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Being an Ascetic Type in a Sensual World:
The Role of Renunciation on the Spiritual Path

Jim Wilson
Original Date: Thursday, October 9, 2014

Download MP3 Audio File Here (15.2 MB)

Lao Tzu, the Buddha, the great Jain Sage Mahavira, the Desert Fathers in early Christianity, modern sages as Thomas Merton and Ramana Maharshi, poets like Emily Dickinson and Han Shan, lived lives focused on renunciation. Today this way of life seems alien, a relic from a bygone era. In a world driven by consumerism and a sense of material entitlement, does the ascetic ideal have anything to offer?

Join former Buddhist Monk Jim Wilson for an open-ended discussion of renunciation and its possible applications in the modern world. Perhaps there is something for us to learn from those who have embodied the ascetic ideal even though we live an ordinary life with ordinary commitments. Perhaps the ascetic life can offer inspiration for our own spiritual journey.

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