Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Buddha at the Gas Pump

One of the richest resources I’ve discovered on the internet regarding the spiritual boom of our times is Buddha at the Gas Pump, Interviews with “Ordinary” Spiritually Awakening People. I found my way there by searching for more information about Kiran, Mystic Girl in the City.

A skeptic and wide-eyed innocent exist side-by-side within me, so after I finished listening to many of Kiran’s videos on her youtube channel, and musing over her rather sensational story of AWAKENING, I wanted to see if I could find out if she was: real or a fraud! That search led to Buddha at the Gas Pump (Batgap).

At Batgap, Rick Archer has been interviewing the AWAKENED since February 2010. There are now over three hundred interviews on the site.

When I watched my first Batgap interview, Rick’s evident skepticism irritated me. However, as I continued to watch more of the videos, I came to value his pointed questions. After all, anyone can claim to have an AWAKENING, right?

The other thing I really enjoy about Batgap is the variety of AWAKENED interviewed. Although the name of the site embraces Buddhism, and some of the interviewees I’ve listened to have experience with Buddhist spiritual lineages and practices: Adyashanti, Father Thomas Keating, Frances Bennett, and Loch Kelly, not everyone does. Although they all embrace nonduality (I think I’ll do a post on that before I proceed to the religious mystics!), the beliefs and spiritual experiences of the AWAKENED on Batgap are incredibly varied and fascinating.

One of the most interesting (and longer) sessions on the channel is the Group Discussion at Sofia University posted this month in two parts. (Find them here: Part 1Part 2 ) A group of fifteen AWAKENED healers, teachers, therapists, writers discuss the ever popular question of “what constitutes an AWAKENING?”, fallen gurus/spiritual teachers, beings/entities from other dimensions, and healing vs. awakening (humanity vs. spirituality).

If you have any spiritual curiosity whatsoever, I highly recommend you visit the Batgap youtube channel. I’ll leave you with this excerpt from About Batgap taken from their website:

Ordinary people everywhere are undergoing a shift to an Awakened state of consciousness which is transforming their understanding of themselves and the world. For some, this shift has been abrupt and dramatic. For others, it has been so gradual that they may not have realized it has occurred. Such shifts, or “awakenings,” are not new: Christ spoke of the “Kingdom of Heaven within,” Buddhists speak of Nirvana, Zen masters of Satori, Hindus of Moksha, but these traditions generally regard these states as rare and difficult to attain.

Many people are therefore skeptical of claims of higher states of consciousness. They find it hard to believe that apparently ordinary friends and neighbors might be experiencing something extraordinary. Maybe they expect Enlightenment to look as remarkable on the outside as it is reputed to be on the inside.

This show will attempt to dispel skepticism and misconceptions by week after week, allowing otherwise ordinary people to relate their experience of spiritual awakening. The terminology is tricky, because there are no universally agreed upon definitions to describe this experience. Also, enlightenment is not something that an individual person “gets”. It’s not even something that the mind can grasp. It’s an awakening to that which contains the mind and all other things. So it’s not surprising that language is inadequate to convey it.

Perhaps those listening to these interviews will become convinced, as I am, that genuine and permanent spiritual awakenings are not just a pipe dream, but are real and are becoming relatively commonplace.

Next Tuesday, I’ll touch on the concept of nonduality before moving on to those religious mystics!