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May 13, 2020 37 mins

World-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation, Deepak Chopra, challenges us to “move our consciousness into activity” on this Road to Somewhere. But what does that even mean? As we talk with him about his 90th bestseller, Metahuman, he guides us to an elevated level of self-awareness, non-doing, and less entangled in habit. Transcending our existence is the goal in this episode. @deepakchopra Join his community by texting 914-444-5838. 

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Episode Transcript

Available transcripts are automatically generated. Complete accuracy is not guaranteed.
Speaker 1 (00:10):
Well, meta means beyond and human means the conditioned, the
conditions story. Every story that has been told has not
only been recycled, but it has been improved upon. Hey,

thanks for joining us on Road to Somewhere. When we
talk about exploration, adventure, major life change and transformation is
about not necessarily knowing where we're going, but having faith
that the journey will be worthwhile. I'm Lisa Oz, I'm
Jill Herzig. I'm fighting a case of intimidation here because
we have such a major world changing guest with us today.

We do he is Oh my gosh, he's Time Magazines,
one of the top on heroes, founder of the Tropra Foundation,
Triple Global, and he's waving his hand in the air
and everybody knows defact travel. He does not need an introduction.
I just want to put throw out one little stat
You have nine books. How is that physically possible? I

mean you have to be a new Arctic. So that's
what I am. Unbelievable alright, so compulsive and and your
your newest book, national bestseller, met a Human unleashing your
infinite potential. Unbelievable. So this podcast is called Road to Somewhere.

It's about the journey. As we mentioned in the in
the little preamble and the feeling loss. So where a
journey usually has a destination, we're going somewhere. Where should
we be headed? Where are we going? What are we doing?
Why are we here? De fact? You know you remind
me of a poem from TS. Eliott. We shall not

cease from exploration, and end of our exploring is to
arrive where we started from and know that place for
the first time. So we're headed to our source, right
back to this, this recording room, to the source. This
recording room is a spacetime event in consciousness. That's all

it is. It'll pass well, it will definitely passed, as
in the room will pass, the program will pass, the
studio will pass. Just a perceptual activity in consciousness. What
is real is the consciousness in which this is happening.
And that's what that's what the journey is, to get
in touch with that consciousness. For humans, yes, not for

other species. For you know, I don't think other species
have stories about existence. They just exist and they are
part of the ecosystem. But we are interesting species. Either
we are an anomaly or we are the universe. Wanting
to know itself. I don't think there's any other species

that has a story about existence. Existence is right, and
every other species is part of the ecosystem that creates
a homo static self regulatory balance. Humans have ruined that,
of course, with climate change and extinction of species and
poison in our food chain and violence and mechanized death

and cyber hacking and everything that we do to basically
disconnect from our source. But as a result of that,
we've also created technology. You know, we are able to
do this program. We have very conditioning. We have you know,
we don't die have heat stroke, or we didn't die
of infections coming back now. But the point is this

is a very strange species because we have created a
subject to object split. There's me, and there's the rest
of the universe that's bizarre, and there are the stories
that we're telling ourselves. Yeah, And the story is, this
is a physical world. I was born on such and
such dig such as such time, greenwich, meantime, such and

such latitude longitude. We made it up. The whole thing
is a story. And then after we create a story,
then we want to know what does it mean. First
of all, we created it now that we have to
imbue it with meaning, I was born, I'm going to
go through this lifestyle and then there's death after that.

Numerous stories, there's heavens as hell as purgatory, there are
locas made it all up. So okay. So if you're
a child that is born in complete isolation and never
hears one of those stories, do you think they have
the ability even to reflect him? Well, so what happens?

Then they are not part of society. We you've heard
of children who are born in the wild, brought up
by say another species, even a primate or a bear,
and or a wolf. You've heard of those wolf boys.
They don't know, they don't they don't become part of

our social constructs and our society. So what is the
first thing we do? And we're born as soon as
as soon as you start to become a little aware,
your parents start telling your stories, and in fact they
tell your stories before sometimes nurs we rhymes and you know,
stories and all interesting stories, but recycled bostly and some

improved on. But what's the first thing we learned? Counting
ABC alphabet, then words and then stories, and then we
embed ourselves in the story. You say, I'm a male human,
I'm Indian or American or whatever. You know, this is

my nationality, this is my culture, this is my inheritance,
all of which has very created the human universe. We
live in a human universe. Everything that you see and
touch and taste and smell and give a constructor is
a human invention. So when I look at this iPhone

as an adult, it's an iPhone because I learned language,
and I also learned counting and all these things that
we learned. You know, I don't remember when I learned them.
You No one remembers when they learned how to speak,
but they learned. No one remembers how they learned how
to interpret raw perception, but they did. You know, you

were told this is a hand, this is a spectacle,
or this is a nose, this is a body. That's
the empire said building before you were told that it
was a perceptual activity in consciousness. The interpretation came later,
and that created the human universe. Everything you from stars

to galaxies to other realms of existence, is all made up.
So this is where I'm confused. I understand to a
certain extent. Okay, maybe it's the definition of what you're
saying a human construct because on the word if by
human construct you mean anything, that's the word. Okay, But
you're not talking about a mountain specifically a mountain, not

the interpretation of mountain, not the words that mean mountain,
but a physical mountain. Are you saying that that is
a construct of the human consciousness or of the universal consciousness,
and it's a construct of the human consciousness. Let's talk
about the mountains existed before humans, not as that appearance.

The mountain you see is a human mountain. It's not
the mountain of an insect with a hundred eyes. It's
not the mountain of a bat that experiences that mountain
as the echo of ultrasound. It's not the mountain of
a snake that moves through infra red navigation. It's not

the mountain of a butterfly that has fifty tho lenses
in its eyes that move like a kaleidoscope. I don't
know what the mountain looks like to a kaleidoscope. So
what is the mountain before it's perceived? Actually, what is
it from a scientific point of view? Which is inaccurate too,

by the way. So from a scientific point of view,
the mountain is atoms and molecules and force fields and
gravity and electromagnetism, strong interactions, weak interactions, the whole bit.
But that's also a construct for a mode of knowing
and experience, in this case a human more and of
knowing an experience. So before you can call that a mountain,

you have to experience it. How do you experience it
visually as a color, as a form, as a shape,
on the level of sensation. That's just hard, rocky edgy,
et cetera, which our words were giving. But without words,
there's an experience. What is that experience? And now the

physical world is an experience in waking state of consciousness.
As soon as I opened my eyes, I said, this
is a physical world. This is a physical body. But
close your eyes and there's no physical world. There's only sensations, images, feelings, thoughts.
Open your eyes and what is their color, shape, and form.

The only difference between this and there's sound pointing to
my phone and the desk is color. Without color, there's
no shape without shape, there's no form. So this shape,
this form and its interpretation is a human construct, as
the mountain, as is the Milky Way galaxy. Because when
you look at the Milky Way galaxy. What's happening in

your consciousness? Sensations, images, feelings, thoughts. That's it, and the
Milky Way galaxy and the body go together as a
perceptual activity. They're entangled. And that perceptual activity is actually
happening in a species of consciousness that we call human consciousness,
not in any other species. What is it before? It

is even the experience of other species, you know, other species.
In Eastern Resian traditions, we call them sentient beings because
they are conscious beings. Even a tree is a sentient being.
It's moving towards light, it communicates with other trees, etcetera, etcetera.
So each sentient being is actually constructing its own experience

of what we call the physical world. In real a
t there's no such thing. Now. Even our perceptions, which
we think are accurate, are totally misleading. So my perception
says the Earth is flat. Nobody believes that anymore. My
perception tells me the ground we are sitting on or
walking on is stationary. We know it's spinning a dissign

speech and hurtling through space the thousands of miles. Now,
my perception tells me, things are solid. That mountain is solid,
but I know it's even scientifically, it's proportionately as void
as intergalactic space. If I could see it as it
really is, it's here a huge emptiness with a few
scattered arts and spots and some random electrical discharges which actually,

when they are not observed, also disappeared into the emptiness.
So what's the universe made of? Nothing? Oh gosh? Okay,
on that note, we're gonna take a quick drink. What
is this nothing? We're going to come back and we're
going it's on our desk. Okay, be right back to

before the break. De pack just told us that that
everything is nothing. Basically, what you're saying is that outside
of our consciousness, outside of perception, nothing exists. There's nothing,
and it on a planet that we've never discovered. It
doesn't actually exist if we haven't perceived, If there is

no perception and no awareness, there is no existence. Is
that what you're saying? So, just to elaborate on that,
consciousness is not your personal property. So you don't have consciousness,
you are consciousness. You don't have consciousness the way you
have green eyes or dark hair or beautiful nose those

are not. Those are your possessions you think they are,
even they are not. They recycled us. But that's at
least you think you own them, all right. Don't consciousness?
You are an activity in consciousness. You are consciousness experiencing
a changing activity that you call the body your consciousness,

experiencing changing thoughts that you call the mind your consciousness,
experiencing changing feelings that you call emotions your consciousness, experiencing
changing perceptions that you call the physical body and the
mountain or the Milky Way galaxy. What does it bring
us to have that awareness? What it brings us, in

one word, is go beyond all thought. So meditation, yoga,
mindful awareness, self reflection, contemplative, self inquiry, transcendence, going to
ask if this is an emotion, who's having this emotion?
Where does it come from? And you will soon discover
that what we call emotion is just a modification of consciousness.

You don't see this as an abstract concept. You see
this as something that you that we can be in
touch with all the time, all the time. If you
realize that no system of thought, whether it's religion, philosophy, theology, science,
can give you access to reality. No system of thought

can give you access to reality. Thought is a human invention.
It's the symbolic representation of I am now symbolically representing
to you my internal world, and you are doing that,
and you are doing that. So language is the symbolic
representation of experience and experience raw experiences, sensations, perceptions, images, feelings, thoughts.

If you want an acronym for that, s i f T.
If you have any experience that's outside of s I
f T, let me know. There's no experience outside of
s I f T. The rest is a story, religious story,
theological story, philosophical story, scientific story. So you say in

Matter Human in your book, that we assign a great
deal of importance to everyday choices and that those are
our habits essentially, and you advise that we need to
sort of feel less entangled in habit. So I am
a hugely habit attached person. I like to follow these

patterns that I've set for myself that I believe helped me.
Why should I entangle from them? And how well? Some
habits are very useful as rituals. So I have the
habit we do yoga, I meditate. It is a certain
time asleep at a certain time, and there's a daily
routine that I follow. Those habits allow me, therefore not

to based my energy in thinking about those things which
are absolutely useful to me. But there are certain habits,
like reacting in a certain way to a person, you know,
you automatically have a automatic response. So the more you

practice being during the day, which I do, but which
is part of the tradition of yoga, is to take
moments to being choiceless awareness, which means no choice, just being.
And then you see that how you spontaneously choose things

in the moment that are evolutionary and joyful and surprising
and usually loving and compassionate and holistic and not violent.
Choice less awareness is the highest intelligence. But now you
view that with subtle intention. And subtle intention for me

means empathy, compassion, joy, equanimity, service, carma, yoga. Then you're
all set. Is there a reality outside of perception? Now?
Is there like Plato's ideal world? Is there something that
is not dependent on human perception butterfly perception, any perception?

Is there something the ultimate reality? Yes, infinite consciousness what
people call God. But God is a dangerous word these
days for scientists. So what you call God or in
minsolved or Allah or Brahman or non local consciousness or

infinite possibilities or infinite creativity or the force of evolution
which is happening by itself all the time. Now, I
have a different view of evolution. I don't believe in
making this stake reductionist evolution because I don't believe in matter.

I think evolution is guided by consciousness, and we are
a species of consciousness, just like the branches of a tree,
the branches of a single trunk, and so too, our
consciousness is one branch of infinite versions of consciousness. So
today's physicists are talking about multiple universes and multiverses and

infinite versions of you. In fact, the religious book from
Caltech by Sean what's his name, the head of physics there,
talks about multiples. And that's the latest theory in sciences,
that we're part of the infinite versions of you, infinite universes,
on and on. But they could only exist in consciousness.

They can't exist anyway it else. So what is council?
You say, is there a reality, ultimate reality outside of
our perception? The answer is it's not available to us.
Unless we transcend our perceptions. That's the value of these
great traditions that said, once you transcend, you know, just sorry.

The religious experience so called religious experience, virtual experience. Only
three things. One is transcendence. You you know your existence
as not being in space time and causality independent of
space time number one. Number two the emergence of what
people call platonic values truth, goodness, beauty, harmony, love, compassion, joy,

equanimity because you've touched the source. And number three um
loss of the fear of death, because you know, death
happens to an experience, not to you, and it's happening
right now. You know, every thought is on and dies
as soon as it occurs. Every perception is actually a

is a snapshot. I look here, snapshot, look here, snapshot
in between there's awareness. Okay, the snapshot is in time,
but the awareness is not in time. Why is it
not in time? Because it has no shape and has
no color. It can't be seen, it can't be heard,
you can't touch it, so it's formless. If it's formless,

then it must be infinite. Because anything that has formed,
whether it's a molecule or a galaxy, it's not infinite.
Only the formless is infinite. So once you get in
touch with your formless being, which I do, by the way,
every night, I die to the world and I die
to this lucid dream in the vivid now that we

call physical reality, transcend two that infinite being, which you
can call God or whatever, but is only that. Everything
is a modified expression of that. Everything that you can
think of, perceived shift, sensations, images, perceptions, thoughts is a

modified expression of the infinite as that finite experience. Once
you get there, there's no death, there's no birth. These
are human constructs for ever changing experiences happening in what
we call timeless now because now it's not a moment
in time. By the time you hear these words, they

don't exist. Okay, So anything that you experience is in time,
but that which is having the experience is not in time.
When we come back, I want to talk about ways
that we can get to where you are as we've

been talking about. I guess ultimate reality and awareness of that,
and I want to just dig down and figure out
how we get there, because I think most at least
Jill and I are not not there yet. So what
can we do on a daily basis to bring us
a little closer to that awareness. I'll do my best

to make this practical and understandable. But if I don't,
then forgive me. We'll stop you is what stop? Okay?
Right now, there's a very popular word in our culture,
and that word is yoga. Okay, So let's just look
at that word what it means. Yoga is related to

the English word yok So when Jesus and New Testament says,
my yoki is easy and my burden is light, he's
talking about yoga. Why because he says, I am the
father of one. I'm in you, you are in me.
That's yoga. It's Yoga means kidding in touch with the
source of existence, and by existence, anything that exists, anything

that exists. Existence means it exists however we interpret it.
So yoga is not a system of thought. Now, traditionally,
yoga is divided into four aspects. The yoga of being
which is meditation, but transcendence. Okay, Now, you can have

yogas that's called rad yoga, royal yoga, um, the yoga
of being through meditation. But also when you practice regular yoga,
you're in fact practicing mindful awareness. If you're doing it properly,
you know, you're watching your breath, you're watching your movements,
you're not interpreting them, you're feeling them, and you're getting

to the source of all experience ift, the source, which
is pure consciousness, infinite possibilities. First, yoga and all the
regular yoga you we do every day, you whether it's
bran um or or physical yoga, going to a studio,
learning about um focused awareness. That's all the royal yoga.

So there's no wrong way to be doing yoga. You
can do the hot yoga class, you can do it
with adaptations. Yoga simply means being aware of movement without
interpretation and feeling that part of the body where you're
having sensations. And the complete program of yoga, which is

about thirty pastures plus and it doesn't matter hot yoga,
whatever yoga. There are standing postures, lying pastures, twists, forward bends,
backward bends, and sitting postures. What is it about those
forms themselves? I mean, is there's something inherently connected to

the universal in those postures rather than just going to
the gym and moving your body. And yeah, it's very
specific because moving your body is a very s cardiovascular experience,
and lifting weights is a nice experience for your muscles.
But techniques like yoga or tai chi or Chi gong
or martial arts, they're very specific in making the mind

and the body a single coordinated, unitary, unified experience in consciousness.
So ultimately they all lead to the source number one,
number two yoga and its methodologies, including the other martial
arts and mind body practices. They stimulate a nerve in

the body called the biggest nerve, which is the tenth
cranial nerve, and it's just the healing nerve in our body.
So the tenth cranial nerve actually moves from your midbrain.
It interacts with your facial nerve, with your laryngeal nerve.
It influences the eye movements, It influences the tone of
your voice, facial expressions. Its influences heart rate tradeability. As

it goes through the diaphragm, it goes to every organ
in the body and cause itself regulation in the body.
It's the nerve that has been ignored. It is a
parasympathetic nervous system because we all focus on heightened conditioning
through the stimulating the sympathetic nervous system. But now people
are showing even through devices, if you stimulate the biggest nerve,

it brings healing. Now, a complete set of yoga pastures
stimulates every single branch of the vaguest nerve, including the
nerves that are going to the hollow organs and the
solid organs in the body, including your microbiome, which is
the two million extra genes in your guard. So this

is the healing nerve. And so yes, that royal yoga
we're talking of heals. And by the way, remember the
word healing, wholeness, bringing you back to the source, wholeness
of experience, not mind the separate body, separate perceptions, separates
all one unified experience and conscious That's the royal yoga. Second,

yoga love. If you just make love, and let's called
back to yoga and many other variations of that, would
love being the dominant reason for doing anything and everything.
It was funny when you were talking about what we
teach our children. That's what I felt. It skipped over.

The very first thing you teach your children is that
you love them. Yeah, but even before you love them,
even before you love them, they are already beings. Full
of wonder, curiosity, no interpretation, joyful smiling unless the wet.
So you're not hungry, but being is essentially joyful. That's right, Yoga.

Now love accelerates that because love not just as a sentiment,
but the ultimate truth that the source is one and
I and you. When we are at the source, we
are inseparable, and that is love. So love is unity
consciousness in this framework. Okay, it can be a sentiment,

it can be an emotion, it can be a story,
but in its ultimate truth, it's the truth at the
heart of creation that the observer and the observed, the
lover and the beloved, the sacred and the profane, the
sinner and the saint are all the same, being infinite.
So do you look at everyone with that that acknowledgement.

So if you're practicing yogi, you do, They asked the
Lai Lama. Does he hate the Chinese? No? I just
hate what they did. But do you love some people
more than other? People? Like your voice? It's natural to
love with those that are close to you more. But
you know, when you get to my age and you're

preparing for death, then you love everyone really us. Okay,
how are you preparing for death. Are you preparing for death?
You're looking well, preparing for death. But I think what
you're saying, Ever since I became conscious of the construct,
death is magical. It makes life possible. Um. You know,

any biologists will tell you that there's a thing in
our body that we call apoptosis program cellular death and cancer.
What we call cancer is the loss of memory of death.
When cells forget to die because they forget they are
part of a wholeness. Cancer cell is on a personal

quest for immortality and what it does ultimately it destroys
its source, the host, which is what we're doing is humans.
We are destroying the ecosystem of which we are an
expression as a result of this subject object split and
the superstition of materialism, the superstition of matter. So but

when we are stund love and its ultimate truth, and
to Gore said the ultimate truth at the heart of creation,
then love is yoga, and then compassion, empathy, all of
them equanimity piece by products. So what's the third element?
Third element is reflection, inquiry, looking at your intellect and

realizing how unreliable it is. Okay, this third yoga is
called the razor's edge because the more you know, the
more egocentric you get. And in fact, the more you know,
the less you know. A specialist in any field is
ignorant of the rest of what is in that field.
And we know I know that as an indo chronologist,

I don't know what a cardiologist knows, or cardiologist doesn't
know what immunologist knows. So all our knowing is actually
a form of ignorance. And when we start to question
or knowing, it said, what is it that wants to know?
What is it that wants to know? The truth is

my perception. The truth is my interpretation of perception the truth.
And as you practice this yoga called the yoga, which
is the razor's edge, you ultimately give up and you
surrender do not knowing, And yet you write, you that's

just an element of knowing, an element of insight. But
in the end, if you do not address the mistake
of the intellect. And what's the mistake of the intellect,
I'm an ego bound identity squeezed into the volume of
a body in the span of a lifetime speaking to

other ego bound entities, and that is a mistake of
the intellect. You know, the intellect tells me that I'm here,
you're there. The ground is stationary, things are solid. So
the yoga of the intellect is to go beyond the
intellect and surrender to mystery, because there's no cause for

existence or awareness of existence that you and I can
decide on. We asked, I asked physicists. So you believe
in the Big Bank, right, what caused the Big Bank?
What was there before the Big Bank? Oh, there was
no time, There was no space. So what caused something

that had no time, no space to certainly emerge into space?
What happened in the Plank epoch, which is turned to
the power of minus forty three seconds? When they were
there was no time? Okay, there were no laws of physics.
How did it take four thousand years? Or cosmic inflation?
Mathematical precisions. So we can have this conversation, you know,

when you can really get down to this, everybody agrees
there's is no cause that can be ascribed to existence
or awareness of existence other than we don't know. And
that is the yoga of the intellect surrender. Ultimately, there's
no reason to solve the mystery of existence, just be

in it, and that the fourth yoga and I'm done
Karma yoga, which means do what needs to be done,
don't worry about the results because they're left to the unknown.
Practice karma yoga, you experience what it's called lightness of being,
no anticipation, no regrets, no resistance. Just how do you

know what needs to be done? I just I mean,
how do you say, do what needs to be done?
If in this moment what needs to be done is
give full attention to this conversation. It doesn't need to
be done. I mean maybe that's perception, right, I mean,
that's and doesn't need to be done. It doesn't need
is a subtle intention that moves consciousness into activity. Being

is one extreme and doing is the other extreme. In
between is feeling and thinking. So the yoga has embraced
all of that being, feeling, thinking, reflecting, and then doing.
And when you do all of this, you are. When
you do all of this, you're like Frank Sinatra. Do

B do do without without being sounds like fun Without doing,
there's no being, So it's do B too, B do
And that is not a human and that well, meta
means beyond and human means the conditioned mind. The conditions
story every story that has been told has not only

been recycled, but it has been improved upon. So you
know from mythology, actually the story started with gossip, then mythology,
then religion, then theology and phil see no science. But
they still stories, so and they keep getting better in
their revised form in that they expand our awareness. But

all stories are provisional. Only the source of stories is absolute,
and that is you. Oh gosh, this is mind blown exactly.
Thank you. I think I feel like I need another
year to sit and listen to this arctics, as I
said before, and I'm obsessed with what is existence? And

I've come to conclusion this is the biggest mystery and
we should be grateful that it's a mystery. If you
solid it, what would you do? Well, We're grateful that
you're here to elucidate it somewhat for us. Thank you
so much. Thank you. And to listen to more of
deep Pack, go to his Daily Breath podcast that's a
shorter one or Infinite Potential, which is longer form. You

can also connect with Deepak on Instagram at Deepak Chopra,
on Twitter at deep Chopra, or at his website deepe
dot com and he's also got a new a new
community feature. You can text him at seven four four
four five eight three eight, and then you'll regularly get
messages back directly to you from Deepak again. That's nine

one seven four four four five eight three eight. I'm
gonna get on my phone to right now. The Road
to Somewhere is recorded in New York City. Make sure
you share, subscribe, rate, and review us, and let us
hear from you. Where are you on your journey? Connect
with us on Instagram and Twitter at pod to Somewhere.

Email us at road to Somewhere at iHeart media dot com.
Special thanks to our producer Alicia Haywood. Thanks for joining
us on the Road to Somewhere. Available on the I
Heart Radio app, on Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get
your podcasts. Potash

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