This is part 2 of an interview that took place on November 23, 2014. My guest was Dr. Greg Goode. Greg Goode is long time student of Vedanta, Direct Path of Shri Atmananda, and Buddhism. Greg has a doctorate in philosophy. His books include Nondualism in Western Philosophy, Standing as Awareness, The Direct Path, A User Guide, and Emptiness and Joyful Freedom (with Tomas Sander). His website is www.heartofnow.com and his books can be accessed at www.non-dualitypress.org/search?q=goode. Greg’s married to May and lives in New York where he holds down an intense full time job with the it dept of a major law firm.
In the first part of this interview which can be heard at nonduality.org we talked about the philosophical approach to nonduality, involvements in the world of nonduality, advaita vedanta, and the direct path teachings.
Part two of this interview begins where Greg left off last time leading us in a guided practice intended to locate where we feel we are within the body. This is so important because it sets the foundation for the rest of our conversation and will help you understand both direct path and emptiness teachings discussed in this broadcast, but most importantly you're gonna get to know who you are, and who greg is. Here's part two of my interview with Dr. Greg Goode on Nonduality Talk.
Tracks and time cues:
0:00 - 11:44 Introduction to the show. Opening music, Byron Bay, by Prosad. Greg leads us in a guided imagery intended to locate the core of one's identity as a contraction or a phenomenon within the body. Having located this phenomenon of identity, Greg proceeds to demonstrate that, "You have not found yourself as a phenomenon. You are that to which the phenomenon arises." Musical interlude: "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning
11:44 - 14:49 Anything phenomenal can't be that to which they appear, namely the witnessing awareness. Investigating phenomena from the worldly to they bodily, the mental, to the subtle psychological. Musical interlude: "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning
14:49 - 16:17 The nature of the witness as that to which phenomena appear to. You are the nature of all. Musical interlude: "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning
16:17 - 21:21 Everything is understood as not you and that is the end of suffering and inquiry. The witness contains the seeds of its own deconstruction. Love aspect of the witness. Eventual disintegration of the thin witness. Musical interlude: "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning
21:21 - 23:26 The lower, more opaque witness discussed. The witness thins out as your inquiry proceeds. Musical interlude: "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning.
23:26 - 28:36 Do you actually wake up or is it just an arising in the same way the body is an appearance to the witnessing awareness? Musical break: Song by Bill East: Am I This Present Awareness. Questioning assumptions. Musical break: Song by Bill East: Am I Imagining That I'm Doing Something?
28:36 - 38:34 Buddhist emptiness teachings introduced. Witnessing awareness or Direct Path may not resonate with some people. Emptiness teachings don't require a "big daddy awareness." They show the extent to which cultural conditions influence us and shape our identity. Looking at divergent views about things can help us de-solidify our own beliefs about the thing. Why diversity is a good emptiness teaching. If you feel something is inherent then what does it mean when it changes, even while the sense of conviction is the same? Existence is not self-sufficient or inherent. Diversity is a good emptiness teaching. Musical interlude.
38:34 - 49:04 Hallmark of emptiness teachings. Advaita compared. Classes of dependencies. Emptiness teachings applied to the existence of a table. The deep seeing that the table is not there on its own but depends on a network of relationships is the realization of emptiness. This realization is nonduality in the sense that there is no separateness between pairs of opposites, yet conventional existence plays out. Dalai Lama's school and approach toward communicating emptiness. Tuning into the sense of inherent existence, looking for the inherent self it points to. Failure to find it is the realization of the emptiness of the self. The empty self realizes emptiness. Musical break.
49:04 - 54:16 Enriching the emptiness teachings. Greg's emptiness and media group in which topics in popular culture are viewed in entirely ways which would loosen up notions commonly associated with topics in popular culture. Example of I Love Lucy and Dracula stories. The point is to inspire the ceasing of treasuring one's opinion.
54:16 Oops! I announced that one of the songs was Love Minus Zero (No Limit) by Bob Dylan, however it was replaced by That's Alright Mama, by Elvis Presley, which I thought more accurately depicted emptiness, since the song is associated with the beginning of rock 'n' roll and also because the line "That's alright mama," seems like an emptiness motto, if there could be such a thing. Because how could something not be alright, other than in a relative, conventional sense? Closing music, I Am Free, by Prosad.
Our opening and closing music is by Prosad from the Trance Sitar album. Also featured were "Chinese Twilight" by Klaus Schønning, Am I This Present Awareness, and Am I Imagining That I'm Doing Something? by Bill East from his What Am I Really? album. That's Alright Mama, is a live performance by Elvis Presley. And you heard the theme from Star Wars.
- Greg Goode