Wake Up to Your Nondual Spiritual Nature:
A Weekend Journey of Self-Realization
Originally offered through the Open Circle Center, this eight-hour "deep dive" into the nondual nature of reality guides you step by step in questioning your accustomed identities and assumptions and waking up to your true self, beyond the mind. Perfect both for the new seeker who wants a concise introduction to spiritual awakening and for the seasoned seeker (or finder) who wants to clarify and deepen their understanding, this video course can be watched over several weeks or used as the focus of a solo weekend retreat.
Each of the five classes features teachings, pointing-out instructions, guided meditations and inquiry, and dialogue with participants. For those who might be considering joining the School for Awakening or working with me as a spiritual teacher and mentor, this is is an excellent introduction to my teaching orientation and approach.
Excerpt from Course Introduction
Living from Truth in Challenging Times
Whether through chronic or life-threatening illness, personal loss, or global or political uncertainty, life has a way of challenging our connection with truth and inviting us to find an ever-deeper, more unshakable ground of happiness and peace. How do we remember and embody who we really are even when the going gets rough? This video webinar with Stephan explores this core issue through teachings, guided meditation, and dialogue in the direct approach to spiritual realization.
Falling in Love with Your Divine Imperfection
“In the world to come, God will not ask me, why were you not Moses? He’ll ask me, why were you not Zusya?” —Hasidic master Reb Zusya of Hanipol
Not surprisingly in our goal-oriented, self-improvement culture, many seekers turn the journey of awakening into the pursuit of spiritual perfection. When I’m really awake, they believe, I’ll be just like Ramana, Nisargadatta, or some other saint or sage, free from human foibles. But spiritual awakening actually has quite the opposite effect: after years of struggling to be perfect, our hearts break open to the beauty and inherent perfection of our precious, messy humanness. In this satsang, we explore the divine invitation to love ourselves just as we are.
The Pathless Path to Genuine Awakening
In the Tibetan tradition, the process of spiritual transformation is divided into three parts: ground, path, and fruition. The ground is the nature of reality, as it is, consciousness, the absolute—abiding, unchanging, and undisturbed by whether we realize it or not. The path is the process through which we realize the ground experientially, in our own heart and bones, and make it our lived reality. In other words, it’s the way the ground comes to fruition in this very human life.
In the nondual world these days, there seems to be a tendency to collapse the path as if it didn’t exist. Consciousness has always been your very essence, your very own true nature, so why do anything to realize it? After all, you already are it, and any seeking just reinforces the illusion of a separate doer. Yet as long as you haven’t directly experienced the nondual nature of reality for yourself, you won’t be able to free yourself from suffering and confusion.
In this satsang, we talk about the importance of genuine awakening, the stages in which awakening tends to unfold, and what you can do to help make yourself more “awakening prone.”
Interview with Rick Archer of Buddha at the Gas Pump.
Finding the Dark Inside the Light
At the darkest time of year, we’re invited to rediscover the eternal light that abides in the midst of the dark. Christians celebrate the luminous appearance of the Christ child, the son of God and the embodiment of love and redemption. Jews celebrate the holy miracle of the oil lamp that illuminates the Temple far longer than expected and offers inspiration in dangerous circumstances. Japanese Buddhists commemorate Buddha’s enlightenment at dawn on December 8. In a darkening world, we have the opportunity to revel in a radiant truth that cannot be dimmed or extinguished.
The Liberating Power of Presence
When we first embark on the spiritual journey, awareness may be a quality we cultivate through the practice of meditation. But as our understanding matures, we realize that awareness is always already present as the background of all experience. As a result, our practice shifts from meditation to what in Dzogchen is called non-meditation—letting go of all effort to meditate and allowing our natural state of awake awareness, or unconditional presence, to shine forth. In the light of this nondual presence, limiting beliefs, patterns, and emotions self-liberate, and freedom dawns.
The Dance of Relationship
Intimate relationships are a paradoxical challenge. At the deepest level they nourish and inspire us and invite us to realize our oneness with all of life. But at the everyday level they often stir up core reactive patterns and stuck places that obscure our deeper spiritual knowing. In this way, relationship offers an unparalleled opportunity to see through our conditioning, release our reactivity, and free ourselves to be who we really are.