Excellence Reporter: Dr. Roche, what is the meaning of life?
Lorin Roche: I have a hunch that we humans are entertaining to the life of the cosmos. Unlike other animals, human beings don’t know who they are, and so are always searching. We also may be a way that the universe perceives its own beauty. Birds, bugs, whales, all see the stars and navigate by them. Leave it to human beings to invent a telescope and use it to gaze in awe at the mystery of the distant suns, and read their light with a spectrograph. And then say, “Hey, let’s put a telescope the size of a school bus in orbit around the Earth, and have a look.”
I spend a lot of time interviewing people about their natural experiences of awe and wonder, listening to them talk about caring for babies, photographing wild animals, inventing new styles of surfboards, crafting dance performances, making art––and it is obvious that when people are being in love with creation in all these ways, there is no question about the meaning of life. They know in every cell they are living and breathing the meaning of life. These experiences are spontaneous and provide natural doorways into intimacy with life, which is the essence of meditation. Human beings have an instinct for meditation, for going deeper into the subtle energies and perceptions of being alive.
There are thousands of different meditation techniques, and the essence of many of them is simply: “Select an aspect of life’s self-renewing rhythms you love so much you want to merge with it. Okay now go ahead and give in to that urge to merge.” We seem to be built out of love and our destiny is to love that which we arose from, and know it new in each moment.
~Dr. Lorin Roche began practicing with a classic yoga text, the Vijnana Bhairava Tantra, in 1968 as part of scientific research on the physiology of meditation. He fell in love with meditation and has been sharing that delight ever since. He has a PhD from the University of California at Irvine, where his research focused on the language of meditative experience. He is the author of The Radiance Sutras and Meditation Made Easy. With his wife, Camille Maurine, he wrote Meditation Secrets for Women. A teacher of meditation for 46 years, Lorin’s approach centers on how to customize the practices to suit one’s individual nature. Lorin trains meditation teachers worldwide and offers a meditation teacher training program that is registered with Yoga Alliance.
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