Tibet House US Menla Conversations: Duncan Trussell – Ep. 254
Joined by Duncan Trussell, comedian and creative genius behind “The Midnight Gospel” animated series, Robert A.F. Thurman leads a deep dive into popular culture, science fiction, spirituality, and the wisdom of the Nalanda tradition as preserved and transmitted down through the ages by Tibet’s people, culture and inner sciences.
Opening with reflections on the Covid-19 pandemic, Professor Thurman and Duncan in this extended conversation, share stories, teachings and insights from their time on and off the stage and from their encounters with exceptional beings such as His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, Ram Das, their wives and families.
Episode includes: A discussion of the role of mentors and aspirational figures on the spiritual path, a short overview of the history of Tibet, Buddhism and mindfulness practice in the West, an introduction to non-duality, Buddhist inner mind sciences and a frank conversation on the historical use of mind and body altering substances found across world traditions.
Podcast includes a short “Consolation Prize” guided meditation led by Robert Thurman.
The Bob Thurman podcast is produced under a Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives License through the generous support of its listening audience and the Tibet House US Menla membership community. To learn about the benefits of membership please visit: www.tibethouse.us.
The songs “Trance Tibet” & ‘Dancing Ling’ by Tenzin Choegyal from the album ‘Heart Sutra‘ (2004) by Ethno Super Lounge are used on the Bob Thurman Podcast with artist’s permission, all rights reserved.
Duncan Trussell: 0:01:15 Hey, it's great to see you.
Bob Thurman: 0:01:16 It's great to see you. How are you down in North Carolina? Okay.
Duncan Trussell: 0:01:20 Yeah, I'm in Asheville right now
Bob Thurman: 0:01:23 In Asheville. Up in the mountains. Yes, sir. Up in the mountains. Beautiful. That's really nice up there.
Duncan Trussell: 0:01:29 It's beautiful. Where are you located right now?
Bob Thurman: 0:01:32 I'm in Woodstock. Okay. In our bed actually, literally Bearsville which is just outside Woodstock. I haven't left here except for one day in over a year because I'm retired.
So I'm really happy being home a lot. Yeah. You're going to get you a lot of work here with Tibetans and everything, and also keeping Menla and Tibet house alive, you know, to bed house.
We have a healing center country place here. Tibet house does and I'm the custodian. An unpaid custodian, but I love it. It's his holiness’s, his place, his holiness slept there. You know, you have a bed that is holiness’s , slept in Washington!
Duncan Trussell: 0:02:16 That's how do you work it out in your mind that your karma is such that you get to know his holiness?
Bob Thurman: 0:02:28 Well, I will be doing many lives and uh, I think I've, I've, you know, some lives I wasn't being as helpful as I should have. So I had some problems this life too, but I'm trying to be very helpful and I think I have been.
Duncan Trussell: 0:02:45 Yeah. Yeah, you're friends with his Holiness.
Bob Thurman: 0:02:51 He's an amazing guy too. He's a great guy, but he's also totally normal. In other words, you just, I feel you don't have to like Bow down and blow horn and all this crap kind of want to yeah. Sometimes do it, but here he hits up.
Actually, there's one funny story. I can tell you, please, if you're interested in that where I should be giving you a funny story, but anyway, I will tell you one. And that is, I was in 1980. I had been there for a year with my family. You know, all of them, four kids, one was only two. And, uh, my cook, I was leaving. I'd been there since 1979 and I had to leave, go back to work. I had a sabbatical, you know, and then I brought the family to have an exit interview, like an audience that you're saying goodbye. And thank you, bye bye. Working together as fine. So I wanted it to be very formal, to give a good example to my kids about the, be respectful to the Lama, right?
Bob Thurman: 0:03:53 So I'm going here and the kids are coming with me dinner and it's always just standing there reading. And then I, I try to do a bow, you know, a formal bow and I'm going down with the bow, right? So instead of letting me do the bow, he w he steps forward. He grabs my hand, shake it, like, just like ordinary thing. But because I'm already going down, I fall over.
Everybody's laughing and the kids are just having a ball and all the tension was broken! Through the ice and they're laughing away. And then of course, it's saying, I told you not to be so formal. It's all it doesn't want it, but she's giving me instructions. Wow. And I'm trying to get up off the floor and then were all laughing. And then I'm introducing the kids. They're having fun. But then I will introduce you the kids, the two year old, he thought that was the big thing to do.
So we suddenly hear this stumping noise and he is doing the Australian crawl across the floor of the room. Wow. That's what I was doing. Well, that is amazing. That is so cracking up totally about all these antics of these kids. And that's typical of him, you know, cuttings, you formality, you know, just being, being cool.
Duncan Trussell: 0:05:18 I, it's great to hear these stories because I think most people who feel any kind of draw towards that philosophy, don't know, can't even imagine what it would be like to, uh, be around a being like that. And, and it's nice. And I think that anytime I saw him speak in Anaheim, and that was the sort of joyful realization is how funny he is and how bubbly he is and how there isn't like a heavy heaviness to it.
Bob Thurman: 0:05:53 No, no, no. He doesn't do it. <inaudible> like, they're like packaged, like it's some kind of like alien statue or something. Right. He doesn't, he can't be like that in a ritual, be very grandiose and very, you know, I couldn't attend his movements and so forth and kind of like, Hmm. But, uh, when he's hanging out, he's just hanging out, you know, he's very resilient.
You know what that is? Is that the message of that is about the teaching. When you go through yourselves and you discover the void, you know, freedom like openness, no, nothing but openness, you know, and you're doing find a rigid thing. That's your sort of fixed identity, you know, it's up to nine data, you know? Yeah. Then you become resilient as far as doing appropriate in different situations and you fit the people, whatever benefits them, you know, you're very oriented towards make, cheering them up, you know, making them happy at the squat. It's very neat. It's very neat because people think, well, when you realize selflessness or emptiness, then me and you just sort of everything, it doesn't exist. And you're just sort of do anything, but it's not a rule like that. It's that you become very focused on the minute details of things to make it nice. You know,
Duncan Trussell: 0:07:09 What's the, what's the Tibetan word for emptiness?
Bob Thurman: 0:07:13 It's actually a kind of a T who had no air comes out. It's what's called an aspirated key task. Yeah. That's perfect. Yeah.
Duncan Trussell: 0:07:36 And is, does this translate directly to emptiness or is there another, Bob Thurman: 0:07:41 I prefer voidness in some contexts because in some tantric thing, there's something called high meditation and there's something called the four don't bias. The four empties, whenever I translate for empties, I think a beer cats. That's just terrible. So I like to say the boy. Yeah. Yeah.
Duncan Trussell: 0:08:06 I gotta tell you, I I'm listening right now do an audio book, which is a translation of the Way of the Bodhisattva by Shanti Deva by his holiness, his whole, in his translated it.
And, uh, I kind of feel like in the last chapter, the rug just gets pulled out from under you. And it seems almost unfair in the sense that the beginning chapter seem to be a lot about how lucky you are to be human. And then in the very last chapter, it does this systematic dismemberment of your identity. And then it's just like, have a great night, have a good night. That's the end. And it's okay. See you later.
Bob Thurman: 0:08:50 That's the thing. You said, freedom. What that is, is that the introduction to freedom? Because as long as you're still stuck, that this is the role, that's a real wall over there. Oh yeah. Just a floor. It's a real body. Just, you know, it was normal. You know, I owned Mongolian was very teacher was very great. He used to say, people think they're real and they're not wrong. They aren't real. The problem is they think they're really so in order to switch from being stuck to being just free, but real, you know, free real. Yeah. Then you have to one time, see all of it dissolve, you know, and let them go down stream, you know, and let go, go with the flow, you know, then that, and then you are picked up by the flow and then you're open to the surf reality, you know, cause reality goes in waves, you know, and that's really, that's really fun, but it is, it is, it does seem unfair almost because everything gets the table just comes apart. Bob Thurman: 0:10:00 Yes. You know, it's a thought experiment and that kind of third experiment when conducted by strong concentration really leads you into an experience of pure space. And then the key then the trick is, and this is very tricky at that point, that feels like a huge release. But the danger there is that then someone will think, Oh, that's the freedom. And it'll never be back a day or with all those things. And then they get stuck there and they think that, you know, that's Nirvana somewhere else. And there is a in fact that's so natural to make that mistake that Buddha practically, let people think that some of them, but then introduced them when they first had, after they had that experience. Well, actually that, because that's another relational state, it's an altered state, but it's a relational state. Cause you went there from here and then here comes back at some point.
Bob Thurman: 0:10:58 Right. And, and therefore the key is you have to marriage being here as be free and empty space and yet very much here. Um, but that's, that's the deeper thing. That's where love comes in and compassion, wisdom becomes loving compassion areas here because
then when you're here, you're feeling so great because you were empty space, but you're hearing the illusion and playing with it, having fun. And then you need somebody and they're really not having fun. They're really upset because they lost an election or they lost their shoes or they dropped their tooth price. And then, and then you, Oh, let me help you with that, you know?
Duncan Trussell: 0:11:44 Okay. Can you address? I have so many questions for you.
Bob Thurman: 0:11:48 Well, that's great. I have enough for you though. I want, let me just say, you know, I want to ask you a lot about, because you were so close actually, although I knew him also from 1959, but you were so close in the last years to Ron does, and now he's gone and I haven't really asked you a lot about that and your feeling and then the people, people. So, I mean, we'll come around to it, but we can trade, but I really want to know let's treat questions.
Duncan Trussell: 0:12:17 I have two specific questions for you and, and uh, one of them is, can you talk about the, as we study, I am studying, uh, specifically to bet and Buddhism, and I've been on a tear reading book after book on grit. And, but I I'm want to, I find myself in my meditation practice, having sometimes wonderful experiences, the wonderful experience happens, but because I've been reading this, these books, I think forget about that. You're not even supposed to, you know, don't, don't, don't even bother with that, but I I've noticed that kind of almost a kind of neurotic attitude appearing towards each, anything that starts emerging, that seems re remotely akin to some of the things that I've been reading in these books. I either will think, well, this is a placebo you're projecting what you've read onto this experience because you so want to have illumination or you're experiencing some something, but because you're focusing on it now you're going to get addicted to this something. And then what ends up happening is is it kind of neurotic echo chamber related to this phenomenon? I wonder if you could talk about this and this
Bob Thurman: 0:13:36 That's so good. That's such a thought when you see people too much, teach that as long as you meditate, that that's all you have to do is meditate. You're going to have to learn anything in the numbers. It's a little bit the attitude of the, of the westerner who thinks that we were so great and smart and civilized, and we're the future and blah, blah, blah. A lot of downturns when actually we're still highly militarized sitting on top of a genocide of the native Americans, right? Men of the blacks and do a Jim Crow old, Jim grew up. In other words, we're not quite so far out as we take, right? So actually maybe we have something to learn from people who in the past, the Brits conquered them a little bit. You know what I mean? They were peaceful. So therefore they were nicer or they weren't weak or actually they were just less Fila. Bob Thurman: 0:14:29 And so you have to learn. So learning is very key and learning does not disturb your meditation. In fact, it helps you aim it in a proper way. And actually you can make an argument that the thing about projecting entertains and so on. Well, we're projecting everything all the time. You know, one of the insights of emptiness is, you know, when you in a dream, when you have a dream, even if you're not lucidly dreaming, where you just ordinarily dreaming, which you remember only when you wake up, right? Cause you were kind of just us, but in a dream you have a mood change and you can change the whole environment. You know, you were in the Eiffel tower and you were about to go up and have a escargo or something or a beautiful, a beautiful waffle up there for breakfast. Yes. I pray.
Bob Thurman: 0:15:20 I pray for a restaurant and your dream, and then you feel a little fear or something, and then suddenly we're falling off the Eiffel tower. So now you were suddenly in the air outside and your dream, actually, we are creating our environment in normal waking time too, because everything we see, we project a concept on it. You recognize it. I just would say, we, we recognize it. That would say we see it. I, again, yes, fit. It was some presupposition. We have that's the painting on my wall. That's the wall. This is the floor. I'm Bob, et cetera. And, and so when we go in, even when we're meditating it, if someone has told us that the thing to do is don't take anything, just ignore all your thoughts, just go, go, drop them, drop out. And don't think which is useful to a point.
Bob Thurman: 0:16:08 But if they're saying that gives you the final goal, there that's a mistake, but the word is useful because then you get more to choose what you want to think. You're not just proven by throwing, but if you're doing that, and then you come to a moment of silence where new thoughts are popping up in your mind. Yes. That gives you a little bit of a buzz. And the danger there that has happened to many, a meditator is that was enlightened meant at first. And at first they have a big buzz and then they get so bored after a while. And then when they're not doing that and someone steps on their toes, they get really pissed off because they didn't actually really unravel their identity habit. You know, me, I need my, and mine. I needed the great thing to Pete on St. No, I made me mine.
Bob Thurman: 0:16:54 I mean that all day little thing, you know? And so they checked, you damn was so good with, so even when you are not thinking you're projecting a state of not thinking into being quiet to follow me. Yes. So therefore the reason, the reason what's called the most high thing that you're reading in the Shante Deva and the dilemmas, things always the most high thing is called the Royal reason of relativity. And what that is, what that means is that all things are empty of any non-relative component. And that includes me and any object that I look at. So what that means is we, even when I see something as if it had a non-relative component, it was really real exactly that way. And I'm really real exactly this way, that the mere fact, I can see it as if it is not in T proves that it's him
Bob Thurman: 0:18:00 T because I'm seeing right. I need a big game mistake about it, and then
Bob Thurman: 0:18:06 I'm relating to it and to the source of my mistake, which is my projection, my ignorance. Okay. And it's not just an unpredicted. The other thing I'm predicting it other as a really real thing. Right. So I'm stuck on it and I'm stuck with myself. So, so for example, when I have an emotion, obsession, you know, lust, let's say greed or anger, hatred, when I'm stuck there, it seems to come from a really real place. So it seems to be really real. So I lose it. I forget what would be effective. I forget what is appropriate. I don't get the bigger picture I'm driven by my rage or my obsession obsession to do something really is usually self-destructed yes, temporarily it might be destructive of something else, but in the long run self disturbed, like somebody who was meshed as a valuable plate or something. Okay. And then they went, Oh, shit, cost me $200. They're like, why did I do that? Do you know what I mean? Yes. And that's because that, that anger is perceived as coming from a really real fixed self. It has a right to be angry. And the anger seems overwhelming that I have to follow whatever it wants me to do. And it pretends to me that it makes me stronger. And actually it turns me into an ass.
Bob Thurman: 0:19:23 Yes, yes. And I can say that
Duncan Trussel: 0:19:27 Lawler experience has seen asshole of times I'm a professional asshole.
Bob Thurman: 0:19:34 So, so what I'm coming back to the question, what that means is that you have to don't think it's neurotic. You have to do the learning. The first type of wisdom is called the wisdom form of learning. That's why I wasn't raised Darko Juna and Shante, Devar, and Dalai Lama, et cetera. I did. The second one is the wisdom board of critical doubting and thinking over a net, knowing on it and struggling with it and, and developing a deeper learning what fits with oneself. And, and then the third one is where it had, you could just focus on that because you're aimed, you know, your, your, your site citing mechanism, your telescopic site is the focus coming from what you learned. And therefore you were aiming at freedom, knowing that the freedom is right here in the relativity, because all of the interrelated things are illusory, right.
Bob Thurman: 0:20:32 They're not just totally down existed, but they're illusory. So, so you were free and relating to them, you could relate to them in a light way. You know, like, as you said, that's used to say so brilliantly, you know, you're sort of knew that one is there, you're in, he was identifying it often because his body was so painful at the end with sort of a disembodied condition. But he also had ecstatic, a lot of ecstatic experience in his life. That man had been super high, super high in the past he had. And so, and so he knew it was there. Yes. So he would say, well, this is just a movie, you know, that was his tape, like say illusory, but that didn't mean he didn't care about the movie. I remember one time when I gave a talk era, I was pretty jacked up.
Bob Thurman: 0:21:21 I was cause I was enjoying the talk because I talked myself into a state where it seems to miss myself temporarily that I know what I'm talking about, which I don't actually really, but it seems to me, so then I got in a good mood cause I told her something to it. But, but, and then other people like it because we're all getting in a good mood. So I went up to see him in his chair there. And, and there were a lot of people looking to see him cause he was there. I was still, you know, pay in as much pain as he was. Yes. I was looking at him because we had this old relationship and I just cherish every moment I managed to meet him toward the end there and, and, and, and hanging out with him. And then, but when he said was so cute, he looks up at me, smiling, you know? And then he says, look at them.
Bob Thurman: 0:22:12 He bought it. He wanted me to look at the other people. Wow. And hula happily there rather than just him, you know, in other words, okay. We got it. We're okay. We liked it. We're fine. But look at them. And he was just completely there for them, you know? Yeah. He was there for me too, but he was just clued to me, was look at them. Yeah. You know, so they're young and they're just like, they have so much life in them and they're going to find so many things and they're already here, you know? I mean, he was, it was just so neat.
Duncan Trussell: 0:22:45 That's beautiful. That's and that kind of condensed sort of fractal teaching that he was doing towards the end there because he didn't, he didn't have the ability to speak as he used to. So everything was condensed. I unraveled so many interactions that I had with him because everything he said was folded up. And I mean, just that look at them. You can, I mean, you could do a book just based on what that has.
Bob Thurman: 0:23:11 Absolutely. I know he was, he was amazing. I loved him. I knew him when he was two Richard, Dr. Albert try to be around in a green Mercedes convertible. How did you pass out? What how'd you meet him? I was an undergraduate at Harvard when he was a professor there. Wow. And before they really took off, you know, after they all got fired or they broke with Harvard and went to Millbrook, then I do that there too. But I knew them from when they were actually, but they would take it really small doses, other people. And I was there with some young guys and girls and we were thinking bigger ones. They were blamed later turning out, but they didn't give us anything. They were doing experiments with, you know, carefully monitored. They were being very proper. Where were you getting your acid from? All the Mescalin and stuff. You know, we, you know, it was around late fifties, early sixties and disrupt trends, you know, you know, I didn't, I don't know where they got it, you know?
Duncan Trussell: 0:24:17 Well, they were getting it from the Sandoz laboratories, right?
Bob Thurman: 0:24:21 Yeah. The Harvard people, the doctors got from Sandos. So there was some floating around there. Wasn't an Eagle at that time. It was not illegal. I know in some early trips I would go and work around Harvard square and I would, I would hug her cop.
Duncan Trussell: 0:24:36 And what reaction would you get from the cop in those days? Or were they just
Bob Thurman: 0:24:43 Like this or the cleaning lady in the Hayes? Bickford. Yeah. At four in the morning she would look like the Virgin married or like, or would be the better. And then, but they were used to eccentric students. So they were kind of all right about it. You know, as long as you're wearing sort of men will say it anyway, there were no hippies and there were no wild state so much in that area, you know? So they were all right.
Duncan Trussell: 0:25:09 You, you have a psychedelic, uh, conference coming up with a lot of great speakers. Um, what are your thoughts regarding the current? What people are calling the second or the third psychedelic wave, the end of the prohibition, all the studies that are happening, you know, the other day, just on a whim, I bought a thousand dollars worth of LSD stocks on the stock market. And it was the funniest moment. Cause I'm thinking I am now living in a world where even in the old days, when I was buying stock and LSD and men, I was buying LSD.
Bob Thurman: 0:25:44 You mean from Sandoz, you bought Sandra,
Duncan Trussell: 0:25:47 Oh, there's various corporations that are being publicly traded right now that have no FDA approved, you know, studies where they're synthesizing LSD. So you can literally invest on the stock market, into the manufacturer of LSD. What, as someone who was there before the, uh, crack down during the crackdown and now after the crack down, what are your thoughts regarding what we can expect culturally, as psychedelics continue to, um, have the sort of taboo removed from them and or HSA?
Bob Thurman: 0:26:23 Well, the thing is the great book by Michael Paula, that I know, you know, you know how to change your mind, you know, that great writer or just to do diet and health. And then he got into it. And then he experiments himself very timidly, but where wonderfully, I thought it was a wonderful book. Well, he shows that when it started, it was a great thing and the psychiatrists were doing fantastic work. There was some nasty stuff by the CIA going on in Canada and here and there crazy stuff, because they were hoping they could make super soldiers with it. And everything was fine.
Duncan Trussell: 0:27:01 May I wait, may I stop you there? I, you I'm sure you're aware of this. Ted Kaczynski was the Unabomber I believe was at Harvard around the time that you were there to know him and they were doing the OSS was paying. And I can't remember the head of the facility there, but was PA they were doing, they were doing the very research you're talking about on Ted Kaczynski at Harvard while you were there. Oh yeah.
Bob Thurman: 0:27:28 I didn't know that. I didn't know. There were anyone around there. I thought it all happened in Canada, but okay. Then that's, that's another piece of the puzzle. I had no idea of that, but the point is that's the point is that the psychedelics in general, just to say are a wonderful tool that are used in many cultures with thousands and thousands of years. And they are part of a kind of initiation thing of finding your place in the universe for someone who is not going to be a monk, or they're not going to be a, an ascetic Christian bunk in the desert or whatever, they're going to be a normal person, have a family and do things, but they're going to have a virtual way of pulling themselves together within the terms of Christianity or Judaism or whatever it may be, or an indigenous religion.
Bob Thurman: 0:28:12 And so plant conversation with plants and plant essences and mushrooms, which is a whole other genus of a biological entity. I saw a stab at the other day, that guy so fraud anyway, you know, he is a mushroom. I think he bones and he, I counted McKenna was a little bit like that. And so it was a wonderful discovery of this sort of machine oriented culture of ours, very militarized and racist and dominator oriented and alienated from nature and polluting and destroying it and exploiting it and saw it. And it was a great discovery that the nature talk to us do it. And it was channeling in through academics and psychiatrists that treated the military. People are doing their nasty thing and they discovered it was useless to them because actually it had the opposite effect. It made people a lot. It made them more love with nature. It made them more open and some badly directed it might've made them crazy. But the point is it deconstructed their rigid cultural, where the supremacy people, we should own everything and dominate everybody. And so it was not useful. It was the contrary to useful. Now the other answer to the question is interesting, which is there was a guy called Harry Anslinger in the thirties and forties and fifties, maybe more forties and fifties. He was a hoovered friend. And I just saw this premier of a, about Billy holiday
Bob Thurman: 0:29:43 Is a great singer, you know, and how she was persecuted. And they were really angry with her because she sang a song called strange fruit lynching. Yes. And she was really popular with great say you're a nightclubs, but did you down and then would throw in a little black power subversive thing. And they hated her and they weren't to arrest her. And then he said in one scene to the Hoover and the other guys, all the white guys, and they're like, we know OSS type room and this early sixties, late fifties. And he said early fifty-seven. And he said, well, we can't arrest them for singing our song, but we could get them for using heroin, the drug laws, you know, right. And do this, you know, and he was notorious, he was the one who put acid on the schedule, one list with dangerous anesthetic drugs and things like that.
Duncan Trussel: 0:30:37 I thought it was Nixon. Right. I thought it was
Bob Thurman: 0:30:40 Nixon came late to it, but he was involved. Yes. But, uh, he was, and uh, also Nixon sky, the plumber was the guy who busted Millbrook actually that time he was working for, you know, whatever his name was forgot. I know you're talking about. Yeah. So point is that they were, they were all trained in using drugs to promote their racism and fact and Brock native Americans from Mescalito, you know, and from their ceremonies and block, and then make sure that the black communities had a lot of heroin. His name was stopping. They weren't willing it wasn't, it was the right committee, but they would purposely Sandy it in the British had done that with the Chinese in the 19th century. That's what the opium war was about. Opium war was not because of the legality of opium. It was because the Chinese were me, Hayden legal and refusing to import British opium.
Bob Thurman: 0:31:33 Why the British couldn't pay for tea with cash because they were so popular T in Europe that they were draining the silver resources of Europe. And so they were forcing the Chinese to take opium and raking, therefore the population in those opium, dens, which we take to some Chinese state, but actually the British shoved it down their throats. Wow. It would be the equivalent of some Colombians coming in and invading Washington coming up from Miami and forcing the concert hall to get stoned on cocaine. You know what I mean? It was. So my point is that the, the domineering elite has always used drugs to control majority populations that outnumber them or are more energetic than them. And it was just another instance of that, taking it away from the shrinks, taking it away from the anti alcoholics who cause it's very helpful to overcome alcohol addiction.
Bob Thurman: 0:32:27 Right. You know, the able gain, not only I said, but you know, may have placed like the African ibogaine is very good for heroin. For example. I mean, I don't know Deborah due to either heroin. I became, but I should, but I never did. But either I will in the future, if I live longer, I'll experiment with all of them because they're all very useful. Yeah. In a setting. Also, if you're misdirected in the set, if you get a vulnerable, open your crew, you're projecting them. Apparatus is temporarily suspended. Then you're directly merging with your field of experience. Then you see all kinds of new things about it that you didn't notice because the minute you look at it, you wrap a concept on it. I know that's what I know I had of time. I was going to see it. That's all I see.
Bob Thurman: 0:33:12 Right. So when that temporarily is suspended, which most of those psychedelics in Theo Genex as Houston Smith column, what that's, what they do. They temporarily freeze your immediate stuffing, everything into your own preconceptions. And then you see if you see the heaven in a Dew drop, you like a poet like Emily Dickinson, you know, you see the lamps of the streets of heaven in a, in a, in a drop of Dew and you blow your mind. And then the people who used it well, didn't just do that. They had like, like, so Tim sort of never did anything else much after the initial thing. Whereas Roundup Richard became Ron Dawson. He really explored the mind and he helped a lot of people. And he really did well, cause he didn't only do that. Right. I mean just sex his paintings. It's like someone who only meditates without learning.
Bob Thurman: 0:34:04 And it, Hey, they just suspending their bad feeling, but they don't get rid of it. It comes back when they stopped doing it. So then they get addicted to going in and running away and doing that. Whereas the real thing is true. Learn how it works and learn to project things that are helpful out of love and compassion instead of projecting boring things out of domination and alienation. Do you know what I mean? Right. That's the key, that's the key. So it's like, you know, you were bringing the language back into it. Language is fantastic. It's a wonderful thing, but it never can express reality. You know, Buddha Buddha gave them the Copenhagen declaration 2,600 years ago. He did physics six, they had high energy <inaudible> and he say, guys, none of the theories, including anything I say is going to capture reality. It's inexpressible. You know, I agree you can, you can, you can experience it. So then you'll kind of know it at the deepest way. But then, so I'm so sorry. You can't explain it to anybody else. You can only explain to them methods they could use to themselves discover because we, human beings have the ability to do that. We have amazing, amazing brains. We have super computers right there in the skull and all up and down the spine. You know,
Duncan Trussel: 0:35:26 That's one of the many things I love about Buddhism is that it isn't really telling you just believe this, it's saying this is a, this is a process that you have take up
Duncan Trussell: 0:35:38 To me. That is one of the many mind blowing things about it. But speaking of the Copenhagen declaration, and this actually leads right into the second question I have for you, which is, uh, listening to a variety of these Tibetan scriptures, I have heard the idea of praying to future Buddhas. And I wanted to ask you about that. I guess there's two parts of the question, which is what is the Buddhist inter or the, to the Buddhist interpretation of time, right? Is it a thing that is already in existence? In other words, are these future Buddhas somehow already existing? Or is it a thing that's kind of like a quantum soup that is, you know, we're evolving towards, or is it just when they say pray to feet?
Bob Thurman: 0:36:34 Okay. Both of those is this in the sense that, uh, the, uh, Buddha part of being a Buddha as you go into a moment in which all of the past is still there. In other words, the past is currently there. No problem. It's also there. Not only that you can even change the past actually. So wait, wait, it's magic. You can actually change it. You can, you could repair every damage that happened in the past. In fact, you can figure it out in a way. And because it's just, uh, it's it's, it has an illusionary quality. It is like a movie you can really edit the movie, you know what I'm saying? Wow. And, uh, and then as far as the future goes, it's not like there's a set future. It knows which would mean that that would be like a mechanistic way of looking. Bob Thurman: 0:37:24 And it would mean that there's no freedom. Our choices are meaningless. It's just going to unravel. There was a guy who was a contemporary of checking Mooney, Buddha 2,600 years ago, who talked out and he had a famous thing he would do where he would give a lecture. He was a well-known teacher. He was arrival of the boondocks actually, but he couldn't really do it, but he tried PayPal. He had a thing where we'd have a ball of twine and it would be all around in a rivaled up. And he would give his talk about, don't worry, we'll get liberated. It'll just happen by itself. And then he would throw the ball, holding the one in and the boy would unravel. And when it finally was no more a ball, it would fall to the floor. Bob Thurman: 0:38:06 Cool. He was a fatalist in other words. Right. And whatever rejected that, you know, but the thing about it, you know, the collar chakra, yes. The Dalai Lama loves to so much. And he had a special permission actually from Selman some days to, uh, to teach it may times, which usually in the history in Tibet, they did once or twice a year. I mean once or twice in a lifetime, they would do chakra though, grand what they called the grand initiation. And he said, it's 34 times 35 times publicly. And he's done it many more times than the maybe 50, 60 times in, just in the monastery. And, uh, what that means is a time machine. So it has that check where the wheel is, like we say about how good, nice wheels, you know, you get a new Tesla and somebody will say, Hey, great wheels.
Bob Thurman: 0:38:57 You know? Yeah. So it's convenient machine check. Right. You know, but here this time machine is not like HG wheels where you go around in time, which you imagine to be a sort of fixed medium, a really real thing. The way it is, time is also illusory like an illusion. It's also magical like spaces. And so, yes. So what happens is that the book, but when you become a Buddha, you know, when Duncan put our comes there, although you might have a different name and you know, there's a big thing when you meet it up the hotel, yes. They put a such and such in such a university, your name will be so uncertain and it's considered, what's considered to be thing to have that from a Buddha because it's not secret either. And, uh, because then you get a kind of confidence about it, about it. But the thing is that, and therefore, when a Buddha, Buddha has a boat is at the vowel, right? He's not going to attain Nirvana until everybody's in Nirvana. He's not going to leave anybody behind, Hey, what about us?
Bob Thurman: 0:40:02 But they in his, but he did it actually because in his reality, which is more real reality, he show all our possible futures of all beings. It's like unbelievable. It's like super computer to the super-super. So all multiple possible futures he saw and he saw we could have brilliant, boring, endless suffering futures, a bit boring. I said, as a dog and a cat and a crocodile, and then back even hell and heaven, God's in pleasures of heaven, but dead falling from that point round and round and round, you know, stupidly instead of becoming really happy, like a being that makes everybody else happy and is fully happy in the midst of everything and empties the hell, et cetera. I mean, it really fixes it up, fixes up the infrastructure and yes, supposedly, I mean, that's the theory, right? So it goes into all those futures of all beings and he knows all of their pasts, that they're ones that he sees around him and he, and in a way, so everybody's around him from old time because the moment that he's in has every moment in it, but he knows that it's not fixed a future.
Bob Thurman: 0:41:16 So there then his, his vow is enacted. So it's like he hasn't broken his vow because he sees every being, as they're going to get there, he's going to make sure of it. And he's been in a position where we can actually be effective in doing so. And, and he will be at the cornerstone at the crossroads, at the juncture in the moment between their deaths and rebirths and their future lives, where he will be able to guide them and give him a little leg up over here. I'd like, since you pointed a road, sign that way, because unfortunately he can't just blast them into his own state because the point is that that takes the shit infinite energy he has access to. And we all do, but we are aware we don't want it for an energy. If we feel blessed that my energy will be frightened, we'll think it's going to kill us.
Bob Thurman: 0:42:09 We'll get more tights to resist it, keep it because we think we have a boundary and that we're not, it it's one of us is different from us, it's alien to us. So we would experience a huge burst of bliss as the sort of deathly thing like nuclear Fisher or something, you know, we would hate it, right? So he only, we can only find it from the inside out because we're already in touch with it at the deepest subatomic level of our B more. So you could say of our son cells. And so his whole thing is to tease us, create environments and situations, et cetera, that will cause us to feel safe, to open and to understand and use our intelligence and to see, okay, it's all relative. He can't really get me that bad. Oh, I'm really like that. And I can identify with it.
Bob Thurman: 0:43:01 And so on which we do anyway, right? We identify with our kids Tenafly with our loved ones, our parents, sometimes after we get it, we give up blaming them. They get identified with them and know grandparents, you know, and we have that ability to do, to amplify our identification. And what a Buddha is, is this inconceivable thing of someone who has amplified their identification, infinitely, incorporating all space and time and joining all the other Buddhists who are all there all the time. They never leave because they are everywhere and in time to time too. So, so my point is that way they fulfill their bodhisattva vow that they stay with us and they, we screwed up this life. Well, next life there'll be at that point .And they'll know, they're like Groundhog day. Everything is Groundhog day for them in relation to us. Do you know what I'm saying? Yes. And, uh, sorry. I mean, that's the concept. And actually the key to the concept is every single beat, whoever was a Buddha, which is infinite numbers of them. Cause we've got a lot in there versus beginning. Like I said, it's not like it's some big bang. That's just a local cycle, you know? And so there's endless numbers of them and they all think they're you and me.
Bob Thurman: 0:44:18 What do you mean? They all think of you and me. Well, have you ever been almost totally empathetic in a love situation or a new something or a parent of a child, are you pregnant or any other being, and you suddenly see yourself from them, what else? We can just switch like that normally, Hey, you're over there. Okay. But the point is, this is a being who
has managed to do that. Totally. And that's why they're compassionate. That's why they don't, it can't bear are suffering
Duncan Trussel: 0:44:47 Because they feel it.
Bob Thurman: 0:44:49 But you know, just like sometimes you get in an ecstatic state. I know you have, and you dip your toe running from one delight to another and you kind of didn't notice it. And then later, like when you were called calm down or whatever next day. Oh, Al you know, um, yeah, but then you don't even notice it at the time. So this is such an extreme bliss of being everything and everywhere, other freedom, bliss, void, indivisible, or bliss, empty indivisible. Wow. That they, that they can feel all our agonizing pain, even if we're in hell. And then they can know by feeling it where it is. We need to open up to a right. Listen, this crunch of it. You know what I'm saying? Because if they came into it, it's like you run up and hug a paranoid person. They're going to freak out. They're going to,
Duncan Trussel: 0:45:44 Yeah, you can't, you can't
Bob Thurman: 0:45:45 Can't. So this is a beautiful thing. I don't want only to kind of got into it recently after 40 50 years, you know, the Buddha nature is the one, you know, in a way, and by the way, you're studying Tibetan, which is best place to study, but they will tell you it's all Indian, you know, the Holy land, you know, the Holy land for them, you know that there is a, they call it the Holy land is India where Buddha judo, he didn't come. He didn't come to Tibet. He lived in India. And one of his, many of his followers eventually did a thousand years later. And then, and then I think the great editors of India realized the finders are coming. You know, the, the military militarized foreigners first, the Persians Arabs, the new European sail becoming, cause we have such a party here.
Bob Thurman: 0:46:38 We're having our name. Karoli Baba party, where Jay ragas said, we're dead dancing. And we have, we have couplets. It's a topless world mango. That's really funny, Indiana. Indiana is an amazing place. And so, and then the guys dragging their wives in the sack behind them or their camel. They're not having fun because the fun is having in a sack behind the camera. They can't, they can't enjoy the camel that much and they're gonna come. And they were tramped boss and they knew it. So they put the Juul it's up in Tibet, you know, to bring it out. Of course they lit it left a lot of jewels in India, but they know they burnt hundreds of universities and monasteries and libraries that Muslims just one day can, you know, around a thousand years, Tibet, Tibet became
Duncan Trussell: 0:47:30 Like a heart
Bob Thurman: 0:47:30 <inaudible>. Yes, exactly. Exactly. And they will tell you that they don't ask, like we invented everything here in Tibet. They don't, although they also didn't just passively, just reproduce everything repeated. They developed more subtle things. It was fantastic. They did,
Duncan Trussell: 0:47:49 This is, this is so mind blowing. I, it sounds, you know, when I, when I've been listening to these scriptures, I, you know, saying things like for some people I have a low-key to Shamara is just a cool breeze on their face, you know, for some people they get to me and I love it. It's just so trippy. But I just to, just to confirm, because I really am trying, I really am so inspired by some of these ideas. It sounds like the Buddhist cosmology seems to match like multi-verse theory or the idea that there is, are multiple timelines, multiple universes. And within these universes, there are multiple sort of manifestations of an identical mind, but taking on all these different forms.
Bob Thurman: 0:48:39 Yeah. I've got some <inaudible> out. We do a Buddha, you could have many bodies, you could have 10,000 Dunkins. You're going to be doing the Dunkel transom podcast in the worst uptight place impact this house.
Duncan Trussell: 0:48:56 Okay. Well, fortunately not there yet, but, but, and I won't keep you, I won't keep, ah, I'm sorry, these questions, but, but, but if there is an enlightened version of you and an enlightened version of me, then, then are we entangled with that being, in other words, I can understand why to have a Buddha tell you here's what your name's going to be. And here's where you're going to be from that point forward. Could you connect with that version of you
Bob Thurman: 0:49:27 If you try. And you know, when we imagined something really great, that means we can actually experience it and it can be actual, although any relative thing has an illusionary quality, right? <inaudible> did you read my Vimalakirti Sutra translation ever?
Duncan Trussell: 0:49:48 No.
Bob Thurman: 0:49:49 I love that it's in a line for free. You can download it. I'll tell you where, but I'm saying, and being able to character you at the end of the suit, Doug, he meets the check him when he Buddha, because he was, he lives in town nearby checking money, but he's from another universe and check him money. Although he's a layman, not a monk, but he's respected for his wisdom by shocking money. Like the label at rides guy out of there and the monk, nice guy. So then he goes to visit check-in on him and, and he takes a whole group in his house with him. He has a thousand people in a thousand. He has like a doctor who like house that you could have thousands of people at us in like house outside in this big city. So he picks up whole assembly in his hand and he moves them over to the Grove, outside of town where Buddha staying comes to see the Buddha, because they don't want to say, but at the end of a long teaching and being like you're at his house.
Bob Thurman: 0:50:37 So then Buddha says to them, Oh, Hey, I'm so glad to see you. You've been unwell. We hear you're elderly. And it's so nice that you're here with all your friends and so forth. A lot of his own monks were there with time, put us on monks, whatever. And so he said, so you got, you want her to see the Buddha, right? You came over to see the border, right? So now that you're here, how do you see the Buddha? And so he was looking at him and he says, well, I don't see the Buddha. When I see a body in front of me, I don't see the put on. And he goes at that level where, you know, what's called the dharmakaya of the Buddha, the reality body with Vista translated as reality. That's just teaching body, but reality body, it was the ultimate meaning of Dharma is reality itself.
Bob Thurman: 0:51:22 And so he says, Oh, I know he's tall. He's down at that level. So that means, he knows that Buddha feels he's being milliCare ti Buddha feels he's everybody in the audience. Buddha is everywhere in the galaxy know in many of these two tribes, but Buddha starts to teach. You often create a performance art piece for the students in which he will create a vision that they temporarily see of the Buddha teaching a bunch of students in 5,000 different plants simultaneously. Wow, that's your multiple universe? No, he sticks his tongue when he teaches the tents Indian wisdom to travel, not in every version, but because there are different light versions, but in the 25,001 on up, he sticks out his tongue first. And then the light comes out of the middle of this. He has a big tongue, by the way, like yoga, you can put it up on forehead and the tip and he, and then light comes out of his tongue and they suddenly see that he's teaching this in countless worlds.
Bob Thurman: 0:52:23 Like you were looking at two mirrors facing each other, just endlessly. And so what, the reason he does that is that, you know who we do something good, or when we learn something, we think, Oh, I'm the only one who's struggling with this. And he's showing that all over the universe is not empty of human beings. It's not a bunch of stones out there. And gut dinosaurs, endless numbers of humanoid environments. It's already there saying that from thousands of years and the people who are more happy. Yes. They can travel with mine, traveling like dream projection sort of thing consciously. And they come, when Buddha teachers here, they come other worlds and they go other worlds. So they were able to do that. They say they don't need a metal spaceship. They don't need Steven Spielberg's close encounter machine. They don't need that. They just go with their buying.
Duncan Trussel: 0:53:12 Well, D D okay. So this is, uh, this implies a thing <inaudible> But the, the implication would be that should an awakened appear on this planet. We might expect an uptick in sightings of UFO's and uptaken.
Bob Thurman: 0:53:33 We have, we have we already have, we already have sure. I think we have already, but you know, we are, we are the ones that we see, like UFO and moves to me. It's like a mental thing, like our own clunky seven 37 or something, but, but shaped like a saucer or something like that, whatever. But, you know, and they may have, there may be people who have that. There may be peace. Although the one thing that I really got pissed off in their close encounter of the third kind, which is a great flag. I mean, it seems to be a Burg is very cool. Okay. But what I thought was pathetic one, you know, I loved it. And that moment where he finally looks up and then you see times square hanging upside down above you by this powerful anti gravity thing. Is that in that, in the fantasy, you know, in the movie.
Bob Thurman: 0:54:21 Right. And you're seeing this New York city times skirts, Hey right over your head or luminous and glowing, you know, it's wonderful. Okay. And then it <inaudible>, the gangplank comes down and then people come out, but then the guys come out and the guy's like Casper, the freaking ghost. How about looking like something, you know, like looking terminate or a powerful woman, or like a big, huge, beautiful human. What makes you think that somebody with advanced technology is going to look for, Hey, that's so silly. And so supremacist, you know, where the humans, you know, we've got our road, you know, we've got the terminal and they can feed a little thing because man,
Duncan Trussel: 0:55:17 Like it can make a UFO. It can prime it. Yeah.
Bob Thurman: 0:55:20 <inaudible> so that was, that was catering to all sort of American humanoid supremacy thing. You see? Oh yeah, they got a problem from machine, but you know,
Duncan Trussel: 0:55:36 Wow. You annoyed supremacy. Well, you know, as I've been listening, I like these audio books I've been listening. I really have thought if this stuff I'm listening to is not for lack of a better word, an alien transmission. I don't know what is I, it's sad. It's because the perspective of a lot of these teachings is seemingly outside of time, space continuum. And that, that, that in its own right. Produces such a unique quality. The consciousness that's emanating. It is not, does not strike me. It is terrestrial. I mean, clearly it grew out of the earth, but also it does feel like it's coming from somewhere very simultaneous.
Bob Thurman: 0:56:24 So it wasn't that what was good about rum dos? I like to go that way, it'll wrap the us was always whizzes a one, you know, and he was always, you know, there was a great middle book term that was developed at Millbrook called up leveling and which Ronda's would use that term. And then he would sometimes say, you know, in a stressful situation, you sort of see the bigger picture and you closed down and then you act more kindly and more beneficially in a difficult situation, et cetera. And that's the up leveling idea, you know, instead of staying in a certain network where you're trapped in a certain thing, so you, you got, you were very close with him, right. And you often went and then when he, when he wasn't there, what happened? How did you handle that? That's what I want to know a few Academy. Bob Thurman: 0:57:10 What, I mean, it's, it's perfect that you're looking into the Dalai Lama and the books and things. And we, we, we, I kind of met neem. Karoli pop all through the heart of Christina does because I didn't meet him. I saw him, but I never met him because I was sort of in another world, you know, writing all my books, I'd never taken a Buddhist thing and I didn't go to the Hindu temple, but my stupidity, but I'm fortunate. I didn't realize you have a Buddha and the Hindu temple, but you did. And, and so I lament that, I missed him and I missed a lot of really great Lama said I know about now. And I never got to meet because I was, I had to work. You know, I didn't, I didn't have the money to just be around, hanging out all the time, how to afford a family and do it give teachings at school. So, so what, what is going on with, with rum, Doss is folks and yourself, now that he's not there and you have clarity and you have, um, you know, that we don't go to, didn't go to Maui this time. Of course we couldn't. COVID had, I don't know if they'll renew the thing in Maui or maybe they'll do it in California to Ohio. I don't know what's going on. So what, what is going on, but more and more important than politically or socially what's going on in your mind. That's what I want. Yeah.
Duncan Trussel: 0:58:21 I mean, you know, I feel like it's so funny. You say you miss these lobbies. I feel like I'm, I missed Ram DassI, because of rom Doss, I have a practice. I have David, Nichtern. I have a meditation teacher because of the, my association with that song guy. Now I'm practicing and reading and now, but I wasn't doing it when I was in going to those things. So I feel guilt a little bit or a sense of under utilizing or not plugging in as much as I potentially could have during the times I spent with him. And I, I know that idea to him. He always said that trust your ego.
Bob Thurman: 0:58:56 And so he thinks, or how he would be act two when you're feeling this and that that's really good,
Duncan Trussel: 0:59:03 Your conversations with them, you know, naturally I like that. You know, or like, you know, the, the, the other day even I was, and I don't, you know, again, I, I like Robert Anton Wilson advice with most of these things, which has maintained agnosticism. So you don't
trust yourself with a lot of these things. Don't get to her what Chogyam Trungpa shade, sad, which is just this, it it's there, but don't necessarily, don't necessarily
Bob Thurman: 0:59:25 Have to crystallize
Duncan Trussel: 0:59:27 It and turn it into all things. But, uh, you know, when I went right after my mom died, I, I, Rob goo took me to his house. That's the first time I got to really be with him. And, uh, and he did, you know, we sat together. He was crying and he was looking at me in the eye and I, and, but, uh, I do after it was whatever this exchange between us was when it was over, all I knew is that I didn't really quite understand what had happened there. Uh, and then, uh, but the other day I was just, I can't remember if I was falling asleep or meditating, or all of a sudden I had that vivid memory of being back there, except this time he was saying here, I put this inside of you. So that when you're,
Bob Thurman: 1:00:18 Oh, really <inaudible>, I fell asleep. It
Duncan Trussel: 1:00:24 Was to us, you know, it's like, I think that the way my mind is, you know, dealing with the loss is by, uh, on one level, trying to really respect what he taught regarding, you know, kind of like when he was pointing and saying, look at them, you know, that is the message that I was getting from him in his last days, which is that, uh, we know what's so funny is before I ever met him.
Bob Thurman: 1:00:53 Yeah. Miracle story
Duncan Trussel: 1:00:56 Or whatever, before I ever met him, I had this dream about him. I was standing at the edge of a long pier. It was the Richard Alpert. You met like young, Bob Thurman: 1:01:06 Wow. <inaudible>
Duncan Trussel: 1:01:11 Standing at the edge of this pier anyways, handsome. And he was charismatic. And he was standing at the edge of this pier, looking out at the ocean. And he turned and looked at me and then looked out of the ocean and said, I don't know. I think I'm
going to go there. And that was this dream then. Yes. And then the next day I remember reading online, he had fallen or he was in the hospital and I thought, what the heck? I don't even, I, and then my mom had a dream about him before I ever went to these retreats where he said to her,
Bob Thurman: 1:01:45 That's so good.
Duncan Trussel: 1:01:47 Yeah. So I don't, I think about those, it's just, you know, whatever. But, but to me, the,my encounter with him, and especially the very last, uh, Mala ceremony he did at the retreat, knowing the state he was in, but then seeing Really seeing how completely
Duncan Trussel: 1:02:15 There he was and how he was fully giving himself to the people there. And that, uh, there was just such a, a beauty, I don't know, a better word for it than a true sophistication, like kind of possibility. And, um, so yeah, my, my, my wife is broke. Everyone's got a broken heart about it. I have, I have a broken heart about it, but to put it into perspective, you were talking, we were talking earlier about throwing and breaking things. So just in, in the, uh, love everywhere, tell the truth, spirit that just the night before he died, uh, I had been in a fight with my wife and I went down in the garage and I was so bad. And there was a picture of him sitting and I threw it on the ground And I was so mad. And then the next day he died. So to me, that
Duncan Trussel: 1:03:13 Is the, as, since then I've been, I have a meditation practice and I've been really working with that part of me and watching it.
Bob Thurman: 1:03:22 It will, of course, they gave us chapter six, chapter six. You should listen to again and again, it's really, ah, yeah, I know exactly. Yes.
Duncan Trussel: 1:03:35 For anxious patients to Shante David chapter six, it's the patient. And I do listen to that. I also listen to it with some grim sense of like, Oh no, because of course, jaunty David is saying, you know, of all the things to worry about. It's anger, a lifetime of practice destroyed in a moment of anger. All of it, like just got gone, but, you know, so I guess to answer your question, I only now feel like I'm getting to know him. And while I was there, I feel like I was a little frivolous in, in, in my relate in, cause I just didn't understand what it was. I couldn't
Bob Thurman: 1:04:15 Know. I know I knew it was, but you did though. And then, yeah. That's why I'm saying you can change the past. You know, you realize that he knew that you knew, he also knew that you were thinking you didn't know and it Sandra and he saw it through and maybe superficial thing. Had you been able to see it, re-experience it in a completely different way. I promise you. It really well. It really well,
Duncan Trussel: 1:04:37 I believe you. I mean this, but to me, that is the, the, the gift he left us. And your story confirms what my feeling has been, which is the gift he left us was each other. That, that, that was the, that was his parting gift. And, and, and in that, in, in, I think the connection between all of us and people who didn't come to the retreats, people who were just, uh, whose lives were transformed by his teachings,
Bob Thurman: 1:05:05 He's, that's where
Duncan Trussel: 1:05:07 That's, he's there. And he's to meet my, I joke with my wife sometimes it's like, now that he is no longer embodied <inaudible> Yeah. <inaudible> Bob Thurman: 1:05:28 Making it happen. That's really great. And a, and a Rama, Ramesh ready book is great. Have you been reading the book that you'll see the book? It's really great. It's really, really nice. And, uh, my wife has been reading it, then it tells some of the stories had Millbrook and all kinds of things. And, uh, I enjoy that part too. It's really great.
Bob Thurman: 1:06:25 Roger. Roger. I never hung out with him. Although I used to pick up some of his children's when they would be sick and take them to the hospital, but I said, but I never sat down with him. You know, I was like, Oh, blah, blah, blah. But now I am appreciating him to see him feeling his presence in kg. And they're like, Nina, maybe if she never met him, but cheapest, uh, the ma you know, that the ma was associated with him. I could feel that presence. It's like a family. We all have. It's really nice. I really is.
Duncan Trussel: 1:07:01 It is, it is really nice. It, I think there's a, a feeling of worry right now. Some people have a feeling of worry that once the pandemic ends, that what was happening, what was happening in Hawaii, won't repeat it. That that will, we've lost that ability to commune. I hope together. And I hope that's not the case, but I do think it's a bit of a
Bob Thurman: 1:07:28 Well sort of, we all work on it all. We'll see what we can do. I think we have to, we have to know the whole planet needs to, you know, th that's what I'm thinking. We've learned from the COVID actually, which is that we can be together and went through the co the, the global brain, you know, the bad guys are also rushing around in the global brain doing pull your propaganda and things, but it is a global brain that we do have, you know, and, uh, look, Hey, we're chatting in North Carolina down there and the tower Hill state, and I'm up here in the woods and in New York. And, uh, and, um, yeah, and we are, we, we send, we can beat together. I feel your presence very much right here. Um,
Duncan Trussel: 1:08:13 I feel your mean, don't you, don't you think that, that the implication of this ability to communicate, because there's a precedent here, there has been a Buddha and maybe there's one, you know,
Bob Thurman: 1:08:27 Well, of course there are many, there are many, but they're in a form that people can deal with. Now, if a Buddha came looking like Gooda, it would be like eat tea, you know, very much, I think, you know, had to create the creative people. I really great Hollywood movies Saifai especially, I really liked that. Even the comic books, I love them. They're so cool. Black Panther. I CA I couldn't believe how,
Duncan Trussel: 1:08:52 Oh, the best it's the, it's the best, and it is being spoken through them, but you know, what really gives me goosebumps is this possibility that we're all beginning to, you know, it's like watching monkeys, uh, encounter fire for the first time, you know, like, like watching, like the wild things that we're doing with the internet. I mean, we just have seen like the,
Bob Thurman: 1:09:19 Yeah, yeah. That's taking it. It's going in the wrong direction, but, uh,
Duncan Trussel: 1:09:25 Exactly taking a hit, but just like, I'm sure when whatever the protal hominids were that encountered fire, you better believe there were two generations
Bob Thurman: 1:09:34 Of burn victims
Duncan Trussel: 1:09:37 Who just didn't know how it works. They were setting fire, burning things. That's Q and R Q Anon is like burn victims from this new type of guy. But what's exciting to me about it is because they, what happens when, when one of these Buddhas on the planet or when one that is still sort of manifesting, uh, what happens when, instead of the deer park. And it's a very slow sort of, um, distillation and the movement into tobacco people coming from Tibet to Gavin data and bringing them what happens when it just goes,
Bob Thurman: 1:10:16 Hey, Jackie, through the whole Shambala,
Duncan Trussel: 1:10:19 What happens then to me?
Bob Thurman: 1:10:22 Yeah. Oh, definitely. I have certainty as much as one can be certain about everything in the illusory world. Like it relax certain tape, but I am sure. Yes. In fact, I'm upset. I'm always my old original Mongolian Lama. He was sick. He used to disagree with a lot of things, views, whatever, you know, he was very critical, very wonderful, but very kind also, but he did, it became with me. And one argument that I had with him about Shambala, you know, the color chart rotate about where it's scheduled to be happened around 24, 25 or 24 15, something in that area. You know, the whole planet goes like ballistic into goodness, in other words. And, uh, instead of all this sort of half-baked and violence and weird uptight notice and whatever, lack of joy. And, uh, I was always telling, I was arguing with one Tibetan, astrologer astronomer, also old Mongolian guy from poor Yachty yet from Siberia.
Bob Thurman: 1:11:23 Uh, Berto had been in Tibet for decades and, you know, a old guy very wise. And he was insisting that's the correct time. And I was saying, listen, man, this planet is not going to last 400 more years under this mismanagement of these crazy tyrants, you know, there who just sucking money. And they don't, they don't even have fun at it. They don't know how to have fun. And, uh, I said, it has never happened. And we can't, we had waited for 425 years. And I said, and he was disagreeing with me. And he, and his argument was that's, what's written in the scripture. And I said, well, if you are going to change, there are a lot of blue meanies around. Would you give them the exact time
Duncan Trussel: 1:12:03 When you,
Bob Thurman: 1:12:08 And the other argument was that the planet can't tolerate like nuclear Wars and things, and everyone is amazed. We didn't have another nuclear outbreak since Hiroshima, but that doesn't mean we won't, you know, they are really crazy people who are, could eat. Everyone will have case things, you know, they'll have pocket nukes, they're making them all over the place and that's a real danger. And so that's what I've heard. And then my, my old guest <inaudible>, I met his name for a purpose. He, uh, totally intervened. And he said to the old Mongolian guy, the brilliant one, or a little older than him, he said, I think he has a point about me, but even though I'm challenging a scripture actually. And he said, he said, yeah, she has a port. I said, cause I would say, you know, you have no idea of the machinery of destruction that is mobilized on the planet now.
Bob Thurman: 1:13:05 And so we need this kind of magical miraculous intervention and, you know, in a way it's happening from the grass roots, you know, and you know, there's a thing in the loader suit truck that I like where one guy like me, very enthusiastic about the Dharma, it's this girl and that girl, you know, around us got a Lama, the old case, she, this person, that person and David turn to his, you 18 there nigga got him going on that with my wife, got him booked, you know, going with Tibet house, I'm doing it. Spending has taken. And it's really great. He's a good guy. And he used to televise, he was there playing his chair. What does he play? The cello right here? What does he play? He used to play a guitar with random stuff. So he's playing that's right. And, uh, anyway, um, so there we are. And uh, and uh, suddenly some of the Harvard guy is doing something about a dating thing because he was shy and awkward with girls. And then somehow he turned that into Facebook with like 2 million members in a planet
Bob Thurman: 1:14:12 Where people, you know, somebody might say, well, in Buddha's time, they were all linked up. Cause they were all clairvoyant. Cause they were like amazing. There was only seven 50, a hundred thousand people on the whole planet and blah, blah, blah. People can go like that. But actually from Buddhist point of view, he doesn't want to be the grand old days. He wants this to every generation do it better. That's what compassion is about. Well, you knew this. And so suddenly as you say, when you put it as beautiful, you would just, boom. Imagine if the equivalent of Buddha, well actually done a little bit, we'll teach online right now. And 14 million people will listen all over China. Actually they, they get round, they use VPN, they get round the world, firewalls, et cetera. Two of them do, you know the hipper one 14 million people in his fin, his Twitter.
Bob Thurman: 1:15:05 And that's still only a few million. Like how about let's wait till we get to get to a hundred million. If he, and he has to stay lucid, his English is, is getting, you know, he's 85 now, but there'll be younger ones who will, we'll be able to do that. And there'll be younger run and Bronco could do it now. And Katie could do it. Now you are doing it now. And you already know they're reaching out through you and you show you. And they are indivisible when you're really in love and speaking to truth and <inaudible> is doing too. They're all working at it. And it's working at the ground glass roots. And I used to have a way where I would say during the past nightmarish for years, and I say during the nightmarish eight years where we had the earlier ruined election, you know, in Florida, you know, the Supreme court, you normally had this warmongering instead of the environment, president who we're supposed to have, and we actually had elected and he wasn't actually, if they counted, if they had counted Dade County properly, they weren't having voter suppression.
Bob Thurman: 1:16:08 But we know that, but nevermind. So during those different times I was thinking, well, you know something it's natural. It's actually a good sign that the good people are getting better and the planet is getting more in their hands. It's a good sign that the bad people are still running it into the ground because the bad people are so miserable. And they think if they've dominated everybody else, they'll be really happy. And that only actually makes them more miserable, added few lifetimes of that. They might quit. I quit. Right. But the good people are more relaxed. So you can't, you're going to block my vote. Well, nevermind. I'm happy. Anyway. Even you're a bad person. I'm happy how to be happy in jail. I'll be happy here. I'll be happy there. I mean, that does, I'm not making that as an excuse. I'm just saying the good people are more alive. They have more personal energy. They have more inner flow, whatever is happening to them. And the bad people are so
Bob Thurman: 1:17:10 Now, but then they are much more focused on domineering and cheating and doing something. So they keep publishing at the top. They see, come up to the top and then we have to watch them all the time, which is like a big lesson of how not to behave.
Duncan Trussel: 1:17:27 Yes, yes. Yeah. I, I agree like reverse gurus or something and, and, and their pants such a terrible,
Bob Thurman: 1:17:35 You know, like I love Buddhism really liked Jesus more than I did originally. Now that I know he's one of the great rabbis actually. And uh, you know what? You took a while to figure that out. And I really like him, but, but as a religious studies scholar, back when I was still in academia, I went with a friend to see Mel Gibson's movie. I don't know if you ever saw it. Yeah. I went to see it and then I knew I hated it. So my friend did too. So we, we, we made a pact. It, if we feel like leaving, we're going to make each other stay. So we will watch it all the way through. And I saw it in LA in a big fear. And what are the things that did shock me was all these fundamentalist families, you know, like born again, you know, like sort of right-wing, you know, that kind, they were lots of them there and they'd already been to 10 of them.
Bob Thurman: 1:18:30 They'd seen it 10 times. But the thing that really freaked me out and gave me a little bit of encouragement in spite of how awful it was was they had the kids with them and they were whacking them to stay in their seats. You know? And the kids were seeing this total SNM nightmare and so antisemitic and so much of a nightmare. Joe blamed the rabbi blame the rabbit, even, even if the pilot was coming out with clean towels, it was some bullshit. Pilot was so vicious. He was removed by a subsequent emperor because he was killing everybody. He was really horrible. It was his role at Xero to blame. Not that not to, not the rabbis, you know, they were, it was a little, like a little bit of rambunctious. Did Jesus has arrived by boat. You know, he was her great rabbi and he was teaching there. He was teaching the compassionate God, you know, anyway, anyway, it would encourage me, is those kids subliminally. They're being forced to sit there and they're good again, as far away from this ridiculous belief trap as they can, when they grow up and down, we'll try to have a little bit fun in life, you know, and they're not going to see this S and M crap, you know, and Andy Gibson is so freaked out himself personally, right? Even when Jesus is resurrected and all he'll and he's flying in the sky, he still looks pissed off,
Bob Thurman: 1:19:59 You know, and I really love him. And you know, this is a great season. I'm coming back to Buddhism. Let me just come here for one second. But you're doing, you realize that a doesn't, he's not teaching what he's teaching and doing what he's doing. I was trying to Deborah by a desire for you to be a Buddhist or a me, he doesn't want us, he wants us to be stay in our own culture with our grandma's religion. He has a big thing about the reason Buddhism is so useful is that we can use it without going into a new kind of, to domination of freak out where we've got to be. That it's because we're thinking it's a religion. Those are, these are, this is high inward, inner science and inner tech. Knology, you know, like to matching the sophistication of the Facebook and Twitter and the computer and zoom and everything.
Bob Thurman: 1:20:49 This is the inner one, how to develop these inner subtleties of this, of our inner computer, our wetware computer disc. And so therefore it can be used without disrupting the cultural matrix where grandma's happy. And you know, at first, when I, cause I w I was annoyed by the Christian Church. So at first I was kind of like, Oh yeah, Buddhism is much better. I want to do it. And the dialogue and kept pushing me not to be like that. And then finally, and then there was a monk and then six, and then finally, one day I had this epiphany where I happened to switch on the tube to some people on TV, standing up for Jesus. I think it was a black church maybe. And you know, they're really getting into it, you know, like, yea h, Jesus. Yeah, no, they weren't like that. And then I was thinking they are standing up for compassion for a divine emanation of compassion, however, whatever their theology might be, but that's what they're doing. And they, and so nice. They just go, Jesus. I said, why on earth? Where do I want them to have to call out and be born again for somebody whose name they couldn't pronounce?
Duncan Trussel: 1:22:09 Oh yeah. I don't, I can't say <inaudible> names are all I can say. Shaunti David, that's it? I can say <inaudible>. I remember that choke him.
Bob Thurman: 1:22:22 I know, I know. <inaudible> it with everywhere among bass populations in India and even India and many nations, you a hundred days, and then China and Japan, Korea and central Asia even be around all over the place. And because it didn't interfere like that. Although we're able to, if someone had a nasty view of God, that God was like wanting to make them Supreme, and as you go and kill everybody who didn't believe what they think, then they would learn the Buddhists technology we get to do to adopt, to modify the technology and the theology in such a way that they wouldn't make it anti somebody else. You know what I mean? They would. Yeah. Right. I, yes,
Duncan Trussel: 1:23:06 That's what it's viral. It, it infects the DNA. It gets infections is the wrong word, but it gets into the DNA of things and shows this, this process. And I love that. You know, I, to be honest, I don't know
Bob Thurman: 1:23:20 Whether it's an Episcopalian.
Duncan Trussel: 1:23:21 I like Tibetan Buddhists. I wanna, you know, I wanna, I,
Bob Thurman: 1:23:25 But Jesus, but Jesus said the compassionate of the universe, the great mother, you know, you know, I have this rabbi who sent me a great book where he claims he's proven, I haven't read it. I have time to read it yet. He's proven that the name of Yahweh, Y H w H is actually the secret name of your way. <inaudible> and he says, look, that is the male and female pronouns. So that the Shaheen now what's one way to God in the ancient, most ancient level of the tradition, he says as your terror level. So there, so there is a God, the mother, in other words, he's making, he's written a book like that. And he's excited. He heard that I was interested in that. And I didn't like the idea that the Shakina, at least she comes back on the Sabbath for the Jews, but the Christians, all they have is the Holy ghost. They don't have a mom, you know? Cause they they're the Romans to dad. I'm telling you, the Christianity got a little twisted by the Romans. That's a problem. That's a problem. Well, they killed, they killed. And they had to bury there. Now we're just digging them up. You know, they buried them and he hit them because they were destroyed them in the moments where they wanted it to fit with their authority, their domination and render unto Caesar, you know, render.
Duncan Trussel: 1:24:48 Well, I'll send I'll S I'll send you something really bizarre. I, I, I, that, uh, and not to get too off track, but I did just, it's funny. Cause you're sort of alluding to the East Indian trading company that were the dominators who were the ones I'm I'm thinking.
Bob Thurman: 1:25:03 Oh yeah, that was the greatest. That was the British the, yeah, yeah, yeah, sure.
Duncan Trussel: 1:25:08 The British, the East Indian trading, the East Indian trading company, they're the ones were slavers. They're the ones who came up with on wall street. The contracts are shorting this stuff that just happened in the news. They're the ones who innovated the way to profit from failure. They're the ones who are poisoning everyone, opium East Indian trading company. I will send you their, their logo. Ha Gnostic demiurge
Bob Thurman: 1:25:35 Oh, I I'd like to see that. Please send me
Duncan Trussel: 1:25:39 The control creature. I'll send it to you. It's so good.
Bob Thurman: 1:25:42 Your love Robert, Anton Wilson. I did too. I really liked that too. He's
Duncan Trussel: 1:25:46 The best. Yeah. I don't mean to get off track
Bob Thurman: 1:25:49 That's out on the track and they know that, uh, that guy, Dan Brown, he sort of uses all those things, hit his novels and everything and that's okay. He popularized in certain way.
Duncan Trussel: 1:25:58 It's I like it as a hobby. I know it's cool. But I is
Bob Thurman: 1:26:04 Next book though, Dan Brown was going to have to mumify uh, Tom Hanks!
Duncan Trussel: 1:26:15 Which would be fine. It would be fine.
Bob Thurman: 1:26:24 So I want to come back to your other question. I have one thing for you party, party gift. Okay. And that is, I have something I call a consolation prize. Do you remember that? I think I mentioned it once it in Maori, but, but I met a detailed probably because they weren't as, as loose as you, but the whole group, but you know, that's how I wanted it to myself. It's primarily, but I know I'm chairing again at my elder age and this constellation prize has to do with, I've been in 50 years in this life doing all this stuff and I'm still kind of a Turkey, you know, in my own way. And now in hen and I lose it or whatever, I'll go, I'm getting better. My wife was sincere. You're improving a little bit here or there. Or you backslide one step forward, two back, two forward.
Bob Thurman: 1:27:13 Like so, but the thing is this I've gotten far enough though that I am certain I'm going to be able to, I have no doubt about it and I will be, I will enjoy Nirvana. And I'll be in that infinite moment, eternal moment, which doesn't ignore the past or future incorporates the multiple futures of the multiple paths. I know that I'm going to do that. And then this is the amazing thing I figured this out. Do you know the Buddha story just before he attains Nirvana under the tree, he has two previous insights and one of them is he remembers all his infinite previous lives, which means he remembers being every conceivable type of being, including any kind of Saifai being, they might've cooked up on star Trek. You know, not just on this planet, he were in, cause it's beginning infinite. He remembers all of them, bam like that. Bob Thurman: 1:28:09 Then he suddenly realizes that he was in tangled with every other beam, infinite numbers, all that time into it. Right. So then he knows all their previous tapes. And then he gets specifically see each word where they've been locally and recently in the last 50 lifetimes. Right. And then he looks forward and he sees all the possibilities for all of them and he knows he'll he's cool now. So he will be, he could be many beatings for each of them, those that. So he's just, and then, but the root, but whatever, I don't want to go further there. What I'm saying is the reason he was able to remember those previous lives, which we cramped is because we don't remember them because we suffered and we suffering. Now, we don't need to remember when I broke my leg in a previous life. I don't need that.
Bob Thurman: 1:28:54 Right. But the point is he realized he has been in Nirvana that life, the life energy is Nirvana is love. Life is love bliss. And he'd always been even, he was breaking his leg, even when he was a vegetarian, dinosaur, beaten by a T-Rex. He was in Nirvana because are life energy of the T-Rex and himself. And every cell in his body was bliss. So he could never remember it all because he was watching the movie on the projected on the screen of infinite bliss, void indivisible of his own past. Right? So what that means is now we were there actually with really feeling happy because we are joining souls, you know, thanks to Rob <inaudible> and check him on and whatever. So we're happy right now. We're really happy. And because of our wives scolding us and that's also really helpful and it really is.
Bob Thurman: 1:29:52 And so we were happy, but we were a little frustrated, but not, we're not, we think we can. Okay. But when we do get to people there, even if it's a hundred lifetimes, a million lifetimes, we will remember this time. We will revise our experience of this time. And will people now constellation the constellation that you asked about how to hook up to that future. You follow. So I can only do it with a kind of trust in the universe. I love a loving face. Reasonable though, were reasonable, not applying for it. Not against reason, reasonable by all physics and all subatomic and all Copenhagen declaration and then Einstein. And they're wonderful things. Even when the material is nail is new. So people just mid scientists have discovered about matter mazing in the quantum computers in tongue. Wonderful. So that's a constellation. Anyway. I want to leave you with that constantly. <inaudible> it is. So now we can go down and we can pick up the shattered glass of the picture frame, put the nice new glass. And now I've been wanting to fix that thing for a while. I'm sorry, dear. I lost my temper. No, no, no, no.
Duncan Trussell: 1:31:38 I enjoy talking to you. I was so cool. It's really fun!
Love Your Enemies
Life has a way of thwarting our plans, leaving even the most sainted of us frustrated and fearful at times. But losing our cool causes more problems than it solves. So when people and circumstances conspire against us, how can we douse the white-hot fires of rage? How can we break the cycle of hurt, […]
Psychedelics, Christianity & Cultural Creatives with Bob Thurman
A talk on the role of cultural creatives in creating peaceful social revolutions and how Buddhism’s spread influenced modern counter culture movements of the West.[more]