Paula Crossfield interviews Dr. Svoboda about possession, personality, channeling deities, worshipping ancestors, and cultivating good habits.
Join Dr. Robert Svoboda for two new illuminating online courses. The first course, available now, is about Ganesha, the deity of removing obstacles and grounding. The second course, available this September, is all about our ancestors and how we can work with them. Sign up for these courses and other wisdom offerings at DrSvoboda.Teachable.com
We Are All Possessed
Possession is far more common than you would think. Dr. Svoboda defines it as, “Anything that takes you over and moves you in a particular direction.” Some of these possessions can be positive, like creative flow states, or getting in the zone playing a sport. Most possessions; however, are not as helpful, such as spirits, diseases, parasites, or anxieties. As humans, we are prone to possession. We are possessed by ideas, intoxicants, attitudes, emotions, and even our own personalities.
“I was taught by Vimalananda that it’s a very useful thing to understand that humans find it very easy to be possessed, and need to do what they can to identify those possessions and remove the ones that are not benefitting them so they can be opened to being possessed by things that will benefit them.” – Dr. Robert Svoboda
For an insightful and entertaining talk which further highlights Vimalananda’s relationship with possession and channeling, tune into Ep. 321 of Mindrolling featuring Dr. Svoboda, Duncan Trussell, and Raghu Markus.
Identifying and Working With Possession (14:01)
How can we identify when we are being possessed? Once we do recognize, how can we work with this? Dr. Svoboda invites us to remain consistently mindful, noticing when you are being yourself, compared to when you are not acting like yourself. If in one moment you are acting normally, and then the next you are in a rage, you have been possessed by anger. If you impulsively grab your phone and get lost scrolling in social media, craving and desire have possessed you.
“It’s a useful thing to take some time and examine what you are doing, not to do everything on autopilot, but to pay attention to what you are doing, what you are thinking, how you are relating to your environment, and to see whether you are able to notice that something suddenly takes you and moves you in a direction.” – Dr. Robert Svoboda
Join Ram Dass as he looks behind the scenes of our emotions and personality on Ep. 29 of Here and Now
Possessed by Ancestors (19:49)
Whether or not you believe in an ethereal astral-subtle reality, each one of us has the DNA and epigenetics that we have inherited from our parents. Even after our parents die, a part of their personalities are still within us, and their parents within them. We are very much influenced by this chain of ancestors, which is why, in India, ancestor worship is so prevalent and respected. Dr. Svoboda offers insight into various practices we can offer to our ancestors.
“Anyone can do tarpana, which basically means to appreciate those ancestors, to offer them a few simple things. And again, whether you believe in the astral world or you don’t, the simple act of doing [tarpana] can have a very profound effect on you psychologically on a very deep subconscious or unconscious level.” – Dr. Robert Svoboda