In late March 2023, Sam Harris and I had a 90-minute online meeting exploring a range of issues of mutual interest. Title. The Whole of Life. Content below includes a brief bio of Sam, outline of meeting, quotes from listeners and edited message.
Link to Audio of Dialogue
There is a 30-day free trial to the Sam Harris App. No card required. Artwork of teachers on link by Jason Chatfield.
Sam Harris, 55, is the author of best-selling books such as The End of Faith and Waking Up. Millions have listened to his debates on YouTube. His writing has been published in more than 15 languages. He has three decades of experience in insight meditation since the 1990s in the East and USA. Dr. Harris is a co-founder and CEO of Project Reason, a non-profit foundation devoted to spreading scientific knowledge and secular values in society. He is known for his immense faith in science/secularism and his fierce criticism of Islam.
Audio recording of this blog 2023.04.6. Sam Harris Audio.Post
Outline of Dialogue with Sam Harris.
Sam Harris, a US citizen, speaks online with Christopher Titmuss, a senior Dharma teacher and a former Theravada Buddhist monk in Thailand and India from 1970-1976. Social critic and campaigner, he is the author of more than 20 books.
Sam started with asking Christopher about his background, including his extensive travels and the “immortal words” that inspired his Buddhist ordination; Christopher spoke about his encounters with spiritual teachers across the East, including Ajahn Buddhadāsa and H. W. L. Poonja.
He discusses with Sam the dual language of Path and Goal and the Non-Dual (Advaita) approach to awakening. Christopher expresses concern with the term “atheism,” the need for alternatives and recognition of supportive elements of religion.
The 90-minute dialogue includes the issue of gurus/communities.
Christopher refers to self and freedom in all directions, including liberation from dependency on the here and now.
He also inquired into some of Sam’s views.
Extracts from Quotes from Listeners.
Congratulations on giving such a wonderful interview to Sam Harris. I listened to it in one take as soon as I saw it was up.
I greatly enjoyed your conversation with Sam Harris. You were not afraid to question Sam’s views.
I began my practice after an awakening experience I had listening to Sam Harris. I have questions about meditation, in particular, not identifying with thoughts vs embracing thoughts.
I listened to your interview and you spoke very clearly about what I see and what I have seen so for many years.
I thoroughly enjoyed the dialogue between you and Sam Harris. Much to reflect upon.
The last bit was inspiring. Made me smile and I was nodding my head (yes!).
An (edited) message from Sam Harris to Subscribers of his App – Waking Up.
I wanted to take a moment to welcome you to Waking Up, and to share a bit more about why I decided to build this app.
In the late 80s and 90s, I made many trips to India and Nepal, where I got the chance to study with some of the greatest meditation teachers alive at that time.
I spent around two years on silent retreats, ranging in length from one week to three months.
I followed up my undergraduate degree with a Ph.D. in neuroscience. As I was just beginning my doctoral research, though—studying belief, disbelief, and uncertainty using fMRI—the September 11th attacks occurred.
So I stepped away from my research and published two books—The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation.
Waking Up is where I most fully explore this conceptual and experiential terrain—and where I share the practices and insights that transformed my own life for the better.
Waking Up is run as a subscription business. We provide free membership to anyone who can’t afford it.
PS. Before the meeting, Sam kindly sent me as a dana (donation) a quality audio recorder and microphone as a backup to his recording and for my use in the future. THANK YOU.