Welcome to Episode #4 of Fractal Friends. This episode is a conversation with artist and calligrapher Barbara Bash. She is a brilliant teacher of both communication practices and of meditation. She was also a student of Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche, who was very influential in bringing Tibetan Buddhist teachings to the West in the 70's and 80's.
Barbara can be found and contacted at www.barbarabash.com.
The conversation takes us on a deep exploration of both art and spiritual practice and the intersection points between the two. One of the recurring themes here is about finding the courage to slow down and let life show up and the various things that we discover when we do that. When we listen and open our eyes to the world, the world comes alive around us. As it comes alive we find that the world is reflecting ourselves back at us, and as we engage we also find ourselves mirroring the world around us. The internal and the external meet at some place and collapse into one. There is something profound this, and it was lots of fun to explore this with Barbara.
At the beginning of the episode, we talk about a scene that unfolds in Barbara's book True Nature: An Illustrated Journal of Four Seasons in Solitude. Here is that scene of water beetles eating a dead fish. She prefaces the images with these words:
I sit by the water's edge and wait.
It appears that nothing is
happening when I first arrive.
That's how impatience
If I stay in one spot long enough
the world begins to open.
We also talk about Barbara's decision to not enter a fabulously intricate mosque while on a trip in Istanbul and to instead make a study of these tiles. These can be found here in Barbara's visual blog, also called True Nature.
This episode also includes music by Steve Gorn. Steve is a virtuoso on the Bansuri flute. He is also a student of Chögyam Trungpa and is Barbara's husband. I hope that you enjoy his music. You can find more of Steve's music and information about him at his website here: http://stevegorn.com/.