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Buddhism & Taoism

Living in the NOW (Lama Surya Das)

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appointment Do you fight against the current and the dynamics of life and as a result find yourself exhausted and stressed out?  Learn by a Tibetan Master how to synchronize your life to the world around you and living in the now.   Resistance may not be futile, but relaxing into life sure makes it more pleasurable.  Surrender and dance with the good, the bad, and the ugly that life brings and the rewards will be more magic, clarity, and ease.

Show Summary

  • Link to Segment 1:Getting in Sync with the NOW – How do we live in the Holy Now? How does the Dali Lama stop from being a worry wart?  How did Lama Surya Das start a new beginning like a New Year and what were his personal resolutions? What gives him hope during hard times? Lama Surya Das and CJ discuss the trials and joys of raising teens.
  • Link to Segment 2: Making Peace with Violence -Begin at home – How can we help stop violence in society? Why is self-control as critical as gun control? Why can educating our children to develop self-control help societal violence?  What is Dali Lama’s call-to-action for the 21st century?  Lama Surya Das offers his look at society and his greatest hopes for how we can change for the good.

About our Guest:

  Lama Surya das

Lama Surya Das is one of the foremost Western Buddhist meditation teachers and scholars, one of the main interpreters of Tibetan Buddhism in the West, and a leading spokesperson for the emerging American Buddhism. The Dalai Lama affectionately calls him “The Western Lama.”

Surya has spent forty years studying Zen, vipassana, yoga, and Tibetan Buddhism with the great masters of Asia, including the Dalai Lama’s own teachers, and has twice completed the traditional three year meditation cloistered retreat at his teacher’s Tibetan monastery. He is an authorized lama and lineage holder in the Nyingmapa School of Tibetan Buddhism, and a close personal disciple of the leading grand lamas of that tradition. He is the founder of the Dzogchen Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and its branch centers around the country, including the retreat center Dzogchen Osel Ling outside Austin, Texas, where he conducts long training retreats and Advanced Dzogchen retreats. Over the years, Surya has brought many Tibetan lamas to this country to teach and start centers and retreats. As founder of the Western Buddhist Teachers Network with the Dalai Lama, he regularly helps organize its international Buddhist Teachers Conferences. He is also active in interfaith dialogue and charitable projects in the Third World. In recent years, Lama Surya has turned his efforts and focus towards youth and contemplative education initiatives, what he calls “True higher education and wisdom for life training.”

Lama Surya Das is a sought after speaker and lecturer, teaching and conducting meditation retreats and workshops around the world. He is a published author, translator, chant master (see Chants to Awaken the Buddhist Heart CD, with Stephen Halpern), and a regular blog contributor at The Huffington Post, as well as his own blog site where he shares his thoughts and answers questions from the public each week.

Surya Das has been featured in numerous publications and major media, including ABC, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Boston Herald, New York Post, Long Island Newsday, Long Island Business Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times, The Jewish Free Press, New Age Journal, Tricycle Magazine, Yoga Journal, The Oregonian, Science of Mind, and has been the subject of a seven minute magazine story on CNN. One segment of the ABC-TV sitcom Dharma & Greg was based on his life (“Leonard’s Return”). Surya has appeared on Politically Correct with Bill Maher, and twice on The Colbert Report.

More from CJ

During my first Fire it UP with CJ show on CBS ( airs on Jan 30th at 1-2PST (4-5EST)) I have the honor to interview Lama Surya Das. I’ll be talking to Lama Surya Das about starting the New Year 2013 and ways we can synchronize our energies and intentions during this very sacred time (the changing of the year), which are ideas covered in his book Buddha Standard Time. Lama Surya Das offered such incredible insights last year I interviewed him twice  (Check out: Interview 1 and Interview 2).  His book ,Buddha Standard Time, is my all time favorite of the hundreds of books I’ve read over the last two years and has had a lasting impact.  What I appreciate about Lama Surya Das is his gift of taking spiritual truths and translating them to practical action.  Here are my favorite tips from his book Buddha Standard Time and how I have adopted these in my full and busy life:

  • Life is a moving meditation: I’ve started trying to sneak in short 3 minute meditations throughout a given day.  Waiting in the grocery line, getting coffee, brushing my teeth, or sitting idle at a stop light have been transmuted from impatient inconveniences to meditative moments. While my daily meditation may not be  the traditional 20 minutes in a meditation chair, I get seven 3 minute meditations and more presence throughout my day.:)
  • Expand the hours in the day through meditation:  During the times in my life when I feel overwhelmed and stressed out my mind replays a time scarcity message over and over again, “I don’t have enough time in the day to get everything I need to get done. ”  Lama Surya Das suggests that stressed periods in our lives are the perfect time to meditate as it results in expanding time.  While counter intuitive, my higher Self recognized the wisdom in his words.   My personal experience validates that when I am able to wrestle control from my mind and meditate it results in a more resourceful, clear thinking, and calm version of me, and time expands as promised.  As a result, my clear presence allows me to manage my time more effectively.
  • Synchronize your life to the world around you:  I’ve always experienced and believed in change from the inside out.  However, I’ve learned to appreciate and get curious about the unseen impact on environmental changes on  my inner state of being.  Living from the outside in.  This year I have slowed down and become more present to nature and the changes at a micro level (seasonal changes) and a macro changes ( planetary orbits).  Grace, magic, and meaning have been my gift as I have danced with the flow of life versus fighting against it.

After my dad died (see Ted Talk) I became to realize the preciousness of life and my time on earth.  My interview this coming Wed@1Pm PT with Lama Surya Das digs into the chapters in his book “Getting in Sync”.  We’ll contemplate how to make this New Year precious and more effectively manage our time to achieve our personal goals.  Make sure to click on this slink on Wed  CBS Sky Radio this Wed at 1:30-2:00PST.   More on Lama Surya Das: Lama Surya Das website: