Bob Cergol (racergol at tatfoundation.org) is a deeply profound spiritual teacher yet lesser known. His words are based in practical experience and grounded in wisdom. I have listened to this interview several times now, and it keeps getting better. Our conversation tackles Advaita misconceptions, Bob’s time with Richard Rose, his own awakening experience, and even includes Bob’s “cheat sheet” for the spiritual search.
After our interview, Bob emailed me a couple of comments.
Regarding that question you asked about the effect of realization on my (in one’s) life – I feel I may have under-stated the impact. Yes, it does not change too much of anything to an external observer – my wife told me I seemed more distant after I told her “something” had happened – but it changes everything in one’s interior life. Not a day goes by that I am not affected in some way, or think about something in a certain way, that absent the realization would not be the same – and less somehow. So my life is enriched in a way that I can’t very well describe since it’s not enriched in conventional terms.
I ran across the quatrain from the Rubaiyat that I had in mind last Saturday but just couldn’t recall it. It pretty much encapsulates my predominant mood. I strongly picked up the same mood from Richard Rose, and it comes through in many of his poems, too:
Ah, Love! Could you and I with Fate conspire
To grasp this sorry Scheme of Things entire,
Would not we shatter it to bits-and then
Re-mold it nearer to the Heart’s Desire!
Sure, and of course – everything is perfect as it is – but I agree with Rose that “The Night is cold, and Truth is too thin a blanket.”
I hope you enjoy this interview with Bob Cergol.
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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 Notes from this Episode
- The transcendence of self that Bernadette Roberts writes about. [04:01]
- Awareness does not belong to the thing that has a sense of being alive. [08:59]
- The traumatic realization that Richard Rose wrote about in Three Books of the Absolute. [15:06]
- You can’t get enlightened. The personality can’t have this experience. [16:06]
- Giving up on the spiritual path. [26:15]
- Alfred Pulyan [50:34]
- The mind and body are inseparable. [58:38]
- Our whole life experience is a reflection of us. [1:26:00]
- Beginner’s level meditation. [1:27:00]
- The process of Going Within. [1:29:53]
- People cannot conceive of removing themselves from the equation of the spiritual path. [1:30:30]
- The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam [1:34:34]
- Psychology of the Observer by Richard Rose [1:44:20]
- The dangers of reading Nisargadatta Maharaj’s I Am That [1:45:15]
- Bob Cergol’s cheat sheet for the spiritual path [1:48:50]