Interview with Rafael Stoneman

Interview with Rafael Stoneman

Rafael Stoneman is part of “Advaita Heart, a small group of friends and family that live in the Ojai Valley who consistently offer support to one another in practical ways.” He writes, “We enjoy each others company and meet regularly to share the highs and lows of our relative situations with the continual focus on remaining fixed in the Absolute awareness. We enjoy making films, offering a hand to those in greater need than us, or just laughing about the paradoxes of our non-dual lives.” Find out more here:

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Interview contents with time cues:

0:00 Background (1 minute)

1:00 The nonduality scene. Neo-advaita, traditional advaita, and general nonduality compared. (3 1/2 minutes)

4:30 Rafael’s activities in the world of nonduality. Nondualists as artists. (3 minutes)

7:44 Self-realization. Limitations of nonduality as it is. Awakening. Spiritual searching. (3 minutes)

11:01 Rafael’s group that meets in Ojai. Talking about nonduality with different people and the “awareness of being present.” Having difficulty being with people who aren’t interested in awareness or who aren’t self-realized and Rafael’s experience with that perception. (4 minutes)

14:47 Life after awakening regarding the expression of qualities of his temperament. Anger issues. Lif change at age 34. Personal life. (4 minutes)

19:11 Going to India. Personal life. Self-inquiry as a practice compared to self-inquiry as living. (3 minutes)

22:31 Silence. More about self-inquiry practice and living. Self-inquiry as presence, as being who you are. (4 minutes)

26:39 The nature of mind. (2 minutes)

28:14 Bodywork, being non-verbal, being more mentally active.

30:10 The teachers Rafael likes and follows out of joy and passion. (2 minutes)

31:43 Rafael asks about Jerry’s interviews and background. “I like talking to people who have nothing to say.” Jerry’s background with nonduality and some spiritual biography. (4 minutes)

36:07 “While I see that everyone is the Self, I don’t see everyone as self-realized,” Rafael says. Not all good teachers are self-realized but are good at teaching. The nature of people talking about this stuff. (4 minutes)

40:08 Rafael’s relationship and experience with Robert Wolfe. (7 minutes)

47:27 “This human experience is painfully beautiful.” Sadness and joy in the world and in Ojai specifically. The global sense of interconnectedness. Alleviating suffering as one’s work. (3 minutes)

50:30 The vision for non-institutionalized meeting places around North America where people experiencing an awakening may go for support. Role of to find such groups and nature of such groups. (5 minutes)

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