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December 18, 2005

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And what specifically were you asked to do by ur master that u did not like?

Great post. I've always had trouble with "master" myself. I brought it up to my mother once, and she simply said, "No, they really mean 'teacher,' people are reading too much into it." But then you have the poems like you posted, and it certainly seems to go beyond just a teacher. So. There's that.

And for the ladies, maybe a hot guy instead of Aishwarya! Hahaha.

Regarding your question, Ander, over the past 34 years I've found many things that were presented by the master as the RSSB "party line" that I didn't like and have modified to fit better with my personality, approach to life, philosophical outlook and so on. And most RSSB initiates that I know have done the same (but maybe not to such a degree).

My point in this post is that everything should be able to be questioned. Spiritual seekers aren't children who have to unthinkingly do what Daddy (or Mommy) says. Most religious practices are arbitrary human inventions. Rather, they all are human inventions, and most are arbitrary.

For example, why meditate 2 and 1/2 hours a day, as RSSB proscribes? Why not 20 minutes? Or 6 hours? And, why say these particular words as a mantra? Why not repeat other words? I could give quite a few more examples, but you get the idea.

In spirituality and mysticism it is reality that we should seek to be obedient to, not a person. Mysticism turns into religion when a pronouncement by a human ("Jesus says...", "the guru says...") is considered to be more real than natural reality.

Who are you going to believe: abstract words or a direct experience of reality? I'm suggesting that experience is superior to words. So if you experiment with following someone's words/advice, and the results you get don't mesh with what they told you would happen, believe your experience--not their words.

I agree.Dont believe ur master until u see with your own eyes..And dont follow ur masters footsteps; seek what he sought. Cool, these are fundamental principles.
But, how old are u? 55ish. These are the best years for meditation friend. Im sure plato or socrates or plotinus, rumi etc didnt find what they were looking for until after that age. And i recall Jagat saying to a recently retiree that he should regard this as the best day of his earthly life, since worldy duties were completed.

What else is there for u to write, or read?Who cares about evolutionVs creationism.? In europe this is a dead subject; its only in the usa that is an issue.Who cares, what difference does it make.Is just hair splitting.

After 55 years of age, for a sincere seeker of truth,there is only meditation. The buddha meditated for years and years; he thrived , he struggled,he fought; for years. And this is what all spiritual paths advocate after wordly duties are accomplished. Read hui-neng, dodgen, and all mystics, Tukaram, They hit the 50 mark, they hit the mountains and senclusion. Now,, senclusion in caves is not an option in our days. But, if you are financially stable, with a respected life, accomplished career etc then yes, seclusion at home is a way.
Istead, you my friend, opened a website,still read every single opinion that exist, read playboys and feel good cause is the first time you do w/o feeling moraly bad ( naked women are naked women; whats so special about that, why should one feel bad about them? beatiful and ugliness compliment each other-Tao).
if a man wants truth he should screw his society his social status and withdraw. 2 and a half hours are for beginners and amatuers. Is just enough to get the engine warm. ITs 10 12 15 50
that is needed. 30 years meditating 2.3 hrs id say is working the soil to plant the seed.

I dont know what else to say. I think u get my train of thought. I feel i am self contradicting myself just by writting these on the internet, but hey, this is the time of space tech. in 100 years ppl will be meditating on spaceships.

I like your books,Gods whisper is a book that will stand for many many decades to come.

I am 22, and i try to be a realist.thats all. Unfortunately my friend we ppl in the west have such an intelectual mind that is like walking on a razor's blade. If this is a war we are on the frong line.And pessimism being our greatest enemy.(and vanity? but is less subtle )
Cheers brian.

Moreover, the relationship that you are talking about is formed out of love. If somebody is initiated, its not by force. The problem would occur if the decision to choose this path is taken by an immature mind. Instead, before choosing the path one should have learnt and accepted these aspects of spiritualism and if thats not what pleases one's personality, then no point in continuing with that. One should thoroughly research the literature of the path, be a true seeker and then decide.

By the way, at around 55, with this state of mind, you can spend rest of life in comparing different paths, reading books, writing blogs and gaining nothing.

Its rigtly said, some people do not understand even after reading the whole book, and for some only few words are sufficient.

The commenter "trying_to_answer", is hardly succeeding to answer. There is no "love" involved in becoming an RSSB initiate. Very few, if any, have ever even personally met the big "master", except sometime after signing their soul away on the dotted line. There is no "Love" occuring for any prospective intitates. How could anyone "love" someone they have never met or do not know? RSSB and other similar cults are simply preying on people's emotional and spiritual insecurities, and their desperate desire for a spiritual "savior", and it is quite reprehensible. It is an old story which hopefully will fade away as humanity evolves.

The idea of "love" of the master is a lie. It is all simply a matter of making a personal choice to accept and believe the Radha Soami dogma, and its cult leader (the so-called "master"). The way it is all set up, is that a prospective applicant locks themselves into the RS belief system by their own doing. Once they have invested their belief in the dogma and authority of the suppposed "master", they are pretty much a goner. They have enclosed themselves into 'a prison of their own device'. All RSSB does is to lay out the net of philosophical dogma, and then reel the applicants in, after they have swallowed the bait. That is why most Sant Mat satsangis are so very defensive and in complete denial. To break free from the belief system and cult, would require that they admit they actually made a big mistake. And the old EGO never likes to admit that it got suckered by some dogmatic spiritual belief system and/or some bogus "spiritual master" authority figure. The mind and its ego will most likely defend itself, even when it is wrong. That is why all so-called "masters" are simply frauds and cons. Only awakened Sages are genuine, and they never ever play the "master-disciple" game. True Sages only passively help and guide people to become completely liberated from all such constraints of belief, dogma, and "masters".

Hi Brian ,

I find the points raised by Ander and trying_to_answer so valid. I mean if you review spiritual literature it is so clear that to gain mystical experience different saints sacrificed so much and made so much determined effort. In light of this , it seems futile and hollow to be doing all this debate on a blog about different paths etc, i mean saints did not get realization by doing this stuff. I am sure you know very well , all of Rumi's poetry which delves deeply into this struggle.

I think it is good to be honest to yourself and if you are at a point of not believing in anything that's fine , but what is the point in proclaiming it to the world and seeking validation for your views. Just move on what whatever you think is the next best step for you.

Wish you a very happy new year full of joy and peace.

well dear reading the letters you have posted on your website I feel you are the one to lead all the human race to the next level of spirituality. May be I think you should put the photo of you and ask how many people will follow you. I think you are waste of life.

In my opinion, Brian is no different from any other ordinary people like us. His talks are a mix of what he has learnt from various paths, what he thinks should be, and how to use what he has learnt.

"What he thinks should be" is overshadowing what he has learnt!!!

If somebody tells us that if you do this, you will get that. If we don't get that, though we may think that we had done enough and in the same way as we were told, then we feel that we have been cheated.

So we move out to an open society where we talk about not doing that because it did not work for us.

And in a way, Brian is doing good for the people who are choosing to do the same thing. Because now, those people would be more cautious and choose to do it with more understanding.

May be thats what is needed, more understanding and not just mere knowledge of it.

I was also curious about Sant Mat/Radha Soami faith after reading this blog, and I am trying to gather information about that as well. I have not quite yet finished. But whatever I have read, I can see that Brian uses it in some articles.

His another post of prayer absurdity is also the same. Though he takes references from other mystics/writers, but he talks about your Sant Mat. I came to know that Sant Mat does not just believe just in prayers. So, taking on from there, Brian writes that "Leave them and become more divine". Just that he did not use word Sant Mat.

So, he is writing for the people who are new in this area and for people who just want to read some stuff.

hotsparc,

You are right. I was saying this for a long time. You will also see commenter named "Voodoo on the bullshit" justifying evertything that Brian says.

This is the way "Voodoo on dah bullshit" would comment

----------------------------------------

hotsparc wrote .."Brian is no different from any other ordinary people "

**This is completely nonsense and wrong judgement

hotsparc wrote.."What he thinks should be" is overshadowing what he has learnt!!!"

**This is an absurd judgement that I would call BS. Brian is totally practical and a king of spiritualism.

hotsparc wrote.."So we move out to an open society where we talk about not doing that because it did not work for us."

**Come out of sleep dummy. I GOT. Brian is telling the reality to the people who are pigeon-holing themselves and try to pigeon-hole me. (BTW, hotsparc, pigeon-holing is Voodoo's mantra just learnt from Brian)

hotsparc wrote.."May be thats what is needed, more understanding and not just mere knowledge of it."

**This says nothing as you don't know anything and are not comparable to my God - Brian. What we need is not understanding but an ability to turn towards greater spiritual awareness in that turning, lies the balls oh no God.

hotsparc wrote.."Sant Mat/Radha Soami faith"

**Do't even think about it. Brian and I have 55 years between us and couldn't do anything after affiliating to this. (Then Voodoo shit would write some useless statements using the words rhetoric, dogma, belief, master, lie, slave, awakening, independence etc)

hotsparc write.."His another post of prayer absurdity is also the same."

**You know nothing about what you are talking. I would say "Good post Brian". I will come tonight to lick you good for this post.

hotsparc wrote.." he is writing for the people who are new in this area and for people who just want to read some stuff"

**If you don't like this dummy, go to another blog or group. This is only for Brian and people who like his views.

--------------------------------------------

This is the way Voodoo shit has commented till now. I won't wonder if he replies to my post also.

:-)

Another comment on recent comments:

This weblog is called "Church of the Churchless." If you're content with your "church" and don't like to read views that aren't consistent with your beliefs, then I'd suggest that you might be happier visiting other web sites.

I mean, some visitors seem to be upset with the very existence of this weblog. Well, it's my weblog, and my life, and I can write about whatever I want. And you don't have to read it unless you want to.

I encourage comments to my posts because I enjoy an open exchange of ideas about spiritual philosophies (or, the lack of them). But comments which say, in effect, "Brian, you should go sit on your meditation pillow and stop thinking/writing/blogging" aren't useful either to me or other weblog visitors.

Just some food for thought for the disgruntled Church of the Churchless visitors. I often read things that I don't agree with to get other points of view.

But I respect those ideas, even when I disagree with them. And I don't leave obscenity-laden comments on those web sites, trashing their very existence. It's my decision to visit those sites, so I have no reason to be upset that they exist or are expressing their own views.

Live and let live on the Internet (and elsewhere).

This Brian is as if Voodoo behaving.

In the Voodoo Avatar, Brian said, "It is his weblog, his life, blah blah" and now "it's my weblog, and my life, and I can write about whatever I want"

And Brian/Voodoo, don't be so over enthusiatic of the term "Church for the churchless". You are in no way filling the gap for churchless. Its just a term that you are cashing in.

Tomorrow, you can write an article on "Is God merciful?", and you know that you will mix everything you have learnt and present a watered down version with some new references that you are believing rather reading now.

By the way, you can write on "meditation pillow" also as I am not aware of that. :-(

Brian is Voodoo. Now that is proved.

We see a hypocrite who puts forward senseless arguments and writes articles as if he is enlightening people.

I assume that he is getting pension and doesn't have to work. Thats why this shit and coffee house discussions. I know he leaves from there when people are not accepting his views (in Brian's terms they are screaming).

As we are doing now. Is it not Brian? ;-)

You don't have to reply to this, moron.

To all Church of the Churchless readers, and especially to the reader(s) & commenter(s) who mistakenly insists that "voodoo" and/or "tao" etc. is really "Brian" in disguise, and vice-versa:

FOR THE RECORD:

I am not Brian. I am not Brian in disguise. Brian is an acquaintance of mine, who I know via the internet. Brian resides in Oregon. I reside in northern California. I assure you, we are very different individuals, and in case you have not noticed, we also clearly have different writing styles.

As far as I know, Brian is a quite spiritually well-read individual, who was a long-time practitioner of Sant Mat/RSSB, and who also generally leans towards agnosticism, and who recently has had some relative affinity towards Universism.

As for myself, I was at one time in the past, affiliated with Sant Mat and RSSB(prior to 1984), but I have for many many years (since 1970), been deeply involved in what is commonly referred to as Advaita Vedanta, and more specifically the orientation of Self-inquiry (atma-vichara) as was taught by the great sage Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi. I also resonate deeply with with the esoteric tantric teaching of Dzogchen, as well as some sages of Chan (Zen) Buddhism.

In regards to the above, Brian and myself have some common similarities, but we are also very different individuals with very different spiritual orientations. Brian and I also correspond occasionally and share and compare our different spiritual and philosophical viewpoints.

Therefore, let this identity issue be now settled. There is no need to continue this absurd question.

--- voodoo

Voodoo has started behaving now. Let's settle this issue for now. Don't comment again as you did earlier (tell_me has given an example above).

Voodoo,

Give your opinion and go back to work. Accept that not all the readers would agree with Brian's point of view. They would give their opinion. You can give yours if its different from what Brian thinks which I still doubt would ever be the case.

But somewhere deep inside you are Brian :-) Absurd identity crisis or BS identity crisis?

No ha ha ha, "somewhere deep inside" your "identity" is ah ah ah ... BS.

This dog of Brian (read Voodoo) can not keep his mouth shut. Though he was compelled to fabricate the story of "not being Brian", he failed to straighten his tail.

You are indeed a dog that resides near a place where you get some thrown bones. Once people stop throwing that to you, you move ahead to the next house.

And this time you are around Brian's. you are a BS (Brian's Shit)

Hi Brian,

I have been lurking around your blog for some time now, and I really resonated with your ideas on BDSM here. I just did a post on this myself on my own blog here:
http://naqsh.org/ned/?p=239

As a student of the Indian philosopher-sage Sri Aurobindo, I fail to see what BDSM has to do with transcendence, apart from providing people an initial window into the dualities within them. As such it could be a start, but one would ultimately have to move forward from such highly polarized roles for true spiritual intimacy to develop.

On my own blog I wrote the following:

----
BDSM culture bores the pants off of me, so to speak. It’s so heavily laced with an air of “playing a role” or “being the center of attention” and things like that, and I think that the more integrated and healthy a mind you have, the more these things become minor fascinations (at most) rather than anything to build a lifestyle around. In the end, when fetishes are about getting away from being yourself or shying away from one aspect of your natural being, they appeal more and more to people with certain sets of issues. As I’ve grown spiritually, I’ve become very comfortable with both the masculine and feminine sides of my nature, dominant and submissive, aggressive and passive, grasping and ungrasping, strong and weak, and so on. So playing one over the other with such fervor and consistency that it becomes a lifestyle or something, just seems like monotony, and it totally kills real spontaneity. It may satisfy impulses and roles, but real spontaneity (the intuitive, non-reactive kind, when you act out of the radiant stillness of the soul) is about resonance and compatibility, and just has nothing to do with such planned out forms like traditional gender roles or BDSM.
----

*Nobody* can make anyone else complete or whole. The idea smacks of co-dependency, attachment, and addiction, which is anathema for spiritual growth and the development of the soul. The only thing that can make each individual whole is the growing inner relationship with the Divine, and with others as seen in the Divine.

Thanks again for this post, and I hope to read more of your work.

To Hotsparc, tell me or ha ha ha,
You are saying that Brian and vodooo are same people, but to me it seems like you three are the same people.

Why are you so offended by Brian or anybody who agrees with Brain? Are you all RSSB followers (no i am sorry..the only chosen ones in this world) And you think that by calling people "other's shit" and other names, you are serving your Guru.

Till now, I knew that satsangis are not supposed to talk about or write about Guru, path, satsang etc in the public but I never knew that they are now supposed to stop others who are analyzing this path or guru too. What are you scared of?

Who are you anyway? Another Islam in making?

Ander,
I know it's been two years that you wrote the comments in this blog, may be you have got some wisdom by now. In case you haven't: why do you think at the age of 22, you have the right to tell Brian (who has been meditating for the last 30 years) that 55 is the best age to meditate?

You are a kid in the block. You were seeking truth and found the biggest trap of your life with lots of bookish knowledge. Have you ever experienced anything? how many years have you been meditating?

You said "if a man wants truth he should screw his society his social status and withdraw". I am not sure if you are a RSSB follower, but in case you are, you are contradicting your own path cause the only promise RSSB gives is that you can achieve enlightenment while being a family man and being in this material world.

I said I would never write in this blog again, and I would not, but I had not realised I retained 'open acounts'(pointed by sapient). Yes its been some time that I wrote my response.

I was rude, abrupt and more importantly very negative. I dont regret it though. Reading it now is like looking into a page of a mental diary of mine that
I completely forgot i wrote.Unbelievable. Brian, I'm sorry for beeing offencive.

Nevertheless,I'll try to'bring out' the point I was attempting to make at the time, with a current interpretion of what i wrote.

always have that DESIRE to find the truth. satisfy that hunger which is still unsatisfied. To desire the awe that can bring you to ur knees. to need to experience that beauty. to retain the drive.

Tukarama says it much better:

"I have now determined to achieve the end.
I shall never part with the treasure in my possession
Adieu now to all idleness which is the canker of the soul.
Adieu to all forgetfulness which prevents one from harbouring God in his mind.
Adieu to all shame, for it stands in the way of the attainment of God.
Happy am I, that I have determined to find out God" (Abg. 2774).

(from the site: http://www.geocities.com/ganesha_gate/Tukarama.html)

Love to all and to the Master.

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