PLEASE NOTE: If clicking on the MP3 link in the following page does not result in continuous playing through your media player, Right-Click (on PCs) or Control+Click (on Macs) to download the MP3 file to your desktop and then play from there.
What Is Spiritual Freedom?
Rob Schmidt, Ph.D., and Stuart Goodnick, Mystical Positivist podcast hosts
Original Date: Thursday, September 13th, 2018
To value, admire, and revere freedom is the price of admission to American identity. Yet that price implies little or no commitment to ask ourselves what we mean by “freedom”. Is freedom a simple matter: the right to get to do what we want, perhaps unhappily balanced by considerations of freedom for others? What about the many species of freedom: freedom of expression, religious freedom, economic freedom, political freedom, social freedoms like the freedom to marry? While the evening’s discussion may touch on these questions and others, we will focus upon what “spiritual freedom” might mean. More importantly, we will consider what an examination of spiritual freedom can accomplish in the experience of our lives in the world. For example, how meaningful is it to imagine freedom in the realm of spirit that is somehow disengaged from the experience of living in and as a human body? Is it part of the mind’s delusion for people to manifest a version of spiritual freedom that is somehow unrelated to the embodied realities that we live out day by day? If so, how might we remedy that? Is spiritual freedom balanced by a corresponding responsibility to pay attention to both our interior and exterior lives? The commitment underlying this discussion is to contemplate serious questions, leavened at times by humor that does not take serious questions too seriously.
Rob Schmidt, Ph.D., and Stuart Goodnick help operate Many Rivers Books & Tea, and its parent organization Tayu Meditation Center. They studied for many years with Tayu founder Robert Daniel Ennis. They are also co-hosts of The Mystical Positivist Radio Show/Podcast, where they discuss spiritual, religious, and philosophical topics with authors, spiritual practitioners and teachers from many spiritual traditions.