Nonduality Talk: Interview with Roger Mahaffey

Interview with Roger Mahaffey

Roger Mahaffey is 23 years old and lives in Columbus, Ohio. He works at an insurance company in technical support. We talk about thoughts, silence, experience, presence, peace, impermanance, darkness, surrender, how life flows, addiction, action, “no me.” And we talk about the doorways to Roger’s understandings: LSD, psilocybin, talks with his grandfather, Buddhism, Mooji.

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Interview Tracks/Contents

1:28 – 3:07 Nonduality scene in Ohio. Gar Drolma Buddhist Center. Garchen Rinpoche.

3:07 – 6:08 Challenge of finding peace. Silences. More Buddhism. Writing. Some rambling.

6:08 – 9:34 Watching thoughts. What is noticed when taking psychedelics.

9:34 – 12:12 How nondualists talk about experience and awareness. Relation to his psychedelic experiences. Talking about silence.

12:12 – 16:47 Roger talks about his experience at work when “fully resting in the moment.” Contentment and experience. Bringing presence to his work. Nature of presence.

16:47 – 18:30 Ajahn Chah and impermanence and how this teaching has changed Roger’s perception of the world.

18:30 – 22:03 Issues with drugs and avoidance of bad sensations and the seeking of good sensations. Addictive behavior as the actual seeking of inner peace. Addiction/recovery.

22:03 – 31:09 Compulsive thought. Meditation as an attempt to control the mind. Experience at a 12 day silent retreat. Transcendence of pain and the meaning given to the transcendence.

31:09 – 35:38 What is the point of such a 12 day silent retreat? Impermanence revisited. Gangaji discussed. Mooji discussed as a teacher Roger finds valuable and his favorite.

35:38 – 41:32 Family. Religious and spiritual life growing up. Talks with his skeptical grandfather at a Chinese restaurant. Education. Meditation in schools.

41:32 – 45:43 Roger gets into nonduality discussions with clients at work. Hypothetical cold call selling of nonduality. The possibility of a cult of awareness.

45:43 – 51:26 Roger’s reaction to the teaching that there’s nothing to teach and you don’t exist. Nothing Ever Happened, by Papaji. Diamond Sutra. Emptiness of emptiness. Negating existence. Impermanance and not knowing. Buddha. What is going on?

51:26 – 56:48 How Roger lives this knowing.

56:48 – 1:00:32 Grace as related to the flow of events in Roger’s life. Lex Gillan. Prayer. Letting go. Faith and neuroscience.

1:00:32 – 1:04:45 Consciousness is not the result of brain activity. Near death experiences. You are what you’re praying to. Mother Theresa. Truth-based way of thinking. Rochelle Arch-Hayostek mentioned. Negative emotions and fear still present.

1:04:45 – 1:07:15 Seeing the void or some knowing in the eyes of some people. More LSD-influenced perceptions. Experience of oneness through eye contact.

1:07:15 – 1:15:08 Using entheogens in controlled conditions. Seeing through your darkness while on psychoactive drugs. Nature of the darkness. Depression. Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, and the Tibetan Book of the Dead. Shamans. Icaros. Being forced out of you.

1:15:08 – 1:21:00 Having given up psychoactive chemicals. Roger asks Jerry about his perception, search, and what is seen. Nature of surrender.

1:21:00 – 1:28:03 Roger’s daughter. Long silence. Talking about the Nonduality Highlights. The pace of conversation slows way down. Talking about alternatives to caffeine.

1:28:03 – 1:32:58 Roger talks about things he sees happening in his life in the near future. The nature of the flow of his life these days. Contentment. His friends.

1:32:58 – 1:34:58 Roger’s opinion of nonduality on the internet. Suggestions for improving access to the Nonduality Highlights.

1:34:58 – 1:42:25 Time. “This.” Deep peace. Feeling like you need nothing. The urge to action. How do you know what to do next? Findings of neuroscience regarding action. Rafael Stonemen. Thinking.

1:42:25 – 1:48:35 No thought. Eating mushrooms and the experience of “no me.” “I don’t have a clue of what I’m doing at work, but it goes pretty well.” Flowness. Drug-induced seeing compared to sober seeing. Neem Karoli Baba and LSD.

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