This week’s topic is: Discover Meditation and How to Overcome Anxiety with Kevin Ellerton
I am so excited to have my very special guest, Kevin Ellerton, who is the Founder of Meditation Magazine, a global publication available in thousands of stores in 20+ countries around the world. Listen in as Kevin shares his personal spiritual journey, his interpretation of what guru means to him, his experience being a father and a bonus meditation led by Kevin himself.
- How Kevin founded Medic Meditation Magazine…
- We share our personal spiritual journeys…
- What guru means…
- Overcoming anxiety…
- Kevin’s experience being a father to his little girl…
- Be led through a short meditation with the founder of Meditation Mag…
About Kevin Ellerton
Kevin is a tiny organism on a mote of dust hurtling through space. He’s also a meditation teacher, author, activist, entrepreneur, founder of Meditation Magazine, evil capitalist, and loving husband and father. Kevin loves to help people realize their true selves and find unshakeable joy, bliss, happiness, and equanimity through meditation. He recommends checking out Meditation Magazine, linked below.
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Kevin Ellerton’s Interview
Other Podcasts you may enjoy!:
- Meditation Tips & Overcoming Anxiety!
- How to Help Our Kids Thrive Through Meditation with Emily Fletcher
- How Mindfulness and Meditation Can Improve Your Sleep Health with Eve Lewis Prieto
- Embracing Meditation With Jeff Warren
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Note: The following is the output of transcribing from an audio recording. Although the transcription is largely accurate, in some cases it is incomplete or inaccurate. This is due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
Kimberly: 00:01 Hi Beauties. Welcome back to our Monday interview podcast, where we have a very special guest for you today. His name is Kevin Ellerton and he is the founder of meditation magazine, a beautiful global publication available in thousands of stores in over 20 countries around the world. And I have to say Kevin and I go into his story, his personal story of discovering meditation, overcoming anxiety, how fatherhood has changed him. And it’s, it’s so touching. It’s so personal. It’s so beautiful. It’s so relatable. And Kevin also leads us through a very special breathwork practice today.
Fan of the Week
So it’s a goodie and I can’t wait to get into today’s interview, but before we do, I want to give a shout out to our amazing fan of the week. Her name is Sun. Shine, and she writes love Kimberly. I’ve been following you since 2012. I love watching you grow and listening to your positive energy.
Kimberly: 00:58 You were so inspiring and I love your endless positive knowledge from the bottom of my heart, Sun. Shine. Thank you so much. My love for being part of our community for your wonderful review. It truly means the world to me and big, big virtual hug. Can’t wait to connect further with you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
Please leave a review on iTunes
My loves for your chance to also be shouted out as our fan of the week. Please leave us a review on iTunes today. It is just an amazing way to support the show. And I thank you in advance from the bottom of my heart. You can also screenshot your review and email it to email@example.com with two L’s, and we will send you our self-love affirmation mini course, our program for free, and you will get it. You’ll get access to it right away. So check it out while you’re over there, please be sure to subscribe to our show and that way you don’t miss out on any of these interview podcasts, any of our Thursday Q&A podcast.
Kimberly: 02:02 And so, yeah, subscription is a great thing to do right at the top of the show. I also want to mention that we are in our pre-sale period and my new book. You are more than you think you are practical enlightenment for everyday life. So please, if you have not yet checked that out as well, head over to mysolluna.com after this show where you will get the show notes for this show, and you can also get all the information about our amazing presale campaign. If you pre-order a book today, you will get the first few chapters of the book today. So you can start reading immediately. And if you get two or more, um, copies, you will get the first few chapters. You will also get invited to our looped event, our live meditation community event with questions and more, and you will also get free access to our new course beyond fear, awakening, freedom to live your best life, which I have to say is pretty awesome. And I teach part of it, hubby my hubby for the first time. So it’s extra special. All right. So many amazing things happening in our community, including this interview right here, right now with the amazing Kevin Allerton. So let’s get right into it.
Interview with Kevin Ellerton
Kimberly: 01:13 Kevin, I’m so excited to chat today. Wow. I love your Buddha behind you. And I’ve got, um, you know, my, this is a place where I meditate a lot. Is that your meditation seat exactly where you’re sitting right now?
Kevin: 01:52 This is one of my meditation seats. I have several around the house. Yeah. I get this Buddha poster in Boulder, like about a year and yeah, I like to keep this type of thing around the house. Like every, so often I just look up at it and it reminds me that whatever is going on in my life, it’s fine. It’s like, okay, I can be here. Yes, yes. Yeah. When I see his face and just like sitting there in that, like, you know what I mean? Yeah.
Kimberly: 02:22 I think we all need those reminders in daily life. I have a lot of, um, different objects and different, uh, you know, images around as well because we have our time when we meditate and we set and then there’s times where life gets crazy, like the in-betweens. And we want to make sure that we keep tuning back into that, to that peaceful place, to that, you know, center that’s always available to us because sometimes, you know, we get pulled so much even, you know, people like you and I who do meditate on a regular basis, it’s easy to get caught up sometimes. Isn’t it?
Kevin: 02:55 Yeah. Yeah. All I all the time, all the time. That’s every day, you know, it’s like a, it’s a constant practice. It’s people. A lot of times people think that, you know, you’re, oh, you’re the founder of meditation magazine. You must be always like chilling at peace. And it’s like, well, you know, we have some struggles. Like we have to, we have to constantly be like running to keep up with our ever-growing bills as we expand. And there’s, there’s all kinds of stresses of life, no matter where you are, who you are, you know, everyone has that.
Kimberly: 03:27 Well, thanks for keeping it real. It’s true. Sometimes people say that to me like, oh, you’re talking about this stuff. You must be calm all the time, but it’s, you know, we’re all in this, you know, human experience, we’re all in this daily struggle of life. And so it’s important that we, um, you know, we have tools and we have practices and we keep going back to them over and over again. Um, so I’m really interested in Kevin, you know, we’ve chatted before, but, and you’ve asked me about my story, where I started backpacking and how I got to where I am, but I don’t really know much about your story. I don’t know. Um, you know, if you were traveling or you, you grew up spiritually or, you know what, without getting too broad here, what what’s, what’s your deal, Kevin? Where did you grow up? How was, you know, what was your connection to spirituality like or meditation as a, as a child, you know, up to know? How did you know, how and why did you found medic meditation magazine? That’s a big question. So maybe we’ll, we’ll break it down. Tell me about your, your beginnings first. Let’s go there.
Kevin shares how he found medic meditation magazine
Kevin: 04:28 I love the question. I’m going to, I’m going to skip through some of the beginnings, cause there’s, it’s a, it’s a, it’s a 36 year story at this point, which sounds like a lot to me. I don’t know. But uh, other people telling me is not that much, but when I S like when I was a kid, I, I guess I was kind of like, uh, I guess I was kind of a deep kid. I was raised as a religious Jew, so Orthodox and, uh, on long island in New York, uh, like modern, Orthodox family. And, uh, I, I guess I never really connected to the religion in the way that was like a spiritual way connected to it in a religious way. So like I went to, I did all the laws. I went to the synagogue all the time and I prayed and I, I even ended up in rabbinical school in Jerusalem. So like, I was going really hard, but, um, the spirituality side, I never really tapped into that. I never really felt connected to anything. Like I heard, you know, God, they talk about God and it, but it was always a concept to me. You know what I mean? That’s something that I connected to and like felt
Kevin: 05:41 So I guess when I was like a baby, maybe I was doing it to please my family, or I, you know, when you’re a little kid, you don’t really know anything else. So you just go with what your family is doing. Um, and that’s just like normal, sorry, I’m going to dismiss the notification on my Alexa, Alexa dismiss computer dismiss notification.
Kimberly: 06:01 So we will edit that out. No, no biggie,
Kevin: 06:06 The phone is away, but the, the co the Alexa still here. So as a kid, um, I was just doing it because that’s what I was taught to do. But, uh, I, I didn’t realize that this was spirituality at the time, but I had these very deep dreams and I, I had these dreams that I was, you know, waking up in the dream and I would be going about like a whole life in the dream. And then I would wake up again and it actually, it freaked me out. Like, I, I never really knew what reality was. And, um, yeah, that really freaked me out. And it made me like, wonder what real life was. If I could keep waking up in a dream. Maybe this is still a dream. I remember when I was a kid, I saw a TV show. I don’t know if it was [inaudible] or somebody like that, but it was, it was one of those types of people walking through a field, talking about spiritual awakening, like being interviewed about spiritual awakening and saying that it felt like he had woken up from a dream.
Kevin: 06:59 And like his whole life had been a dream. And I really connected with that, but I, I was so into the Jewish religion that I never really went into that. I kind of just thought, okay, this is religion. This is what like, is the truth. And then at some point I found myself in Jerusalem in rabbinical school and like 19 18, 19 years old, um, and actually teaching other students about Judaism and things in Judaism. And I, I always liked science. So I decided to teach about science and Judaism and how they work together. Um, and, uh, at the time
Kimberly: 07:35 I never thought about that connection. What kind of science?
Kevin: 07:40 So there was this book, uh, called, um, Genesis and the big bang by a guy named Gerald Schroeder, where he basically, um, was claiming that, uh, if you use Einsteinian relativity, you can show that the 15 billion years of the universe that we know of right now is actually the same exact thing as the 6,000 years or so that, um, the Bible says is the length of the existence. You know, like when, when the world, the universe was created.
Kimberly: 08:11 So it’s mathematical a bit.
Kevin: 08:13 Yeah, exactly. So the thing is that I had really like, based a lot of my, like faith on that book, um, based on the idea that like science and my faith went together. Um, but when I was teaching it, I actually was doing the math and I realized that he had just like used Constance. I don’t know if, uh, I guess basically constant is a number that you insert into an equation to make the equation work. Um, and that those can be used sometimes, but they can’t be used to prove a theory. Um, so when I found that I actually contacted the guy and, and he basically didn’t have an answer for it. And I had this crisis of faith, uh, where I realized that I didn’t know what I thought. I knew that was a turning point. And I realized that I thought I knew all these things, but I, I never really examined the assumptions that I w that under, under low, underlied my belief under lay my belief, you know, how to say that. Um, and basically what I found was some, I found enough, um, evidence that I might faith basically broke in what I had previous believed previously believed. And, um, the rabbis at the school, uh, I had been talking about this with other kids, but the other students and the rabbis and the rabbi said I was becoming a dangerous influence to the other students, the other students that they couldn’t talk to me anymore. And
Kimberly: 09:37 Poking too many holes. You were looking too deep.
Kevin: 09:40 Yeah. So they, they basically ex-communicated me is the, is the technical term because, you know, they told everybody they couldn’t talk to me. And I ended up back in the United States in college here in New York. Wow. Um, that whole thing, basically the faith had given me this belief that I was going to live forever in some way, you know, in, in, in heaven. Right. Like, uh, that, that after this life that it would not just disappear. I wouldn’t just be nothing. It wouldn’t just go away. But then when I lost that, then I was in this extreme depression and existential despair, I guess you could call it like, Yeah, what’s the point of anything if it’s only this and like, then we die and then it’s nothing anymore. So I did a lot of drugs in college. It was mostly psychedelics like mushrooms and stuff like that. And it, it went, it got kind of dark. Um, but, and, and I got kind of, I guess I was kind of going out of my mind. I was like pacing around the room, muttering to myself, like that type of going out of my mind. And, um, one of my,
Kimberly: 10:50 Your family think at the time, were you sharing with them your existential crisis
Kevin: 10:55 Or they didn’t like it?
Kimberly: 10:56 I’m sure they were worried about you.
Kevin: 10:58 Uh, they were more, they were more upset that I was, uh, I had been somewhat disrespectful toward the religion. At that point, I’ve come to a balanced point where I’m now respectful of everyone’s beliefs and, you know, try to be, uh, try to help everyone in their own way and love everyone in their own way. And, uh, everyone is entitled to whatever they believe in. Uh, everyone’s beliefs are valid. That’s something that it took me a while to realize.
Kimberly: 11:22 Yeah. And one thing Kevin, I want to say, is it, didn’t, it doesn’t sound to me as, you know, third-party you asking questions and looking deeply doesn’t seem disrespectful. That’s one of the things that, you know, my Guru Yogananda says is don’t just accept, you know, blindly, don’t just accept dogma. You have to test it for yourself and see how, you know, you are experiencing and how you’re feeling. So it doesn’t sound like you were being disrespectful. You were trying to really deeply understand.
Kevin: 11:51 Yes. Well that the internal was not disrespectful. I think that the, uh, the way I handled it at the time I was 19, I was like a firebrand, brash teenager or whatever. And I was like, Hey, everyone, you have to stop doing this religion. They did. Yeah. They did take to that. Well, so, um, that’s why I went to college and I went dorming over there to get away from my family a little bit. Yeah. It was the dark time for me. And, uh, one of my friends in college saw that I was really struggling and sort of going out of my mind and she took me aside and she said, here, I’m going to show you something. And she like sat down, like in meditation posture. And she’s like, here, sit with me for a few minutes. And she guided me on the first meditation that I had ever done.
Kevin: 12:38 And it was not like, it wasn’t the type that I actually do anymore. It was a guided visualization about a waterfall or something I don’t even really remember. But, um, it, for a moment I got past the anxieties and all the thoughts that were going around and around in my head that were driving me crazy that I thought were like reality, but we’re actually just thoughts. And then, um, I started seeing like, okay, maybe I’m not going to go crazy. Maybe there’s ways to out of this. And I heard a radio commercial at one point for this ladies, uh, cassettes, I guess it was at the time called, uh, Lucinda Bassett. I forgot the name of the issue. Her name was Lucinda Bassett. And she was basically teaching these mantras of like how to transcend anxiety. And one of the lectures was called thoughts, only thoughts, like to realize that your thoughts are just thoughts.
Kevin: 13:33 And if you’re having a panic attack or anxiety attack, you just repeat that to yourself. Thoughts, only thoughts, only thoughts. And when I started doing that, it like broke the cycle of the whirlwind of thoughts. And that probably was another turning point for me that I realized, okay, I don’t actually have to have anxiety like this. I, the thoughts are just thoughts swirling around in my head. I can, I can grow. And, uh, I had been using drugs for that to stop the thoughts. I had a lot of weed though. It didn’t really stop the thoughts, but I was like, this meditation thing could save me money on weed. So
Kimberly: 14:14 You don’t have to take something it’s coming from inside of you. Yeah,
Kevin: 14:18 Exactly. That was kind of like my Jewish brains, like, oh, I could save money on weed. I’m going to do more meditation.
Kimberly: 14:25 I love
Kevin: 14:26 It. That’s, that’s what I started doing. And, and, you know, I went from this really, really dark place, like where I really thought I could end up in like a mental institution or something like that. Like, I was going crazy to a place where I felt at peace, happy, productive, like, uh, I wasn’t waking up at 3:00 PM anymore. Like I like ha actually having a life. And, um, I started traveling after Jen. Oh, that Siri, she, uh, she heard something that sounded like her name and just pushed her off to the side. Um, I started traveling, I traveled through Costa Rica. I started a business in New York and, uh, wall street. I actually grew up business called Blackstone properties, which if you Google it, it was a pretty big thing. Like we had five offices, 90 real estate agents. I was only 22. We were in the news like newspapers a lot. And it was all because of the meditation. Like I had gone from non-functional to very happy and very productive in just a couple of years
Kimberly: 15:31 At, at that point, um, in your journey, because you went from being religious or, you know, in, in, in, uh, in, in the Jewish sense to, you know, feeling, um, that, you know, that crisis you mentioned, and then you, and then you say, oh, well, if it’s just this, when you started to get into meditation, as you’re describing, and you started to notice the thoughts at this point in your journey, who are you connecting to as, as the real you like, who was observing the thoughts? Were you starting to, um, feel this expansion? Did you start to feel again, there was something more that would go on or you still on aware of?
Kevin: 16:09 That’s a great question. I, I didn’t, I didn’t really see past the, um, the relief from the anxiety at that point. All I saw was I’m getting sharper. My, my, my anxiety has gone away. I feel happy. I feel productive. I hadn’t really gotten to the spiritual aspects yet. Um, I think that that really started when I, um, randomly opened a book called the power of now and in a bookstore, I think it was borders or Barnes and noble, one of those. And, uh, this was around the time that I was running the company in Manhattan. And I read some paragraph in the middle of the book about just being here now, basically. And suddenly the whole space opened up in a way that I had never experienced before. Like I looked up and instead of just seeing bookshelves and books and people and the things that I wanted out of all of those things, suddenly I was seeing the space, the light streaming in, through the window dust particles and the light beams.
Kevin: 17:14 Like it was, it was a really powerful moment for me. And that was also a turning point that as I read that book, I started really getting deeper into the spirituality of it. And I ended up deciding that I wasn’t going to continue with the company that I had built. I left it to my partner, uh, because I felt like real estate brokerage was not my purpose in life. You know what I mean? It wasn’t like, I didn’t want that to be my life. So I moved to Thailand and I lived in a Buddhist monastery for some time. Uh, and
Kimberly: 17:52 In Thailand I spent a lot of time there as well,
Kevin: 17:54 You know, Surat Tawny in Thailand. Yeah. Do you happen to know what Swan Moke?
Kimberly: 18:02 Um, I don’t, I’m not sure I’ve tried, you know, I spent a lot of time there’s some of the names are a little bit funny. I do remember that area.
Kevin: 18:10 This is a, a Buddhist monastery. That’s like, um, you know, the robes of the orange robes and everything, but they, they, they do have like an English program sort of, they have a monk from England and among, from Poland that whatever speak English and I was trading my English lessons with the other monks for meditation lessons. And I, at one point was in this 10 day silent meditation at that monastery. And I had this moment where I was, well, the first seven days, basically I had thought I was going to be peaceful. And because I’d been meditating for a few years, I thought it was going to be great and like super blissful. But these first seven days actually turned out to be very difficult for me. I was worried about a whole bunch of things. Uh, this girl that I had met that I had left behind because of going to the monastery and things like that.
Kevin: 19:03 I, all these things were, were going in my head and I was super stressed out for seven days. And I, I was so confused by that because I thought, Hey, this is like supposed to be blissful. This is like, my mind is supposed to be silent. And on the seventh day, I just realized that there, there was no way that I was going to get to bliss and silence the way that I was doing it. I thought I actually just gave up. It. Wasn’t like an intentional thing. Like, oh, I’m going to give up now. Like, it wasn’t like that. I just literally just stopped trying. I was like, I give up. And that moment of giving up suddenly all of those stresses that I had been having fell away. And I was just, I was just in this bliss, this like an ecstasy that I had never experienced before, even in that moment in Barnes and noble with the deck are totally book, which was powerful in its own way. This was beyond anything. Yeah. But not even a thought based epiphany. It was like a, an experience epiphany of like, this is possible.
Kimberly: 20:07 This, it sounds like, do you know Dr. David Hawkins? Kevin
Kevin: 20:10 I’ve heard of him, but I haven’t really followed his
Kimberly: 20:12 Work. You should check it out. He, well, he writes this really profound book that I referenced a lot called letting go. It’s like, when you like, go on the other side of all this, like tension, everything we build up is that lightness, it sounds like you’re describing, is this like, sort of effortless? Just expansion.
Kevin: 20:31 Yeah, it was, it, it was incredible. And I was walking around. I, you know, people say walking on clouds, right? That’s like, uh, I always thought that was just an expression. Like, that was just some silly expression, but I had, my feet had been hurting the previous days, like from walking around barefoot on the gravel and stuff. Those last three days of that silent meditation, my feet were no longer hurting, walking on the gravel. I was, it felt like I was floating and I know I wasn’t floating, but like, it felt like I was like walking on clouds. It was very, very strange. And I, during that three days, that last three days of the, that meditation, I, I realized that I had never really found a purpose in life that felt more real to me then spreading that and then giving that to other people, because if it was, it came kind of back to that, that feeling that I had as a, in, after I was religious, where, Hey, if it’s just this, then what’s the point.
Kevin: 21:33 And it was beautiful, but I also felt like it’s just this just in me. And I was like, okay, there’s still billions of other people on this planet that don’t have this and we can, I can spread this. And then it will be so much bigger and so much more beautiful and it would go beyond me. And I felt like to give, to, to give that to the world would be a good use of my life. It would be the best use of my life that I could think of. So that, that’s what really started me on the whole meditation magazine journey. Like I started interviewing gurus, um, for a documentary. I was writing books. Um, I haven’t published any of the books yet, but I, I should, uh, one of them is called awakening. I think it’s really good, but I gotta, I gotta do something it’s on the list.
Kevin: 22:24 It’s way down the list right now, meditation magazine is like, like, you know, it, it is the list at this point. Like we have so much going on with meditation magazine that it makes it hard to do other things, but it is a beautiful outlet for doing what I’m trying to do. Basically, it had started with Giovanna that my wife, who I met, um, in Miami at some point, uh, as I was traveling, we’ve been traveling around the world except for the, during the pandemic. But before the pandemic, we were traveling around the world for years and we were trying to spread the wisdom of different spiritual teachers from around the world. So we were doing like videos with people like Ahmad [inaudible] and, um, uh, monks in the Himalayas and people like that. We were just traveling around and I started reading your book, by the way, uh, your, your Rishikesh story. Uh, we, we love Risha cache. Um, we interviewed a bunch of like, uh, the people at the [inaudible] there. And, um, I don’t know if you know, Bonzie Baba, he’s the guy that plays the flute by the, um, by the, the Ganges river by, okay.
Kimberly: 23:32 I remember him, but I probably passed him when I was walking around
Kevin: 23:37 And like rom JeWella or Lockma Angela, or somewhere over there.
Kimberly: 23:41 Kevin, when you were, when you were starting to go deep and, and understand you had this experience, did you personally start going deep into one path or with one teacher, or did you start learning about many different practices? You know, that was sort of the foundation for, you know, cause we all go different ways, right? Like for me, you’ll see in the book, I really, I really connect deeply to the Kriya yoga teachers to Paramatta, to yoga Nanda. And I wa you know, I go real deep into that. Um, so what was, you know, what’s your, your, your, your spiritual journey, your personal journey now?
We share our personal spiritual journeys
Kevin: 24:16 Yeah, that’s a great question. Thank you. Well, when, when I started first, it was like our totally. And I was like, totally as my group, then I started finding other people like rom Doss and Alan Watts and people, and really getting into their, their videos and writings and stuff like that. But, uh, as I started traveling, when I ended up in Thailand, for example, then I was doing this Buddhist meditation and I was like, okay, the, the Buddhist at that monastery said, this is the meditation. You know what I mean? They were like, this is the original meditation from the Buddha. Like, there’s, you know, this is the one. So when I was doing that, it was it’s called [inaudible] and it’s, it’s like, basically just watching the breathing and stuff like that. And I was like, okay, this is the meditation. So then I was going around teaching that meditation in the U S after, after that experience of, oh my God, like, I need to spread this.
Kevin: 25:14 Then I went and I started a program in, uh, Florida international university and Miami children’s hospital and places like that, I was like, starting these meditation programs, teaching this specific meditation, like this is the meditation. And then in Miami, where, where I was living at the time I met Giovanna and my wife and she had be here now tattooed on her wrist. That’s how I knew that she was the one I was like, wow. Um, I actually had thought about having that on my, on my arm also. And she did it. So I thought that was cool. And when I would meditate with her, I’d be like, okay, let’s do this. And let’s watch our breath. And she didn’t like meditating with me because she had her own meditation practice that she had, you know, a guru she had, um, it was a side Baba, Baba.
Kevin: 26:01 Um, so she had seen a picture of CIBA as a teenager and broke down crying. And that was her grew from then on. And for me, I was like, I had come out of this religion and the whole dogma thing and the whole like hierarchy thing. And I was like, oh, I don’t believe in gurus. Like gurus are BSL. Put it that way. And, um, she didn’t like that. And so we actually had a lot of tension in our relationship, but for years because of that, but what I found was she started opening me up to other paths and to realize that this one Buddhist path, wasn’t the only way these other ways. And she had her own meditation practice that was working for her and it was beautiful for her. And she was the one who really dragged me to India because I had been in other places, but I’d never been to India. And she was like, we stayed in an Ostrom and almost Ostrom and it blew my heart open in a way that I love all the love. Exactly.
Kimberly: 27:04 Well, and Kevin, if we could pause there for a second, because sometimes I think this word guru is misused in the west. And I think sometimes people think of, you know, Colts or they just overused the word. And really in sunscreen it’s it’s grew is, you know, grew room means one that takes you from darkness to light. And you know what I personally believe, and I think you feel the same as that. There’s another one, right? There’s the one creative intelligence. There’s many paths up the mountain, so to speak, and this divine intelligence is omniscient. And so the gurus are, um, you know, as rom Doss says that the doorway, the doorway into connecting in a deeper way with the one. So we may resonate with different teachings, different, you know, paths, different types of prayer, different types of meditation, different grooves, whatever it is. Um, but it’s, it’s all, you know, ways back to the, to the one. And, um, that’s why I think it’s an important, we recognize there are many ways, but we’re talking about the one, you know, sometimes I think when I talk about, um, Indian, um, culture Hindu you’ll get stuff, Kevin people are like, oh, they have thousands of gods. It’s like, no, no, no, no, no. There’s the one there’s Brahma, just like I was raised Catholic. Right. There’s the one. But within that, there’s different aspects. We can connect you, but there’s just the one.
What guru means
Kevin: 28:20 Exactly. And, you know, I it’s, it’s amazing. They use the words, paths up the mountain. That’s what our documentary series was called, like
Kevin: 28:29 Called paths up the mountain, Google it on search on YouTube for paths up the mountain. You’ll find our interviews with these gurus all over the world. Um, and, uh, yeah, you’re right about the word gurus, you know, like I noticed that in your book that you had mentioned that in our recent guru issue, like, uh, the one that was previous to the powerful women, one, we have this article it’s called what is a group. Yeah. And we get into the whole, you know, the etymology of the word about the guru, but also about, you know, following blindly and how that hurts. Not just, it doesn’t just hurt the people who are the followers. It also, I think hurts the gurus because follow them blindly and think of them as perfect. They’re putting them on a pedestal. And when you’re put on a pedestal, it I’ve realized that from, you know, my own experience from working with meditation magazine and things like that, when people put you on a pedestal, it makes you feel like you have to be a certain way. You know what I mean? And thankfully, a lot of real gurus like realize that that’s happening. And so they, they try to play with it and try to not get like, let it inflate their egos. But sometimes it does, it is harmful to people it’s harmful to the grooves that are worshiped because they have this constant anxiety of having to uphold an image. You know what I mean?
Kimberly: 29:46 I do. I, I feel, you know, I feel personally there’s a lot of great teachers. I don’t think there’s many true gurus personally, you know, with yoga Honda, it was like the last of that Kriya yoga lineage. And, um, you know, there’s, there’s some great grooves that come in like Jesus, Buddha. I think there’s a lot of teachers, I think in the modern day, a lot of teachers, a lot of people will flock to them, but you know, if any of them are even, you know, it’s even touching their ego, I think, you know, the GRU is, is, you know, one with God. So there’s still on this level of humanness, you know, with us. Um, but it’s, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s different. I think it’s different. I don’t think there’s many, many gurus, many true,
Kevin: 30:30 You know, for, for this issue, the issue that we interviewed, Deepak Chopra and sod grew, um, we called it the guru issue. So, and we got a lot of interesting, um, you know, resonance with the internet for that. Uh, some people saying like, oh, we love these guys. And some people being like grooves are BS, you know, like having that whole conversation. But I think it did spark that conversation in a way. But one of the people that I talked to in the course of making this, uh, was Ragu Marcus. Uh, he’s like he was an old friend of rom dos and I was talking to him about, uh, is there such a thing as a fully a hundred percent realized enlightened person? You know what I mean? Like, is that, does that exist? Um, or are we all just humans who are doing our best and maybe add on some somewhat different wavelengths and some, some people have more of, you know, presence more of the time and being in the oneness more of the time and other people are maybe a little bit less conscious most of the time. And my personal theory on it is that we’re all humans and that like everybody is just maybe on somewhat different wavelengths than some people are on such beautiful wavelengths that they, that a lot of people feel enlightened by them. But raga disagreed with that. And, uh, actually Deepak, I asked him that too, and he disagreed with that too. Uh, and Roger has said, uh, that he met, um, Maharaji, that’s the, uh, the grew of rammed us, Carly
Kimberly: 31:57 Baba
Kevin: 31:58 Buh-bye exactly. And that he was always in non-duality that’s what Rocky said that he was never in duality. And Deepak said the same thing about neem Karoli Baba, and he’s, he listed off a couple of other people that he thought were also in that, in that zone where they were just constantly in non-duality. So all I can say is I’ve never met one of those, uh, it’s possible that they exist, but from my, I guess I have this skeptical streak in me that is like, um, I guess science is kind of my core, uh, epistemology where I sort of think of the world through science. And so if somebody tells me that there are some humans that are basically like fundamentally different from other humans, it makes me skeptical. So it’s possible. I’ve never seen that.
Kimberly: 32:51 So Kevin, if I, if I could, um, offer my opinion here, I would say that, um, I think that the course of history, and this is, you know, from reading the Gita over and over again, and really, um, going into some of the, you know, the Vedas and the teachings and the, the teachings of Kriya yoga in particular. I think that, um, we, you know, the, the whole Vedic calendar talks about, we go into like the Kali yoga in the dark ages and different time periods. And I think that God spirit universe, whatever word you want to use sends down, um, teach, you know, these great gurus to help bring us out of the darkness. And it’s not, it’s very, very rare. So we could say, you know, Buddha, Jesus, Krishna, yoga Nanda, and I think these souls are, are realized they’re in samadhi, they’re in oneness all the time.
Kimberly: 33:41 And I think those teachings last for, you know, from, well, it’s been a long day, the teachings of Jesus have been with us for a very long time. Um, I think that there’s many teachers that come that try to shed light on the teachings. You know, for instance, having written a book with Deepak, I will say that he’s a, he’s a teacher. A lot of people can relate to his teachings. He’s definitely not a guru. And he would never call himself a guru. In fact, I’ve been with him in New York, you know, walking around and people will ask him questions. And he’ll say, I don’t know, like, he’s like, I’m not a guru. He’ll say that. You know, I really don’t know. So for me, like my personal opinion is, um, you know, there’s these, these, these beings that come down to show us the way.
Kimberly: 34:22 And I also think science as great as it is, is still some, it’s still a construct of the limited human mind. And as we go beyond, we start to learn more and more about quantum physics and the multi universe and things that, you know, our mind doesn’t understand. I’ve had some amazing neuroscientists come on this podcast and they’ll be the first to admit, we don’t know that much about the brain actually. So I think it’s hard to understand the indefinable, the omniscient from this framework of science, um, specifically there’s there’s limits. Right? So anyways, that’s, that’s my opinion that there have been some, a few groups that have come down just to show the way the different faiths and different traditions. Um, but they’re very rare.
Kevin: 35:05 Yeah. Well, I, I D I don’t think I’ve met any of those, but we can’t really know. I guess my, um, aside from science being my fundamental epistemology, I also, uh, have this respect for my Havurah. I don’t know if you know, my Havurah, he was like an, he was the originator of the Jain religion. You lived around the same time as the Buddha historians once thought that he was the same person as the Buddha, but then they realized that he actually lived like 60 years before probably learned from him. Um, but my Javiera, his main philosophy was that everything in the universe is undefinable at a certain way, because the universe goes beyond our, our minds. Whenever we try to express something or say something, or even think something, it never really gets to the truth, because it’s just a reflection of the universe.
Kevin: 36:03 You know what I mean? So basically the idea is that we can’t really know anything in a completely finite sense in, like, when we say anything about the universe, it’s always just from one perspective and that there are, there are all these other perspectives. And from, from your perspective, from my perspective, we can see the same universe. It’s kind of like that, that analogy with the elephant, with the, uh, the blind people, trying to figure out what the elephant is. It’s like, we’re all seeing the same universe from different perspectives, and we might describe it differently, but we’re seeing basically the same thing,
Kimberly: 36:36 All parts, all different aspects of the one. And it’s, you know, it’s, it’s a kin to what Lao-Tzu says in the Dow they chain the Dow is that w w that which cannot be named, yes, there’s not really description for it. It’s this, that’s where, you know, we S you know, I say connecting to the true self, connecting to the divine inside of us is an experience. You can’t really put it into words. You can’t just study it. It has to be that experience. Um, speaking of which Kevin, I wanted to, I want to ask you, uh, uh, going a little bit of a different direction here. And it’s the experience of being a father, as you’ve gone on this journey, you’ve created your seeker, you found your wife, you’re creating meditation magazine. You’ve gone on this journey, and now there’s this next step other staff, which I know for me, like totally blew up in my heart when I became a mother. Can you talk about, you know, it’s a little girl you have.
Kevin’s experience being a father to his little girl
Kevin: 37:31 Yes, yes. Amelia sky.
Kimberly: 37:33 And how old is she?
Kevin: 37:35 She’s seven months now. Oh my goodness.
Kimberly: 37:37 He’s a little little one. So you’re a new, a very new father. Can you, can you just share with us a little bit about how that experience shifted your awareness, your, your life, every everything?
Kevin: 37:50 Yeah. Wow. I remember when we were in the hospital and Giovanna was laboring for 25 hours and the baby was not coming out when they had to rush her into a C-section, it was, it was really hard. It was really stressful, you know, and I was sort of freaking out because she was in like this emergency surgery and I was just sitting there, like outside the room. I couldn’t do anything. And this was not how we thought it was going to go. So I was kind of like doing my breathing. I was trying to like calm myself down and be present and just enjoy the moment of, Hey, my, my baby is about to be born. And when the nurse brought me this little baby, this little new beam and put her in my arms, I looked into her eyes and she looked into my eyes.
Kevin: 38:42 I didn’t know that they could do that at that point. You know what I mean? And I was like, my, I just was, it was one of the most powerful experiences in my life. And like the words that you use, that it blew your heart open. Very, very similar experience. It was suddenly my life wasn’t just about me. It was, it was this, it was about this little girl that I was responsible for. Not just in terms of keeping her safe, but also raising her and making her into a good human being. I mean, she’s going to have her own obviously element here. She’s going to have her own responsibility for that to become a whatever human being she, she becomes. But that, at that moment, it was just like, my life will never be the same. And, uh, it was a beautiful moment. And it’s been like that. The rest
Kimberly: 39:37 Of
Kevin: 39:39 It’s been like that, like that moment has kind of has encapsulated for me the feeling of, of this whole past seven months, even though it’s exhausting. And, uh, like the time that she got sick was right before we released our recent issue, powerful women and in meditation. And I was responsible for getting that issue out by the deadline and she got sick and then I got sick. And then it was like a week of being sick with no sleep. And it was really hard. And there were those moments too. You know, those, those really hard moments require a lot of equanimity. And now, uh, like recovering from that. But every day when I see her and I see her little smiling face looking up at me, it’s the most beautiful feeling in the world. And it brings a smile to my face that there’s very few things in the world can, that can make me smile like that.
Kimberly: 40:39 There’s this, uh, there’s this power. I think children bring in such simplicity so much love. So pure. It’s just like being and looking at each other. Right. It kind of just pushes away all this stuff we think we need and the to-do list. And the busy-ness, it’s just this moment. Want to talk about the power of now looking right into the eyes of a child?
Kevin: 41:01 Yes, yes, exactly. That they’re completely in the moment because they don’t even have the brain structures to think about the future. I don’t know if they can conceptualize the past that they pretty much just have this, and it’s, it’s, it’s a, a baby as a teacher in, in, in their own way. Babies are teachers in their own way. You know, you were saying about gurus. I think there’s the word guru can mean a lot of things. And like you said, the etymology is, is a guru is dispelling of darkness. Um, but, and you could say, okay, guru is someone who only lives in non-duality and never lives in duality. I think maybe the closest that we have to that is babies.
Kimberly: 41:45 I think, I think day to day life. Do you know that science shows Kevin? I think it’s, I think it’s eight months or 10 months. I think there’s a little bit of contention, but they say that’s when the baby starts saying, you know, oh, me and Papa and table, before that they were in oneness. And before that they just, everything is just part of themselves. And so it’s very powerful to be around the energy of a baby. They say, it’s so healing to have the baby sit on the heart chakra because that baby is, as you said, living in this, this oneness and doesn’t see it. And then eventually of course, we, you know, we call the baby name, we say, okay, your this, um, and they start, you know, creating that duality, that separation. But for those first few months, they are swimming in the ocean of oneness. Yeah.
Kevin: 42:35 Wow. It’s really powerful. I think that’s part of why they make people smile so much and the baby and you kind of have to smile. That’s why baby videos are so popular on YouTube. Really people that are searching for those are actually looking for a guru videos wanting to see that non-duality
Be led through a short meditation with the founder of Meditation Mag
Kimberly: 42:53 Yes, they’re looking for that. Beautiful. Um, they don’t, they can’t put it into words, but it’s a vibration that can be felt. Um, so that, that being said, Kevin, you know, I think this is a beautiful segue. If, you know, as the founder of meditation magazine, you’ve been through many different experiences of meditation. I’d love if you would lead us through, you know, a short meditation, if you’re, if you’re up for it.
Kevin: 43:19 Um, so I, I was actually right before our podcast, I was doing this meditation that I often do. Uh, so I dunno if you know, Wim, Hoff
Kimberly: 43:30 He’s come on the podcast as well.
Kevin: 43:32 Oh, nice. Yeah. We, we interviewed him for one of our issues. I love that guy. He’s one of my favorite teachers of meditation in the world right now. And so he, he, he sort of popularized a form of pranayama that like breath work that, um, you could say it’s very similar to bellows breath, you know, pranayama. Um, and I’ve been playing with these different types of pranayama recently, uh, since, since our India trip. And, uh, I used to mostly do mindfulness meditation where you just sit and watch your breathing, and that’s a great type of meditation that you should totally do every day. To me, it’s meditation is like a tool belt, like there’s different kinds of meditations and you can use them in different situations. Um, but for a quick meditation, I really love pranayama. Would you want to do a breath work with me? Sure. Yeah. So I, right before our podcast, I was playing with a whim Hoff style meditation, and they actually sort of adapted it. And this is like the first day that I’m doing this meditation. Do you want to try it with him?
Kimberly: 44:28 Yes, absolutely. Let’s do it.
Kevin: 44:30 So basically here’s how it goes. Um, so it’s the rapid deep breathing. So it it’s called hyper ventilation, basically. It’s, it’s the, one of
Speaker 3: 44:39 The things that is part of the Wim Hof method. And some of the pranayama is you’re taking very deep and very rapid breathing. So like,
Kimberly: 44:50 As your nose out
Kevin: 44:51 The mouth you could do in, through your nose, out through your mouth. Uh, one of the things that I like about Wim Hof is that he basically adapted it in a way that you don’t have to really do it either through your nose or your mouth. You can choose what you want to do it. Um, personally, I actually like doing it in, through the mouth, out through the mouth. Um, depends on the depends on the situation and the time and how I feel. Um, but you can do it either way if you want to do in your, through your nose, out through your mouth, or doesn’t really matter, you can do it however you like. And so you’re taking these deep rapid breaths for maybe 20, 30 seconds. And then, so if you were doing the Wim Hof method, you would exhale it all and then hold the breath out for a long time. So, um, this adaptation that I just started trying today is instead of that long exhale at the end of the rapid breathing, you do an oath and you’re owning it out, you own out the air. So it’s just like, instead of a long exhale, like it’s a long home, like, um,
Kimberly: 45:56 Oh, I
Kevin: 45:57 Like that. Yeah. So it kind of adds the home into that cycle. And then after the own, you take a deep inhale, hold that for 30 seconds, 15, 30 seconds or so, and then you go back into the rapid breathing. So let’s do two cycles of that. I think each cycle has maybe about two or three minutes. And so will take us about five minutes to do two cycles. Is that work? Wonderful. Okay. Sounds good. All right. So just a follow along with the breathing, you may feel dizzy. You may feel it’s as good as being a seated or lying down position. You may feel tingly all over your body. That’s good. That means that you’re getting a lot of oxygen. You’re getting all your nerves are waking up. That’s that’s, what’s supposed to happen.
Kimberly: 46:39 So if anyone’s listening to this, Kevin does it, um, should they be sitting upright in a meditation posture or a flat,
Kevin: 46:46 You can do it either way. Uh, so upright will be, I mean, either way is good. I find laying down can actually get you into a deeper state, but sitting up is also very powerful and keeps you a little bit more lucid. I should also mention if people have a heart condition, if they’re pregnant or if they have respiratory issues, they should. Yes. This one right now. Okay. Thank you. Okay. So let’s, let’s start with the deep, rapid breathing. Just follow along with me. And then when, when I do the own follow along with the own and hold the breath out, and then we’re going to take a deep breath in together, right? So let’s start with the rapid breathing.
Speaker 3: 48:22 [inaudible]
Kevin: 48:23 No, all the breath out for a moment. Okay. When you can hold the XL any longer, take a huge deep inhale, Filling the body with air and oxygen. We’re going to hold this for 15 to 30 seconds. You may feel tingling or dizziness. That’s okay. That’s part of the process. And now we’re going to go back into the rapid breathing
Kevin: 50:01 All the breath out, feel the body empty of air. When you can hold the exhale any longer, take a huge deep inhale, filling the body with air and oxygen and sit, feeling the body full of air here. And now in the present moment, just holding that in breath and letting your body relax and sink into the present moment, feeling the entire body, whatever it is that you’re feeling right now, if it’s tingling, if it’s busy, whenever you’re feeling, just feel it be here with your body. This body that is continuous with the air around it, feeling the air on the skin, Feeling the space inside the body, the space that underlies all of the structures of the body, realizing that we are sitting here part of this infinite universe. Multi-verse just being here with it in this moment. When you feel ready, can slowly blink your eyes open coming back into the experience of seeing the world around you and in front of you. Yeah. Being here in this moment, just seeing, feeling the body, hearing the sounds experiencing this moment of being at peace and one with the universe.
Kimberly: 52:33 Beautiful. Thank you so much, Kevin. I definitely felt tingly. I felt like I had to really like focus. It’s like be there to keep the breath out, to pull it in. And so it’s, I feel like it’s a really nice, um, almost like a, like a mini meditation. You could do this practice in the middle of the day. If you feel yourself too caught up in the senses and what’s going on just to bring it back in.
Kevin: 52:59 Oh, I do it all the time in the middle of the day between meetings, things like that. If I have a few minutes and I’m stressed out from something it’s like a reset for the emotion, it completely resets the emotions and gives you that little taste of bliss that you need to go into the next meeting or go into whatever it is that you’re doing positive and happy way.
Kimberly: 53:21 Wow. Thank you. And thank you for sharing something with us. That’s so practical and tangible. I think that’s a beautiful tool to share. Thank you so much, Kevin.
Kevin: 53:30 Thank you so much for having me on this podcast. I love your podcast. I’ve been reading your book. It’s super cool. Uh, and um, I’m just very happy to be talking to you. You got a good energy.
Kimberly: 53:41 Oh, thank you so much, Kevin. And thank you so much for sharing with us along the journey and just the work you’re creating to spread the bliss and joy. It’s so beautiful and it’s so needed right now.
Kevin: 53:52 Yeah. Thank you. And if anybody wants to learn more about meditation, you can check out meditation, mag.com. It’s like meditation magazine, but like shorter or you could check out Kevin ellerton.com. That’s my name. I have meditation courses on Kevin ellerton.com and meditation mag.com. You could subscribe to our magazine if you like our articles, or if you want to have something nice that you can kind of have in your house or in your office or something that will just remind you to be in the present moment, sitting there on your table.
Kimberly: 54:24 Well, I have to say it’s such a beautiful magazine. It’s really just the imagery. It’s very inspiring. It’s colorful. I respond to color very, very much. And I think it’s, it’s beautiful. Like you said, sometimes we want those little reminders and sometimes, you know, there’s just a lot of, um, media out there. That’s um, I don’t say it like a little bit darker. It focuses on things that are not right in the world. It focuses on disharmony to have something physical. I’m, I’m a big fan of, of physical things. I like physical magazines. I like physical books because I think we live in this physical world and there’s something very tangible to it. So, um, as you mentioned, Kevin, this is so great. Thanks for calling it out. Meditation, mag.com, Kevin ellerton.com beauties. We will link directly to these links in the show notes. If you head over to my selena.com, we’ll have it out there, more information about Kevin.
Kimberly: 55:18 So you can just come right in. I definitely recommend, um, the magazine and subscribing, which is such a nominal fee. And really just to have that inspiration, something you can pick up and passing those in-between moments, sort of, you know, scrolling on Instagram, you can pick up the magazine and get that little, you know, that little hit of, of inspiration, attunement, um, wisdom, um, just, you know, these, these little, these little guides through the day, keep us centered and it’s so powerful. And so Kevin, thank you again so much for putting this out into the world. Um, you know, the name of our podcast is, is feel good, which for me is about connection to the true self. So it’s all the ways in which we connect in which we support each other. And you are definitely doing that on your journey. And so thank you again so much for being here with us and for sharing your wisdom and your story. Thank you
Kevin: 56:13 So much thinking this is a wonderful podcast and I really appreciate your invitation. And, um, I’m excited to be working with you on also on the next issue of meditation magazine and the health issue, which we’re doing the interview with you tomorrow about. And I’m really excited about how that’s going to come out. I think, uh, the health issue is going to be really good for people who are wanting to find more, uh, health and holistic health. And you’re gonna, I think be a big part of that. So thank you.
Kimberly: 56:42 Thank you so much, Kevin,
Kevin: 56:45 Have a beautiful day.
Kimberly: 03:17 All right. My loves. Thank you again so much for tuning in. As I mentioned, please be sure to check out the show notes, my soluna.com. I’ll see you on social at underscore Kimberly Snyder. And please be sure to pre-order your copy of your more than you think you are? My new book today from the bottom of my heart. I know this one will benefit you the most in your life with much love and much gratitude. See you back here Thursday for our next Q and a show.