Dr. Ravi Ravindra is Professor Emeritus at Dalhousie University in Halifax (Canada) where he served for many years as a Professor in the departments of Comparative Religion, Philosophy, and of Physics.
His website which includes writings, schedule of appearance, interviews, and books is www.ravindra.ca.
Dr. Ravindra was a Member of the Institute of Advanced Study in Princeton, a Fellow of the Indian Institute of Advanced Study in Shimla, and the Founding Director of the Threshold Award for Integrative Knowledge. He was a member of the Board of Judges for the Templeton Prize for Progress in Religion. He is an Honorary Member of the Scientific and Medical Network and a Fellow of the Temenos Academy, England.
Ravi’s spiritual search has led him to the teachings of J. Krishnamurti, G. I. Gurdjieff, Zen, Yoga, and a deep immersion in the mystical teachings of the Indian and Christian classical traditions. He is the author of several books on religion, science, mysticism, and spirituality.
00:00 – 04:00 Introduction to Dr. Ravi Ravindra.
04:00 – 08:51 What cuts through the distractions of religion in order to get the true teaching. The need to take oneself seriously. Awareness that there is something subtler than the mind.
08:51 – 11:31 Traditional texts mentioned and the common message in all of them. Stilling the mind rather than filling the mind is needed.
11:31 – 16:49 Dr. Ravindra’s view on nonduality as modern Western spiritual culture and its mergence with science. The assumption of science is that the mind can figure out the deepest questions. Yet the sages insist the mind has to be quiet; consciousness is subtler than the mind. Spirituality is not a branch of physics.
16:49 – 21:30 Dr. Ravindra elaborates on where his uneasiness comes from regarding science and nondual knowing or seeing. Kant’s conclusion that knowledge through the mind can never be purely objective. Nondual perception or spiritual knowledge has the goal of being purely objective so that the subject is out of the way; this is freedom not for, but from oneself. The sages reveal that until “I” am out of the way I cannot come to the experience of the nondual.
21:30 – 27:35 What scientists say is not the same was what science says. Science explains reality in terms of matter and motion, space and time. This requires an explanation of consciousness in terms of unconsciousness. Still, the scientist himself or herself could be interested in the primary nature of consciousness, that interest is just not included in their scientific papers.
27:35 – 33:16 Speaking and relating from presence, especially in psychotherapy, however this is not associated with rigorous science. Limitations of science and its harmful impact. Compasssion for others must be included as part of a nondual view of the world. “You have eyes but you do not see,” Christ said.
33:16 – 36:52 The nature of the topics Dr. Ravindra speaks about. The message and the talk may be repeated but the talk comes from presence so there is a freshness to it. Ravi’s friendship with J. Krishnamurti. Ravi was more interested in JK’s presence even though JK’s words were often predictable. Presence is transformative, while words are reminders that can re-connect us with a nondual experience. Presence is the connecting energy.
36:52 – 39:58 Dr. Ravindra speaks about remarkable sages he has met. Presence itself has many levels. The meaning of levels can be forgotten when one gets too immersed in nonduality. There is oneness but also the uniqueness of everybody. Things “standing out shining,” as described by Christopher Alexander.
39:58 – 41:48 Jerry meeting J. Krishnamurti and the sense that Krishnamurti saw Jerry “standing out shining,” implying that that was how he saw everyone or everything. Ravi speaks about how some sages do the alternative and become invisible. Conclusion.