Daniel Ingram and Michael Taft talk about the Fire Kasina practice, how making mental objects the focus can lead to deep awakening, balancing wisdom and faith, processing trauma with meditation practice, and how beauty can be a great support and inspiration on the path. Daniel shares about his experiences and spiritual development with Fire Kasina work, co-teaching with Culadasa, the increasing numbers of people attaining stream entry, and the over-diagnosis of attainment. Also discussed is Michael’s experience with faith and guru based practice, the effects of of impermanence insight on concentration, “hindrances for smart people,” rapture, and more.
Daniel Ingram is an emergency medicine physician and long-time dharma practitioner. He is the author of the seminal text Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha — now out in its second edition — and also the main force behind the radical dharmaoverground website, which specializes in a brand of unusually-frank discussion of meditation.
2:26 – Daniel’s recent visit to Dharma Treasure
4:34 – Daniel’s teaching model
9:11 – Fire Kasina update
12:16 – The “Play and Fun” of Fire Kasina work
17:23 – Waking up the mind
25:14 – How Daniel processed trauma from working in emergency medicine
27:12 – Hindrances for smart people
29:22 – How skillful faith can clear the way through the analytical mind
32:45 – Michael’s shift from sarcasm and skepticism to beauty and love
36:57 – The inspiration and dignity of beauty in spiritual practice
40:47 – Daniel’s journey to embracing faith
44:57 – Pragmatic faith
47:05 – Working with analytical thinking
51:02 – The meta-hindrance of self-loathing
54:05 – Addressing attachment to intellect and drivenness in spiritual practice
58:18 – Daniel’s tips for Vipassana practitioners
1:01:48 – Rapture and awakening
1:05:49 – The analogy of the kazoo player
1:12:25 – How the insight of impermanence changes the experience of concentration
1:16:29 – Stream entry and the over-diagnosis of attainment
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