Buddhism, Interview, Society, Spirituality

Episode 28: Music & Buddhism — Interview with Bill Protzmann


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Welcome Bill Protzmann to the show!

Bill has a wealth of experience with Buddhism, spanning back 30 years; along his spiritual path, he has come to view making music and specifically playing the piano, as embodying Buddhism and being in the moment.

There is a Zen proverb that says that the best way to enlightenment is through laughter… because you’re thinking about nothing! The second best way to enlightenment is through music… because you can’t guess the next note or how you will feel when in the middle of a composition.

Music has a way of being right there with us, and this feeds into the performer even when he’s practicing. We do mess up, we do feel fear, and we do feel all the emotions connected with our audience and what we’ve written — our “private world” is shattered when we play with and for others. Music connects ourselves to ourselves and each other to each other.

Though he has done a plethora of interviews, our episode must be unique, as Bill lets his personality flower as we connect as two musicians on the Buddhist path and even touch on a bit of quantum physics, issues in the United States, entrepreneuriship, and tips on music and podcasting.

As a beginner of piano at the age of three, Bill has come to be now involved in music care, which is a therapeutic approach to using music as a tool to aid in mental and physical wellbeing.

He runs both www.practicalheartskills.com and www.billprotzmann.com where you can find out more about music care in San Diego, California.

Buddhism, Philosophy, Society, Spirituality

Episode 27: Realisations Lately…


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In this episode, I go over briefly which insights I’ve had recently; they tumbled out and snowballed into one after another after another. In hopes that it provokes something in you — when you’re most yourself, most relaxed, or even during intense activities, you can catch the ways in which life hands you what you need to be shown without the cloudiness of the everyday mind.

I distinguish “insights” from “thoughts and feelings”, because “thoughts and feelings” come and go — even the sense of “self” thinking a thought or performing an action. There are often times when we are daydreaming about a beautiful image — or even a horrible situation — and we’re lost. Gone.

Insights are like flashes of things we haven’t seen or experienced before. Yet, they come and go also. They are gone just as the “thoughts and feelings” but have a positive impact upon future perceptions, judgments, and actions.

Listen above! May all beings be happy, free, and peaceful.

Buddhism, Interview, Philosophy, Society, Spirituality

Episode 26: Living Life as the Tao – Interview with Harry Sherwood

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Is there a way to be in harmony with life itself?

Harry Sherwood was a seeker for 10 years to reach the way in which life could truly unfold for him. Englightenment had been his grasp for quite some time — he studied all across the world with various yogis, monks, and shamans; practiced Tai Chi, Qi Gong, and yoga; witnessed dozens of ceremonies; and has been in touch with many states of consciousness… and they were all deeply valuable to him, as he was finally handed the “way of the Tao” in the end.

…Yet it is not the end of his human story!

Resistance and discomfort and disharmony can still be in one’s consciousness. Can we accept that, within the larger framework that life is handing us? Can we surrender to the divine and come back into balance? If there is tugging – can we simply let tugging be there?

Harry’s illuminating interview gives a grasp on what it means to be living in the Tao and exploring what subtle energies lie just beneath the surface waves of consciousness. These are subtle yet powerful indicators of where there is balance or imbalance. And it’s all okay.

I highly recommend consulting Harry, who runs www.consciously.org, as this beautiful being is clearly in congruence with an open gateway to the divine. As we are all spirits subject to the human condition, we can choose to harness the awareness of our sixth sense and to find our rhythm, our Tao, and our flow here on earth.

Also join Harry’s Master Soul group running from this summer, 2019 through 2020. The focus is on Dharana & Dhyana, The Sacred Tao, Chi, and Dzogchen. “We are purposefully going to keep the group small and intimate so we can make sure everyone involved is dedicated to the practice.

Enjoy the interview, and have a listen to the absolutely beautiful Tao Te Ching below:

For all beings everywhere:

May you be happy. May you be peaceful. May you be free from all suffering. Om, Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.

Society, Spirituality

Spirituality and Running: Mid-season Blog

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Running Through Europe & Beyond

Running is a bit like being pregnant; there are many stages, many phases, emotions rising, trees subsiding… sometimes you don’t want to, but you do it anyway.

We all have a human form and a spirit form. What that means is that the human part is concerned with ‘lower’ desires and habitual ways of interacting with the world — this can be anything from low self-esteem, to drinking too much, feeding anger, being grouchy at circumstances, and responses that are reactive rather than genuine. Then we have the human spirit: the one who breaks boundaries, tries new things and forms new responses, feels the life flowing through the body, interacts spontaneously in actions, and loses sense of time or self.

For the past four years, I have been regularly dedicating my spirit form to running. This is primarily to remain disciplined and to break boundaries and fear. There is a human pattern to it — when my focus is set on the pain in my body, giving into a drop in energy and getting lazy mid-run with motivation, or being self-conscious that “I’m a person running on the street” with other beings moving among me.

But, there’s also a spiritual element that keeps me going strong: moving my gaze up to focus just on the canopy of trees above my head in the park and noticing what kind of clouds are in the sky. Smiling at passerby to reach out from “my little world” and connect with them beyond boundaries. Remembering that it’s not serious but a fun little dance of consciousness, throwing my limbs forward like a rabbit or mouse or frog.

I am sharing this with you not to boast (what good would that do, anyway?!) but to show you the power of the human mind and soul.

Neither outer nor inner conditions have ever stopped these legs from getting their work done, though. Since 2015, between 5-10km most days of the year…

I’ve run…

  • The day after my dad’s death: dedicated to him.

  • On Christmas Day, New Years’ Eve, and New Years’ Day (after a few drinks…)

  • In the depths of winter, rain, hail, and 40° heat

  • When my emotions were the lowest of the low, dragging every step

  • In between working 5 days per week while making music albums, podcasting, and painting

  • Without food or water up to 10k

  • With my eyes closed

  • Attached to a race dog

  • Through forests, foreign cities, canals, on the side of the Himalayan highway (with Indian drivers), and getting lost in my own city

  • Singing “Hare Krishna” the whole way, chanting mantras, hearing podcasts, and thinking up podcasts or writing songs…

I’ve been afraid that my consciousness would leave my body, being so high… and afraid to sh*% myself in the middle of busy streets after way too much plane travel or recovering from illness — (it’s a real risk! “Runner’s trots”, you know.)

And all this time, this has been solo; to never run a race or compete with anyone else. I’ve been my own best companion.

What does this say about the human spirit? If a small, 5’2″ woman can get up every morning and make it happen, then what else is possible for human beings?

Here is a great podcast to get you into the flow of the possiblity of what we can achieve when spiritual energy is behind a practice. This man holds a 52-day race in New York City where the equivelant of 2 marathons per day are run by participants:

Enjoy, and comment with your ‘impossible feats’ from beyond!