323: Norman Fischer on Spiritual Growth through Imagination

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By Eric Zimmer|Wondery. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Norman Fischer is a poet, author, Zen Buddhist teacher and priest. He’s a graduate of Iowa’s Writer’s Workshop and he’s been publishing poetry since 1979. He’s the author of 17 books of poetry, 6 books of prose on Zen and religion as well as numerous articles and essays. In this episode, Eric and Norman discuss his book, The World Could Be Otherwise: Imagination and the Bodhisattva Path.

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In This Interview, Norman Fischer and I discuss Spiritual Growth through Imagination and…

  • His book, The World Could Be Otherwise: Imagination and the Bodhisattva Path
  • Redefining imagination and discovering it’s prevalence and role in life
  • The role of imagination in spiritual paths
  • How we don’t see the world exactly as it is, but rather through filters
  • Loosening our grasp on what we think of as absolute reality
  • Constructing useful stories in our mind rather than living by our default stories
  • The essential ways in which imagination enriches the experience of our lives
  • When we realize we are making our lives for ourselves, we have the power to make it differently
  • The Bodhisattva: A Buddha in training
  • Compassion, Love and Service for the benefit of others
  • The Bodhisattva Path
  • The myth of separateness and the truth of interconnection and love
  • That holding two (seemingly contradictory) ideas in our mind at one time offers us depth perception
  • How ideals can inspire us rather than put pressure on us
  • The disease of perfectionism
  • How to engage in “Joyful Effort” when you don’t feel very joyful and don’t have much effort to spare
  • Patience: Just keep going and be of benefit to others
  • Turning toward what’s arising: facing it, embracing it, breathing into it and going forward with it
  • The problematic nature of favoring one’s own suffering over the suffering of others

Norman Fischer Links:

normanfischer.org

Poems by Norman Fischer

Essays by Norman Fischer

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