Mindrolling – Raghu Markus – Ep. 162 – The Challenged Inner Explorer

inner explorer

Raghu talks with Be Here Now Millenials, JR Morton and Corey Leonard, about the demise of the contemplative space in the era of smartphones.

They discuss the pros and cons of a device that gives us access to so much, but is changing how we interact with each other and how our brains function. Smartphones are pulling us away from ourselves at an alarming rate, suppressing our inner explorer. What can we do to mitigate their downsides and use them as the tools that they are meant to be?

Show Notes

Growing Up With Tech (Opening) – After introducing Corey and JR, Raghu reads from an interesting article, “The End of Reflection” by Teddy Wayne. Before the age of cell phones finding moments in our life was difficult enough. Now we fill every spare moment with this technology. Neuroplasticity plays a big role in how smartphones affect us, but it is a double-edged sword.

Corey shares his experience growing up in the pre-smartphone world and experiencing the shift mid-life. He describes the quick change in how his peers socialized and communicated once it was in their lives. Experiencing himself, how easy it is to get caught up in all the stimuli and easy gratification the device offers.

JR offers his perspective as someone who grew up more in the culture of the cell phone and social media. He shares his first moment of awareness that his cellphone addiction was affecting his relationships.

Mindfulness and Technology (23:30) – JR and Corey talk a little about mindfulness. What it means to them and how smartphone and social media addiction play into it. Raghu shares perspectives on mindfulness from Ram Dass and Gurdjieff.

Losing the “I” (29:20) -“When you trace the ego, you come to the self” – Ramana Maharshi. JR brings up a great Ramana Maharshi quote which is exactly who Raghu was thinking about after reading this article. This sparks Raghu’s memory of first going to Ramana Maharshi’s ashram in India. Raghu gives us an inspired history of Ramana Maharshi’s facing death and losing his “I”.

In India, Raghu has a Baba friend who has figured out how to use a cellphone without letting it pull him away from the moment. He uses it as an extension of himself to speak with the outside world but has no attachment whatsoever.

Use It Right (44:00) – Raghu drives home the importance of taking the first step of being in the moment by raising self-awareness. The three discuss the dichotomy of using this potentially disruptive technology for the good, to spread positive and constructive content.

JR shares techniques that he uses to be mindful of his smartphone usage. How creating a space for mindfulness is important to him to put him where he wants to be.   

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Image via Bruce Rolff