Watch the Google Hangout below:
- Sam Harris (In the self-help section) – The gang weighs in on Mr. Harris, and his attempt to make an ‘intellectual case for those skeptical of the whole enterprise’. How should we approach his demand for validation regarding spiritual experiences?
- The Media’s Role – Dave comments on the media’s false claim that the current youth is rejecting all religion, despite all the evidence that points to an increased interest in yoga, meditation, mysticism and psychedelics. Religion can’t be limited to specific guidelines
- Jack discusses his fluctuating stance regarding religion and its practices. In the end, a direct personal experience is difficult to disqualify. Can we definitively answer these questions?
- The Debate Rolls On – There appears to be an endless, ‘Us versus them’, quality to these discussions. The heated debates aren’t even limited to those in opposing fields of study. The good news is that more and more individuals seem to be open to all sides of the argument
- “Self-Help” – Who is really benefiting, and how? These books can sometimes be a distraction from dealing with our true sources of distress
- Adaptive Spirituality – Previous civilizations, with far less knowledge of the working universe, espoused certain religious views in an attempt to understand their role. Many of these belief systems are still at work, though clearly limited in scope. An open and contemplative approach toward the truth is crucial in avoiding dogmatic doctrine. If certain facets are proven to be flawed or unsound then we have to accept, and even embrace, the need for change
- The Real Initiation (Break your head) – Raghu recounts the story of a Maharaji devotee, and his personal encounter with the profound presence of direct experience. It’s a change in vantage point, not a lobotomy
- Judging Faith (Spiritual discrimination) – What about the folks who haven’t experienced the mind melting effects of these mystical encounters? Are they to simply trust those that make these claims? When we calm our mind, through meditation or other practices, our awareness deepens and we are better able to identify with the true Self. From this place, we seem less likely to be fooled or manipulated, in forming beliefs.
- Where Are You Coming From? – Rachael describes her recent experience in India, pointing to the heart-centered nature of the culture, as a whole. To them, family is everything, and this shows in their attitudes and traditions. Unfortunately, this sentiment has somewhat dissipated in the cities, and is beginning to resemble the more fractured relationships that are so predominant in the West
- People Are the Problem – These age-old arguments have been commonplace for as long as civilization has existed. How can we bridge the seemingly endless gap? Practice, practice, practice!
Photo via Metro