In this episode, I’m joined by spiritual teacher Richard Lang. Richard was a student of Douglas Harding, author of “on having no head” and the founder of a contemplation method called The Headless Way. As Richard describes it, The Headless Way is a modern way of seeing our true nature, the limitless ’space’ we are looking out of. Richard has been practicing and sharing the Headless Way for over fifty years now, and has also written several books about it. His mission is to make seeing our true nature as widely available as possible.
In this interview, Richard Lang talks about his journey prior to encountering the headless way, how his desire for awakening evolved over time, What The Headless Way is and how it works, and how we can incorporate frequent moments of seeing our true nature in the middle of daily life, the relationship between love, compassion and the headless way, and more. He also conducts an experiment for the audience, in which he attempts to make us realize what our First-person experience is actually like.
00:00 – Episode introduction
01:38 -Richard’s journey prior to encountering The Headless Way
10:01 -How Richard’s desire for awakening evolved over time
13:41 – Is realizing your true nature something you can deepen and realize “better”?
17:39 – Does a practitioner need to validate their realization with someone else? What are the risks?
23:36 – Why do some people “get it” or realize their true nature, and some people don’t?
27:28 – Is there any point in practicing?
30:01 – “Who am I” and Stages in life: baby, adult, and seer.
42:06 – The functions and applications of The Headless Way in daily life
48:41 – Love and Compassion flowing naturally
52:47 – Using the senses in particular ways to access your deeper nature
57:19 – Live experiment for listeners to try
1:11:53 – Ways to get in touch with Richard, and other Headless Way practitioners
My name is Richard Lang and I have been involved with the Headless Way for over fifty years. When I was a teenager I was interested in finding out who I really was and by chance one day found myself in a workshop with Douglas Harding, author of On Having No Head. Douglas took me and the other participants through some of his experiments and we all saw our True Nature. Douglas extended a hand of friendship to anyone interested in the Headless Way, so I began visiting him and over the years made many friends who value this direct method of Awakening. One of the things I have learned is that it is very helpful to have friends with whom I can share this Awareness, or Seeing as we call it. I recommend connecting up with other Seers. The Seeing is infectious.
As well as practicing this Way, I was personally drawn to sharing it. So over the years, I have given many workshops. I also set up a charitable trust to help make available this modern method of seeing Who we really are. We offer many things on our website, on our YouTube channel, and publish practically all of Douglas Harding’s books. We also offer zoom meetings where people can get to know other Seers. Our ambition is to make Seeing as widely available as possible. This is why we are happy to be part of InnerCraft.
To learn and practice with Richard Lang check check his courses, and live events on Innercraft and his website:
- o support your practice we have also created the following resources:
- Video Course Library: https://www.inner-craft.com/video-courses/
- Live Events (Workshops, Q&As, Peer Meetups, etc.): https://www.inner-craft.com/live-training/
- Guided Meditation Library: https://www.inner-craft.com/guided-meditation/
- Podcast: https://www.inner-craft.com/podcast/
- Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1632152067129586
Music by DJ Taz Rashid:
Speaker 1 00:00:40 In this episode, I’m joined by a spiritual teacher. Richard Lang Richard was a student of Dules harden author of on having no head and the founder of the contemplation method called the headless way as Richard describes it. The headless way is a modern way of seeing our true nature. The limitless space we are looking out of Richard has been practicing and sharing the headless way for over 50 years now and has also written several books about it. His mission is to make seeing our true nature as widely available as possible. In this interview, Richard talks about his journey prior to encountering the headless way, how his desire for awakening evolve over time, what the headless way is and how it works, how we can incorporate frequent moments of seeing our true nature in the middle of daily life. The relationship between love, compassion and the headless way and more, he also conducts an experiment for the audience in which he attempts to make us realize what our first person experience is actually like now without further ado, Richard Lynn. Hello, Richard. Welcome to the Intergra podcast.
Speaker 2 00:02:01 Hello Andreas. Thank you for inviting me a pleasure to be here.
Speaker 1 00:02:04 Thank you so much for being here. I’ve already shared a little bit of your background with the audience, but as a way to start a con that conversation, we would like to hear a little bit about your journey prior to finding the headless way. I know that you had some interesting in spirituality already, or the self exploration journey would love to expand a little bit on that.
Speaker 2 00:02:30 Yes. Uh, I think, uh, it all began when I was about 11 years old and I was at boarding school in Yorkshire, in the north of England. And I listened to a sermon given by the headmaster and he told a story that was from the venerable bead, who was a historian and, uh, kind of Saint really in the north of England in about the 10th century or the ninth century, something like that. And the story was of a king in his big hall, around a fire with all his Lords and ladies and all of that, something like that. And it was a winter’s night. So in, through the winter, flew a bird, Sparrow flew around the big hall, I think, in the light and then flew out another window into the dark of the winter’s night. And it really caught my imagination and what I think the Venable bead was bringing everyone’s attention to was the, the briefness of life that, uh, it’s about as long as a Sparrow flying in the light, but that’s not what attracted me.
Speaker 2 00:03:47 My question was where did that Sparrow come from?
Speaker 2 00:04:46 And, uh, then when I was 17, I went on a Buddhist society, summer school in near London and, uh, went with my brother and I was just really interested in, I wanted to get enlightened, you know, I wanted to find out what my true self was and all of that. Uh, and, uh, I was very shy and confident. It was both. And I got quite confused at this meeting of Ernest Buddhist, uh, you know, Zen or Tibetan or Tara Vaden and a clue. And then one day someone said, uh, there’s a workshop with Douglas Harding. Why don’t you go to it? And I’d never heard of him. So I, I duly went along and Douglas did the experiments. He posed the question that you are not what you look like. And then he said, now we’re gonna test that in essence is what he said this 1970.
Speaker 2 00:05:42 And, uh, he got, he got us to look at the place we’re looking out of and, uh, indeed, uh, point, well, I’m not sure if we did the pointing experiment already at that time, but in essence, that was it look out. And, uh, you see the world look back to where others see your face and what do you see? And I looked, I thought, well, there’s nothing here. And that was like, looking out that window on that dark winter’s night into the mystery, looking back to myself who would’ve guessed that, that mystery, where the bird came from was nearer to me within my breathing
Speaker 2 00:06:43 So a few minutes, late months later, I went with my brother and my mother who, uh, was wondering what we got involved with down to Douglas’ house in Suffolk, and, uh, stayed the weekend. He had two houses, he was an architect and he designed a second house. And in the second house we had workshops and there must have been a dozen people or more there that weekend as there was most weekends when he went. And, uh, that was an occasion where I could ask all my doubts, raise my doubts and sort out my questions, you know, and, and get a bit more confident on this vision, which had already begun to affect me, you know? And the, a couple of things to say really is one that personally, I, I think I realized very soon that this was just an extraordinarily effective way of bringing people’s attention to their true nature by looking for your head.
Speaker 2 00:07:45 Uh, now, uh, when Douglas discovered this back in 1943, he, he didn’t just go round saying to everyone, I don’t have a head. He spent about 10 years working out how it made sense scientifically, psychologically philosophically. And I think people have to do that more or less people say, well, what about my nose? Or I can touch my head. Or what about the mirror or what happens when you die? Or how does it affect personal relationships? Well, you have to work all that out in your own way and everyone to their own, uh, degree of satisfaction, as much as you can. So that’s what I did in the following years. I read everything Douglas had written, I got to know him, I did workshops with him, but, uh, at the same time I had this feeling that this was just a very powerful, modern way of sharing this ancient truth.
Speaker 2 00:08:42 So I, uh, committed myself as much as you can at that age, to not only being aware of it, but to sharing it, to communicating it, which is what I’m doing now. And, uh, most people are probably not interested in actually sharing it in this, in that way. I think if you are aware of it, you’re sharing it. But the other thing I’ll just add in, uh, at this moment, uh, is a question that often people ask is, well, alright, I can notice, I cannot see my head. Uh, but, uh, and, and I get that, that is seeing my true nature, but how do I stay aware of it? And what I did was that I spent time with Douglas and other friends who were also aware of it, and it’s a social thing. It’s infectious. And, uh, being with you for this hour or hour and a half, whatever it is, is hanging out with someone and communicating about our true nature that keeps it on the front border for me. And, uh, I say to people these days, uh, you know, when you grow up, you, uh, learn that you’re a person, how do you get that going? You hang out with people who are telling you, you’re a person and you are, you are going for that. You see, well, how do you then incorporate integrate stabilize awareness of your true nature? Will you hang out with others who are also aware of it? It’s that simple?
Speaker 1 00:10:28 Thank you for sharing that. Uh, Richard, such an interesting journey. I have, I guess, a couple of questions about all of what you’ve shared, uh, at the beginning you shared that you had a desire for awakening when you were exploring in your earlier journey, all of these traditions. So I wonder how this desire have evolved. Uh, if you, yeah, well, I, I leave it later, uh, to start with,
Speaker 2 00:10:54 Well, I think that, uh, that story that my headmaster told me, uh, sparked that interest, but I think that it was, uh, a kind of familiar, uh, interest already. And I think it, it is really when you get down to it, you can’t explain it. And I think, uh, perhaps you can seem to explain it by saying, well, it’s the it’s who you really are. It’s the one wanting to know itself. And that comes out in, in, in your life or, you know, it might not, but it’s very mysterious why it should come out in my life and not in someone else’s. And I can’t explain that or understand that, but I think that when you wake up to who you really are, this wide open headless space that contains everything. And I look at you Andreas, and it’s face there and face here. I am you, I am space you.
Speaker 2 00:11:55 I am space for the world. My voice is coming out of nowhere. So waking up to what I am from my point of view, I understand for you, I’m Richard and, uh, on the screen, I’m Richard. That’s what I look like. But what I am for me is this mystery, this where the bird came from. And I think that that mystery and I speak for it really says, oh my God, I am. How did I do that? Uh, I, I, you know, I’d like to, uh, think about that a bit
Speaker 2 00:12:48 That’s pretty amazing.
Speaker 1 00:13:59 Yeah. That’s wonderful. Thanks for sharing that. Uh, and just to understand better, let’s say, uh, uh, understanding your true nature from the lenses of the headless way, which I guess is from any lenses really, right. There’s only, I mean, there’s only one true nature. Anyways, once you understand it, if there a journey towards understanding it better and depending it, or once you get it, you got it. And there’s nothing else to do.
Speaker 2 00:14:27 Well, it’s both, you see, it’s a paradox. And when you see your headless true nature, if I can use a headless wage jargon, you see, and you notice you’re looking out of your single eye and you notice when you’re driving, you are still in the scenery, moves through you, or you’re lying in bed at night with your eyes closed, and you’ve got no boundaries. The darkness is single and it’s all in you. And so on and so forth, you can’t get the awareness of the space any differently. It’s always the same, cuz that when you look at the place you’re looking out of, it has no face, no name, no nationality, no age, it’s, it never changes. And it’s the same for everyone. And, uh, so you can’t improve that. But what flows from that is your response and your experience and your interactions with people and that, uh, deepens and deepens in terms of your understanding and appreciation and living from who you really are.
Speaker 2 00:15:28 So it’s a par, it’s a two way, two thing, two way thing in this direction, the inward direction, it never changes. And we’re all the same. And you, there’s no hierarchy and you can’t get better or worse at it. And, but in the outward direction, we’re all different. And that’s the joy of the one being many. See, I’ll say something else about that. Um, people say, well, how can I do this? 24 7? You see, how can I be aware of my true nature? 24 7? I say, I have no idea because this is, it’s not in time. I, I say this space, I’m looking out of, let’s just take the last 20 minutes where I’ve been talking to you or whatever it is now, how much of that time have I been aware of the space? Well, I mean, I, I just can’t tell, I can’t measure it because it’s timeless and it is only now you see, I mean, if I say, well, I, I was aware when I first started talking with you that I was space for you.
Speaker 2 00:16:28 I said, well, can you be sure that that’s a memory? Isn’t it. You might be fooling yourself and seeing who you really are is, is not going by memory. It’s what am I now? And this is both the disadvantage and the advantage. The disadvantage is that you can’t stretch it out. You can’t guarantee you will now see it for the rest of your life. I’m sorry. There you go. You know, that’s the bad news. The good news is you could only see it now. And I mean right now, and when you look now, you see that you see it perfectly and it’s out of time. So that’s the good news cuz you, you you’ve got it now forever.
Speaker 1 00:17:06 Yeah. That’s, that’s very interesting. I can, I can’t, I guess quantify and remember when I am aware and when I’m, when I’m not, but I can catch myself not being aware or being too self self-aware. Who self, self aware. If, if that’s a thing,
Speaker 2 00:17:24 Well, you see, I’ll say what I say to that is that I have no doubts that you’re looking out the same space as I, in the sense it has no face, no name, no age. Uh, now that is your response to it. That’s your description of what it’s like to be you. And I say, who am I to argue with that? I welcome that different expression from the same space. You see? So great to get your response there.
Speaker 1 00:17:53 Thanks.
Speaker 2 00:17:54
Speaker 1 00:17:59 Mm-hmm
Speaker 2 00:18:01 Two voices. Yeah. Would, would you agree?
Speaker 2 00:18:59 See, I now I’m elaborating on a nonverbal experience. The single eye fades out all the way around into the great space. My voice comes out of silence. So I say that everyone gets it. So, you know, some people say, well Richard, how many people get it? And how many don’t I say they all get it
Speaker 2 00:20:00 So there’s a hierarchy and people spend years studying scriptures to try and understand them, you know, never quite, you know, can you be sure you’ve got it right? And uh, when speaking personally, I accept that everyone’s got it, but they understand it or value it differently from me. The pressure is off, uh, having to understand it in a certain way or having to convince anyone else cuz ridiculous. You know,
Speaker 1 00:20:47 Do you think, uh, there’s a risk in somebody maybe intellectually understanding this and explaining that to you from all of the books and lot of the great concepts he has and then by, well, anybody validating that view, maybe stagnating his progress to go beyond concepts.
Speaker 2 00:21:09 Well, I, uh, I’m sure there’s danger of me doing that, but personally I, I uh, don’t go that road down that road personally, I stay as close as I can to the experience. And when I’m talking with someone, I I’ve already mentioned the experience several times. Don’t I, I try and keep that in mind because that is the point of contact. And if someone starts going down a road of understanding it that, uh, I don’t get well in a way, as long as we’re, as long as I am in touch with my true nature, you know, good luck to them. And I might not want to continue the conversation, but here’s a, a rather fun way of, of communicating the absolute communicability of your true nature. So, uh, I’ll put it like this. Um, when you read the Budha and the scriptures, you know, you can’t, you can’t be sure that you are understanding exactly what the Budha said.
Speaker 2 00:22:19 Partly because it’s two and a half thousand years ago. It wasn’t written down for hundreds of years. Apparently. You know? So I mean, there’s a, there’s a lot of room for mistakes there. It was in another language. So I mean it involves translation, you know, it could be even two, lots of translation, you know, uh, you might be, have a headache at the time you read it and you know, miss a word. So there’s endless opportunities for misunderstanding what the Buddha said. So I mean to base your life on what you think the Buddha said is that is a gambler’s throw, isn’t it? You know, however, there is one thing that the Budds said that, um, just one thing the Budds said that you cannot misunderstand, even though it, it, he said it two and a half thousand years ago and uh, all of that, do you want to know what it is?
Speaker 1 00:23:19 Is it related to using your own experience to figure out what the Buddha said?
Speaker 2 00:23:25
Speaker 1 00:23:55 All right. Nice to talk to you, Richard
Speaker 3 00:23:59 Yeah,
Speaker 2 00:24:02 Yeah. Just send me the check for that last bit.
Speaker 3 00:24:05
Speaker 1 00:24:06 Thanks for that, Richard. Um, you also mentioned, and I found interesting that some people do get it and some people don’t within, I mean, uh, the Buddhist context, usually people go through some sort of concentration training until they are, let’s say that their mind is unified enough or concentrated enough so they can look deeply into the nature of their reality. Do you think that’s necessary? And that may be the reason why some people get it and some people don’t just because of the degree, you know, of ability of mind there, there, there is for somebody at some time.
Speaker 2 00:24:51 Well, I’ve got some experience of meditation. I, uh, lived in the meditation center for four years in the late seventies, early eighties. And, uh, I was invited to lead retreats. I led 10 day Vicary retreats for about three years, one after the other. So I did a lot of meditation. It was a great experience, a great spirit in running groups. So I’ve got a lot of experience, but I did find that, whereas I, who I was headless, you see, I could just sit and be space for whatever came up. I did notice quite a lot of people sat in order to get somewhere well. I mean, uh, that, that was rather a difficult thing to do, you know, for obvious reasons. But a again, I say that everyone gets it, but not everyone gets the highs or the deep realizations. When you sit quietly and do nothing, that is a very special kind of context and situation, quite different from running around, doing your job or driving a car or even eating, you know?
Speaker 2 00:25:55 Uh, so it is going to produce different states of mind from driving your car. Uh, so it has its value, but it is no more. Um, it, it, it, it isn’t, doesn’t make your true nature, any more accessible when you’re sitting quietly with your eyes closed and when you’re driving a car or I’m talking now, your true nature is equally accessible, whatever you’re doing, that’s for testing, but I find that true and all, and my friends do, uh, now, uh, if you do sit quietly, but I mean, if you do other things, you’ll get all kinds of astonishing states of mind, and these are healthy as long as you don’t hold onto them. Uh, it’s very good to be, you know, to experience a so-called expansive state of mind and, and all of that, but it will go what comes goes, and it’s not your true nature. It comes out of your true nature. So it’s the obvious thing really, you know, uh, say yes to what comes and say what say yes to it as it goes
Speaker 2 00:27:06 But I, I also, uh, it, it, there is a kind of idea about you probably don’t have this address, but, uh, that you’ve got to sort out your mind or purify yourself or something like that in order to really be who you are. I say, no, you’ll never do it. Uh, and if you think you’ve done it, that’s the biggest ego trip of all
Speaker 1 00:28:03 What do you think the role of practice is to, I mean, is there any point in practicing them?
Speaker 2 00:28:10 Well, yes and no. You see, I, it, you, so I think it’s a paradox, uh, practice, uh, on the one hand, yes, you, you, you’ve got to put all your energy into it and practice and practice. So, you know, uh, you, you remember to do it and be it, and in every, in every moment, and you might, one of the things that Douglas Harding said to me said, Richard, if you want to get this going, do things that remind you of it. Well, of course that’s what he did. He spent his whole life writing, talking about it. So it was always on the front burner for him, uh, in that, uh, way and hang out with others who are aware of it, you know, take action to put it on the front burner, to bring it into your life. You do something about it. You see
Speaker 2 00:29:12 Uh, you can’t stretch it out. There’s nothing to practice, uh, nothing to do. You are already it. And, uh, it is a paradox. And, uh, you enjoy both, uh, you know, you are, you are home and dry. You are, you are, you are sitting by the fire with your feet up. You’re completely comfortable. You are who you are. There’s nothing to do at the same time. You’re out on the ocean with the wind blowing in your face, on an adventure somewhere.
Speaker 1 00:30:31 You mentioned many times figuring out who we really are. Um, that reminded me. I was reading the other day, some work by do Harding about, uh, about the question, who am I, I’m wondering, what’s your experience with that question? How you use it if you are still using it. Yeah. Uh, what’s the importance of it?
Speaker 2 00:30:52 Well, I use it sometimes. I don’t have it as a regular question. Um, I think I’ve been through all kinds of phases in my life and, and maybe at one point I did use it. I used to read a lot of Ron and mahachi at one point, you know, and, uh, read Myre. I used to read the mystics. I, I don’t do that much these days. Uh, but it, it’s not a rejection of them. It’s just a different phase. And, uh, I, I am, uh, asking different questions I suppose, or asking my own questions. Uh, I, I, or not asking questions at all. I, what I find interesting these days is the social aspect of being aware of who you really are. So I’ll put this in a developmental context for you and your listeners and viewers that, uh, there are four main stages of our lives, the baby, the child, the adult, and then the see, seeing who you really are.
Speaker 2 00:31:56 And the baby is headless space for the world. Preverbal, see, just space. You look at the bird flying across the sky is you don’t, it’s not you looking, it’s just the bird flying across the sky. You’re empty for it. You, you haven’t yet got there and here, you know, and me and you now from day one, everyone around you starts reflecting back what you look like at the distance, cuz what you are, two meters is different from what you are at zero meters at two meters, I’m a person, much closer. I’m a patch of skin, much closer. I’m a cell than a molecule than an atom. If you almost nothing go away. And I’m a, a country, a planet, a star, a galaxy soap, I’m like an onion. You’re like an onion in that. You’ve got layers. And what you are depends on the range of the observer.
Speaker 2 00:32:48 This is the scientific context and you need every one of these layers in order to sit here and breathe. So excuse me, I don’t just need my lungs. I need the cells that make up my lungs and the molecules that make up my cells. And then I need my atmosphere and my sunlight and indeed the Galax seal everything. So it’s this one living system. And what the headless way is doing is saying well, okay, I admit I I’m Richard at that range, but I’m a planet at another range, but what am I at zero distance? And the experiments direct my attention to what I am at zero distance, which is this aware space full of the view out. You see? So that makes sense of it. When you’re a baby, you’ve just, you’re not yet aware of what you look like at two meters or at any distance, you’re just space.
Speaker 2 00:33:41 But as soon as you, um, you know, after day one, I saw a friend of mine, we’re on a zoom meeting and this friend, her sister just had a baby and the baby was two years old and she shared a video on the zoom meeting of the baby at two years old. And there is, and, and it’s quite, it opens its eyes, but the mom is saying, oh, you know, nice, you know, little baby or whatever opened your eyes. Oh look, you’ve opened your eyes right from day two. Mom is telling the baby what it looks like. Of course you see. So you might imagine that when you are an infant, you say to your friend, you say, you know, this idea of becoming aware of what you look like. In other words, you know, you look in the mirror and mom and dad say, that’s you and you go, that’s not,
Speaker 2 00:34:36 You see? And but they say, no, you’ve got to understand that, that when we look at you, that we see your face on your shoulders, I’m elaborating, you know, and you’ve got to get the idea you’re behind a face. Otherwise you won’t be able to understand why people are talking to you. You know why they’re interacting, looking at you. You well understand what they’re looking at. You, you need to become aware of your face. So you turn to your infant friend and you say, you know, this idea about becoming aware you behind a face. I just can’t do it. I, I remember it for about a second. And then I forget, you’re seeing your friend says, yeah, no, I’m like that. I’ll never do it, but you do do it. Can we just break for a moment? You just, I’m just gonna blow my nose.
Speaker 2 00:35:31 But, uh, you do do it, uh, because 24 7, everyone around you is telling you that. And reflecting back to you, what you look like and telling you that you are the one in the mirror. And uh, so by the time you’re an adult, you are no longer conscious of this open space. You are acting 24 7 as if you are behind a face, face to face with others, that you are your appearance, that you’re small, separate mortal, all of that. And what growing up is about is discovering what you look like at three meters and learning to act as if that is what you are at zero meters. As if you’re behind that face. Now that you could say is stabilizing your human identity, integrating and stabilizing your, uh, sense of your self as a person. Now, when you are a bit later in life, someone shows you your true nature that you are.
Speaker 2 00:36:42 They like Douglas Harley said, have a look there. Do you see your face there? And I went, no. Oh, of course there isn’t a face there. I, I that’s what everyone else tells me. I’m just built open. But then you say, but how can I stabilize this? How can I be aware of this 24 7? And you say that to your friend. You say, you say, I, I, I can see my true nature for about a second, but I just can’t keep it going. And your friend says, yeah, I know I’m like that. Well, that’s you it’s familiar. Isn’t it? Cuz what did you do to stabilize your human identity? It was hang out with others who were telling you all the time that you were human. And the only way of surviving was to use that currency. Right? Okay. Got that. So how, what is a good way of stabilizing now your awareness of your true identity, hang out with others.
Speaker 2 00:37:37 It’s a social thing who are aware of their true nature. Now this does not mean that you forget your human nature. Say I’m talking to you and I’m still aware of being Richard and your Andreas. But at the same time, we’re also aware of the one consciousness in which this conversation is happening. And that is we can talk about it cuz we’re experiencing it. So it’s kind of on the front burner or on the middle burner, we can bring it forward. And that’s how you quote unquote, I would say that’s a very skillful way, easy way. Pleasurable way of so-called stabilizing. Your true identity is, uh, you know, hang out with others. Uh, and you, I, you see when I met Douglas, that was, you said, do things that remind you of your true nature. But all what I also said was hang out with others who are enjoying it.
Speaker 2 00:38:30 So I, I all my life, I, since then I have hung out with others who are enjoying their true nature. So it’s kind of, and it was normal. So in that society, around Douglas, it was normal to be headless
Speaker 2 00:39:21 And you, you think, oh actually not only is it kind of embarrassing, you know, it’s to say that it’s wrong, you it’s just plain wrong. And uh, so I, I, uh, am really interested in sharing the headless way, which means communicating about it cuz everyone’s got it. It’s not sharing the experience. And I mean, it is initially, but once you’ve got it, you’ve got it. But it’s sharing the understanding and sharing the ideas and sharing the, the perspective you have your unique expec uh, perspective from the space, which enriches other people’s perspective. And that is the development and evolution of the new consciousness, the new consciousness, isn’t the space. I mean that, that is the same, but the new consciousness is the comes in language and in, uh, understanding through language, uh, of, uh, and in terms of the headless way in this, in this particular form, you know, I’m faced to no face with you.
Speaker 2 00:40:27 I’m still in the world. Move through me. I’m looking out of a single eye, close my eyes, no boundaries, uh, you know, two way pointing, looking out, looking in all of that. That’s the evolution that’s where the evolution comes. And one more thing is that when you are growing up and you stabilize your human identity, and this has happened, this happens with you individually, but it happens to the species. Probably you could, you could surmise that. The reason why becoming self-conscious took off from the pre self-conscious, his, you know, pre-history really the reason why it took off was that it worked better. Cuz if you were aware of your appearance, clearly you could, uh, you had an advantage over others. You could plan, you could locate yourself more easily in space and time. You could differentiate yourself from others and all of that. So it took off partly, you know, it was true from a certain point of view, but it worked better.
Speaker 2 00:41:36 And when you see who you are and see your space at center, as well as recognizing still your human self, this awareness of your true nature works better than not being aware of it. So that is one hopeful reason why it will continue to, uh, spread in the world because it actually works better when you to see your face to no face with someone than to confront them. Uh, it, it’s more relaxing to see your still when the, and the scene is moving through you than trying to get somewhere, uh, it is very relaxing to, to lie in bed with your eyes closed and be boundless, all of this, uh, and a thousand other ways in which it actually works better to be aware of your true nature than to be overlooking it looking at.
Speaker 1 00:42:31 Yeah. So you, you mentioned like a couple of times the importance of, well, not, not importa, but let’s say applications of headless way in daily life. How let’s say it’s a more free experience to live from that point versus from a more self-centered point of view. Uh, I wonder if there are any other functions or applications of the headless way or something I’m thinking about now, for example, is just to make a comparison in Buddhism or other traditions, a sophism for example, let’s say the manifestation of the journeys, love and compassion or something around those words, those concepts, uh, what would you say it’s the ultimate manifestation in living through a sort of no head?
Speaker 2 00:43:27 I, I think that there are countless applications, any direction you go in. I, I think you could, uh, I’m sure you could show how it works better to be aware of your true nature. Um, I think the thing about love is, uh, uh, my view of this is that, uh, your true nature on the one hand, uh, the space you’re looking out of is neutral. It has no qualities it’s empty. It, it has no preferences. It’s just empty. So you could say in a certain sense, it’s just neutral and, and there’s a greater, you know, I suppose there’s a disadvantage to that because people might might say, well, that’s not very interesting and I’m not interested in that, but the advantage, one of the advantages of it is that, well, you don’t have to hype, hype yourself up to get it. It it’s just neutral.
Speaker 2 00:44:23 It’s just there all the time. It’s like the ground it’s underneath you. It’s always there very plain, but, uh, reliable. So that is a great advantage. But this neutral space is not just empty. It’s empty, fulfilling. That’s full now for me of the screen and beyond that trees and clouds and houses and all of that, it is, it is built open for the world. And, uh, I would say that it is unconditionally open to the world. It doesn’t say, well, I’m gonna have that tree, but not that one. It’s just has no preferences. It welcomes unconditionally welcomes the world. Now this is very positive. This is supremely positive that your true nature says no to nothing. It says it’s got invisible arms around the whole thing. It welcomes everything. And I would say, this has got something to do with love, and I’m not talking about falling in love or the love that comes and goes. I’m talking about something deeper in a way than the feeling of love. This fact of being open for empty, for welcoming, embracing everything, including the things you don’t like.
Speaker 2 00:45:59 Now in terms of, uh, compassion, I think probably, um, compassion starts at home with being compassionate towards yourself.
Speaker 2 00:47:10 Right. You’re just, you’re just seeing that your true nature is better than you. It just says yes to you. Now you look at someone else or you is someone else that you might find difficult to be with and you, and, uh, you might still find them difficult to be with, and you might not, you know, you might have to say, no, stay there. You can’t come any closer. I’m sorry, you, you can’t come in my house or whatever it is. But at the same time, you see the space is open for them. And it’s one space and it’s there as much as, as yours. And it welcomes them. So it is not an easy thing because you realize that even someone that you don’t like you are space for, and it means that you, you cannot in the last resort, wash your hands on them.
Speaker 2 00:48:02 Now you might, it, it’s not saying you’ve just got to let them walk over you at all, growing up is learning your boundaries as an individual. And when you see who you are, you don’t drop that. You, you keep both going together. So there’s a, there’s a way of thinking. That’s just my way of thinking about love, unconditional love, compassion, uh, that, uh, you only, or true nature is, is absolutely compassionate and loving. Uh, Richard, uh, puts conditions on things. I’ll love you as long as you do this, you know, uh, but, uh, and that’s appropriate, but, uh, to try and get Richard to be unconditionally open is, is just ridiculous, but look where you are and notice now, look for yourself. Aren’t are you not unconditionally open for whatever is happening? I
Speaker 1 00:48:58 Am. That’s really beautiful and easy to understand where to put the whole thing together. I think. Yeah. Uh, I think very appropriate for, for people without much exposure to any practice before, you know, that’s right.
Speaker 2 00:49:15 And what I can add to that is, uh, in terms of the headless way, look at someone, including yourself in the mirror and notice it’s face there to no face here. You face to no face or no face to face. We trade faces. You’ve got my face. I assume I’ve got yours here. We exchange appearances. So face to no faces. You know, if you’ve got to somehow kind of produce loving compassion towards someone. Okay, good luck. Uh, great. You know, good. But on the other hand, notice the setup that you actually face there to no face here and then see what happens. This is a very concrete, physical accessible, you know, you, you are standing in line at the, you know, in the shop and, uh, you you’re just being space for the person at the table or space for the shop, you know? And, uh, that is, that is so vivid. Uh, and so personal in a way it’s so, uh, not an abstract theory. It’s, there’s the person and you, when you are face to no face with someone and attending to that, I think find you really look at them. I mean, you’re not in, in an intrusive way, but you, you are space for them. You receive them just as they are, you know, that that’s, um, that is interesting.
Speaker 1 00:50:45
Speaker 2 00:51:21 Yes. And, and I, I think the rules of the road are important, you know, the, the, uh, learning to be kind and to be polite and all of that, uh, uh, I think the, the rules, uh, the traditions go along with the spontaneous experience. So, you know, on the one hand you are driving and you obey the rules of the road. You don’t go over the speed limit, you stop at stop signs. You know, all of that. Otherwise there’ll be chaos. You can’t just say, well, I’m free. I’m just going to do what I like. I’m gonna drive it 200 miles an hour and not stop. That’s ridiculous. But at the same time, as you are obeying the rules of the road, sensible rules privately your space for the scenery to flow through you. You’re not in a box moving along the road, you’re this, you know, so there you are, you understand, you’ve got to be kind to people, you recognize their boundaries and your boundaries.
Speaker 2 00:52:22 There’s the sort of social rules of the road, aren’t they? But at the same time you are with them being them being space for them, there’s no separation. There’s no dividing line between the space here and the face there. So you, you, you’ve got both the, the thing that sometimes people you can see in kind of cult leaders, they say, I’m free. I can do anything. Well, they, they’ve confused your, the freedom of your true nature and their human nature. You’re a human, excuse me, you can’t do anything as your, as a human. I mean, you can’t, but you shouldn’t
Speaker 1 00:53:15 Yeah. That makes sense. That’s, that’s very clear. Thanks, Richard. It seems that, uh, the headless way uses a lot of your senses to point out to your true nature, like how you use your vision, for example, seems that is particularly crucial. Uh, I find that very similar to Zen, for example, which is a very yo YOIC approach. Um, for example, is one of the instructions of let’s say rings, I saying, uh, is to use sort of a peripheral vision throughout your day 24 7. That sort of seems similar. So, so it’s, the structure are to relax, relax your gaze and use this peripheral vision as you go through your day, unless you really need to use a focus vision for specific tasks. But
Speaker 2 00:54:07 I didn’t, I didn’t know, Sen did that. They must have got it from the headless way.
Speaker 1 00:54:12
Speaker 2 00:54:15 Oh, come on. Sen gives some, uh, you know, appreciation of the source there, but it’s well, yeah, it’s the head this way is, is very experiential. And, you know, it’s not just vision. Uh, I’m listening to the sounds now in the silence and, uh, I’m feeling my body sensations in the absence of a body here, and I close my eyes and there’s a darkness, just one consciousness with no boundary. So, uh, yeah, the headless way appeals to your direct experience and, uh, asks you to test the hypothesis that you’re not what you look like, or, you know, the hypothesis that you are still in the scenery move through you, or that the sounds, you know, when I’m speaking for me, the sounds come out of nowhere, uh, obviously for you, they’re coming out my mouth, but at zero, they come out nowhere. So it’s all for testing with your senses. Yeah,
Speaker 1 00:55:16 Yeah. Um,
Speaker 2 00:55:34 But yeah,
Speaker 1 00:55:35 Right.
Speaker 2 00:55:37 They, they, you know, that thing, uh, uh, Jesus said, you know what? Uh, my eye is single and my whole body is filled with light with no place dark. So you, you, you say, well, you know, obviously he was talking about a single eye. He’s saying my eye is single and my whole play body is filled with light with no place, dark. He, he was talking about his true nation. Then you say, but, you know, if he wasn’t, he should have been
Speaker 2 00:56:38 I, I must accept that you are looking out of the, a single eye there. I mean, how ridiculous to think you are. I don’t know. Some little thing inside ahead, looking out of two holes, you know, that’s just not your experience. And I, I can ask that and you can confirm that, I suppose, but once you accept that you are looking out of space, uh, uh, you, I say you, you, you accept everyone isn’t and including Jesus and the bud and the Budha, couldn’t see the space more clearly than you are seeing it now, you know, it is just, it’s not, it’s not that you are advanced. It just, uh, you can’t do it any other way. So this is very egalitarian and this is where we’re one. This is where we’re one really are one undivided. Yeah. So the listener or the viewer I say to you now you are looking at the same space as I am, and I celebrate, uh, undivided invited, uh, identity here. But I understand you’ve got your own unique experience in life flowing from this one space. How, how wonderful and mysterious is that? Yeah.
Speaker 1 00:57:52 Yeah, it is. Would you mind re Richard, uh, sharing one of the experiments to point out listeners and myself that through nature nature?
Speaker 2 00:58:03 Yes. I will take you through a little guided meditation that I’ve sort of developed. All right. So, uh, first of all, obviously notice you can’t see your head instead, you see the world, so that’s a nonverbal experience, but as you’re looking out, uh, notice you are looking outta one boundless space. You’re not looking outta two little holes in a head. You look, and you can bring your hands in front of you. If you are watching and just hold them apart like this, and then bring them back either side of your head and they disappear into this space, you see, and then emerge. So that visually that’s just bringing our attention to this single eye that I call single space. And, uh, a bit like you were saying with the peripheral vision, you see the whole field of view and it fades out all the way around now, here’s the little guided meditation.
Speaker 2 00:58:56 So when you look at two objects, uh, well look at one object first in front of you and notice it’s surrounded by other things. And any object you look at is surrounded by other things, and it might be the background of the wall or something, but all right, anything you look at is within an environment. Now look at the whole field of view. That’s your peripheral soft eyes view. And you notice how it fades out. Is it, is there anything around it? Is there anything above it or to the left? I say, no, it’s just floating and nothing is it. As it’s given it fades out into nothing all the way around, it’s not inside something else. So that’s the first thing it’s not inside anything. Second thing is you look at an object again and compare its size with another object. And it’s either bigger or smaller than that, or could be the same size, I suppose.
Speaker 2 00:59:52 So size is relative. You look at that object and yet another object, and it might be smaller now rather than bigger. So size is relative. You, it, you compare it now look at the whole field of view, where it fades out and ask yourself how big is the whole field of view. And I say, well, there is not a second on the right to compare it with it’s single. So I can’t say how big it is. It’s incomparable. So the field of view, what I’m looking at, I can’t say how big it is because, uh, I can’t compare it with another and I it’s not inside anything. And, uh, the third thing is when you look at two objects, you can measure the distance between them, between one thing and another. Now look at the whole field of view and, and ask yourself how far away is it?
Speaker 2 01:00:45 What distance is it? Well, anything you measure from is within the field of view, and you’re looking out of a space that the whole field of view is just no distance. That’s what I see. No distance at all. It’s just right here in consciousness. All right. So now close your eyes and, uh, listener or viewer, please close your eyes. Be aware of the darkness. How big is the darkness while there is not a second to compare it with? So I cannot say, is it inside something? Well, like the fuel of view, it just fades out into nothing. It’s just hanging in consciousness. How far away is it? Well from where is, it’s just given right here in consciousness. Now you’d be aware of, of sounds what I might call the field of sound and my voice, or other sounds some loud, some soft changing. You see how big is the whole field of sound?
Speaker 2 01:01:53 Well, there is not a second to compare it with, see, I can hear a plane now. And, uh, it’s within the field of sound. There’s not outside me. It’s, it’s given in this silence in which my voice is happening. You see one consciousness and, uh, how far away are these sounds, you see, well, aren’t, they all given right where you are as it were. I can’t say how big the field of sound is. Cuz there isn’t a second. It’s not inside anything it’s not distant. See? And it’s actually happening in the same space as the darkness is happening and then go to and then go, uh, I’ll come back to that. I’ll just quit that
Speaker 2 01:02:48 And now go to your body sensations. But, uh, as much as you can put aside the image that you’ve learned and just attend to the sensations, which are a bit like a cloud of sensations and ask yourself how big is this field of sensation while there is not a second to compare it with as single. And are these sensations inside anything I’m, I’m not talking about the image you’ve learned. Are they just appearing like sounds in consciousness. Isn’t the field of sensation single. See you don’t experience anyone else’s I don’t anyway. And, and how far away is it? Where is it? Isn’t it right here in consciousness.
Speaker 2 01:03:44 And then you can, uh, attend to the same things with your thoughts and feelings, your mind, you know, imagine a number there’s a thought or think of a mountain. You see there’s an image now, where do these come from? They just come out. Like Zen says, mind comes out of no mind and, uh, think of a problem you’ve got, you know, it might be an ache or a pain or a problem at work or in a relationship or money and be aware of the, you know, the quire anxiety. You might feel. There’s a feeling arising. You see? So now I ask th this is a kind of field of mind feelings and thoughts and images and memories. How big is the whole field of mind?
Speaker 2 01:04:40 Well, there is not a second to compare it with, is it inside anything in your head or in a box or I don’t know. Or is it just in no mind rising in this empty consciousness you see? So this is all the way of using your senses to ask the question, who am I, what am I are you contained? See, do you have a size? Are you inside anything? I’m not, I, how many consciousnesses do you actually experience? Now? You might remember Richard and Andreas and your friends. So at that level you say, well, there’s lots of people, but right now, going by your experience, I go by my experience, this consciousness that I am has no boundary has no name has no age, no address. And I don’t find a second. And I could say everything is within it within me. You see, and I’ve come to this, not by believing or remembering a scripture, but by attending to how big I am to where I am, see how available is that you see that that’s supremely available, accessible, simple, and there’s no hierarchy. You can’t get a bigger space, you know, or a more advanced space in which things are happening.
Speaker 2 01:06:41 Now, what you are experiencing, what thoughts and feelings are gonna be different from mine. Good, but where they’re coming from, where they disappear into. I say that there’s no way of differentiating, you know, the, so-called your space from my space, just visible indivisible. And I celebrate that undivided. I celebrate the undivided space and I celebrate the differences that are arising within it. Very mysterious. So you’re now going to do a magic trick, which is you’ve got darkness, boundless darkness, you see, and sounds and thought and feelings. And you’re now going to, uh, put it rather boldly. You’re now going to create colors and shapes, flood the space with colors and shapes. So open your eyes and look just magic colors and shapes appearing in the space. Now, have you suddenly become small? I haven’t see. Have you, have you suddenly found that there’s another consciousness in your own experience?
Speaker 2 01:08:01 No, there’s only one. See, uh, have you suddenly discovered that, uh, uh, you know, you have an age? No I don’t or a, a nationality. No, I don’t. I, I do as Richard. I understand that, but, uh, you know, if I close my eyes, I can imagine Richard and his age and his nationality and I open my eyes and I see that, but here, nothing changes. And I understand that the same is true for you. Now when the human race takes this on and recognizes and celebrates the fact that we are all this one consciousness, that’s gonna make a difference to the way relate. We relate to each other. It’s not gonna create utopia, you know, but it’s gonna make a difference cuz it’s true and it’s highly practical and hugely significant. Yeah. What could be more significant in our relationships with each other, both at the personal level and at the national level, the international level to recognize than to recognize that we’re coming from the same consciousness.
Speaker 2 01:09:11 It, it, it, it is radical and it’s not a belief. It, you tested it’s true. But, uh, the human race has been under the sway of convention that we are what we look like for a long time. And that is a great advantage over not being aware of our appearance, but we’ve come to a point now where our deep sense of separation, um, is endangering life because not only do we see, we feel separate, but we’ve got the weapons and the machines to destroy a and we have to come to our senses directly to our senses and wake up to who we really are. Uh, uh, before we, you know, a, a thousand years ago, we, we were, you know, might be well aware of our separation, you know, or 2000 years ago with the Romans, you know, and we do horrible things, but we couldn’t destroy life, but now we can.
Speaker 2 01:10:22 And so waking up to our true nature is, uh, uh, is going to help us, uh, uh, recognize, uh, a way of somehow, uh, drawing back from the brink of destruction. Really. So it’s highly relevant in terms of climate change in terms of you see the wars that we have now, as we all know with Ukraine, they’re not like wars in the past. The wars we have now are so potentially destructive. I mean, Mari Paul, you know, obliterate whole city, just like that, that has not really happened before second world war. There was, we were getting that way. Uh, but now, uh, it is like they say war in the 21st, century’s absurd. I mean, it’s absurd because it’s so completely dangerous. And I say that, uh, uh, if, when seeing who you really are is not just a kind of spiritual hobby, it is recognizing a truth about ourselves that has huge implications for the way we relate to each other. You know, even our, our sworn enemies are coming from the same place. And it, it, it, you still say, no, you, you might have to fight them, but you also realize that at the end of the day, it is one, and that recognition is so important even with your enemies, because we’ve got to live together. Yeah.
Speaker 2 01:12:04
Speaker 1 01:12:06
Speaker 2 01:12:12 And if seeing who you really are, does not have, uh, relevance to today’s problems like climate change and nuclear war, uh, you know, what good is it? Yeah,
Speaker 1 01:12:26 Yeah. That, that makes sense. That makes sense. Any advice that you would give to anybody trying to get more in touch with these two nature or who they are?
Speaker 2 01:12:37 Oh, well, you know, I say, uh, go to our website, you’ll find my email address there or through you guys, uh, because if you wanna hang out with others on the zoom groups, which are free, you know, if you want to, uh, get deeper into this in the sense of the headless way and sharing that, or just hang out with others who are seeing who they are just to have that Contag, you know, infectiousness, uh, you, I, that, to me, that’s the kind of easiest way to go about it. Just, you know, kind of hang out with others that, that that’s the kind of, uh, you know, the, the, the pleasurable route. Um, but there is lots on the website. There’s lots on the, the, uh, YouTube site and, uh, you know, listen to this podcast 10 times.
Speaker 1 01:13:25
Speaker 2 01:13:33 Well, I delight to see you again and to share our true nature, right? Yeah. And, uh, I’ve talked a lot, but I’ve just taken the opportunity to share my ideas. So I’ve, rabbited on quite a lot. I know, but, uh, thank you for giving me the opportunity to share and, uh, you know, that it is important for, for, for the human race, isn’t, it, it, it, this is not just a kind of, uh, little hobby mm-hmm,
Speaker 2 01:14:48 So thank you.
Speaker 1 01:14:49 Thank you so much, Richard. Um, I think you have a very inspiring journey and a lot of wisdom to share, so hopefully we’ll be able to chat a little bit more afterwards as well. Maybe I
Speaker 2 01:15:02 Hope so. Yeah. Yeah.
Speaker 1 01:15:03 Thanks Richard. Bye bye. Okay. Thank you for listening to this episode, to find the links mentioned today, please visit our firstname.lastname@example.org. Here, you will also find resources for in-depth and personalized meditation training, such as video courses and live events conducted by highly qualified teachers. If you enjoy this episode, please consider leaving a rating and review on items and subscribing to the podcast. This helps spread the word and reaching more people who could benefit from this work. Thanks again, and see you next time.