• Feb

    A Side Trip to Austin to Meet Stephan Bodian, Author of “Wake Up Now”


    Contrails near my hotel in Austin.

    austin contrails

    I’ll admit I didn’t care for the place, which is why I haven’t posted any photos. It was a huge complex, but the rooms were essentially large concrete boxes with only one window and worn furniture, which wasn’t very nice. But since I was only there for two days, I didn’t care all that much. Besides, I wasn’t going to be spending much time there.

    I came to visit a spiritual teacher (Stephan Bodian) who I’d been studying with for the past two years. Prior to my visit, all our sessions were conducted by email and over the phone. Now that I was down south, this was the perfect opportunity to fly over here and meet him.

    This also coincided with a book promotion that he was doing. He recently authored the book: “Wake Up Now: A Guide to the Journey of Spiritual Awakening.” I consider this book to be an important and revolutionary work, because it doesn’t just talk about awakening (spiritual enlightenment) alone, as so many other books do.

    The main difference between Stephen’s book and the so many others I’ve read is it talks about what happens after awakening. This is what makes this work so valuable.

    Other books stop at awakening and there is this mistaken idea that once you awaken that’s the end of the show. You hang up your enlightenment plaque and that’s it.

    Reality is very different. What now occurs is the ever unfolding path of awakening. After the spiritual honeymoon is over, you come back to your life and reality shows you all the leftover places where you’re still stuck and the invitation is to see those and to let those go. This is an oversimplification, but this is what happens, in my experience.

    One important thing though. Even though there is a coming back, a resetting if you will, you don’t go back to the way you were before awakening. Something has inextricably changed, as Adyashanti says, and you now know who you are, beyond any doubt.

    Now, the task is to embody what has happened, and to let awakening flower, which it does in it’s own time, but from what I understand, that could take from 5-10 years.

    whole foods austin

    Outside the Austin headquarters of Whole Foods. The place is massive, over 80,000 sq/ft. I’m told the London store is even bigger, at over 150,000 sq/ft. If you’ve never been to one of these stores you’ll be stunned by the opulence. I’ve never seen anything like it before or since.

    whole foods seating

    The seating area outside Whole Foods. It was a bit blustery that day, and cold.

    Driving around Austin scared the crap out of me, especially on the highways. There are so many on and off ramps and people are driving at an incredible rate of speed. More than once I nearly got creamed when I went to move into another lane. It really stressed me out.

    Also, if you have a GPS, as I do, it won’t work in the vicinity of the Austin airport. I fiddled with mine for 20 minutes and couldn’t get an accurate reading. When I rolled up to the National car counter, I discovered they had the same problem. You have to get a good distance away from the airport, and even then, I had problems.

    My GPS was scrambled for a long time, telling me to turn off at nonexistent intersections, etc. I had to reset it while I was on the highway (a dangerous thing to do), but there was no other option. After the reset, it worked, but is still seemed a bit flitchy in the Austin area. When I got back to San Diego, it worked without a hitch.

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