What Is Meditation? | 11/2/2022 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #02

Two zoom videos spliced together, largely unedited. The hemming and hawing about unfavorable conditions in the podcast audio version is edited out to save listeners time

Listen to the unedited recording: https://join.wisdom.audio/i9PN

We primarily address what meditation actually is while spiraling up, around and back on this topic to also include:

  • Examples of what is and isn’t meditation
  • Mind training
  • Intention
  • Stop being aware exercise
  • Consciousness
  • Awareness
  • Focus
  • Familiarity with the mind
  • Heart qualities
  • Wisdom
  • Aspiration
  • Development
  • Self-help
  • Addressing ego’s yearning for control
  • Vipassana
    • Investigation and inquiry
  • Samatha
    • Con-CENTration
    • Stillness in the eye of the storm vs excluding
    • Western notion of concentration being tight with a lot of effort
    • Jhana
    • Mind spaciousness
    • Pros and Cons of goals and attainments
  • Wendy’s practicing with viewing and responding to retreat organizers canceling and not returning all the deposit
  • Ego:
    • Positive ego
    • Negative ego
    • Superior ego
    • Inferier ego
    • Spiritual ego
  • Responses to the statement “Emotions are thoughts” in Wendy’s discussions with a meditator:
    • Dogs crying tears of joys for their owners after long separation
    • The human animal
    • Labeling emotions vs the actual emotion
    • Overly identifying with thoughts
    • Is hurt and pain a thought?
    • Yogācāra or Chittamatra school of Buddhism
    • Blindspots
    • Theory vs lived experience
    • Involvement of perception
    • Heart quality balancing
  • Wisdom:
    • as capacity to see interrelatedness of everything
    • Everything empty of any inherent quality in and of itself
    • Qualities arise interdependently
  • The ultimate unhappiness of materialism
  • Chögyam Trungpa
    • Spiritual materialism
  • Scoundrels and charlatans in spirituality
  • Conceit
  • Foolishness
  • Social connection and belonging
  • Emotional mirroring

To calendar add and directly join the next live “Meditation Q & A” on November 30, 2022 at 7:30pm Central: https://insig.ht/VmKTuPXyGub or join via downloading the free Wisdom app in your app store or via: https://wisdom.audio where I’m @integratingpresence

*There’s naturally an ongoing open call for meditation (related) questions for the (roughly) monthly “Meditation Q & A” either by the various social media means listed on the site; integratingpresence[at]protonmail.com or just showing up on Insight Timer live or Wisdom App to type/ask live. It’s cliché but there really are no dumb questions.*

Meditation Q & A Series Background

Regular, current and past visitors to Integrating Presence may recall the monthly series “Ask Us Anything” I did with Denny K Miu from August 2020 until January 2022 — partially including and continuing on with Lydia Grace as co-host for awhile until March 2022.

For a few months thereafter I did various Insight Timer live events exploring potential new directions and/or a continuation of the Ask Us Anything format while weaving in other related teachings to these events.

Then, after chats with meditation coach Wendy Nash, it became clear to start a new collaboration similar to “Ask Us Anything” simply and clearly called “Meditation Q & A” especially due to the original intent of the Ask Us Anything’s being “discussions about meditation and related topics.”

Past chats with Wendy:

Audio: What Is Meditation? | 11/2/2022 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #02

The raw unedited YouTube transcription of this podcast:

all right wholeness welcome this is Josh dippold of integratingpresence.com and today again I have uh the lovely Wendy

Nash with me Wendy how’s it going yeah good thank you I think I’m I’m not muted I’m muted

oh I can okay you can hear me it’s going okay it’s just I’ve got the inside timer it

says tap to unmute so I’m going I don’t know what to do but I’ll just if you can hear me this is all good it is yeah

don’t unmute on insight timer um okay all right that’s it’s I’m new to this so yeah to our listener listening

and people other everyone involved um I apologize for my lack of technical

expertise there you go yes and so the other thing is I’ve got

this kind of rig very interestingly we’ve got uh Zoom going on I’ve got my

external microphone getting Wendy’s um audio so it will go into insight

timer because if you look at inside timer it’s just me so um but the video will be available later

and yeah thanks for all who joined last time and yeah here we go so

I guess we we did not get any questions to start off with which is okay because

I have plenty of uh great questions to start us off with and um if anybody

could just that’s here could just chime in in the chat and see they can hear okay and anything like that that would

be great um so the first one is the the most basic

and obvious right and I’ll drop the question in the chat too what is meditation

treat the other day it was just a half one with beginner people can you hear me okay yeah yep great I moved my mic to be

a little bit better okay um and that that’s a common question

and and I’ve been really reflecting what is it because there’s a whole lot of

info out there and people have ideas about it and the I uh one time I had a neighbor and she

said my kind of meditation is reading a book and that is relaxation so that is not

meditation so I can say that is not meditation somebody else I know said I like in my

form of meditation is to take a stroller along the beach and two and I’m like that that’s not

meditation that’s relaxation somebody else said I like to sit on the

bank and watch the waves go by and just let my thoughts you know come and go and

and all the rest and that is also not meditation that is contemplation so

slightly different but similar somebody

um so somebody else said you know I get

when I’m in a bad mood I sit at the piano for a couple of hours and then my thoughts clear

and I come out and I’m like a new person and I said yeah that’s flow that’s not meditation

and he also said you know I used to get really angry in the traffic and when

somebody went past I’d be like right I’m really angry but I’m training myself so

that every time a car goes past I just don’t react and I said that is

meditation because it’s training the mind so even though it’s a very short

moment it’s just an instant it’s this guy driving past he’s really making the

effort to think how do I want to be in the world and bringing Consciousness and awareness to his behavior to retrain the

mind to be less angry so that’s what I would say what about you Josh

you know you think that if I would ask this question and I’m gonna co-host the show I would have a better answer and I

love this answer Wendy how you gave real life examples of working with people of

their definition of meditation and if I can just jump on and amplify the Mind

training aspect of it you know um now if we were to look at the

attention or awareness aspect of meditation in a way the prior examples

um I’ve heard someone say before that we’re always meditating on something meaning that are um it’s probably not a

good definition but our attention is somewhere all the time so we so we can

we can test this out right now with this classic uh example okay I want you to

just stop paying attention for a second just stop being aware just just cut it out and stop it all together okay give a

few seconds like it’s impossible right there’s no

way we can really do that and even when we’re lost in thoughts are entangled there’s some kind of attention going on

and this is a fascinating thing too I’d like to maybe pick up on like but then we kind of like wake out of uh wake up

out of it and then we’re like oh wow I’ve just been lost in thoughts for like five minutes or 10 minutes or who knows

how long or I’ve been just entangled in this emotion I didn’t even really realize it until I’ve got this reference

point of oh yeah that’s not happening now so yes so I think I’ve um I’ve kind of

kind of skirted the question here just a little bit um but if you want to pick back up on

that and before you do I wonder if we we’re just going to go ahead with the

recording here but for whatever reason it’s saying one meditator present in the inside timer room so I’m wondering if

that leads me to feel that it’s something’s not going on do you see a status count

I can just see one meditator here so that’s uh that’s highly unlikely I’ve never really had that before because it

should be two at least it should be you so um if you if you’d like to keep and I’m

going to try this again we’re going to stay on zoom and keep talking but okay do some rejicking

so this is very interesting so this is like what do two meditators do when

there is a technical glitch yes you just and this is the nature of it

you know like we are kind of um stuck in this I think there is no one

here like I don’t I think we’re in a room of our own yes I don’t I don’t get

it there’s really no other option and it seems to be this I wonder if inside timer is having technical difficulties

or what’s going on here but uh anyway it’s it in my dashboard that’s

the only option I hit enter it seems like it’s going um I guess the other thing we could do

really briefly is uh just hop back on Zoom do you want to do that should we do that all right I’ll come

back on okay let’s try that all right

again there was potential technical difficulties there could just be nobody’s tuning in right now either ah

because I really didn’t it didn’t look much different and now it still says uh one meditator here it’s just Wendy and I

but anyway it’s okay so even if nobody shows up we’ve got some people on Webster map listening and also uh the

recording too so we were talking about what is meditation and uh we don’t have to go over that again because we’ve

already um talked about that and I can stitch this the recording together and

um so we were talking about we’re always paying attention to something right there’s awareness all the time and

sometimes when we wake up out of what we’ve been uh what we’ve been entangled

in or lost in do you have any how to address that I’m I guess in practice or just some overall comments and wisdom

about that I think that is consciousness like there is always consciousness

and the Consciousness and awareness are not the same so for me they are really

different and focus is not the same so I guess I think for me I like the I like

the Tibetan Buddhist approach sort of idea of it so the Tibetan Buddhist word

for meditation is gone which is familiarization you may know this which

is how familiar are you with the mind and their definition is that it is about

mind training because you know I’ve thought about if you sit on the side of the there are

people I know who the the person I know who said oh I sit by the side of the river and water and

watch the you know just let my thoughts subside is to me

the problem with that is it’s not actually thinking ahead how do I want to

be in my life ahead what sort of qualities of heart what sense of wisdom

how can I learn from this what can I change what can I develop and I guess that’s a bit kind of what do they call

that uh self-helpy which is sort of a little bit where we’re at but

to me I guess the really big thing is is

it addressing the egos yearning for control

it’s big but remind me of that again I want to pick up on some of the things and said there and what yes it’s

there’s got to be a point to it right I mean there’s so many pointless things we do in our lives are seemingly pointless

it seems like there’s an intent and a goal involved right a reason a purpose for

um meditation um and I think a distinction that might be relevant to be brought in here is

um in tarabada things and I’m not going to

go too much into the vipassana but from what I understand with just the summit to training is it is just bringing the

attention back over and over again so it is a type of training right so there is a even though it’s very simple you’re

doing one single thing over and over again there’s a point to it it is to increase concentration or a samadhi to

to cultivate samadhi and it’s like unifying the Mind Gathering the Mind

collecting the mind and I guess yeah unifying and calming as well and this is

for uh at least in the Buddhist perspective it’s not just because it just feels good which it does and this

also relates to what Wendy was talking about earlier about you know reading a book why these things often feel good is

because we keep our attention focused on one thing over and over again not exactly the same thing here though but

this is in um service to building up the Mind

strength so it can be TR um so it can focus like a laser

sometimes that’s one perspective of it another way is it just um kind of unify gather collect the mind

and feel good you know a pleasant abiding so but on the laser approach when that’s when that’s built up that

faculty is built up then it can be um aimed at things for investigation like

things in papasana right um so it’s it’s often like into a tripod

and maybe I’m going too many different directions here but um the stabilization of

um sambata is like having this firm grounding and base

to able to aim that attention wherever we want that’s one approach of it

now Wendy’s comments about addressing the ego was it at the end there

yeah like the point isn’t to get to a particular state of mind that’s right so

because I just want I just want to say something that my understanding of is that it’s not about it’s not

concentration as in super tight narrowing it’s concentration as in it’s centering in

the midst so think of the eye of the storm and that’s that Gathering Fusion

kind of thing so it’s not excluding it’s just holding still in the midst of the

storm and I quite like that that and I would say that is that I personally

don’t like I got to shamita this morning meditation this morning and I was going this is kind of boring I’m full on an

Insight person I love the personal style of like investigation and inquiry

because I really I used to be really angry and I and I want to understand how

to not be angry anymore like that driver so anyway I digress

same way because it’s I find it boring as well and just have to know that this is a training and it’s a very important

point because a lot of teachers say they put this Western notion of concentration or you really got to Bear down and

tighten up and focus really tight on one thing so uh I this Con uh centration

right like you’re centering yourself it’s such a beautiful way so um yeah it’s kind of a quick and dirty

interpretation to say concentration it’s not what we usually mean here in the west but by that as well so and that’s

the thing so um a lot of times we’d like to go with our

strengths and there’s this notion that we should continue with our strengths right and and build them up uh because

you know um so we don’t get too distraught and discouraged on the on the other hand

though you know those weaknesses also need to be addressed somehow I feel

um so this is something I probably have to do more of as well is this

summer time practice in yeah because it can I mean this is the

thing that goes in can go into Jana too um which I’m gonna put set aside because

there’s so I mean it’s like a Buddhist trigger word I think we’ve mentioned this before um so many people have so many different ideas about what Janna is

and what isn’t things like this of course I’m always open to hearing people’s I just hesitant to say myself

just because it’s so no that’s not that’s not uh that’s not Jonna you know

okay and the monastics and terrible tradition from what I understand they’re not allowed to disclose their

attainments anyway right so they can’t say if they’ve had second genre third genre and we’ve I’ve talked about this

before the pros and cons of that as well yeah yeah so I think you know like there

were I heard about this these Retreats that the CEOs and you know San Francisco

like Tech gurus they go on like a week they get all wired up in the mind and

then they get into these Blissful States and so they have this idea that this is enlightenment

but Enlightenment but they have done nothing about the

sort of egoic Yearning For control for engaging for for being right for having

a very dualistic mind so the ego will divide into good and bad you know when

you’re at the second level of Jannah so Jana just to unpack that for people because I see we’ve got four meditators

here so thank you very much to our four meditators um for joining this call

um but Janna is a sort of a particular

I guess uh way of a sort of a particular spaciousness in the mind a quality of

spaciousness and there are different um they call them attainments it sounds

so like you’ve got it and Merit you know it’s all these these funny words that have this we’re so driven we think okay

you’ve got to be a good person and you’ve got to attain this as if it’s some sort of University degree or

something like that so I think it’s just it’s not whatever we think it means in

English it doesn’t so so it just it’s just like something that happens and you

know you can train the mind to have that but I often wonder how much of that can

still keep the ego in check because as eckatiel says if the ego can sneak in by

the back door and I know that from my own self and and I know that from others

so yeah I think we have four meditators more I would really love to hear what

it’s if somebody one of the four of you hello could just ask us a question that would be really lovely

um that would be very nice so please do okay so that’s why we’re waiting for

questions here it could be anything I mean it could be from the basic thing don’t you know I won’t call you out if

you don’t want or you know not call out I mean say your uh username if you if you wish not to too so we can just leave

that Anonymous unless you’d like um so I want to pick up though on the the Jonna thing as attainments and then

ego too so these are really big topics um attainments on I totally agree everything when you said at at the same

time on the other end of the spectrum the the polarity of this is well you know the positive side of attainments if

there can be one is that it keeps people that are goal driven and something to look forward to however just that in

itself can be a challenge for some people because they don’t know how to help

um I think that there can be challenges in trying to uh set goals in meditation

although I think they sometimes are needed to keep people on track right these different stages of in life and

things like that they can be Health helpful reference points or markers or things to

um I guess benchmarks in order to talk to teachers and friends about but it’s

yeah before all that have to look at am I clinging to attain this am I overly

striving to attain something am I put putting the importance on the attainment or lack of attainment so those are all

issues and potential trouble spots at you know at the same time

um if those are very helpful if those attainments are something that help the practice overall and Lead towards

addressing the ego properly and Lead towards our long-term happiness and well-being in the happiness and

well-being of others and everyone then I would say um yes just be careful how you go about

these attainments that are mentioned that you hear meditators talk about and at the same time we don’t it’s really

tricky because one of the reasons I’ll just say now that that monastics don’t talk about their attainments is because

it gets it can well can get into competitions if you have one monk that’s more attained than the others well then

they might give him more food they might pay more attention to him and neglect others so there’s it’s a whole big ball

of wax I would just say investigate this for yourself um and the human it just what it says is

The Human Condition and just just meditating for 20 years and you’re

a monastic doesn’t say anything about whether you know your dirty tricks you

know Tibet was a feudal system they the sort of the government was you know all

Buddhist but it was very futile and lots of murders and skullduggery and by the

senior community um yeah people in the community and you

know we all know that you know there have been Mis misbehaviors by senior

monastics and actually I had an interesting so here’s here’s one for you Josh just on a

slightly different note so um I um

I signed up for a retreat and it cost quite a lot of money

and the retreat got canceled because something big happened by the people and

they they said actually we we’re going to have to not only postpone this but we’re going to cancel The Retreat and

they aren’t holding another one so there’s nothing else to do and I have a bit of a deadline with regards to it I

can’t go into it but but just that and so they refunded everything but a

hundred dollars US dollars they said we’re not going to do that because it’s a unrefundable registration

fee that’s what you ticked when you signed up of course I thought well if I

opt out that means I won’t get a refund of a hundred dollars and that’s I kind of get that but they canceled it and

they’re saying no we’re not going to give that back so it’s very interesting to look at that from a Dharma

perspective so this is a Dharma organization offering a Dharma Buddhist retreat

and I’m a Dharma practitioner and I’m going

what do I how do I respond to that actually because you know like I a

hundred dollars in Australian dollars that’s a hundred and fifty dollars it’s over 100 it’s like 158 dollars for us

that’s that’s you know like um

three weeks of food for me so that’s a lot of money and

so I’ve got that but then I’m thinking well it’s the Dharma but then they haven’t given me a choice and it’s very

interesting to have to sit here and go well how much are my identifying with it

how much am I going this is my right this is unacceptable which is plenty and

it’s a complicated question so yeah I would I would I mean I’ve said

this is just really not the go you cannot do that like really I’d like my money back you you guys canceled it and

I get it I understand and but your insurance is going to cover it so we live in this commercial world where this

is what is the deal so yeah cough up and so but it’s interesting to see that so

you too have that response and I was telling my partner and he too had that response

but but sort of what is acceptable if I had given an option for it if they had

said okay we’ll take five ten dollars you know as just to cover our costs because it has cost a bit of money to

set up but it but there was something a bit hard line about it which made me feel like that’s the ego you know the

ego we talked about the ego before Rises up and when I feel like I’ve met the ego I too rise up with the ego and it

becomes this kind of kabang in the middle then what was interesting for me is historically I’ve always kind of yielded

because I thought oh well I can’t ask and they’ve decided that and I’ll just get angry and whatever but I’ll just

walk away and this time because of my Dharma practice I said

I I am not happy with that outcome and this is

this is not right so it’s interesting to look at the role

of money in this in this world and the Dharma which says you shouldn’t

be attached to money and material Goods but we need money because I’ve got to go out of the supermarket and buy things

so I’ve got to pay rent all that sort of stuff very fascinating question with something that doesn’t interest me too

much however in this case is is extremely important I feel because yeah

well at so many levels as well then we bring in the spirit of generosity right in the Dharma practice right you’re

giving from the spirit of generosity we’re talking about a deposit here right we’re not talking about uh okay we’re

asking for donations here right not at all uh we’re talking about okay well you

know who does the onus lie on you know so this the obvious to jump right to a fix

you know because I like to fix things right um so this is something I haven’t seen people written it right at their policy

uh this needs to be addressed I feel like it really would be simple plainous day to write it in there if the retreat

is canceled by any reason so and so this is how it works out right if you don’t agree to those terms of conditions not

so it seems like it happened upon a gray area where they hadn’t written that into the agreement right I think that is to

jump to the to the end here they didn’t say anything about okay if we cancel this is what happens or did they did

they say that they may have said you know it’s a couple of months ago I don’t really remember and um and you know whatever and for me

I have to do this Retreat because it’s part of some other part of process and I have to do it by a particular deadline

and they aren’t offering an alternative Retreat and all you know so it’s basically they’re

not offering an alternative Retreat so yeah so it’s very interesting to kind of sit here going actually I’m really not

happy about this yeah I’m really really not happy and so I have a I have an

expressive kind of clingy character and I have an aggressive tendency and an angry tendency so I’m sitting here kind

of I’m really pissed off you know and I’ve worked with anger for 20 years and

just to sort of see that arise but what I do notice is that even though I am very angry about that decision

there is nonetheless still something which feels calmer than it would have

been less temper tant for me than it would have been so yeah it’s it’s a it’s a it’s a

complex it’s an interesting situation but yet the sort of the basic understanding is that when you sign up

for a retreat if the retreat is canceled of course they will fully refund

that’s right and and so because you can’t just go setting up Retreats and can’t I mean if there’s no not nothing

to address that then people can set up Retreats all the time until people catch on and nobody joins them because they’re

canceling their treats and taking all them taking the deposit money so that’s this the obvious like realistic part of

this but like when he’s talking about the even deeper significance of this is when we’re tested in life and this comes

up right and then this ties into the ego too one way to look at ego is like a positive ego and a negative ego and even

further is a um by negative I mean by positive ego I mean so we can walk around in life and our name or like our

social security number in the states right and we can we know that we’re like interacting with people and that this is

called Josh or whatever people call this Josh things like that right and that uh but there’s also like an inferior

inferior ego and a superior ego and then we get into spirit spiritual egos too so

I like this delineation as well so so then we can see this when things like

this happen and how we respond and Wendy I would say um you don’t seem like there’s any kind

of trace or shred of Anger from this at all it seems like and at the same time

it’s not like you’re cold and emotionless either it seems like this is really a well-balanced process it was it

was viewed and responded to you know very healthily so we’ve got personality

types that are they need more assertiveness then we have some personality types that there I’ve

started way too much right they probably need to maybe back down a little bit or you know so that goes with this inferior

in Superior ego and which I feel this type of meditation practice helps first

see that very clearly and know this and then also kind of course correct or bring it more into balance as well and

then when we set that aside well then we’ve got or I’ve got spiritual ego now right so and that’s a whole other ball

of Wax yeah yeah actually you know that that’s one thing I’ve been I’ve been

really thinking about because because I know somebody and he is very very clear

and yet we have these conversations and I’m like that’s pure ego

so it’s this very strange conundrum where he he sees the ego in its fullness

and yet his character is kind of hooked in and here’s a question for you he says

emotions are thoughts now I kind of go actually there’s a physicality to it so

some new researchers has came out the other day I was reading it and it said that when dogs

are rejoined with their owner after a time apart they had get tears to me so

they cry when they see their their owner because they’re so delighted and

physical tears watering yeah so they have physical tears of joy when they see

their owner they are connected with them and I think okay well if a dog has got

the capacity for joy and you know and my partner once saws um I would say

cockatoos or Galas or something like that parrots and they had apparently Just Had Sex he really said wow and one

and and and and he and his cockatoo just went with delight you know he was just like

whoa this is a great old time this is my plan is very very sensitive and he

listens to the birds and he’s really good and he goes oh they’re having a Nike time today aren’t they so he’s

really good at at kind of understanding what birds are saying and animals and

how they’re saying so I think actually if animals have got emotions

and we are animals how can an emotion just be a thought is

that the labeling of the emotion or is that the emotion so I was just curious do you have a perspective on that

so that’s right I see a delineation right and not going into the whole state

where um there’s no certain you’re not giving distinctions to anything right I’m not talking about this state of

consciousness and by the way we could maybe backpedal and Define consciousness awareness and attention which I feel is

helpful but for this particular thing uh it’s a fascinating thing I obviously I

would say this is an outlier I like to hear what he says about this because I’ve never come across this before and

it just it it makes me think about when I overly identified with thinking so

much that it was that the predominant predominance and it’s almost like

I wonder if this meditator lives in the mine pretty much and what’s that’s where

they’re comfortable and that’s what they think everything is related to that and there are schools where it’s Consciousness only mind only things like

that so I’m not talking about that either really because yes and so what

it’s even more fascinating about this is how can we how can we or I guess we

Wendy a meditation teacher address this so it can be experienced for oneself right

so um I wonder I mean just as an example I’m not encouraging to hit someone but like

if he experiences pain or something okay is that a thought I mean do you have a a an emotion of hurt or pain is that a

thought what would I wonder what he would say about that just a practical example yeah you know there he he is so

he when we were talking about it I would say he has the and this is uh so

apologies to people um this is the chicken Matra School the mind-only school he really you know I am

is the only single thing that you can say for sure I exist that is true that’s

the only thing you can be sure of it is a very Cartesian perspective I would say it would just be existence because who’s

the eye but we’re not going to that now I guess yeah yeah well you know but that

that’s right but you know he says that but everything else is kind of you cannot be sure of and so that’s why he

says that oh so you’ve been to school then he is in the school I thought oh this is

like a a new meditator or something oh no oh he’s like and he’s very clear like

he’s very very Advanced so I I’m always really curious in terms of my own Dharma

practice about my own blind spots and where you can get caught you’ve just pixelated by the way something really is

real is it is it better now uh no it’s all gone blurry and pixelated we’re still here because as long as you can

still hear me there you are there you are you’re back you’re back yeah I’m always curious not so much about what is

the theory of meditation because it’s great you can read it from book you listen to a talk and yeah I’m meditating

but then when it’s like how do you apply that what is that where do we get stuck

where are our blind spots so these questions that I’m asking and then I’m kind of these topics are raising that

Gray Line Between well is it isn’t it how do you respond so I’m a full human

being how do I navigate this space it’s very experiential sorry Josh very

much so maybe we can invite him on to talk because I really haven’t studied this school much you know and I guess we

could look at um this is perception as well so he’s well we’re perceiving that there are the

perception of of feeling and emotion as well as the perception of mind and

thinking right or um but then he’s only perceiving everything as mine or our thoughts right

in a way right so that’s in a way maybe this is more of a talk about perception

than it is those those things as well so the perceptual level gets very can get

very very subtle um as well so yeah I haven’t studied I haven’t studied this much it would be

fascinating to have maybe a dialogue about this or talk about this maybe actually this is exactly what he says he

says it’s all perception so this is exactly you’ve hit the nail on the head so thank you very much Josh you kind of

answered my question because I feel like he’s very egoic in the middle of it and yet he has this phenomenal capacity for

awareness so I think it’s a such a conundrum to in his presence and I fully

like when I’m I’m in his presence and I I just go into this full awakened State

you know it’s really lovely and I’m like oh this is all ego this is really interesting I’m I’m kind of really

receptive to his his way of being but I feel like he’s not relating he also

doesn’t relate to people so he’s not listening to people in a really hard way

so you know into the emotional landscape yeah you go maybe he might ask you well

um why do you think it’s ego you know it it just I wonder if he he has never said

that but that’s true so how would he um how would this school um address the heart you know heart qualities as well

so that it seems like because this seems I’m more on wisdom level where it’s if it’s not balanced with heart quality it

gets really cold and like disconnected from reality and this is where the true

truth teaching I feel can be very helpful too there’s the conventional uh truth in that there’s an ultimate truth

right yeah no that work that explains so I mean um

it explains so much uh and can be applied so many different places to to

gain clarity now um how that’s how that teaching is laid out there’s there’s there’s levels of helpfulness about how

it’s done too but yeah so I just want to just um say for our 12 meditators who are

listening here that wisdom in this term is not about how much knowledge do you

have or anything like that wisdom is a technical term and it means the capacity

to see the interrelatedness of everything and that everything nothing has an inherent quality in and of itself

it is empty of any particular quality and that to have equality it arises

dependent on other things so everything is contextual and that is what how we

gain meaning and so when you see that you become wise to the kind of foolish

errands that we are all on thinking things make us happy and that thing can

be a person or it can be a relationship or a car not not necessarily materialistic in terms of a car house

whatever but there was a time about 10 years ago I was in a different relationship and

um I we came out of the supermarket and I said it was my birthday I think and I

said wow I’ve got a good relationship I’ve got a job I like I have friends I

like I’m getting on well with family I have good health physical and mental but

I’m still unhappy and um and so what I realized is that I had

been quite materialistic at some level about those things that they would give

me happiness now none of them are technically materialistic but I realized

that I had actually been expecting those things to give me happiness so that

shift of like that’s outside me and it’s going to make me happy I think is the

materialist perspective in some kind of way is it is that what you feel absolutely and I hear this more and more

I’ve had at least one guest in my podcast that come to this realization she had everything that Society told her

that she should have to be happy and they were kind of external things and so she dropped all those and yeah it just

uh it really is the case as far as I’m concerned this then I wonder if this even touches on spiritual materialism as

well I’m forgetting how some people uh Define that but that’s what came to mind when you were talking too yeah yeah I

think my understanding and spiritual materialism that’s a term um that charging trumpet uh came up with

and so he’s in the Tibetan tradition just to let people know and

hey that was something that so we talked before about the genres

a very very controversial figure he was he was he was out of the Samuel Ling in

Scotland um and that’s why he ended up in America but he actually went via from Tibet to

India he fled part of the occupation the invasion of Tibet he ended up in India and because of Frieda um Betty

um she had connections with Oxford because she’d been to Oxford and so she got him and a cup and another one called

up into Oxford and then they actually started a Tibetan Buddhist Monastery

called samueling in Scotland but changing trinka was such a drinker and

womanizer they just said we cannot have you here so and so he was like select

bang at the time of the sexual revolution in the 60s and he was having a whale of a time and so the yeah it was

all kind of I’ve heard even like a worse accusations or not I don’t even know if they’re accusations if they’ve been

proven or not I won’t go into that now but yeah I mean if that wasn’t enough what Wendy just said I’ve heard things

that are go beyond that even and far into the unskillful side but anyway go

ahead and well you mean we can argue I mean we could talk about uh different stages of the path too about but anyway

you to pick back up where you’re at there yes yes sorry so I you know what

that says is you know there are many charlatans and many Scoundrels in the

spiritual world don’t be foolhardy and just leap in not witnessing not keeping

your wits about you because some people are very charming and and they have a

certain level of accomplishment and attainment and Clarity but that doesn’t mean to say they don’t have Jinx in

their behavior yes yeah yeah yeah yeah so you know you

and me we’re we’re you know I am deeply flawed yes well yeah well I mean you’re

a little bit of tongue-in-cheek there but no I mean so yeah we haven’t reached full Awakening yet if it’s not obvious

so until we do right I am deeply flawed I am deeply flawed I am so far from

being perfect let me tell you you know so yeah but to go back to spiritual

materialism what you know think about to me it reminds me of that that question

that we had about the janas these States of uh presence of the mind which is what a genre is or a Diana it’s also called

just according to the language and um and that’s really saying I’ve reached

the first one so therefore I’ve got this kind of I’m this kind of quality of good

that is spiritual materialism I’ve had this kind of uh you know you meditate

and you have a particular sort of some something arises experience or Escape yes yeah exactly and then you say well

I’m a better person than you because I’ve had that and it’s very subtle you know it’s super subtle totally caught

that I’m so I still get caught there it’s so irritating

well yeah you know it’s like yeah so it’s just like that where did this

capacity and habit for comparing ourselves and you know because the

Buddha said that uh you know thinking I’m greater than someone is conceit well that’s obvious right thinking I’m less

than someone that’s conceit too and this is the people with like the inferior ego I’m not good enough I’m not as good as

them but the most subtle is thinking I’m just as good as someone right that says

oh I’m just as good as that person you would think well maybe there’s some equality there well I uh it’s subtle but

I could I could say this time and time again I could never imagine Wendy’s unique Brilliance nor she could she

match mine and that it’s where all the greater for that because if we were all on the same level it would just like

this gray blob hive mind of how boring and homogenized that would be as well right

so it was very interesting as you said you know Wendy’s amazing unique yes and I was going well I’m not really amazing

but I’m definitely more amazing than you Josh it was just like quickest so you had both you had inferior ego and

Superior ego right and equal rights

wow it was quick as a flash it just arose and I’m only saying this because

you know it’s just like this is just the nature of we are kind of yeah I’m deeply flawed I’m I’m not there I

guess the only thing I would say is you know I call it out and I’m like yeah I’m a doofus you know I might my favorite my

favorite line is you know about the Great Master it’s his birthday today and he said last year old fool this year no

change and I definitely feel that that’s I it’s more that I become more aware of how

foolish I am I suppose that’s what I would say well and then I would say that well I also I obviously did the same

thing and it’s like when I look at Wendy oh I’ve you know I’m here and she’s there or she’s here and I’m there and oh

but we’re here you know so but the foolish thing is I I love the way they

put it I mean it brings it right down to earth and at the same time just seeing that you’re just because you can see

that you’re no fool right well I’m still you know like you know but it’s it’s just it’s like the ego and

and why do we have this thing you know I I have everybody has an ego everybody

has it so there has to be a developmental component to it so that I really was like Wow everyone’s there and

I’ve been really thinking a lot about this and going actually what what I was on Retreat one time and I know we’ve

only got one minute and 56 seconds left yes um but I was on Retreat one time and

what I realized is that uh it’s the ego is a response to seek social Connection

in order to remain part of the group to have that sense of belonging and when we

have the emotional mirroring to support our sense of failure of not working out

you know we sort of feel ashamed or guilty or or just shame humiliate or

whatever it is disappointed then the ego comes in and says no you still belong

anyway but you need to if you have somebody to unpack the emotional part of

it going it’s very hard actually when we care about something and it doesn’t

quite come together so but if but you can get it later

um so just because I used to have quite a strong narcissistic experience where I

and I would say my my thing is um my reference points were external to

me and that to me is a marker of where the ego is at now I’m conscious we are less than one minute so what do you want

to do Josh oh yeah another thing that came to mind with that as well is that it could be also trying to control

things in order to belong right trying to uh yeah to have control over things

or that illusion so yeah I guess we’ll wrap it up here um we still haven’t set a a date but

it’ll neither be towards the end of this month again or the beginning of next month but we’re trying to get on

um last Thursday of the month whenever that might work out but thank you all for joining and thank you Wendy and uh

see you again next time guys and thank you to Alaska 16 meditators who came so thank you very much for all being part

of this it’s 35 on wisdom out bye now

Published by josh dippold


5 thoughts on “What Is Meditation? | 11/2/2022 “Meditation Q & A With Wendy Nash” #02

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