April 19, 2017 :: SANTIAGO JIMÉNEZ


  • Becoming a magical person through performance anxiety purification.

  • Learning to love the regressive infant experience and letting Source re-parent you.

  • When a feeling of “loss of clarity” is merely another kind of clarity becoming more prominent.


Santiago Jiménez lives in Bogotá, Colombia, where he is a musician, guitar teacher, music studio owner + producer, and mindfulness teacher.

As a child, he created his own intuitive-style of meditation.

I’d get back from school, I’d drop my books and my bag, and I would lie on the bed and close my eyes. I got this sense of being really connected. Not doing anything; just being there. I didn’t have a name for this ritual, so I gave it a name: I was Being.
My mother would ask, what are you doing? I would say, I’m Being.
It was maybe a little weird for her.

As Santiago grew older, he found various formal meditation experiences and started to become a more intense seeker. As he practiced, he could see changes in himself and his life. These experiences also affirmed those states that he used to have as a little kid. Santiago has studied and practiced in native Colombian shamanic spirituality, integral/transpersonal theory, Shinzen’s Unified Mindfulness techniques, and Zen Buddhism via Genpo Roshi’s Big Mind system. In fact, Santiago became a Zen monk.

Yes, I’m a Zen monk -- even though I might not look like a Zen monk! I don’t even know how to wear my robes correctly. If a Japanese Zen master would see me, he might say, you’re not a Zen monk, you’re a disgrace! Luckily my teacher, Genpo Roshi, didn’t require me to do that.
Yes, of course I took vows and all that, but becoming a monk, at the heart, was an acknowledgment that my life is really about these teachings and the dharma.

Throughout our interview, as Santiago described both practicing + teaching meditation and practicing + teaching music, his embrace of “the path” as a way of life was tangibly clear.

The way I see it, the form may be different but the essence is the same.

His latest passion is trying to combine two disciplines of teaching music and teaching meditation.

When I play music, I experiment with bringing in different mindfulness techniques. I try to be clear of where my attention is when I’m playing. It’s such a complex activity. There are so many things involved. So I’m trying to get more clarity on what techniques to bring.
Shinzen has been an inspiration for this current inquiry: How do I teach music, like playing guitar, in a way that incorporates insight training? There are quite a few of these kinds of programs around, but they’re still vague in structure. In Shinzen’s words, they’re not inspired by the spirit of science. I’m trying to work on that. My students are my guinea pigs!

Santiago also experiments with teaching both Genpo’s Big Mind process combined with mindfulness techniques inspired by Shinzen’s Unified Mindfulness.

Last year I led a three-day silent retreat in which I combined these two things. The Big Mind process has the capacity to quickly give powerful insights and experiences. And then Shinzen’s techniques can be used to maintain solid practice. This is a very powerful combination. Meditation methods are evolving as we as a species and culture evolve, too. It’s interesting what Genpo is doing, and what Shinzen is doing. It’s a very rich and interesting time.

Enjoy a taste of Santiago’s music and practice in life herehere, and here, along with the Facebook page for Integral Center Colombia, which he co-founded. He’s still working on websites for his meditation and music teaching offerings; we’ll update here in the future when those web sites are available.

Emily BarrettComment