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Vajrayana, Engineering, and Jiu Jitsu, with Rin’dzin Pamo

In by Michael W. Taft3 Comments

Host Michael Taft speaks with Vajrayana teacher Rin’dzin Pamo about Vajrayana meditation practice currently, adapting practices for our times, their practice of The Mind Illuminated, the role of the guru in practice, how meditation practice is like engineering (and Jiu Jitsu), and much more. Rin’dzin Pamo (also known as Charlie El Awbery) is a British born Vajrayana practitioner living in …

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Why Metadharma?, Pt. 2, with Vincent Horn

In by Michael W. TaftLeave a Comment

Why Metadharma? is an unusual episode of the Deconstructing Yourself podcast, in that it’s Part 2 of a joint interview between Vince and Michael Taft. Part 1 appeared on the Buddhist Geeks podcast recently, and they continue the conversation here. The topic of these discussions is a subject that both speakers are actively developing, called “metadharma.” In brief, metadharma refers …

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Meditation, Emotions, and the Bio-Emotive Framework with Douglas Tataryn

In by Michael W. Taft3 Comments

Host Michael Taft speaks with clinical psychologist and life coach, Douglas Tataryn, Ph.D. about meditation and psychology. Topics include his work with meditation teachers such as Culadasa, the “wake up, clean up, grow up, and look around” model, Wilber’s integral model. working with trauma and the dark night, and his system of emotional processing known as the Bio-Emotive Framework. Douglas …

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Loch Kelly on Awareness, Freedom, and Effortless Mindfulness

In by Michael W. Taft10 Comments

Host Michael Taft speaks with Loch Kelly on nondual practices, contemporary forms of ancient awareness techniques, dzogchen, mahamudra, advaita, the role of psychotherapy in awakening, the need—or not—for a guru, open-hearted awareness, internal family systems therapy, and more. Loch Kelly is an author, meditation teacher, psychotherapist, and founder of the non-profit, Open-Hearted Awareness Institute. Loch teaches in a non-sectarian lineage …

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Culadasa on Meditation and Therapy

In by Michael W. Taft2 Comments

In this special episode, Culadasa talks about the domains of meditation and psychotherapy, where their areas of effectiveness overlap and where they don’t. He also shares a powerful personal story of his own emotional processing work after awakening—why it was needed and how it helped. Culadasa has been practicing Buddhist meditation for over four decades, and is the director of …

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Meditation for the End of Civilization, with Rick Hanson, Ph.D.

In by Michael W. Taft5 Comments

Host Michael W. Taft speaks with bestselling author and meditation teacher Rick Hanson about how to maintain resilience in the face of the coming potential collapse of civilization, the problem with agriculture, meditation methods to build inner strengths, Rick’s upcoming book Neuro-dharma, and more. Rick Hanson, PhD, is a psychologist, Senior Fellow of the Greater Good Science Center at UC …

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The Liberating Practice of the Fire Kasina – with Daniel Ingram

In by Michael W. Taft5 Comments

Author and meditation teacher Daniel Ingram speaks with host Michael W. Taft about how the Fire Kasina practice can be used as an insight practice. Subjects include: the background of kasina practice in the Thervada tradition, using kasinas to go into jhana, how vipassana practice interacts with jhana practice, meditation on the Three Characteristics, and detailed instructions for doing the …

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Meditation, Madness, and Psychology, with Tucker Peck

In by Michael W. Taft5 Comments

Tucker Peck, meditation teacher and clinical psychologist, talks with host Michael Taft about how whether awakening (both in the traditional “stream entry” sense or in other definitions) actually “fixes” a person’s psychology or not. Topics include: the validity of the Progress of Insight model, Tucker’s hellacious Dark Night experience and the dukkha ñanas in general, when to switch from shamatha …

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DY 032 – “Embodying Awakening” – with Mukti

In by Michael W. Taft1 Comment

Nondual spiritual teacher Mukti talks with host Michael Taft about the debate between the Direct and Progressive paths of realization, working with energetics and embodiment, her childhood background in the Self Realization Fellowship of Paramahansa Yogananada, pointing out the sense of space in realization, her own experience of awakening, and more. Mukti is a spiritual teacher, whose name originates in …

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DY 031 – “Deconstructing the Heart Sutra” with Jayarava Attwood

In by Michael W. Taft4 Comments

Buddhist scholar Jayarava Attwood speaks with host Michael Taft about the history of the Pali Canon, how ideas about karma & dependent arising contradict each other, the shifting grounds under the apparent solidity of the suttas, monism vs. pluralism, meditation as a subjective or objective practice, and the fact that the Sanskrit Heart Sutra is a forgery, Jayarava is a …

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DY 030 – “Robert Anton Wilson, High Weirdness, and Buddhist Meditation” – with Erik Davis

In by Michael W. Taft2 Comments

Michael Taft speaks with Erik Davis about author Robert Anton Wilson, anarchism in the 1970s, Terrence McKenna, P.K. Dick, psychedelics, cultures of awakening now and then, Zen practice, and more.  Erik Davis is an author, podcaster, award-winning journalist, and popular speaker based in San Francisco. He is probably best known for his book TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the …

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DY 029 – What Can AI Tell Us about the Human Mind?” – with Joscha Bach

In by Michael W. Taft3 Comments

Host Michael Taft speaks with Joscha Bach about artificial intelligence; the sense of self; building a civilizational intellect; what it is like to be a mind?; the relationships between motivation, emotion, and behavior; the “cargo cult” model of civilization; what is learning?; how artificial minds may be different from human minds, the enlightenment industry, the Tower of Babel myth; and …

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DY 028 – “Doubt, Faith, and Fun in Meditation Practice” – with Daniel Ingram

In by Michael W. Taft3 Comments

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 …