The Wisdom of Zero with Jacob Kyle (#169)

Jacob kyle

About the Guest

In today’s episode, Embodied Philosophy Founder Jacob Kyle is interviewed by Kelly Blaser for the 2024 Power of Meditation Summit. They discussed the role of the scholar-practitioner, the philosophical significance of “zero,” the important synergy of knowledge and experience, “reappropriating God,” and the necessary role of spirituality in the lives of queer people. 

Jacob Kyle is a meditation teacher, writer, philosophy educator, and the Founding Director of Embodied Philosophy. He holds an MPhil in Classical Indian Religions from the University of Oxford, an MA in Philosophy from the New School for Social Research in New York City, and an MSc in Political Theory from the London School of Economics and Political Science. Jacob is a student of Kashmir Śaivism scholar-practitioner Paul Muller-Ortega and is a devoted practitioner of the Śaiva-Śākta Darśana. 

Kelly Blaser is the founder of DharmaBridge and SomaPsychotherapy, and is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with an emphasis in Buddhism, Shaiva and Shakta Tantra, and Somatic Psychology. Her background in feminist movements and Latin American Studies and experience living in Central America opened her up to the extent that our inner struggles are reflective of systemic structures that promote domination and disassociation. Her work is to help others experience the infinite compassion beneath the chaos of life and to remind them of their true nature. Her programs and courses focus largely on the power of applying the dharma to one’s relationship with oneself and others. She helps people train themselves in meditation, mindfulness practices, and compassionate self-inquiry, so they can gain freedom from conditioned mind and open up to possibility. 

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In this episode, we discuss:

  • how the history of “zero” as a mathematical disruptive discovery reflects the way our contemplative sādhana both disrupts and inspires different forms of knowledge
  • the importance of studying yoga philosophy as a way to empower embodied experience
  • how scholarship should take seriously and employ experientially the embodied epistemologies of ancient wisdom traditions
  • what it means to let your subjective experience inform your practice without rejecting the knowledge systems of the tradition
  • the symbolism of Nataraja (the dancing Shiva) and how it represents the five universe functions of reality
  • the dance of revelation and concealment according to the Tantrik tradition
  • how organized religions have rejected gay and queer people, and how this necessitates a “re-appropriation” of God in queer-inclusive theologies and philosophies that are simultaneously informed by an understanding of wisdom traditions.

Quotes from the Episode

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