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February 23, 2021 @ 7:30 pm
Being Ram Dass: An Evening with Rameshwar Das and Mark Epstein
Books & Books and Miami Book Fair present…
An Evening with Rameshwar Das
In conversation with Mark Epstein
(Sounds True, $29.99)
Tuesday, February 23, 7:30pm
LIVE via Crowdcast
Rameshwar Das, coauthor of BEING RAM DASS will join Mark Epstein, MD, psychiatrist and author, in conversation about the life and new memoir from spiritual teacher and cultural icon, Ram Dass.
Born Richard Alpert, Ram Dass was a prominent Harvard psychology professor who partnered with Timothy Leary in psychedelic research, and later traveled to India and met his guru, Neem Karoli Baba. Upon returning to the US with his new name, which means “servant of God,” Ram Dass became a pivotal influence on the culture with his groundbreaking book Be Here Now—a backpacker’s bible for a generation of spiritual seekers. In this new definitive memoir, BEING RAM DASS, America’s best-known and beloved spiritual teacher, Ram Dass, shares his life story set against the backdrop of eight decades of cultural transformation.
About the Book:
Set against a backdrop of nine decades of sweeping cultural change, Being Ram Dass shares this modern day luminary’s journey from psychologist to renegade Harvard psychedelics researcher to beloved spiritual icon.
Perhaps no other teacher has sparked the fires of as many spiritual seekers in the West as Ram Dass. If you’ve ever embraced the phrase “be here now,” practiced meditation or yoga, tried psychedelics, or supported anyone in a hospice, prison, or homeless center—then the story of Ram Dass is also part of your story.
From his birth in 1931 to his luminous later years, Ram Dass saw his life as just one incarnation of many. This memoir puts us in the passenger seat with the one time Harvard psychologist and lifelong risk-taker Richard Alpert, who loved to take friends on wild rides on his Harley and test nearly every boundary—inner or outer—that came his way.
Here, Ram Dass shares his life’s odyssey in intimate detail: how he struggled with issues of self-identity and sexuality in his youth, pioneered psychedelic research, and opened the doorways to Eastern spiritual practices. In 1967 he trekked to India and met his guru, Neem Karoli Baba. He returned as a yogi and psychologist whose perspective changed millions.
Populated by a cast of luminaries ranging from Timothy Leary to Elisabeth Kübler-Ross, Allen Ginsberg to Sharon Salzberg, Aldous Huxley to Alan Watts—this intimate memoir chronicles Ram Dass’s experience of the cultural and spiritual transformations that resonate with us to this day, a journey from the mind to the heart, from the ego to the soul.
Before, after, and along these waypoints, readers will encounter many other adventures and revelations—each ringing with the potential to awaken the universal, loving divine that links this beloved teacher to all of us.
About the Authors:
Ram Dass (1931–2019) means “Servant of God.” Born Richard Alpert, he was the founder of the Love Serve Remember Foundation and a cofounder of the Seva Foundation, the Dying Project, and the Prison Ashram Project. He is the author of the spiritual classic Be Here Now and many other books. Learn more at ramdass.org
Rameshwar Das is a writer and photographer who met Ram Dass in 1968. Ramesh has collaborated with Ram Dass on many projects, most recently as coauthor of Be Love Now and Polishing the Mirror.
About the Moderator:
Dr. Mark Epstein is a psychiatrist in private practice in New York City and the author of a number of books about the interface of Buddhism and psychotherapy, including Advice Not Given, The Trauma of Everyday Life, Thoughts without a Thinker and Going to Pieces without Falling Apart. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Harvard University.