Ram DassI first learned of Ram Dass around the same time I was introduced to Alan Watts. I was 18 and that collision opened me up to a whole world of counterculture writers who turned my consciousness inside up and rightway down. I picked up books by Carlos Castanada, Robert Pirsig and Thomas Merton among others, and for years I was immersed in a kind of spiritual philosophy that had a huge influence on the way I perceive the world today. In 1997 Ram Dass had a debilitating stroke which left him partially paralyzed and affected his speech. Despite his handicap he continues to give talks like this one on awareness posted by the Omega Institute where he “…engages you into a moment regarding your choice and arrangement of your birth and death.” On his own site there is another video where he chats with Wayne Dyer about a letter Wayne wrote and reveals how he is also still being influenced by his own past today. It is a great piece of personal history staged as a conversation between two men who have made a positive impact on the lives of thousands.

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