Art Ticknor: the essence of confrontation

My last interview with Art Ticknor was nearly 15 years ago, so I thought it time to catch up and see what’s new. Nothing much, in the sense that Art is still as uncompromising and ever a truth-seeking gadfly. In addition to audio, there is video available for this interview. Check it out below.

Art Ticknor in 2019

Art Ticknor is the author of Solid Ground of Being, Beyond Relativity, and, his latest, Sense of Self. He was a long-time student of Richard Rose, a persistent meditator, and late in life found value in meeting with Douglas Harding. Wherever he goes, Art organizes small group meetings for discussion and self inquiry and has helped hundreds, if not thousands, of people along the way.

I hope you enjoy this episode and want to give a special thanks to monthly sponsors Rui, David, Johan, Cavebear, Sreechand, Bill, and Jeroen.  See the Supporter Options below for more info. on that.  Please feel free to leave comments or send an email with the contact form.  I always appreciate hearing your thoughts.


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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

Selected Links and Topics from this Episode:

  • Confrontation, aka group self-inquiry. Trying to get at beliefs about what we are that may not be the truth.
  • Starting your own confrontation group.
  • Aging, dying, death, and awareness – life eroding the ego
  • Obstacles on the spiritual path.
  • The view is not the viewer.
  • Meditation practice as building a muscle.
  • Looking back at what you’re looking out from.
  • Two biggest mistakes that teachers make: 1) looking back at their life and thinking they can pick out what was instrumental in their realization and what was not, 2) telling others that what the teacher did will work for the student.
  • Art’s new book: Sense of Self: the source of all existential suffering?
  • The best questions that strike you are often those being asked of someone else.
  • Determining where your focus is, self or others, and trying to swing the pendulum the other direction.
  • What to do when feeling stuck.
  • The value of fasting while on retreat.
  • Getting out of your comfort zone.
  • The difficulty of giving advice.
  • Carillon and Psychology of the Observer — Art’s two “desert island” books.
  • Douglas Harding and the Tube Experiment.
  • Going within versus meditation. If meditation means “watching the mind” then that’s the same as “going within.”
  • The processes and machinery of the mind.
  • The sense of “I.”
  • Details of the retreat in which Art’s spiritual breakthrough occurred. Douglas Harding’s Little Book of Life and Death, which Art was studying at the time.
  • The magical value of effort followed by relaxation.
  • If you want to experience group inquiry/confrontation for yourself, check out the groups listed on the TAT Forum.
  • To learn more about Art Ticknor or contact him, visit
  • To learn more about Art’s early years of seeking and more about the events leading up to his spiritual enlightenment, check out his interview on ConsciousTV.

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2 thoughts on “Art Ticknor: the essence of confrontation”

  1. This is the first ‘spiritual teachers’ podcast I’ve listened to. I enjoyed it and made notes. I can’t put my hand on my notebook but the thing I remembered most is thinking that ‘confrontation’ sounded like a pretty unpleasant experience. I can only imagine sitting there taking it with gritted teeth.

    If I remember correctly there was a comment on non-duality teachings that I agreed with. There’s a lot of talk or maybe even hype about n.d. – I can’t say I always got it or even that there was something incomplete or missing in it.

    Regardless, I look forward to listening to the next podcast. Thank-you.

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