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Thomas Hübl interview:

  Awakening and The Power of 'We'

In this interview, spiritual teacher Thomas Hübl speaks with Banyen on the potentials & challenges of Awakening in contemporary life, the value of collective practice, and the beauty of spontaneity.

Banyen: Welcome! The title of your Sounds True audio CD set is the The Power of We. Can you describe the theme of The Power of We, and your approach to the topic?

Thomas Hübl: Yes, so first of all, we call it The Power of We because I deeply believe that there are two different spiritual paths: one is more a path of retreating, going out of society, and practicing more in solitude, or in a monastery. Another path what I think most of the readers here will do is to practice in our daily lives. We have jobs, we have families, we are in a cultural context. The Power of We describes a spiritual path that we can practice in our everyday lives. Often we hear that people think "Oh, if I just had more time... and then this & this & this is an obstacle to my practice... and then this & this & this keeps me from practicing, and I have such a busy schedule and..." So what if all of that turns into my spiritual life, and then I really make Awakening my first priority within the "storm of the marketplace" if I describe the culture as the "marketplace".

So The Power of We describes the different modules, and different aspects of the practices that I think are important, and that turn my life as a whole into a spiritual practice. It also deals with the difficulties that we meet while we live in the marketplace.

An interesting part of why we called it The Power of We is because I believe that the "we" a committed community of practitioners, and researchers, and explorers can support each other, challenge each other, and grow with each other. So it creates pockets of Awakening within culture, where we create fields that stabilize what we want to do. It's like, why do people train together in a soccer team, or in any other sports team? It's because you have a mutual challenge and motivation. And that's why we call it The Power of We, because there is a lot of power in a mutual practice.

Banyen: And what is the greatest challenge for practitioners living in what you describe as the "marketplace"?

Thomas Hübl: The greatest challenge is resistance. The greatest challenge is that I resist my life, that I resist certain experiences that I have, that I often have ideas about life that are not coming from my natural connectedness to life, that are disassociated ideas that I carry within myself; so when I meet certain situations, the gap or separation that I often feel between me and the situation, between me and other people, between me and my job (between "me and...") gives birth to all kinds of difficulties that we experience, where we no longer feel that we are in a high coherence or synchronicity with life in general.

So there is the overcoming of this gap, seeing it, identifying where I resist life, and turning the resistance into a creative participation. And seeing that I actually have a lot of power once I decide to participate, to connect, to relate, to be part of, and to practice within myself a deeper transpersonal dimension. Then suddenly my life starts to flow, to line up - I meet the right people at the right time, or I read the right book at the right moment - and it seems like I'm living in a higher coherence between my inner world and my outer world.

So I think that the highest challenge is to overcome the gap that comes from resisting that. And I think we all have good reasons, from where we come from, why we do that, but I think that our Awakening process needs to transcend that to become a full power in the world. To really release my creative power and participate in the world.

Banyen: If there is only one message you would like to provide to people what would it be?

Thomas Hübl
: One message [pause]... That if I take Awakening seriously, then it needs to become my first priority. And it's a very radical path. So in order to follow in the footsteps of some of the greatest Saints and Sages and Mystics that we've had on the planet, or that we have on the planet right now, Awakening literally needs to infuse all areas of my life, and it needs to consume my life. And in the spiritual practice, we meet often people who are looking for current answers, like questions in their life that are hard to solve, or that there are some other issues of integration, or becoming more whole in certain areas, but ultimately the true Awakening is something that is very radical. And I believe that to devote my life to something greater than myself is a wonderful and challenging, but also a very radical thing to do. So if there was one message, then I would say that Awakening has to become my first priority in life.

Banyen: What is the most inspirational thing about your life that keeps you on your path?

Thomas Hübl
: I think it is the joy to constantly discover new things. So when I run groups, in every group that I give, I learn something new. Often I meet very inspirational people, and I learn something new. So the perfume of the newness of things that I didn't see before. And I believe that living a very creative life, or living a life where I become a voluntary update of myself, so that I really sign up voluntarily for updating my life and evolving my life, comes with the joy of constantly discovering new things, either by what I say or by what I hear from you. And so if I am really curious all the time, I will constantly see new nuances, new insights, new pearls hidden in everyday life situations that are unbelievable! So I think one of the most inspirational things is the perfume of the newness of life. Like when life really appears, emerges, in a fresh way, and it is spontaneous, it's original, it's creative, then it has a certain perfume. And I think this perfume evokes the original creative force of the Universe. I think that is one of the most inspirational qualities in life that I experience both inside and outside.


Thomas Hübl is an Austrian-born contemporary spiritual teacher and founder of the Academy of Inner Science.

Interview ©  April 5, 2015
Banyen Books & Sound