Tami Simon, author of The Dharma of Dogs, returns for a conversation about the relationships we form with our animals and the wisdom they have to teach us.
The Dharma of Dogs (Opening) – Tami Simon shares her inspiration for writing The Dharma of Dogs, which shares the reflections of spiritual teachers and writers who have found a source of deep truth and practical wisdom beneath the furry surface of our four-legged friends.
“I had a difficult attachment experience in my early life with my mom. Part of the healing that has happened to me through my relationship with my dogs is a healthy sense of physical attachment, a real healthy sense of bonding. Then being able to say it is ok to be “attached” and really grieve, that is the price of loving.” – Tami Simon
Two Worlds (10:40) – Our relationships with our pets can teach us to deal with the grief that comes with loss. They can also teach us to be able to live on more than one plane at the same time.
“I do think that in the depth of loving and losing there is this experience of illumination that is possible; this light, this unconditioned sense of all is well.” – Tami Simon
My Little Buddha (18:20) – In the Tibetan tradition, it is said that awakened ones are able to take rebirth in any form, including that of an animal. Raghu and Tami share their experiences with animals who seem to embody something more than others. They discuss the lessons to be learned from our connection to these unique creatures.
“I like the level of respect and deference that those stories communicate. If we treat an animal, whether it is a dog or a cow, as if it is an enlightened being I think it is the right level of respect to have for our animals.” – Tami Simon
A Grounding Relationship (30:30) – The two talk about the somatic awareness and how animals can help ground us in our bodies and to the earth. Tami talks about reconnecting our awareness at the sense level.
“I think a combination of doing the type of bodywork practices where we reconnect our awareness into the physiological level of experience and hanging out with dogs really helps me so much to get grounded, that sense of connecting to the earth.” – Tami Simon
Attachment and Difficult Decisions (37:00) – Raghu and Tami talk about the intersection of euthanasia and Dharma. They discuss the difficulties that come at the end of our pet’s lives and the lessons about attachment that their death has to teach us.