rick Archer: possible. Yeah. Like yeah, as before, like, who am I? Or what? How do you, I forget how you put it. But I was reminded of Jesus saying, you know, love your neighbor as yourself. And the only way to really do that is to, ultimately is to realize that the neighbor is yourself. Yep. Yeah. And then there’s going to be this as much love for them as you would have, you know, for your suppose itself,
Terrence Stephens: then then there is just love.
Rick Archer: Yeah, it wouldn’t hurt them any more than you would stab your own hand or something,
Terrence Stephens: then there is just no. Yeah, but but there’s a big difference between that kind of love. And, and the love that we think we experience as a personal person right. Now agreed. The personal the personal love that the personal person believes it’s experiencing is always conditional. It’s always conditional. Yeah. The absolute love is absolutely non conditional. Now, you know, like, how does the mind get its head around that? A personal mind? I’m talking about? How does it it’s like trying to get a tail around infinity. Or it’s like trying to get its head around. There’s no such thing as time. Yeah. It because it operates journalistically, it can’t, because mind operates journalistically. It literally comes. There’s got to be a beginning and an end. In terms of infinity. The mind will say can’t
Rick Archer: know there does you saying there has to be infinity have a beginning and end?
Terrence Stephens: In terms of mind? Yeah, it can’t fathom no beginning and no end.
Rick Archer: I see. I see. Yeah.
Terrence Stephens: Because it because it operates realistically. Yep. Same with love. Yeah. Love is conditional.
Rick Archer: I’ll love you. If, right. If you’re if you’ve done whatever.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, of course, but if you don’t, blah, blah, blah. Yeah. You know, it’s like, yeah, so this love that I’m talking about is not split. It’s not dualistic. Before, it’s unconditional.
Rick Archer: Yeah, there was this woman named Edie hilason, who was in a concentration camp in Poland, I believe. And she relator at some point, somehow, her writings got out. I don’t know if she died in the camp or not. But she was definitely in some very, you know, awakened state. And she could not, not love her persecutors. You know, it was just sort of not within her capacity. And it was and it was very inspiring for some of the other inmates in the in the concentration camp. But that, you know, it’s it’s rare, but it’s possible.
Terrence Stephens: Totally not, you know, I’d hate to imagine. I could only imagine me, but you know, so called human beings there are walking around on planet that are awake, and no one knows about it. Yeah. They don’t even know about it. Could be good. But like, we don’t know, you know, yeah. I’ve heard stories. I’ve heard stories like that. Myself. Right. But, you know, in terms of what I constantly try and do is bring people back to the absolute direct experience right here right now.
Rick Archer: Yeah, that’s a good thing to do. Okay,
Terrence Stephens: so, so, so, in that I attempt to get people to experience, if you like, their own sense of consciousness. I sometimes throw in the word awareness to probably show them you know, but let’s just say their own sense of consciousness or their own sense of being. People have difficulty with that. A lot of people have difficulty with that. But those that don’t, yeah, that kind of are able to, you know, realize that they are the awaring that I often referred to as the NG you know, once if I can get a person seeming person there and ask him this really direct question. Providing there’s a direct experience of consciousness. Usually, when I put the first thing that usually happens when a person arrives, their mind stops. There’s no thought it’s like a pause that occurs, then I ask them the question, in that experience, is it divided? Is it split? Is it divided? And in one’s direct experience of that, Rick, it’s you discover it is not divided. It is not to it is not split. It is not dualistic. So, at best, yeah. I’ll try and point to or get somebody to arrive there and experience that. And have them realize, yeah, it’s not split. It’s not divided. It’s not not dualistic. In their direct experience. Yeah. Now it can be difficult. Because most people when I try and take them there will take the stance. Yes. I’m aware of. Yes. I’m conscious of say, no, no, no, no, that’s, that’s closer than that. It’s much, much closer. I’m not talking about being aware of not talking about being conscious of, I’m talking about being consciousness and awareness itself. And that and the direct experience of that. And in the direct experience of that, everything goes quiet. There’s an absence of me. There’s an absence, which, which really, is just an absence of thought. Literally, so mine goes quiet. Yeah. And then question that. Is it divided by go? Not? Is it split or go? Oh, okay, great. What’s the name of this teaching? Okay. Laundry duality. There it is, you’ve arrived. And then the mind will kick in again. Right. But at least it’s giving them a path away home glimpse. It’s a way home. Yeah. Yeah. And it’s, it’s, it becomes then the direct experience. And all the lights go on. Yeah.
Rick Archer: And as you know, it can take a while for it to become an abiding direct experience, as it did with you, as it did with Nisargadatta. For that matter, you know, he was about three years or so.
Terrence Stephens: And while it was it was different for me. I had an intellectual understanding of this for years, decades, in fact, yeah. Yeah. And I got to the point of hiding the intellectual understanding. I got, I got to the point of even telling myself, this non duality stuff, What a crock of shit. Yeah, I did. Yeah. And I kind of wiped out everything with that. Yes. Is when you’re already
Rick Archer: with Bob or before Bob.
Terrence Stephens: This was in between Bob. So I saw. So I met Bob around the age of 2526 years of age. Then, you know, around about 8990 Something like that. I went my own way. Just went off into life and was living life. Yeah. Wasn’t teaching wasn’t doing anything, you know. But but, you know, head awakening occurred in that that period of time that I spent with Bob No, I thought it had I thought it had. Yeah. And then off, I went into the world. And, you know, I, you know, over a couple of decades, I just suffered. What happened was that sense of me, the idea of me, came back slowly. episodes, I was so slow, I didn’t kind of notice it really happening, you know, and then I just started experiencing a lot of internal suffering. I still had enough sense to know. It’s, this is all just mind stuff. None of its real.
Rick Archer: That idea didn’t save you from the suffering. It
Terrence Stephens: did not save me from the string at all right. In fact, in fact, that made it worse,
Rick Archer: which is, which is a good thing to emphasize. Because you know, you and I are banding about a bunch of ideas here and maybe it’s this way, maybe It’s that way. But all of this is words and talk and ultimately, it has to be, you know, rooted in very deep direct experience. Yeah, living.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. So I, I reached a point everything around me seemed to start collapsing. You know, got divorced. family disowned me. I had a son that disowned me. And it’s because I kind of reached such a state of bleakness, I guess you’d call it, you know, just dark, I was just so sucked in to self, you know? I would absolutely not available for anybody. I would try and act like I was. But the truth is, I wasn’t, you know, and why was I acting like I was? Well, part of me would say, because it’s the right thing to do. And another part of me would say, because I want them to love me. You know? So, you know, in the end, everything just completely, completely collapse. And I found myself purely, absolutely alone. And I mean, that literally, alone. Yeah, I didn’t feel like there was anybody I could go into, you know, I’d seen therapists and psychologists and stuff, and I’d have a few sessions with them. And I just go, Oh, my God, you know, they’re in a story themselves, like what you know. And then eventually, I was sitting at home, and in absolute desperation. And this is somebody but this came out, came out of the mouth of somebody that that had no belief whatsoever in in an intervention as God. Not no belief, right. But at a pure desperation, what came out of my mouth, and I remember saying it vocally loudly. I remember sitting there just so desperate, just so anyway, what came out of my mouth was either take me or save me. But for God’s sake, don’t leave me sitting here like this is a wake me up or kill me. Please don’t leave me sitting here like this. Yeah. And I sat there, my eyes were closed and sat there for a moment, and I kind of
Rick Archer: any Thunderbolts coming,
Terrence Stephens: nothing happened. Nothing happened. Right. So what happened? I was left sitting like this. Yeah. But that was like my, you know, of all the things that I would have thrown out there to try and save me, I wouldn’t have thought that would have been the last thing. You know, just because I had, you know, intervention is God is absurd. And I still know that that’s not true. But that’s what came out. And in there. That was amazing. I shared it with Bob later, he kind of corrected me on it, which was great. In that, all of a sudden, and it happened suddenly. All of a sudden, everything went quiet. What I mean by everything went quiet mind went quiet. Yeah. What arose was, you know what? I just don’t care anymore. It’s okay. So, as it as everything is, it’s okay. I don’t care anymore. Because it’s clear. I can’t do anything, no matter how hard I try, no matter what I do. So you know, sometimes referred to that as like, a complete and absolute surrender. That occurred, and it just happened. It literally just happened throughout this thing is seeming prayer on and everything went quiet. And the the the seeking the fighting, the wanting was over. It was literally over. Then I and I experienced just absolute silence and absolute. No thoughts. Zero was going on. And for whatever reason, it’s stayed that way for just short, just shy of three months. Just nothing going on. I pulled up a chair, put it on my front veranda. I just remember sitting on the chair, my front veranda. And all I did was just look at the sky. No anchor points, just a sky. You know what I mean? Every now and then clouds go by, but there was no attachment. It was just vastness was kind of kind of
Rick Archer: reminds me of Eckhart Tolle is awakened you’ve ever read his his book? No, I haven’t. No, yeah, he was like at his wit’s end. And, you know, he’s just said, I don’t know, he might have been suicidal, but he just said, I can’t live with myself anymore. And, and he said, Wait a minute, are there two of me, like, Who is this self with whom I can’t live. And then he went to bed, and he woke up in the morning and the world was different. It was just totally different. And for a couple of years, he basically sat on a park bench and looked at the squirrels. And then eventually, he got things going again. But yeah, there’s there’s definitely a phenomenon or a syndrome or whatever, of reaching the end of your rope and getting to the point where you realize deeply viscerally that you are not able to do it. And there’s a kind of a surrender that happens there. And that can that can facilitate a really deep shift.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. And, you know, one of the one of the points of suffering. Prior to that was the understanding. I can’t get this. I can’t do this. Yeah. If it’s gonna happen, it’s just going to happen. Yeah. So then what I did with that understanding, I took the stance, okay. I’m just gonna wait. Oh, my God, there’s still a me there waiting. Right. But oh, my God, I waited for years, Rick, years, and years, and I just felt like, I was a dry leaf being kind of blown around in the wind. And that was, that was kind of representing my life, never known where I was going to end up or what was going to happen, you know, but then get getting back to post. Everything went quiet. It was like, like there’s, and even talking about this. I talk about it in hindsight, because in that, I’m going to call it three month period, in that three month period, there was nothing happening. So around about the three month period, where I noticed, my mind started to stir again, it literally just started to stir. And I remember I got looked over to the right, and I saw this tree. And obviously it’s been there for like 30 years. Because the size of it. And I remember, the gaze just mind started to spin I remember looking over to this tree, which I passed and walked under, I don’t know, few 1000 times. I remember looking over this tree and seeing it for the first time I mean, that literally seeing it for the first time. Yeah, prior to that I saw the tree through the mind right now, you know, it’s literally just there was just sagging. Yeah, of the tree being like, you know, I remember looking over to the left, I remember as a hedge, I looked at that and just just the the detail and the exquisiteness of everything and even my concrete driveway, I looked at that, that blew me away. Yeah, I looked at onto the road, and there’s a black bitumen road there and I went, ah, like, everything, just everything just opened up. And I don’t know, it’s, it’s like, all of the senses all opened up at the same time and everything was being experienced. At the same time. If you try and do that with a me, what we’ll do is we’ll shift from one sense to the other. And then the right on the sense, seeing or hearing or tasting water. That’s the That’s what that’s, that’s that experience of being have kind of been blown open, if you like, all of the all of the senses become active, all at one time and are all being experienced at the one time at the same time. You know, then, you know, gradually the mind started to stir and it started to stir, you know, and, you know, I was able to kind of start planning things and, you know, but that was just happening. I didn’t ask the mind to start stirring it just Data disturbed. Yeah. And with that wasn’t that wasn’t
Rick Archer: a problem, right? It didn’t suck you back into your previous state or anything
Terrence Stephens: was not a problem because there was the absence of the personal me thoughts, right, that that that disappeared.
Rick Archer: So you just acknowledge that you do have a mind. But it’s just it doesn’t define or confine you the way it used to.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Okay. Yeah. All right. I’ll let you have that.
Rick Archer: Then it’s a function. It’s a tool. It’s a it’s like breathing or, you know, it’s just one of our faculties that it’s the sixth sense. Yeah. This is
Terrence Stephens: hearing tasting, touching, smelling thinking. And the sixth sense is the creative sense. Create. Amazing,
Rick Archer: sure create the, you know, the whole Vedic tradition has this all broken down. There’s intellect booty, there’s Manas mind, there the Andrea’s, which are the senses. And you know, there’s this whole sort of hierarchy of functions within the individual structure. And then, of course, the Atman, or the universal consciousness underlying them all. And they all just they can function together and a harmonious whole realization of the atman doesn’t obliterate the other functions by any means.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Yeah. Then I then what occurred? What was amazing. You know, keep in mind that prior to this, prior to that three months stint, or prior to me, you know, throwing out that nonsensical prayer. Prior to that my mind, you know, was taken up with 99%, probably 100% main thoughts. Yeah. Was it was all about me. Yep. And then, when that can, like, if you can imagine that completely stopping the space. in mind, if you like, the space, then then there were a ton of thoughts that came in, almost like was being downloaded. And what came up with the underlying theme of it was, Oh, my God, this is so simple. This is so incredibly simple. How we miss it is staggering. It’s staggering how we miss this. And so what kept coming up on me was, there’s got to be a better way of communicating this. There’s got to be a better way of communicating this. Yeah. And, and then with that, came all these pointers, and, you know, that just kind of so that, that was the only thinking that was going on. And it was literally written like it was being downloaded.
Rick Archer: That is so cool. I really love that story. Then I keep going.
Terrence Stephens: Sorry, I haven’t seen Bob for 20 years. Uh huh. Yeah. And thought came to mind. I’ll go on, hopping on one of Bob’s groups haven’t seen him for 20 years. You know what I mean? Is he? Where is he? Yeah, he’s only about 10 K’s from where I live 666 miles from earlier. So that came to mind, you know. And then, interestingly enough, the next thing that came to mind was thinking that that blurb that you read out, Rick at the beginning. It highlighted one of the facts that I was sexually abused when I was a kid. And up until you know, I’m sitting on my front veranda. Up until then. Yeah. The inner dialogue that was going on was I was a victim of that. Yeah. And there was a perpetrator. Yeah. And I’d had you can imagine, Rick Yeah, I’d had lots of counseling around it and trying to resolve it. Put it all in perspective, you know, stop blaming myself all that stuff. Yep. Which was nice. But the truth of the matter is, didn’t seem to matter how much counseling I had, when the sometimes a thought would arise in my mind. If I saw this guy walking down the street. Yeah. Yeah, and I went, doesn’t matter what amount of counseling you get it. I’m not over it. Yeah, it’s not it’s not resolved. I would want to beat him up if I was only like 12 years old when it occurred. The most remarkable thing happened. He came to mind. And for the first time in my life, what I experienced was, oh my god, I wonder what he’s been living with all this time. I wonder if at any point, he’s had this fear of me one day turning up on his front door and knocking on his door and standing there with a shotgun or whatever, and blown him away, whatever, right. So, for the first time, I experienced absence of me, I was okay. All of a sudden, I’m okay. But he came to mind and probably because he was, you know, a part of my inner profound inner dialogue for a long time since I was 12 years old, you know, that in a way, you know, shaped me. Yeah. So that was quite a profound thing. Next thing, you know, I’m observing all this happening, right? Next thing, you know, and I tracked him down. I worked out where he lived. And then I found myself getting in the car and starting the car and driving off the air, and I pull up out the front, and
Rick Archer: I’ve got a shotgun. And no, I’m just kidding.
Terrence Stephens: I know I woke up to the front door, knock on the door. Lo and behold, the door opens and there is now remember, it was a long, long, long time ago. So he had no idea who I was. Yeah, I was a 12 year old the last time he saw me and so now I’m an adult. And, and I very, very, very gently, I found that I was just very, very gently introducing myself and trying to, you know, gently ease into his memory. Yeah, just named a few things that you were once a manager of blur, and you also did blur and then all of a sudden, I might go into the dialogue that I had, but all of a sudden, it dawned on him who I was. Yeah. And I saw absolute terror. arise in this person. Yeah. Yeah, it was, I would say, pushing at is about Yeah. Yeah. By the time I’m standing in as an adult. And I just saw him shutter and I just saw the fear. Yeah. And then, then then the next thing that occurred was, ah, there it is. That’s what he’s been experiencing. All this time. Yeah. There it is, you know, so just very gently and very lovingly, a short him I’m totally okay. I’m ABS because I was split, right. And I was just very, very loving and very kind and I wanted him to be okay.
Rick Archer: Yeah. When it’s like, forgive him and let him.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, yeah, I wanted him to be okay. You know, and to do that, he needed to say I was okay. Yeah. And there’s no grudges and said, Look, you won’t see me again. And I hope you have a wonderful life. You know, all human beings make mistakes. It’s okay. Yeah, it’s okay. You know, I’m telling you, I’m okay. And he didn’t say anything. Like he was just like a deer caught in the headlights. And
Rick Archer: you may not have been the only person he did this to
Terrence Stephens: was, according to the police, I was the only person. Well, nobody else had come forward anyway.
Rick Archer: I see. So we maybe come forward when you were 12? Or what? No,
Terrence Stephens: no, not at all. I was in my mid 30s. I come for Yeah, yeah. And the police did a check. And there was no, no one else that come forward. Right. Who knows? I don’t know. wasn’t about that anymore. Yeah. Then I can’t say what I said. And I was warm and kind and, you know, not turned to walk away. So I had my back to him. And then this really beautiful soft boys. And I barely heard it, but I heard it. He said I’m sorry. And I’ll just turn and look back and I lit up you know? Yeah. It’s okay. Let it go. I’m okay. Look, I mean, look, you know, and then with that, I turned and walked off and got in my car. And that was kind of like the only thing that that seemed to be needed to be handled from my past story, if you like, everything else was I didn’t have to do anything or say anything, even with family, family members. I just needed to show up. I just needed to turn up and they just saw this massive transformation. That was good enough for them.
Rick Archer: Yeah. That’s really sweet. That’s a great story.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Then I got to Bob and hadn’t seen him for 20 years and I went through and told him what happened. You know, I just I said, I just reached a point where I don’t care anymore. And he said, No, no, no. Let’s rephrase that. He said, You reached a point of becoming care free. And I went, yep, that’s a much good fireproofing. Yeah, just what happened?
Rick Archer: Cuz you were not doing the not caring it was just care had been lifted from you. Yeah. Yeah. Is that wasn’t something you did really
Terrence Stephens: know. Just happened? Yeah. Like when I saying I don’t care kind of implies the person that’s made a decision. I’m not gonna care. No, that’s not what it was right. But I didn’t I didn’t know how to how to verbalize it until Bob corrected me on it. I went Yes, that’s it. That’s great freight just free. I don’t know why I went into all that story. But anyway, I went into That’s a great
Rick Archer: story. I’m glad you did. It got me to shut up for a while. And I think it was really inspiring, actually. Yeah, I mean, people like these awakening stories, not that it’s going to be the same for anybody else. Although there are certain similarities that come up again and again, but and one of those similarities is, you know, again, reaching sort of the end of the road reaching the, the point at which like, bottoming out isn’t where, you know, we should receive the point of Help Me God, I can’t take another breath without some kind of break through.
Terrence Stephens: It seems to be that that he’s very common. Yeah. Even with, even with people that I work with, you know, the, the people that are really sit up and pay attention to Yeah, the ones that sign on fucked. Excuse My French, but just ones that saying, I, you know, there’s, they’re there, they’re at their wit’s end. Yeah, they’re the ones that that for whatever reason, energy comes up, I get energized, and I seem to go right there with the people that I’m fond of dealing with that, you know, any to non duality for a long time. And, you know, and, you know, their life seems to be kind of, okay. You know, there’s less of a tendency for I still get, I still communicate, but that, that that urgency, if you like, or that to really, really go there with them is not so strong. And I trust that it’s just what it is, you know?
Rick Archer: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Let me a couple of people have sent in questions. Let me let me ask these. One is from Tanya Williams, whom I think you’ve spoken with, because I’ve listened to your recordings. And that was a woman with a very strong New Zealand accent. Yep, yep. So here’s, put my glasses on so I can read this better. How do you know once and for all, that you are not an illusory me? doubts that there is no me neither what she doubts about that are appearing, although I cannot find me so she can’t find it. But she doubts that there isn’t. There isn’t one. There is an expectation that something will happen and then I will know the me has definitely dropped our doubts about there being a me resolved by abiding as, as I slash awareness,
Terrence Stephens: everything is resolved right there. Everything you know, I sometimes use the expression rig. If God comes knocking you better behind? Yeah, yep. Or another way of putting that if awakening is going to occur, you better be present, you better be here, in whatever form in a form that’s destroyed and just be here. So and, you know, that that the mind wants questions to that that the mind wants to know or that that the me has questions so that the domain wants to know, gets answered and resolved. Right here. It just comes in like like I was saying before, when I said done, all that stuff that’s kind of downloaded it, everything gets resolved or the knowing of the truth gets resolved and understood as a result of sitting here in a seeming nothing going on. Mind hates that. Eat it writes that, yeah. But in the seeming nothing happening when you’re in your absolute own direct experience of just abiding here. That happiness if you’re like, God, this is a concept anyway, that he in this if you like, opens up like a flower. It opens, it opens it opens, it opens it opens nodes, and everything gets resolved
Rick Archer: into one question that comes up to me with regard to Tanya’s question is that, you know, like I said earlier, Nisargadatta says, You know what, in his own experience, what you may call identity remains, it enables me to become a person when required. Love creates its own necessities even becoming a person. And maybe Tanya, and people like Tanya, are kind of expecting to be devoid of any sense of personhood or identity whatsoever. And since they still feel a sense of identity, as Nisargadatta said he did, they think that I’m not getting it, there’s something wrong here, because I still have this sense of identity. And the a, again, to my understanding, it’s a matter of proportion, there’s always going to be some remnant of sense of identity, in order to be able to function. But, you know, unlike most people in the world, for whom that sense of identity is the, all in all of their existence, and they don’t, they’re not aware of anything else, you know, your, for you. It’s like the tip of the iceberg. And there’s a lot more iceberg that you are appreciating and aware of. That is much more, you know, so it’s just, it’s just like we were saying earlier, kind of a faculty now, instead of the entirety of what you think yourself to be.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, so that the seeming identity that seemingly remains is just a thought pattern. Yeah, it’s not a person. It’s not an eye. It’s not an entity. It’s not a person, right?
Rick Archer: It’s a faint remains. You know, in Vedanta, they use the example of let’s say, you’re holding a big ball of butter in your hand. And it’s this greasy, big ball of butter, and then you throw it off. So you’re basically rid of the butter, but there’s sort of a greasy surface remaining on your palm.
Terrence Stephens: But, you know, the absolute knowing that it’s not a person. Yeah. It’s not a thing. It’s not an right. T has no location as such, it just arises. Like it always did, by the way. It always did. That’s, that’s what, that’s what always happened. Yeah. But with a much, much, much, much bigger story. Sure.
Rick Archer: It used to be a big predominant elephant room now. In mouse. Yeah, yeah.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. And often I find myself just sitting in my backyard. That’s one of my favorite places to be. And I just, I just can’t, I can pull up a chair and just sit there with nothing occurring. And before I know, four or five hours have gone by, wow. Then the mind might start to stir. Yeah, you know, it might, you know,
Rick Archer: I’m hungry, I need to pee, whatever, you know, something.
Terrence Stephens: Coffee, because then I just asked to stir again, you know, obviously, Bob used to talk about that, you know, he used to say, again, you know, kind of thing. He used to say that sometimes when when he would when that was occurring for him, sometimes he would say that he kind of felt like he had to kick the thoughts back into being like, you have to
Rick Archer: have some motivation or impetus. Yeah. Yeah.
Terrence Stephens: Like it kind of it was almost like he had to make it happen, you know? And, um, you know, I’m sure if you’re questioning him on that, he would say no, no, just happens, you know? Like, but you know, yeah, I know, Rick, when you and I finish here today.
Rick Archer: You’ve got to sit in the backyard for
Terrence Stephens: government myself a coffee because I finished that one. And I’ll just go and sit in. I generally have a look at the plants when I go out my backyard. Even though my app looked at them an hour and a half earlier. I just can’t help but look at them. Like every time I do. They’re brand new. Yes, like fresh
Rick Archer: freshness. That’s a nice thing, too. It’s like I was thinking before when you’re talking about how this, you began to see the tree and the road and the bushes and all as if for the first time. There’s then a verse in the Bible about sort of seeing through a glass darkly. And then it speaks of eventually the glass becoming clearer and oh, you see things for the first time. And then there’s this traditional understanding actually, that until the self is realized capitalist self, the absolute value is realized. There can’t really be any significant appreciation of the world around us because, you know, the the appreciator is not awake. And so the appreciation can’t be profound. But then it’s a natural sequence in a way for once an awakening occurs on that deep level for us. certain point for a refinement of the senses to begin to occur. And, and there’s actually said to be a very great range to which that refinement Can, can happen can take place, you might you may find in your own experience that it’s not over and that 10 years from now or whatever, it will be even more sublime than it is now.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, look, you know, what I do now is it just opens and opens and yeah, and then stuff gets downloaded. And, in fact,
Rick Archer: I wanted to give a quote from the saga data. I’m showing it on the screen right now. You can’t see it, but other people will. He said, he said, Forget I am that I realized so much more sense that it’s so much deeper.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Like it. Like, I mean, he even went through the process of, I think the three years just staying with the I am,
Rick Archer: yeah. And look at Rama, Rama had this big, you know, awakening when he was 16 or whatever. And then he went and spent the next decade or more in a cave, just, you know, kind of like, percolating her, you know, marinating or something. Before he came out before, like his mind probably kicked in, after all that, like years did. And he maybe he got a download and came down off the mountain and started actually speaking and teaching. Yeah, like
Terrence Stephens: it even. Even the I am that. That’s the first split. That’s the first Julia stick split. I am. becomes, you know, like, it’s a mild split, but it’s a split. Yeah, if you just stay with the I am not much of a problem. What’s wrong with I am only becomes a problem when we say I am Terry. Tarrant, so I am Rick. I’m whoever. And then it gets back to that. You know, if there’s nothing added to the I Am, the I Am is just a pointer. The I Am is a pointer to this that. Yeah, this consciousness, this awareness. That’s the experience in of that. Yeah. So even even the IAM has to be abandoned at some point. Yeah. Well, I got Rick, when I
Rick Archer: yeah, you can say maybe you can say that. Is this is more fundamental than Amneris. Yeah, it’d be a way of putting it.
Terrence Stephens: Yep. Yeah, I like that. Yeah. I like that. You know, it’s I remember, you know, which is, which is what I think caused, you know, this is gonna be a better way of explaining this. And what I think caused that was, you know, when, let’s just for argument’s sake, this is just an expression when all the lights came on. Yeah. The first thing I realized, the first thing I realized was everything that I’ve ever heard. Everything I’ve ever read. Anything that anybody has ever said about this. None of none of its true. Not one single solitary thing that I’ve heard or read is actually true.
Rick Archer: Is that the case? Or is it that your understanding didn’t actually grok what they were saying? Because they’re gonna say that Shankara and Rama and Nisargadatta. And all the rest didn’t say anything true, or just that you didn’t appreciate it? Really?
Terrence Stephens: Everything that they said everything that gets said is a pointer. It’s not the accuracy,
Rick Archer: of course, like the finger pointing at the moon thing.
Terrence Stephens: So none of it’s actually true.
Rick Archer: Sure, it’s just words. Yeah, I can write a 600 page book on mangoes, but it’s not like tasting a mango.
Terrence Stephens: Sadly. And that’s kind of like, ah, oh, my God. And then it was like, how does this get missed? How does the skip and then then I just got flooded. It’s got to be a bit of good. And now Yeah, I can be in the middle of having a conversation with you and I we have stuff coming out of my mouth, my God come from? That’s not. Yeah, that’s no good. You know what I mean. But I’ve had to kind of surrender to that also, which I’m sure all the other teachers do as well. You know, you just kind of surrender. You understand that the only tool you have is dualistic language. Yeah. And you go about communicating and pointing, however it is you’re going to communicate and point and that’s
Rick Archer: Yeah, and I think something deeper is communicated than just the words you know, the words are kind of a not a crutch. I’m trying to think of the right word. They’re just a tool. But they’re not the entire communication that’s taking place. You know, I Quick visit with Bob or whatever, there’s an energetic something rather going on. That’s no more than just the words He’s speaking. Yeah, for sure, saying, Well, I mean, take an extreme example somebody like Rama, you know, who just radiated this profound, you know, atmosphere of oneness. People would just sit in his presence. Sometimes he would speak sometimes he wouldn’t. But just the the mere proximity had this incredibly, you know, profound effect on people.
Terrence Stephens: And when I walked down the street, you know, all the flowers that in banners, I will pass on my you’ll open up.
Rick Archer: Actually, it’s Venus fly traps, and they all slammed shut. question came in, and I want to ask you, this is from Cheryl in Florida, it’s very brief question, but perhaps and you’ve already answered it somewhat, but maybe you can give it a crack. She said when I find the path to home, and I get there, then what?
Terrence Stephens: Sit there and do nothing. Be willing, or earnest enough to be able to trust in sitting there and doing nothing? And trusting that? Just sit there? Sit there. You know that like? That’s the best. Rick? Cheryl, was it Cheryl? From Florida? Sure. Yeah. That’s at best, where I’m trying to get people. Yeah. There. And then now, now, just sit there. Because I can’t tell you anything about this. I can’t. Now it’s time for it to just download itself if you like, but you need to sit there and be willing to sit there.
Rick Archer: Yeah. But I think there’s something more figurative about what you’re saying than literal, perhaps because Cheryl doesn’t need to just sit on her porch and neglect the kids or whatever, for three months. But she could be very busily engaged in her life. But there’s a deep sitting there that happens in the midst of that apparent busyness, wouldn’t you say?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, yes, I would say that. But I would also say the closer the closer. I’ll say it. So just do it myself. Go and say something. But that’s not it. But anyway. The closer you get to just this, the more important it is to have less distractions around you.
Rick Archer: Yeah. You don’t need to go to discos and you know, roller coaster rides and dial down excitation.
Terrence Stephens: Don’t hang with someone that’s that would ordinarily tricky. Yeah. Just for a moment. It’s not for me. It’s just for a moment. Yeah. So you’re just trying to create a space if you if you like, where mind is, is not triggered if possible. Yeah. And I know that can be extraordinarily difficult when people got busy lives, and so on and so forth. But there’s, there’s still plenty of time during the day. But there’s still
Rick Archer: but you know, give yourself some downtime. You’re saying? Yeah,
Terrence Stephens: yeah. Right. You know, there’s still it can still be the experiencing of this, if you like, whilst you’re looking after the kids. And you know, yeah, just we’ll just observe what was actually happening. Just, you know, Bob used to say get in the box seat.
Rick Archer: The bus rage.
Terrence Stephens: The best seat mouse witnessing is the boxes. Yes.
Rick Archer: Typical word. Yep. And just watch. Yeah,
Terrence Stephens: everything that is occurring, watch the body moving, which thoughts come up, what sounds coming out of your mouth? What sounds coming out of, you know, other people’s mouths, you know?
Rick Archer: And that is not you might agree with this. That’s not so much something you do. It’s a condition that you live. It’s not like, Okay, I’m watching. I’m watching. I’m watching. It’s not like this vigilant sort of activity that you have to do all day long. It becomes a natural way of functioning.
Terrence Stephens: It Yeah, well, it’s, it’s consciousness itself, or if you want to throw an awareness, but it’s consciousness itself, it just being conscious, not conscious of race being conscious. And I think that process is being aware of yet just watching the body and there’s the wearing of Yeah, but what it’s trying to highlight is the consciousness itself.
Rick Archer: I think one way of looking at it is that the nature of consciousness or awareness or awareness is that it is a field of silence. And if we’re engaged in activity, yet grounded in that field of silence, there’s a natural juxtaposition or a natural sort of dichotomy between this silence in which nothing is happening and then the dynamism in which you’re doing this and that and so it’s kind of like the silent depths of the ocean and turbulence of the waves are appreciated simultaneously. Whereas before it might have just been waves, waves waves with no appreciation or recourse to the depth.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, I look, I’d say the, the silence is awareness. In income in consciousness there is, you know, that’s where the appreciation happens. I think consciousness. Yeah. The the appreciation for Scott or a flower or, or whatever and sound is heard they’re seeing hearing tasting, touching is experienced there. Just,
Rick Archer: that’s nice. Yeah, in other words, you’re sort of functioning from that level, if we want to call it deep. I don’t know if that’s a good word. But you don’t have to. It sounds like, you know that word in the last day that they say in India. And it’s something like, you know, I forget how it literally translated, but something like the deepest aspect of me appreciates the deepest aspect of you. And that’s how we’re relating. And so I think that’s kind of what you’re saying here about flowers and other things. We’re, we’re kind of relating to them, rather than on the surface levels of our existences at this the deepest level, which actually is this is one, you know, we’re one with the flower and everything else at that level. And so you really appreciate it.
Terrence Stephens: There’s absolute knowing that yeah, and consciousness is the absolute knowing of what what’s actually happening. But there’s also the knowing of the game of the show of the seeming Terry and the seeming Rican, seeming distance and, kiddo. But you know, that, and it’s beautiful. It’s quite profound. It’s,
Rick Archer: it’s multi dimensional, as I’ve been saying, there’s the seeming level and there’s the knowing level.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. And the knowing level is, is directly experience Yes. Guys, or the direct or the direct experience in of everything. And, and in that because the, the knowing nothing separate always one of our usable was any intelligence, oh, my god, intelligence behind it all.
Rick Archer: Absolutely. Even a single cell, you look at what’s going on in a single cell, and it’s mind boggling.
Terrence Stephens: It’s Unbeliev that makes the concept of God look ridiculous, God, God, a God
Rick Archer: or Goddess, some beard, a puppeteer, but but God is sort of all pervading intelligence, which is, you know, functioning at all levels of creation and orchestrating all this beauty and complexity, you know, in which there is absolutely no gap whatsoever anywhere. You go out to not go out to intergalactic space and look at a cubic centimeter. And there’s, there’s that same intelligence functioning in various ways.
Terrence Stephens: And the important thing to realize there is God is not an entity. Yeah, exactly. God, God is consciousness awareness, the livingness the, the everything that that is God and the intelligence that like that is latent. Bob refers to it as an intelligence energy. It’s good enough, the intelligence that is latent, within that, knowing when you experience this, that Oh, my God.
Rick Archer: Well, it implies look locality and implies isolation. You know, it implies that God is some kind of being that is somewhere, you know, at a switchboard pushing buttons, but yeah, I think we both agree that it’s not that Yeah,
Terrence Stephens: yeah. Which is, that’s just a concept. Yeah.
Rick Archer: You know, before we run out of time, I want to try to nail you on this reincarnation question. I don’t think we’re gonna resolve it. But even Okay, here we are talking we have been pleased for forgive the limitations of human by patient grammar, we have human bodies, okay, you can cut them they’ll bleed. We’ve been talking about multi dimensionality and, and gross and subtle levels of creation and so on. We have subtle bodies, you know, and there’s all kinds of experiences people have near death experiences, where they’re on, they’re in surgery, and all of a sudden, they’re seeing the surgeons from the ceiling. And they’re, they noticed there’s a red sneaker on a, on a balcony outside that nobody ever knew was there. It’s right next to the air conditioner and, and you know, so there’s somehow something subtle, that actually has a ability to experience even when the physical body is shut down. And and so the whole idea of reincarnation, and I’m sure you’re familiar with this is that that that something subtle, continues on when the physical body dies, and eventually takes up a new body. And the purpose of that the rationale of that is that There’s an evolutionary journey that that we’re all on. And obviously, most people don’t seem to have to complete that journey in one life. So you get another crack at it, you know, you finish the first grade, and you get to go to the second grade and so on. Education is not completed in one grade. So that’s it in a nutshell, I’m sure you’ve heard the philosophy. So, you know, why do you feel like that? It couldn’t work that way.
Terrence Stephens: Okay, so that correct me if I’m wrong? Because I know that you’ve got a much better background educationally than I do. But what you’re referring to there is the wheel of samsara.
Rick Archer: You could say that. I mean, that’s one term that’s been used for it. And I don’t get I don’t use that term, because I don’t feel like it’s something I need to desperately get off. Or anything, which is usually Yeah, go ahead.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. So and you just took the words right out of my mouth. You know, there is the idea, the wheel of samsara is birth, death, reincarnation, birth, death rank, and I’m always trying to improve this lifetime, it’s going to be better. And we don’t even have a reference to the past lifetime. So how it’s going to be better. But like, what’s the reference point? I’m not sure what the reference point we don’t. We don’t remember our past life. If there was one. For a start.
Rick Archer: Some people did. In fact, a guy named Stevenson at the University of Virginia interviewed 1000s of young children who still had memories of past lives and was able to corroborate the things they said by going to that town or looking up the records of this plane that crashed in World War Two or whatever. But that is that memory eventually, if we have,
Terrence Stephens: yeah, the mistake we make there is we that is the belief that it’s my past life. What can just be a memory of a past life,
Rick Archer: somebody else’s, or kind of just, everything comes from the absolute? Yeah, as if all the all the experiences in the universe, we come into this life, and we sort of take a bucket, but it’s kind of a random bucket. It’s not necessarily our bucket. And so we had we experienced, you know, having died in World War Two or something, but it wasn’t. There was no, it didn’t happen to an on us or we. Yeah, it could be that way. Some people theorize it that way. I tend to Yeah, go ahead. Yeah.
Terrence Stephens: That gets resolved. Here. The truth, that question actually gets resolved from here. Not mind. Yeah. And in reference to the wheel of samsara, you know, you know, the idea is to eventually get off the wheel. And the easiest way to get off the real wheel is to realize there’s no one on it. Yeah, that’s, and there’s no wheel.
Rick Archer: And that’s what all the traditions actually say. They say, once that realization occurs, then reincarnation becomes a moot point. It is sort of Yeah, it’s not going to happen anymore. Yeah. But that is not to say that it hasn’t been happening prior to that realization. Maybe it has, maybe it’s a random bucket, maybe there’s actually, you know, the the clashes that samsara is that some scars that are accumulated in this life, maybe we actually take those impressions into a new one and work on them some more. Yeah, that’s what the story is theory. You know, I mean, I take all these ideas, all ideas as hypotheses. And hypotheses could be explored experientially if we feel it’s worth while doing so. But, you know, I don’t take them as absolute truths with which anybody ought to believe in, there’s just certain things which kind of make sense logically, but who knows, you know, hypotheses can be disproven. That’s the way science works. You know, I mean, we say all crows are black. Alright, you’ll get an albino crow. And that, that refutes that, that notion, so anything can always be disproven.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. See, look. Either what these teachers are saying is true. Or it’s not. Yeah, it’s either true, or it’s not. And all of them or it’s partially true. All of them saying there’s no personal self there.
Rick Archer: Yeah, but a lot of teachers talk in the same breath about reincarnation. Shankara Ramanna. You know, they they acknowledge that that’s a thing.
Terrence Stephens: Don’t don’t know them. I don’t know. And if that’s what they’re talking about, I would strongly disagree. Okay, I don’t say and that’s all Yeah,
Rick Archer: I don’t know. Nah, sorry about it.
Terrence Stephens: I don’t know for a fact, you know, like, I haven’t spoken to any, any of those people that you referred to. I haven’t read any of the, you know, I think just a lot of times concessions are made. I, I do you know, until you know, the seeming person reaches a point of being prepared to drop it all. It all just dropping.
Rick Archer: Are you saying that you disagree with them adamantly and with certitude? Are you saying that? No, it does not jibe with your view of things. No,
Terrence Stephens: no, I can’t say that. Because I’ve never read anything that that. And even if
Rick Archer: you had if you read the stuff, you might disagree, but you can you say my but but then again, maybe you would say well, maybe they’re right. Maybe they’re wrong. I don’t know. Doesn’t doesn’t like jive with my perspective on things. But who knows? Who’s to say that my perspective is completely aligned with all the mysteries of the universe?
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, and all I can say to that, Rick, is, you just know. Yeah, that’s all I can say.
Rick Archer: That’s a little dangerous. If by, by that, if by you just no means you can pass judgment on. No various relative considerations.
Terrence Stephens: It’s just a look, there’s just a knowing there’s a knowing of the truth. Yeah. There just is.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Essential chance. Yeah. Yeah. That’s a no, no, I’m good at that.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. And then in reference to what others are saying, or, you know, like, I can’t give an opinion on that. I would have to read this film. Yeah. Um, without saying, you know, rather than get it secondhand from you. Sure. Yeah. I would have to have a Yeah. So. And even then, would I pass judgment? Look, it’s all okay. Whatever it is, that’s been taught, whether it be meditation, where that what you know, whether it be Christ consciousness, whether it be the course in what? It’s all okay. Yeah, it’s all. There’s nothing wrong.
Rick Archer: That’s my attitude. That’s how I’m able to do this show. Yeah,
Terrence Stephens: it’s. Well, yeah. And a beautiful show is everything. It’s all okay.
Rick Archer: Yeah. Well, that’s a good note to end on. So, all right, we’ve totally resolved it.
Terrence Stephens: What’s the book? I’m okay. You’re okay. Yeah. A long time ago, right. Yeah.
Rick Archer: Back in the 70s. Okay, good. Well, this has been lively. Thank you. Got you off the porch for a little bit.
Terrence Stephens: Thank you. Yeah. Really enjoyed the dialogue. I’ve completely forgotten that. There’s even people out there watching this.
Rick Archer: Yeah, we’ve just been there were a couple 100 or so. And yeah, watching still are. But anyway, I hope they’ve enjoyed it. We’ve enjoyed it. Yeah. A lot of fun theory.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah, I’d like to do this again with you sometime.
Rick Archer: Yeah, we can do that. Yeah, probably you’ll be arguing this reincarnation, I’ll be arguing that there’s not by that time.
Terrence Stephens: Now, that’d be a good one. Alright, great. Thanks. Yeah, thank
Rick Archer: you. And I just want to thank those who’ve been watching the live one. Those who are not watching the live one, these are always broadcast live. So go to the upcoming interviews page on bat gap.com. And you’ll see when upcoming ones are scheduled for and you can tune into those if you want. There’s also a little thing off to the right on that page of every interview where you can click on it and you can set a reminder to notify you and in your email program or in Google or something. Yeah, so thanks for for listening or watching. Next week, I’ll be doing a second interview with Paul Mueller Ortega, who is an expert in Kashmir Shaivism. He has a website called Blue through Blue through yoga. And so that should be an interesting discussion, as most of them seem to be so so thanks a lot. And go to bat gap calm and check out the menus for you know, various things that are that are there such as the email list or the audio podcast and so on. Thanks again, Terry.
Terrence Stephens: Thank you, Rick, thank you for providing this platform and this space for this message to get out there. I mean, I think it’s wonderful what you do. Thank you. Oh,
Rick Archer: it’s just a lot of fun.
Terrence Stephens: Yeah. Thank you. All right. Thank
Rick Archer: you, Terry. Talk to you later. Thanks. Thank you. Bye bye.