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July 18, 2005

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Bravo!

To all who believe that salvation lies in another human being:

The following may be somewhat hard to accept, especially for the die-hard faithful Sant Mat and RSSB believers, who may chance to visit this site and who get so far as to read the comments. I am sure they will likely do as they usually do, and remain closed-minded in their self-imposed tunnel vision and rigid dogmatic beliefs. Yet this is what will separate the wheat from the chaff, the true seekers from those who merely want some supposed mystic, "saint", or savior to magically rescue them from their plane of worldly existence, and carry them up to some imagined higher heavenly abode. Sadly, such people waste their entire initiated lives believing and relying on a faulty premise which has no basis in spiritual reality. And the really sad thing is that all along, they have the real answer, the real truth, the divinity, the treasure of peace, knowledge, bliss, and freedom right within their own Heart, their own consciousness and being. The sad thing is that they have been willingly duped into thinking and believing that their salvation, their liberation, their ultimate fulfillment will be gained by following another very human being. This premise could not be farther from the real truth of the matter.

Why?

Because what appears as a multitude of separate individual beings, is really an illusion which stems from ignorance. No being of consciousness has ever been, is now, or will ever be, separate or apart from totality. This totality is also refered to as the One Self, the Atman, Brahman, Buddha nature, the Ineffable, God, the Great Spirit, and the Tao, etc. This totality is unborn, non-dual, and infinite. Of the nature of perfect peace, pure awareness, everlasting bliss (no sorrow), and unbounded freedom. This totality is the Heart and nature of all manifest beings. Nothing exists apart from it. It is not in a particular place, plane, or realm. All phenomena, dimensions, space, time, and mind, are conditional dream-like appearances within the primordial pure Awareness which is this totality. Therefore, no seemingly "other" being exists in reality. Only the One Being, the One Self, exists for all eternity. That being the case, there is no possibility or necessity to rely on another apparently separate being for one's spiritual salvation, enlightenment, and liberation. The one who seeks such, is the very same one who is none other than that One Self. All that is needed, is for each and every conscious being to accept, and to abide in and as their own true nature, the One Self, which is perfect peace, ever-lasting happiness, and spiritual freedom. The only purpose of an apparently "outer" Guru, is to reflect and direct one towards the discovery, awakening, realization, and abidance as the One Self, which is the "inner" Guru. All other considerations, beliefs, philosophies, teachings, gurus, masters, and organizations are simply unecessary obstructions and impediments to the pure dharma of Self-realization and one's abidance in perfect Self-knowledge.

As a neophyte initiate (3 years "on the Path"), your comments are fascinating. My understanding is that Sant Mat is not a religion, but a philosophy and way of life to help one reach "totality." I thought satsangis were encouraged to be open-minded and tolerant of others, regardless of faith, nationality, or political belief(although this current republican regime does get me going!) I'm under the impression that we're not supposed to follow or chase Master, but, instead, go inside to find our "inner" being or guru.

Is it the Sant Mat teachings you object to, or do you think the growth of RSSB is causing "organization" to occur, and people to lose sight of the teachings?

Anyway, the comments are great "food for thought;" it's always good to hear/read other's views.

My mantra is: "Live life your way -- your inner voice knows what's right for you."

There is some hesitation to comment upon other commentators comments, in as much as this is Brian's Church of the Churchless web-log, and it seems more appropriate to offer comments which are related directly to the subject matter of his postings. But since the previous commenter made a mention of "totality", apparently in reference to my previous comment, here is a brief response:

Commentator wrote: "My understanding is that Sant Mat is not a religion, but a philosophy and way of life to help one reach totality."

Response: Sant Mat and its followers do not like to think of it as a "religion", but rather a "science". But the simple fact is that it is clearly a particular theistic philosophical belief system, which includes a rigidly defined method of practicing mantra and meditation. It also includes a strong emphasis on personal devotion and sunquestioning surrender to the spiritual authority of its leader, who is referred to as the "master". These elements comprise what is commonly defined as a religion, or perhaps more appropriately a cult. The only difference between a religion and a cult, is the size of the body of adherents. Since Sant Mat has tens or hundreds of thousands of followers, it could be considered to be a minor religion.

Regarding Sant Mat being a "way of life", I don't think that is a correct assumption. In fact, Sant Mat makes a point of telling people that they do n ot have to chage their way of life, except for 'rules' about diet, sex, and daily meditation.

Regarding Sant Mat being a "way to reach totality", I would have to say that Sant Mat does not mention "totality" anywhere that I know of. The specific goal of Sant Mat is something which is not really clearly defined in the literature, except for a general idea of reaching the higher spiritual plane referred to as "Sach Khand". To my knowledge about Sant Mat, which is quite extensive, the focus is not on the awakening of real Self-knowledge, or realization of one's own true nature. The entire focus is placed upon repetitive mantra meditation, visualization and devotion to the form of the master, and seva. There is little or no orientation or any discussion about the One Self, Atman/Brahman, and the sadhana of Self-inquiry (Atma-vichara)leading directly to Self-realization. Sant Mat is much more dualistic, theistic, and concerned about inner subtle plane cosmology, guru-bhakti, and mantra meditation.

Commentator wrote: "I thought satsangis were encouraged to be open-minded and tolerant of others, regardless of faith, nationality, or political belief

Response: I suppose they are, but most of those who I have met or observed, and that is a fairly large number, are NOT open-minded or tolerant. As a matter of fact, most of the satsangis I have seen among the most narrow-minded, judgemental, un-sociable, intolerant, spiritually un-informed, and un-enlightened people around. I am sorry to have to report that, but that is my honest experience.

Commentator wrote: "I'm under the impression that we're not supposed to follow or chase Master, but, instead, go inside to find our "inner" being or guru."

Response: If that is so, then why do so many satsangis run around acting as if "the master' is God himself ? I have heard what the RSSB authority says, but I do not see that in practice. Furthermore, Sant Mat does teach "going inside", but not to realize one's true Self. The whole emphasis is upon an inner/outer dichotomy, where one is supposed to dissociate from body, and meditate upon shabda to experience and travel through subtle planes to reach a supposed higher spiritual plane beyond the causal plane. This is all very dualistic cosmological mental projection. It has absolutely nothing to do with the direct realization of Self-knowledge, which is true enlightenment and true liberation. If one studies the teachings of the true Sages, one will begin to understand the difference.

Commentator wrote: "Is it the Sant Mat teachings you object to, or do you think the growth of RSSB is causing "organization" to occur, and people to lose sight of the teachings?"

Response: If you are asking me, then I would have to say BOTH. I object to the teachings because they contain too much irrelevant, dualistic, and conceptual dogma. I object to the organization because it is a huge impediment and obstruction to an individual's Self-realization. The whole thing could bve done away with, for the betterment of all concerned. All that is necessary is a true Sage, and the clear and direct teaching which will lead one straight-away to their discovery and realization of Self-knowledge, which is true spiritual enlightenment and liberation. Organizations have only one purpose --- and that is to perpetuate the existence of the organization. Period. The Truth does not need an organization. The Truth is the Heart of every being.

Commentator wrote: "Live life your way -- your inner voice knows what's right for you."

Response: Well that is certainly a good way to go. But I would have to say that "your way" is of your own true Self, and not by following the "Sant Mat-Radha Soami" way.

I loved every point of your "rebuttal," shall we say, particularly, "Religion is for those who are afraid of going to hell; spirituality is for those who have already been there." Oh my. *claps*

Oh, and it's really nice to hear that you've found Taoism and Buddhism so inspiring, as I'm taking Asian Philosophy next semester!

After giving up on RS because well at first I grew bored of my intelligence being insulted with the same repetitive format for years and secondly I began a different and effective meditation system.

I think, now the underlying factor amidst all "in it" or "out of it" pseudo cult/religious/spiritual systems is freedom and wanting it in one whatever form.

I think (as I have done) we can talk about why, what, how of RS until the cows come home but we have to beneath this do our own homework as to if it's right or wrong. As stated above I feel it is about freedom. In the west, if you live in a well industrialised commercial environment, you are exposed to a large facet of the world at your fingertips. If you are inhibited from this environment either via a system like RS or other means, practical ones like family or abusive spouses or groups and organisations you are part of, your freedom will be dampened and suppressed.

I think RS is a system totally created for the Punjabi world and is difficult to fashion effectively in the west. If you go to the Punjab and see the village environments you'll find preaching of the guru is akin to an Indian form of giving love to Elvis Presley.

You see it works in the climes and attitudes of an Indian system because that is where it was created and formulated. It is not formulated for the west. For all the acts of immoral behaviour I have seen at Satsang Centers that my nearest and dearest atheist buddies wouldn't dare think of, I believe we're looking at a breakdown in the system. Kaboom.

I'm in a totally different system now where I nourish and develop through my own experiences and my meditation is better. It's not a secluding system as it embraces all individuals and doesn't label you as an us (RS) and them (outside world) mentality.

Spirituality is about fitting into your environment, in balance and working from that. Going against your environment appears unholy and ungodlike.

Plus Brian, your posts are interesting but extremely long. I fear in my sneakers and the size of my scrollbar decreased to micrometer length when I load up your page. Not that I don't want to read it but I don't have the time. Could you please, with the blessing of the Gods do a lunchtime version?

Kindest RS :o) Regards

Dear dear Brian, I am so happy that my comments spurred you on to heights of industrial-strength musings. I was surprised that you chose to rewrite and somewhat rethink your earlier reply to my original post, which I wish I had saved. You seem to have had a change of heart while retracing my reply. I do not change my position nor my words one little bit. Because it is what I know, and not merely what I think or feel.

And in rewriting I fear you made me look shallow, while you come off as the big bad bear berating a spiritual buddy--hold me back. I will accept your comments not so much in the spirit that they were given but in the way that I need to not react to them.

I like your last line because it is not only amusing but it is sooooo true. Yup, been to hell and don't want to go back there.

For those who are following Buddhism as a path I have only one thing to say...it is dead as a doornail as a path. You can use it tenets of meditation and practice for warmup, which I did for ten years, and you can read their wonderful books on the subject of death and dying which I also did, but you can't get too far inside with its hairsplitting, which I also tried. Like it or not my friend RSSB is the wave of the future.

It is practiced as a religion by many. That is due to the confusion of Bhakti yoga versus Sound current yoga, they are not one and the same. The path of love and in some ways Buddhism is one -- which for many -- is a line of least resistance. IT is a karmic path for those who follow it, nothing more. It means that you have worn those ochre robes before or maybe worn them while we all traisped through the woods of India behind the beautiful Buddha (who is still beautiful by the way). Take them off, they will do you little good. Buddhism as a path just like Judaism is no longer viable.

I stand by my reply about your dealings with RSSB. Love you too and your Sound bites.

Netemara

BEAS SATSANG, AND THE MODERN WORLD.

The following are some constructive points concerning Radha Soami Satsang Beas in the modern world.

THE POWER OF THE INTERNET.

When Gurinder Singh became Satguru of RSSB he tried to exert some control over the organisational aspects of the movement. One of these was an attempt to "forbid" Satsangis accessing the internet to see anything good, or bad about RSSB or any other shabd yoga sect. This was arguably an unwise move simply because information cannot be controlled by anyone, or anything. The internet is a part of life whether we like it, or not.

SOME PROBLEMS WITH THE OFFICIAL HISTORY OF RSSB.


The RSSB presents it own version of RS history. Though undoubtedly many other shabd yoga sects recognised, or unrecognised would contest its views. There are a number of points to made about the RSSBs version of its history.

1.Just before Shiv Dayal Singh died he left a Will in which it is quite clear that he did not have a master. He was born "almighty" unlike the RSSB claim that this was possibly not the case.

2. From the Will Jaimal Singh was not commissioned to undertake the work of mastership. Dayal Singh instead chose his wife Radha Ji who in turn insisted that Rai Saligram should be the Satguru of the time.

3. Saligram, or Huzur Maharaj introduced the Name Radhasoami as being like the Sound of highest Spiritual Region. He further claimed that it was higher than those known to the masters of the sant tradition. Dayal Singh himself also apparently accepted this notion towards the end of his life. He had been teaching the original sant mat tradition, and initially used the Five Holy Names rather than the Holy Name of Radhasoami.

4. After the death of Huzur Maharaj a Central Administrative Council, or CAC was set up. It wanted to make sure among other things that there were no serious splits within the movement of the RS Faith. This though had the opposite effect. The first to split from it was Jaimal Singh who could not abide with its rulings. Moreover, he re-introduced the Five Holy Names, and claimed that Saligrams introduction of the One Holy Name was "unauthentic". In other words, his disciples spiritual reach would be just below the highest Region where the Sound Radhasoami, or something like it could be heard resounding. RSSB have insisted that the highest Sound is actually indescribable in any language, and the notion that an earthly Name can describe it to any degree is perhaps laughable.

5. The Beas edition of Sar Bachan or the writings of Shiv Dayal Singh do not give the Holy Name Radhasoami but instead it is replaced by Five Holy Names of earlier masters of the sant tradition which notably flourished in the middle ages. There is a certain other very "minor" alteration to the text. The Beas version reveals that the Satguru who has initiated the disciple is with him, or her for life even if He is no longer in the world. The Dayal Singh/Saligram (or Soamibagh Satsang) believes that the successor of the predessor must be accepted as the new Living Teacher even though the Satsangi may have been initiated by the deceased former. In spite of this, essentially the key point to understand here is Dayal Singh, and Saligrams teachings are virtually identical to RSSB.

6. Since the time of Sawan Singh written Wills have become the norm to avoid successorship rivalry. This is a good thing but some RS groups notably Dayalbagh Satsang have for instance used what has been termed a spiritual election to determine who should come after their previous guru.

The above are the key controversies concerning the RSSB. My data comes notably from the prolific writings of S.D. Maheshwari of Soamibagh Satsang whose line of Satgurus has "temporarily" ceased. His group though is sometimes regarded as the "parent rock" of the RS Faith. Dr. Agam Prasad Mathur wrote The Radhasoami Faith; A Historical Study sometime ago, and more recently a more "objective" account exists by Professor Juergensmeyer entitled The Radhasoami Reality...


THE PROBLEM WITH INTERNET DATA..

There are a few websites on the internet which have come up with some "libellous" information concerning certain branches of the RS Faith. Such info should not be taken seriously unless there is independent corroboration for it from other sources.

However, my take on it all is this. I do personally believe "mistakes" have been made by some "Satgurus" but they may well be deliberate tests of faith. Moreover, they may not matter because it is OUR FAITH, AND BELIEF in a master which ultimately counts. If he, or she is indeed "imperfect" as a person in every respect then a higher power from within will draws us to a real teacher. I seem to recall in Sar Bachan that Dayal Singh said that we should not worry about such matters. Again, what matters is OUR FAITH, AND BELIEF. Indeed, if we are to believe Faqir Chand it would appear that it is our HIGHER SELF which manifests as the Masters Radiant Form, and takes us up. The outer "Satguru" perfect, or imperfect is essential only in so far as he, or she acts as something visible, and inspiring for us on the earthly plane of existence.

It is interesting here to point out that the Beas Satgurus continually refer to themselves in the third person. This may not simply be a show of humility but rather an indication that the REAL SATGURU IS YOUR HIGHER SELF. In effect, the Beas Satgurus may be what might be termed initiating masters in varying degrees of evolution who act on behalf of their predessor. This ofcourse may be complete nonesense, but who knows? Another factor in all this is such Masters would still need to belong to a line of Teachers which had least one Adept who was a true Satguru with full spiritual, and psychic powers on the physical plane. This is a big subject, and I have no time now to enlarge upon it. Maybe in another post.

Netemara, you seem to be under the impression that I wrote this post. I did write the introduction, but everything past the "Here it is:" and dashed line was written by my correspondent, not me.

Netemara wrote: "For those who are following Buddhism as a path I have only one thing to say...it is dead as a doornail as a path."

To be quite honest, this is one of the most absurd, ignorant, ill-informed, and nonsense comments and opinions that I have ever read.... I guess then Netemara would also consider all the profoundly enlightened Buddhist sages such as Bodhidharma; the numerous Chinese Chan (Zen)masters like Dogen, Huang Po, etc etc.; the Indian Buddhist sages like Atisha, Vimalamitra, Manjushrimitra, Padmasambhava, etc.; the Tibetan Buddhist sages like Naropa, Tilopa, Marpa, Milarepa, etc.; and the modern era enlightened masters such as the the line of the Karmapas, going from present day back 17 generations, the Nyingma master Dudjom Rimpoche, and on and on and on .... all to be invalid and "dead as a door-nail"... How clearly absurd, un-educated, and ignorant. Netemara would do better to get some real insight and education before making such preposterous statments. No one who has any real spiritual knowledge, would give such an opinion a second thought.

Netemara wrote: "but you can't get too far inside with its hairsplitting, which I also tried.

Well, I myself have a great knowledge and first-hand experience of the profound Truth which is contained in esoteric Buddhism, and I have no idea what "hair-splitting" you are refering to. Either all the enlightened Buddhist sages and masters are simply "BS" --- or your limited knowledge and experience of esoteric Buddhism is faulty. I would have to choose the latter.

Netemara wrote: "Like it or not my friend RSSB is the wave of the future."

I disagree. The "wave of the future" is not cultism, philosophy, or narrow-mided dogmatic belief systems such as RSSB. The "wave of the future" lies beyond all isms, beliefs, practices, yogas, gurus, religions, and/or followers. The wave of the future is Self-knowledge, Self-empowerment, Self-realization, the enlightened state of One Heart, One Self, One Reality, ie: non-Duality.

Netemara wrote: "Buddhism as a path just like Judaism is no longer viable."

The "Buddhism" which you are referring to is Buddhist 'religion', not the esoteric Buddhist path of awakening, realization, liberation. Religion is all the same, no matter whether it is Christian, Judaic, Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Bahai, Jain, or any of the other numerous lesser religions. Religion is not important. What is important is each and every being's awakening and direct realization of true Self-knowledge, enlightenment. Only Self-realization will bring ever-lasting and indestructable Peace, Knowledge, Happiness, and Freedom.

I would suggestand hope that all readers proceed in this direction, which lies within one's own Being and Awareness, and not waste precious time going in other directions.

Robert Searle wrote: "...the REAL SATGURU IS YOUR HIGHER SELF. In effect, the Beas Satgurus may be what might be termed initiating masters in varying degrees of evolution who act on behalf of their predessor." .... "Another factor in all this is such Masters would still need to belong to a line of Teachers which had least one Adept who was a true Satguru with full spiritual, and psychic powers on the physical plane."

I would suggest and add that the real Sat-Guru is the not just a "higher self", but The Self, the One Self, the only Self there is.

Robert Searle wrote: "the Beas Satgurus may be what might be termed initiating masters in varying degrees of evolution who act on behalf of their predessor."

Now you are talking. This is much more likely to be the case, rather than any of the the R.S. guru-leaders being real genuine Sat-Gurus.

Robert Searle wrote: "...such Masters would still need to belong to a line of Teachers which had least one Adept who was a true Satguru with full spiritual, and psychic powers on the physical plane."

This is where we diverge or disagree. Yes, a true genuine Sat-Guru does pass on a valid teaching, and that is essential for effective spiritual sadhana. But the idea and myth that spiritual and psychic siddhis (powers) are important, necessary, and required for one to be a Sat-Guru, is entirely false. Being a genuine "Sat-Guru" has nothing to do with siddhis (powers). It has everything to do with Self-realization and Self-knowledge.

Also, the idea that one can achieve true spiritual advancement or enlightenment based only on the power coming through a surrogate, proxy, or substitute Guru, who is merely parroting the teachings of a previous genuine Sat-Guru, is also erreoneous. The teaching, provided it is from a genuinely Self-realized Sat-Guru may be efficatious, but belief that a spirtual leader/teacher is a true Sat-Guru, when in reality that is not the case, is to believe in, to follow, and to depend on a fiction.

All that is needed is Self-inquiry and the application of a valid teaching, coming from a genuine Sat-Guru, and sadhana (spiritual practice). No belief, no faith, no proxy or substitute Guru, and no organization is needed for the realization of Self-knowledge, which is enlightenment and liberation from samsara.

Netemara wrote: "For those who are following Buddhism as a path I have only one thing to say...it is dead as a doornail as a path."

To be quite honest, this is one of the most absurd, ignorant, ill-informed, and nonsense comments and opinions that I have ever read.... I guess then Netemara would also consider all the profoundly enlightened Buddhist sages such as Bodhidharma; the numerous Chinese Chan (Zen)masters like Dogen, Huang Po, etc etc.; the Indian Buddhist sages like Atisha, Vimalamitra, Manjushrimitra, Padmasambhava, etc.; the Tibetan Buddhist sages like Naropa, Tilopa, Marpa, Milarepa, etc.; and the modern era enlightened masters such as the the line of the Karmapas, going from present day back 17 generations, the Nyingma master Dudjom Rimpoche, and on and on and on .... all to be invalid and "dead as a door-nail"... How clearly absurd, un-educated, and ignorant. Netemara would do better to get some real insight and education before making such preposterous statments. No one who has any real spiritual knowledge, would give such an opinion a second thought.

Dear author:

You did not read the qualifier I put in there did you? I wrote "as a path" that means everything. You said I said it was invalid in terms of information or enlightenment about spirituality. I did not say that. The Sixth Patriarch (founder of the school of sudden enlightenment) makes it very clear that enlightenment is a myth.

I said or meant that if followed as a path TODAY -- in this age, as a path -- it is dead. I stand by that. You can garner all the wealth from those traditions you will --it is intellectual circus. Because whatever you attained to in past lives within Buddhism or any discipline returns with you and is cumulative in subsequent lifetimes. That occurs whether you study those masters and their scriptures or not. Burn the books who needs them? That is why so many of the statues have been destroyed--it's a message.

That however is not why it is SO dead. It is dead because I say so.

Few if any people ever agree with me on anything and I've been called everything now and when I was in the body of HPB.

HPB who brought the light to the West from the East and who at the same time singlehandedly invigorated Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam was also(see Salig Ram notes above)the spawn for RSSB--she is the final word.

Netemara AKA HPB

I am a visitor here and maintain my own blog on the subject.

Okay Brian, I was under that impression. I saw the qualifier but it was unclear because no name was used. I was wondering about the part that said "with my correspondant's permission...." Is it your wife who wrote the rebuttal?

I was wondering why the "rethink" and thought it was on your part. I liked what you wrote better :) BTW she or whomever should make it clearer that it is not you. Sorry, I am stupid sometimes. I am Atlantean and not Aryan by nature.

Anyway, my reply is for whomever wrote that and not yourself. I will make the correction. Thank you.

Netemara

PS Did your wife write that? She was being nasty I guess.

Someone wrote:

"In Netemara’s world, it appears this would be tit-for-tat. Na na na na na na."

That would be the law of cause and effect. We -- no one including yourself -- don't get out of here unless all is paid up. Are you delusional? Seems so.

Here's my parable for the day:

I created a small birdhenge (it has stones in a cirle) where I feed and water the wild birds. The common sparrows come there most often. But lately beautiful blue jays and cardinals have taken up residence and come to feed daily. Now, should I put up a sign that reads: "This area is for beautiful and enlightened birds only!! Sparrows keep out!!" Hmmm, or should I close it down because sparrows and grackles are there along with the more beautiful species, and I don't want the two to mix because some are "undesirable?"

Or perhaps I should put up a sign reading "Please feed here ONLY rare ones?"

Such is the dilemma of religions, schools, sects, jobs, marriages and anything else. The spirit cannot read. We must take and accept the good with the bad.

These things were not created for either the "enlightened" nor for the "hardened criminals." Anyone with breath in their lungs is both. And you can take that to the bank.

Finally, if you or anyone here thinks you have never "sinned nor been extremely evil" in any past lifetime then you would not have progressed this far to poke your finger in Netemara's face.

Netemara

Netemara wrote: "For those who are following Buddhism as a path I have only one thing to say...it is dead as a doornail as a path." ... "I wrote "as a path" that means everything."

Response: Whether you call it a "path", a teaching, or a way, it boils down to the same thing, which is the universal and timeless truth or dharma which is the fundemental basis and teaching of Buddhism. To say that the path of Dharma (Buddhism) is "dead" is simply ludicrous. The only reason that you could possibly have such an ignorant point of view, is that you have no understanding of dharma, and no awakened Self-knowledge. It reminds me of the phrase: "throwing the baby out with the bathwater". As I said previously, it would be advisable to gain a more complete knowledge, understanding, and some realization, before you go making such nonsense criticisms of either the Buddhist "path", its teachings, or its teachers.

Netemara wrote: "The Sixth Patriarch (founder of the school of sudden enlightenment) makes it very clear that enlightenment is a myth."

Response: What you are saying is a mis-interpretation of the actual original meaning. It was not meant that spiritual awakening, realzation, and the event of enlightenment itself is "a myth". What was actually meant was that enlightenment is not something apart from, or intrinsically different, than one's own true nature, ie: the Buddha nature. It is not that the awakening and state of realization called "enlightenment" is a "myth", but rather that all the ideas and concepts about enlightenment are relative and limited, and therefore myths.

Netemara wrote: "I said or meant that if followed as a path TODAY -- in this age, as a path -- it is dead. I stand by that." "... it is intellectual circus."

Response: The essence of Buddhism, which is called the 'santana dharma' or eternal truth, is never dead. Not today, not yesterday, and not tomorrow. To think that the santana or etenal dharma is somehow irrelevant or "dead" in the present time or "age", is not to understand what it is. Furthermore, the only "intellectual circus" that is performing, is your own mental constructs and duality. It is not the Truth or Buddha Dharma which is faulty, it is your own intellect which is faulty. The "circus" is your own mind, not the Buddhist dharma.

Netemara wrote: "... whether you study those masters and their scriptures or not. Burn the books who needs them? That is why so many ... have been destroyed -- it's a message."

Response: I did not say anything about studying "masters and their scriptures". I mentioned various enlightened Buddhist sages to show that the path of Buddhism is not "dead". I myself, have absolutely no need to rely on "masters and their scriptures". Furthermore, once one is actually awakened into Self-knowledge, which is referred to as "enlightened", books are simply no longer needed. But for you to say "burn the books - who needs them" is not just un-enlightened, it is pure stupidity and somewhat draconian. Enlightenment itself, is certainly not in books. However, books are one form of repository for spiritual teachings, which can and do guide aspirants towards the proper direction. An genuine awakened Sage does not need books, but those who would follow the teachings of the Sages can and do benefit from books to a certain extent.

Netemara wrote: " It is dead because I say so."

Response: Just because '''YOU''' say so ? ... Unfortunately I must say that actually, it seems that you get increasingly and ridiculously more absurd and dogmatically self-assured, every step you take. You would never stand up for more than a minute in an academic forum. You would be laughed out before you could say another word. You foolishness is an insult to intelligent debate.

Netemara wrote: "Few if any people ever agree with me on anything and I've been called everything now" .... "and when I was in the body of HPB."

Response: Well I can really see why. I stronly recommend that you seek professional help, counseling, and therapy. You appear to be somewhat delusional and schizophrenic. I am sure it is likely that you will not admit this, but I must advise you towards getting help to resolve what I see as obvious delusions and irrational thinking.

Netemara wrote: "HPB who ....... (was) the spawn for RSSB -- she is the final word."

Response: Perhaps "HPB" (Helena P. Blavatsky) is "the final word" for Netemara, but only in the opinion Netemara. Again, this is a clear indication of a generally irrational and delusional mind-set. Until Netemara resolves these irrational notions, you will not significantly progress towards true Self-knowledge and enlightenment.

Who Am I? seems to be proving about himself what he is so hell bent on trying to prove about Netemara "that he is no idea what the hell he is saying..." and furthermore if he seeks to make personal attacks on Netemara, which I have not done on Who--I am just talking about myself (which makes people mad for some reason) and what I know--not what I think and not what I've read in Ramana books or on his groups.

It is far above the horizon for Who to know where I am coming from thus I forgive his personal attacks. Beings such as myself are frequently subject to personal attacks. But in the bargain he has shown that he is hardly an awakened individual.

Back to the drawing board for you Who. Sorry Who, but I will not address your attacks tit-for-tat. I don't have the stomach for touching your emotional vomit.

Netemara

To Netemara:

Netemara wrote: "I am just talking about myself (which makes people mad for some reason) and what I know..."

The problem with most of what Netemara says about what Netemara supposedly "knows", is that it is entirely in opposition to and in contradiction with, the real Self-knowledge that all the genuine enlightened Sages from time immemorial have realized, known, spoken, and taught.

The Truth can not be monopolized or manipulated by anyone just to suit their whims and purposes. Either one awakens and comes into accord and alignment with the Truth, or one does not. Those who have truly awakened and realized the Truth are always in total understanding, agreement, and harmony.

Netemara's views are not in such agreement with all of the genuine true Sages, past or present, including Who Am I. The Way of Truth is not one of rigid opinions, ego-centricity, and hard-headedness. The Way of Truth is one of discovery, surrender, and realization. All opinions are simply a testimony of ignorance. Self-knowledge is not an opinion.

For Who Am I, there is never any loss or incompleteness, nor is there any reality in personal opinions. There is only the Truth ... to awaken into, and to abide as.

Netemara wrote: "It is far above the horizon for Who to know where I am coming from..."

Yes... Netemara is indeed "coming from" "far above", and that is simply because hot-air rises. I myself prefer keeping my feet upon the 'Ground of Being'.


Netemara wrote: "Back to the drawing board for you Who."

Yes...."Who" is always at the drawing board, working effortlessly to eliminate all the little bugs, flaws, and bits of misfit data like the infamous netemara virus which creeps in and spoils the integrity of the divine design of pure non-duality.

I have been reading the messages on this site about RSSB, speaking from someone who was brought up in a RSSB family, but chose not to follow it until now (28 years on)totally independantly, I have to say that what I have learnt is this.

Not to get caught up in finer detail, not to try and let others into what is a very private and personal path, and to always try and LOVE, as this is the gift that has been given to us by God, which we all can agree on being RS or not. But most importantly to keep it SIMPLE!! There is so much Jargon and technicalitity going on through these messages that even I am confused as to what should be done!! I dread to think what someone who has never come across a spiritual path of any form might amke of it!!

I am not saying that what anyone on this site is saying is wrong, it is their own personal account and experience. But I just wanted to say, that since finding my path through RSSB, I cannot imagine leading another way of life. I can imagine there are many other paths that would suit other people, which comes down to a case of trying and finding out. I can't see that RSSB path will be a way for everyone, which is why Maharji says, "If you beleive it then follow it, if you don't, then simply don't"

Personally I think as humans we do get too caught on results and technicalities. But my own understanding is the knowledge of - doing this should make this happen- is not the same as understanding - I will do this and I know that this will happen. The rules of meditation don't work for everyone, but at this point the question ought to be asked - "what are my reasons for doing this?". If it is escapism, recognition or even a little ego massaging, then obviously it will not work. If it is truly to find God, then one step of yours towards God DOES invoke ten steps from God to towards you.

I agree that many RS followers are very defensive and intolerant of others. But I beleive that being RS (or whatever path you may choose) is going to be whatever you MAKE it to be . Yes, we do need a filter out all the crap, but talking and feeding crap has always been a very good talent of us HUMANS, don't listen to them. I leave my faith in my own soul, and the word of my Master, who I know will always tell me what is right, and not those who are still caught up in the mesh of karmas we call life.

As far as the point made about chasing the Master, I have only had direct contact with him on one ocassion. Since then I have used the guidance given to me by my Master to look for God on a spiritual level. The Master was only a reference point, and I believe that his only role in my spiritual fulfillment was to help me "get my foot on the first rung". Once meditation was practised according to the, what I find are simple rules, the rest was acheived through my own merit.

IT CAN BE DONE.

Radhaswoami.

If you ask me is RSSB organisational, I would have to say yes and no. But this is not a doing of the Master himself, it is a doing of the followers, who cannot let go of ordinary things like culture, intellect, and ego. If it were not for these things, I should imagine that the whole path (RS) would be a completely different experience for anyone follwoing it.

Who wrote: "The problem with most of what Netemara says about what Netemara supposedly "knows", is that it is entirely in opposition to and in contradiction with, the real Self-knowledge that all the genuine enlightened Sages from time immemorial have realized, known, spoken, and taught."

This is totally laughable because that is precisely with whom my experiences agree--the "insiders."

You have told on yourself Who. Personally, I don't care what you say about my Truth or lack of it. Why? Because it is incorruptible.

Netemara

To Harri:

Harri wrote: "...is RSSB organisational, I would have to say yes and no. But this is not a doing of the Master himself, it is a doing of the followers, who cannot let go of ordinary things like culture, intellect, and ego."

Response:
Most of what you had to say about your own personal feelings and faith in the RSSB, you are certainly entitled to.

However, I would strongly disagree with Harri's belief that: "...this is not a doing of the Master himself, it is a doing of the followers."
You cannot arbitrarily separate the "master" from the organization and its policies. The master is the supreme leader, the director, and the final authority over all of RSSB. Everything which goes on in and about RSSB is sanctioned, directed, and controlled by him. It is only with his approval that anything is done or not. To pretend otherwise is pathetically ignorant, fanciful, blind, and without reason. It is totally absurd to say that the "master" is not responsible for the organization of RSSB as a whole. The "followers" are not directing things at RSSB, they are only following directions.

It is this kind of thing which so many people use to evade facing the real truth about their leaders and their false beliefs and presumptions. It is a form of self-imposed narrow-mindedness, blindness, and wishful-thinking.

Harri also wrote: "...not to try and let others into what is a very private and personal path, ...as this is the gift that has been given to us by God, which we all can agree on being RS..."

Response:
I would say that most, if not all, of the people (including myself) who specifically make comments about RSSB on this web-log, are now or have been, R.S. initiates. Therefore, even though RSSB may tend to be relatively "private and personal", the particular commentators who comment on RSSB on this web-log, are not necessarily outsiders.

Furthermore, to say: "...this is the gift that has been given to us by God, which we all can agree on..." is merely Harri's own personal opinion, and not necessarily something which is true, or that everyone agrees upon. Harri is making an assumption based only upon belief and faith, not upon knowledge and truth. There is no clear evidence that Sant Mat and Radha Soami is a "gift given by God". This is merely presumption. Perhaps Harri should do some real study of the actual documented history of Sant Mat, and specifically the R.S. branch which stems from Shiv Dayal Singh. There is much to indicate that the particular R.S. path is a creation and invention of Shiv Dayal Singh, and not a gift from "God".

It appears that Harri is similar to many sincere people who take things only on superficial face value, and they do not truly investigate deeply and verify the evidence for what they are accepting, believing, and practicing. Such folks are well-meaning, but ill-informed and mislead.

I have made it as clear as possible in all of my comments, that belief will not lead to salvation, liberation, or enlightenment. Enlightenment requires true awakening and realization of the one's own true nature. There is no other way around this. Mere belief and faith are not enough. You may understand and embrace this truth now, or many years down the road, but you must embrace it someday, and you will never reach liberation, enlightenment, "sach khand", until such actual Self-realization occurs. Until then, satisfaction with mere belief and simple faith, is only more religion.

Netemara:

Regarding your statements: "This is totally laughable"; "Personally, I don't care what you say"; and "my Truth...is incorruptible."

If this is all you can come up with, then it is really you yourself who are the one who is "laughable", and your comments are pathetic.

As I had mentioned previously in another comment, it is quite likely that I will not be commenting much more for awhile, or even longer. This is primarily due to the relatively poor reception and obvious negative resistance to my comments, offerings, and elucidations about Self-inquiry and real Self-knowledge. This personal negativity and resistance is coming primarily from other commentators such as yourself.

There is far too much argumentation and focus on various rigid spiritual ideas and notions, dogmatic beliefs, and the comparison of and defense of such perspectives for my liking.

I prefer to engage in productive discussion oriented towards real awakening and the direct realization of Truth. Such is termed true Satsanga.

I have little or no interest in discussing cults and their beliefs, intellectual exercises, or wrestling with other people's rigid concepts and attachments and their acquired beliefs about their spiritual paths, or even about other commentators narcissistic identifications and deluded spiritual notions in general.

It is very easy to criticise a good person,organisation,saint of other religion than ours.If U had realised what is there inside UR body as per teachings of RSSB U would not have passed such comments.First clean UR self then think about others.Try to keep UR small family member together will tell U to how to live in world.

To I Singh:

It is not clear just who you are responding to, but if your comment was directed in response to myself, then I must tell you that you do not know the facts about myself, nor do you know the whole truth about RSSB, and so therefore your conclusion is simply baseless and incorrect.

I Singh stated: "It is very easy to criticise a good person,organisation,saint of other religion..."

Reply: What makes you assume that so-and-so is a "good person" or "saint" ? Just because you yourself may think that someone is "good" or "a saint", does not mean that your opinion is reality, or that everyone else should accept it as being true.


I Singh stated: "....organisation, saint of other religion than ours."

Reply: As a matter of fact, the organization which you are apparently referring to, namely that of RSSB, is not "other" or unfamiliar to me. I know firsthand from where I speak , because I had been an initiated practitioner of Sant Mat and RSSB for 25 years. So I know RSSB from the inside.


I Singh stated: "If U had realised what is there inside UR body as per teachings of RSSB U would not have passed such comments."

Reply: First, the only thing "inside" the human body are cells, flesh, blood, bones, nerves, and fluids. Second, I am quite well aware and very knowlegeable and experienced with the "teachings of RSSB". That is exactly what gives me the solid foundation and perspective with which to speak about the pros and cons of RSSB. I am not just some ignorant outsider.


I Singh stated: "First clean UR self then think about others."

Reply: I Singh knows nothing about myself, and so has no business saying "clean ur self". I Singh should apply this statement to his own self. Furthermore, I can "think about others" as much as I choose, and about whomever I choose.

Conclusion: As I have already stated many times before, it would be wise if people would first get themselves relatively informed and educated about the truth and all the real facts of a particular issue, before they go making uninformed, ignorant, and baseless statements and comments, such as this comment posted by I Singh.

I would like to make a general response to the correspondent going under the alias of 'Who am I'.

As an RSSB initiate who is also open to other paths and systems I feel obliged to take a position of 'In defense of RSSB' to act as devils advocate to all the negativity posted about the organisation, the guru, the followers and the sant mat teaching. This is not because there are not valid crticisms that can be made of all of these, but to harp on negatively about these without any attempt to see the positive is both unjust and unbalanced.

It is also testament to misunderstanding of some elements of the sant mat teaching, with a total bias towards an advaita non dual perspective (which itself is completely open to crticism, both philosophically and morally - as I shall demonstrate).

Yes it is completely true that there is no way of verifying who is a sat guru or not. That is a given. What can be evaluated is how the present guru effects ones resolve to practice contemplation and inner research.

Also, does the guru do his best to strip away theistic/theological belief systems and throw the seeker back on their own sadhana? Does the guru suggest that all beliefs are mere concepts until they become inner gnosis or realisation? Does the guru constantly emphasise that the inner guru is the true 'master' and that this form is the same thing as the true Self or paramatman/purusha. Does the guru suggest that you are either there or not in terms of spiritual realisation and that inner stages of light/sound and bliss are stepping stones to the non dual state of oneness?

My experience of the current Beas master is that he does state all this very thoroughly.

Yes there are issues of sant mat being overly theistic/theological and implicitly dualistic. In my view this is to give access to more people to spiritual practice and devotion. Quite simply most people do not have the intellectual discernment to even begin to appreciate the non dual philosophy and self enquiry would be too challenging. Simple bhakti of the guru and simple meditation technique are all thats needed!

For those who wish to push deeper, the pure non dual stream is there in sant mat, with references to mentalism/idealism(a la Bishop Berkeley and Kant)to the unqualified oneness mentioned by Kabir and Nanak, and Shiv Dayal Singh stating that the Radhasoami stage is not a stage as such but the background state of everything and that it is all 'love' and 'wonder'.

I would say that the implicit duality in sant mat is a very practical response to the absolute mystery of existence and the infinitude of consciousness that all tradtions allude to. In this regard Paul Brunton said that the major philosophical error of advaita is that it assumes total union or 'god realisation' to be reachable.

Brunton disagrees and states that what is realised is the seekers union with that ray of the universal Self within ones being (or the overself as he calls it). Perfect union with the absolute is not within man's grasp as that would imply absolute omniscience being attainable. Brunton suggests that it is soul/Self realisation that is mistaken as absolute union, whereas the mystery in itself remains impenetrable.

I have come across some modern advaita teachers such as Tony Parsons who assume that all spritual practice is a waste of time as all we need to do is abide as the Self. This is fine as a background understanding, but who can do that? It also does not effectively deal with the reduction and processing of mental junk that meditation can achieve.

Also such teachers advocate a very impractical approach to ethics which goes along the lines of 'a piece of watercress and a steak are all of god and so it doesn't matter what you eat'. The fault with this morality is obvious. It is applying absolute principles to non absolute relative situations and practicalities.

The sant mat stance on vegetarianism and a hierarchy of sentience in living creatures, (with a wish to reduce the most harm to the most sentient) is light years beyond this in understanding.

So there are problems with the non dual approaches and they are not the be all and end all they are cracked up to be. They have just as many pitfalls and philosophical failings as sant mat does. Indeed the functional duality of sant mat is more practical for most people, which is why it was adopted by the guru's.

That is enough on the philosophical side for now, I will tackle some of the instititional crticisms of RSSB and the problem of 'organisation' and 'followers'in a later posting.

In closing, any path or teaching is what you choose to make of it with all ones limitations, hopes, expectations and dreams. Sant mat meditation and devotion can and do work in transporting one from suffering and duality into more expanded and steady states of being. It all depends how you go about it and with what maturity, intelligence and compassion you bring to it.

Nick, you hit upon some interesting issues about non-duality and dualism.

I just finished writing an essay on this very subject in which I challenged Ken Wilber’s contention that the Greek philosophers Plotinus and Plato espouse non-duality. Actually, they don’t. They’re at least monists, not non-dualists. And some scholars think that Plotinus was even a mystical monotheist.

These are all just words, of course: non-duality, monism, monotheism. I’m pretty sure that really real reality can’t be captured in words, so something other that concepts and language is needed to understand it. Direct experience, seemingly.

It’s hard to talk about this stuff, but you talked about it nicely. One issue that I addressed in my essay—which you touched on also—is whether the non-dual philosophers/mystics are speaking about objective reality, or about subjective perceptions. Ken Wilber bounces back and forth between these positions.

Sometimes he says that the One and the Many are real, and that non-duality means seeing them both as equally real. Indeed, more than that: they are the same thing. Or no-thing.

Regardless, there is something out there in the cosmos that we can call the One and the Many and the non-dual. But other times Wilber seems to be saying that it all is a matter of perception. How we see things is how they are.

Personally, I’m scientifically inclined. Scientific evidence seems to tilt in the direction of objective laws of nature that are independent of human cognition. So lacking evidence to the contrary, I tend to believe that any spiritual realms of reality will be similar. That is, real—independent of individual perception. Of course, I could be wrong.

Like you, I find that non-duality is another concept with its own limitations and pitfalls. It’s a belief system, just like monism and monothesism, and all other isms. Direct experience is the only way out of belief. That can happen within any sort of organizational confine, Sant Mat, Islam, Wicca, Catholicism, whatever.

As you said, any path or teaching is what you choose to make of it.


Further on ‘In defense of RSSB’.

I would like to follow up my previous posting by making some further comprehensive challenges to the comments made by the ‘Who am I’ correspondent. I make these challenges out of a spirit of intellectual rigour combined with care and concern along the lines of ‘let a hundred schools meet together and talk’. I have no interest in ‘proving’ my argument or being ‘right’. When it all comes down, we simply do not know who or what is right in the mysterious infinitude we find ourselves in. Please excuse the length of this posting as I have tried to provide a ‘refutation’ of all the main points made by ‘Who am I’.

The infinite
Who am I wrote:

This totality is also refered to as the One Self, the Atman, Brahman, Buddha nature, the Ineffable, God, the Great Spirit, and the Tao, etc. This totality is unborn, non-dual, and infinite. Of the nature of perfect peace, pure awareness, everlasting bliss (no sorrow), and unbounded freedom. This totality is the Heart and nature of all manifest beings. Nothing exists apart from it. It is not in a particular place, plane, or realm. All phenomena, dimensions, space, time, and mind, are conditional dream-like appearances within the primordial pure Awareness which is this totality. Therefore, no seemingly "other" being exists in reality. Only the One Being, the One Self, exists for all eternity.

This is exactly what Soamiji says of the non ‘state’ or ‘region’ of Radhasoami, that it is not a region as such but the ALL or essence of everything and nothing. The exact same cosmological perspective is thus at the heart of sant mat. Soamiji also runs out of words and descriptions of this non state by calling it ‘all love’ and ‘wonder, wonder’.

Who am I wrote:
That being the case, there is no possibility or necessity to rely on another apparently separate being for one's spiritual salvation, enlightenment, and liberation. The one who seeks such, is the very same one who is none other than that One Self. All that is needed, is for each and every conscious being to accept, and to abide in and as their own true nature, the One Self, which is perfect peace, ever-lasting happiness, and spiritual freedom.

Yes, this is great if the seeker can simply get on and do that from day one! The vast majority of seekers, including quite sophisticated ones find it hard to look first of all in the obvious place, which is within ones own heart and mind. Therefore the inclination is to start ‘externally’ by looking for THAT in someone who one regards as a realised soul.

That is why large numbers of both simple Indian village people and sophisticated westerners sought out the non dual sage Ramana Maharshi and the Shabd yoga master Sawan Singh. Seekers would go to them for the ‘vibrations’ they gave off and then be attuned to that same ‘current’ within them. Only then can it be acknowledged by the seeker that it is right there inside all along. Very very few can start off with the ‘right’ orientation to begin with as we are so externally driven, and hence that necessitates the outer guru for most seekers.

There is absolutely no doubt for me in my experience that being in the company of some teachers who are said to be realised can have profound effects on ones own inner state. You can run this by your critical faculties and test yourself for autosuggestion and so on, but I have experienced tremendous and long lasting effects from being in the company of at least one teacher who was said to have realised the Self. These effects range from profound states of inner peace, absence of thought and associated anxiety, vibrant ecstatic sensations within the body for up to three weeks after contact with the teacher.

If you accept a spiritual metaphysic, then seekers are absolutely right to regard their master as the very divine, since if there is nothing but THAT then he/she cannot be anything but THAT. If such an orientation can help the seeker to eventually recognise the divine spark within their Self then is that not a valid and useful spiritual practice?

Yogi Bhajan offered a useful idea in saying that if one could fully surrender to even a rock as ones divine ideal then that would be enough to effect realisation.

The spiritual journey

Who am I wrote:
Sant Mat does teach "going inside", but not to realize one's true Self. The whole emphasis is upon an inner/outer dichotomy, where one is supposed to dissociate from body, and meditate upon shabda to experience and travel through subtle planes to reach a supposed higher spiritual plane beyond the causal plane. This is all very dualistic cosmological mental projection. It has absolutely nothing to do with the direct realization of Self-knowledge, which is true enlightenment and true liberation. If one studies the teachings of the true Sages, one will begin to understand the difference.

It would be interesting to note who is considered as a ‘true sage’ by our correspondent. I would hazard a guess and say that Ramana Maharshi is considered as such. Readers should understand that Ramana’s realisation occurred at age 17 through a profound dichotomy and dissociation between body and mind (Self). He experienced a state analogous to death in which he realised he was the animating Self within the body (Atman, Purusha etc). This left him in a realised state but one which took him years to integrate into his understanding and come back to his embodied state in terms of communication and sociability. For years Ramana virtually forgot the health and wellbeing of his body and let lice, mice and other creatures gnaw at him as he was so absorbed in inner communion with the Self.

Even when Paul Brunton met Ramana in his later years, the sage would still go into ‘trance’ and ‘leave the body consciousness’ for hours at a time before ‘coming back’ to bestow darshan on seekers.

All of this is highly analogous to the intent and goal of sant mat spiritual practices. A careful reading of sant mat ‘scriptures’ from Shiv Dayal Singh, Kabir and Nanak state that the seeker is not to stay hooked on inner plane phenomena but to press on to the non dual state of Oneness, called variously as ‘Hari’, ‘Radhasoami’, ‘Ek Onkar’ and so on.

Faqir Chand a non RSSB guru has said that indeed a lot of the inner plane phenomena are simply mental projections and that the goal is realise oneself as a ‘bubble of consciousness’ that is part of the ‘ocean of consciousness’. I firmly believe that the actual ‘goal’ of the Radhasoami teachings and practices is quite definitely the universal or more non dual consciousness. It is simply that it posits a more implicitly dualistic stance in its devotional practices to achieve that end. A basic beginners text from RSSB, ‘Radhaswami teachings’ explains how all the ‘inner planes’ are simply states of consciousness that have been described almost as places to appeal to seekers.

There is actually not too much significant difference in the underlying metaphysic of sant mat and ‘non dual’ teachings such as advaita. The sants have always stated that the shabda is the vehicle for ‘transport’ from ones seeming separation from the divine back to ones own true home (Hari Om, Purusha etc) . This is definitely the case for Kabir, Nanak and Shiv Dayal Singh. The dualistic poetic references to ‘separation’ are to act as stimuli to effect the non journey back to where one already is. In other words it appeals to the strongly devotional streak in humankind. Ramakrishna expressed this as saying, ‘I would rather taste sugar than be sugar’.

Origins of RSSB and sant mat history

Who am I wrote:
Perhaps Harri should do some real study of the actual documented history of Sant Mat, and specifically the R.S. branch which stems from Shiv Dayal Singh. There is much to indicate that the particular R.S. path is a creation and invention of Shiv Dayal Singh, and not a gift from "God".

I have read the works of Maheshwari and a close reading shows them to give far from any objective ‘history’ but proselytizing for one of the Agra branches of Radhasoami.
The central ‘historical’ points are rebutted in RSSB’s ‘Radhasoami teachings’. The facts are that nobody knows the historical details anymore with any certainty. We do not know for sure who Soamiji did or did not appoint as successor and ‘sat guru’, The facts are that all the historical argument is a blinder and distraction and that all we have to go on are our own inner researches and realization of inner peace.

Yes it can be argued that Soamiji put together the RS path, though ‘invention’ is a somewhat negative expression for this. It is clear that Soamiji was a great syncretist, who combined elements of guru bhakti with nada yoga techniques against a cosmological background that includes elements of Sankhya, Vedanta, Tantrism and Shamanism amongst others. This is to be expected as all ‘new’ spiritual technologies and cosmologies rely on syntheses of what has gone before. The blending of yoga with bhakti devotion and sankhya philosophy in the bhagavad gita is testament to this. Soamiji did no more or less that any previous innovator in the field, from Kabir, Nanak, Chaitanya, Shankara and many more. In any case, anything that can help with ones emancipation from narcissism and egotism is surely ‘a gift from god’ or from the transpersonal dimension.


What lies within?
Who am I wrote:

First, the only thing "inside" the human body are cells, flesh, blood, bones, nerves, and fluids.

Can we be sure that this is the ultimate truth about the body? This sounds somewhat similar to the position of materialist, reductionist scientism? That matter is the ‘ground state’ from which the epiphenomenon of ‘mind’ arises?

Some mystics and philosophers have argued strongly that the body is located in the mind and not the other way round (Bishop Berkeley, Paul Brunton, Ramana Maharshi) and that mind or mental impressions are the only way we have of negotiating any ‘reality’ (Kant).

This mentalist or monistic idealism is now supported by radical physicists such as Amit Goswami. The facts are that we do not truly know what sort of universe we are inhabiting. We can posit some kind of monism (whether of mind or matter) but that doesn’t remotely compass the awesome mystery of existence. Whatever we may think of him as a guru, Da Free John sums this up by urging contemplation on the one liner, ‘Why is there something rather than nothing?’ (see ‘The Transmission of Doubt’ by Da Free John). This book firmly quashes any ‘mind and spirit are delusions that arise from a lump of meat’ type of weak argument! Nobody in the opposing monistic camps has yet won the day on this one and are most unlikely ever to.

Cultism

Who am I wrote
I have little or no interest in discussing cults and their beliefs, intellectual exercises, or wrestling with other people's rigid concepts and attachments and their acquired beliefs about their spiritual paths, or even about other commentators narcissistic identifications and deluded spiritual notions in general.

Now we can assume that RSSB is targeted here as a ‘cult’. Yes it is true that the organisation as a whole demonstrates some of the features of cults, especially amongst the true RSSB ‘faithful’. But please could somebody tell me what is not a cult or constitutes ‘cultish’ behaviour in todays world? Is not consumer materialism the biggest mind warping ‘cult’ ever devised? Even if we live wholly secular lives in the world are we not totally conditioned? Do not the endless media adverts on TV and in magazines constitute a distorted form of satsang? Do not shopping malls function as temples and churches where the consumer faithful flock to make their offerings? Are we not all deluded to some degree that the next purchase will lead to satisfaction or the next book will bring us that inner peace?

Let’s be honest, we all exhibit CULTivated neuroses and difficulty in transcending our limitations. Let’s not point the finger of judgement at RSSB followers alone. Far be it for me to judge, (are we are not entitled to make comments about others words or actions with a view hopefully of increasing understanding, tolerance and compassion?) but do these type of comments about ‘other people’ exhibit any tolerance, compassion, understanding, care or concern? Not especially! Do they not instead sound a bit vitriolic and judgemental (the true path is non dualism and advaita and everyone who doesn’t agree is somewhat deluded!?). Please, let’s show those qualities of compassion and tolerance that are both the beginning and end of all classic spiritual paths.

The fact is that sant mat is a great and glorious path to inner realisation, with great sweeping romantic cosmological speculation and yearning for release from the limitations of mind and matter. In their way so are Zen, Advaita, Sufism, Catholic contemplation, Hatha yoga, Vedanta and many more! I speak from no mere lip service here, but as someone who has and does practice techniques and absorb insights from all these great traditions, but with an overall background (at the moment!) in sant mat.

Regarding the organisational structure of RSSB, some of its followers and the secular dealings of the guru; here is my take on it all.

Organisation

Firstly the organisation. RSSB is one of the largest spiritual groups in the world. That is a given. As such it has reached the stage where it has almost gotten bigger as a corporate entity than the individuals that comprise it. Consequently the same type of person typically comes to the fore to be part of the management as within secular organisations.

Consequently they manifest the same qualities. On the positive side they are great organisers, project managers and politicians. On the negative side there is manipulation, bossiness, bureaucracy, elitism and hierarchy. So what’s new? Think it all depends on how enlightened or not the guru is? Read ‘Living with Bhagavan’ by Annamalai Swami and see how the closest followers of one of the most manifestly enlightened guru’s (Ramana Maharshi,) got up to all sorts of machinations, scheming, favoritism and dirty tactics within his ashram.

There have been some hideous sex scandals that have stuck to some ‘non dual’ or advaita gurus such as Muktananda and Da Free John. Whatever else anyone may think about the RSSB gurus, they are absolutely spotless in this regard. There is not even so much as a hint of this type of abuse that goes on. So it goes to show that advaita or pure non dual philosophies are not any better in terms of the conduct of their disciples or masters, just as they are not philosophically superior and more sophisticated than sant mat.

Yes organisations can be a barrier to realising inner truths as Krishnamurti tirelessly pointed out. The trouble is he established lots of organisations to guard his teachings and propagate them in schools throughout the world. Organisations do promote hierarchy and cliques and can obscure the original pure teachings of their founders. However, they can also provide structure to the needy, a framework of faith for the philosophically unsophisticated and general camaraderie and companionship in a troubled world. Please highlight any teaching or faith that does not have attendant problems with organisational support structures!

Followers

Yes there are some satsangi’s who are holier than thou, who mix in a bit of fire and brimstone literalism with a bit of Sunday school preacher righteousness. ‘We are all being devoured by Kal and are all roasting in our own karmas’ kind of stuff. Yes there are definitely those who think that sant mat (not just sant mat but only RSSB) is the one and only true way to spirituality. The guru for them is literally god incarnate and is literally infallible and omniscient. (It is much more comforting to think that the crushingly enormous mystery of existence can be squeezed down into one particular human form for our bracketing and adoration, than to have to stare into the immensity and agnostic uncertainty of things absolute.) Do we have to judge them for all that? Isn’t that simply where they’re at?

There are also those who quietly try to get on with their own understanding of sant mat, which is much more ‘universal and cosmopolitan’. They have no problem in recognising other systems as equally valid (such as Zen or Advaita or other shabd based groups). They have a view of the master as analogous to that of the Zen abbot; someone who acts as guide and preceptor and who can be both stern and compassionate in directing us inwards to find our liberation from mind and materialism. They base this view on their own understanding of other paths and on the practical point of view of simply not knowing for sure who is and who is not a Sat Guru. They frequently find their ‘point of view’ endorsed by the current master, but by very few other satsang speakers. They do not parrot dogma and theology but prefer to rely on their own experience as their barometer of spirituality. They find their outlook perfectly in accord with the ‘deeper’ teaching of sant mat as outlined by Shiv Dayal Singh and Sawan Singh.

Exactly the same mix of seekers can be found in any religious/spiritual group anywhere in the world. I have visited enough of them to experience this. Even amongst the advaita groups and guru’s, egotism, plotting and machinations abound along with sexual scandals pertaining to the guru. So please let’s get some perspective on all this and not single out RSSB for having particularly negative followers.


Benefits of the organisation

For me, one of the great benefits of the RSSB policy in recent years (and that obviously includes the guru as central policy maker!) is the establishment of satsang and seva centres around the world. These centres undoubtedly function as much needed island ashrams within the current madness of consumerism that we live in.

Here adults and children can work and play together in a safe and secure environment. You can talk about god and spirituality without seeming a weirdo. If the pundits out there think that these properties are mini empires for the master and his closest entourage then dream on! When does the master actually get to fully enjoy them with any peace and quiet without being mobbed by groupies who don’t ever get the message that the true guru is within?

The centres were established for the benefit and uplift of the followers, for the enjoyment and sense of community of the sangat and other visitors and to provide a support network and a retreat from conventional society. As the world spirals into chaos (is this being negative? Check out any night’s news for the low down on war, crime, famine and general dysfunction) are not such centres much needed oases for souls to take rest at and reflect on things eternal, rather than just the passing show?


Secular dealings of the guru
Yes it is perfectly obviously that merely placing your faith in one other man or woman is not going to get you out of your own suffering state (whether you call them a perfect master or not). The current Beas master repeats this message ad nauseum and procedes to direct seekers to the inner master for that experience.

Yes his secular doings do have cause for criticism. But doesn’t any C.E.O or high ranking politician do the same? Can any of them ever do anything right in the eyes of the critical? Could you do a better job? If not then keep quiet. To think that RSSB is a kingship is correct in some regards, but hey check out any large company, corporation or even government office and you will find the equivalent there. To think its all non hierarchical and team working in glorious liberal left wing land is simply not true. That only exists in progressive management books and periodicals. Human ambition and power politics are the same the world over. Yes the master will make mistakes and wrong judgements in his secular doings. Don’t we all?

To look upon the master as simply a human being and look for salvation from such is a mistake. He is the shabd in human form as we all are and as he urges us all to realise. So nobody who thinks about the path is looking for salvation from a human being. We are seeking release through the transcendent realisation of spirit, with the master as a much needed intermediary until we can stand on our own two spiritual feet and then slowly merge back into the one Self of all.

Nick,

I love your post. It beautifully articulates some of the thoughts that were crossing my mind on the " who am i " position. It is wonderfully comprehensive and well researched.

Thank You,
Ramnik

Response to Nick:

Nick wrote: "...a general response to the correspondent going under the alias of 'Who am I'. " - and - "...testament to misunderstanding of some elements of the sant mat teaching, with a total bias towards an advaita non dual perspective (which itself is completely open to crticism, both philosophically and morally..."

Response: Nick seems to think that I have a lesser or incomplete understanding of Sant Mat, or as he says: a "misunderstanding of some elements of the sant mat teaching". On the contrary, I think I have a considerably deeper understanding of Sant Mat than most, due to having studied and practiced it for more than 25 years. However, as far as having "a total bias towards an advaita...perspective", this is simply not my position or emphasis at all. My entire focus is upon the direct experience of Self-knowledge, which is achieved through the orientation and practice of Self-inquiry. My focus has NOT been upon "advaita" philosophy as many commenters continue to presume and assert. My entire focus has always been upon Self-inquiry leading to direct experience of Self-knowledge. I do not know why this simple fact continues to be so misunderstood and distorted, other than perhaps those who are critical do not understand the difference between direct experience and philosophy.
Therefore, for the record, let us please get this particular point straight: Self-inquiry (atma-vichara) is an introspective sadhana (spiritual practice). Self-knowledge (atma-jnana) is direct experience of one's own true nature, awareness itself. ... On the other hand, "advaita" (non-dual) as a philosophy, is merely a philosophical construct, orientation, or perspective.

Nick wrote: "..it is completely true that there is no way of verifying who is a sat guru or not."

Response: First of all, this lengthy comment from "Nick" began with, and was predicated upon, a complete error. I did not say that "there is no way of verifying who is a sat guru or not". Nick has misrepresented both my words as well as my meaning. I have clearly indicated in many of my comments about this issue, that a true or genuine "Sat-Guru" is one who has awakened into Self-knowledge, ie: Self-realization. Abiding thus in Self-knowledge, the genuineness of a Sat-Guru is revealed and "verified" to those who would desire to verify it, through their state of being, their teaching, and their general behavior. Therefore it is quite possible to determine who is a genuine Sat-Guru. The indications are certainly there, if one knows where and how to look. However, mere use of the term "Sat-Guru" as a name-title, means nothing.

Nick wrote: "...Does the guru suggest .....that inner stages of light/sound and bliss are stepping stones to the non dual state of oneness?... My experience of the current Beas master is that he does state all this very thoroughly."

Response: Perhaps your "current Beas master " does suggest "...that inner stages of light/sound and bliss are stepping stones to the non dual state...", but that does not correspond to the teachings of the true genuine Sages. These so-called "inner stages", "light /sound and bliss", and "stepping stones", have nothing to do with the real teaching and practice of Self-inquiry and Self-realization, except as notions and mis-identifications which are to be discarded. Nick is attempting to imply that the dualistic Radha Soami teachings and the R.S ."inner stages of light/sound", are somehow proceeding towards the "non-dual state of oneness". This notion is flat-out incorrect. As I have stated elsewhere, it would be wise for commenters to be truly knowledgable and educated about a particular issue, before making assertions and judgements which have no basis in fact.

Nick wrote: "...most people do not have the intellectual discernment to even begin to appreciate the non dual philosophy and self enquiry would be too challenging. Simple bhakti of the guru and simple meditation technique are all thats needed "

Response: Oh really ? I have heard this absurd and narrow-minded arguement and excuse before. But it is still just as faulty and ignorant as it ever was before. This idea is downright ignorant. It is wrong to say or imply that people are just too stupid or simple-minded for average people to achieve awakening of Self-knowledge. To justify your criticism of Self-realization, you imply that people are so unintelligent or incapable that all they can handle is some mild guru-bhakti and simple meditation. The fact of the matter is that, blind guru-bhakti and a little mantra meditation will not result in the liberated state of Self-knowledge. The reality is that simple Self-inquiry is quite natural and innate to all, and it requires no such faith, devotion, or bhakti to any Guru, nor any sort of mantra meditation. The potential for awakening Self-knowledge is freely available to all, and only requires a sincere desire and some self-honesty to bring fruition.

Nick wrote: "....the pure non dual stream is there in sant mat, .... mentalism/idealism (a la Bishop Berkeley and Kant)to the unqualified oneness mentioned by Kabir and Nanak..."

Response: Again, this is a considerable digression and distortion from my own comments regarding Self-inquiry and Self-knowledge. Nick's reference to Berkeley, Kant, mentalism, idealism, Kabir, Nanak, and other philosophers and their philosoiphies etc. has absolutely nothing to do with the direct experience of the non-dual state of pure Self-knowledge, which is realized through the practice of Self-inquiry.

Nick wrote: "...Paul Brunton said that the major philosophical error of advaita is that it assumes total union or 'god realisation' to be reachable.

Response: Oh really ? Is Nick an authority on Paul Brunton ? This is another flat-out distortion. As a matter of considerable fact, Paul Brunton was extremely aligned with, and in profound agreement with, the view of Advaita. Not only that, Paul Brunton considered the great sage, Sri Ramana Maharshi to be the quintessential realization of Self-knowledge, and the clear evidence that Self-realization is quite attainable. Even Sri Ramana himself clearly stated that anyone could attain Self-realization as well. But nevertheless, Ramana's statements derived from his own Realization, are significantly more expert than Brunton's philosophical conjectures and musings. It is also important to note that Brunton was a very prolific writer, and he has been found to contradict himself on numerous occasions.

Nick wrote: ".....some modern advaita teachers ... who assume that all spritual practice is a waste of time as all we need to do is abide as the Self. This is fine as a background understanding, but who can do that?" .... "It also does not effectively deal with the reduction and processing of mental junk that meditation can achieve."

Response: Now Nick is bringing other "modern advaita teachers" into this issue. I am not concerned with what other "modern advaita teachers" have to say. I could not even begin to address what other people may think. Nick then asserts and asks: " abide as the Self ...is fine as a background understanding....but who can do that?" Answer: Anyone, any being of awareness who can apply themselves to Self-inquiry, is quite able to realize innate Self-knowledge and thus abide 'as the Self'. But contrary to Nick's notion, Self-knowledge and to "abide as the Self" is not something to "do". Self-realization is not "doing". Self-realization is the loss of ignorance through one's awakening into true Knowledge.

Nick wrote: "such teachers advocate a very impractical approach to ethics which goes along the lines of 'a piece of watercress and a steak are all of god and so it doesn't matter what you eat'. The fault with this morality...".

Response: I do not know who or what Nick is specifically referring to, but it has nothing to do with myself. Nick is speaking about peoples views and justifications towards eating animals vs.vegetarianism. Whatever others advocate or justify on the basis of philosophy or whim is not my concern. Nick is somehow trying to link other "teachers" and their morality and ethics, or lack thereof, to myself. There is NO connection. Nick may have a valid argument regarding philosophical hypocrisy, but his arguement has nothing to do with myself. This shows that Nick is attempting to bolster his criticism of Self-realization, by foolishly incorporating elements which have no relation to the direct experience of Self-realization. As a matter of fact, Sri Ramana Maharshi was himself a strict and total vegetarian and he naturally advocated and naturally practiced ahimsa (non-violence). Nick then states: "The sant mat stance on vegetarianism ....is light years beyond this in understanding." As if Sant Mat is somehow superior. But there are many spiritual paths which are vegetarian in principle and practice, not just Sant Mat, and that includes the vast majority of the folks who are oriented towards "advaita". The bottom line here is that Nick has got his aim and his targets mixed up.

Nick wrote:
A.) "there are problems with the non dual approaches and they are not the be all and end all they are cracked up to be."
B.) "They have just as many pitfalls and philosophical failings as sant mat does".
C.) "...the functional duality of sant mat is more practical for most people, which is why it was adopted by the guru's."

Response:
A.) Is that right ? This judgement would necessarily require that Nick has actual direct experience of Self-knowledge and Self-realization, which to my view, he clearly does not. Therefore, how could Nick know that the "non-dual approaches" "are not the be all and end all they are cracked up to be", if he has not engaged the sadhana of Self-inquiry to its completion ? Answer: He does not know.
B.) If so, then lets see these "pitfalls" and "philosophical failings". Where are they and what are they ? If you are going to make such a statement, then you had better back it up with evidence and facts. This is nothing more than unsubstantiated blowing of hot-air. This kind of baseless is not even worth a reply.
C.) Who says the "duality of sant mat is more practical for most people" ? That is merely your one opinion. The truth of the matter is, that the mind of duality is the cause of all ignorance, suffering, fear, mis-indentification, and separation. Moreover, the idea that duality was "adopted by the guru's" is also totally relative and mere conjecture. What Guru's ? Which Guru's ? And who says they "adopted" "duality". And are these so-called "guru's" you are referring to, true and genuine Guru's ? Nick's comment is just another fabrication based upon un-related and un-substantiated opinions.

Nick wrote: " Sant mat meditation and devotion can and do work in transporting one from suffering and duality into more expanded and steady states of being." - and - "It all depends how you go about it and with what maturity, intelligence and compassion you bring to it."

Response: If that were true, then you would have a fair number of satsangis who are free from "suffering" and who are "into more expanded and steady states of being." Maybe Nick knows some satsangisa like that, but I have seen none. I have been to the Dera numerous times and have seen many thousands of satsangis there, as well as encountering hundreds of satsangis both on the east coast, middle america, and the west coast of the USA. I have never seen a satsangi who was abiding in Self-knowledge, Self-realization, or one who was being transported "from suffering and duality into more expanded and steady states of being.". I would think that if Nick is even partially correct, then there would be considerably more evidence to support his claim than there is. My own experience gained from my encounters with hundreds and thousands of satsangis, is that there simply is just no evidence to indicate that most satsangis have any significant degree of true spiritual awakening, and/or realization of Self-knowledge.

Nick wrote: "I would like to follow up my previous posting by making some further comprehensive challenges to the comments made by the ‘Who am I’ correspondent.".... " I have tried to provide a ‘refutation’ of all the main points made by ‘Who am I’."

Nick wrote: "This is exactly what Soamiji says of the non ‘state’ or ‘region’ of Radhasoami, that it is not a region as such but the ALL or essence of everything and nothing. The exact same cosmological perspective is thus at the heart of sant mat. Soamiji also runs out of words and descriptions of this non state by calling it ‘all love’ and ‘wonder, wonder’."

Response: Nick is attempting to indicate that the essence of the RS teaching about the region of Radha Soami, as it was espoused by "Soamiji", is akin to non-duality. I have no argument with that, but whatever the definitions are about the nature of the so-called region of Radha Soami, or even of the Self, they are not essential or relevant to the actual direct experience of the awakening into Self-knowledge. There is fundamentally but One Reality, be it be called "The Self", or "Radha Soami".

Nick wrote: "The vast majority of seekers, .....find it hard to look first of all .... within ones own heart and mind." - and - "...the inclination is to start ‘externally’ by looking for that in someone who one regards as a realised soul."

Response: This is a very presumptive generalization about "vast majority of seekers". I disagree on that basis. If you are going to generalize, which is not a good idea to begin with, then I feel that all people have the ability and inclination towards knowing themselves, or Self-knowledge, especially if they are guided by a genuine realized Sage and/or his Teaching.

Nick wrote: "....Ramana Maharshi and the Shabd yoga master Sawan Singh." ....."Very very few can start off with the ‘right’ orientation to begin with as we are so externally driven, and hence that necessitates the outer guru for most seekers"

Response: Nick has here mentioned Ramana Maharshi and Sawan Singh in the same breath, in the same context, and such a comparison is fairly misleading. These two individuals are very very different. The teaching of Sri Ramana Maharshi is not the same as the teaching of Sawan Singh (which he merely acquired from his guru, Jaimal Singh). Sri Ramana was a fully enlightened Sage (Jnani) who abided in profound Self-knowledge. Ramana taught Self-inquiry to achieve Self-realization and consequent liberation. On the other hand, Sawan Singh taught mantra meditation and shabda yoga. As a matter of unargueable fact, Sant Mat dogma (Swamiji in Sar Bachan) falsely criticises all other paths such as Jnana, Buddhism, Advaita, and both the dualism of the vedic Vaishnavaism, and the non-dualism of the vedic Shaivism and Brahmanism to be quite 'inferior' and of 'a lower plane'. This reveals this particular ignorant and unenlightened false negative bias which is promoted by Sant Mat and subscribed to by its various proponents. None of those who criticise Self-realization and Jnanis (like Sant Mat does), have any first-hand knowledge or direct experience of that which they are criticising. It is simply a bunch of talk, by those who do not know.

Nick wrote: "There is absolutely no doubt for me in my experience that being in the company of some teachers who are said to be realised, can have profound effects on ones own inner state." - and - "...from being in the company of at least one teacher who was said to have realised the Self."

Response: I have no doubt that some benefit is gained by being in the company of a true Sage. I never said or implied anything different. But they must be a genuine Sage, not just someone who makes exalted claims, or who can speak spiritual platitudes.

Nick wrote: "...seekers are absolutely right to regard their master as the very divine, since if there is nothing but that, then he/she cannot be anything but that. If such an orientation can help the seeker to eventually recognise the divine spark within their Self, then is that not a valid and useful spiritual practice?

Response: Yes, all beings including one's outer guru are embodiements of the one "divine" Self. But to worship the outer Guru as being somehow more "divine", or as being more spiritually superior and "God incarnate", as does RSSB and its dis-empowered followers, is a considerable drawback, and is not based in the equanimity of Self-knowledge.

Nick wrote: "...a useful idea in saying that if one could fully surrender to even a rock as ones divine ideal then that would be enough to effect realisation."

Response: This is a cute thought, but it is misleading. The key here is surrender, not the object of surrender. Self-inquiry is nothing other than the act of surrendering to the truth of one's own real nature and being. So surrender is the real issue, not "a rock".

Nick wrote: "It would be interesting to note who is considered as a ‘true sage’ by our correspondent."

Response: Name dropping is not my game. The general attitude behind this question is all wrong as well.

Nick wrote: "Ramana’s realisation occurred at age 17 through a profound dichotomy and dissociation between body and mind (Self).

Response: Yes generally, but there is one significant error in your terminology. "Mind" is not the Self. The Self is pure consciousness. The mind is the illusion of duality which springs from ignorance (absence of Self-knowledge). In Sri Ramana's case, it was much more of an awakening as pure Consciousnness itself, than it was any kind of strategic attempt to dissociate from the body.

Nick wrote: "...he realised he was the animating Self within the body.."

Response: This is incorrect. According to Sri Ramana's own testimony, he never considered the Self to be "within the body". He clearly indicated many times, that the Self was pure Consciousness and not inside the body. He clearly indicated that all thoughts, perceptions, body, and false-ego (ahamkara) are within the mind, which is within the Self. The Self is not contained within a body, or within anything.

Nick wrote: "...as he was so absorbed in inner communion with the Self."

Response: "The Self" is not only "inner". Sri Ramana was not so much "absorbed in inner communion", as he was steadily abiding as the Self. The idea of "inner communion" has a slight dualistic tone. This is the problem. People trying to describe the state and/or realization of a Sage, without having any direct experience of Self-knowledge themselves.

Nick wrote: "...in his later years, the sage would still go into ‘trance’ and ‘leave the body consciousness’ for hours at a time"

Response: How does Nick know whether Sri Ramana would "leave the body consciousness" ? The fact is that you do not know. A true Jnani such as Ramana Maharshi, abides in the awakened state, which is inclusive of all other states. It is highly likely that Sri Ramana did not leave body consciousness, although it may have appeared so from the view of outsiders.

Nick wrote: "All of this is highly analogous to the intent and goal of sant mat spiritual practices".

Response: Absolutely and positively not true. The intent and goal of Sant Mat is described very very differently from that of Self-realization, and in fairly dualistic terms and orientation. It is foolish to try to fabricate some similarity or commonality. The basic premise, and the basic strategy, is very different between the two. The goal of Sant Mat is not clearly delineated or defined, other than a vague sense of reaching the higher plane of Sach Khand and reposing in the "lap of the Sat Purush". Such babble sounds attractive to the unawakened, but it is too much like religious mythology, cosmology, and dogmatic belief, for my sense of reality.

Nick wrote: "...the seeker is not to stay hooked on inner plane phenomena but to press on to the non dual state of Oneness..."

Response: If that is really true, then why bother with "inner plane phenomena" at all ? This is my point. Sant Mat and RSSB is riddled with contradictions which confuse, mislead, and distract people from the spiritual enlightenment of awakening to Who they really are, and what true Self-realization is reallly all about. The inner planes are nothing but a virtual labyrinth of duality, illusion, and mind, which can all be overcome in an instant, through the awakening of Self-knowledge. Nick seems to be doing nothing more than parroting the same old Sant Mat / RSSB dogma. I would respect his opinions and theories aa bit more, if he spoke from his own direct experience and knowledge, and not simply resort to same old second-hand opinions and notions that all the other blind followers of RSSB try to use as supposedly valid arguments. The best thing to do is not to waste your time foolishly defending RSSB, but simply apply yourself to real Self-inquiry, and realize true Self-knowledge and enlightenment in your very own case. Then you won't need to subscribe to, believe in, or argue about, anything. You will have direct tacit experience of the awakened state of Self-knowledge.

Nick wrote: " I firmly believe that the actual ‘goal’ of the Radhasoami teachings and practices is quite definitely the universal or more non dual consciousness. It is simply that it posits a more implicitly dualistic stance in its devotional practices to achieve that end.

Response: All well and good....but what necessity is there to incorporate such a dualistic orientation in seekers, when you say that the goal is that of achieving non-duality ? This is just another of the many contradictions which lie beneath the seemingly attractive surface of Sant Mat.and the Radha Soami cult. Nick's argument is as about as faulty as they come. Especially in this case. The incorporation of dualstic views in RS teachings, does not in any way facilitate an aspirant's realization of the non-dual state of Self-knowledge. This kind of distortion, misleading ideas, and absence of Reason, are a detriment to the promulgation of dharma.

Nick wrote: "...all the ‘inner planes’ are simply states of consciousness that have been described almost as places to appeal to seekers."

Response: "Appeal to seekers " ? This is backwards. Who says that spirtual teachings and the truth must be adapted to "appeal to seekers". It is not the spiritual teaching or the truth iself which must adapt, but rather it is the "seeker" who must adapt and align with the spiritual teaching and the truth.

Nick wrote: "There is actually not too much significant difference in the underlying metaphysic of sant mat and ‘non dual’ teachings such as advaita."

Response: You may think there is not a difference in the so-called "metaphysics", but that is very debateable. There is a very definite difference in orientation, premise, application, and results.

Nick wrote: "Ramakrishna expressed this as saying, ‘I would rather taste sugar than be sugar’."

Response: Briefly stated: So what ! That was Ramakrishna's feeling in that particular moment. It is not a universal truth. The reality is that one is already "the sugar", and cannot be otherwise. Tasting and Being are not separate.


Nick wrote: "The facts are that all the historical argument is a blinder and distraction and that all we have to go on are our own inner researches and realization of inner peace." .... "In any case, anything that can help with ones emancipation from narcissism and egotism is surely ‘a gift from god’ or from the transpersonal dimension."

Response: Indeed.... So instead of analysing and dissecting spiritual beliefs and dogma, why not proceed forward with Self-inquiry and achieve direct experience of Self-realization ?

Nick wrote: "Can we be sure that this is the ultimate truth about the body? .... That matter is the ‘ground state’ from which the epiphenomenon of ‘mind’ arises?"

Response: I certainly did not say or even remotely imply, that "mind" arises from the body. I stated that Consciousness is not "inside" or somehow contained within or encapsulated by the body. I stated that the only thing that is "inside" of the physical body is flesh, blood, bones, nerves etc. Consciousness is not 'inside" the body. Primordial Awareness is unborn. Consciousness or Awareness, in its unawakened state, is merely falsely identified with the body. The removal of this delusion is referred to as Self-realization and Self-knowledge.

Nick wrote: " The facts are that we do not truly know what sort of universe we are inhabiting."

Response: Perhaps you yourself do not know, but those who have awakened into Self-knowledge do know.

Nick wrote: "We can posit some kind of monism (whether of mind or matter)..."

Response: Self-knowledge is not to "posit" monism, or to "posit" any kind of "ism'. Self-knowledge is only about direct experience. Nick's entire arguement tends to rest upon his particular conceptual views about the various philosophical angles, and his presumed concepts about the supposed benefit of duality, the supposed difficulty in understanding non-duality, etc.etc.

Nick wrote: "‘Why is there something rather than nothing?" Nobody in the opposing monistic camps has yet won the day on this one.

Response: Of course I disagree on both statements. But first, the simple answer: There is NO "something", and there is NO "nothing". There is neither a "something", nor is there a "nothing". Both are mere dualistic mental constructs. Reality transcends the illusion and mystery of duality.

Nick wrote: Now we can assume that RSSB is targeted here as a ‘cult’. Yes it is true that the organisation as a whole demonstrates some of the features of cults, especially amongst the true RSSB ‘faithful’.

Response: Enough said. Like it or not, RSSB is a "cult". So what if other facets of society seem cultish as well. We are not talking about society in general. We are talking about RSSB. There are many cults of some degree or other. That does not change the simple fact that RSSB is a cult. What is the big deal ? I guess some folks just can't handle the truth that their own spiritual group, is a cult as well. So they try to deny it, or to make artifical excuses, or whatever they can to avoid the fact that it is really a cult, and they are followers of a cult, followers of a cult leader, and subscribers to the cult philosophy. The funny thing is: that no one is forcing them to follow, to believe, or to cling to anything. It is all their own ignorance (absence of Self-knowledge) which causes them to feel any need to belong to, or to believe in, anything or anyone..

Nick wrote: Far be it for me to judge,....but do these type of comments about ‘other people’ exhibit any tolerance, compassion, understanding, care or concern ? ..... Do they not instead sound a bit vitriolic and judgemental (the true path is non dualism and advaita and everyone who doesn’t agree is somewhat deluded!?).

Response: Now Nick is treading outside his own territory. If you go and carefully re-read any of my previous very sober comments, you will notice that most of what I have posted is in direct response to a number of false allegations, assumptions, and baseless criticisms of "advaita" and Ramana Maharshi. I speak from my own direct experience, and I have definitely never said: "The true path is non dualism and advaita, and everyone who doesn’t agree is somewhat deluded. " Nick has totally misrepresented, mis-quoted, and falsified what I have written and presented. "Vitriolic and judgemental" is not my style or attitude. To counter this bluntly: "Nick is full of ... it" My advice: Stick to what you really know Nick, and don't venture into places where you have no direct experience.

Nick wrote: "The fact is that sant mat is a great and glorious path to inner realisation, with great sweeping romantic cosmological speculation and yearning for release from the limitations of mind and matter."

Response: Give me a break !!! This is nothing but outright shameful romanticising of the esoteric. It has less value than cow-dung. Maybe you'll realize that someday, when you wake up from "La-La-Land".

Nick wrote: "I speak from no mere lip service here, but as someone who has and does practice techniques and absorb insights from all these great traditions, but with an overall background (at the moment!) in sant mat.

Response: Well isn't that nice..... But "practicing techniques" and "absorbing insights" is still a far cry from the direct experience of Self-knowledge. And the "background in Sant Mat" does not lend any credibility either.

Nick wrote: "...scandals that have stuck to some ‘non dual’ or advaita gurus such as Muktananda and Da Free John."

Response: I do not know, nor do I care. I was not an admirer of either one, and what may be rumored is irrelevant to me These two you mention are not of “advaita” in its traditional sense either.

Nick wrote: "Whatever else anyone may think about the RSSB gurus, they are absolutely spotless in this regard.”.... “ There is not even so much as a hint of this type of abuse that goes on.”

Response: Bonk !!! This assertion is complete nonsense. There are several questions regarding the secret behavior of more than one Sant Mat guru. Like I said, I could care less. But be it known that Nick's assetion that Sant Mat gurus ar "absolutely spotless", is highly questionable. there is a whole lot more than just a “hint”.

Nick wrote: “So it goes to show that advaita or pure non dual philosophies are not any better in terms of the conduct of their disciples or masters, just as they are not philosophically superior and more sophisticated than sant mat.

Response: The entire weight and fixation here is upon the duality of superior vs. inferior, moral vs. immoral, ethical vs unethical, belief vs experience etc. This argument is endless. Self-knowledge will resolve all these questions and conflict.

Nick wrote: “Yes there are some satsangi’s who are holier than thou, ..... Yes there are definitely those who think that sant mat (not just sant mat but only RSSB) is the one and only true way to spirituality. The guru for them is literally god incarnate and is literally infallible and omniscient.” ..... “It is much more comforting to think that the crushingly enormous mystery of existence can be squeezed down into one particular human form for our bracketing and adoration, than to have to stare into the immensity and agnostic uncertainty of things absolute. Do we have to judge them for all that? Isn’t that simply where they’re at? “

Response: For once you are right, satsangis are on a “holier than thou” trip....And they do think that the master is God incarnate.....But is “comfort” what Self-realization or enlightenment is about ? Absolutely not ! Is that where they are at ? Obviously.

Nick wrote: “There are also those who quietly try to get on with their own understanding of sant mat, which is much more ‘universal and cosmopolitan’. ”...the practical point of view of simply not knowing for sure who is and who is not a Sat Guru.” “...find their outlook perfectly in accord with the ‘deeper’ teaching of sant mat as outlined by ....”

Response: I really have no interest whether people have a “more universal and cosmopolitan” understanding of Sant Mat or not. The entire Sant Mat process and view is based in a dualstic presumption; and it is, in my opinion, a waste of precious time. Mindless repetiton of some “holy” mantra, and the belief and worship of an unenlightened man as being “God incarnate” is in my opinion, a very unfortunate affair.

Nick wrote: “Even amongst the advaita groups and guru’s, egotism, plotting and machinations abound along with sexual scandals pertaining to the guru. So please let’s ....not single out RSSB for having particularly negative followers.

Response: I don’t know who or what Nick is referring to by the generalization of “advaita groups”, but it is not anything or anyone that I have anything to do with.

Nick wrote: “The current Beas master repeats this message ... and procedes to direct seekers to the inner master for that experience.”

Response: If that is true, then why does he continue to play “master”. And it really does not matter what message he gives, as long as he is not truly awakened into Self-knowledge, and is abiding in steady Self-realization. Is he Self-realized ? I would have to say that there are no indications of that, at all. None. Show me even one clear sign that this individual is abiding in Self-knowledge. There are none. Therefore, he is not a genuine “master” (nor a Sat-Guru) in the real sense of the term.

Nick wrote: “To look upon the master as simply a human being .... He is the shabd in human form as we all are and as he urges us all to realise.”

Response: What is the need to bring the concept of “shabd” into this ? Nick may think that the “master” as well as himself is “shabda in human form”, but he has no right to apply that notion to “we all”. Shabda is not my own view, and Nick does not speak for me. Actually, Nick has mis-quoted, mis-represented, and mis-interpreted my views on a number of different issues. So don’t try to sound as if we all accept certain ideas as being in common. And if you really want to know or learn what I know, then simply ask me, but don’t be so presumptous as to try and tell me where I am at.


Okay, intellectual gloves off and let’s get down to brass tacks. I would like to explore the motivations behind some of the disaffected former RSSB ‘initiates’ (including our correspondent ‘Who am I’) in their hostile sounding and sustained haranguing of all things Sant mat.

Why do the rants of so many former satsangi’s of RSSB sound like the complaints that exes bring to their former lovers? Such a stream of abuse and invective is a common theme amongst all such RSSB detractors in my experience.

If you have a problem with Sant mat then why do you not simply move on and let it alone? Why are you like a dog with a bone? Do you wish to enlighten the deluded who are still stuck in cult land? Perhaps once you’ve finished with us you can tackle extreme Bushism or Tony Blair’s new labour before moving on to ideologically bring Al Qaeda to task! There’s a whole world of the doctrinally deluded out there waiting for some non dual wisdom!

In this response I am going to shift the ‘defense of sant mat’ up a gear by taking the stance of agnostic devotion (which has an advocate in Faqir Chand – a sant mat guru). This view implies that one can experience what is perceived to be the divine Self within, but with no certainty as to what this Self is.

Also, I was prepared to be non personal and engage in discussion in a humorous and friendly fashion. However the gauntlet has been thrown down in Who am I’s response and it is definitely not friendly. Witness the list of invectives that have been applied to my responses alone (I quote a list of expletives that are made about my points):

(Incorrect, Absurd and narrow minded, Hot air blowing, Baseless, Blind, Cow dung!)

The obvious response is that those who go mud slinging are themselves dirty as can be!

Thus this response makes no pretence of being particularly friendly. I aim to quash the stream of near ‘abuse’ made against Sant mat by the Who am I correspondent and to flag up some substantial gaps in the argument that are fully rebutted by the stance of Agnostic devotion. So my rant shall focus on the fundamental ‘UNKNOWINGNESS’ of us all in relation to the ABSOLUTE.

Questions about the absolute are viewed as impenetrable by even the most experienced sages, all claims to the contrary being a conceit and bluff. The basic situation of existence being summed up in the Zen like ‘Koans’ (unsolvable questions that facilitate realisation) of;
‘Why is there something rather than nothing?’
‘What is the nature of any single thing in itself?’
‘Who or what am I?’


Please do not insult readers of this site that your comments are not rooted in hostility and a sense of grievance against RSSB and Sant mat. The tone is obvious and perceptible to anyone with a pulse, let alone any depth of self knowledge. The question is what has generated such hostility? The aggressive and preachy tone also militates against our correspondent having attained a significant degree of self knowledge, which is based on kindness and compassion, with a healthy dose of tolerance. Our correspondent seems hell bent on bringing Sant mat to task, whilst bolstering up his own speculations into Self knowledge which are lauded as ‘experience’. So my question again is what is the motivation behind such sustained attacks?

Let me state again quite clearly my position. I really couldn’t care less about what teaching or dogma is the highest, who is or is not a ‘true’ guru and various shows of learning about various philosophies. My position is to play ‘devils advocate’ to the unending stream of hostility towards Sant mat and RSSB in particular. I am not one of the ‘RSSB faithful’ but someone who has made a deep study of the teachings of Sant mat and those of many other world religions and philosophies.

I am not a sectarian satsangi or even first and foremost an RSSB initiate. The reason for my ‘defense of Sant mat’ is partly because I feel it is unjustified both philosophically and morally to continuously attack a faith and practice without a vigorous rebuttal, and secondly because I question the motivations of those doing so.

In this response I shall tackle some of the comments raised by Who am I and also conjecture on what I believe are some of the motivating factors behind intellectual and moral attacks on RSSB. Rest assured that I would do the same to any teaching or path that was being wantonly attacked, whether it was Christianity against the secularists or the secularists against the Christians. For goodness sake let’s show some care and respect in our dealings with each other’s faiths and feelings!

One of the primary motivations I would suggest is that some ‘ex’ satsangis feel a great sense of letdown, frustration and disappointment at their non achievement of ‘results’ from their (often) many years of Sant mat meditation. This is not surprising as Sant mat does dangle some alluring carrots in front of the seeker in terms of amazing inner regions of light and sound and waves of bliss.

Total non realisation of any of this after years of sustained effort are enough to make anyone feel cheated and as one satsangi said to me recently, ‘to want their time back’. In other words the many long and tedious hours of mantra repetition have yielded absolutely nothing and so humans being what we are we want payback. This sense of time wasted and ‘lack of success’ is one of the basic human factors behind the motivations of sustained Sant mat detractors (I would suggest).

Our greed for inner experiences and the failure to realise them is enough to create extreme hostility amongst some detractors.

This ingrained sense of failure and time wasted is then channelled into attacks against the guru, the teachings, the organisation and ones fellow deluded followers. Anything seems to be grist for the mill in order to vent ones spleen and find someone or something to blame!

First of all, can we conjecture that our ‘Who am I’ correspondent speaks with any inner authority of direct experience? Perhaps and perhaps not! Truly realised sages such as Ramana and Sri Atmananda were said to be did not spend huge amounts of time and energy in talking down other teachings and paths. Indeed Ramana spoke about how nada yoga (and many other methods) can be incorporated into the process of Self Realisation. (Teachings of Ramana Maharshi edited by Arthur Osborne).

Perhaps in the same regard I speak with inner authority of Sant mat realisation, and perhaps not! That is not the issue in question. We can bat back and forth ad nauseum on the metaphysics and the basic premises of Sant mat and a non dual approach. I would like to explore possible reasons for the obvious tone of hostility, aggression and frustration inherent in the comments by ‘Who am I’ and other detractors.

My first response is to question why it took our correspondent 25 years to become disillusioned of what he perceives as the errors of Sant mat. Yes it is correct that pure ‘practice’ of Self enquiry is not to be wholly identified with the ‘philosophy’ of advaita.

However the ‘practice’ is the software of the ‘philosophical hardware’ and the two cannot be separated out. In the same way the technology or practices of Sant mat are simran, bhajan and dhyan, which are not coterminous with the pure experience of inner light and sound. Please do not ask if I have the requisite experience in this area, because the simple rejoinder is to question your vouchsafed ‘experience’ of non dual ‘reality’.
I feel that even the most simple of pundits can make a clear distinction between ‘direct experience’ and ‘philosophies’.

I would argue that the same distinction applies for Sant mat realisations as it does for non dual realisations and that it is futile to claim that ones own offerings result from ‘experience’ whereas others result from ‘philosophising’ because anyone’s experience can be called into question, including ones own.

Who am I wrote:
I have clearly indicated in many of my comments about this issue, that a true or genuine "Sat-Guru" is one who has awakened into Self-knowledge, ie: Self-realization. Abiding thus in Self-knowledge, the genuineness of a Sat-Guru is revealed and "verified" to those who would desire to verify it, through their state of being, their teaching, and their general behavior. Therefore it is quite possible to determine who is a genuine Sat-Guru.

My response: Regarding who is or is not a ‘true guru’. Yes I would agree that there are certain internal ‘barometers’ that one can rely upon to determine the possible genuineness of another’s realisation and the impact of that upon ones own state of consciousness. However in absolute terms this is quite simply not possible. We cannot second guess another persons inner state, we can only say what their effect has been on our OWN inner state. Please let us get rid of absolutes here and in the spirit of Faqir Chand admit our state of ‘unknowingness’. If we are going to play the ‘experience’ hand then is this our correspondents ‘experience’? I can say that I believe certain teachers I have spent time with to be ‘enlightened’ because of their demeanour, state of being and general ‘vibe’ but I cannot prove this in any empirical fashion to the satisfaction of anyone else. What I can say is that this is my purely subjective realisation and nothing else.

Who am I wrote:

Nick is attempting to imply that the dualistic Radha Soami teachings and the R.S ."inner stages of light/sound", are somehow proceeding towards the "non-dual state of oneness". This notion is flat-out incorrect.

My Response: Why does our correspondent have such a desire to state that others are incorrect with the implied assumption that he is correct? Please could you or anyone else explain the passages in Kabir, Nanak, Shiv Dayal Singh, Ravidas, Namdev and the Adi Granth and Gurmat Siddhant (Philosophy of the Masters) by Sawan Singh that state quite clearly that the goal of Sant mat is for the ‘drop’ to merge back into the ‘ocean’ and that said ocean is an unqualified state of ‘oneness’, or the ‘One’ behind the ‘many’, or that the ‘One Lord pervades all’.

Indeed Kabir is at a loss to explain this undivided state by saying,’ If I say it is one then that implies two and that is blasphemy. He is what he is says Kabir after profound thought’. Sant mat is everything about realising that one pervading consciousness, it is not flat out incorrect as this correspondent states. I totally stand by my comments that this represents a fundamental misunderstanding of Sant mat and the goal of it’s realisations. Have we been studying the same Sant mat teachings all these years? It’s your problem if you wish to see Sant mat as inherently and only dualistic and focussed on inner phenomena instead of being about realisation of the ‘one’ behind the ‘many’.

Who am I wrote: As I have stated elsewhere, it would be wise for commenters to be truly knowledgable and educated about a particular issue, before making assertions and judgements which have no basis in fact.

My Response: Can we assume that you are truly knowledgeable and that others are not? Is this not a conceit? Who knows who is and who isn’t? Do you have the monopoly on facts regarding Sant mat and how it sits in regard to other teachings? Of course not, your stance is one that is untenable and based on invective not the ‘facts’ which no one knows absolutely.

Who am I wrote:
To justify your criticism of Self-realization, you imply that people are so unintelligent or incapable that all they can handle is some mild guru-bhakti and simple meditation. The fact of the matter is that, blind guru-bhakti and a little mantra meditation will not result in the liberated state of Self-knowledge.

My Response: How can it be stated so categorically that these shabda practices will not yield Self Knowledge? The fact that they may not have done so for you does not mean they will not do so for others. Guru bhakti is not always blind. In some cases maybe, but not for others! Why do you have to deal with absolutes in your obviously embittered assaults on Sant mat?

I stand by the comment that advaita philosophy actually generates the practices of Self enquiry and in general terms is considerably more intellectually rigorous to understand than guru bhakti and mantra meditation.

Nowhere did I say that people are too stupid as you negatively implied. My point is that many seekers ‘desire’ for devotion places them in a position of firstly seeking in AN OTHER before looking inwards as per the previously stated comment by Ramakrishna, ‘I would rather taste sugar than be sugar’.

Try reading any of the non dual teachings of Krishnamurti and you will find them extremely difficult to appreciate and act upon. What I am arguing is that many seekers disposition and general conditioning places them in a position of seeking THAT in another first before turning the eye of contemplation inwards.

Yes quoting endless teachers and philosophies is pointless and does have nothing to do with ones subjective and internal realisations. However my point in flagging up names such as Kabir and Nanak is to state again quite unequivocally that Sant mat teachings are based around the realisation of ‘oneness’ and for the apparent ‘drop’ of consciousness to merge back into its ‘source’. Any other reading of the basic ground and goal of Sant mat is selected, prejudiced and distorted and is more about a desire to hold fast to a flat out quashing of Sant mat than to hold to any questionable ‘facts’.

Regarding Paul Brunton. Is Who am I any more of an authority on PB than me? Please refute the fundamental philosophical issue that Paul Brunton had with advaita claims of absolute non dual union being attainable? You do not wish to engage in philosophical wrangling? This is what this correspondence is all about! The practice of Self enquiry may not be separated from its philosophical underpinning in advaita and hence is open to criticism, as are the presumed ‘results’ or experiences of such enquiry.

Can you be sure that PB did not speak from experience of his own subjective realisation? In PB’s biography, his son (and biographer) clearly states his belief that PB did attain Self realisation in his later years. This was backed up by the opinion of one of the Shankaracharyas of India who believed Brunton to be a ‘holy man’ towards the end of his life. Yes PB did regard Ramana very highly but still had philosophical criticisms of the advaita teachings that Ramana embodied (or had foisted on him in an attempt to understand and bracket him we may conjecture?).

Please do not dismiss philosophy as merely intellectual verbiage. For Brunton it was much more along the lines of a vigorous questioning of claims for inner knowledge and the limits of such inner knowledge. Brunton summed up the inner quest and its results in the phrase ‘agnostic piety’ in that yes, TRANSCENDENT STATES and NON DUAL STATES may be realised, but what those states are in and of themselves or what that ABSOLUTE STATE is towards which they point, remain total MYSTERIES.

Please do not keep denying the close link between pure atma vichara (Self enquiry) and the philosophical structure that underpins and informs it. That is like saying the practice of the Tai Chi form owes nothing to Taoism, whereas the Taoist teachings fully permeate every subtle move of this Chinese martial art.

I am not trying to bolster my criticism of Self enquiry by making reference to the vegetarianism issue. What I would suggest is that the stream of adherence to vegetarianism is much more unequivocal and more plainly stated in Sant mat than in many other traditions I have come across. Witness the very wishy washy stance of Theravada Buddhism where if the animal has not been specifically killed for my consumption then it is acceptable to eat it.

My central point is that the basic ‘position’ of some in the non dual fold (and it is really irrelevant whether this pertains to Who am I or not) can lead to perspectives and practices that are possibly dubious and questionable. Sant mat teachings and practices and philosophical stances are NOT the only ones that are questionable. All systems and techniques are just that, method! They are not indentifiable with the subjective internal realisation itself. My point in all this is that Sant mat method is absolutely no more or less open to criticism than any other method.

I do not believe I have got my aims and targets mixed up at all. If a correspondent is consistently going to attack Sant mat and offer what is believed (in his or her subjective opinion) to be a more complete and experientially superior practice (Self enquiry) then that in itself is completely open to criticism. So are the various exponents and adherents of such a non dual stance. Simply put, if Who am I is going to carpet bomb Sant mat then it can be expected the same can be done to any and all philosophical stances and methods. Please do not deny that Self enquiry is method rooted in an underlying philosophical assumption. That is my main and repeated point in the whole of this response.

Please do not patronise other correspondents with your presumed notion that they do not understand what they are discussing. I am well aware that the non dual stance is about ‘being’ and not ‘doing’. The fact is that ultimately Self enquiry is still ‘doing’ and represents more ‘method’ and hence cannot be inherently superior to any other ‘method’. Method does not compass the very throne of the divine. It is what it is, a groping in the dark to realise something transcendent and ‘spiritual’.

I am going to name drop as I don’t have a problem with checking my subjective assumptions and experiences against those of others. Adyashanti is said to be a realised non dual teacher. He experienced ‘awakening’ after 15 years of sustained Zazen meditation. He then turned round and said that ‘awakening’ is purely spontaneous and not reliant on method. How much method can facilitate it is left open to question?

What I am questioning in Self enquiry is not so much the method itself, but Who am I’s assertion, “Self-realization is the loss of ignorance through one's awakening into true Knowledge”. Is that your living experience then? If not it is merely conceptual and a statement of belief. In any case if it does result from real introspection then it is your purely subjective realisation and understanding of interior states. Anyone can go around making such glib statements such as ‘I am the Self’ and ‘Self realisation is such and such’.

Soamiji criticises the position of some of these Gyani’s in Sar Bachan by saying that they cannot even sit still in meditation for five minutes without becoming restless.

Response to Who am I on three more points
A.)Nick originally wrote, "there are problems with the non dual approaches and they are not the be all and end all they are cracked up to be."

Who am I responded:
Is that right? This judgement would necessarily require that Nick has actual direct experience of Self-knowledge and Self-realization, which to my view, he clearly does not. Therefore, how could Nick know that the "non-dual approaches" "are not the be all and end all they are cracked up to be", if he has not engaged the sadhana of Self-inquiry to its completion ? Answer: He does not know.

My simple response is how do you know that I don’t know? That is nothing more than arrogance and conceit. Likewise I do not know your subjective inner state. That’s it period! My point is that you cannot presume superiority for Self enquiry over Shabd yoga because you do not seem to have concurrently practised both to their highest avowed ends. Therefore you are equally completely unjustified in making value judgements over what ‘method’ does and does not lead to greater inner realisations.

Your whole tone throughout is testament to your completely inadequate realisation of anything so basic as love being the supreme beginning and end of Self realisation. Whence else the desire to be so right where others are ‘incorrect’, ‘ignorant’, ‘full of hot air’, and so many other negatively hostile invectives peppered throughout your responses. If these can be applied to such deluded nitwits such as me and anyone else who points out that nobody has the last word on ultimate reality, then they can quite as easily be applied to yourself.

I freely admit my own ‘unloving ness’ and hence can recognise it clearly in another. So let’s be honest and accept that none of us are there yet (wherever and whatever that is) and that ‘method’ of any kind can only take us so far on the journey inwards.

My further point is that Self enquiry, (as yet another method), has its drawbacks and valid critiques which are every bit as valid as those you seem to feel can only be applied to Sant mat. Do you have any inner experience of what shabd or nada are in their essence? Likewise, I suspect not! You don’t know either! Tit for tat!

Who am I wrote:
Who says the "duality of Sant mat is more practical for most people" ? That is merely your one opinion. The truth of the matter is, that the mind of duality is the cause of all ignorance, suffering, fear, mis-indentification, and separation. Moreover, the idea that duality was "adopted by the guru's" is also totally relative and mere conjecture. What Guru's ? Which Guru's ? And who says they "adopted" "duality". And are these so-called "guru's" you are referring to, true and genuine Guru's ? Nick's comment is just another fabrication based upon un-related and un-substantiated opinions.

My Response:

Equally it is your opinion that the duality of Sant mat is not more practical for people. More opinion, and yours is not more valid than mine. Both are completely and utterly throw away. Remember that I am the devil’s advocate to stem your tide of negativity towards all things Sant mat. I do not hold hard and fast to my conjectures, but at least I recognise my conjectures for what they are instead of trying to pass them off as ‘Self knowledge’ in a generally superior tone.

Is it correct that duality is the cause of all suffering? Is this a universal TRUTH that applies at all times for all people under all circumstances? Is that our correspondents living experience or more prattling of non dual dogma? I have met many Christians who have been firmly rooted in a dualistic stance in their relation to things eternal, and yet they have demonstrated tremendous spirit, grace and fortitude in the face of difficulties. Their stance helped them cope with some fundamental life problems and see them through to happier times.

It is fundamentally not dualism that is the source of suffering, nor any other philosophical stance, but simply how one responds to any given life situation. As one of the archbishops of Canterbury said, ‘Wisdom is the ability to cope’. Therefore to make glib statements that dualism is the cause of suffering is an enormous and sweeping generalisation.

Yes my statements about the ‘guru’s is complete speculation, given that nobody knows why they ultimately adopted the stances they did. For readers gratification I was referring to the shabd based lineages of the Sikh guru’s and forerunners such as Kabir and Ravidas etc. I think it would have been better phrased that these guru’s have used some dualistic assumptions to support progress towards a state of oneness. Please do not insult any readers’ intelligence that the goal of Sant’s is not that of ‘oneness’. The Adi Granth is full of references to the ‘drop’ merging into the ‘ocean’ (I have already laboured this point at least two times but want to hammer it home).

How do you know that the gurus of the Sikh lineage were not enlightened? How do you know whether or not Kabir and Nanak were enlightened? Given that nobody ultimately can know another’s subjective state for sure I would conjecture that the reports of their reported realisations in their writings are just as reliable as the testimony and confession of such sages as Sri Ramana.

Ultimately I don’t know any more than you do! Please do not give the impression over and over again that you know and that others do not when the brutal truth is that none of us know for sure ABSOLUTELY. Therefore your implied opinions that perhaps these shabd based gurus (of course) are not ‘true’ gurus are just as baseless and unsubstantiated as mine!!!

Who am I wrote:
Nick wrote: " Sant mat meditation and devotion can and do work in transporting one from suffering and duality into more expanded and steady states of being." - and - "It all depends how you go about it and with what maturity, intelligence and compassion you bring to it."
Response: If that were true, then you would have a fair number of satsangis who are free from "suffering" and who are "into more expanded and steady states of being." Maybe Nick knows some satsangisa like that, but I have seen none.

My response: How do you know someone else’s interior state? You do not know anyone else’s state of freedom from suffering. My conjecture is based on my own subjective realisation and the statement that any ‘method’ is as good as any other and from contact with some satsangi’s in the UK. Lets state it again, Self enquiry cannot categorically be demonstrated to be superior to Shabd yoga or to Zazen or Sufi Zikr or Catholic contemplative prayer. What are into here? League tables of what is the best or which gurus are the best? How puerile! Ultimately nobody knows and so any method that leads away from suffering in the practitioners own subjective experience has got to be useful and worthwhile!

I can confirm to readers that I have met large numbers of practitioners of Self enquiry and Sant mat and amongst neither set can it clearly be determined who may or may not have realised interior states of freedom. Certainly the practitioners of Self enquiry do not in my experience manifest to any greater degree, the spiritual graces of love, tolerance, compassion and freedom from narcissitic obsessions than do the followers of Sant mat.

Again I would question why you wish to single out satsangis or followers of Sant mat for your criticism? What is the underlying motivation in all this? Readers already know some of my speculations on this issue! Why not bang on about the inadequacies of Zen students, or the lack of devotion of Sufi followers? Why are you so obsessed with Sant mat and its perceived drawbacks? Please spare us the refrain that you are disillusioning people of their ‘blind’ beliefs? Who are you to judge? If this is part of your motivation then why don’t you start on the Christians next, and then the Muslims and then the Buddhists? There’s a whole world out there of faulty doctrines and befuddled spiritual practitioners just waiting to be relieved of their illusory burden and suffering!

Who am I said:
Nick wrote: "....Ramana Maharshi and the Shabd yoga master Sawan Singh." ....."Very very few can start off with the ‘right’ orientation to begin with as we are so externally driven, and hence that necessitates the outer guru for most seekers"Response: Nick has here mentioned Ramana Maharshi and Sawan Singh in the same breath, in the same context, and such a comparison is fairly misleading. These two individuals are very very different. The teaching of Sri Ramana Maharshi is not the same as the teaching of Sawan Singh (which he merely acquired from his guru, Jaimal Singh).
Sri Ramana was a fully enlightened Sage (Jnani) who abided in profound Self-knowledge.

My response:
How do you know that Sawan Singh only ‘merely aquired’ a transmission from his guru and did not internally realise it for himself? Again you do not know (neither do I!) and have strayed into arrogance and presumption yet again!
There is a passage in ‘Spiritual Gems’ by Sawan Singh, where he states that the way he ‘won his way inside’ to self realisation is by shabd yoga. Thus Sawan Singh made a confession of his inner realisation as did Sri Ramana.
Sri Ramana’s state is your own subjective opinion! I would agree with it but still recognise it as my subjective opinion. None of this can be proved ultimately (more Agnostic devotion here!). Please do not respond with the non dual platitude that there are no others and no subjective states. It cannot be proven categorically that what you are saying is the TRUTH. You believe it to be so based on your subjective experience, as do I!

The reason I mentioned both teachers in the same breath is that they were contemporaries who drew large numbers of followers from rural India and from the west. They are quite pertinent in our discussion of the relative merits of shabd yoga and self enquiry as these were their respective methods.

Who am I wrote:
As a matter of unargueable fact, Sant Mat dogma (Swamiji in Sar Bachan) falsely criticises all other paths such as Jnana, Buddhism, Advaita, and both the dualism of the vedic Vaishnavaism, and the non-dualism of the vedic Shaivism and Brahmanism to be quite 'inferior' and of 'a lower plane'. This reveals this particular ignorant and unenlightened false negative bias which is promoted by Sant Mat and subscribed to by its various proponents. None of those who criticise Self-realization and Jnanis (like Sant Mat does), have any first-hand knowledge or direct experience of that which they are criticising. It is simply a bunch of talk, by those who do not know.

My response:
How do you know that Sant mat makes false criticisms? How do you know for sure that this is negative and unenlightened? How do you know for sure that the Sant mat point of view articulated by Soamiji is not correct? You do not know and neither do I! How do you know that Soamiji did not speak out of experience of the inner states of Jnana yoga and that he then experienced something he believed to be higher?

The fact is that Soamiji claimed Sant mat to be higher in it’s realisations than Jnana or advaita. The equal fact is that you claim superiority (in terms of depth and reach and practicality of realisation) for the non dual teaching, in the vein of Da Free John and Ken Wilber (if you do not like being compared to other pundits then tough! These commentators have approximately the same view as yourself in my estimation! Of course I admit I could be wrong which, is something you seem incapable of doing!)

Is the simple fact not one of UNKNOWINGNESS! Are you any more or less biased and ignorant than those you criticise? You should admit the possibility that the Sant mat point of view (as formulated by Soamiji) may be correct, just as I admit the possibility that non dual teachings may be superior and better for the seeker.

Interested readers should consult the Neural Surfer (David Lane) for a full exploration of this issue in his, ‘Enchanted Land’ book on the net.


Who am I stated.
Nick wrote: "Ramana’s realisation occurred at age 17 through a profound dichotomy and dissociation between body and mind (Self).Response: Yes generally, but there is one significant error in your terminology. "Mind" is not the Self. The Self is pure consciousness.

My response:
I knew you would bring me to task on this one, which is why I left it in! Paul Brunton (aforementioned Ramana devotee) was of the opinion that all is MIND (the teaching of idealism or Mentalism). There are thus differing manifestations of this overarching one MIND. Brunton used the terms MIND, Self or Overself interchangeably as ultimately they are all WORDS pointing towards something greater. You are getting hooked on technical niceties of definition instead of hearing the meaning behind my comments!

Who am I stated:
Nick wrote: "...he realised he was the animating Self within the body.."
Response: This is incorrect. According to Sri Ramana's own testimony, he never considered the Self to be "within the body". He clearly indicated many times, that the Self was pure Consciousness and not inside the body. He clearly indicated that all thoughts, perceptions, body, and false-ego (ahamkara) are within the mind, which is within the Self. The Self is not contained within a body, or within anything.

My response:
As you seem to love saying that other people are ‘incorrect’ then I am going to start playing. You clearly have no idea that Ramana also indicated that the location of the Self within the body is at the right side of the chest two digits below the breast bone. Thus he gave a physical locus for a non physical state or realisation. This is one of the apparent paradoxes in his teaching. In his atma vichara he urged seekers to plunge inwards towards the source of the Self located at the right side of the chest. Many commentators have yet to get to the bottom of what he meant by giving a physical locus to a universal state.

Who am I commented:
Nick wrote: "...as he was so absorbed in inner communion with the Self."Response: "The Self" is not only "inner". Sri Ramana was not so much "absorbed in inner communion", as he was steadily abiding as the Self. The idea of "inner communion" has a slight dualistic tone. This is the problem. People trying to describe the state and/or realization of a Sage, without having any direct experience of Self-knowledge themselves.

My response:

Anyone has difficulty describing their own subjective realisations let alone those of others. Yes it sounds dualistic. Do you have the direct experience so as to be able to understand Sri Ramana’s state better than other commentators?

Who am I wrote:
How does Nick know whether Sri Ramana would "leave the body consciousness" ? The fact is that you do not know. A true Jnani such as Ramana Maharshi, abides in the awakened state, which is inclusive of all other states. It is highly likely that Sri Ramana did not leave body consciousness, although it may have appeared so from the view of outsiders.

My response:
The equal fact is that you do not know that he did not do this! How do you know what Jnani’s are like in essence? Are you one of them? Are you not repeating dogma just as much as any devotee of Sant mat repeats their dogma and just as much as Catholic devotees speculate on the love of their saints?

The simple agnostic truth is that you do not know for sure! You have a set of experiences that you suggest to be the TRUTH and so do I.

I merely repeat the approximate statement of his condition as given by some devotees at the time (Brunton included). Please be honest in stating that your conjecture is no more valid than mine. It is all a case of how you word it. Words do not fit an inner experience, whether of ones own or another’s.

Who am I commented:
Nick wrote: "All of this is highly analogous to the intent and goal of sant mat spiritual practices".Response: Absolutely and positively not true. The intent and goal of Sant Mat is described very very differently from that of Self-realization, and in fairly dualistic terms and orientation. It is foolish to try to fabricate some similarity or commonality. The basic premise, and the basic strategy, is very different between the two. The goal of Sant Mat is not clearly delineated or defined, other than a vague sense of reaching the higher plane of Sach Khand and reposing in the "lap of the Sat Purush". Such babble sounds attractive to the unawakened, but it is too much like religious mythology, cosmology, and dogmatic belief, for my sense of reality.


My response:

Who are you to deal in absolutes? Do you know more in all recorded history than any other poor mortal? How do you know for sure that the avowed goal of Sant mat is not oneness and for the ‘drop’ to merge in the ‘ocean’? How can you prove that the basic premise and strategy are different? You cannot prove this and neither can I!

What on earth were Kabir, Namdev, Dadu, Paltu, Dariya and Nanak and Sawan Singh talking about when they said that the Lord is absolute Oneness and that merging back into the source of light and sound and all manifestation is the goal of spirituality? It is there in their writings for any one to see! It’s up to you if you choose not to see it!

Listen to your own babble mate! Your unkind invectives do not do a job of convincing anyone of the assumed superiority of your views. They are simple and clear testimony that you don’t know what you are talking about with any ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY any more than me or any other visitor to this site.

Just because you have an axe to grind about Sant mat and have some outstanding personal grievances (probably because of what are seen as wasted years following what are to you untenable dogmas and total lack of inner experience) do not assume that you now know better than others and have discovered a superior point of view. For that’s what it is ultimately, just another point of view in the face of eternity!

Is it foolish to search for commonality in a fragmented world? Is that not the essence of holism or are you more content to sit and grind your Sant mat axe and prepare your next stream of derogatory comments about the path. Isn’t it foolish to assume that ones point of view is necessarily superior without any conclusive evidence to back it up? We are all in the same boat of UNKNOWINGNESS, whether we like it or not!

Some pundits and teachers have flagged up the important role that mythology and cosmology have to play in facilitating inner transformation (witness Joseph Campbell) and that ultimately mythic language is all we have for describing that which cannot be described.

Who am I wrote:
Nick wrote: "...the seeker is not to stay hooked on inner plane phenomena but to press on to the non dual state of Oneness..." Response: If that is really true, then why bother with "inner plane phenomena" at all ? This is my point. Sant Mat and RSSB is riddled with contradictions which confuse, mislead, and distract people from the spiritual enlightenment of awakening to Who they really are, and what true Self-realization is reallly all about. The inner planes are nothing but a virtual labyrinth of duality, illusion, and mind, which can all be overcome in an instant, through the awakening of Self-knowledge.

My response:

Inner plane phenomena can be used a means of negotiation and that is all. You can go from Birmingham to London (in the UK where I am from) direct via the M6 motorway and see no nice scenery on the way, or you can go round the houses on the bypasses and see plenty of nice countryside. Either way you end up in London. This would be my analogy for shabd paths versus non dual paths. Would you also argue that everything in the physical world is simply illusory mind stuff? That is what the teaching of Mentalism states. Then please don’t ever go to a nice beach or forest or mountain range again for your delectation and pleasure as these are simply misleading mind stuff!

Please don’t play the experience card yet again. You don’t have experience of the merging into the source of shabd spoken of by the Sants so therefore you cannot state CATEGORICALLY that the non dual route is better!

Who am I wrote:
Nick seems to be doing nothing more than parroting the same old Sant Mat / RSSB dogma. I would respect his opinions and theories aa bit more, if he spoke from his own direct experience and knowledge, and not simply resort to same old second-hand opinions and notions that all the other blind followers of RSSB try to use as supposedly valid arguments. The best thing to do is not to waste your time foolishly defending RSSB, but simply apply yourself to real Self-inquiry, and realize true Self-knowledge and enlightenment in your very own case. Then you won't need to subscribe to, believe in, or argue about, anything. You will have direct tacit experience of the awakened state of Self-knowledge.

My response:
How do you know for sure where I speak from? How do you know that my views do not arise from sustained and long standing introspection? How do you know that I am parroting second hand views? I would respect your views more if they weren’t sustained so much by your personal issues with Sant mat and your overtly hostile stance to this particular teaching. Who are you to say who is blind or who isn’t? Are you up there with Jesus in saying we will all fall into the ditch? I’ll join you there mate!

Why are you equally wasting your time with continuous and sustained attacks against a teaching that you manifestly have no inner experience of whatsoever? If you have got the inner experience of the sants and the bliss of shabd they speak of then why did you leave Sant mat?

So long as mean minded detractors continue to mash down others faith and feelings in cyberspace then there will be thorns in your flesh like me to contend with! The day we can all meet and discuss as students of a hundred schools in a caring and supportive manner, then perhaps we will both stop wasting our time?!!

Clearly you do not have any experience of the shabd path in its essence so don’t play that card with me! For me I do not give a stuff about defending Sant mat per se, what aggrieves me is the total lack of humility and compassion manifest in your views and of so many other RSSB detractors! Why not simply say, ‘well it’s not for me any more’ and move on. Why not say, ‘So long and thanks for all the fish’ a la Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy?

Why do you have to vent your spleen so much in such an unkind way? It doesn’t take a degree in psychology to see that you have ‘issues’ with Sant mat and that these are not to do with higher spiritual discernments, but are to do with the muck and dirt of personal disappointment, blame, frustration and sense of betrayal. Why not come clean and admit all this dirty laundry instead of hiding behind a smokescreen of a now assumed higher and better realisation.


Who am I wrote:

Nick wrote: " The facts are that we do not truly know what sort of universe we are inhabiting."Response: Perhaps you yourself do not know, but those who have awakened into Self-knowledge do know. Of course I disagree on both statements. But first, the simple answer: There is NO "something", and there is NO "nothing". There is neither a "something", nor is there a "nothing". Both are mere dualistic mental constructs. Reality transcends the illusion and mystery of duality.

My further response:
What kind of arrogant garbage is this!? Congratulations, you have the secret to LIFE, THE UNIVERSE AND EVERYTHING that no other mortal has ever attained! Even the great Socrates admitted at the end of his life that he did not know the why and wherefore of the universe. This is the distinction between true knowledge (which is to admit that one does not know- Divine ignorance!) and the posturing of assuming one can ‘know’ anything for certain about things ABSOLUTE.

Please then answer the following questions (OR quote some sage who does know) with ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY once and for all time!

Regarding the universe and our place in it:

1. Why is there something rather than nothing ?
2. Did this something have any ultimate beginning or has it always been?
3. If it had a beginning what was there before the beginning?
4. What is any single thing in itself in its ultimate essence?
5. Who or what am I ultimately?

Answers on a postcard please! Even the greatest of sages throughout history have had to admit defeat when confronting these biggies. That includes Sri Ramana, Socrates, Plato, Plotinus, Nanak, Kabir, Rumi and on and on!

PLEASE OH PLEASE do not dare to resort to non dual platitudes that these questions result from a sense of dualism and that they disappear in Self Realisation. What unbelievable twaddle! More conceptual bluffing! Just get on and answer them dude and stop making claims that anyone can know the why and the wherefore ASSOLUTELY!
The simple truth is that no one who has ever lived has been able to answer these to any satisfactory degree. Once again a big triumph for AGNOSTIC UNCERTAINTY!

With regards to the Ramakrishna comment about tasting sugar rather that being sugar. How do you know that it is not a universal truth? Do you know what is? The fact is that Ramakrishna alternated between a devotional dualistic bent and a non dual absorption bent. Both have extremely valid insights to bear. He didn’t stay stuck in one camp or the other but chose to articulate profound insights from both sides of the fence.

You may think that the whole Sant mat process and presumption is a waste of time. Good for you! You obviously know better than all the sants of recorded history as you know the better way! I do not dispute that starting with a non dual premise has some advantages but it is still only ‘method’ and ‘posture’. You can just as easily start off with Hatha yoga and go the distance. What I have a problem with is the inherently hinted at superiority for your current stance and posture (which will remain your subjective truth and not a universal truth).

Regarding cults
Who am I said:

The funny thing is: that no one is forcing them to follow, to believe, or to cling to anything. It is all their own ignorance (absence of Self-knowledge) which causes them to feel any need to belong to, or to believe in, anything or anyone..

My response:
‘Them’ being poor deluded and blind RSSB devotees. Who made you a self appointed cult monitor? Any type of behaviour and attitude can constitute a cult, whether it has a thousand members or only one. Most of us belong to the CULT of our own ego’s and desperate desire to be right and to put others to rights.

IN SUMMARY
I would like to sum up my argument with one more comment from Who am I and then proceed to close before bowing out. It’s holiday time here in the UK and my mission has been accomplished. I have wanted for many years to visit a website where Sant mat detractors are having their day and challenge this torrent of criticism. I feel I have now done this to some degree or other and ask that others out there take up the cudgels and not let these people trample all over others faith and disposition without giving some grief in return?!
In closing I have to say that I have tried to keep this friendly but your general attitude would test the patience of a saint.

In summary your stance is one of intolerance, arrogant presumption of ‘Self knowledge’ where others are believed not to know anything, assumed superiority of Self enquiry over shabd yoga and any other ‘method’, and a host of glib statements such as ‘dualism is the cause of suffering’. You are every bit as dogma driven as any Sant mat faithful I have ever met and just as smug in your point of view.

Please also do not presume to tell me or anyone else where you think we are at as you simply do not know! I could equally turn round and say that I am not the Self as that is not my way! How childish! These are all words (Shabd, Self, Shakti, Atma, Purush, Buddha nature). Please do not get lost in technical niceties of meaning as you perceive them. They are all words groping in the dark and pointing towards something more universal about our inherent nature and its relationship to the cosmos.

Equally I can say that you have misunderstood and misquoted me ad nauseam but it doesn’t get us anywhere!

Who am I wrote:
Reality transcends the illusion and mystery of duality.

My parting shot:

1. Sants have and do teach a path to Oneness

The sants have made this argument about duality as well as the non dual sages. Or were Kabir, Nanak, Ravidas, Namdev and all the others making it all up as they were poor deluded shabdists? The references in the Adi Granth to the one behind the many and the all pervading Lord are too many to infer that the sants did not teach a path to Oneness. That is my main issue in this overlong correspondence.

Please do not deny this any longer! If you wish to distinguish between what these sants have said and what you perceive RSSB says then I do not have an issue with that. As we can recognise though, RSSB does not encompass the totality of Sant mat anymore than Sri Ramana fully encompassed the non dual teaching.

2. Shabd yoga vs Self Enquiry – the jury is out and always will be!

Please also do not infer that the pure non dual ‘method’ of Self enquiry is superior to shabd ‘method’ in its essence. Quite simply put you are not in a position to make this value judgement (neither am I!). Equally it cannot be demonstrated that Self enquiry is inherently ‘better’ or more effective than Zazen, Sufi zikr or Catholic contemplative prayer. The last appeared to work quite well for Meister Eckhart, Teresa of Avila, Juan de la Cruz and others who practised a version of it. They were rooted in a firmly dualistic stance and yet their recorded realisations are definitely of a non dual perspective.

It cannot be demonstrated (QUITE CATEGORICALLY) what is and what is not the best ‘method’ and any ‘method’ is not THAT in itself.

3. AGNOSTIC UNCERTAINTY

Nobody alive and nobody who has ever lived has ever presented comprehensive answers with ABSOLUTE CERTAINTY to the five big questions I posed earlier. That is because nobody (not even the greatest of non dual sages or the sants) has the answer. The principle of AGNOSTIC impregnability holds true. This is a vast and unfathomable mystery we live in and to claim that anyone alive or dead has plumbed it to its full depths is plainly silly!

4. Tolerance and compassion are everything

Where is the tolerance and understanding and AGNOSTIC UNCERTAINTY in any of the views voiced by our Sant mat detractors? It is not there to any discernable degree, having been lost under the heavy mental baggage of needing to vent their spleens about any and all things Sant mat.
When the principle of AGNOSTIC UNCERTAINTY is embraced then compassion can flow. If we even slightly think we have the better way and that others are (and I quote verbatim from Who am I’s list of invectives:- ‘Incorrect, Absurd and narrow minded, Hot air blowing, Baseless, Blind’) then we are in sticky territory.

Obviously those who go throwing this stuff around at others must be full of it themselves. Takes one to know one as the classroom ditty goes! Sorry Who am I but you are speaking out of your proverbial base chakra mate! The fact that you have turned into a non dual ninny does not now mean you have the better way! Why not graciously leave others to work out their own salvation as the Buddha advised? Why not accept that Sant mat is not the path for you and leave it at that?

It is clear where all this stuff is coming from and it’s not from higher discernment and compassion. Those two leave others alone or at least help in constructive and kind ways.
RSSB and Sant mat detractors are so full of barely disguised resentment, anger, hostility and righteous indignation at the perceived waste of time their involvement with Sant mat was felt to be. I have met several such people and they all manifested the same type of aggrieved and hostile intent towards their former path.

Baseline is: you can start from anywhere and nowhere (Wicca, Non dualism, Advaita, Sant Mat, Sufism, Catholicism, Agnosticism) and ‘realise’ some profound inner truths and perhaps even universal truths.

5. Any stance and posture can exhibit CULT ivated tendencies

This applies to organisations of a million members, a thousand members or ones own subjective state with all it’s neuroses, identifications, beliefs, assumptions, value judgements, egotism, sense of right and wrong and so on and on!
Please do not look any further than your own mind with all its thoughts, words and deeds for more than ample evidence of CULT ivated tendencies!!

It may be that followers of any spiritual group can be labelled as belonging to a cult. Paul Brunton had issues with some of the higher level followers of Sri Ramana Maharshi as they effectively barred him from visiting Sri Ramanashramam towards the end of the sages life. Brunton kept good relations of affection and mutual regard with Ramana but thereafter referred to the ‘sectarian followers of Ramana Maharshi’. Thus anyone and any group can and does exhibit cultish tendencies. Contrary to Who am I’s arrogant opinion that followers do not wish to recognise the nature of the group they belong to; I am more than happy to do this but point out that this is a universal tendency and not the sole property of Sant Mat and RSSB.

Do not be so quick to judge. You have more than your own fair share of cow dung than to then go flinging it around at ‘others’.

This more comprehensive view of CULT ‘ism’ takes the sting of judgementalism out of the equation and places the critique back where it belongs; with our own nature.

Dear 'who i am'
Do you realise, you and Netemara are one and not two..and so are you and Nick..and rather all of us. So why this verbal 'duel' about duality and non duality? This site is fast becoming a useless mental exercise rather than a scientific spiritual forum for constructive discussion. We are moving away from spiritualism...Do we intend to?

yo bro going down slow!

Here Here. I think we have a couple of wannabe book authors. Been on the path since '70 and mostly It is my idea of perfection but there are many flaws I find in it. Maybe its me but when my guru Charan Singh said I would not take on Karma killing someone in 'Nam if it was on orders, I don't think Jesus would agree and I know I don't. When he said to pay your taxes because as Jesus said "give unto Ceasar what is Ceasar's...", I don't agree. Taxes pay for war, and Jesus WAS hauled before the roman court on 2 charges, one of which was preaching non payment of taxes. We have to choose to aspire to God or serve Kal. Sant Mat makes an excellent case for aspiring to God. All those following any path towards God are my brothers. Meditation and surrender is the key to Love consciousness.

i am a 25 year young guy.i read some of the monthly books from science of the soul research centre .In the beggining if felt i cant understand abt this path ,as i started reading those books that really help me a lot in many ways.i felt it help to develop a better personality.each and every word inspires me and make me think what is my final destiny.

Why do we all spend so much time moaning about other sevadars and followers? Religion is a personal thing - none of these people will be there when we die and we can hardly start complaining to 'God' about "he did this and she did that" etc... we should worry about improving ourselves and do as much research about various religions as we desire.

well...guys...all you people say is all absurd!!!!....this is a big money laundering politics on earth...ealier there were people from STATEhood who used to dupe inocents in d name of NATION...now religions are the weapons in the name of salvation...but why salvation????....cant people on earth co operate and create it a better world...see d world around...its all empty with vast tracts of land unoccupied...we just need to CONVINCE people and use resources for development here...rather than the abroad...thats next life!!!....eat drink sleep with woman around...and merry...no salvation please..!!!...its been around for over five thousand years////....bye...fuck off radha's soami!!!!...OSHO rules now!!!>>>

Ok lets get to the basics on things here.

The so called faith the "Radhaswamis"... started with a bloke called Swami Dyal Singh, his Mrs was called Radha, wot this bloke said was the purpose of this life is to make the Radha (soul) unite with its Swami (God)through meditation. Apparently the Khalsa through the guidance of its Shabad Guru (Nanak XI)Granth Sahib all ready talkd about this, heres an example from the Guru "The Gurmukh is the happy and pure soul-bride forever. She keeps her Husband Lord enshrined within her heart." Ang [limb] 31.

So what happened next was there came other individuals who succeeded "the throne" of Swami Dyal Singh. Then, suddenly it had a change indirection, the next generation of successors started adopting the Sikh form and thus a donkey dressing itself in lionskin!

This donkey deluded the animals(ignorant people) around it and the animals started following it like peter piper playing the flute. The music Peter was playing was Gurbani and enticed the mice into thinking he was the "Master" (Guru) rather than the Satguru (true guru) Granth Sahib. It plagerised material from the Satguru and claimed it as his own work - a true plagerist.

So, the ignorant and blind Sikhs of Punjab are following these so called "Masters" who are actually are thieves. These "sikhs" who do not know the value of a diamond, have left a precious diamond for a shell on a beach.

So all of the above mental mishmosh was kicked off by the illusion that the soul starts off separate from God? Yikes, this suffering-in-life could use a good editor.

Hi to every 'seeker' here. This was the first time i visited this site and to my surprize am amazed of myself as being 19 yrs old sparing time and putting up a post.

Its indeed so nice to see even the one's who think 'they follow the right path' knows so much about the other paths. I won't say religion instead of path because we all know by now that a religion is something created by humans and the right way to god is a path not a religion.

Maybe am too young to understand all this but I think religion is nothing but people following people, that also includes children following their parents.

Spirtualism is not a religion and i can bet my life for that. Its the way. Religions all over the world are MIS-INTERPREATIONS of this way.

The candles or any other things which our lit in temples, churches etc are the mis-interpretations of the actual way. The original sense in this case is the light within.

For example if i tell you something and i ask you to go and say it to somebody after half an hour...More or less the meaning of what i have told you will change.
This is the difference.
Thus there is a need of a Guru. Even if anybody reads spirtual books and follow spirtualism without a Guru he is bound to Mis-interpret the way to reach God.

There are three things which i feel i have understood till now in my life i.e.
Spirtualism or to be more precise Meditation is the one and only way.

It cannot be reached without a Guru and,

Its your choice whom you choose your Guru but there is only one real Guru Like there is only one God.

Thanks & Regards
Satvik

2 reasons I left.
1) not one person of the radha-soami satsang beas membership, who i have talked to, has 'gone within'. It simply doesn't exist.
2) many radha-soamis claim that the master (gurinder singh) is God, and therefore he should know all things. but when it comes to question/answer time, he sometimes cannot hear or understand the question. No, he is not divine.

all gurus are really liars.

all guru cults are built upon lies.

all followers of gurus and guru cults are deceived and foolish people.

all these gurus are liars and so all their answers are false.


Thanks Brian, Thanks Netemara,

Nick i agree w/ you about "who am i".

Who am i, much of your source comes from kirpal, who signed a legal document on admitting defamation of caractor so i can never believe his accounts of history.

I singh, please don't ever tell people what they should say or not say. I like hearing peoples accounts and i need it.
I've always hated that slave dogma.

Thanks Nick.

I was put on this path almost 30 years ago.

I believe in the meditation and I believe in the vegetarianism. I'm thankful for those two things.

Just from my small family I have seen vegetarianism spread in the school, the workplace and my neiborhood. And w/ it the inherant kindness.

The meditation seems to be like a kind of food or nutrition.

I don't believe anything else because there's no evidence for it and no use in it.

If you believe in destiny, you'll become a loser. It's obvious we can and do make the future.

If you believe in karma, your always believing in a reward coming. Do the right thing because it's right. There is no karma except instant karma, and we make that and can see it ojectively.

And, like someone recently said, there are no ages, golden, iron, dirt or ice cream. There are no ages.

Also, I believe in Spirit and that we can find it. "the force that drives evolution and the goal of evolution, are the same thing".

RSSB initiates who have spent most of their adult lifes following the guru can not let go of the path. They have vested too much, given up on trying to be part of society. They can not let go, too let go would be too die a horrible death in their psyche being. So they will keep on believing the lies of Sant Mat and do their best to avoid anyone or anything that would make them have to question Sant Mat. Truly, they have become people of the lie.

The people who thinks Gurus are lier, this means they do not have knowledge of sant mant.Talking about question answer session with great masters that they don't give right answers of the question. It is the narrow thinking of people that they are unable to understand the Masters. people always want some magic from Guru. But The great guru(called Shabad or God) never show magic. According to our karams we have to spent our life. The relation between us and Great master (Guru) is the relation of soul and shabad. They don't come in the world to give us small happiness just for one life, they come in the world to withdraw us from the sady world and make us happy forever.
So many sants and guru came in the world. When they are presently in the world, we never follow them. We always critice their teachings. We critice Cries, Gurunanak, Gurugobind, Swamiji, Mohammand sahib and presently critice Great master of Radha Soami. When people will read the litratures like Bible of Christian,Kuran Sreef of Muslim, Granth Sahib of Gurunank,Sarbachan of Swami Ji then they will be able to know , What is Guru,God,Shabad,Truth and Divine Melody. All these names point to one thing i.e. GOD.
One thing i would like to tell, very rare people have luck to love Great master and God.Initiation does not mean that your karmas are finished. You have to workhard to withdraw your conciousness back to the eye centre as per the Guru's instruction.
It is not the mistake of people that they are criticising Guru, It is their karmas.

When sitting in the prescence of a practicing meditation teacher whether it be Charan Singh or Gurinder Singh -one experiences bliss,happiness and joy.Their eyes beaming with the power of God. When sittng in an interview situation and talking to the master one experiences the same degree of love and limitless wisdom.

Then one thinks about how these enlightenned ones became so spiritual-the answer is through being a good disciple. And following the teachings, seems to be the recipe for success. Not being a nay sayer or negating the teachings-but living them.

Common sense seems to be the moniker of the mystics;either you are on the bus or off the bus. We have to be practical, do we want spirituality or do we want to follow the mind,ego and all the negativity that can come from an unfocussed mind. The masters say we must be positive, no matter what our fate; spirituality is caught not taught-if one wants to worship the father the father will arrange circumstance for you to worship the father.When the disciple is ready the master appears. So long live the internet,libraries,rock bands,hip hop etc-the word lives.

ALL YOU NEED IS LOVE

then with the love one can move on to self realisation
self recovery and survival......

LOVE attracts other lovers-building blocks-supports etc

This is in ref. to Nick's post of September 6, 05.

Wow, Nick. Your post gives a whole new meaning to the word articulate. I am in awe. If I were on a debate team, I'd certainly want you on my side!

Beas dera door hai jaana bhi zaroor hai satguru de pyaar ne kitta majboor hai.

..Radha Swami..

ALWAYS FAITH ON GOD & REMEMBER 'GOD IS ONE'

@Satvik
@ex-seeker

The points to be noted are the following
1)Any Master no matter how much He is "divine" would never ever make a show-off of his divinty..
So,Mr Satvik..my dear friend..The master would act as normal human being only.He would never make any one feel that he is way above others.All his senses will work as if he is simple and a very normal person to talk with..Mr Satvik.plz tell me that is ii necessary to "behave" divine to show your divinty.Well to make you very clear.the biggest asset of true divinty is modesty..The one who is "the truly divine" is simply non-existant for others.He has no reason to indulge in any kind of flamboyance

Masters behave like us.They set an example for us to be like normal persons while searching for the "path" within

2)Secondly that u hav met ppl who havn gone "inside"...plz note this fact that .it is not a cakewalk to go "inside"..it is by no means an easy task.It requires infinite toil nd blessings of the Master himself.so that a person can go"inside"
My dear friend,the proof of the pudding lies in eating..You try once urself with full determonation nd then see for urself the result.

To Varun:

Your comment is nothing but a cheap and lame excuse for avoiding the real truth that the so-caled "master" is just as human and just as ordinary as anyone.

These fakes who call themselves "masters", as well as their gullible followers as you appear to be, desire for others to blindly accept and believe - without any shred of evidence - the false notion that the master is somehow extraordinary and divine.

You and others have used this lame excuse that such an embodiment of the divine would not "ever show off" for a long time. It relies on faith and belief only. It has no scientifically proven basis.

We are told to accept and believe without question that a so-called sant mat "sant" or "master" is GIHF, that he descends from the spiritual realm and has the power to liberate souls from the domain of space, time and mortal existence.

However, there is not the least of evidence anywhere that any of the many disciples and initiates of these so-called sant mat "masters" have gained liberation and spiritual enlightenment. In fact, by and large sant mat satsangis evidence quite the contrary.

"Masters behave like us." -- Of course they do...they are no better than or more godly that anyone.

"It requires infinite toil nd blessings of the Master himself." -- Utter ignorant nonsense. You cannot know or say how it is for anyone else.

"You try once urself with full determonation nd then see for urself the result." -- More nonsense and denial. Many sadhakas have done so...and with very little or no appreciable result or realization at all.

Why is it that belief peddlers like Varun bother coming to sober-minded sites like this to push their blind faith and their dogmatic beliefs? Why don't you go to other places where you can preach your sant mat dogma to sympathetic fellow satsangi believers? Why do you insist on repeatedly trying to convince others and foist your religion on people who are just not interested because they have progressed and matured beyond it? Why don't you just go and practice your beliefs without always trying to impose them on others? What is the matter with you people?


If in the world we r here,so what here for what think we gonna take with us only our earning of shabad rest remains here and always be.rest all is big lie

Well...that clarifies things.

God has made dogs meant to bark, so they are doing their job.Some humans are born with animal instincts, you cannot blame them because they are unfortunate due their deeds.so let them do their duty and we the lucky souls, will do ours.RADHASOAMI

I thought that sant mat might be the true path, and I was attracted to Sant Thakar Singh and during my reasearch I came across some news reports in which he was accused of sexuale abuse of satsangis. And supposadly admitted it was due to the negative power trying to influence him.
Every guru I have reserched seems to have some sort of contraversy associted with him/her.
I think the worse one seems to be Sathya SAi Baba he has been accused of abusing young boys. Who knows why people follow these scum.
The true guru is GOD.I have given up on Gurus and look directly to god,forget all the fakes.
In the words of shrishivabalayogi:

"Your proper and regular meditation is the only source of day-to-day peace,
bliss, prosperity and happiness. Meditation becomes easy if practiced for an hour daily.
All the doubts are dissolved, questions resolved and all the problems of life are
solved by meditation." ~Sri Swamiji

Please note he does not push any doctrine or Guru worship. He suggests you find out the truth for your self by the above practice. I have decided to follow his advice implicitley.


It was nice to read all the comments (it took me more than 2 hours). My simple conclusion is that one should follow a path in spirituality that you have faith in. Not everyone(myself included)can study all different lines in spirituality and moreover even those who manage to do that may not be any wiser. I dont believe disciples of Jesus, Nanak, Bhudha, or Kabir had any means to do extensive search or research in this field and they have fared OK by using faith and common sense.
Regards.

The Radha Soami (sound current) system is a very different system than the Tibetan Buddhist system. If you choose either one of these 2 systems and devote yourself to thier meditation method and if you have good Teachers you can make progress. Both have their organizational structure since both have huge number of followers.

Just a kind word to all of you...since when can an ant fully understand a man?...if you can explain and categorize "It", then look somewhere else, for it cannot be the absolute...the Absolute spans out within many dimensions,with no definitive boundaries such as you percieve, most unknown to any of you, or me for that matter...as to a science? of the soul? of the physical universe? of your own self righteous fabrications of mind spurred on by ridiculous emotions? Arguing points both lame and mute, without even a grain of sand of understanding...ask yourselves questions such as these...do you know how your refrigerator runs? Do you comprehend the magnetic rotation of the earth? do you truly love? do you know the meaning of the word?...if you answered "yes", you've done what all poets throughout the ages have never been able to understand or define...love,that is...in it's depths is the mystery... in it's absolute is its smallness and in it's failure to offer up it's treasure you all need look no farther than your pitious bantering of that which you all know nothing about...if you did, then you wouldn't banter...It is not a matter of dispute...within the mysterious confines of the heart of everyman it lies either dormant or somewhat alive...you should stop berating others of which you know so little if anything, and start kindling the flame inside you. as it grows you will see ...if nothing else, the folly of all this incessant bantering. you all sound like third graders discussing quantum physics, having glimpsed the book cover one time...one of you saw the blue cover...another saw the orange leaflets, another saw the graphics on the cover, and still another saw NOTHING AT ALL!!!!! Yet you speak so tiringly of the "exterior book", never knowing what is in the pages...by the way, the imaginary book i am using for example purposes, has unlimited infinite pages...each one different...If you do not learn to seperate the differing perspectives of the cover, how can you adequately read the the content within the pages, and God forbid, what a controversy that would set off ...one of you reading page 81 and accepting that as the "truth", another of you see page 875 as the truth, and still another never got past the foreward, stopping there and seeing that as the ultimate!!! Imagine what a debate that would set off!!!!! In closing if you don't understand how your refrigerator runs, i suggest you revamp your perspective of truth, as all of life runs off the same ptternistic realities and to a wise man well, electricity, in all its applications is mere child's play, as is electro-magnetism as is the differing perspectives of the thought forms of you minds which all of you on the sight are somewhat unaware of, judging by your bantering....the present is but the many different configurations of the absolute spirit manifesting upon this lower potential of vibrational matter, of which we percieve of as material or physical.In it's higher vibrational manifestation it would have a vibrational harmonic so to speak...at least i would assume, and remember always please, that god shines on the saint and the sinner alike...take time being joyous, not finding fault, and wasting the negative emotions on such a dismal undertaking as arguing about something that in the future you will see was just a tedious exercise in cutting off the thing you all have been discussing, the reality of love and of the spirit....Peace always...thank you

Bob, I can't help but ask:

You urge others to stop discussing, stop criticizing, stop bantering, stop berating.

Reading your comment, it sure sounds like you're discussing, criticizing, bantering, and berating.

So, what am I really being asked to do? In truth, not in words.

Bob--- (1) would you consider hitting that ol' return key on your keyboard twice every now and then (paragraphs, Bob, paragraphs).

(2) Also I am curious about "wasting the negative emotions"......?? So, are we to save them for something (or someone)special?

(3) Finding out how my refrigerator runs is pretty simple compared to finding out how RSSB is run.

(4) And if one truely loves?, I believe that is best appreciated through the feedback/response we get from life right now and right next to us, from all life that is close to us....dogs, cats, birds, kids, spouse, parents, teachers, coworkers, etc. They are our reality check.

We may think of ourself as quite the lover, but maybe few around us share our self-congratulatory opinion. Life around us--- THAT feedback is smarter (for example)than our besotted crooning over a guru that lives half a world away. I have seen "lovers of the Lord" that croon well and have even claimed fantastic meditation-induced journeys, but (alas)they didn't note, nor ask, how those around them felt about them. Maybe they were afraid to.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

To Brian,
Dear Brother, so it is in your eyes that I myself am bantering criticizing and such..it is how you see it, because you do not adequately understand the causepoint of your perception, causing my reaction. It really is that simple...and although my first correspondence with Charan Singh dates back to 1980,& is why I have never sought initiation, nor will i be pulled into such pointless pursuit of such fruitless activities as i see on this website.....I feel you would grow much quicker and straighter if you stopped analyzing the pointed finger, arm and elbow that the zen masters tell you of and looked to what was being pointed to, you would do much better, and have ONE HELLUVA (oops! am I allowed to say helluva?)OK, whatever you want to make of it...let's say Angelic good time. in any and with all due respects to wherever i see you folks all at in various degrees, let us not forget that the mozaic of life we see is in essence the outward manifestation of the architecture of our thoughts...as we journey into our more subtle aspects of our thoughts we cannot bypass the religious training we all have recieved as well as the taboos and graces we all ASSUME without great difficulty!!!!! and are programmed to think are in essence reality...to get past this point is one of the hardest things one can ever do, if ,as i have come to possibly accept, it is even possible to do without translation from this very plane via what man calls death...i myself think of it as graduation, but that is just me, and i will state it arises much more in me particularly, from my life and it's many strange experiences of unbelieveable grace and luck, mixed with excruciating hard times, than anything remotely conducive to a fraternal society, which in essence led me to the correspondence with Charan Singh, not as an outgrowth of it.
Frankly, I have no reason to banter with any of you, nor will i waste my time...I understand where some of you are at, as i myself have been there myself...i personally moved on because, frankly, I couldn't stand myself or the myopic place my attention regressed to by giving undue attention to that which is assuredly just a manifestation of the ego in all its idiocy.
Once you turn whatever key is in the lock waiting only for you to give a gentle turn, you yourself will have a good belly laugh, and the ego will diminish its hold on you, as you realize its strangulating influence upon your development...the thing I see, and its just my opinion---no money back guarantee--with all of this sight, is the overwhelming neccessity for all of you to be "right"...you see i don't care if I'm right or wrong, I have nothing to defend and quite frankly no interest in defending it...does the sun, for instance need your consent to shine?...Do the squirrels and the birds ask your permission to gather nuts and take wing to the air? will the Lord God beg your consent to remove you from this sphere of activity?...In essence then, what is your need to be right?...a mere illusion...However, please do not misunderstand what i am merely trying to convey, and understand fully well that I refuse the spaghetti strands of your psychic emotional tentacles in instigating the challenge of bantering ...OK, now I am berating, I am doing this or this...the challenge is seen and rebuffed by yours truly...NO...I wasn't doing that. I was merely, expressing myself and offering a bit of insight that possibly if adequately contemplated upon might help free you and others like you who are trapped in the labyrinth of intellectual speculation of holy men, their deeds, the chicanery of the rogues, the virtue of the real and all other fabrications of the mind you are, quite honestly lost in...It's OK by me though, as if you wish to stay there, keeping joy out of your life, to the extent you debate issues that really are impertinent,it's certainly OK by me. however i fully understand that you must go through it...if only to eventually see the futility of the whole thing...we all must...and all in good time will we finally see the key in the lock just waiting for a gentle turn...believe me...will the joy be overwhelming...You will have belly laughs for days as you see the way the ego keeps you chained to yourself, and God knows the torture you have endured, the meticulous research, the hours of agonizing, the fears the ego run amuck making you an asshole bastion of self righteousness, and possibly alienating many dear loved ones and friends...yes I know that, because i have done just that myself...to my Chagrin!!...Sant Mat's fault? or your fault? Or is it just the obvious effect of breaking up the fallow ground? One thing for sure, i will state as I (hopefully) have learned...(as i learn everything...the hard way...) it is not Sant Mat's fault. Everyone seeks out a sage or guru for their own particular reasons, not a one having any idea what a guru or a sage in actuality is or might be...they are led to the Master of whatever yogic or spiritual system that they find a resonance with due to certain disatisfaction with life, pain that causes them to seek, or a weird amalgamation of things...all wrong, as if common sense serves me right, none of us ever sought out a guru to understand why it was that we were so gifted or divine that we could part the red sea or turn water into wine and merely wished to "check in with the other "man angels" on the planet for briefing....In any event, we first see the guru within the confines of our own muddied vision...which is of course not accurate...if we had clear vision, frankly as the guru would be the first to state, we don't need him in the first place and of course we would probably have manifested an experience in a completely different place than Earth ( I've spent many a long hour trying to understand why i ever came to this planet in the first place! (Ha!)though i will be the first to say that "yes", Earth does have it's moments!...great moments in which we can experience love, joy and merriment, to go along with the usual decadence, horrors, cancers, death, gut wrenching sorrow and of course as we are all now living thru, needless war and strife...strange planet anyway one slices it...What i think i have found is that the essential way we see the guru being characteristically wrong, we somehow hang onto, until it becomes a nuisance, a point that causes us to lose sleep, a thing we will spend hours debating with ourselves and any other person who will listen until, we realize that all we are trying to do is justify an erroneous place on the path that we need to get over, so to speak...much like war, we will get over it only when we are fed up and sickened by it, and thus sense the futility of such endeavor...possibly, hopefully burning Karma in the process as well as seeing the limitations of our mind and intellect. Please keep in mind that by seeking any legit spiritual path that one is not buying into a fraternity that say, for instance, ol' dad was a Sigma, Alpha epsilon, so therefore i will automatically achieve privilaged status, far and above the catholic, the bhuddist, or even the atheist.
Truth is truth, and i will say that i have seen it in the eyes of the atheist, the meat eating Christian,I have seen it in the eyes of the wealthy man, I have seen it in the eyes of the homeless beggar. I have seen truth shine from the eyes of a retard, I have seen nothing but darkness from the eyes of the privileged and i've been horrified by the deeds of the supposed enlightened gurus among us, as well as some of the morons who populate this planet...at least in my opinion, they are not, let's say...my "cup of tea"...However, it is all a perspective and a point of course,so to speak. for instance, one must journey a ways into themself to realize that possibly their prime outward motivation for seeking out a guru, even if there is an underlying devotional persective at work, was to either be justified in their wrong thinking or wanting a bail out from their life and all the wrong or karmatically induced situations that led to the petitioning of a master in the first place.Much like one cannot wear their little league uniform to the high school prom and in succession, one can't wear their high school prom outfit to a job interview at the age of 30 or thereafter,one must strip themselves of the outworn and used up tenets of their past to be fitted with their new clothes ( here of course meaning the hues of spirit), and of course, not clothes in the physical sense. The problem with all of us, as i see it, is somehow we want to simply enlarge our "little league uniform" and think it good enough, which it is for awhile, but eventually...it must go...as will our house of clay at the time of death, simply because we've outgrown it.In the heat of the death throes of whatever level of ego...here I am not a trained psychotherapist, nor guru, but one can easily see that the efforts to hold onto "that which must go" is all over this website in regards to "this person saying this and this person countering with that a nd Radha soami sucks or it's the best thing that ever happened to me, or dogmatic ascertaitions regarding sex, diet or what this Saint said, or Kabir or some other mystic...Hey!...did you ever stop and think that was "right" for Kabir...you not being anywhere near his stature, is completely wrong for you?...Like maybe if you were on kabir's level it would make sense...you being obviously a "Kabir in the Making?" you function from a whole different set of principles, rules, spiritual laws and such, and of course Kabir's Karma was obviously different than yours to boot!!!...See what i mean? think deeper and you will start to function in a less dogmatically inclined state of mind, and a much more relaxed less confrontational state of being in regards to "truth" whatever that is to you, ultimately and cease to be the cookie cutter mass produced whirling dirvish of angst that i currently see on the website...hardly cutting you or it down, I see it merely as "spiritual activity which is breaking up preconcieved notions among all of you, which is always good, and far away from you perceptions you stated...no, I was not trying to berate or banter with anyone...if anything relate that to many of you, Joy is in the offing, once you can see the futility of your arguments...drop them as the useless play of the mind and ego...whenever each is ready and well, joy and I GUARANTEE THIS a hearty laughter will ensue as you go...as have I ..."What a complete idiot have I been...this thing called the ego..."Why do you carry this little fiesty wolverine under your arm that makes you and everyone you encounter miserable? PITCH IT!..And thus prepare the way for joy and bliss...Joy and bliss are not the sole province of Sant Mat, but the free manifestations of the lord to all it's creation...those that are humble and love.
I think that you will see after reading this, please read through the sight and postings. you will see few if any postings of love, good will, the relating of joyous life experience, but for the most part a retelling of something someone read in a book about this or that guru, his accomplishments (not the poster on the sight...important point to remember, someone's disgruntledness at the dogma that has seized Sant Mat people, their dogma, their hypocricy etc. My reply to that is simply...where is the love? where is the joy? And is the pressure to conform or leave something that sant mat is engendering or is it something you brought with you from your earlier religious upbringing that you need to let go of????To me a very good question, and of course i hope when seen in that light, you will understand that bantering and berating was hardly the issue, only you saw it that way...In life we see from our levels, which are all different...In closing, dear friend...think back to the "can an ant really understand a man?...How much more implausible is it for us to understand the creative intelligence that set all this wonderful grandeur of creation in motion???? when one thinks long and hard on the matter isn't that the quest for truth, not some Boyscout troupe who has the coolest Scoutmaster?...But for some folks, they need that, so God Bless you all and HAPPY NEW YEAR...may we all gain a bit of enlightenment during the course of 2007! and for those of us slated to depart, may we have a wonderful continued journey...Love to ALL OF US

Bob, thanks for the year end thoughts. Along with LB, I have a small bit of advice of my own for you:

paragraphs

They're a wonderful literary device. They let the reader take a breath. Without them, you feel like you're running a Word Marathon. Non-stop.

Dear Brian,
Thanks! Bob here...point well taken!!!!!!...so much for my perfection!!!(ha!)...The paragraph...wonderful literary innovation!!
You know how it is though, when you get off on a literary roll...also my spelling and use of capitalization is equally deplorable!!! Thanks! much love and the best of the New Year! may we all grow closer to the indefineable....What ever that is in actuality...can't define it though...(just a joke)...but on a serious note, i do have some discourses for sale for those of you who do want to know how your refrigerator runs...I dunno, i found them in a gutter once upon a time, i don't know if your refrigerator would like them. Perhaps it would simply run away...i also don't know if the discourses actually would help you really understand how your refrigerator runs, they were written by this refrigerator repairman...At least that's what he said he was ...a guy by the name of Paul Twitchell...I don't know, you might want to take the refrigerator in question, if it is having trouble running, or walking for that matter, to a qualified refrigerator repair shop...i dunno...i just have this feeling...HA!!! couldn't resist...
(a joke)...Happy 2007!!!

To Bob,

Three things:

1. What exactly does your lengthy double-shot hodgepodge of rambling irrelevent puffed-up pseudo-spiritual bullshit have to do with this article's topic of criticism of the RSSB? ... Let me answer that for you: hardly more than nothing.

2. If you were never initiated nor involved with RSSB to any significant degree as you have indicated, then why do you so condescendingly presume that your phony intellectual rubbish heap of opinions and rambling nonsense holds any significance, relevance, or weight? You obviously don't have a clue as to what you are babbling about.

3. It is glaringly and exceedingly obvious to those of us who do indeed have some fair degree of wisdom and spiritual maturity, that your rather lengthy but pathetic attempt to berate and ridicule the critical thinking, experience, insight, and spiritual realization of those of us who clearly understand far more about the subject than you do, that you are simply... "full of it".

You are clearly way out of your league here. In light of that fact, I recommend that you go find something better to do than make such an utter fool of yourself.

Dear everybody...sorry i said anything...just voicing an opinion...I won't make that mistake again...Peace and love...such anger...Byyyyyyeeeeeee

Bob, I hope you don't let tao or anyone else's negative reaction to what you said bother you. Stand by your saying. Yes, it was paragraph free. But that's your style.

You're you, not anyone else. As the unpastor of this unchurch, I don't like it when commenters get unduly personal and critical. But I figure that we're all (or mostly) adults here and can handle some rough give and take.

I sympathize with your inclination to "turn the other cheek" and flee this blog. However, consider whether this is the best thing to do. For yourself, for others.

I'm leaning toward writing a post about courage and independence today, stimulated by some Vivekananda reading. So standing firm is on my mind.

Brian,

My comment was my own opinion. But then apparently my effort to tactfully present my critical views about Bob's rambling rant of ridiculous nonsense was somehow not to your liking, so let me put it much more concisely:

Bob's attitude stinks and sucks. His smart-ass berating of the critical thinking of both yourself as well as all the other commenters, was rather pompous, arrogant, and clearly uninformed. And his booringly meaningless rant was at best, a big long load of BS.

But then just like Bob's comments, that's just my opinion.

PS:

If Bob wants to run away like a pouting child simply because I don't buy his double-barreled blast of BS, then thats his choice.

On the other hand, if Bob wants to stand his ground and show something of substance to back-up his diatribes, then by all means I welcome and encourage him to do so.

Dear folks,
Bob here again. first off, I'd like to say that I was really not going to respond on this site ever again. Brian's thing about standing firm changed my mind.
I'd like to say at the onset of this post, that I have never been so misunderstood in all my life, as when i read back through the posts, I really can't see anything at all like what i have been accused of doing...to me it was kind of a thing to mediate somewhat to all of you, say "hi" and inject some humor, a bit of good-natured irreverence, and I believe if any of you read back over the post carefully, you will find that all the things you seemingly take offense at are wholly self inclusive...in other words, i include myself whole heartedly in all of my
how should I say?... "long winded pathetic BS" as was stated by some...'scuse me, I find it hardly true, kind or necessary and hardly the tenet of brotherly love, compassion or...even good reading skills!
Not to get into jousting with any of you at all but my intellectual skills compared to most , or so I test out on this planet are supposedly rather formidable, so we can leave it at that, but combined with what i do for a living-- creative writing, music, and art,I really think the perception of the "long winded BS", lies more with the inadequacies of the reader than the writer...of course that's my opinion...as i have nothing to defend...maybe I'm wrong and I am the "pathetic " creature that one of you made me out to be...who knows?...How kind for not even knowing me. Anyway, I've seen kinder pitt bulls...and here i do speak from experiential knowledge... I worked for the gas company once, and had to deal with them in people's backyards.Fiesty little bastards!!! They too, seem to think that they have something to protect.
Also, some of it was ridiculous by intentional design...especially the part about the refrigerator running or walking...I thought it was funny...of course we all have different senses of humor....frankly if they are two things on this planet I really can't stand and have no time for whatsoever, it is Dogma, wherever it shows it's ugly myopic little head and people with no sense of humor...sorry just not my kind of thing.
Also, I really after reading through all the combative posts that are on this site...things like "take your Sant Mat dogma and peddle it to the faithful" or something akin to that...well, I found it rather abusive for one Sat Sangi, or ex-Sat Sangi to say to another, and in my experience(THOSE OF YOU READING THIS POST REALIZE PLEASE THAT I AM QUOTING ANOTHER POST...THE POINT OF ORIGIN OF THE AFOREMENTIONED QUOTE IS NOT THIS WRITER) From my experience in life and struggling like i have to understand many of the tenets of Sant Mat that i have taken in and absorbed AND PUT TO USE AND TRIED TO INCORPORATE into the life process,along with other things metaphysical, philosophical and pertaining to the arts, thereby integrating it, as we integrate our personalities within us for a balanced, healthy life, that I have found, at least to me, and a point I'm personally very happy about,is that i also, went through everything with a rather myopic looking glass and it made me very unhappy. When i realized, at least where i was at, and excuse me... If i am a Sat Sangi, A Christian, a Bhuddist or an Athiest, my expression, state of being,MY LIFE EXPERIENCE and well, "humanity" does count and is worthy of respect...However, judging from the feedback, I guess i was mistaken and quite naive, thinking that that sort of open-minded brotherly love would be a given from Sat Sangi's...but as i was starting to say...when i realized it was all a rather illusionary egoistic position, i frankly grew from it, and could really laugh at myself and gain a new perspective, of which i was just trying to share with you...that's all. Believe me, i respect each and everone's religious or philosphical viewpoint...it is a given with me and has been since a youth!!!!!The same God created us all, only our perceptions as i see it vary, due mainly to our different levels of consciousness or becoming. At least it works for me, and how I understood Dr. Johnson's books, the Path by Charan, and other books i have read, that pretty much is at the heart of the teachings. If it wasn't I'd have never journeyed onto your site, nor taken the rather pronounced effort and labors to research and gain understanding. in fact the whole series of events leading up to my initial correspondence with Charan Singh, are admittedly strange, and in many ways i credit Charan with quite possibly saving my life...strange story...and also two subsequent correspondences with Gurinder Dhillon have caused me to "resist as long as is possible," and question and research and question and research...which i have done.I will say most pointedly that the reactions seem to cause me to wonder why i ever did, but i at least, have learned much from this exchange. For one, Tao your language is actually quite juvenile...you will see none of it in my 'pathetic long winded BS" i had strived for a higher plane of "expressive language"...just a hint, i think you should also strive to a somewhat similar end...If language like that is a staple of your daily discourse, it is little wonder why you didn't understand or coherently comprehend ????what i was just trying to say....Really...stinks and sucks?? smart-ass???? surely if more proper words are not part of your rhetorical regime, you could invest in a Webster's or a Thesaurus and keep it handy with you at all times....Eventually you might learn more proper words, which don't reflect so poorly on your maturity quotient.Anyway, why go to the level of a cut-down contest??? Such fare is the province of asses, and i refuse! Thank you all...indeed i have learned much.
Happy New Year, once again
Or at least may it be happier than it seemingly is at present for you all.
Thank you once again Brian for inviting me to respond.Peace and harmony to you all

What we have here, is another ultra long thread! I wonder, "How many feet, in length, is this one?"

Surely, within this thread, there is an Action-Reaction study, going on. The intellectual sparring, I find educational.

It is interesting that some Posts, rather profound ones, have no comments and others just go on and on...........

Dear Brian,

If the All is One, it certainly does seem to be rather viciously divided against itself.

Robert Paul Howard

"full of it" was really an understatement...

...and there will be no coming up to Churchless speed until "it" is fully unloaded.

DEAR ALL, Please please remember that not all followers of the R S Faith are sincere and trustworthy as I have come across two fradulent Radha Soami Shevadars collecting money from me in Lacs claiming that Satguru will help me and that since they are Gurus ardent followers AND sevadars in BHAYANDER AREA one should fully trust them. GOD....I WAS DUPED BY TWO SUCH EVIL SEVADARS: In Mumbai: Their Names Are: Mr. Naresh Punjabi and One Mr. Ravi Jeswani. FRIENDS SATSANGIS BEWARE AS THESE 2 PEOPLE ARE CRIMINAL FRAUDS. Someone please initiate to inform the Head of SEVADARS AT RSSB and eliminate their duties performed in the name of our dear Satguru. RB.

To all initiates of Sant Mat-please practice what you promised to practice-thats the real cure for all things of mind,mouth,body.

I have through falling and stumbling to the light and Charan Singh and Baba Ji has rewarded me with peace of mind-no one can take that away- except me-when I engage in anger and defensive,offensive virulent emails and excessive mind behaviour -all this intellectual hoohaa takes us nowhere Meditate daily do simran do bhajan read books support each other.Go in and be happy. To'faa soi'fua alofa-Radha Soami Ji -Fu'e Fu'e

Fu'e Fu'e,

Your rather ridiculous comment reveals a serious lack of understanding. Sant mat is the same BS just like all the other spiritual and mystic nonsense. There is and was, no "promise to practice", and there is no such "cure" needed for the mind or the body.

If you actually had the "light" and the "peace of mind" that you claim to have derived from these bogus gurus that you mention, then it would not be lessened by your admitted "anger and defensive,offensive ... mind behaviour".

The only "intellectual hoohaa" is your own preaching of Sant mat. And its you who are the one who is going "nowhere".

Meditation is merely another strategy of the spiritual search. Simran is merely useless mental gynastics and a form of mental illness. Bhajan is also useless mental gynastics. Books are nothing but words and ideas. There is no happiness to be derived from inwardness.

Sant mat is a waste of time and life. Its nothing but another form of antiquated spiritual dogma and mystical bullshit.

Hi All

What harm is there to following the teachings of Sant Mat, following the principles can only soften one's heart and create good will amongst man. I have been trying to follow the teachings for the past 20 years and it really is a better way to live. Even if there is no salvation, it is still nicer way to live.

If anyone knows of path that might lead us home please let me know until then I think I will just stick to the path prescribed by the masters.

Hanging onto a straw is better than hanging onto nothing.

John,

I enjoy traveling to the various National Parks. I love the mountains and outdoors. This activity brings a softness to my heart and goodwill to others. I have been traveling for more than 30 years. Try it, you might like it.

Roger

John,

You wrote:

"What harm is there to following the teachings of Sant Mat"

There is much harm in following teachings that do nothing more than waste a great deal of ones time, attention, and life so needlessly. There is also great harm in following fraudulent so-called "masters" that present themselves as being something that they are not, and who falsely deceive naive and gullible seekers into believing that they can and will lead them to the transcendent spiritual realm and liberation.


"following the principles can only soften one's heart and create good will amongst man."

That may be your opinion, but thats all it is. The reality of this is that, by and large, the great percentage of satsangis that I have observed do not exibit soft hearts nor good-will outside of their cult. And even within their cult they are not very congenial folks towards other satsangis. In my 30 years of obervation, Sant mat does not cultivate good-heartedness nor good-will in its followers and practioners. And there are many examples and instances and proofs of this that have been discussed at length previously, both here and in other forums. Sant mat is a very inward and life-negative and dogmatic path. It does not cultivate loving kindness or broad-mindedness amongst its adherents and practitioners.


"I have been trying to follow the teachings for the past 20 years and it really is a better way to live."

Thats only your opinion. What is that conclusion based upon? What is "better"? Sant mat is no better than anything else. Meditation and vegetarianism is certainly not limited only to Sant mat. And in fact, Sant mat's negative attitude towards life in general, and its blind adherence to contrived dualistic dogma and the worshipping of false gurus, is hardly a "better way to live".


"Even if there is no salvation, it is still nicer way to live."

Thats a rather absurd mentality to have. Just waste your time even if it leads ou nowhere, huh? Truth is, its not a "nicer' way to live, nor is there any "salvation" to be had from it. Its a path to nowhere. Give me one good example of someone who has been actually liberated/enlightened because of following Sant mat. You cannot, because there are none.


"If anyone knows of path that might lead us home please let me know"

The path is in yourself, and IS yourself. You... are the path. Actually, there really is no "path". That is all an illusion. The "path" is just part of the illusion of the search.


"I think I will just stick to the path prescribed by the masters."

There are no "masters". Thats all spiritual propaganda and foolishness. Its nothing more than the romaticising of the esoteric. These so-called "masters" that you speak of were nothing but ordinary people playing the role of guru. They are not masters, and to follow them is to wallow in ignorance. Sant mat (all branches) is merely a quasi-religious cult, which traps seekers into believing that it and its leaders will give them salvation and immortality.


"Hanging onto a straw is better than hanging onto nothing."

The trouble is... you are not hanging on to anything. You have been mislead and deceived, and you are not yet awake to reality. As long as you continue to hold on to false doctrines and bogus "masters", you will not know reality as it is. Your vison is skewed and distorted by these beliefs that you have bought into.

greetings,
one should have faith in his master.I know it would be difficult to understand for all those who don't follow this path.I follow it, as i have full faith in my master.He is the one who guides me.i am not initiated yet, still i trust him.

The above comment contained a number of Words of interest. Each word has its own discussion. The words of interest, I found are:
faith
follow
guides
initiated
trust

Ms Batia,

You are probably one of these typical one time only 'hit-and-run' type commenters, but if perchance you do happen to return to this site and read this, here are my comments:


One should really only have "faith" in ones own self. As it was said: "To thine own self be true"

The so-called "master" is but one's own true Will, not any other outside separate individual.

Sant Mat (if that is what you are referring to) is not difficult to understand at all, and there are many people who are deeply familiar with it, yet don't follow it anymore.

You say: "I have full faith in my master". Yet you also say: "i am not initiated yet".
However, if you are not yet initiated, then according to Sant Mat, technically you have no "master" yet.

Which leads me to wonder why you would bother to come to this site and claim "i have full faith in my master"? If you do have faith, then why you you feel such a need to assert it to others?

You say: "...still i trust him". What exactly are your trusting in? All you have is an idea in your mind of another person. How is it that you are trusting, and for what reason do you feel a need to trust someone that you do not know personally?

If find the mindset and 'blind faith' of people like yourself to be rather odd. To be quite hnonest, I find it to be rather unintelligent and lacking in self-esteem and self-confidence.

Hopefully my comments will make you think about these things and become more self-empowered, rather than being influenced and persuaded by other peoples cult dogma into blindly following false savior ("master") figures.


“Nick wrote: For me, one of the great benefits of the RSSB policy in recent years is the establishment of Satsang and Seva centers around the world. These centers undoubtedly function as much needed island ashrams within the current madness of consumerism that we live in....Here adults and children can work and play together in a safe and secure environment. You can talk about god and spirituality without seeming a weirdo..................”

I strongly disagree with you Nick. I think the whole purpose of these so called Ashrams is conditioning of young minds with RSSB's beliefs. Have you ever gone to the child centers in these Ashrams and talked to the bored young Moms who are locked inside a big room with hundreds of screaming kids and waiting for the clock to show 5'o clock or 3o'clock (depending on their other halves Sewa schedule or how much time it takes them to travel to these ashrams).

I have been part of this whole drama. I know a lot of depressed ladies (especially moms) out there who works for 5 days a week to help out their husbands in building their dreams and sulk inside the child centers on weekends. Sometimes their only dream is to send a nice and lazy weekend with their spouse and kids at home (and not the rushing madness of consumerism.) I am sorry I can only talk on behalf of these ladies as I have wasted my hundreds of beautiful weekends at one such ashram in US among them. I was labeled as a ‘seeker’ as I am not RSSB initiate. It was as if a junior title in a company.

Believe me every time I talked about God and spirituality at these Ashrams, I was treated as a weirdo cause I used to talk about God and not Guru; cause I used to talk about humanity and not about satsangi-ness; cause I used to talk about balance in life and not about conditional beliefs of RSSBs.

Dear All Readers, Some of you have no faith in Radha Soami Guru. But i would like to say ,Normal Human being never recognize the complete sants. Radha Soami Gurus are complete sants. Complete sants means "Guru is GOD or GOD is Guru". Anyone who has love with GOD can recognize the GURU. The Radha Soami Guru never told people to worship them, they have come in the world with GOD message and told everyone to worship GOD.

Parveen,
Thanks for calling us Normal people. I really appreciate that. You are absolutely right, only delusional people can say that "Radha Soami Gurus are complete saints". One of my close relative is one such person and he is on serious medication for such delusions. Radhasoami path has destroyed his carrier, family, integrity and most important of all human-ness, as he believe that only rssb initiates are chosen one and rest all are normal people who he doesn't have anything to do with.

By the way Do you know what does loving God means? Does it mean hating everybody who is not on your path or treating them as untouchables.

How can you say that RadhaSoami gurus never told people to worship them? Why physical darshan of Guru is so important? why do all the satsangi people have big sized pictures of all the gurus at home. (or why do Dera release such official pictures). They might have changed the ways of worship but practice is still the same.

Parveen,

I can't really improve much on what Sapient has already said to you, but I'll try.

You stated: "Radha Soami Gurus are complete sants."

That statement is about as lame as it ever gets. You don't know that, you cannot possibly ever prove it, and its nothing but empty meaningless words. And you are one of the dumbest commenters ever to post in this forum.

Moving on... Yes, the "Guru is GOD or GOD is Guru", but that is also just as true of everyone and everything, not just RS supposed gurus. But then you could not "recognize" a real guru if your life depended upon it, nor does it appear that you have any comprehension of the real nature of love either.

It is a fact that your Radha Soami so-called gurus or "sants" have indeed encouraged people to worship them in a variety of ways, and also they have not told anyone to worship GOD.

Their so-called "GOD message" is merely one that has been handed down to them, which they then parrot and perpetuate.

And here are a few examples of how they get people to worhip them: They encourage followers to worhip them by holding so-called "darshans" where people come to pay homage to them and grovel for a breif glance; by telling followers to meditate on their physical image or form; and by pretending to be divinely chosen and spiritually empowered embodiments of the divinity, of the Godhead.... which by the way, is all outrageously fraudulent rubbish.

They also encourage others to do work (seva) for them without any sort of pay, and to donate money seva to their cult organization coffers as well.

Sadly, you are quite evidentally one of those who has had the peculiar misfortune of becoming suckered, deluded, brain-washed, and trapped in the Santmat/RS guru-cult.

You have not even the faintest clue as to what's up with the RS cult and its "master/sant" myth, or what is reality.

And the really sad thing is that you are not even interested in understanding. I actually feel kind of sorry for pathetic people like you. I do hope you wake up someday before you waste your entire life.

Dear Tao,
I am not surprised after reading your comment that you have told Radha soami Gurus are fake. They just make people fool.Whatever i have already written "Radha soami Gurus are compete Guru" is based on my practical experiance.
littlebit I have read Bible,Kuransareef and Gurugranth Sahib. These all religious granth were written by the Complete saints. These all religious granth belongs to different religions but they gives us the similar message. If we read these three with open mind and open heart, nothing is different between them. All these three tell you about "Word", "shabad","Naam" and "GOD". Now if you think about the message of Cries, Ten Gurus of Sikh, Mohammand Sahib, saint Kabir etc , they had the similar message as Radha Soami Guru gives today.
When Cries were in this world, Nobody accepted him as Guru. and We people hanged him.Similar with Ten Guru of Sikh, we have created so many problems for them when they were in this world. Why the people worship them today if they are not present in this world.

Regarding seva. you are unable not understand What is seva. Why people gives money or does the labour work. If you will do.You will be able to understand.
Sorry man you have very less knowledge of santmant. I feel sorry for people like you who don't want to recognize GOD.It is managent rule " No organization without Leader". This universe is also a organization who also has a leader in the form of GOD. So saint gives us the way to meet GOD .
Last thing if you or anyone have some alternate to meet GOD please share knowledge.

"...Life is but a dream, sweetheart...."

Robert Paul Howard

Parveen,

Your wrote: "Radha soami Gurus are fake." -- Yes, that is ncorrect, they are fake.

"They just make people fool." -- Yes, some naieve and unknowing people are indeed fooled by them... but not myself, and not everyone is fooled by them.


"i have already written "Radha soami Gurus are compete Guru" is based on my practical experiance." -- Your so-called "experience" is subjective and is merely and only your own personal opinion.


"I have read Bible,Kuransareef and Gurugranth Sahib. These all religious granth were written by the Complete saints." -- Again, that is merely your own idea, your own opinion, your own belief... and nothing more. It does not prove and establish any fact.


"These all religious granth belongs to different religions but they gives us the similar message." -- So what?


"If we read these three with open mind and open heart, nothing is different between them." -- The reading of books does not prove or establish the truth of anything.


"All these three tell you about "Word", "shabad","Naam" and "GOD"." -- They only present mere words and ideas and beliefs. Mere words and ideas do not make or equal truth.

"if you think about the message of Cries, Ten Gurus of Sikh, Mohammand Sahib, saint Kabir etc , they had the similar message as Radha Soami Guru gives today." -- So what? Who cares what their "message" was. It actually doesn't amount to anything.

"When Cries were in this world, Nobody accepted him as Guru. and We people hanged him." -- I don't know who you are talking about, and also I did not "hang" anyone... so don't say "We". Speak only for yourself. You don't speak for others, so don't try to.


"Similar with Ten Guru of Sikh, we have created so many problems for them when they were in this world. Why the people worship them today if they are not present in this world." -- Because in general, many people are stupid and ignorant when it comes to such things, and they follow whatever they are told or influenced by.

"Regarding seva. you are unable not understand What is seva." -- Sorry, but you you just don't what the hell you are talking about. It is actually the ignorant fools like you who do not understand what "seva" is.


"Why people gives money or does the labour work." (?) -- Again, because they are blind and ignorant about spirituality, and because they are influenced and brain-washed into false beliefs.... Just like you are.


"If you will do.You will be able to understand." -- I already "understand". I don't have to DO anything to understand. I have already understood perfectly for at least 40 years. That's probably longer than you have been alive. And so you don't know diddly squat about what I "understand", and moreover, you are a fool to presume that you do.


"Sorry man you have very less knowledge of santmant."

The fact of the matter is that I know vastly more about all aspects of Sant mat. And you clearly know and understand very little. You are just another ignorant cult believer.


"I feel sorry for people like you who don't want to recognize GOD."

To hell with "GOD". "GOD" is just another idea that you have, and that others like you have and foist upon the world.... as if those who do not follow your stupid beliefs arfes somehow inferior. I know your kind... and people like you really SUCK big time.


"It is managent rule " No organization without Leader". This universe is also a organization who also has a leader in the form of GOD."

That is utter disgusting HORSESHIT. That notion is nothing more than authoritarianism , hieracchy, and petty tyranny. It is BOGUS through and through. That idea and kind of mentality is a real mental disease, a plague that has casts its dark shadow upon mankind for thousands of years. It is garbge and people like you who preach it are stupid ignorant morons.


"So saint gives us the way to meet GOD." -- There are no "saints" and there is no "GOD" to "meet". God is totality which includes everyone and everything.... not some ridiculous divine dictator up in sach khand. People like you are as spiritually dumb and immature as they come. If you would just wake up and cut out the absurdly lame religious crap, then you might possibly grow and develop real spiritual understanding.... but you won't the way you are presently going.


"...if you or anyone have some alternate to meet GOD please share knowledge."

Forget about "GOD", and forget about gurus.... Just be yourself and just live your own unique life. THAT is what God wants for YOU, and that is what the real God is already doing in and through and as you. You don't have to find "GOD", for God is everywhere and is everyone, at all times. GOD is living as YOU. God is being everyone simultaneously. So just be the unique manifestation of God that you already are. There is nothing for you to do, or to believe, and nowhere else to go spiritually. Don't try to guess what God wants. Just simply accept the WILL of God as it is now and always manifesting as your own unique life, and as the lives of all other beings. God is being everyone, manifesting as each individual, all the time. There is nothing for you to do but to live your life whoich is the life that god is living through you, as God is intending.

All of THIS... right here and right now... is IT.

So don't talk of "GOD". There is no need to talk of "GOD".... Just simply carry on and live the unique life that God is living and manifesting as YOU.

Spiritual guru cults is nothing but business. These spiritual beliefs, authoritarian dogmas, and guru cults actually have nothing whatsoever to do with the Truth or with the Real God, the Absolute, the Totality, the TAO.

u r d bigest loser

The TAO-Total Asshole Online!

Vijay, Oat..

OK. So Tao has offended you. Big deal. Get over it. Can you come up with intelligent counter arguments to his remarks? If you can't, perhaps you need to admit he's right.

Tao,
I apologize for the name calling.
-Oatmeal

Vijay
I strive to lose all my illusions in a big way. It is my sincerest wish for you too.

radha soami guru sampooran guru hain. Jo lok guru baare galat bolde hun eh ohna da kasoor nahin eh tan ohna di budhi da kasoor hai.Jo kehnda hai ke kisi ko 30 saal baad bhi bhajan karn te roshni nahi dikhayi dindi ta eh ohna da kasoor hai kyonke je parmatma nu milan vaste bhakti kiti jave ta parmatma jaroor milega.Par je sirf najaare dekhan lai kita jave ta fer rab nahin milda. lakhan lok beas jande hun kyon? Islai kyonke ohna nu shanti mildi hai je ik bhi ander na gaya hove ta ehne lok beas na jaan. RADHA SOAMI

RADHA SOAMI
RSSB gurus are complete gurus because i myself have met several people who have seen inner lights.

gagn... you are pathetic and lame-brained. how unfortunate.


im a radha swami nd i have had my naam nd i love my baba ji

To the last commenter who is too cowardly to use even a pseudonym:

Yes, I can clearly see that you are indeed a Radha Soami dim-wit who cannot spell english properly, who is full of cult dogma crap, and who loves some ridiculous fraud cult guru, who actually is the farthest thing from being a genuine "baba". But then it's only lame-brain morons like you who are attracted to fake spiritual leaders like him... and vice versa. So you both got what you deserve.... nada.


RADA SOAMI JI.

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