My teachers were the sun, moon, stars, dirt, wind, trees, and the critters. All of them were preaching the truth…. ~ The Hillbilly Sutra
There is a hidden spiritual goldmine tucked away in rural Tennessee. He doesn’t consider himself a spiritual teacher and rarely speaks in public or does interviews on this topic.
Fortunately, he agreed to be on the Journals of Spiritual Discovery podcast. When our original interview ran into technical problems, he went to a professional studio and recorded a nearly two hour account of his spiritual path and the wisdom revealed along the way.
Sit back and be transported by the poetic storytelling of this Hillbilly Sutra.
Daniel Ingram is author of Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha and a leading proponent of Buddhism as a practical path to enlightenment in this lifetime. He’s played a key role in keeping Buddhism vital and accessible while also grounded in the core teachings. If you’re on a Buddhist path or thinking about exploring such, you’ll be well served by this interview of Daniel Ingram.
A key divergence among the traditions Daniel practiced occurred in their relationship to “the ten defilements.” Daniel found the Vajrayana model of dealing with negative emotions more optimal for awakening than the Theravada model. [19:31]
The meditation Daniel teaches is “relentlessly Thervadan,” but he does not use all of their maps. [22:20]
What’s the deal with Daniel calling himself an “arahat” and ia Enlightenment the end of the search? [23:55].
The distinction between Arahatship and Buddhahood. [28:55]
Radically restructuring his life to fit his spiritual search. [31:54]
Australia: land of koala bears, kangaroos, Vegemite, and enlightened Aussies like Eddie Traversa. Eddie is in the unique position of being both a psychotherapist and awakened, which gives him a deep perspective as well as a broad tool set with which to help clients.
In our interview, he discusses why he doesn’t focus on helping people towards enlightenment, the importance of developing a relationship with the unconscious, and getting unstuck from patterns. Along the way, we share a laugh about the motivational qualities of revenge and our fondness for the film American Beauty.
This 1.5 hour interview with Michael Taft seemed to fly by, leaving me immediately wanting a Part 2. As you will see, Michael is deeply knowledgeable about meditation and succinctly explained the paradox of the observer watching the observer–a meditative trap which dumbfounded me for many years. Michael Taft’s wide-ranging experience defines a person who refuses to believe something just because somebody told him. That quality of respectful doubt shines through as we explore his life and views on awakening.
When Paul Rezendes was kind enough to write a blurb for the back cover of Images of Essence, my book collaboration with Bob Fergeson, I had no idea there was anything more to Paul than being a talented nature photographer and wildlife tracker. A few years later, a friend recommended I watch of series of videos featuring him. I was immediately hooked by Paul Rezendes’ unique way of presenting self inquiry as “tracking the mind.”
I hope you enjoy this interview, as it brings to light the passion for truth that Paul Rezendes’ life exemplifies and which he emphasizes with those he meets.
How most movies and music strum the strings of the ego self. [1:08:50]
Art and the creative process. [1:11:05]
“Awakening isn’t a reaction to something.” [1:14:18]
Anyone is welcome to email Paul or join his online dialogue group. [1:17:44]
There is also a free, feature-length documentary called The Inner Tracker that has Paul Rezendes and a number of other notables in the tracking community gathered to talk about a “new” kind of tracking: the tracking of the self. I have a background in environmental education, so found it interesting to see some of the participants tightly bound to concepts and identities around protecting nature, confronted by the fundamental question of “who is it that believes they are saving something?”