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Marisa Radha Weppner and Avi Gordon discuss accepting every moment, the path of bhakti yoga (love/devotion), and how “we’re all going to graduate”.

Mother, teacher, author, DJ, community organizer, life coach, podcaster, entrepreneur. Radha has taught yoga and meditation since 2002. Radha uses her graduate degree in transpersonal psychology and life coaching to bring a real-world mix of eastern and western spirituality and psychology to her teachings of self-empowerment and transformation. She is the co-director and producer of Yogafort for Treefort Music Festival. She is also a Nosara Yoga Institute Master Yoga Educator. She specializes in direct experience teachings of Yoga Psychology, Yoga History + Philosophy, Yin Yoga, Yoga Nidra, Meditation and Self-Awakening Yoga.

Quotes from the Interview:

* our yoga practices…I often describe that to my students as like brushing your teeth. We brush our teeth every morning and night, why would we not move our body and clear our our energy throughout the day?

* It helps me to remember that we’re all gonna graduate – we’re all gonna get there in our own time – that we can’t ever fall out of it, [out of] love or God.

* That’s a sweeter feeling…that even when you’re having an argument with your beloved and you’re losing you can feel like ‘Oh, this is God too’.

* It’s not your birthday every day. at some moments you want others to rise and shine.



Marisa Radha Weppner 0:00
Wow, there's a lot more going on. Beyond material reality. And what I have been taught

Avi 0:06
one practice that I've been using is my allegiance to silence.

Marisa Radha Weppner 0:17
Often times, we'll get done with something that we're so happy we made it through and we're just like,

Unknown Speaker 0:23
yeah, no big deal.

Marisa Radha Weppner 0:24
I do that all the time.

Avi 0:26
I don't really want to get into any of that so much. Hello, and welcome. So glad you're here. So happy to be joined today by Marisa Radha wepner. And a little bit about Raja. She's a mother, teacher, author, DJ, community organizer, life coach podcaster and an entrepreneur. Raja has taught yoga meditation since 2002. She has used her graduate degree in transpersonal, psychology and life coaching to bring a real world mix of Eastern and Western spirituality and psychology, teachings of self empowerment, and transformation. She's the CO director and producer of yoga forte for tree fort Music Festival. She is also an Asara yoga Institute master yoga educator. She specializes in direct experience, teachings of yoga, psychology, yoga history and philosophy. yin yoga, yoga, nidra, meditation, and self awakening yoga. Wow. So much there. Raja, thanks for taking the time to be with us today.

Marisa Radha Weppner 1:45
My pleasure, my pleasure. Thank you for the invitation.

Avi 1:51
I'd like to start by asking you this question. What matters to you? Well, the

Marisa Radha Weppner 1:59
first thing that comes to mind hearts is God, I would say is a central in that kind of colors, everything else. And when I say God, I mean, the feeling of presence and connection and Divinity within myself, and then seeing that reflected out in the world. I guess it matters to me because I wants to feel alive and connected to it internally, again, so that it's also my human material experience.

Avi 2:44
So there's, there's a part of you that wants to feel connected to this divine force is that is that the way that you would say it,

Marisa Radha Weppner 2:55
I want to be aware that it's there. And I feel like in material reality, we often forget, or it gets clouded. And so it matters to me to try to do to try to create the ground of being in which you can be felt. And then that's a constant practice.

Avi 3:21
I love that actually, I've had a few moments recently, where the message has come very strongly, that celebration is appropriate. Like this experience that we're having is so outstanding, in so many ways that celebrating what it is, feels like a very appropriate reaction. Do you have that at all in is that maybe a little bit of what you're talking? Oh,

Marisa Radha Weppner 3:51
yeah, totally. You can celebrate it because you recognize that it's there. And you're in it. And I think you're absolutely right. And I'm I'm doing now also this training through somatic experiencing, which is like a somatic psychology, experience therapy. And they were talking about how when even you do something wonderful, right? Like you they showed a video of like a guy skiing down this crazy mountain side. And then the cliff came and then he had a parachute who's like pair a pair of skiing or whatever. And they get done and they lands and everything works out great. And they're like, Yeah, we did. This is amazing. There was like that moment. And then the teacher of the course was like often times we'll get done with something that we're so happy we made it through and we're just like, yeah, no big deal.

Unknown Speaker 4:51
I do that all the time.

Marisa Radha Weppner 4:54
And we kind of there's like an energy of like, downplay instead of like, Yes. How wonderful And I think we do kind of dampen ourselves and just being like,

Unknown Speaker 5:04
yeah, we made it.

Marisa Radha Weppner 5:07
Like a cheer. You know, like when you do the touchdown and they celebrate that's part of like the human energetic expression that we have learns to quiet. Yeah. Unconditional, humble. Like, like, again, like, oh, no big deal. Like, yeah,

Unknown Speaker 5:25
I did that.

Avi 5:27
Right? There's something about our culture of the social influence, that that causes us to quiet that maybe the inner desire to celebrate. Mm hmm. Hmm. Yeah. It's

Marisa Radha Weppner 5:43
it's like, you know, a false humility or a like, the the teaching of like, well, you're not important, and you're not special, and you don't matter. Don't make any noise. Don't pull any attention towards yourself, just keep on going. So then even when we have those ecstatic moments, we let them go by without the full burst.

Avi 6:09
Yeah, it makes me think of wholeness. Right. And like, our path towards wholeness, I can say for myself, like, I have a desire to continue to move in that direction of wholeness. So if I'm feeling whole, then I don't really need to doubt my, my impulses, right? Because if I'm wholly, I'm totally just confident, or it's not even really confident, it's just sure that this is the way that I am. So However, I'm going to operate in a way is appropriate, because I'm whole and this is just how I was created. And this is how I'm here. Yeah, do you feel that at all that that moving in the direction of wholeness then maybe get allows us to express ourselves more freely?

Marisa Radha Weppner 6:58
I think that it does. And we certainly want to be accepted more for our authentic self or even like, not accepted for our authentic self then accepted for a self that's not authentic to who we are, like, why would I rather be accepted for a false self than my authentic self? But I think in like regards to, let's say, just celebration, again, I think we culturally cue to, like, I'm going to pretend like this isn't a big deal for me, because I think you're gonna say it's not a big deal for you. Like, do you have those people in your life that are like, I don't celebrate anniversaries? Or I don't like holidays? or?

Avi 7:43
Yeah, of course. I mean, I do it myself. Sometimes, too, I would say.

Unknown Speaker 7:48

Avi 7:54
Yeah, I think it depends on what the subject is. Like, I don't know. If If even celebrating like myself, feels like the most important thing to me. Like, that's fine. That's okay. But more like celebrating, the experiences we're having and the stuff that we get to do that lights me up. Mm hmm.

Marisa Radha Weppner 8:17
But there's some resistance around celebrating yourself. Definitely. Yeah. Okay. Well, that's an interesting thing to dig into, you know, if you wanted. For me personally, like, I My birthday is at the end of February. It's February 27. So February 1 happens. And I'm like, it's my birthday month. And all month long, I use it as an excuse to just do the things that I would want to do anyways.

Avi 8:50
Yeah, I love that you say that, actually. So it seems that there's two there's kind of two viewpoints here. Like one is totally being focused on the self and embracing this being that I am. And the other one wants kind of me to get over myself and not to really focus much on that and want wants me more to just not be so concerned with what and who I am more concerned with, like, what what I'm going to do and what I can do. Yeah, and other people what

Marisa Radha Weppner 9:26
yeah, I think maybe for me, the path would be not either or, because you began by saying isn't life amazing and beautiful and what a miracle it is. And that includes you and a human body and your skin suit and your persona and your personality in your life. That includes you. Includes that your soul however you want to define it has this vehicle for the sensory experience to bring the merging of spirit into matter and to know it you're included.

Avi 10:02
Yeah. Yeah, I guess what I'm saying is like, I love that, that I'm included. And I feel that, right. And what I think is cool is just that I'm this being that gets to move about and do all these different things that I really want to celebrate. But like the persona of who I am, especially, I think, like the differences in comparison maybe with other people, and like taking up space, right, because we live in community with each other. And so I'm always mindful of how much space Am I taking up and allowing other people have that space to? So that, yeah, you know, navigate Yeah,

Marisa Radha Weppner 10:42
totally, because it's not your birthday month, every month, it's not your birthday every day. And, you know, it's in some moments, you want others to rise and shine, and you don't want to feel like the like, the like energy suck in the room, or the like, you know, the boisterous like, look at me kind of person. So it's a balancing act. You know, and I think maybe you can thread that needle by celebrating others too. Yeah.

Avi 11:16
Yeah, like, I want to celebrate others, I want to celebrate all of us in the experiences that we're having. I just, I don't want to fall into seems like it's a trap of, like, ranking better and worse. And they kind of seem to rub up against each other a little bit there.

Marisa Radha Weppner 11:37
Whereas the ranking the ranking from person to person or life experience to life experience.

Avi 11:44
Hmm. I like that question. When you say life experience, like ranking how good our experiences are compared to one another?

Marisa Radha Weppner 11:55
Yeah, yeah. Or like this moments better? Because it is a celebration, and this moments less because it is, you know, making the bed?

Avi 12:10
Yeah, like, I don't really want to get into any of that so much. Because then then it's always chasing right. That's why we could go to,

Unknown Speaker 12:23
I would,

Marisa Radha Weppner 12:24
I would kind of disagree, I would say that some moments, moment calls for celebration, and some moments call for just like tranquility, and some moments on call for like feeling suffering, and some moments call for taking care of your bodily needs. And so you're just what is this moment? What's the aspect of this moment?

Avi 12:50
I love that. And I'm totally, I'm totally with you. I think, obviously, that's, that's appropriate. We feel that, like, our intuition tells us what's appropriate, moment to moment. My point was, like, I don't want to be too attached to the moments that like maybe I really like are or have less suffering or less challenging, right? And I guess when I say celebration a little bit, isn't it? Like who around all the time? It's more of a on a wonder, which would encompass all the varying qualities of experiences?

Marisa Radha Weppner 13:25
Yeah, so that's like a sweeter essence. That's a sweeter feeling that even when you're having an argument with your beloved, and you're losing, you can feel like this God too.

Avi 13:44
Right? Yes. Yeah. And actually, that makes me think of a question I'd like to ask you in regard to patients. When, when you're having these moments that that are maybe more challenging. You feel like you're you're losing an argument or things are just not working out the way that you maybe wanted them to. How do you how do you navigate being being in that place? And is patience, a way that that you can do that just like kind of waiting for maybe the heart moment to pass?

Marisa Radha Weppner 14:18
Yeah, I feel like because of my spiritual practices, and my, the times that I've touched into the truth of my being that is God, and I know that that doesn't change. Even in the these moments like just this past Saturday, a week ago, I got so upset. At my daughter, she's 17 and one of her chores is to mow the lawn. And all week long it was mow the lawn. I'll do it tomorrow morning. I'll do it tomorrow. Moodle. I'll do it tomorrow. And Saturday night I was having friends come over and I wanted the grass to be mowed because I didn't want to be embarrassed by high grass. And she kept telling me she was going to do it. And so Friday she's like, I'll do it Saturday Mom, I promise and like, Okay, what

Unknown Speaker 15:06
do you have to

Marisa Radha Weppner 15:08
Saturday comes, she's like a comb over it for like, Okay. And like three o'clock, it's I can tell it's gonna rain. I'm like, can you come over earlier, she doesn't message me. Then she gets back to me. She's like, oh, sorry, took a nap. And now it's raining, I'll come over tomorrow. And that's saying, like, oh, come over Sunday. And I was so pissed. I was so mad, I was so mad. And I just had to allow myself to be in it. Like, I just sat on the couch and just felt like I was at like a 10 of 10. Right. And it's just pissed, so mad, and I could feel like, these inner urges to, you know, this isn't gonna make me sound very good. It's just like, like, like, I had said to her, like, forget about it, I'll do it myself, kind of got to that. And then I left it. But then I wanted to go back and be like, and this and this, and this, and I could feel those things rising. Me, but not doing any of those things. Because I don't because I love her. And she's my daughter. And she's 17 and I forgive her. And I'm also really upset feeling like, you know, you know, dealing with teenagers, man can be just so hard. Anyways, so in those moments, I was so mad, and just let myself be in. It's not causing any extra damage. I was by myself, so I wasn't like, you know, more upsets and things can escalate, and even cried, I was just like, like, just like, pissed, broken. And then you're in it, and those waves pass, you know, and then you come out of it slowly. And then the next day is like, wow, I was so mad yesterday. Look at that. And then the next day, I was looking at some astrology in the astrologer was saying how, you know, things are lined up so that the sun is square this and that so that you're feeling things are amplified, and so often to eyes kind of like to zoom out and not take it so personal. It's like what's going on globally, that maybe it's like a larger field of pain that I'm tapping into, that's being expressed in this moment, like, I'm so mad at my daughter, or what's going on astrologically that this is just like the wave of the field that's coming through. And this is how it's playing out in my life. And so then I also am able to, in a way, like, deep personalize it. And then I'm out of it.

Unknown Speaker 17:40
Is that helpful?

Avi 17:43
I think so. Yeah. And thanks for sharing a personal example. I can, I can tell them that that's still raw a little bit. That's great. Because it really

Unknown Speaker 17:55
makes me think of Oh, man, yeah,

Avi 17:56
this idea that, that I want to run by you and is like, our relationship with time and our own choices. Okay, so. And what made me think of it is when you said like, I didn't only want to text her that one line about Okay, I'll do it myself. I wanted to say so many more things, right? It's like, I felt myself in that moment with you. And like, the decision to like, do I say this and this and that? Do I not say anything? Like, the possibilities are endless, right. And, and so what has been like one of my, my just practices that I hold the most dear is faith that whatever I decide, is going to be the right thing. And I forget that a lot. But when I remember and, and I believe it, because I do believe it. No matter Yeah, that's,

Marisa Radha Weppner 18:58
that's beautiful, that's beautiful, to have that kind of trust. And I also feel like for myself, like in that moment when I was so mad when we get triggered, you know, we're often reverting to like a, like a more childlike part of ourselves. Right? And so it's like the childlike part of me who wants to throw a fit or be mad or angry. And I have to recognize that that I have a choice there where I could like lean into that and again, be more immature for lack of a better word or just like feel all the heats and the anger and the urges without acting on it. And so there's a little bit of like topless, you know, like a little bit of willpower, but I'm enacting

Unknown Speaker 19:52
in order

Marisa Radha Weppner 19:55
because I know better part of me knows Better.

Avi 20:01
Right? And my my question a little bit is, is the part of you that knows even better than that? A part of you that says, I'm allowing you to either, you know, revert back to that childlike self. That's okay, too. And I'm allowing you to also enter the posse and handle it maybe differently than I ever have before. I'm allowing either of those options and all options to be okay. Mm hmm. And my question, I think, Yeah, go ahead. What what happens, then, when I give myself that allowance, like that sense of, of lightness, then what is the result of that perspective? Well, it

Marisa Radha Weppner 20:50
helps me to remember that we're all going to graduate. Like, we're all going to get there in our own time, that we can't ever fall out of it, which is love or God, like, that's the base of everything. And it can get close to the edge. Krishna and I were just talking about this, it can be like 4951 51 will always be love. And so it allows me to have more compassion, I guess. And surrender and trust. Mm hmm. Because I think as a human, especially within our modern culture, there's a very, very, very strong urge and desire to get it right. To accomplish a lot, to not make mistakes, to win. And so then, in this framework that you're speaking of, it feels like there's more time. Like, I don't have to get it right now. For whatever right is.

Avi 22:03
I think that's, that's right. That's why Yeah, I said, it's like a relationship with with time and like a trust in the unfolding. And that's going back to what we're talking about, like with our persona, right? And, and kind of that trap of getting so immersed in, like, who I am, and how valuable I am. Because when I go to that place, like I worry, like, what does it say about me if I get angry? You know, like, what does that mean about me, I'm not as developed as maybe I was telling myself that I was.

Marisa Radha Weppner 22:38
It means that you have human emotions. I don't feel like I'm spiritual path, your emotions go away, I think how we deal with them and how we feel them gets better, you know, and they, and they almost become in a way more childlike. Like, if you think of a child, they cry, and they cry, and then 10 seconds later, they're laughing. And they're beyond the thing that they were crying about. Like they don't hold on to stuff. Children don't hold grudges, most typically, it's like moment to moment, emotional expression. And we can get back to that, where it's like, this is the emotion that's arising. And then the next one, and then the next one. Yeah, observing in Yeah, observing and to be, let's say, spiritual or evolved, or whatever, I think includes all of the human experience it like your spiritual practices just lets you feel more authentically and know what's truly yours. what's truly related to the present moment, because often when we get triggered, it's, we're everything around us is fine and perfectly safe. But inside, we don't feel safe, for example. And so then you're able to like inner resource of like, okay, I've just gotten pulled out of the moment, and I'm feeling hyper vigilance, or I noticed myself shutting down, I can now I'm aware that these things are even happening to me. What do I need? How can I help myself through this? Maybe it's going on a walk, maybe it's drinking a glass of water, maybe it's sitting by myself quietly for a moment, taking some breaths, maybe it's saying my mantra, maybe it's doing some yoga, but all I know, is that I'm not in my normal relaxed awareness states. Something is ping pong to me.

Unknown Speaker 24:40
So that's,

Marisa Radha Weppner 24:42
that's the thing that I guess that I would look at not that I don't have emotions or get angry, but how do I how do they get expressed and how do I deal with them? Or how do I share them?

Avi 24:55
One thing that you said that I really liked was, you know, what do I need? Like right now. So I'm curious if you've played at all with kind of the relationship with yourself and maybe viewing yourself in the third person. Right? So like, this idea that I'm obviously if keeper, you're Rada safe keeper. So because your run is safe keeper creates this kind of distance. And now you're viewing yourself and saying, okay, like, what does she need? And what is the effect of that that distance?

Unknown Speaker 25:30
Mm hmm.

Marisa Radha Weppner 25:31
Yeah, well, I, I have a human body that I need to care for. And I have had to learn even as an adult simple things like you need to eat right now. This is your window to feed your body instead of like, not, you know, or over looking this signals of hunger are the signals of thirst, like recognizing that within myself, when I feel like an urge that I need something I'll cut sometimes stop. And it's like, oh, what's water, I'm just thirsty. And I have to recognize that and make myself a glass of water, and then drink something. And so it's almost like 100. Now. It's kind of like that. And so my body, it's like a car, you know, it's a vehicle. And I want to take care of it. And the more that I take care of it, you know, like our yoga practices, right? Like I often describe that to my students is like, brushing your teeth. We brush your teeth every morning and night. Like why we would not move our body and clear out our energy throughout the day.

Yeah, cuz when we don't we start to feel dense and crusty and depleted. And then we're like, I don't know why I feel so crappy. I don't want I'm just angry or irritable. You know, Vince, it might just be any downward dog or forward fault.

Avi 27:06
Right? I think this like looking at ourselves in terms of what do we need? I feel like we can be a lot more successful than because we're not like in it. And again, like saying, what does this mean about myself that I'm in this bad place? It's, it's more of like solution oriented. What do I need?

Marisa Radha Weppner 27:24
Yeah. Yeah, I don't need to psychoanalyze it. I, when I've gotten when I when I like, let's say use anger, for example, again, when I'm angry, like my partner, maybe, let's say, and then it's like, why I'm so mad at you for all these reasons. And then I if if I go back, it's like, because of this in my childhood. And that, that, that, that that that that's all fine. But it also kind of feels just like a mental spiral. Right? Instead of just the fact of like, I feel angry right now. I'm feeling it in my body. I'm allowing myself to feel it's in the heat and the tightness in my body. And then I'm there with it. And then I've once not that I want to push it away, but I kind of want to clear it. And it is a very body experience for me. Versus mental understanding. Because I want to I want to get the feeling in my body back to like light and neutral.

Unknown Speaker 28:29
If that makes sense.

Avi 28:31
100% I don't think the body can be overstated, really like the importance of it. That that what our bodies don't feel good, or thoughts aren't going to be as good either. And so often, like that can be a really great solution. What is what does my body need right now? And then, right exercise, it's like every single time, if you exercise, most likely afterwards, any kind of exercise, you're going to feel better. Yeah, or a hug. or playing with your dog. Yeah. You mentioned before, I don't remember the exact words but something about tuning into your, like, the truth of your God nature. Like that is you. And I wanted to ask was, was there like a process of coming to that place? Like believing that like the nature of what I am, is also God? Was there some some time when you were like, Well, no, I can't call myself that.

Marisa Radha Weppner 29:35
God You mean, I can't call myself God? Yeah. Which I don't, but I am in at the same time. And is your question like, when did I first feel that within myself?

Avi 29:50
Yeah. And just kind of the process of coming to the place where you're at now or you can kind of refer to the essence of what you are to be a part of a That was there a process of coming to this?

Marisa Radha Weppner 30:02
Yes, I would say, you know, my first psychedelic experience when I was 15

Unknown Speaker 30:11
gave me the the,

Marisa Radha Weppner 30:15
the gave me the experience that wow, there's a lot more going on, beyond material reality, and what I have been taught in like a Roman Catholic upbringing, up to this points. And then I then started my quest to understand what is the nature of reality? And what does it mean to be human because now I don't understand anymore because of what I experienced in a psychedelic journey. And then that was like 1995, there were I had no mentors, and no teachers and notebooks and no guidance, and no way to integrate. And integration wasn't even a word that we used, I just felt really lost and broken, and confused and curious. And so I was on my own journey to, again to integrate, but I didn't have that word, and to understand. And then five years later, to be five years to find yoga. And I found yoga, through that desire to understand the nature of myself and reality. And it was my yoga practice that gave me then it was like the doorway opens one into my body and into myself, where I'd never been embodied, like I wasn't athletic, or sporty, or had touched my toes, or anything like that, and was quite dissociated from the needs of my body even. So then yoga, did many things like it helped me to feel my body, to love my body to be in my body. And then I was also witnessing, through my practice, how my state of being was changing, just through doing poses, which I thought was really curious, like, all I'm doing is stretching my body, but I can see myself becoming calmer, and choosing better habits. And I'm not trying to be calmer or trying to choose better habits. But that's I'm noticing that happening while I'm beginning this practice. So that was really inviting and curious to me, and exciting and hopeful. And then, I would say through more psychedelic journeys that were more held and grounded, than when you have those lived experiences of them. And then transcendental experiences, like you can have an kirtan chanting or pranayama, you know, where you kind of break through the veil. And when you experience yourself as all that is, you know, it's it's like a lived experience of what all the books talk about, and all the scriptures talk about. So then you're like, Oh, I just, now I know that that's true. When they when I say we're all one, I can say it, but then when I experienced that, that's a layer of wisdom versus knowledge, of just knowing intellectually, and I think you only have to experience that once to know that that's true.

Avi 33:20
I love I love this image of breaking through the veil, whatever it is that we're breaking through. And the word freedom comes to me from that lived experience that you're talking about, like just to feel free like, wow, like, yeah. expansive and ecstatic, and blissful. Yeah. And that's what I say a little bit. I think when I talk about, like, kind of getting over myself in that kind of a way. Because I think like, that's what's happening. Like, that's the part that's just like breaking away and opening up into this freedom, where it's just, I'm, I'm so tired of being concerned with what Avi is, you know, he is on that on that one level.

Marisa Radha Weppner 34:11
Yeah. And to get there, you have to surrender. Like I'm thinking of these moments I've had in Kyrgyzstan in chanting practices, where, you know, I don't know about you and your circumstances, but for me, like I'm the one that loves carrots on and my friends or my partners could kind of care less like they haven't tapped into the way that I have. So I have to one make a decision where if a cure ton is happening, I'm gonna go and sit down and chance and you might not come with me. So I'm doing it on the solo experience, although I might be surrounded by others. And then I'm tuning into the words and the sounds and the vibration, and I have to give all of my attention to it. Everything like all the other outer distractions of like, should it what are they doing over there, the FOMO? Here, I'm thirsty, or I need to get up or this is boring, or when am I going to get there? What's the thing, all of that has to fade away into me just listening and fully absorbing, and it's, and then the me that's even trying to do it, then that meat disappears. And then those are those God moments. So it's like when I can take all of me and focus all of me, and then all of me goes away.

Unknown Speaker 35:38
That's amazing.

Marisa Radha Weppner 35:40
That's the best. And inquiry for me too, is like, are these moments actually happening a lot more than, than we tend to realize? I think they happen. I was just wrote about this this morning, I did dream about this last night, I had a dream last night that I was teaching on the nature of infinity. And what wasn't infinity. And in the dream, it was an every moment that you're fully immersed in the moment is an infinite moment. And an infinity, it's a moment of all pervading oneness, never ending, which also is the definition of God. So in any moment that you're fully present, whether internal or external, it's in infinity. And in those moments counter to that, like when I'm in the moment, and I'm scrolling on my phone, or I'm talking to you, but I'm also checking in email, or like when in a moment where there's multiple things happening. That's a finite moments that I'm like, out of God, alignments, I'm a little I'm just scattered, my energy is more dispersed. But in any moment that I choose to be fully present, I'm in it, just like in those chant moments. I feel like that's what it's all about.

Avi 37:06
And I think it can be practiced to, that's for my experience, like, the more I have that single pointed focus of just being in the moment, resting, resting in the flow of the unfolding, the more that I do that and go to that place, the easier it is to go.

Marisa Radha Weppner 37:28
The easier it is to go. And I don't know about you, but in my meditation practice, the thing that pulls me out of it most is my mind's going into the future of I want to do this next, or I should do this next, I need to plan this next, or what if I also did this, and I'm sitting there trying to meditate, my mind. It's so silly. Like it even like makes up stories, while I'm trying to meditate of like, in the future, how I could do this better and offer it with other people. It's like seeing like a class in the future or something like that. And I'm like, this is so ridiculous. Because just you're like meditate. Come on, come on, right back here. Just this. Just this, like the planning mind is so strong.

Avi 38:17
Yeah, it's it's so strong, I would say yeah, the survival mind. It wants to protect us. And that moment that you're talking about, of observing yourself, planning the future, when you're while I'm meditating, while you're reading, but this is what happens, right? This happens all over and over again and again. So my question is, you know, in that moment, are you able to come back? And what helps you to come back in that moment? How do you get back,

Marisa Radha Weppner 38:54
I have a new technique that I've been using, which is a common technique, and we've had described to us in many ways to many teachers is my make it really simple. So instead of getting into any kind of story, I can either recognize where my mind has gone to as a desire, or an aversion. If I'm planning about the future, it's usually a desire, right? Some kind of something I'm wanting, so I'll just say desire. And then I say just this,

Unknown Speaker 39:25
just this.

Unknown Speaker 39:29
That's what I do.

Marisa Radha Weppner 39:31
I'll catch it, give it that desire or aversion label, the aversion is the thoughts about what I don't want to have happen or what should what I wish didn't happen. And then the phrase just this. I love that. Just this right now. That's a ROM das teaching. He says that, just this not It just helps me I just feel myself get right here again. Yeah.

Avi 40:12
One practice that I've been using is my allegiance to silence. I say that I've continued, like falling in love with silence and that space. And I noticed that my mind will try to challenge that allegiance to no thoughts, so to speak, or no thought or, or silence. And it'll challenge it by trying to come up with like, the best, most important thoughts that it could come up, right. And that'll be happening during my meditation. Because like, this is such a valuable thought, like, you don't have to write it down, I have to remember it type of thing. And so my practice has been just cutting the thought, I don't even need to think about it anymore. Just like cut the thread of the thought, like immediately like chop, chop. That's it.

Marisa Radha Weppner 41:04
My mind is the same thing. I have a slightly different practice where I say to myself, because it'll be juicy and the answer and everything and I say, if this thought is really important, I'll remember I when I'm not meditating.

Avi 41:21
I let it go that I need a little bit of that faith. Because sometimes I feel like now, I won't remember it. Like it'll be so

Marisa Radha Weppner 41:28
no. No tell you stuff you tell yourself you well, because it wants you to feel how important it is. And that's the allure of it is the importance of it. So you just say if this is really that important, I'll remember it. And I'm not meditating.

Unknown Speaker 41:43
Okay? God,

Marisa Radha Weppner 41:45
I trust in that because it requires me to trust to. Because then you could say like, well, is that true? Will you really I'm like, Why just claimed it. So I'm going to trust and the trust and trusting.

Avi 42:00
I love that. Okay, I have one more question I want to ask you. And that is about love, and your relationship with love. Is that a practice for you? And is that something that you're noticing is, is changing all the time? Kind of just experiencing this sensation of being in love? Yeah,

Marisa Radha Weppner 42:23
I'm a bhakti. I'm a Bhakti Yogi. And that's the path of devotion and love and my loving relationship with the other with the beloved, whether it's Hanuman or Krishna or ROM or ROM das or Maharaj Ji or Parma Han Soo Nanda or Guadalupe or the earth or the cosmos, will my real life partner my children? Yes, because it's a feedback loop. That if we know God is love, and we wants to be with God, we were with God by being love. By offering that love by offering that devotion by offering my attention, my attention is my currency. And I give my attention to those things that I love. You know, like my partner, he knows, he, you know, he kind of loves it when I give him my attention, because it feels good. And just like, I want to receive attention from my beloved, and that feels good. I give my loving attention, and devotion and practices and energy and effort to God and its many forms. And when I do that, it fills me up. So it's like God is in me. When I'm loving, when I'm loving my relationship with God. It's the path of bhakti you get to be with God already. It's not like you're going to be with them at some other points. It's right now. And the more that I give my devotion and love, it kind of makes the portal grow bigger and bigger, until it's just all the time. It's all the time. Not all the time, like those angry moments, I guess. But most of the time. I live and breathe feeling like I'm in love with life and so grateful. so grateful, so grateful. And so grateful to be able to just have the time and the space to feel that and to have those practices. You know, so grateful that I can wake up in the morning and play the harmonium and chants and meditates and to Artie with my beings around me and you have this conversation with you and teach yoga and eat good food and have a home that I love. And I feel like I had this quote the other day too, that was like, if God made the whole entire universe and everything in it, of course, God can take care of me and my family. Like that's not some kind of big feats to be able to care for me, because God can do everything and is everything. And I just want to be, the more that I trust in that, the more that it just compounds. And it's true.

Unknown Speaker 45:41

Marisa Radha Weppner 45:43
yes, yeah, it's I'm leading a weekend on bhakti yoga next weekend, may 14, through the 16th. It's the first time I've ever led a whole training just on boxy. I used to just kind of spread it out with everything else, but it's my favorite. It's my favorite. And I want to share it more. So it's a little bit of an edge for me, because it makes it's new, it's new to teach it to others, because it's been really just something I do in my own life. But because it's been so profound for me and so impactful. I feel like it could be for others also. And I just want to share kind of open some gateways for my students of how to attune to that more in their own life and what that could look life. Like. My sense is that it will. I hope so. I love it. I love I love boxing.

Unknown Speaker 46:46
I love it. I love it.

Avi 46:51
I love what you said about attention being currency. never considered that before. I think that's really wonderful. That's, that's great. Yeah.

Unknown Speaker 47:02

Marisa Radha Weppner 47:03
there was a Hopi elder I was with a long time ago. And he was he said, in his all of his stories, he said, If God is everything, and God has everything, and God knows everything, God has all the omnis. What could you possibly give God if God already has everything? And the answer is your attention?

Avi 47:27
Hmm. I think so too. Like, that makes me think of gratitude. And like nature, or God, feel that they're the same thing in my mind. You know, like you said, it provides such abundance. And the only thing that I think if it had a request, if it did have a request, maybe it doesn't have any requests. But if it did have a request, it would just be to be thankful to just say, thank you. That's it. Yeah. Yep.

Marisa Radha Weppner 47:58
Pay attention to me Say thank you. Say thank you. And that's in the Bhakti devotional practices, it's just that, you know, you have your altar. And you maybe have candles or flowers or prisa, like offering food, and that's all of that. It's just a way to say thanks. So a way to say, thank you, I see you. We're in this together, I'm grateful. I'm grateful.

Avi 48:28
Well, rather, I'm grateful for this time and, and really value the, the essence of what you are your, your whole being. It's special. And I feel like you actually like lifted me up a bit today, to be honest with you like just noticing in myself, which is really cool. So I just was kind of like aware of that happening as we got going. So I want to voice that. So thanks.

Marisa Radha Weppner 48:52
Yeah, we'll be in conversation. We're fortunate for it. I heard a clip on like NPR last night, as I was driving home with like, when was the last time you were in a really enriching conversation with somebody? And I thought to myself, I think I get to do that when I'm doing podcasts. Thank goodness, thank goodness for podcasts. Because it's a part of what we do here. Same time.

Avi 49:15
You were you're saying about attention. That's I mean, that's why I love it too, because I think it's just an example of that single focus, like right now just right here is meditation.

Marisa Radha Weppner 49:27
Yep. Yep. So thank you for the invitation to be present with you. I've really enjoyed it.

Avi 49:33
Yeah. And I wanted to ask if people want to get in touch with you find out more about what you're doing. What's the best way for them to do that? Yeah.

Marisa Radha Weppner 49:41
I've got a website. Marisa Mar is a Radha ra th we're a calm and then I'm on Instagram. I like to post on there and that's my name Maria Serato wepner w e PP n

Unknown Speaker 49:58

Marisa Radha Weppner 50:00
Those are kind of my main platforms, I would say I guess I've got my podcast love service wisdom that you could tune into. And then I've got a meditation album that's on all the streaming platforms like Spotify and Apple Music, called guidance and it's some grounding and energy clearing meditations and a yoga nidra and a heart portal meditation and the track that's like an intro to meditation track. I'm on insight timer, also known I lead meditations on there this Friday. Today, I did one for Ganesha. And I'm going to do you want on Friday with the mahamantra and then I'll keep doing those. So if anybody is inside timer, those are all free too. Which is nice. You can find me there. Or just yeah, reach out. happy to share in any way. Amazing celebration. Thank you so much, Radha. We did it here.

Unknown Speaker 51:05
Thanks, Avi.

Avi 51:06
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