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Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books

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Hi Dharma Friends!

I'm just fresh out of a 11-day mind-blowing and humbling dark room retreat in southern Mexico.

A couple reminders came to mind:

-Humans need very little to survive (food, shelter, clothing [optional; I spent the entire time naked!], and medicine).
-All beings suffer. Just having a body and having to eat and drink and pee and poop creates so much suffering in the world.
-My parents are just ordinary human beings, and nobodies special. They deserve my greatest respect and service. I owe my life to them.
-Time and space are simply constructs of the mind. 
-The idea of somebody doing something is a fundamental delusion. 
-Having a teacher's constant guidance and support and encouragement is priceless.
-Nobody becomes enlightened or achieves anything.
-The spiritual path (for me, at least) is letting go of a "spiritual self."
-There's nobody to be angry with, all beings are results of their karmas, and if they could choose more wisely, they would.
-I'm just an ordinary human being.
-I really dislike pain and discomfort.

Of course, all these are just intellectual understandings, considering my practice is still quite self-centered and pleasure-seeking.

During the retreat, there was an idea coming to mind repeatedly, and that is to create audio books of dharma books (starting with A Guide to the Bodhisattva's Way of Life and Autobiography of Empty Cloud) that are free on the internet. 

Anybody a whiz at recording audio and video for youtube? I'm so out of touch with technology...How do I make something into an mp3 or an mp4? What is the bare equipment I need? What programs should I use to edit if necessary?

Many thanks and may all beings be happy!

RE: Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books
Answer
5/18/16 6:46 AM as a reply to Chi.
its nice to have one's mind blown.

one of the references on your list of epiphanies reminded me of this shinzen young talk where he names the "two fundamental directives" of human existence as: 
1 - "Comfort of the Body" and
2 - "The Mind Can Find a Solution"

As far as audiobooks are concerned I have no experience in creating them but if you are not aware of dharmaseed.org you should take a look at their VAST offerings in audio dharma.  The actual founder of this was Bill Hamilton who was one of the main teachers of Daniel Ingram and Kenneth Folk.

Your post also reminded me of stories I had heard while living in Guatemala of a certain indigenous people, living in the Orinoco highlands of Venezuela who choose a child at birth to be a shamen and keep that child isolated in a woven teepee like structure until, I believe 12 years old.  This, theoretically, reduced much of the social programming and allows that individual to be more open to the inner world.

Tip: don't try this at home.

tom

RE: Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books
Answer
5/18/16 12:55 PM as a reply to Chi.
Chi, your idea about providing readings of audio books is very sweet and one I've considered from time to time. I think all you'd need is a good microphone, a quiet room, and a nice reading voice (important ;) and a free place to store those files (e.g. soundcloud, youtube). Please keep us posted if you decide to do this, I'd be very interested.

RE: Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books
Answer
5/18/16 10:10 PM as a reply to Chi.
Chi:
What programs should I use to edit if necessary?


For free audio editing, many people use Audacity together with the LAME encoder (for making MP3 files).

RE: Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books
Answer
5/18/16 11:13 PM as a reply to Small Steps.
Small Steps:
Chi, your idea about providing readings of audio books is very sweet and one I've considered from time to time. I think all you'd need is a good microphone, a quiet room, and a nice reading voice (important ;) and a free place to store those files (e.g. soundcloud, youtube). Please keep us posted if you decide to do this, I'd be very interested.
Thank you for your encouragment Small Steps.

I've realized if I'm not going to be a monk, I want to do something that allows me to move freely with little possessions and little worldly responsibility. I want to do something as close to the Triple Gems as possible, and I think reading the words of great masters is a way to be of service in the world. Eventually, in order to do this full time, I'll set up a website with a searchable database and a place where people can donate....

These are my thoughts at the moment.

RE: Post-Dark Room Retreat Insights, Creating Dharma Audio Books
Answer
7/1/16 10:08 PM as a reply to tom moylan.
hi tom: i thought you might be interested, i think it is the Kogi tribe you are describing   https://kogicolombia.wordpress.com/
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hi chi:  i really enjoyed your account of your dark retreat. i posted an extract.  https://darknessretreats.wordpress.com/altos-pages/benefits-of-d-r/

you are welcome to write a guest post if you would like to.      https://darknessretreats.wordpress.com/

there is an open forum on the Benefits of Darkness Retreating.  it would be really enjoyable and helpful for others to post your experience.   https://darknessretreats.wordpress.com/f-o-r-u-m/

cheers from alto