I interviewed Ram Das Batchelder for Awakening Together’s August 2015 Satsang. In this interview, Ram Das shares enthusiastically about his early spiritual path and the ego-delusions that accompanied his first experiences of God. He also shares how he found his Satguru, Amma, “the hugging saint.” In the final 30 minutes of the interview, Ram Das discusses his realization of truth through Self-inquiry including how through truth, he sees that everything he believed in before, including his own spiritual path, does not exist … Supreme Truth alone exists.
Ram Das was born in Pennsylvania in 1961, had a spiritual awakening in his early twenties, and has spent most of the last 25 years in India as a devotee of Amma, the “hugging Saint.” He has written four children’s books, which have been translated into several European languages, and also a novel in rhyming verse, three full-length plays, and 40 original songs. In 2012, he and his wife, Tarini Ma, wrote and co-taught a university course on Hinduism in Venezuela. He has given numerous talks and workshops about various aspects of spirituality in many locations around the world. He and his wife are currently offering 5-star tours of the sacred cities of India, to both Spanish and English-speaking groups.
“Rising in Love: My Wild and Crazy Ride to Here and Now, with Amma, the Hugging Saint” tells the story of Ram Das Batchelder’s powerful marijuana-fuelled spiritual awakening in America (which included meeting an angel), his two-year struggle with delusion and addiction, his subsequent renunciation of drugs, and his eventual discovery of Amma (the living Guru known in the West as “the Hugging Saint”). The narrative then covers the 27 amazing years he has spent in quest of Enlightenment as Amma’s devotee, most of that time in India. It is a story of profound healing from drug addiction and despair into a joyfully fulfilled life, and is therefore a ray of hope for all who suffer from addiction or mental illness of one kind or another.
(Rising in Love’s publication was directly approved by Amma, and contains 22 photos of her. All royalties from the sale of Rising in Love are being donated to Amma’s orphanage in Kerala, India, which houses 500 children and consistently turns out some of the most successful high school graduates in the state, one-third of whom go on to earn college degrees.)
Tony Samara, author of The Simplicity of Love Meditation returned this month for another Satsang interview with Regina.
This month’s interview covered the following topics:
- Embracing the creative moment of this now
- Transcending the inner saboteur
- Learning to let the Heart make choices for us
- The connection between the brain and choices
- Realizing who I am
- The Keys to Meditation
Tony Samara was born in England. He grew up in Egypt, England, and Norway. He had an unusual curiosity as a boy, which led to a very serious spiritual interest by the time he was a teenager. Even though Tony was a good student, he decided to apply himself to meditation instead of going to university. At the age of 27 he experienced a dramatic moment of enlightenment. Now people from all over the world visit Tony to take spiritual guidance and experience being in his presence.
In this audio, Tony introduces us to Ahimsa as a spiritual path. Ahimsa is from the Jain tradition and points to thinking and acting from inner peace and love so that no harm comes to anyone or anything. You may listen to this audio Satsang at the link below.
Tony is the author of a number of books including ‘Shaman’s Wisdom,’ ‘The Simplicity of Love Meditation,’ ‘Different Yet the Same,’ ‘Karma, Mantra and Beyond’ and ‘Discover Your Inner Buddha’. His website is tonysamara.com.
Gina Lake was a wonderful guest for our monthly online Satsang. She was authentic, clear and generous with her sharing.
In 1999, Gina Lake awakened to her true nature. After awakening, she discovered her purpose, which is writing and teaching in order to help people be in the present moment and live happy and fulfilled lives. Gina teaches that both are possible by shedding light on the ego and other programming or conditioning that interferes with that.
Gina has written many books including From Stress to Stillness, Trusting Life, Radical Happiness, Embracing the Now, Choosing Love, Ten Teachings for One World, Getting Free, Living in the Now, Return to Essence, Anatomy of Desire, A Heroic Life, and The Jesus Trilogy (Choice and Will, Love and Surrender, and Beliefs, Emotions, and the Creation of Reality).
Listen to the delightful conversation with Adyashanti’s wife, Mukti. Mukti has been a student of her husband, Adyashanti, since he began teaching in 1996. Together they founded Open Gate Sangha. Previously, Mukti studied the teachings of Paramahansa Yogananda for over 20 years.
In her teachings, Mukti points audiences back to their natural state of wholeness or undivided consciousness. In this audio, we get to experience those teachings directly and discover for ourselves how simple, clear and profound her teachings are.
On Sunday, February 15, 2015, I interviewed Nirmala for Awakening Together’s monthly online Satsang. Nirmala offers free e-books, audios, videos and articles on his website, Endless-Satsang. His friend and mentor, Adyashanti, describes Nirmala this way:
“What is appealing about Nirmala is his humility and lack of pretense, which welcomes whatever arises within the field of experience. In the midst of this welcoming is always an invitation to inquire deeply within, to the core of who and what you are. Again and again, Nirmala points the questions back to the questioner and beyond to the very source of existence itself-to the faceless awareness that holds both the question and the questioner in a timeless embrace.”
Enjoy the following Satsang audio recorded live in the Awakening Together Sanctuary.
Our second online Satsang this year with dear, sweet, generous Timothy. Tonight we discussed several common topics of confusion including:
~ Effort on the spiritual path versus ‘no effort’ or ‘just stop’ in order to awaken
~ Relationship between awakening and improvements in health and the world condition
~ Allowing all things to be as they are versus taking action, including a discussion on raising children
A founding member of Awakening-Together, Nyki serves on our Member Board of Trustees. She shares her life story, its many challenges and how they were a part of her own spiritual awakening. This is a powerful audio. It is inspirational for all who have had challenging life experiences, since Nyki’s demonstration encourages us to question the old order of our ego and ‘exit the script’ (so to speak) into true spiritual Awakening beyond the personal self.
Jacquelyn Eckert hosted the event in the Awakening Together Sanctuary.
In August 2003, Jan Frazier experienced a radical transformation of consciousness. You could say that instant clarity arose, because she was suddenly looking at life from another point of reference. Instead of looking from the perspective of the psyche known as the personal self, Jan’s identity shifted to the spaciousness that is universal awareness. With this shift, a whole new way of seeing and relating arose.
We spoke with Jan in the Awakening Together Sanctuary. Several members asked questions, and Jan shared clear and simple answers.