Mindrolling – Raghu Markus – Ep. 260 – The Womb of Compassion with Robert Thurman, Duncan Trussell, and Krishna Das

Mindrolling - Raghu Markus - Ep. 260 - The Womb of Compassion

Live from the 2018 “Spring on Maui” retreat, Raghu is joined by Robert Thurman, Krishna Das and Duncan Trussell for a conversation that explores difficult questions around death and embracing the emptiness that comes from the practice of compassion.

Show Notes

Getting Heavy (Opening) – The group talks about the theme of the retreat, No Fear No Death, and reflects on the difficult but necessary act of turning our attention to the realities of suffering, aging, and death. Duncan raises a moral question around death and reincarnation that leads into a discussion about the shortcomings of a  materialist perspective of the world.

“Materialists just don’t want to exist. It makes them feel secure, the idea that our basic reality is non-existence. That is sort of a failsafe place, right? Press the ejection button and – BOOM – you don’t exist, so there is no consequence for what you did in life. That makes our culture so reckless.” – Bob Thurman 

Emptiness: The Womb of Compassion (26:55) – Robert Thurman explains his interpretation of what love really is. He shares one of the favorite expressions of the Dalai Lama which reflects the way that emptiness creates a space for love and compassion to flourish which inspires a reflection from Krishna Das on the quality of unconditional love transmitted by Maharaj-ji.

“The thing about being with Maharaj-ji, being in his presence and that love, was that we were relieved of the responsibility of being our cranky old selves. We were allowed to just let go, we didn’t have to be those people that we were.” –  Krishna Das

Listen to a conversation about love and spiritual practice with Raghu, Duncan, Sharon Salzberg and Davis Nichtern from 2017’s “Spring on Maui” retreat on Ep. 216 of the Mindrolling Podcast

Curbing Our Neuroses (41:15) – How does our self-centered perspective feed into our suffering and neuroses? We close this episode with a look at the role our attachment to our own identity plays in our suffering.

“My guru used to say that we exaggerate our own self-centrality. We identify ourselves as a boundary and the most important person is ourselves. In Tibetan psychology, they call this self-cherishing; but really its self-preoccupation because it could be self-deprecating.” – Robert Thurman


Photo via Mary Godschalk