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Last update: 2013-06-19

BG 288: Mindfulness is More Than Just Paying Attention

2013-06-19

Episode Description: In this interview, host Vincent Horn speaks with Dr. Ronald Purser–professor of management at SFSU and an ordained Zen Buddhist teacher in the Korean Taego order. They explore Ronald’s research on organizational mindfulness, mindfulness in corporate settings, and how Buddhist philosophy can inform organizational theory and practice, with a particular emphasis on exploring [...]

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BG 287: Information & Contemplation

2013-06-10

Episode Description: David M. Levy is a professor of technology in the Information School (or iSchool) at the University of Washington. Since 2006 he has offered a course called “Information and Contemplation”, a course on mindfulness in the Digital Age. In this interview with host Vincent Horn, David talks about his early rejection of zen [...]

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BG 286: Humanity Gets an Upgrade

2013-05-06

Episode Description: Ramez Naam is a computer scientist who spent 13 years at Microsoft, leading teams working on email, web browsing, search, and artificial intelligence. He’s the author of several books including Nexus, a science fiction thriller set in the near future when humans are linked mind-to-mind by an experimental and illegal nano-drug. In this [...]

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BG 285: Reinventing the Retreat

2013-04-23

Episode Description: Emily Horn is a meditation teacher and the Buddhist Geeks Life Retreat Director. In this episode, Emily joins host, and husband, Vincent Horn to discuss the evolution of the Buddhist Geeks Life Retreat program–a new retreat model designed for the 21st century. Emily and Vincent begin the discussion by exploring the benefits and [...]

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BG 284: Contemplative Technologies

2013-04-15

Episode Description: Mike Redmer is a freelance UX designer and mindfulness coach. His most recent project, the ReWire App, is part of a growing field of technology designed to assist the end user in attaining greater degrees of concentration ability and contemplative awareness. In this second part of their conversation, host Vincent Horn discusses with [...]

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BG 283: ReWiring Meditation for the Digital Age

2013-04-08

Episode Description: Mike Redmer is a freelance UX designer and mindfulness coach. His most recent project, the ReWire App, came out of a desire to utilize technology to make mediation more effective and engaging. In this first part of a conversation with host Vincent Horn, Mike shares his motivation for creating Rewire and the ways [...]

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BG 282: Specializing in Letting Go

2013-03-25

Episode Description: Dr. Reggie Ray is an author, teacher, and the Spiritual Director for the Dharma Ocean Community in Crestone, Colorado. In this episode Reggie and host Vincent Horn conclude their conversation by discussing the recurring cycle of conflict between “authentic lineages” and “institutional lineages” in the world’s religions. Reggie describes the personal toll this [...]

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BG 281: Mahamudra in the Modern World

2013-03-19

Episode Description: Dr. Reggie Ray is an author, teacher, and the Spiritual Director for the Dharma Ocean Community in Crestone, Colorado. He has forty years of study and intensive meditation practice within the Tibetan Buddhist tradition in the lineage of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche. Recently, Dr. Ray published an audio training series through Sounds True titled [...]

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BG 280: The Naked Monk

2013-03-11

Episode Description: Stephen Schettini is an author and blogger at TheNakedMonk.com, and a teacher of Mindful Reflection. He was a Tibetan Buddhist monk for 8 years before he left the monastic path and began referring to himself as an ex-Buddhist. In this episode Stephen talks with host Vincent Horn about why he left his monastic [...]

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BG 279: Finding Authority Outside of Tradition

2013-03-04

Episode Description: Ted Meissner is the host of The Secular Buddhist podcast and the Executive Director of the Secular Buddhist Association. In this episode host Vincent Horn concludes his conversation with Ted by exploring the role of Tradition in secular Buddhism. They consider the question of spiritual authority in secular Buddhism and whether it’s possible [...]

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BG 278: Secular Buddhism

2013-02-25

Episode Description: Ted Meissner is the host of The Secular Buddhist podcast and the Executive Director of the Secular Buddhist Association. In this episode with host Vincent Horn, Ted shares examples of secular Buddhism, why he is skeptical but not cynical about religion, and he stresses what he thinks is the importance of right speech [...]

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BG 277: Start-up Thinking and Buddhist Lineage

2013-02-18

Episode Description: Lawrence Levy is a student of Segyu Rinpoche and a former CFO and board member at Pixar Animation Studios. He left his role as an executive at Pixar in 2000 to pursue a study of religion and philosophy, which led him to Buddhism. In this episode, Lawrence speaks with host Rohan Gunatillake about [...]

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BG 276: The Artistic Path is the Crooked Path

2013-02-07

Episode Description: John F. Simon is a visual artist and software programmer whose work can be in found in prominent museum collections such as the Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. He was also one of the app designers on the world’s first app [...]

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BG 275: Buddhism, Technology, and Quarter-Pounders

2013-01-30

Episode Description: Buddhist Geeks Vincent Horn and Rohan Gunatillake conclude their interview for the KGNU public radio program Sacred Lines by further discussing the intersections between Buddhism and Technology.  From the efficacy of mindfulness apps to the ubiquitous question of duality, the Geeks explore what it means to be Buddhist in a technologically advanced world. [...]

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BG 274: Fifty Shades of Geek

2013-01-22

Episode Description: In a recent interview for the KGNU public radio program Sacred Lines, Buddhist Geeks Vincent Horn and Rohan Gunatillake have a discussion about what it means to be a modern Buddhist practitioner, how technology can complement Buddhist practice, and how geekery and meditation meld. They use the Buddhist Geeks project and buddhify mobile [...]

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BG 273: The Witness

2013-01-14

Episode Description: Jonathan Blow is an indie game designer most well known for his time-bending game Braid.  In this episode we conclude our conversation with Jonathan by exploring his upcoming game, The Witness, as well as his in-depth exploration of non-duality. This is part 2 of a two part series. Listen to part 1, Quantum [...]

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BG 272: Quantum Gaming

2013-01-08

Episode Description: Jonathan Blow is an indie game designer most well known for his time-bending game Braid.  In this episode Jonathan describes his journey from a kid fascinated with playing video games in arcades to a game developer concerned with game design as a spiritual practice. This is part one of a two part series. [...]

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BG 271: Contemplative Design | Less is More

2012-12-17

Episode Description: Michaël Harboun wants to design products that find a balance between inner contemplation and external technology. In this conversation we explore things like transpersonal social networks and speak about the way that gaming can be contemplative (Michael would like to simply call video games “experiences”). We also discuss the idea of “Contemplative Design”, [...]

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BG 270: Transcendenz & Anti-Time

2012-12-12

Episode Description: “We can only see what we’ve become conscious of.” – Michaël Harboun Michaël Harboun wants to design products that find a balance between inner contemplation and external technology. The concept video for his augmented reality project Transcendenz illustrates the positive potential of finding such a balance (you can find the original video here [...]

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Video: The Mat and World are One

2012-11-14

  Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference 2012, Matt Flannery, founder of the incredibly popular micro-lending service Kiva.org, joins us to discuss his personal journey. He shares what it was like building Kiva.org and his own struggle to balance reflective practice–in his case Zen–with making big changes in the world. [...] …

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Video: It’s a Jungle in There

2012-11-13

  Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference 2012, Daniel Ingram talks about the ways that contemplatives could learn from the Naturalists. The Naturalists excelled in meticulous exploration, descriptive science, and classification. Their example can serve as the foundation for the next step in contemplative advancement, where the vast spectrum of [...] …

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Video: Mindful Binge Drinking and Blobology

2012-11-12

  Episode Description: Willoughby Britton, contemplative scientist and neuroscience researcher, spoke at the Buddhist Geeks Conference 2012 about mixing Dharma with scientific enterprise. Scientific research of meditation is undoubtedly one of the forces behind the proliferation of the Dharma, and offers much promise as a “Dharma technology”. However, Britton asserts that significant challenges remain before [...] …

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Video: Creativity Without Grasping

2012-11-08

Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2012, Martine Batchelor explores the process of grasping and its amplifying/exaggerating effects. She also goes into how meditation can help us to de-grasp/release our holding thus allowing for a more creative engagement and creative response. Episode Links: Martine Batchelor Transcript: Transcript coming soon… …

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Video: McLuhan and Buddhism | How is the Medium Changing the Message?

2012-11-07

  Episode Description: What is the message of Buddhism today? Self-improvement? A fulfilling life? An understanding of the mysteries of the human condition? How does McLuhan’s famous dictum “the medium is the message” apply now that people are connecting with Buddhism in radically different ways? In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in [...] …

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BG 269: The Path of Centering Prayer

2012-10-29

Episode Description: David Frenette is a senior teacher in the Centering Prayer movement–a contemplative Christian practice that was designed by Father Thomas Keating. He’s also the spiritual director at the Center for Contemplative Living in Denver, and the author of The Path of Centering Prayer: Deepening Your Experience of God. In this episode, David describes [...]

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BG 268: Meditating with God

2012-10-22

Episode Description: David Frenette is a senior teacher in the Centering Prayer movement–a contemplative Christian practice that was designed by Father Thomas Keating. He’s also the spiritual director at the Center for Contemplative Living in Denver, and the author of The Path of Centering Prayer: Deepening Your Experience of God. In this episode, David describes [...]

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BG 267: It’s a Jungle in There

2012-10-08

Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference 2012, Daniel Ingram talks about the ways that contemplatives could learn from the Naturalists. The Naturalists excelled in meticulous exploration, descriptive science, and classification. Their example can serve as the foundation for the next step in contemplative advancement, where the vast spectrum of inner [...]

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BG 266: Mindful Binge Drinking and Blobology

2012-10-02

Episode Description: Willoughby Britton, contemplative scientist and neuroscience researcher, spoke at the Buddhist Geeks Conference 2012 about mixing Dharma with scientific enterprise. Scientific research of meditation is undoubtedly one of the forces behind the proliferation of the Dharma, and offers much promise as a “Dharma technology”. However, Britton asserts that significant challenges remain before we [...]

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BG 265: Creativity Without Grasping

2012-09-17

Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2012, Martine Batchelor explores the process of grasping and its amplifying/exaggerating effects. She also goes into how meditation can help us to de-grasp/release our holding thus allowing for a more creative engagement and creative response. Episode Links: Martine Batchelor Transcript: Martine:    So I [...]

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BG 264: McLuhan and Buddhism | How is the Medium Changing the Message?

2012-09-11

Episode Description: What is the message of Buddhism today? Self-improvement? A fulfilling life? An understanding of the mysteries of the human condition? How does McLuhan’s famous dictum “the medium is the message” apply now that people are connecting with Buddhism in radically different ways? In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2012, [...]

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BG 263: The DNA Sutra

2012-09-05

Episode Description: Richard Eskow is a writer, consultant, and musician, who is a senior fellow with a public policy group. In this episode, Richard discusses with host Vincent Horn a recent article he wrote for Tricycle Magazine called DNA Sutra. For the piece he had his DNA analyzed to have his ancestry traced all the way [...]

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BG 262: The Emerging Science of Mindfulness Meditation

2012-07-31

Episode Description: David Vago, an instructor of psychology at Harvard Medical School, has held the position of Senior Research Coordinator for the Mind & Life Institute, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to fostering dialogue and research at the highest possible level between modern science and the great living contemplative traditions. In this episode David relates how [...]

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BG 261: The Angry Buddhist

2012-07-17

Episode Description: Seth Greenland is an author, playwright, and screenwriter. For two seasons he was a writer-producer on the Emmy-nominated HBO series Big Love. His latest novel, The Angry Buddhist, is the story of an ex-policeman seeking guidance from an online Buddhist teacher. The novel is currently in development with Showtime as a possible series [...]

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BG 260: Enlightenment is Capable of Endless Enlargement

2012-07-04

Episode Description: Gary Weber has been a scientist, military officer, senior executive in industry and academia, and is the author of the book Happiness Beyond Thought: A Practical Guide to Awakening. He has practiced Zen meditation, yoga, and philosophy for more than thirty-five years. In 1998, after over 20 thousand hours of various contemplative practices, [...]

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BG 259: Mapping the Mindful Brain

2012-06-25

Episode Description: Dr. Judson Brewer is an assistant professor at Yale in psychiatry and a contemplative scientist studying the effects of meditation on the brain. He and his colleagues believe they have found a way to use FMRI to give meditators real time feedback on their mindfulness practice. This feedback has led to increased efficacy [...]

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BG 258: A Heart Blown Open

2012-06-13

Episode Description: Keith Martin-Smith is an author, martial artist, and ordained Zen priest. His latest book is “A Heart Blown Open”, the biography of his teacher Jun Po Denis Kelly Roshi. In this episode, Vincent Horn talks with Keith about the book and Jun Po’s “Mondo Zen” approach, which aims to join the path of [...]

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BG 257: Finding the Future in the Past

2012-06-04

Episode Description: Hokai Sobol and John Peacock continue their discussion about how the Buddha and Buddhism are described in the earliest Buddhist writings. By getting more accurate with translations of the earliest writings, Peacock believes modern Buddhism can free itself of the trappings of Religion, Humanism, and the need for consolation in the face of [...]

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BG 256: Will the Real Buddha Please Stand Up?

2012-05-28

Episode Description: John Peacock is a scholar and Associate Director of The Oxford Mindfulness Centre. His studies of the earliest Buddhist writings have revealed to him a very human Buddha and a very different Buddhism than we know today. In a conversation with Hokai Sobol, Peacock describes the historical Buddha as a very practical teacher [...]

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BG 255: Is Super Mario a Buddhist?

2012-05-23

Episode Description: Jane McGonigal is an author and game designer who wants to change the world through gaming. In this second part of a presentation recorded during the 2011 Buddhist Geeks Conference, she shares the details about games where people are going into the world and using gamer virtues for real life good. From better [...]

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BG 254: A Buddhist Game Designer

2012-05-07

Episode Description: Jane McGonigal is an author and game designer who describes herself as “23% Buddhist, 77% geek.” She begins the presentation, originally given at the 2011 Buddhist Geeks Conference [http://conference.buddhistgeeks.com], by asking three questions: Do Buddhists and Game Designers share goals? Do Buddhists and Game Designers share methods? Could Buddhists and Game Designers share [...]

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BG 253: A Mindfulness Manifesto

2012-04-23

Episode Description: Kelly Sosan Bearer speaks with Ed Halliwell, journalist, teacher, and author, about his new book The Mindful Manifesto and its themes of mindfulness, Buddhism, and Science. Ed describes his personal experience with stress and depression and his journey to Buddhism and mindfulness practice as a way to get healthy. He defines “mindfulness” and [...]

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BG 252: Climate Change is Happening on Our Watch

2012-04-17

Episode Description: In this episode Rohan Gunatillake speaks with Buddhist teacher Rob Burbea on the topic of Climate Change. Rob wonders why the Western Buddhist community is largely silent on the topic, and over the course of the discussion Rohan and Rob explore several questions, including: How does dharma practice relate to the topic of [...]

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BG 251: The Communication Gap

2012-04-09

Episode Description: Ken McLeod and Vincent Horn continue their conversation about the student-teacher relationship by examining communication mediums. They begin by examining the value and limitations of video chat as well as the benefits and dangers of practice via social networking. Vincent and Ken explore why it’s important for students and teachers to meet in [...]

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BG 250: Crossing the Generational Divide

2012-04-02

Episode Description: Ken McLeod joins Vincent Horn for the start of a conversation examining some of the painful generational gaps that occur between students and teachers. They begin by exploring the question of how to skillfully deal with this gap, and in particular what kinds of gaps are most common. Vincent brings up some of [...]

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BG 249: Strengthening the Body-Mind

2012-03-05

Episode Description: Rob McNamara is a psychology professor, zen practitioner, and strength trainer who works at the intersection of strength training and contemplative practice. In this episode McNamara explains how his experiences in the gym helped him understand the purpose of meditation, and how both inner and outer strength are deeply intertwined. He describes how [...]

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BG 248: Enlightenment Through an Evolutionary Lens

2012-02-27

Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2011, Diane Hamilton explores Enlightenment, not as a binary state, but from a developmental point of view, as ever-expanding identification. Hamilton explains, and then demonstrates through the Big Mind Process, the value of taking on the perspective of others to help resolve disputes [...]

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BG 247: Disrupting the Awakening Industry

2012-02-20

Episode Description: Rohan Gunatillake, in this presentation taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2011, explores how Buddhism can learn from the suffering of other established systems such as the music, publishing and journalism industries. Rohan outlines his presentation based on the Buddha’s Four Noble Truths, explains how he used the concepts presented to launch [...]

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BG 246: What Science Can Teach Us About Practice

2012-02-13

Episode Description: In this episode, taken from the Buddhist Geeks Conference in 2011, Kelly McGonigal, PhD in Health Psychology, speaks on how the neuroscience of meditation can help us understand how practice shapes the mind and can also offer fresh insights into concepts like mindfulness and suffering. As Dr. McGonigal presents various scientific studies that [...]

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BG 245: Singing Meditation

2012-02-06

Episode Description: Ari Goldfield and Rose Taylor are Buddhist teachers and translators .  Goldfield is a Buddhist translator and teacher who has studied and practiced under the close guidance of Khenpo Tsültrim Gyamtso Rinpoche since 1995.  Taylor is a Buddhist translator and second-generation Buddhist teacher who teaches Buddhist meditation, philosophy, yogic exercise and dance, and [...]

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BG 244: The Buddha Walks Into a Bar

2012-01-23

Episode Description: Lodro Rinzler is a next generation Buddhist teacher in the Shambhala tradition and author of “The Buddha Walks Into a Bar.” In our discussion we focus primarily on the ways in which Generation Y is relating differently to dharma–from sex and relationships, to technological changes and instantaneous connection, to working with 1st generation [...]

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BG 243: The Myth of the Teacher

2012-01-16

Episode Description: Martine Batchelor joins Buddhist Geeks again, this time to explore the way that the roles of teacher and student are changing in contemporary times. While acknowledging various teacher models in the Buddhist tradition, she lays out the reasons she prefers the good friend, or adviser model that you find in the Theravada and [...]

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BG 242: Practicing at the Crossroads

2012-01-09

Episode Description: Martine Batchelor was a nun in a Korean Buddhist monastery for 10 years, where she followed a traditional path of practice and exploration. We speak about her journey in becoming a nun, what the rhythms of that life were like, what practices she undertook, and how she came to integrate, and deepen, the [...]

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BG 241: Uniting Technology and Wisdom

2011-12-20

Episode Description: Vincent Horn is a co-founder and director of Buddhist Geeks. In this talk, originally given at the Pacific Asia Art Museum, he explores the interdisciplinary insights to be gained by combining geek culture’s radical experimentation, facility with external technologies, and forward-thinking with Buddhism’s wisdom of the human condition, mind-training systems, and familiarity with [...]

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BG 240: Innovating New Forms of Buddhist Tantra

2011-12-14

Episode Description: David Chapman–writer and computer scientist–joins us again to finish our conversation about “consensus Buddhism” and the alternatives that he sees to the consensus. David speaks about some of the innovations that occurred in the last few decades within the world of Buddhist tantra, including such teachers as Chogyam Trunpa Rinpoche, Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, [...]

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BG 239: Consensus Buddhism and Mindful Mayo

2011-12-05

Episode Description: David Chapman is a writer, computer scientist, engineer and Buddhist practitioner. He shares in this episode a description of what he calls consensus Buddhism. Chapman claims that up until recently this consensus group has crowded out the mindshare of alternative approaches to Buddhism, through focusing on universalizing and making absolute several principles, which [...]

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BG 238: Form is Emptiness, Emptiness is Evolving

2011-11-21

Episode Description: David Loy, Zen teacher and author, joins us to discuss the radical implications of modern narratives on the traditional Buddhist view of the world. David, whose background includes rigorous academic training and Zen practice in the Sanbo Kyodan tradition, puts him squarely in the “scholar-practitioner” camp. And it’s with this dual-background that he [...]

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BG 237: Seasons of Practice

2011-11-14

Episode Description: We’re joined again by spiritual teacher and author Terry Patten to discuss the multidimensional nature of practice. We speak about the form he teaches, called Integral Life Practice, one that has it’s roots in the work of Sri Aurobindo, Michael Murphy and George Leonard, and according to Terry goes back even to the [...]

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BG 236: The Art of Dharmic Embrace

2011-11-07

Episode Description: Terry Patten–spiritual teacher and author–joins us to speak about some of the challenging issues involve in teaching and practicing an empowering form of dharma. We begin the conversation by exploring his history with infamous teacher Adi Da. Patten spent many years practicing intimately with Da, and shares his incredible love and appreciation for [...]

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BG 235: A Visitation from the Unknown

2011-10-24

Episode Description: We’re joined by spiritual teacher Andrew Cohen to explore the story of how he came to teach what he calls “evolutionary enlightenment.” Andrew begins by sharing an early spiritual experience, that really set him on the path of seeking. He also shares some of his background with Buddhist meditation, which he began with [...]

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BG 234: No Yogi Left Behind

2011-10-10

Episode Description: We’re joined again on Buddhist Geeks by one of the most influential figures in the transpersonal psychology movement, Dr. Charley Tart. We cover a huge range of topics in this interview, covering many things related to what he refers to as a “broad scale approach to meditation.” Charley starts off by speaking about [...]

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BG 233: Where Science and Compassion Meet

2011-10-04

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Dr. Kelly McGonigal, to discuss her work at Stanford University, where she is teaching compassion-based practices from the Buddhist tradition, taught in a way that pulls from scientific research and appeals to a secular sensibility. As part of her work with CCARE she shares some of her background [...]

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BG 232: The Dark Night Project

2011-09-26

Episode Description: We’re joined again this week by Brown University neuroscience researcher Willougbhy Britton. Willougbhy begins this episode by going into further depth into some of the typical experiences that have been reported during her research into the difficult stages of the contemplative path. She lists out typical changes in cognition, affect (emotion), perception, and [...]

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BG 231: The Dark Side of Dharma

2011-09-19

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Brown University neuroscience researcher Willoughby Britton. In this episode Dr. Britton shares some of the details of a research project that she’s working on called, “The Difficult Stages of the Contemplative Path.” She goes into the purpose of the research project and also some of the research methods [...]

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BG 230: The Internet is Not Your Teacher

2011-09-06

Episode Description: This week’s episode comes from the recent Buddhist Geeks conference where Ethan Nichtern, a Buddhist teacher in the Shambhala tradition, speaks about ways in which the internet falls as a an aid in dharma. He uses the Tibetan teaching on co-emergence to frame the simultaneous benefits and harms of the internet, while also [...]

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BG 229: Enlightenment for the Rest of Us

2011-08-29

Episode Description: “You can perform neurosurgery on yourself.” – Kenneth Folk This week’s episode comes from the recent Buddhist Geeks Conference, where meditation teacher Kenneth Folk spoke about his three pillars of pragmatic dharma: 1) awakening is possible, 2) I know because it happened to me, and 3) here’s how. Kenneth cycles through each of [...]

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BG 228: There is No Enemy

2011-08-22

Episode Description: “Obstacles in your path should not be regarded as obstacles. They are simply features of the landscape which have to be negotiated.” – Ken McLeod This week’s episode is taken from the recent Buddhist Geeks Conference, where Ken McLeod–a well known Buddhist teacher and management consultant–spoke about moving beyond ‘us vs. them,’ embracing [...]

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BG 227: To Know One Religion is to Know None

2011-08-17

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Comparative Religion scholar and Buddhist teacher Rita Gross. Rita shares how she got into Buddhist practice, first studying deeply in the Shambhala tradition and then in the last several years with the Tibetan Nun Jetün Khandro Rinpoche. Rita goes on to speak extensively on the value of studying [...]

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BG 226: The Buddhist Teachers Council

2011-08-08

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by vipassana teacher Martin Alyward to hear his perspective on the Buddhist Teachers Council, a recent gathering of Western teachers that was held at the Garrison Institute. Martin was part of the group of next generation teachers who met with pioneering teachers to explore how they might better support [...]

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BG 225: The End of Self-Referencing

2011-07-18

Episode Description: We’re joined again by Harvard trained social scientist Dr. Jeffery Martin. As a conclusion to our discussion on the initial findings on his research into “non-symbolic consciousness” Jeffery goes into the further reaches of his research participants. He speaks about the tendency for people on the higher range of his model to have [...]

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BG 224: The Study of Non-Symbolic Consciousness

2011-07-11

Episode Description: We’re joined by Harvard trained social scientist Dr. Jeffery Martin to discuss some of the incredible research that he’s doing into the further reaches of human potential. He speaks about his initial research, done during his first PhD program, wherein he extensively studied the self-help and positive psychology literature. He explains how this [...]

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BG 223: Tuning In to the Truth of the Moment

2011-06-27

Episode Description: We’re joined again by meditation teacher and actress Stephanie Nash, this time to explore some of the striking parallels between the disciplines of acting and meditation. Stephanie shares how a month-long Shakespeare acting intensive was her gateway to the spiritual path and how at it’s core acting is about allow the flow of [...]

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BG 222: The Chief Facilitator

2011-06-21

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by meditation teacher and actress Stephanie Nash, to discuss her experience of working with her Shinzen Young. Stephanie is one of Shinzen’s chief facilitators and has been working closely with him since the late 90s. She shares some of the key things she has learned in that process, including [...]

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BG 221: No System Exists in a Vacuum

2011-06-13

Episode Description: We’re joined again by Yoga and Buddhist meditation teacher Michael Stone, this time to look at Buddhism as a system. We speak about the interrelations between spiritual systems and the sociological, ecological, and cultural systems that also make up our lives. We also explore what it means for dharma to be in concert [...]

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BG 220: Connections Between Yoga & Buddhism

2011-06-06

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Yoga and Buddhist meditation teacher Michael Stone. We begin by finding out how Michael got into spiritual practice, which happened to be at an early age through a profoundly spiritual uncle who suffered from schizophrenia. During his time in the asylum, visiting his uncle, he learned to meditate, [...]

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BG 219: Organizational Enlightenment

2011-05-30

Episode Description: We’re joined again this week by organizational expert, and founder of HolacracyOne, Brian Robertson. Brian begins by describing the pit-falls of both strict hierarchy and consensus based organizational structures, pointing out that in both cases the systems are fused with the people. He contrasts that with the Holacracy structure, which employs several methods [...]

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BG 218: Liberating the Soul of Organization

2011-05-24

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Brian Robertson, founder of HolacracyOne, a company whose aim is to liberate the soul of organization. We discuss with Brian the main principles and practices behind Holacracy—a system that Brian helped develop as a new operating system on which businesses can run. He distinguishes between what he calls [...]

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BG 217: The Aesthetic of Meditation is Broken

2011-05-16

Episode Description: We’re joined again by a regular contributor of Buddhist Geeks and blogger at 21awake.com, Rohan Gunatillake. Rohan joins us to explore three areas in which the aesthetic of meditation could be improved. Specifcally these areas are: 1) language, 2) look & feel, & 3) delivery models. We then explore various ideas on how [...]

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BG 216: Teaching Mindful Awareness to Children

2011-05-09

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by Susan Kaiser Greenland a leader in bringing mindful awareness to children and teens. We explore the differences between mindful based approaches and Buddhist approaches, seeing in what ways they are mutually supportive and in what ways tensions exist between them. Susan then shares some of the methods she [...]

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Bonus Audio: Upgrading to Post-Traditional Buddhism

2011-05-05

In this bonus clip—taken from the Q&A segment of Hokai Sobol’s recent online class on The Three Pathways of Awakening—Hokai responds to the question about how to distinguish between a traditional and “post-traditional” approach to Buddhist practice. Transcript: Hokai Sobol: There are three basic elements that move someone’s approach from traditional to post-traditional. Now, when [...]

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BG 215: Emergent Buddhism

2011-05-02

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Buddhist teacher and scholar Hokai Sobol to explore the broad, but crucial topic of Emergent Buddhism. As a preface to the panel that Hokai will be leading at the upcoming Buddhist Geeks Conference on “The Emerging Face of Buddhism,” he explores the nature of emergence in the history [...]

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BG 214: The Practice of Contemplative Photography

2011-04-25

Episode Description: “Photography and Buddhism share essential interests: both are concerned with clear seeing.” – Andy Karr & Michael Wood We’re joined this week by Buddhist teacher and photography Andy Karr. We explore some of the principles and practices behind the practice of contemplative photography, a unique method developed by Michael Wood. We also look [...]

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BG 213: The Stories We Tell Ourselves

2011-04-18

Episode Description: Buddhist scholar and Chaplain Danny Fisher, joins us to explore various stories, or narratives, that run through the Buddhist world. There are a variety of different kind of stories in the Buddhist tradition, including those that are more traditional and those which are more modern. Included in those narratives are Buddhist hagiographies (traditional [...]

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BG 212: Redesigning Zen

2011-03-28

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Soto Zen teacher Zenkai Taiun Elliston. Along with the being the abbot of the Atlanta Soto Zen Center, Taiun is also a long-time professional designer, having trained and taught modern design. We ask him to share his perspective on the interplay and parallels between the two fields, which [...]

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BG 211: Optimizing Awareness in Organizations

2011-03-14

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Rich Fernandez, who serves as the Head of Learning and Organization Development at eBay. Rich has a long history with meditation and eastern practices, and has been working to bring secular mindfulness practice into the workplace. He shares some striking early research into the experimental programs that he’s [...]

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BG 210: Young Buddhist Vignettes

2011-03-09

Episode Description: This week we have an intimate conversation with two young Buddhist practitioners. The first vignette is with Sophie McLaren, who practices in the Shambhala community and runs an organization dedicated to bringing Buddhism and mindful living to youth populations. The second vignette is with Wes Rosacker a Zen practitioner in the White Plum [...]

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BG 209: The Way of Everyday Life

2011-02-28

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by mother, author, and Zen teacher Karen Maezen Miller. Maezen speaks directly to the need to see through the dualisms that we create in our lives, and speaks specifically about the dualism of being a parent and a practitioner. She shares advice on how to not make one part [...]

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BG 208: Secrets of Meditation

2011-02-14

Episode Description: We conclude our discussion with spiritual teacher Sally Kempton—who has her spiritual roots in the Hindu tantra tradition of Kashmir Shaivism—this time speaking about some of the crucial secrets that she has discovered about deepening in meditation. She begins by sharing how she overcame a period where she had been stopping short in [...]

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BG 207: The Tantric Cousins

2011-02-08

Episode Description: This week we speak with spiritual teacher Sally Kempton. Sally was a student of the influential Hindu guru Swami Muktananda and taught in his lineage for many years. She shares with us her journey of first being introduced to Swami Muktananda, how she became a teacher, and why she shifted from being a [...]

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BG 206: Carving Out a Life of Meaning

2011-01-31

Episode Description: We’re joined this week Krista Tippett, host of the award-winning radio show “Being.” Krista begins the discussion by sharing how she went from being the chief aide to the US Ambassador in Germany, during the cold war era, to asking deep spiritual and ethical questions. This questioning led her to study theology at [...]

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BG 205: Gaming as a Spiritual Practice

2011-01-24

Episode Description: Leading game designer Jane McGonigal joins guest host Rohan Gunatillake to explore the relationship between games and well-being, and see what clues they might hold for the future of Buddhist practice. Jane starts with a surprising disclose: she is a meditation practitioner and has been studying Buddhism for the last 5 years, since [...]

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BG 204: Virtual Vajrayana

2011-01-17

Episode Description: Senior Shambhala teacher David Nichtern joins us to geek out about some of the potential consequences of our rapidly developing technologies on the Vajrayana tradition. We speak extensively about the ramifications of greater degrees of virtual reality, how our sense experiences (what in Buddhism are referred to as the ayatanas) are already virtual, [...]

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BG 203: Entrepreneur as Bodhisattva

2011-01-10

Episode Description: This week guest host Rohan Gunatillake of 21awake.com interviews spiritual entrepreneur Nick Jankel. They explore the notion of “enlightened entrepreneurship,” discussing why it is that spirituality and business often seem at such odds. Nick shares some of his own background and aim in business and speaks about the secular path of an entrepreneur [...]

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BG 202: Resolving the Questions that Drive Us

2011-01-03

Episode Description: We finish up our discussion with meditation teacher Ken McLeod, touching on a number of fascinating and challening topics. Ken speaks about the distinction between answering the questions that drive us, as opposed to simply understanding “what the Buddha taught.” He gets into where he thinks these questions originate from, and also what [...]

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BG 201: Pragmatic Buddhism

2010-12-27

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Buddhist teacher, Ken McLeod, to explore an approach he has coined “Pragmatic Buddhism.” We explore his early Buddhist training, which included 2 back-to-back 3-year retreats, completed under the guidance of Ven. Kalu Rinpoche. He describes this period as part boarding school, prison, and seminary. He shares why it [...]

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BG 200: Turning the Microphone Around

2010-12-20

Episode Description: For this 200th anniversary edition, the microphone is turned around on the regular host, Vincent Horn. Our guest host for this week’s episode is the UK-based blogger of 21awake.com, Rohan Gunatillake. Rohan asks Vincent about his personal practice history leading up to Buddhist Geeks, and also how the project affected his practice since [...]

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BG 199: The Buddha’s Enlightenment Solved His Problem

2010-12-14

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Insight Meditation teacher Sharon Salzberg, to talk about her latest book, “Real Happiness” and also about meditation as an emerging part of secular culture. This interview was recorded during a conference at Emory University in which Dalai Lama spoke about secular ethics as the most relevant approach to [...]

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BG 198: Emerging Trends in Western Buddhist Communities

2010-12-06

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Ph.D Candidate and Buddhist blogger Brooke Schedneck, to explore her research into several emerging patterns in Western Buddhist communities. We begin with how, as a training academic, she got into Buddhism and how she ended up combining both 1st and 3rd person observation into her research. We also [...]

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BG 197: The Wise Use of Technology

2010-11-29

Episode Description: Many Buddhist figures have things to say about wise engagement with technology, but many of these same figures are not technologists themselves, and so have a limited view, or understanding, of the full range of what technology is, and perhaps of what it means. This week, to explore these very questions, we speak [...]

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BG 196: The Technium

2010-11-22

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by celebrated technologist and co-founder of Wired Magazine, Kevin Kelly. Kevin shares how he went from a back-to-the-lander hippie in his early youth, to becoming one of the most important technological thinkers alive today. We then explore one of the central ideas of Kelly’s technological philosophy, what he calls [...]

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BG 195: Rebel Buddha

2010-11-15

Episode Description: Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche—a dynamic and engaging Gen X Tibetan Lama who has spent half of his life living in the West—joins us to explore several key points related to the development of a more contemporary Buddhism. We explore some ideas from his newest book, Rebel Buddha, including the idea that there is an [...]

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BG 194: Live the Questions

2010-11-08

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Buddhist teacher Elizabeth Mattis-Namgyel to explore some of the topics from her most recent book, The Power of an Open Question. Elizabeth speaks about the nature of questioning, and why questioning is one of the best ways to come in accordance with the way things are. She also [...]

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BG 193: The Lazy Path to Enlightenment

2010-11-01

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by author, teacher, and Tibetologist Glenn Mullin. During our conversation with Glenn we focus primarily on a system of teachings in the Tantric tradition called The Six Yogas of Naropa. He speaks about each aspect of the practice—including such practices as sexual yoga, dream yoga, and bardo yoga—and also [...]

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BG 192: Making Joy Our Default Setting

2010-10-18

Episode Description: Insight meditation teacher James Baraz joins us to explore the many facets of joy, happiness, and well-being. We begin by finding out how joy became an important part of James’ practice, since in his early years with Buddhism he was, in his own words, “dead serious about practice.” It turns out that part [...]

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BG 191: Living as a River

2010-10-11

Episode Description: Bodhipaksa is a teacher from the Triratna Buddhist Community, formerly the Friends of the Western Buddhist Order. He joins us this week to explore the Buddhist teachings on impermanence and “change blindness.” We also explore one of the central practices that he teaches, called the 6-elements practice—one of the primary methods found in [...]

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BG 190: Living in Buddha Standard Time

2010-10-04

Episode Description: We speak with Lama Surya Das this week about what it takes to integrate spiritual understanding into our lives as 21st century citizens. He explores the question of whether our sense of time has sped up in the “over-information age,” and how we can change our relationship to time. He also shares the [...]

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BG 189: The Tao of Twitter

2010-09-28

Episode Description: When it comes to leveraging the technologies of our time, Lama Surya Das is one of the most active American Buddhists around. He blogs, tweets, skypes, hosts webinars, and participates in virtual retreats. And yet he acknowledges that if it were completely up to him, he’d be leading meditation retreats in-person and writing [...]

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BG 188: Intimacy through Practice

2010-09-13

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Flamenco guitarist and Zen practitioner Ottmar Liebert. Ottmar shares the story of how he broke with his childhood religion of Catholicism, started doing Transcendental Meditation, and then found his spiritual home in the Zen tradition. We also discuss the nature of practice, and compare how it manifests in [...]

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BG 187: Non-Meditation and the Nature of Thought

2010-09-06

Episode Description: “You need not make efforts to create non-conceptuality. You need not regard thoughts as a fault. And so that your practice does not succumb to famine, from the beginning have a bountiful crop. Not searching for a state that is calmly resting, vividly clear, and filled with bliss, bring into your experience whatever [...]

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BG 186: A Different Way of Approaching Meditation

2010-08-30

Episode Description: We’re joined again by meditation teacher Jason Siff to conclude our exploration of the fundamental ideas and practices behind his unique approach of Unlearning Meditation, or what he calls Recollective Awareness. We begin with exploring what recollection, or mindfulness, is and how it can be harnessed through a practice of meditative journaling. Jason [...]

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BG 185: Unlearning Meditation

2010-08-23

Episode Description: “Meditation instructions that disallow thinking, reflection, or being open to the full range of experience usually imply a distrust of the mind.” – Jason Siff We’re joined by meditation teacher and author Jason Siff, to explore what happens when meditation instructions and techniques get in the way. Jason explains that meditation instructions and [...]

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BG 184: Bodhisattva, Superstar

2010-08-16

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by filmmaker Michael Trigilo, to explore some of the themes from his newest allegorical documentary, “Bodhisattva, Superstar.” Included in our conversation are questions around what it means to be “spiritual but not religious”, what purpose Religion serves and what difficulties come with it, and why anger is such a [...]

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BG 183: The Timeless Tradition of Spiritual Apprenticeship

2010-08-09

Episode Description: In the last part of our discussion with Buddhist teacher and scholar Hokai Sobol, we wrap up our exploration on some of the important influences and forces that shape Western Buddhism. As part of that we discuss the fluid nature of his consumer-client-colleague model. We also talk about the deep problems that have [...]

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BG 182: Exchanging Dharma – Client and Colleague Mindsets

2010-08-02

Episode Description: We’re joined by Buddhist teacher and scholar Hokai Sobol, as we continue exploring the different mindsets that we often take, while exchanging Dharma here in the West. In the last episode he described the Consumer mindset, and in this one goes on to speak about the Client and Colleague mindsets. He explores the [...]

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BG 181: Exchanging Dharma – The Consumer Mindset

2010-07-26

Episode Description: We’re joined again this week by Buddhist teacher and scholar Hokai Sobol, to continue our exploration of the hidden mindsets and cultural forces that shape Western Buddhism. In this episode Hokai explores a tradition of exchanging knowledge, which is at least 1,000 years old in Europe, that of the “master & apprentice.” Hokai [...]

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BG 180: The Invisible Forces that Shape Western Buddhism

2010-07-19

Episode Description: In the first part of a multi-part discussion with Buddhist teacher and scholar Hokai Sobol, we explore the invisible, and rarely discussed, forces that shape Western Buddhism. In particular what we call “culture” shapes our institutions and communities in ways that we rarely see with clarity. Hokai spends a good bit of this [...]

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BG 179: An Evidence-Based Spirituality for the 21st Century

2010-07-12

Episode Description: We’re joined by Charles Tart, one of the founders of the branch of psychology known as transpersonal psychology. Dr. Tart’s life work has to do with putting forward an “evidence-based spirituality for the 21st century.” In this conversation we explore the evidence that he explored for phenomena like reincarnation, as well as the [...]

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BG 178: Growing Up Versus Waking Up

2010-06-28

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by clinical psychologist and Buddhist practitioner John Welwood. John has spent his entire adult life exploring the intersection between Eastern and Western psychological approaches. In our discussion we cover the following topics: the three realms of human experience, spiritual bypassing (a term that John coined), the Buddhist perfections, waking [...]

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BG 177: Working with Sexual Energy

2010-06-21

Episode Description: We’re joined again by British meditation teacher, Christopher Titmuss, to continue our exploration into the powerful, and often challenging, realm of human sexuality. Christopher shares a couple of stories of monks dealing with sexuality, one a traditional story and the other a story of a 92 year old monk that he practiced with [...]

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BG 176: The Place of the Erotic

2010-06-14

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Insight meditation teacher and engaged activist Christopher Titmuss. Our main topic of exploration is the place of sexuality, eros, and love in the practice of Dharma. Contained within that topic we explore what is often meant by the word ‘desire’ in English, and how that differs from the [...]

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BG 175: The Buddhist Atheist

2010-06-08

Episode Description: Secular Buddhist teacher Stephen Batchelor joins us to explore some of the ideas presented in his newest book, Confession of a Buddhist Atheist. We start off by examining the two Buddhist doctrines of karma and rebirth, using the original teachings of the Buddha, especially the “imponderables” as a touchstone for the conversation. Stephen’s [...]

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BG 174: The Mindful Therapist

2010-05-31

Episode Description: This week we speak to vipassana meditation teacher, and psychotherapist Trudy Goodman. Trudy completes the story of her early Zen days, and also describes how she transitioned into becoming a vipassana teacher. She also shares some of her training in psychology, wherein she studied with the famous child developmentalist, Jean Piaget in France. [...]

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BG 173: Zen, Vipassana, and Psychotherapy

2010-05-24

Episode Description: This week we speak to vipassana and Zen teacher, Trudy Goodman. Trudy shares how she got into both Buddhist meditation and psychotherapy, and uses her story to illustrate the powerful ways that these different methods can compliment one another. Trudy also reflects on the differences between her experience in Zen training with Korean [...]

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BG 172: The Core of Wisdom

2010-05-17

Episode Description: We’re joined again this week by professor and meditation teacher Roger Walsh. This week we dive into his study of the common practices seen in all of the world’s wisdom traditions. He shares each of these practices, and then also explores with us the ancient tradition of Shamanism, which is estimated to be [...]

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BG 171: A Technology of Transcendence

2010-05-10

Episode Description: This week we speak with professor and teacher Roger Walsh. Roger shares his journey from being a hardcore neuorscientist and psychiatrist to becoming an avid meditator and mystic. Once Walsh discovered that at the core of all the religious traditions was “a technology of transcendence” he jumped head-long into vipassana meditation–bringing, as he [...]

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BG 170: Enlightened Society

2010-05-03

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by the President of Shambhala, Richard Reoch. Along with overseeing the Shambhala organization, Richard is also a long time human rights, activist, and environmental leader. With this unique background, we thought it would be particularly relevant to explore the topic of “enlightened society.” Enlightened society was an idea presented [...]

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BG 169: The Most Fundamental Duality

2010-04-26

Episode Description: We’re joined again by Zen Master Diane “Musho” Hamilton, this time to explore the most fundamental duality of masculine and feminine. Diane points out that if you have an objection to looking at it in these terms, you can also think of it as the polarity between receptivity and activity or between personal [...]

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BG 168: Integral Zen

2010-04-19

Episode Description: We’re joined by Zen Master, Diane “Musho” Hamilton, to explore an approach to spiritual practice called “Integral Zen.” In our interview we explore several related topics, including the difference between a path of renunciation and one of transmutation. As part of this we also look at the role that the shadow—a term coined [...]

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BG 167: I Vow to Feed All Hungers

2010-04-12

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by one of the pioneers of the socially engaged Buddhist movement, Zen Master Bernie Glassman. Although he grew up in a family that valued social action, after some years of Zen practice he had an experience that amplified his calling to serve those in need. At that point he [...]

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BG 166: What Young People Want

2010-04-05

Episode Description: “We always talk about the Sangha as part of the triple gem, but I think it is the least developed part of Buddhism in the West.” – Sumi Loundon Kim We’re joined this week by Sumi Loundon Kim, author of Blue Jean Buddha and The Buddha’s Apprentices, to explore what young people want [...]

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BG 165: I’m Not Babysitting Your Ego

2010-03-29

Episode Description: We finish up our discussion with spiritual teacher Adyashanti, focusing on several topics relevant to contemporary seekers. We start off by exploring his thoughts on questions of power & hierarchy in the student-teacher relationship. Adya’s approach is to put power back on the student, encouraging them to be their own inner authority from [...]

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BG 164: Now That’s Zen

2010-03-22

Episode Description: We’re joined by spiritual teacher Adyashanti to discuss his 15 years of training with Zen teacher Arvis Joen Justi. He shares details from his initial awakening at 25–where he realized that he was what he was seeking–to the end of the search several years later at 31. It’s at that point that Arvis [...]

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BG 163: Can Dharma Help us Turn the Corner?

2010-03-15

Episode Description: This week we share a public talk given by Integral spirituality teacher Terry Patten and Vajrayana teacher Hokai Sobol, on the question of whether traditional Dharma can (or can not) help us turn the corner in a high-speed world. The talk was given in 2009 at the Boulder Integral Center, and was hosted [...]

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BG 162: Contributing to the Gross National Happiness

2010-03-08

Episode Description: Richard Brown–a long time Buddhist and contemplative educator–joins us to share some of the details from his recent involvement in helping the small Buddhist country of Bhutan reform their public education system. Bhutan, which since the early 70′s has had as its main goal to increase Gross National Happiness, wants to create an [...]

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BG 161: Happiness – There’s an App For That

2010-03-01

Episode Description: In this episode we’re joined by Soren Gordhamer, long time tech writer, and author of Wisdom 2.0: Ancient Secrets for the Creative and Constantly Connected. Soren often writes for the Huffington Post and Mashable (a social media blog) on the relationship between the inner world with technology and social media. He explores with [...]

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BG 160: The Jedi Mind Training of Concentration

2010-02-22

Episode Description: In this episode we wrap up our discussion with meditation teachers Tina Rasmussen and Stephen Snyder, two of the only lay Western teachers authorized to teach the jhana system of Pa Auk Sayadaw. They share the deeper purpose of concentration practice, which isn’t to attain any particular states, but rather is to serve [...]

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BG 159: Mastering the Jhanas

2010-02-15

Episode Description: This week we speak with Theravada mediation teachers Tina Rasmussen and Stephen Snyder. In 2005, while on a 2-month retreat, they were the first Western lay practitioners (i.e. non-monks) to complete the traditional concentration practices of Pa Auk Sayadaw–a well-regarded Burmese jhana master. The Sayadaw encouraged them to teach what they’ve learned, and [...]

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BG 158: The Zen of Zen History

2010-02-08

Episode Description: James Zito is a Buddhist film-maker, and the director of a newly released documentary on the history of Zen Buddhism, Inquiry Into the Great Matter. James joins us to discuss his new film, focusing primarily on what he learned while making the film. He shares some specifics on the lives of the famous [...]

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BG 157: Unifying Developmental Enlightenment and Timeless Realization

2010-02-01

Episode Description: We’re joined again this week by Kenneth Folk, a long-time Theravada practitioner and meditation teacher. Kenneth completes his harrowing spiritual story, all the way to the point, where he says that he, “got off the ride and was done.” He speaks about how uncommon it is, in Western Buddhist circles, to believe that [...]

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BG 156: Ordinary People Can Get Enlightened

2010-01-25

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Kenneth Folk, a long-time Theravada practitioner and meditation teacher, who describes in exquisite detail his spiritual journey. It began in earnest at the age of 24, when having done several hits of LSD, he had a life-altering experience that put him squarely on the path of seeking. Several [...]

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BG 155: The Dharma of Second Life

2010-01-18

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by Zen teacher Jiun Foster, who is actively involved in teaching dharma in the virtual world of Second Life. We speak with him about what it’s like being a participant in Second Life, and what the limitations and strengths of Second Life are, compared to other social media technologies. [...]

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BG 154: The Mountain of Spirit

2010-01-10

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by Zen-inspired dharma teacher, Michael McAlister. Michael is the leader of the Infinite Smile sangha, just east of Berkeley, in what Michael calls, “the hard edge of suburbia.” After many years of Zen practiced with the San Francisco Zen Center, Michael set up to teach a form of dharma [...]

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BG 153: Feminine Zen

2010-01-04

Episode Description: Grace Schireson is a Zen master in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi and is the abbess of the Empty Nest Zendo in northern California. She joins us today to explore some of the main themes in her recently released book, Zen Women: Beyond Tea Ladies, Iron Maidens, and Macho Masters. Among the [...]

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BG 152: Returning to the Marketplace

2009-12-21

Episode Description: This week we speak with Zen Master, Genpo Roshi, about the relationship between money and spirituality. It’s a hot topic and one that he is incredibly passionate about. He shares the details of a successful new fundraising campaign that his community puts on called the Big Heart Circle or 5/5/50. 5/5/50 stands for [...]

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BG 151: Eddies in the Stream

2009-12-14

Episode Description: We conclude our uber-geeky conversation with neuropsychologist and dharma teacher Rick Hanson this week, exploring what might be happening in the run-up to the transforming moment of nirvana. In the Theravada tradition of Buddhism the moment or nirvana (or nibbana as it’s called in that tradition), and even the period leading up to [...]

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BG 150: Self is a Network Phenomenon

2009-12-07

Episode Description: We’re joined again by Neuropsychologist and Theravada teacher, Rick Hanson. This time we explore the Buddhist proposition of anatta, or selflessness, from the point of view of neuroscience and the brain. Rick explores whether a self actually exists using the following 4 core attributes of how a self is often defined: It is [...]

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BG 149: A Crash Course in Applied Neurodharma

2009-11-30

Episode Description: This week, we’re joined by trained Neuropsychologist and Theravada Buddhist teacher, Rick Hanson, to explore what he calls “applied Neurodharma.” We begin by exploring the 1st noble truth of suffering, but from the perspective of evolutionary neurobiology. In other words, why does it appear that we’re hard-wired to suffer, and what are the [...]

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BG 148: Work, Sex, Money, Dharma

2009-11-23

Episode Description: Martin Aylward continues his discussion with us how we can bring forth a more relevant, relational, and potent form of contemporary dharma practice. He begins by exploring the tendency for Western practitioners to rely too much on retreat practice, instead of on the juice that comes from their daily lives, and the need [...]

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BG 147: Freestyle Awakening

2009-11-15

Episode Description: The theme of distinguishing between the Buddhist teachings and forms which lead to awakening, and those forms that are culturally inherited and perhaps unsuited for our current Western context, is an ongoing one on Buddhist Geeks. This week, we continue this exploration with Dharma teacher, Martin Aylward. Martin, who lives in southern France, [...]

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BG 146: Investing in the Future of American Buddhism

2009-11-08

Episode Description: We continue our discussion with Shambhala acharya, Judith Simmer-Brown, about how we can strategically invest in American Buddhism so that it survives in the long-term. We explored the first three areas of importance in-depth in part 1, which included the translation of core texts, the development of a monastic lineage, and the appointment [...]

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BG 145: The Survival of American Buddhism

2009-11-02

Episode Description: This week, we’re joined by Shambhala acharya and Naropa University professor, Judith Simmer-Brown. She joins us today to discuss four areas, which she learned about while at Colombia University in the late 60′s, that help determine whether or not Buddhism will take root in a new country. These four are: The translation of [...]

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BG 144: Turning Your Back to the Buddha

2009-10-25

Episode Description: Insight Meditation teacher, Rodney Smith, joins us to explore the topic of “urban dharma”–seeing that the transformative potential of one’s life and relationships are on equal footing with silent, more passive forms of meditation. Rodney critiques the common tendency to elevate silent retreat practice above all other aspects of practice. As part of [...]

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BG 143: Stepping out of Self-Deception

2009-10-18

Episode Description: Rodney Smith, the founder of the Seattle Insight Meditation Society, joins us today to discuss several fascinating topics. We start with an exploration of how the Big Bang and the origin of life on Earth (some 3.8 billion years ago) and spiritually significant events. We also discuss the overall compatibility between Buddhist teachings [...]

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BG 142: Buddha in a Cup of Tea

2009-10-12

Episode Description: This week, we’re joined by Kenneth Cohen, a well-known qi-gong master. Along with his training in the Taoist qi-gong and tai chi chuan, Kenneth has a strong connection to the Zen tradition and to the Japanese tea ceremony. In this episode, he shares with us some of the history of tea (the camellia [...]

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BG 141: The Mechanisms of Kensho

2009-10-04

Episode Description: “A perception, sudden as blinking, that subject and object are one, will lead to a deeply mysterious wordless understanding; and by this understanding will you awaken to the truth of Zen.” – Zen Master Huang-po The above quote, taken from James Austin’s newest book Selfless Insight, is a description of kensho, an “initial [...]

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BG 140: This is Your Brain on Meditation

2009-09-28

Episode Description: This week we speak with academic nuerologist and Zen practitioner James Austin. Austin, who wrote the well-known book, Zen and the Brain, joins us to explain some of the physical mechanisms underlying both attention and the way we process reality. In terms of attention, he shares with us a very descriptive difference between [...]

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BG 139: A Surfer’s Quest to Find Zen on the Sea

2009-09-21

Episode Description: This week with speak with the author of Saltwater Buddha, Jaimal Yogis. Jaimal, a Zen surfer and journalist, wrote Saltwater Buddha to chronicle his late teens and early 20′s as he learned to surf and delved into Zen. He shares with us some of the highlights from this time of his life, and [...]

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BG 138: Reflections on 21st Century Dharma

2009-09-14

Episode Description: In this episode we have a round-table discussion, with members from the NYC-based Interdependence Project, on issues surrounding 21st century dharma in the West. Both Buddhist Geeks and the Interdependence Project tend to attract younger practitioners in their 20s & 30s. So, in this dialogue, where the oldest of us is 31, we [...]

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BG 137: Artificial Wisdom

2009-09-07

Episode Description: We’re back again with Artificial Intelligence researcher and Zen-dabbler, Ben Goertzel. We continue our exploration of some of the major themes in his non-fiction story “Enlightenment 2.0″. This precipitates a conversation about whether consciousness is a result of the mechanisms of the brain, or whether it is fundamental. And connected to that, what [...]

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BG 136: Enlightenment 2.0

2009-08-31

Episode Description: This week we speak with Ben Goertzel, an artificial intelligence researcher and Zen-dabbling spiritual seeker. Ben shares with us his introduction to Zen and his on-going relationship to spiritual practice. He also explains what is meant by “strong artificial intelligence” and AGI (artificial general intelligence) and explains why he thinks a fully functioning [...]

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BG 135: Meditation is Good for Your Life

2009-08-24

Episode Description: In this episode we speak with Karma Kagyu teacher, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche. He starts off by telling us about how he got into formal Buddhist practice, at the tender age of 9. He also shares some of his initial challenges with anxiety, and how he was able to work with it on his [...]

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BG 134: The Erotic Embrace of Life and Meditation

2009-08-16

Episode Description: We’re joined today by Vidyuddeva, a young Zen teacher who spent 5 years in monastic training with Zen Master Steve Hagen. Vid is now a teacher in his own right, and teaches with both the iEvolve Practice Community as well as with the Integral Spiritual Center (founded by Ken Wilber). In this episode, [...]

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BG 133: Erik Curren: The Buddhist Politician

2009-08-09

Episode Description: Erik Curren is a business leader, community activist, author, Buddhist meditator, and politician—who is running for state legislature in Virginia during the 2010 election period. We were contacted by Erik’s campaign manager, who told us that Erik’s Buddhist background was causing a backlash of religious intolerance from some camps, including his fellow Democrats. [...]

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BG 132: Buddhist Chaplaincy, Buddhist Youth

2009-08-03

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by Reverend Danny Fisher–a Buddhist Chaplain and author. Danny shares with us his reasons for becoming chaplain, where the notion of chaplaincy or service to others comes from in the Buddhist tradition, and what it’s like to undertake a Buddhist-based divinity program. In the 2nd half of our conversation [...]

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BG 131: Buddhist History 101

2009-07-27

Episode Description: This week we speak with esteemed scholar, and the former professor of Buddhist Studies at UC Berkely, Dr. Lewis Lancaster. Lewis shares with us the important history of the Buddhist tradition, focusing in particular on the unique attributes of Buddhism that made it the first “world religion,” a religion that is able to [...]

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BG 130: Buddhism and the Evolution of Religion

2009-07-19

Episode Description: Zen teacher Norman Fischer—a teacher in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi—joins us again to speak about the religion, evolution, and Buddhism’s unique role in both. The conversation begins with an overview of American sociologist Robert Bellah’s schema on the evolution of religion throughout the ages. We then discuss the important role that [...]

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BG 129: Buddhism May Need a Plan B

2009-07-12

Episode Description: As Buddhism transitions to the West, we see that it is doing so in a couple different ways. Some forms look more like their original Asian roots, while others are secular and non-Religious in their presentation. Zen teacher Norman Fischer, an early 2nd generation teacher in the lineage of Shunryu Suzuki Roshi, calls [...]

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BG 128: Peter Fenner – Entering into Natural Meditation

2009-07-05

Episode Description: This week, I speak with non-dual teacher and former Tibetan monk, Peter Fenner. Peter was a monk for nearly a decade before he disrobed, realizing that the Buddhist practices he was engaged in weren’t leading him to what he was looking for. He then looked to Western psychotherapeutic technologies, and in the process [...]

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BG 127: Pop Buddhism & Satori Porn

2009-06-28

Episode Description: This week we speak with Gen-X Zen teacher Brad Warner, author of the newly released Zen Wrapped in Karma Dipped in Chocolate. We talk a little bit about his book, which leads to a critique of what we might call “Popular Buddhism.” We then ask Brad about an article he wrote called, “Satori [...]

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BG 126: Natural Wakefulness

2009-06-21

Episode Description: This week we speak with Shambhala acharya and cultural anthropologist, Gaylon Ferguson. Gaylon speaks about the view of Natural Wakefulness, in short that innate wisdom is there from the beginning. We also discuss the four foundations of mindfulness as they were taught by Chogyam Trungpa, and the differences between emphasizing naturalness and training [...]

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BG 125: Insights at the Edge

2009-06-14

Episode Description: We’re joined again by Tami Simon–founder of the spiritual media company Sounds True and senior student of Vajrayana teacher Reggie Ray. This week we ask her about her new podcast series, Insights at the Edge, where she has been interviewing many of the best spiritual teachers in the world. Jokingly, Tami said that [...]

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BG 124: You Will Get the Dharma You Need

2009-06-08

Episode Description: In this episode we speak with Tami Simon–founder of the spiritual media company Sounds True and senior student of Vajrayana teacher Reggie Ray. Tami shares us with us the intimate details of her initial meeting with Reggie, and the amazing results that followed. She also describes what she has learned from beginning to [...]

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BG 123: Dharma Music Can Sound Like Anything

2009-06-01

Episode Description: This week we speak to the Buddhist-inspired musician Ravenna Michalsen. She explains why dharma music need not sound the way we think it should (think monks chanting in Asian in a cave). Instead, Ravenna’s music crosses musical genres and stretches our notion of what dharma music is. We also discuss the life and [...]

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BG 122: The Evolution of the Mind and Life Dialogues

2009-05-25

Episode Description: This week, Adam Engle, the business mastermind behind the Mind and Life Institute, joins us to discuss both the evolution of the project as well as its larger impact. The first Mind and Life Dialogue was held in Dharamsala, India in 1987 with His Holiness the Dalai Lama. Since then, Adam says, it [...]

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BG 121: The Great Work of Western Magick

2009-05-17

Episode Description: Alan Chapman is a Western magick practitioner, and the author of the newly released book, Advanced Magick for Beginners. Alan found his way into the field of Chaos magick through the work of Aleister Crowley and since has worked with a powerful technique called “the Holy Guardian Angel,” which very much like the [...]

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BG 120: The Mystery of the Mind: Ten Zen Questions

2009-05-11

Episode Description: Dr. Susan Blackmore–a psychologist and long-time Zen practitioner–shares with us the discoveries that she made while writing her latest book, Ten Zen Questions. Listen in to find out what she discovered after many, many hours of asking questions, such as: “Am I conscious now?”, “What was I conscious of a moment ago?”, & [...]

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BG 119: The Dharma Overground

2009-05-03

Episode Description: Daniel Ingram, Theravada meditation teacher, joins us today to discuss the online community he and Buddhist Geeks host, Vince Horn helped create, The Dharma Overground. Daniel shares how the Dharma Overground has been a grand experiment in discussing practical, down-to-earth, and empowering dharma out in the open and the results of that experiment [...]

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BG 118: An Unusually Hardcore Dharma Book

2009-04-27

Episode Description: Daniel Ingram, a Theravada meditation teacher and one of our most popular guests, joins us again to discuss his recently published book, Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha. In discussing the book we dive into some of the more foundation distinctions he makes, including that of the three trainings. Daniel claims that [...]

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BG 117: Western Buddhism: Megatrends & Scandals

2009-04-19

Episode Description: Lama Sarah Harding, Tibetan translator and student of the late Kalu Rinpoche, joins us again to discuss some of the major trends in Western Buddhism. Having taught a class on “Buddhism in America” for the past several years, Sarah is uniquely positioned to share some key insights on this topic. We cap the [...]

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BG 116: The Traditional 3-Year Retreat: Intensive Training for a Nonexistent Job

2009-04-13

Episode Description: Lama Sarah Harding, Tibetan translator and student of the late Kalu Rinpoche, joins us to discuss the experience of doing a traditional 3-year retreat in the Tibetan tradition. She was part of a small group of people, who in the mid 70′s did the first 3-year retreat held for Westerners. Listen in to [...]

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BG 115: The Buddha Didn’t Have a Credit Card

2009-03-30

Episode Description: Insight Meditation teacher, Diana Winston, joins us to discuss an extremely relevant topic: Buddhism & Money. We explore whether or not spirituality and money are incompatible (as they are often seen) and if not how they might go together. Diana shares with us some of the original, though not so well known, teachings [...]

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BG 114: Different Types of Jhana: Sutta, Vishudimagga, & Vipassana

2009-03-23

Episode Description: We continue our discussion with insight meditation teacher and author, Richard Shankman. In this episode we continue to dissect the different kinds of samadhi and their respective fruits–what in the Theravada tradition are called jhana (or “meditative absorption”). According to Shankman there are two ways of approaching the attainment of jhana, one as [...]

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BG 113: The Power of Samadhi

2009-03-16

Episode Description: Richard Shankman–a teacher in the insight meditation tradition and the author of the recently released book The Experience of Samadhi–joins us to discuss the various teachings and approaches to what in the Theravada tradition is called samadhi or concentration meditation. During this episode Richard shares some of his personal background with samadhi practice [...]

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BG 112: Vajrayana in Plain English

2009-03-09

Episode Description: In this episode, we continue our dialogue with Shingon teacher Hokai Sobol. We begin our conversation by dropping a difficult question on Hokai, asking him how the Vajrayana traditions (both the Japanese and Tibetan) can maintain relevance in our post-modern and rapidly changing world. He suggests that we must develop a “Vajrayana in [...]

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BG 111: Japanese Shingon: The True Word School

2009-03-01

Episode Description: In this episode we are joined by one of our favorite Buddhist Geeks, Hokai Sobol. Hokai who is a teacher in the Shingon Buddhist tradition–a form of Vajrayana found in Japan–joins us today to speak about the Shingon school. Hokai shares with us a brief history of Shingon tradition and its main teacher [...]

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BG 110: Embodied Zen

2009-02-23

Episode Description: “Meditation is the royal road to the unconscious.” – Carl Jung Gerry Shishen Wick, Roshi joins us today to finish the discussion on koan training, Rinzai and Soto Zen, and on a method of training he uses to help people deal with certain psychological issues–called the Great Heart Way. He sees all of [...]

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BG 109: Koan Training and the Different Styles of Zen

2009-02-16

Episode Description: Gerry Shishen Wick, Roshi is a dual-lineage holder of both the Soto and Rinzai schools of Zen. His teacher Maezumi Roshi passed along both lineages, and so we take this unique opportunity to ask Roshi to compare these two different approaches. He talks about shikantaza (Just Sitting) and also about koan practice–sometimes referred [...]

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BG 108: Joseph Goldstein on The Science of Insight

2009-02-09

Episode Description: Joseph Goldstein–one of the primary figures in the development of the Insight Meditation movement–finishes up his conversation with us by sharing his perspective on the recent cross-pollunation of the Buddhist meditation with scientific investigation. He shares some of the recent studies that he has contributed to–including an in-depth study at the Insight Meditation [...]

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BG 107: Joseph Goldstein on the Benefits of Long Term Practice

2009-02-02

Episode Description: Joseph Goldstein–one of the primary figures in the development of the Insight Meditation movement–joins us today to discuss the unique benefits of long-term practice. He touches in on the need the train the mind, and hence the need for long periods of dedicated training. He also shares some of the background and vision [...]

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BG 106: Tibetan Buddhist Lineage in the West

2009-01-26

Episode Description: Reginald Ray, Tibetan Buddhist scholar and teacher, is backhitw us this week to discuss some pretty big topics. We explore the break that he made, several years ago with the Shambhala tradition, and the larger implications of becoming a Western teacher in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition. Connected with that we explore the whole [...]

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BG 105: The Forest Dwelling Yogi

2009-01-20

Episode Description: “Enlightenment is found in the Body and nowhere else.” – famous Dzogchen saying We’re joined in this interview by Reginald Ray–author of numerous books on Tibetan Buddhism and teacher in the lineage of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. In this episode we discuss the forest dwelling meditator, a category of practitioner outside of the normal [...]

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BG 104: Enlightenment for the Rest of Us

2009-01-12

Episode Description: Shinzen Young joins us again to discuss the possibility of a new way to deliver classical enlightenment to the masses. He discusses the classic delivery systems, which included monastic and lay life. He then builds on that to show a hybrid two-fold delivery system that would incorporate his artificial intelligence system with virtually [...]

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BG 103: Building a Dharma Successor

2009-01-05

Episode Description: Shinzen Young, professional meditation instructor and geek-extraordinaire, continues his discussion with us on the unique approach he has taken to combining the best of the scientific approach with the best of the contemplative modalities of the East. The result of this combination appears to be a delivery system for enlightenment that uses an [...]

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BG 102: Shinzen Young: The Hybrid Teacher

2008-12-29

Episode Description: Shinzen Young, professional meditation instructor and geek-extraordinaire, joins us today to share his unique journey as a contemplative. From discontinuing his PhD studies to become a full-time shingon practitioner to taking up Japanese Zen and finally discovering the mindfulness practices originating from Theravada Buddhism, Shinzen has gone deep with several contemplative techniques. In [...]

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BG 101: Hollow Bones Zen

2008-12-22

Episode Description: Jun Po Roshi, an American Zen Master in the Rinzai Zen tradition, joins us again this week to discuss the limitations of Japanese Zen as it enters contemporary American culture. He also shares the way that his Hallow Bones Zen community has re-organized the core teachings of the Buddha in their five training [...]

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BG 100: Psychotropics and NeuroLinguistic Zen

2008-12-15

Episode Description: Jun Po Roshi, an American Zen Master in the Rinzai Zen tradition, joins us to discuss his fascinating history with psychotropic drugs, including a form of LSD, called Clear Light, that he helped to create and distribute a long time ago. We also speak with him about his new form of Koan practice [...]

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BG 099: The Zen Tree Fort in the Sky

2008-12-08

Episode Description: Ken Wilber coined the terms “ascending” and “descending” to describe two possible orientations to spiritual practice. The ascending path has to do with transcending the world, leaving samsara behind, and fusing with the infinite. The descending path has to do with finding spirit in the world–in the midst of everyday life. Both approaches [...]

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BG 098: Stuart Davis: Bodhisattva Rocker

2008-12-01

Episode Description: This week we’re joined by prolific musician, artist, writer, & comic Stuart Davis. Davis, a long-time Zen practitioner, shares with us his background as a creative and the resulting unique understanding that he has of the Bodhisattva’s path. Specifically, we discuss his current creative projects, including a language called IS that he is [...]

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BG 097: The Dhamma Brothers: Vipassana Meditation in Prison

2008-11-24

Episode Description: We are joined this week by Jenny Phillips, Director and Producer of the newly released documentary, The Dhamma Brothers. The Dhamma Brothers gives an in-depth look at how a trial program of vipassana meditation courses radically transforms the lives of inmates in a the maximum-security prison facility in Alabama. In our interview with [...]

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BG 096: The Particularities of Awakening

2008-11-17

Episode Description: The Geeks of the Round Table are back, continuing our discussion of Judy Lief’s article Glimpses of Awakening. We speculate on the language and culture surrounding enlightenment both here in the West and in various countries in the East–including Japan, Burma, and Thailand. We also speculate on how likely it is that people [...]

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BG 095: The Buzz Lightyear Model of Enlightenment: To Infinity and Beyond

2008-11-11

Episode Description: In this episode we bring back the Geeks of the Round Table segment. Joining us is one of our regulars Duff McDuffee, and a new geek to the lineup, Mike LaTorra. Mike is the resident teacher of the Soto Zen Center in Las Cruces, New Mexico. During this conversation we discuss an article [...]

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BG 094: Horizontal and Vertical Enlightenment

2008-10-27

Episode Description: Philosopher and long-time Buddhist practitioner, Ken Wilber, continues his discussion of the meditative terrain and of his spiritual philosophy in general. He finishes off his discussion of the meditative maps with an exploration of what it actual takes–both in terms of time and effort–to master these various stages of consciousness. He also explains [...]

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BG 093: The Meditative Maps: Happy Mornings and Dark Nights

2008-10-20

Episode Description: Philosopher and long-time Buddhist practitioner, Ken Wilber, shares with us a 10,000 foot view of the terrain of meditative experience. He describes several of the most common Buddhist maps and their progression, including the one presented in the Visuddhimagga (one of the most prevalent in the Theravada tradition), the 10 ox herding pictures [...]

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BG 092: Buddhist Studies in the West

2008-10-13

Episode Description: Dr. Jeffrey Hopkins, one of the most important figure in the development of Tibetan Buddhist Studies in the United States, joins us to discuss the importance of academic studies. We explore what Buddhist studies are like in the West, the relationship between being a scholar and practitioner, and the broader role that Buddhist [...]

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BG 091: The Practice Adventures of Dr. Jeffrey Hopkins

2008-10-06

Episode Description: Today we speak with Dr. Jeffrey Hopkins, Professor Emeritus of Tibetan & Buddhist Studies at University of Virgina. Dr. Hopkins is a prolific translator–with 40 books translated in his career–and a committed meditation practitioner. In this episode we ask him to share some of the details of his early practice. He shares with [...]

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BG 090: The Logistics of Being a Bodhisattva

2008-09-29

Episode Description: Join us as we finish up our dialogue with Venerable Robina Courtin, the highly energetic Tibetan Nun, who some refer to as a “Dharma CEO”. In this episode she continues to share the specific logistics behind her approach to balancing wisdom and compassion in today’s world. This is part 2 of a two-part [...]

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BG 089: Venerable Robina Courtin: Bodhisattva CEO

2008-09-22

Episode Description: Join us this week as we converse with one of the most energetic and high-powered Nuns that we know, Venerable Robina Courtin. A long-time Nun in the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, Robina shares with us the importance of approaching work in the world, from the “Bodhisattva perspective” while also maintaining a firm grounding in [...]

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BG 088: Technology Makes our Delusion More Functional

2008-09-15

Episode Description: We’re joined again by CEO and Founder of Twine.com, and long-time Dzogchen practitioner, Nova Spivack. In this episode we discuss the short-comings of the Western traditions understanding and pursuit of consciousness, especially with regards to finding an ultimate particle in physics. We also explore the strengths and limitations of technology to aid in [...]

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BG 087: Does the Web have Buddha Nature?

2008-09-08

Episode Description: This week we are joined by CEO and Founder of Twine.com and long-time Dzogchen practitioner Nova Spivack. Nova has been a student of many of the world’s most well-known Rinpoches while simultaneously being one of the first pioneering entrepreneurs on the web. In this episode Nova shares with us his background as a [...]

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BG 086: How Did Descartes Die?

2008-09-01

Episode Description: Join us this week as we speak with Dr. Peter Grossenbacher, director of the Consciousness Laboratory at Naropa University, about the difference between Eastern and Western modes of inquiry, sensory awareness practice, and of the importance of contemplative education. Peter ties together the Eastern and Western schools of thought by pointing out that [...]

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BG 085: The Consciousness Laboratory

2008-08-25

Episode Description: Join us this week as we speak with Dr. Peter Grossenbacher, director of the Consciousness Laboratory at Naropa University, about his research on meditation and contemplative spirituality. Along with finding out about the specific work that Dr. Grossenbacher is engaged in in the Consciousness Lab, listen in as we ask we ask such [...]

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BG 084: Dream Practices: Comparing Dream Yoga and Lucid Dreaming

2008-08-18

Episode Description: B. Alan Wallace joins to us to compare and contrast two fantastic dream practices. One comes from the Tibetan Buddhist tradition, going all the way back to India, with the yogi Naropa. This practice, called Dream Yoga, is a type of insight practice which utilizes the dream state in order to wake up. [...]

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BG 083: The Yogas of Dream and Sleep

2008-08-11

Episode Description: Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, an esteemed teacher in the Bon Buddhist tradition of Tibet, joins us again to continue describing the importance of dream yoga as part of the larger system of the 6 yogas of Naropa. Rinpoche guides us through the three different kinds of dreams that we can have, including samsaric dreams, [...]

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BG 082: Sleep as a Spiritual Journey

2008-08-04

Episode Description: “Look to your experience in dreams to know how you will fare in death. Look to your experience of sleep to discover whether or not you are truly awake.” – Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche, an esteemed teacher in the Bon Buddhist tradition of Tibet, joins us to discuss the importance of [...]

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BG 081: The Inevitable Tension: Going Deep vs. Spreading Wide

2008-07-28

Episode Description: Melvin McLeod, Editor-in-Chief of the Shambhala Sun and Buddhadharma magazines, concludes his conversation with us, this time discussing the inevitable tensions that arise in Buddhist media. These tensions center primarily around going deep vs. spreading wide. Listen in to hear how these magazines find the middle ground between condemning Buddhism to the irrelevant [...]

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BG 080: Peering Under the Hood of Buddhist Media

2008-07-21

Episode Description: “Buddhism offers the most profound critique or criticism of life imaginable in it’s analysis of the role of ego, and of the nature of samsara, as well as in its basic doctrine of emptiness. There could hardly be a more profound critique of life then to say that neither your nor it exists.” [...]

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BG 079: Existential Threats and Risks: We Can’t Escape Impermanence!

2008-07-14

Episode Description: “At any moment the Yellowstone caldera could blow up, wipe out %99 of the life on the surface of the planet, and probably all humans, and in our last minutes the degree of equanimity with which we face that prospect is the test of our dharmic fortitude and wisdom.” – James Hughes In [...]

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BG 078: Cyborg Buddhas & Techno-Utopian Pure Lands!

2008-07-07

Episode Description: With radical advances in science in technology would it be possible for us to turn our world into a so-called, “Buddha Realm” or would it be more likely that we create some sort of God Realm, where awakening is discouraged because the conditions are so radically pleasant? And how specifically could these advances [...]

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BG 077: Transhumanism and the Authentic Self

2008-06-30

Episode Description: “The longer our lives, the more we’ll have a chance to see that there’s no self living them.” – James Hughes What is Transhumanism and how is it related to Buddhist practice? Will technology enable us to radically extend our lifespans, help us control our thoughts and emotions, and bring about the potential [...]

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BG 076: Rebirth and Suffering: How Important Are They?

2008-06-23

Episode Description: “I do not believe in an after life, although I am bringing a change of underwear.” – Woody Allen The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche joins us again, this time to discuss the importance of the teachings of rebirth in the Western context. He also gives many detailed suggestions on how to work with suffering [...]

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BG 075: The Best Preparation for Dying Well is Living Well

2008-06-16

Episode Description: The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche is the only Rinpoche we know who owns and uses a Blackberry! Rinpoche shares with us the different ways that he has adopted modern technology into the work that he does and into his teaching style. We also speak with Rinpoche about his most recent book, which explores the [...]

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BG 074: Analytical Meditation: Going Beyond Coffee Table Dharma

2008-06-09

Episode Description: The Dzogchen Ponlop Rinpoche, one of the foremost teachers in the Nyingma and Kagyu schools of Tibetan Buddhism, joins us to discuss his efforts in creating a genuinely Western form of the traditional shedra tract of Buddhist learning. This traditional scholastic training system is being translated and slightly altered for Westerners so that [...]

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BG 073: The Darker Side of Zen: Institutions Defining Reality

2008-06-02

Episode Description: What the teacher really offers the student is literally living proof that all this talk and the seemingly impossible goals [of Zen] can be realized in this lifetime.” – Baker Roshi in the Introduction to Zen Mind, Begineer’s Mind Stuart Lachs, who for many decades has studied Zen from within and from without, [...]

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BG 072: Zen Masters: Dressing the Donkey with Bells and Scarves

2008-05-26

Episode Description: Long-time American Zen practitioner Stuart Lachs has spent some 40 years practicing Zen. First with Suzuki Roshi at the Tassajara Monastery in California and then with Eido Shimano Roshi, Walter Nowick, and finally with Ch’an Master Sheng-yen. In all of these communities Stuart ran up against strange and unfortunate dynamics playing out between [...]

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BG 071: Mind Like Space

2008-05-19

Episode Description: Our conversation with Susan Piver continues this week as we wrap our discussion on the relationship between meditation and writing. We also also explore the role that intention plays in offering or marketing the dharma. Finally, we wrap up the conversation by touching in on personality theory and productivity. Find out which enneagram [...]

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BG 070: Susan Piver: The Fearless Writer

2008-05-12

Episode Description: When Susan Piver’s book, The Hard Questions, hit the top of the NY Times Bestsellers list (and stayed there) she decided that she needed to deepen her practice immediately. Listen in this week as speak with Susan about her journey as a popular author and Buddhist practitioner. And if you have an interest [...]

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BG 069: Every Generation Creates the Dharma Anew

2008-04-28

Episode Description: The Round Table Geeks continue their exploration of Whitney Joiner’s article, “Dive-bar Dharma”. In a flurry of paradox, perspectives, humor, and exploration they tackle questions of integrating dharma into life, the Buddhist secular movements, contemplative practices in other traditions, and the historical and sociological dimensions of Dharma’s spread to the West. We hope [...]

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BG 068: Dive-bar Dharma: Making it Fresh or Sensationalizing it?

2008-04-21

Episode Description: Join the Geeks of the Round Table as we discuss an article published on Salon.com entitled, Dive-bar Dharma. The geeks explore several questions, sparked by this article, including whether or not we should update ancient metaphors with more contemporary metaphors? Also of interest is how far teachers should go in adapting the teachings [...]

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BG 067: Everything Arises in the Mind of the Yogi

2008-04-11

Episode Description: Real creative expression, to me, is a process of discovery … It’s entering the mystery - Daido Roshi John Daido Loori, Roshi continues his discussion with Robert Spellman on the intersection between contemporary art and contemplative awareness. The two teachers share revealing stories about their understanding of the importance of meditative awareness in [...]

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BG 066: Zen Mountain Monastery: Zen and the Arts

2008-04-04

Episode Description: John Daido Loori, Roshi abbot of the Zen Mountain Monastery in NY and well-known Buddhist author, joins us to discuss the history and development of his teaching, especially with regards to the key role that Art plays in Zen practice. Naropa University teacher Robert Spellman joins us as guest host to ask Daido [...]

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BG 065: The Three Faces of Spirit: Where is Awareness Locating Itself?

2008-03-27

Episode Description: Where does awareness tend to locate itself? And how is this important in our experience and understanding of the Buddhist path of awakening? This week Diane Musho Hamilton—Zen sensei and Big Mind lineage holder—joins us again to discuss the importance of what Ken Wilber calls the three faces of spirit. Using this powerful [...]

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BG 064: Discover Yourself as a Perspective Taking Being

2008-03-20

Episode Description: Diane Musho Hamilton, Zen sensei and Big Mind lineage holder, joins us to discuss her personal story on the path of awakening. From experiencing the death of several friends at a young age, to studying with Chogyam Trunpga in the mid-80s, to becoming the first lineage holder of a unique new spiritual process [...]

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BG 063: Unwavering Samadhi: Meditative Achievement and Its Impact in the World

2008-03-07

Episode Description: We continue our discussion with Buddhist teacher and author, B. Alan Wallace, on the impact of the recently completed Shamatha Project. Dr. Wallace shares the astounding levels of concentration that were achieved during the 3-month retreats he led and tells us more about the achievement of shamatha. Find out how deep the students [...]

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BG 062: Reverberations from The Shamatha Project

2008-03-07

Episode Description: B Alan Wallace, author of “The Attention Revolution” and “Embracing Mind”, joins us to discuss the initial results from The Shamatha Project—one of the most extensive studies on the long-term benefits of meditation practice ever conducted. The terabytes of data that were collected during the course of the retreat-study included physiological and psychological [...]

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BG 061: Buddhist Magic: What is Possible with the Powers?

2008-02-28

Episode Description: Have you ever considered what it would be like to cultivate, what in the Buddhist tradition are called the siddhis or magical powers? Buddhist magic is an endlessly fascinating topic, and in this episode we speak with Daniel Ingram, one of our favorite guests here on Buddhist Geeks, about the powers. We cover [...]

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BG 060: Geeks of the Round Table â„¢

2008-02-23

Episode Description: The Geeks of the Round Tableâ„¢ continue their discussion on the Big Mind process and the criticisms from Zen teacher Brad Warner, in his article Big Mindâ„¢ is a Big Loadâ„¢ of Horse Shit (link goes to SuicideGirls, an alt porn site). The geeks focus on these criticisms which include charging for the [...]

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BG 059: McZen: A Double Satori with Cheese

2008-02-17

Episode Description: This is an experimental dialogue called Geeks of the Round Table. In this session we speak with two young Buddhist practitioners in a round-table format about Brad Warner’s criticisms of the Big Mind process, in an article he wrote called, Big Mindâ„¢ is a Big Loadâ„¢ of Horse Shit . We are joined [...]

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BG 058: Crazy Wisdom Saves the Day!

2008-02-08

Episode Description: Crazy Wisdom, a phrase coined by the late Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, is used to describe uncommon, unique, and even wild ways of sharing wisdom. Wes Nisker, insight meditation teacher, shares with us his connection to the crazy wisdom teachers of the past, including such spiritual teachers as Jesus, Rumi, Kabir, and Benkei as [...]

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BG 057: Science as the Western Wisdom Tradition

2008-02-01

Episode Description: “The true value of a human being is determined primarily by the measure and the sense in which he has attained to liberation from the self.” – Einstein One would think that the above quote would come from one of the East’s great sages, but instead it comes from one of the last [...]

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BG 056: Insight Dialogue: Extending Meditation into Mutuality

2008-01-25

Episode Description: What would it be like if we were able to extend the silence & clarity of the meditative mind into our relationships? Would this impact how we listen, what we say, and even how we perceive reality? Gregory Kramer, teacher of a unique interpersonal meditation called Insight Dialogue, claims that it does this [...]

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BG 055: Atto, Zepto, and Yacto: The Buddhist Marx Brothers

2008-01-18

Episode Description: We speak to insight meditation teacher and comedian Wes Nisker about humor, enlightenment, and the way that the scientific vision has impacted and informed the teachings of the Buddha. Quoting Wavy Gravy, Wes comments that, “If you don’t have a sense of humor, it just isn’t that funny.” Wes, who also has a [...]

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BG 054: Interpersonal Meditation: Awakening as Relational Beings

2008-01-11

Episode Description: Gregory Kramer, teacher of an interpersonal meditation practice called Insight Dialogue (and author of a book with the same title) joins us to explore the question of, “What is the path of awakening, when we realize that we are essentially relational beings?” We discuss his early path as a meditator and the later [...]

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BG 053: Virtual Zen: Dropping Here and There

2007-12-18

Episode Description: Jundo Cohen, student of Gudo Wafu Nishijima Roshi, and abbot of the almost completely virtual Treeleaf Zendo joined us to discuss his virtual sangha. Jundo formed the community to meet the needs of those people who were living in highly isolated situations, or were too sick or elderly to continue to sit with [...]

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BG 052: The Spiritual Radical

2007-12-12

Episode Description: We continue our discussion with spiritual teacher and dharma punk Noah Levine, and cover several more areas of interest, including the traditional Theravada ideal of enlightenment. We also discuss what it looks like to live as a Spiritual Rebel, Revolutionary, and finally a Spiritual Radical. Finally, Noah shares some of his thoughts on [...]

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BG 051: Becoming Whole: Lineage and Gender in American Buddhism

2007-12-12

Episode Description: Finishing up our discussion with scholar-practitioner, and Shambhala Acharaya, Judith Simmer-Brown we explore two very important issues for Western Buddhists: lineage and gender. Judith shares her take on the importance of lineage for new teachers, explaining the role of an Acharaya, and discussing the need to connect strongly to the roots of the [...]

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BG 050: Being Human and Suffering Less Along the Way

2007-12-12

Episode Description: Noah Levine, Buddhist teacher and dharma punk, shares the intimate details of his early lifestyle of punk rock, drugs, and jail and his climb out of a harmful way of living that was facilitated in part by meditation practice. For more details about his journey check out his spiritual memoir, Dharma Punx. He [...]

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BG 049: The Scholar-Practitioner: Joining Theory and Practice

2007-12-03

Episode Description: Judith Simmer-Brown, a professor of Religious Studies at Naropa University and authorized teacher in the Shambhala tradition speaks with us about the coming together of theoretical study and meditation practice in the context of academia—what professor Charles Prebish calls the “scholar-practitioner”. She shares with us the historical precedents for this movement in America, [...]

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BG 048: Monasteries as the Conscience of Society

2007-12-01

Episode Description: We continue our discussion with the Venerable Thubten Chodron, a long time Western Buddhist Nun, and founder of Sravasti Abbey in Washington State. In this dialogue she shares with us the vision behind Sravasti Abbey, discussing the benefits of living the monastic life and using community life as a means to continue to [...]

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BG 047: Marketing Mindfulness to the Youth

2007-11-21

Episode Description: In the second half of our conversation with Buddhist teacher Diana Winston we go on to discuss the various ways that Buddhism and more secular mindfulness practices are being marketed to youth. The mindfulness movement itself seems to be one of the most promising of these different methods, as does the promulgation of [...]

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BG 046: Reformatting the Hard Disk of the Mind

2007-11-16

Episode Description: Thubten Chodron, a long time Western Buddhist Nun, and founder of Sravasti Abbey in Washington State, took time with us to discuss her work as a teacher, including all of the work she has done with students online. She shared with us the potential down-sides of having a purely digital relationship with a [...]

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BG 045: What Happens to the Dharma when the Boomers Die Out?

2007-11-09

Episode Description: Diana Winston, insight meditation teacher and author, took a break from a busy day of work from the UCLA’s Mindful Awareness Research Center to join us in a discussion on Buddhism and youth. After sharing some insight into what her most recent work at UCLA is aiming to accomplish, Diana explored the question [...]

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BG 044: Bodh Gaya is “The City”

2007-11-02

Episode Description: In our final segment with Buddhist teacher and author Sharon Salzberg, she starts off by describing what it’s is like doing a retreat in the Insight Meditation tradition. She includes information about the daily structure of the retreat and also discusses what it is like to be in a silent retreat environment. Gwen [...]

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BG 043: Neuroscience and The Enlightenment Machine

2007-10-29

Episode Description: In this episode we spoke with neuroscientist and Buddhist meditator Daniel Rizzuto. Vince and he discussed a number of topics including the link between contemplative and scientific methodologies, some of the potential technologies that could emerge for the neuroscientific research, including Daniel’s favorite, an empathic training device. Daniel also shared some of the [...]

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BG 042: From the Point of View of Insight Meditation

2007-10-22

Episode Description: In the 2nd part of our conversation with Sharon Salzberg, Gwen Bell speaks to her about a number of fascinating subjects. They begin with Sharon’s experience writing for secular publications, such as Oprah’s O Magazine and her experience writing her most recent book, Faith: Trusting Your Own Deepest Experience. They also discuss some [...]

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BG 041: Sharon Salzberg on Now and Then

2007-10-15

Episode Description: Sharon Salzberg co-founded the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Mass., when she was twenty-three. In this episode Salzberg shares some of the insights that she’s discovered along the way, telling stories in a way that will make them accessible to new and seasoned practitioners alike. May they illuminate your day, your car ride [...]

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BG 040: How Do You Sell the Dharma?

2007-10-08

Episode Description: In our final segment with meditation instructor Ethan Nichtern, he shares his perspective on selling the dharma, transforming culture, the Shambhala tradition, and the need for more dharma teachers who aren’t necessarily enlightened. This is part 3 of a three-part series. Listen to Part 1: What Did Jessica Alba Eat for Breakfast? & [...]

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BG 039: More on Tibetan Studies at Naropa

2007-10-01

Episode Description: In this episode, Ryan continues his conversation with Troy Omafray and Cory Leistikow, two of his fellow classmates in Naropa University’s MA Indo-Tibetan Studies program. They discuss requirements of the program including Nitartha Institute, dathun, and Tibetan language. This is part 2 of a two-part series. Listen to Part 1: Tibetan Buddhist Studies [...]

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BG 038: Buddhism & Money: Does Priceless Mean it’s Free?

2007-09-24

Episode Description: In the 2nd part of our conversation with author, artist, and meditation instructor Ethan Nichtern we deal with the slightly off-limits topic of spirituality and money. Ethan shares his perspective on what Right Livelihood ought to look like in a market economy, where the Buddhist teachings are as valuable as many other services. [...]

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BG 037: Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Naropa University

2007-09-17

Episode Description: In this episode, Ryan chats with Troy Omafray and Cory Leistikow, two of his fellow classmates in Naropa University’s MA Indo-Tibetan Studies program. They discuss the nature of the courses, their personal experience, and what to expect if you decide to pursue the program. This is part 1 of a two-part series. Listen [...]

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BG 036: What Did Jessica Alba Eat for Breakfast?

2007-09-10

Episode Description: Ethan Nichtern, recently published author, meditation teacher and founder of the ID Project, met with Gwen Bell in Manhattan at the Om Yoga Studio. He talks in this podcast about how, in the 21st century, we’re coming to Buddhism because we’re already very “hooked in” to the world and want to work more [...]

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BG 035: Theory, Yoga, & Art

2007-09-03

Episode Description: In our last segment with art and meditation professor Robert Spellman he shares with us a key distinction between the theoretical and the yogic and how that important distinction relates to artistic practice. This is part 3 of a three-part series. Listen to Part 1: Dharmic Throw Up & Part 2: An Antidote [...]

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BG 034: An Antidote to Seriousness

2007-08-27

Episode Description: In this episode Robert Spellman delves into the liberating nature of humor and laughter. He also touches on the question of whether a genuine spiritual practice leads to a diminishing of one’s personality. This is part 2 of a three-part series. Listen to Part 1: Dharmic Throw Up & Part 3: Theory, Yoga, [...]

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BG 033: Lacking Leadership, Lacking Conceptuality

2007-08-20

Episode Description: In our final segment, speaking with Hokai Sobol and Daniel Ingram the conversation wraps up with a criticism of what is missing from some of the Buddhist leadership in the West, as well as the issues surrounding conceptuality and non-conceptuality. This is part 3 of a three-part series. Listen to Part 1: Croatia, [...]

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BG 032: Dharmic Throw Up

2007-08-13

Episode Description: This week, we had the great pleasure of speaking with teacher and artist Robert Spellman, who was a long-time student of Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche. In the first part of the series Robert shares several personal vignettes and also introduces a somewhat (w)retched metaphor for understanding the development of the path. Sounds tasty huh!? [...]

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BG 031: Are you Stuck? Get Unstuck!

2007-08-06

Episode Description: In the 2nd part of this interview Vince, Daniel, and Hokai continue to explore the territory of meditation and psychology, discusses the mastery of meditation techniques, and touch on how people can get unstuck if they are lost in the content and stories of their minds. This is part 2 of a three-part [...]

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BG 030: Croatia, Alabama, and Colorado Collide!

2007-07-30

Episode Description: In this episode Vince Horn speaks with two of Buddhist Geeks most active users: Daniel Ingram and Hokai Sobol. They discuss the reasons that people get into Buddhist practice, what really inspires one to “go for it”, and what hinders one from doing so. They finish off their conversation touching on the differences [...]

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BG 029: Mass Producing Meditators

2007-07-23

Episode Description: In this episode Vince talks with Theo Horesh and Duff McDuffee, two S.N. Goenka practitioners. They discuss the effects of what can be called the mass production of meditators. They also explore the differences in using a single technique or multiple techniques for realization. This is part 2 of a two-part series. Listen [...]

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BG 028: Entrepregurus and the Meditation Factory

2007-07-16

Episode Description: In this episode Vince interviews Theo Horesh and Duff McDuffee, two S.N. Goenka practitioners. They discuss the techniques of the Goenka tradition and how one might see it as a meditation factory. In the next episode, they discuss the power of the Goenka approach and possible criticisms of the practice. This is part [...]

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BG 027: Are you Stalking Us?!

2007-07-09

Episode Description: In this episode, the three geeks process listener feedback about podcasts and blog posts. They also discuss the future of podcasts on Buddhist Geeks and creating more dynamic conversations. Transcript: Transcript coming soon…

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BG 026: Buddhist Geeks Highlights

2007-07-02

Episode Description: In this episode, the three geeks gather at the Falling Fruit studio and reminisce about the first six months of Buddhist Geeks. Each discuss their favorite podcasts and posts. They also plug the new hot and sexy Buddhist Geeks t-shirts. In the next episode the geeks will discuss feedback from the sangha and [...]

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BG 025: It’s Like Phil Donahue!

2007-06-28

Episode Description: At 87, Nishijima Sensei, Brad Warner’s teacher, loves the fact that he can blog. In this episode, Gwen and Brad discuss the pros and cons of using the “tech factor” to spread the Dharma. In the comment section, a few possible questions for further exploration: How important is the accumulation of “Information” in [...]

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BG 024: With the Light Comes the Dark

2007-06-25

Episode Description: In our final podcast with insight meditation teacher John Travis, he describes the training that new teachers are going through in his tradition. He also touches on the subject of enlightenment, the shadow, and our tendency to try and bypass the human condition. This is part 3 of a three-part series. Listen to [...]

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BG 023: Feeding the Beast

2007-06-18

Episode Description: In this episode, Warner talks about excited states like anger, the trouble with online community, and our attachment to ego. How do we “reinforce the Self” and how do we begin to work with our anger (trigger work? just noticing?)? Two questions Brad and Gwen talk about that we invite you to discuss [...]

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BG 022: The Dualistic Conundrum: Insight Meditation and Primordial Awareness

2007-06-11

Episode Description: In the next episode with Insight Meditation teacher John Travis, he discusses how both the gradual and sudden schools of enlightenment fit in with the practice of vipassana meditation. Find out how this teacher has resolved this paradox in his own teaching and practice. This is part 2 of a three-part series. Listen [...]

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BG 021: Buddhism is Something that Old Folks Do

2007-06-04

Episode Description: Anyone that’s had the chance to study with Brad Warner knows he’s young(ish), funny and knowledgeable about the Dharma. Warner’s new book, Sit Down & Shut Up, chronicles the life and times of Dogen, author of the Shobogenzo. The book simultaneously tracks Warner’s own career as a punk rock bassist and Zen teacher, [...]

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BG 020: Leave the Pot on the Stove

2007-05-28

Episode Description: In this final episode with Vince Horn, he continues to share his reflections and experiences of a two-month meditation retreat he recently completed. In this podcast, he discusses the relationship between dharma study and mindfulness practice. Vince also describes his experience of leaving retreat and transitioning back into the relative world. Finally, he [...]

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BG 019: On Being a Dharma Bum

2007-05-21

Episode Description: In the first part of our interview with Insight Meditation teacher John Travis, he shares the story of his many years of practice and seeking in India, as well as the time after that in which he had to bring what he had learned back to America. We hope you enjoy this personal [...]

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BG 018: The Vipassana Vendetta

2007-05-14

Episode Description: In this episode, Vincent Horn continues to share his reflections and experiences of a two-month meditation retreat he recently completed. In this podcast, he discusses doing karma yoga during long-term retreats, state chasing in meditation and suffering and death in practice. We hope you enjoy this conversation with this insightful Buddhist Geek. This [...]

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BG 017: Genpo “Big Mind’s” Gwen

2007-05-07

Episode Description: In this final segment with Genpo Roshi, Gwen Bell is guided through the Big Mind process. This final portion of the interview gives listeners a rare opportunity to listen to the Big Mind experience happen unscripted and raw. An intimate conversation and a glimpse into one Geek’s practice, beliefs and experience. This is [...]

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BG 016: Vince Horn on Taking the Two Month Plunge

2007-04-30

Episode Description: In this episode Ryan Oelke interviews fellow resident geek, Vince Horn, who shares his reflections and experiences of a two-month mediation retreat he recently completed. In this first podcast, Vince talks about the role of extended retreat in his personal practice, the nuts and bolts of preparing for a long retreat, and the [...]

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BG 015: Is Zen Enough?

2007-04-23

Episode Description: In this segment, Genpo Roshi goes into an eloquent description of the role that Big Mind process, zazen, and koan practice can play in a more whole and integrated Zen training. He also touches on the develop of the spiritual practitioner, and his understanding of how one can progress through this developmental territory. [...]

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BG 014: A Crisis of Curiosity

2007-04-16

Episode Description: In this episode Gwen Bell interviews Anne McQuade, a current student of Genpo Roshi and regular reader of our site. A large part of their conversation focuses on a controversial article that Brad Warner—who will be one of our future guests—published on suicidegirls.com (an alternative porn site), criticizing Genpo Roshi and the Big [...] …

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BG 013: Genpo Roshi on Big Mind

2007-04-09

Episode Description: In this episode Gwen Bell interviews Genpo Roshi, a Western Zen teacher and lineage holder of both the Soto and Rinzai traditions. He is also the author of four books, as well as an upcoming release, Big Mind, Big Heart. In this epsidoe Genpo Roshi discusses Big Mind, his unique method of introducing [...]

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BG 012: Take Your Seat: The Importance of Boundaries in Practice

2007-04-02

Episode Description: Fleet Maull talks about how we work with the boundaries of the self and of the heart in the maitri, bodhichitta and tonglen practices. This is part 2 of a two-part series. Listen to Part 1, Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Fleet Maull on Plunge Experiences. Episode Links: Peacemaker Institute Dharma in [...]

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BG 011: Models of Enlightenment

2007-03-26

Episode Description: In our final conversation with Daniel Ingram he goes on to explore various “models of enlightenment” and weighs the relative value of these different models, which we carry around with us unconsciously. Daniel also tries to answer the all-important question of, “How does one practically go about becoming enlightened?” Dive in and enjoy [...]

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BG 010: Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Fleet Maull on Plunge Experiences

2007-03-19

Episode Description: In this episode, Gwen Bell interviews Buddhist teacher Sensei Fleet Maull. Fleet recently spent a month on retreat with Roshi Bernie Glassman and the Zen Peacemakers in Massuchusetts, where he became a fully empowered Zen teacher. Fleet teaches at Naropa University and leads weekly meditation sessions there. His teachings are accessible to a [...]

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BG 009: Enlightened Teachers

2007-03-12

Episode Description: In this episode, with Theravada teacher Daniel Ingram, he breaches the taboo of enlightenment by discussing the enlightenment of other teachers. Not only that but he argues for a more transparent approach to enlightenment within certain teaching circles, in hopes that enlightenment can become more attainable. Listen and see why he thinks this [...]

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BG 008: Where are all the Western Rinpoches?

2007-03-05

Episode Description: In this episode, Phil Stanley discusses lineage in Western Buddhism, the lack of western teachers, what it will take to develop more qualified individuals. Phil notes that we are in an awkward phase in Western Buddhism, where we have several intermediary teachers and few fully empowered and authorized lineage holders. He discusses the [...]

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BG 007: The Shamatha Project

2007-02-26

Episode Description: In 2007 Dr. Wallace will be leading a joint scientific project named The Shamatha Project. A battery of studies will be conducted in two 3-month meditation retreats (one retreat is a control group), and the results will be submitted to the most prestigious academic journals. In our final podcast with Alan Wallace he [...]

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BG 006: You Can Do It!

2007-02-19

Episode Description: We’re joined this week by Daniel Ingram, MD, an authorized teacher in the Theravada tradition and an avid fan of out-right honesty with regards to the spiritual path. In this episode Daniel (aka “Dharma Dan”) shares some of his more formative experiences as a meditator, touches on some of the Buddhist maps of [...]

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BG 005: We’re Not the Cheerleaders of Buddhism

2007-02-12

Episode Description: In our second episode with professor Phil Stanley, Phil discusses Buddhist lifestyles in the West and how our approach to practice differs from traditional Eastern practitioners. He addresses our relationship to retreats and monasticism, as well as the difficulties Westerners face in finding a livelihood that supports practice. Phil also discusses controversy over [...]

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BG 004: Get a PhD in Contemplative Science

2007-02-05

Episode Description: In our second episode with Alan Wallace, he presents a new model for “professional” contemplatives. Instead of trying to transplant the monastic model to the West, Dr. Wallace suggests that contemplation become an actual profession. Just as a neuroscientist would go to school to get a PhD and then spend 40+ hour a [...]

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BG 003: Phil Stanley on the Development of Western Buddhism

2007-01-29

Episode Description: In our first episode with scholar-practitioner Phil Stanley, professor at Naropa University, he chats with us about how he became a practitioner and his passion for Buddhist study. Phil shares his thoughts on the importance of intellectual study, as well as what changes he sees Buddhism experiencing as it takes root in the [...]

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BG 002: Alan Wallace on Achieving Shamatha

2007-01-22

Episode Description: In our first interview featuring scholar-practitioner B. Alan Wallace, we asked Dr. Wallace to give us the low-down on his spiritual journey, as well as describe the stages of deepening relaxation and vividness of attention leading to the culmination of an attainment he calls shamatha. This is Part 1 of a three-part series. [...]

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BG 001: Meet the Geeks

2007-01-14

Episode Description: In our 1st episode, “Meet the Geeks” you’ll hear the three founding members of Buddhist Geeks discussing the vision behind this project. By weaving together snippets of a larger conversation this podcast should give you a sense of what this project is about and how you can contribute to it. The following episodes [...]

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Buddhist Geeks

Buddhist Geeks is a weekly audio show that presents groundbreaking interviews and discussions with Buddhist teachers, scholars, and advanced practitioners. Combining ancient wisdom with modern technology, Buddhist Geeks aims to catalyze a community of practitioners committed to awakening. Discover the emerging face of Buddhism.

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