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November 24, 2006

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I'M GLAD YOU WROTE THIS ARTICLE--
PERHAPS I'M NOT AS WEIRD AS I THINK,BUT THEN PERHAPS I'M EVEN MORE WEIRD----OH WHAT A FEELING.

Shorter version: Satsangis irritate me but I still like the master.
Interesting that you are able to more or less condemn the organization but give it's manager, a person famous for even picking out the bathroom tiles at the RSSB Study Centers, a complete pass. (Maybe President Bush isn't responsible for the bad things happening in this country).
Gurinder spends a lot of time managing the organization. The buck has to stop somewhere. Perhaps he's a great guru and a lousy manager.

The really unsettling fact about the Sant Mat teachings is that the followers are required to do two and a half hours of meditation EVERY DAY.Naturally the followers feel constantly guilty and exhausted from trying to carry out this impossible requirement. When not meditating the follower is supposed to be constantly repeating simran (another word for a mantra).Gurinder has recently been saying that followers will find meditation and simran more refreshing than sleep.
This kind of lifestyle is more suited to someone living in a convent or monastery, where constant help and guidance would be available, and no wordly tasks would impinge upon the intense devotion required.
Gurinder is not available for the average RSSB follower, except through the mass question and answer sessions mentioned in Howard's post. Gurinder says that everyone is being 'looked after from within by the master', therefore external assistance is unnecessary.
At first I believed all this, and felt that I must be a hopeless failure in every way, but I now see the whole RSSB/Sant Mat set up as a mass delusion.Particularly at the large centres, Sant Mat has turned into a cult, not a religion.It seems to me that a real spiritual teacher would only have a few disciples, with whom he or she had regular personal contact.
This site is really helpful,Brian, and has cheered me up, after years of miserable and fruitless struggle!

To veronica:

Your points are very well taken and I'm with you all the way when you say "the whole RSSB/Sant Mat set up as a mass delusion".

Nice to hear that you've made it out from the RS labyrinth and into the open again.

As Bob Marley once sang: "Emancipate yourself from mental slavery; None but ourselves can free our mind".

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

To Brian:

The correspondence from your satsangi in Berkeley that you posted was garbage. The guy is obviously still quite hung-up in RSSB dogma and is an apologist for G.S.. Sorry to say, but I for one felt rather disgusted reading it.

The eminent 17th century philosopher Spinoza spoke of a stone that is thrown. If this stone could think and speak, it too would say that it is flying toward and falling upon the spot which it desires. But, in reality, it flies only because someone threw it and it falls under the action and power of gravity. We can immediately set aside Spinoza's example of the falling stone. We realize that man possesses a free will in the sense of a choice of acting in one way or another. Spinoza considers the actions of the flying stone analogous with man's actions. This comparison could have been made only if the stone had a freedom of choice - to fly or not to fly, to fall or not to fall. But a stone, of course, has no such freedom and the given example is altogether unconvincing.

To Howard (the satsangi correspondent in Berkeley):

Howard wrote:

"I think you should continue to give satsang but call people on their B.S. and hypocrisy."


My response:

I think you should STOP giving satsang because it is all "B.S. and hypocrisy".

And you are merely parroting it and being a slave to a dogmatic spiritual guru cult, which has nothing to give you that you do not already possess within yourself.

I don't think you have any business to "call people on their B.S. and hypocrisy", before you have first removed the hypocrisy from yourself. If you are still sucking on the RSSB tit, then you have no business judging or criticising others.

First, let go of all your involvement, attachment, and affiliation with RSSB, guru, and satsangs, and then you will be fit to judge and criticise others.

And if you ever do feel a need to share satsang someday, then let it come only from your own personal and direct experience, and not just some cheap repetition of words and ideas that you have borrowed or derived from other (questionable) sources, books, and individuals.


why should u tell people what they should or shouldn't do? And on top of that u always use heavy ,absolute words. "I think u shoud do this ,,,do that....and the other thing". This is a conversation panel friend. Instead it seems to me, that u are what u attack. Now feel free to tell me what to do as well.

To ander:

It sort of appears (but not very clearly) that you were responding to me. If that is the case, then listen up "friend":

1.) I was not telling people to do anything whatsoever. I was mimicing (and adapting) what had already been written by Brian's correspondent, which was and I quote: "I think you should continue to give satsang but call people on their B.S. and hypocrisy." So obviously you are not astute enough to perceive or to understand that I was simply making a parody and a mockery of that quote.

2.) I certainly do not "always use heavy, absolute words", nor have I ever said "I think u shoud do this ,,,do that....and the other thing". Apparently you just do not have the intelligence and cognitive ability to properly understand, articulate, or even compose basic english vocabulary, spelling, and syntax, and thus you make nothing but absurd and foolish statements such as "it seems to me, that u are what u attack", and "Now feel free to tell me what to do as well". If that is all you can say, then that is pretty damn pathethic.

3.) Furthermore, speaking of "attack", you have apparently attacked me; whereas I was not communicating to you at all, but was merely responding to that satsangi's message which was contained within Brian's article.

4.) Lastly, your statement "This is a conversation panel...", is quite ridiculous in as much as you obviously just do not understand that my comments are but my opinions, just as your comments (as stupid as they may be) are but your opinions. That's just what we do here. If you have something to intelligent to contribute, then do so... but misquoting me and making distorted representations and false interpretations of my comments is not "conversation" at all, but is in fact making a baseless "attack", not to mention making a complete fool of yourself.

Bottom-line: I know your kind. You and those like you have not got enough smarts to make any intelligent commentary. So all you are able to do is to make stupid nonsense remarks based on nothing more than misinterpretations and deliberate distortions.

My unsolicited advice to you: Grow up...and wise up.


I think Veronica has made a very important point here, and one that I have felt for years. That of the endless cycle of guilt and inadequacy so many satsangis fall into through being unable to match a monastic degree of devotional practices. Very well put!
The reason I maintain a practice of meditation is that I find it very effective for mental calm and general inner exploration.
Sant mat of Kabir and a few others seems to have been a lot more 'free flow' and less dogmatic, like some of the early Chrisitan gnostics. It is unfortunate that it has deteriorated into mass movements with cultic belief structures that are the very thing the medieval sants saw as barriers to realisation.

I agree with Nick.

And I agree with Nick and Tao! I had a kind of 'anti realisation' experience when in Gurinder's presence one day, when it suddenly became obvious that I was limiting myself to a tiny vision, crushed under rules and regulations and surrounded by people who were behaving in an incredibly sycophantic way towards someone I had lost all respect for. This was very awkward at the time, but the freedom from guilt etc is thrilling. Following the Sant Mat system actually seems to block the 'free flow' that Nick mentions, and takes away so much personal confidence that the idea of being able to 'emancipate yourself from mental slavery' seems a distant dream.

what to do with radha swami baba ji,s old religious books.


OVER THE YEARS I'VE COME TO UNDERSTAND SOMETHING THAT A CLOSE FRIEND SAID TO ME-----------
"IT IS A SPIRITUAL AXIOM THAT
EVERY TIME WE ARE DISTURBED,NO MATTER WHAT THE CAUSE,THERE IS SOMETHING WRONG WITH US"

I UNDERSTAND THAT IN MY OWN LIFE.
I ALWAYS WANT TO BLAME THE OTHER
PERSON FOR MY FEELINGS. I BEGIN TO RESENT THEM--WHEN THIS HAPPENS THEY
HAVE BECOME MY GOD----THEY HAVE TOTAL CONTROL OF MY FEELINGS-ACTIONS AND THOUGHTS.

I HEARD A GUY EXPLAIN RESENTMENT
AS "DRINKING POISON AND WAITING FOT THE OTHER PERSON TO DIE"

MY BELIEFS HAVE BEEN SHAKEN MANY
TIMES IN MY LIFE--(APPLY THE SPIRITUAL AXIOM MENTIONED ABOVE)
IT'S ME THAT HAS THE PROBLEM.

I NOT SURE WHO SAID THIS OR IF ANYONE DID SAY IT-----
SO HERE GOES----WHEN THE FOUNDATION
OF MY BELIEF IS SHAKEN, UPON CLOSER INSPECTION I FIND IT'S GOD WHOSE DOING THE SHAKING.

MY CHOICE IS TO FOLLOW THE PATH OF
SAT MAT. I NEED TO LEARN TO RESPECT ANOTHER'S POINT OF VIEW AS WELL. IT'S NOT FOR ME TO SAY WHO IS RIGHT AND WHO IS WRONG.

AS FAR AS I'M CONCERNED EVERYBODY
IS RIGHT.

OVER THE YEARS I CHECKED OUT MANY RELIGIONS-----I'VE BEEN DIPPED,DUNKED AND DARN NEAR DROWNED
ON MANY OCASSIONS. ALL IN THE NAME OF RELIGION OR SPIRITUAL GROWTH.

LEARNING TO SEE SOMEONE ELSE'S
POINT OF VIEW IS QUITE HARD-----
I WANT SO MUCH TO BE RIGHT,EVEN IF
I HAVE TO PUT SOMEONE ELSE AND THIER BELIEFS DOWN TO DO IT.

IN THE BIBLE CHRIST SAID---HE WHO SAYS HE LOVES GOD YET HATES HIS
NEIGHBOR IS A LIAR.
YES,,SOMTIMES I AM A LIAR.

I REALLY DON'T KNOW IF THIS HAS ANYTHING TO DO WITH THIS BLOG---I DON'T EVEN KNOW WHAT BLOG MEANS--

I RESPECT ALL WHO HAVE BEEN IN THIS BLOG----AND WHATEVER PATH YOU MAY BE ON--"GO FOR IT"

WHEN I WAS GROWING UP--PARTY LINE
WAS CALLED SUCH BECAUSE YOU COULD
BE ON THE LINE WITH SEVERAL PEOPLE
AT ONCE--ALL DISAGREEING WITH EACH
OTHER-----THEN WE WOULD ALL MEET FOR PIE.

Like Howard, I have been attempting to follow the practices of RSSB for over 35 years. He is a good friend and we have had many conversations over the years about our problems with RSSB. His comments pretty much sum up my own considerations with some minor differences.

Many times I have come to question the path and the spiritual authority of the gurus. I have always come back to the postion that the gurus do not ask for, nor are they interested in, our blind belief or acceptance of them on an authoritative basis.

My experience of Huzur Charan Singh and of Gurinder Singh is that they seem motivated by love and compassion, and not by base motives. When I have been in their presence, I get the sense of what I call the No-Self.
The basic teaching, as I understand it, is that the sense of self or separative self is all that stands between the soul and the Divinity. The gurus' job is to assist us in the removal of that sense of separative self. He does this by giving us a technique, the full implementation of which, will allow us to access higher levels of consciousness and being beyond the limitations of self, body identity and space-time. He also stands as an example and as someone whose own attainment sheds a postive beneficial influence on those aspiring to follow the practice.

Emphasis is always put on the practice, and not on what one might believe about the guru.
For those who are dissatisifed with the results or lack thereof of their spiritual practice, my advice is to look at yourselves.
Where does your attention dwell during the day and at the time of sitting for mediation?
Huzur Charan Singh always pointed out that it is our absorption in the activities of our daily lives, not some heinous deed or dark ignorance, that prevents us from making any real spiritual progress. We are in love with our own bodies, with the world, with our spouses, our children, our houses, our politics, our job, wealth and possessions, even our dogs and cats, and are obsessed with them day and night. Because we wish to control the external circumstances surrounding all these things, and because we wish to possess them, our awareness is limited to the lower centers of consciousness contained within the body below the eyes.

I think many Westerners have a problem with Sant Mat because Western culture begins with the assumption of the reality of the separate self and the world whereas Sant Mat assumes their unreality. We Westerners tend to futilely calculate and analyze everything with the assumed interests of the self in mind. For the gurus the world and the body and the separate self are like a dream from which it is their duty to awaken us.

Having said all of this, I am not an apologist for RSSB. I no longer attend the satsang meetings, because the belief-driven atmosphere and the forced behavior of trying to conform to an assumed code of conduct are stultifying, almost suffocating, to me. But I acknowledge that some people may need this kind of structure. Maybe we all need to have a belief system at some point, and maybe the compassion of the gurus extends to their having to come to the level of our belief systems to start to communicate with us so they can ultimately destroy them. And maybe the worst part of our belief sytems is that fictional character called "I", which we take so seriously to be real.

Rob Riggs,
Austin, Texas

You all just go 'round and'round. I was initiated by Charan Singh about a zillion years ago. After all these years, I have realized that Sant Mat is just pure crap as far as "spirituality" is concerned. At the same time it is pure truth as much as anything else is if there were anything at all.

There is no one to find any thing. There is no thing to find. There is nothing objective anywhere nor is there anything subjective anywhere. There is simply awareness which has no dimension, location, quality or duration. This can't be confined, described, achieved or conceived. There is nothing to be done because there is no one to do it. There is no where to go because everywhere is here which is nowhere at all. There are no good deeds. There are no bad deeds. There is nothing that can hasten or delay. To where? To whom? To what? Order is chaos. Chaos is order. Your perceived limitation is infinity. To perceive infinity is limitation.

Does all this sound a bit glum and drab? Hopeless and depressing? Well it's not. It's radiant, but remember what Hui Neng once said. I believe he was some sort of sixth patriarch or something like that...

"From the beginning, not a thing is."

Ever wonder why there is anything at all? That's really a good one...Why is there ANYTHING ?
Where did God come from?

Now you know.

Tao has made another very important point about the giving of satsang that has bugged me for years.
In Sant Mat satsangs speakers are actually encouraged to speak beyond the level and depth of their own inner experience or 'gnosis'of sprituality.
This must necessarily confuse the speaker at various levels of his/her being as well as it being dishonest and encouraging cultic belief rather than experiencing.
It is nice to hear the occasional satsang where someone sticks to their own realisations and doesn't drift off into theological fantasising.
These are few and far between however.

I translate Hui Neng to say,
"From the beginning, not one thing is."

There is no separation. Not one thing, separate from other things. All at once.

So obviously, order and chaos are not interchangeable, since between heaven and earth, there are the ten-thousand things, and we, the illusion creators, are there, too.

And radiant!

I found this discussion from a website on the Internet yesterday.

I'm still curious.

Is the following discussion topic; Awareness and Higher Consciousness, an illusion too?

By being completely aware and immersed in consciousness, thoughts cease to disturb; they may still come, but they are regarded as exterior. In order to experience this state, one has to really and deeply desire it and devote time to being aware of it. This may be at first during meditation and then, when more proficient, throughout the whole day until it becomes natural.
Strong powers of concentration are a great help. Reading spiritual literature, or coming in contact with people who are living in constant spiritual awareness are great aids. Your practice should be done in a relaxed and calm way, without thinking of the target or worrying too much about it.
You do not need to search for this Consciousness. It is here, and you are living in it all the time. You only forgot it. You are letting thoughts rule your life. The sky is always up there. If we do not see it, this is because of the clouds that cover it. The clouds of thoughts cover your Consciousness, but by removing them you become aware of it.
This Consciousness I am talking about, is not the everyday, ordinary awareness of our body, ego and personality. It is not the awareness of the world around us. It is a "Higher Consciousness" that stands beyond the ordinary one, and is responsible for it.
The ordinary consciousness is changeable and intermittent. At times we are aware of the outer world and at other times unaware or only partially aware. There are times of sleep and times of wakefulness. On the other hand this "Inner Consciousness" is always present. Everything takes part in it. It never ceases to be and is always present. It is the background of whatever happens in life. By being aware of it, we become more than human beings.
Developing the power of concentration, practicing meditation and trying to be aware of our Awareness, Consciousness, and Being, is the way to the golden key that opens the door of Enlightenment.

Thanks for any comments,
Roger

What are we thinking when we say "higher consciousness" or "more than human beings" if there is already some debate on the definitions?

Maybe the point is that language, as many here have said, is insufficient to get the idea across, and this writer is trying to say how desireable this state of being is.

Logically, my understanding bridles at the instruction to work hard to acheive awareness. It seems contradictory.

The theatrical illusion is that there is another way to be that is not in my now; that there is another now to be in; that there is another concsiousness that I can have.

I am he as you are me as you are He and we are all together."I" do nothing. "I" know nothing.But if He told me to jump off the Eiffel Tower, I would submit. It would have to be from the Horse's mouth and not just by way of a "satsangi".

Howard wrote, "Once a saint leaves this world his lofty teachings are taken up by lesser minds who then turn their teachings of universal love and the fatherhood of God into something rigid and intolerant. This is happening to RSSB right now, this is happening in spite of a living master." The Franciscan order began to turn vicious within the lifetime of St. Francis, with the rigid and intolerant types turning on the the others. There's nothing new under the sun.

So many words, so many thoughts, such confusion. Be still ...Then listen

Pam,

Listen to what?

Ask Brian


I do yoga. Ashtanga yoga. The yoga of Patnajali. It keeps me fit and well and healthy and strong and happy. It keeps my mind clear and pure.

A satsangi friend once tried to introduce me to RSSB. But she was so ill and sickly looking and pale and nervous, I couldn't help but decline.

I read the literature. It was nonsense. And above all the fact that it proscribes against yoga practice said it all for me.

You people should exercise well and eat well and sleep well. Stop feeding you egos by seeking the divine. If the divine wants you, it will find you.

Take care of yourselves and stop torturing yourself with this bullshido.


To Simon:

Apparently you misunderstood the focus of this blog/forum.

First of all, no one here is toruring themselves, nor are they necessarily "feeding" their egos or "seeking the divine" as you say.

Second, just because you once met one sickly RSSB satsangi, doesn't mean that shabda yoga/meditation is all "nonsense". However, that being said, even though I have a great deal of experience with Sant mat, I am no longer a practitioner of it, nor am I in any sense a supporter of the RSSB cult. In fact, the primary issue and discussion put forth on this blog (and other similar forums) has actually been quite critical of the religious organization/cult and guru/leadership of the RSSB, and to some lesser degree some aspects of the philosophical dogma of Sant mat. The fact that you assume that Sant mat is "against yoga practice" clearly shows that you just don't know what it is that you are talking about at all.

Third, you obviously think that engaging in critical thinking and philosophical debate is "bullshido". And as far as Sant mat goes, your comprehension is apparently quite faulty. And then to judge others in this forum & to put down other spiritual orientations in comparison to your ashtanga yoga, is simply puffed-up and egotistical of you. (and btw, you can't even spell Patanjali correctly)

Dear Tao

Yes, you are right about everything. And I am wrong. Many apologies. You clearly know everything.

I didn't realise RSSB allowed practioners of Sant Mat to practice Ashtanga Yoga concurrently. Clearly my information was wrong. Obviously they do allow/permit practioners of Sant Mat to practice Ashtanga Yoga ?? This is what you are saying, I presume.....

I wasn't trying to put anyone down? I am sorry that you are so easily offended. I just thought some people sounded unhappy and dis-illusioned and confused, thats all. I was actually trying to help.

Your response was very aggressive and confrontational and you are clearly fragile and hyper-sensitive to criticism.

Curious how for someone so "spiritual" and "enlightened" and for someone who has spent so long searching and studying the path you don't see to generate or emanate much love or light. Its so easy to rattle your cage isn't it, oh fragile one.

Many apologies for my mis-spelling. Clearly this renders me an inauthentic voice. I am so sorry that I abused you with my stupidity.

I will leave you to you very learned companions and your clearly enlightened serenity. I will happily decline from any further contact with your unpleasantness.

Au reviour.

simon


Its quit late in my part of the world; so I didn't read Howard's text completely, nor the postings.
But something occured to me. I have been among satsangi's all my live, hippie parents and all that. So, not being initiated but somehow influenced anyway, and deeply, I saw a change as Howard did as well. The thought I have now is that the whole world seems to change; satsangi's to me seemed quit christian in a bad way. Dogmatic. Charan I never saw that way, but Gurinder seems to be far more relaxed and far less 'systematic'. Why?
Because we enter a different state perhaps; we dont need to be guided as haevily as used to be say from Christ onwards. I guess that people or want to fight more extremely for what ever, or they rely more on there own Self, whatever that is, and only seek support, but not guidance in the strict sense of the word. Authoraties are either welcomed greatly or greatly dismissed. It seems as if the difference between here became larger.
Well, its late...

Simon,

Well, according to the negative and cynical tone of your last several statements, everything else you said above it was apparently sarcasm.

However, even though you clearly have an reactive attitude and a charge about something or other, I will answer your question and respond to your statements:

You wrote: "I didn't realise RSSB allowed practioners of Sant Mat to practice Ashtanga Yoga concurrently. Clearly my information was wrong. Obviously they do allow/permit practioners of Sant Mat to practice Ashtanga Yoga?"

They (the RSSB) neither allow nor disallow the praticing other forms of yoga. I have almost 30 years past experience with Sant mat and RSSB, and there is no such restriction upon engaging in any other types of yoga etc. Furthermore, the RSSB has no authority over anyone to be able tell them what to do or not to do. Sant mat is a voluntary path, and your life is in your own hands, not theirs.

In addition, I am hardly "easily offended". Nor is Brian or most of those who comment in this forum "unhappy and dis-illusioned and confused". Most commentators are quite clear about such issues and have little or no involvment anymore with RSSB (if they ever did in the first place), and then there are also an occasional minor few who stumble in here with the specific agenda to dogmatically defend RSSB and contend with the so-called 'ex-satsangis'.

Your mention of "trying to help" is a nice excuse, but how did you actually expect to "help" anything by criticising Brian and other commenters as being "egos", calling Sant mat teachings "nonsense", and saying that other commenters and their comments are "bullshido"?

Next, you grossly misinterpret my rather matter of fact comment to you as being "aggressive and confrontational". And as far as "fragile and hyper-sensitive to criticism"I am most certainly not, but that is in fact clearly evident what you yourself are, as shown in your reponse. You came here accusing people of "nonsense", "ego", and "bullhido", when in fact, your Ashtanga rant and criticism of Sant mat was clearly and obviously egotistical bullshit. You must think that this forum is a bunch of dummies. Well I have news for you Simon: You are way out of your league here.

Finally, contrary to your inference, I don't claim to be either "spiritual" or "enlightened". Nor have I been "long searching...the path". I am not a searcher or seeker at all. Nor do I try to "emanate love or light". I am concerned only with the truth. I am not here to please smart-ass arrogant (and "unpleasant") little punks like you. And so the only "cage" that got "ratteled" here, was clearly your own fragile and hyper-sensitive mentality.

As far as your self-admitted "stupidity" goes, everyone including myself, makes spelling mistakes, but you obviously can't handle a harmless little poke. Therefore, if you want to play with the big boys, then you're gonna have to grow up and wise up a bit more.


Greetings to everyone!I am still a seeker and not a student yet.I have read a lot of Sant Mat Books and have accepted the whole philosophy at once.Moreover my father is a student(satsangi) of Maharaj Charan Singh Ji since many years and he suggests me to be a student of his successor Gurinder.However i am a little bit confused about that fact,and i would like to have some help about it.I have heared that most of Gurinder's students dunnot have much improvement and most of them are dissapointed.They are trying very much,but with few or zero results and that's what dissapoints me.Furthemore,i am a person that doesn't really like the enjoyments of this life and would like to devote to a Sant mat master.The problem here is that Gurinder is such busy and has so many students that i won't be able to have personal contact with him.I want to devote my life to meditation,but i also want to have imrpovement and not just wait till i die...Here are some questions that i would be glad if u could answer any of them 1)What are your comments about Gurinder? 2) Does anyone of you(the satsangis-students of Sant Mat)have had any intellectual experience?(just say yes or no) 3)Does anyone of u know any other Sant Mat Satguru to suggest me and does anyone know maybe Yogani Mata Ji? These are all my questions.Thank you for your understanding and i hope to get some answers soon...

Dear Jim:

Be very careful here.

If you delve deeply into the Radha Soami postings on this site (accessed by the RSSB links in the left hand column on the homepage)you will find many opinions and discussions, pro and con, regarding that particular path. So much has been said here that it would be a waste of time for me to try to add anything new to it.

I can suggest that you do not embark upon this path because you find little enjoyment in this world. To use this path as a justification for these feelings or as an escape will only disappoint you in the long run.

May I suggest you fully immerse yourself with full acceptance in life as it is right now, as you are right now. When you are washing dishes, be the washing. When you are seeing a sight, be the seeing. When typing on the keyboard, be the typing. That's IT. A lifetime with Radha Soami will take you no closer to the truth than that.

Has anyone of you gone within enough to spend a glimpse of what the teachings are sharing? If not, then we can intellectualize constantly.
Letting Go only to hear your heart beat and hear the wind sing, is truth too.
But seeing that inner light or being a part of the eternal flame is bliss and leaves a permanent impression, never to be disputed.
Love is real, step into it sometime, I try.

Ade, you didn't answer your own question. You said that you "try." But have you actually become "a part of the eternal flame"?

If so, please tell us more about what it's like to be enlightened. I'm sincerely curious. You said you have a permanent indisputable impression of the truth. I invite you to explain.

As for myself, I certainly also know that love is real. Doesn't everyone? We step into (and out of) love continually. But I don't see how feeling love equates to knowing God, or spiritual truth.

I'm not picking on you. I'm just asking the same question that I ask others who claim to have access to a higher understanding than I do. Tell me more. Give specifics. What is it like?

FIRST DO WHAT U R GUIDED ABOUT WITH FULL EFFORT,IF U DID NOT DO SO U HAVE NO RIGHT TO ANALYZE ANY TEACHING AS A FAILURE.
10%OF YOUR 24 HRS IS WHAT IS ASKED TO PUT IN
AND IF ONE DOES NOT DO IT WITH SINCERETY IT IS UR FAILURE .DO NOT EXPECT MIRACLES WITHOUT HARD WORK.WHICH OTHER TEACHING IN THIS WORLD ABOUT SPIRITUALITY U KNOW IS COMPARABLE,WHICH OTHER GURU IN THIS WORLD IS AS SPOTLESS AS OUR PRESENT MASTER.

Rex, your comment barely deserves a reply, because you speak out of ignorance.

But I'm pleased to offer you some information. First hand, direct knowledge.

For about thirty years I did what I was told, RSSB meditation and vow wise, with full effort and sincerity.

Most of that time, I put in a full 2 1/2 hours of meditation. Some years, when my daughter was young and my work was demanding, 1 1/2 hours or so.

So I'm entitled to analyze this teaching, since I gave it a very good shot. Decades worth, in fact.

Many other people are like me: long-time RSSB initiates who did almost everything right, but found that what was described never appeared.

You can criticize what I and others say on this blog. But you can't criticize our qualifications to say it.

Dear REX & Brian,

Kindly put your right palm on your heart and ask yourself how devoted you are/ were towards meditation. What answer do you get?

Keep this answer in your mind and proceed in meditation.

Listen to your Master's words in any discourse anytime anywhere, you will find He says do not count your efforts. It is the love which matters. Not that how much time you have spent. To sit in meditation, is simply to follow the instructions. Nothing ever comes from meditation.

When we are all the time boasting of our efforts, where is the achievement.

Our mind is like a six inches scale with the help of which we are trying to measure a light year distance.

I stop my scrible here.

Kindly do not consider my words any advice. I have written them as they have come to me.

with lots of love.

* To sit in meditation, is simply to follow the instructions. Nothing ever comes from meditation. *

This is akin to saying that the proscribed meditation practice is simply arbitrary, ie, on a whim. If the instruction is whimsical, then the purpose of meditation is (possibly) an excercise in obedience. Is this what you mean by "being devoted in meditation" Rakesh? That devotion is an obeyance to the whimsy of the master?

If so, can you please explain why obeying someone else's whimsy is a spiritual path?

Wow, the article above is the most honest and considered one I have read. Thanks so much Howard. I have also had basically every one of those thoughts, and also love that Rumi poem. I completely agree that I am still very fond of the master and am entirely fed up with the RS dogma. Having recently seen him in person, I am entirely convinced that he wants us to stand on our own two feet. He said that initiation is only the expression of an intention to mould oneself in a certain direction. He said we have gotten ourselves into this mess, and we must pull ourselves out. And when asked if someone initiated ba another RS master could be reinitiated by him, he said that Sant Mat is not about a name brand. The important thing is, what is someone doing mould their life. The whole emphasis was on walking the path, not on a belief szstem.

Rakesh, your comment makes as little sense to me as Rex's did. Religions are marvelous, the way the standard keeps changing. You never can pin them down.

So, let's see. RSSB says that meditation is all important; that this is the most important vow to keep -- the 2 1/2 hours of meditation that I did for decades.

But now you tell me, just as Christianity does, that meditation isn't important -- it's all about love. So the reason people don't have success in meditation is because they don't love enough.

Of course, one could argue -- and I guess I am -- that someone like me who devoted years of unpaid volunteer service to the guru who initiated me, and his successor, must have some love in his heart.

But even that isn't enough, apparently, because of the circular argument: if you had enough love, you would have realized the RSSB truth; since you didn't, you must not have had enough love.

Give me a break.

Adam wrote: "Having recently seen him in person, I am entirely convinced that he wants us to stand on our own two feet."

--This is contrary to traditional RSSB teachings. Satsangis are told to have complete faith in and rely on the master. This is unequivocal in the literature. Reliance on the grace of the guru is paramount...no standing on your own two
feet.

"He said we have gotten ourselves into this mess"

-- It's like we deliberately set out to screw ourselves up when at the same time RSSB teaches that it is all God's will, or it is all in the master's hands. It's like they're trying to mess with your head. This doesn't make sense. There is no mess unless you see it that way. What is just is, ain't it?

"He said that initiation is only the expression of an intention to mould oneself in a certain direction."

--This makes sense, but it is not what is taught. Again, a departure from traditional RSSB which says that at initiation the disciple is connected to the Shabd and that without initiation by a param sant sat guru the jiva or surat (soul) is destined to transmigrate on the wheel of eighty-four (chaurasi). Nothing is said about "intention" being the important thing. Actual initiation is a big deal in traditional RSSB.

It doesn't matter to me what Gurinder says. I am long disassociated with RSSB. My comments about RSSB on this blog are born out of an iterest, curiosity and familiarity due to past association.

However, if I were a Satsangi, this approach of Gurinder's would be troubling. Who's teachings are correct..Gurinder's or Charan's? If Gurinder is changing his master's (Charan's) teachings, who is legitimate? Gurinder is in his current position due to Charan's authority. If he says Charan was misleading in his approach, how do satsangis trust that Gurinder's is any less misleading?

Frankly, I think some of Gurinder's ideas about breaking away from the dogma, etc. of RSSB teachings is refreshing, but what does that make him? If he's right, what does that make Charan, Jagat, Sawan, Jaimal, Seth Shiv Dayal?

Just who is Gurinder Singh Dillon? Who are these other guru's?.. I would be asking.

Tuscon,

I just went to go see GSD after having been initiated for about a year, and having explored a lot of my doubts on this forum. I was feeling conflicted about some things, and I decided to try as much as I could to go with an open mind, not assuming I knew what SM is. After all, SM's number one principal is that the living guru trumps all ideas and past teachings. Having seen him, many of my doubts are resolved. For me, if there is cognitive dissonance between what I think is SM and what he says, I throw out what I think. He is extremely human, nonjudgmental, practical, common-sensical, and takes all of the drama out of the SM mythology. He would agree, I think with all of your many beautiful postings on the isness of is, but would add that unless one knows that from the inside out, that knowledge, like any other knowledge, is meaningless. Experience is the teacher. For example, materialism vansishes when we really understand that we can only sleep in one bed at the end of the day and wear one pair of clothes at a time--the rest is a burden. This understanding automatically creates nonattachment. Meditation can give understanding. We have often talked about meditation not working or working. I think talking about experiences, as tAo points out, is often a meaningless indicator either way. But if it can create the kind of understanding that we are awareness, soul, whatever, and not body, or mental impressions, than THAT is the miracle.

Adam,

I understand what you say about the living guru trumping all past writings and teachings. The LIVING guru is all-important in Sant Mat. But when the current guru seems to dismiss what his predecessors taught as fact, it would give me reason for pause.

I only saw GSD once in San Francisco in 1991. The vibe was uninspiring for me as it was for some others who later related more positive reactions to GSD's presence like you described.

If you feel a strong pull to GSD despite what you hear from the likes of me and especially tAo, who continuously presents the strongest logical/sceptical argument against RS, then what more need be said, to you anyway. Follow your heart, as they say, and best wishes.

Adam you said:

"I am entirely convinced that he wants us to stand on our own two feet."

-- If that's true then why are you even going to see him? Why don't you just "stand on (y)our own two feet"? Your actions don't jive with your supposedly being "convinced". Just practice what you preach. Standing on your own doesn't mean running to see him, or to see anyone.

"He said we have gotten ourselves into this mess, and we must pull ourselves out."

-- And what "mess" is that? Pull yourselves out of what? What "mess are YOU into? But for sure, HE got HIMSELF into a "mess".

"And when asked ... he said ... The whole emphasis was on walking the path, not on a belief szstem."

-- That's a load of crap. The "path" IS a belief system.

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

Regarding Rakesh's comments, I agree with Brian. Rakesh's comment makes little or no sense, and Rex's comment is simply not even worth reading. Why is it that so many of these RS satsangis are such morons and imbeciles?

Rakesh says that meditation isn't important -- that it's all only about love and obediance, and the reason people don't have success in meditation is because they don't love enough and aren't obediant enough. Give me a friggin break!!! As Brian pointed out that Rakesh is saying: "if you had enough love, you would have realized the RSSB truth; since you didn't, you must not have had enough love." ... Circular logic indeed.

Your arguement sucks Rakesh. It's absolute rubbish.


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


As Tucson pointed out about Adam's assertion that G.S. supposedly wants people to "stand on their own two feet", I also reiterate Tucson:

"This is contrary to traditional RSSB teachings. Satsangis are told to have complete faith in and rely on the master. This is unequivocal in the literature. Reliance on the grace of the guru is paramount...no standing on your own two feet."

And I reiterate Tucson on this also: "Nothing is said about "intention" being the important thing. Actual initiation is a big deal in traditional RSSB."

And I myself also agree with: "It doesn't matter to me what Gurinder says." Who the hell is Gurinder? Some cult joker pretending to be a wise man? As if what Gurinder says actually means anything at all. People who follow idiots like Gurinder, are themselves idiots as well.

Knowing all that I know about sant mat and RS, I also agree that "this approach of Gurinder's would be troubling." Charan taught a very different version of RS & Santmat than this joker Gurinder.

As Tucson pointed out: "Gurinder is in his current position due to Charan's authority. If he says Charan was misleading in his approach, how do satsangis trust that Gurinder's is any less misleading?"


"Just who is Gurinder Singh Dillon?"

-- Answer: A shalllow pretentious fraud masquerading as a spiritual master.

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

Adam wrote: "I just went to go see GSD after having been initiated for about a year ..... After all, SM's number one principal is that the living guru trumps all ideas and past teachings."

-- No that's NOT what sant mat teaches at all. Sant mat does NOT teach that the living guru "trumps" anything or anyone. It teaches that the present living master does not deviate one iota from the past Sant mat saints, and the teachings are timeless and never vary, and that the current master is a fullfillment and an embodiment of all past masters and the sant mat teachings. So Adam, your idea of Sant mat is very faulty and misinterpreted.

I also happened to be there when GSD was in San Francisco in 1991. And his vibe was definitely uninspiring, and it was also felt to be that way to some others as well.

And I also met with Charan at the Dera in 1984. There is absolutely no similarity between Charan and Gurinder. Gurinder is a sad joke compared to Charan. At least Charan strictly adhered to the Sant Mat of his predecessors.

But as for me continuously presenting "the strongest logical/sceptical argument against RS", I don't think so. It is actualyl RS itself that makes the strongest argument against it.

The problem, as I see it, is that far too many people (like Adam, Rakesh, Richard, Sid, and others) are far too gullible and too believing in what books and teachers and dogma tells them. They don't think for themselves. They give up their reason in exchange for blind faith and hopeful fantasies, and hollow 'sants' and saviors.

This is all due to their ignorance and lack of trust in their own existance, their own innate and intrinsic perfection.

Unfortunately, they don't 'follow their hearts'... but instead, they follow the minds and the words and the ideas and the dogma of others. The blind leading the blind, so to speak.

My advice to Adam is to really hear and take to heart the advice of those who have vastly more combined years of experience, more knowledge, more wisdom, more insight, and deeper realization than Gurinder has.

Why anyone would ever even think of following or listening to someone such as Gurinder is simply ludicrous.

Honestly, I have little or no sympathy for those who persist in such foolish stupidity.

Dear Brian,

It is simply not possible to respond to all the people here in one go. The comments of all of you have been read and noted.

Brian!I am aware of your meditation periods and association with RSSB. Your long hours in meditation can not be without love.

In fact there are two types of changes in the state of matter i.e. physical change and chemical change. I can relate your change during the period of your association with RSSB to physical change i.e. a change which is influenced by the surroundings and the moment those surroundings are removed, the matter returns to the same state. If the change is chemical, the matter does not return to the same state as the surroundings are removed.

In spirituality, the things are to be felt and not said or written. In all spiritual wrintings, words seem to be contradictory.

I regret words are inaqequate to express the feelings including this piece of writing itself.

A letter to all readers:

I would like to make clear my position regarding Sant Mat and the Radha Soami Mat and the RSSB organization (including its leader and guru).

I don't care whether other people find value and meaning in Sant Mat and RS, because that's their business.

I don't care whether they believe and follow the RS guru, because that's their business.

I don't care if they think that Sant Mat and RS is the highest, the truest, or the best path.

I don't care whether or not they were initiated.

I don't care if they practice Sant Mat meditation, or how long they have done so.

I don't care what their involvement with Sant Mat is.

They are all free to believe and do all these things... just as I am free not to believe.

The problem here has always been when other people (in this case, satsangis and would-be satsangis) try to tell me or tell others, or preach, that their way (Sant Mat or RS) is the only way, the one true path and teaching, the superior path and teaching, or the highest path and teaching... or that their master is the only true guru, the superior guru, or the highest guru... or that I or others have somehow "gone astray" because we don't believe what they believe, or what they preach, or do as they do... or that I have no right to my own personal opinions and/or criticisms about any spiritual path, philosopy, or guru (including RS).

As long as these satsangi followers, believers, and preachers continue to say or to do any of the above, then THEY are the ones who are have created a problem.

As long as they simply mind their own business, and just believe and practice whatever it is that they believe and practice, then would I have no quarrel with them.

But the moment that anyone starts trying to tell me how it is, or how it should be, or how I should be, or what I should believe, or that someone else (a so-called "master") knows better than I, or that someone else is more enlightened or more spiritual or wiser than I am, or that someone else is a true master and I should respect that and be their disciple, or that I am lost and going to hell if I don't practice their meditation or subscribe to and honor their path and guru.... then THAT is the moment that the problem starts.

I hope all of you RS satsangis read this, so that you'll get the message for once and for all:

I don't have to follow your path, and I don't have to follow your guru. And I can have any opinions (pro or con) about any path or any guru that I so choose, and it's none of your damn business. If you like your path and you like your guru, then just be content with that. You can have any opinions amd beliefs that you like, just as long as you don't go foisting them on other people, telling them that they are wrong because they don't believe or follow or meditate as you do.


So it's about time that you grow up and accept that your way - your spiritual path - is alright for you, but it's not necessariy everyone else's way... and it doesn't have to be. I don't have to like or respect your guru, or believe the stuff that you believe. If you don't like my opinions or criticisms, then go hang out somewhere else. No one is obliged to respect or honor or follow or believe in your path or in your guru... just as you are not obliged to agree with me or see things my way.


Tao,
I understand where you are coming from - this isn't the first time you've made your position clear. But given that Brian has continuously discussed RSSB on his blog over the past three and a half years (108 RSSB entries to be exact),then I guess people are going to be responding to his content rather than how good he looks in a Hawaian shirt.
One would presume that Brian has not left RSSB behind - that it's still part of his journey in some sort of way. I am interested to see whether he will move on, and what his focus will become - this sort of intellectual/spiritual evolution interests me in people.
Similarly I have found both your and Tuscon's journey interesting. I don't agree with half of what you have to say, and also find many RSSB posters living in a state of muddlement. But we all have our point of view, and I guess herein lies the value of all these commenters - that individuality is the norm, and expresses itself in many different ways. What would be the point of reading this blog and its comments if everybody agreed with another?
I'm here to celebrate our differences.

Dear Helen,
A successful child in the class of a school is the one who attends school regularly, does homework and pays attention to instructions of the teacher and besides devotes sufficient time in the studies. Above all, he requires having love for his course of study without which rest of all activities become insipid and would render the child useless sooner or later. It is the atmosphere that one has to carry, I believe.

If my meditation does not help me improve (i.e. to bring about a cool sense at heart, understating the fellow beings etc., etc., which a practitioner of any faith feels and just not that he expresses) I have to immediately reprimand myself. Meditation has to bring about a sense of love for the entire creation as it sublimates us and widens our field of view.

These feelings are to be touched upon by following any technique of meditation.

If we talk to the followers of any path or cult, they will always say that their path is the best and they must because that sense helps them to pursue it better.

Buddha’s right meditation is to be looked into.

With love.

Helo Rakesh

You write: *Meditation has to bring about a sense of love for the entire creation as it sublimates us and widens our field of view.*

This is in direct contradiction of your earlier post where you say *Nothing ever comes from meditation.*

So which is true? Meditation does nothing or meditation should promote love?

You also write: *A successful child in the class of a school is the one who attends school regularly, does homework and pays attention to instructions of the teacher and besides devotes sufficient time in the studies.*

That description fits two of my sisters: they worked and studied hard to gain their qualifications. However, myself and my third sister didn't study so hard yet we both got better qualifications and at higher levels than the other two. Natural aptitude affects the result.

Then again, any child's study is effective only long as the teacher is effective: if the teacher doesn't know what they are doing, or is bluffing their way through, this will effect the student's achievements.

Helen said: "Then again, any child's study is effective only long as the teacher is effective:"

I relate to this Helen. When I was in college I went to a large university. Our classes were big so we could not ask questions, and the professors did not prepare their lectures well because they were busy doing research. We had to go to graduate students if we needed help, but there were long lines and the graduates were insulting and not very helpful.

Thus we students had to get together and learn the material on our own. I worked hard to get a C the first semester.

Then I went to a smaller college where we only had 20 students in our class and the proffessor was not doing research and he prepared his lessons well and if we had questions he patiently answered them. I had no trouble learning the material and getting an A in the course.

Sant Mat is more like my first college where the professor is not giving us any real help, and the subject is difficult. Thus it is frustrating and we are all failing.

TAO,
I didnt realize you felt that people were trying to get you to follow RSSB. I frankly dont't care at all whether you do or not. I enjoy exploring ideas on this site, and have no desire to get you 'back on the path.' Whether others do, I cannot say, but I look at all folks here as having interesting and valuale stories to tell...

Tuscon wrote
--This is contrary to traditional RSSB teachings. Satsangis are told to have complete faith in and rely on the master. This is unequivocal in the literature. Reliance on the grace of the guru is paramount...no standing on your own two
feet.

I am not sure if 'responsiblity' and 'submission' are actually incompatible concepts, though they seem to be at first. By submission, one follow the teachers' advice, which allow the student to take responsibility for her inner state. It is a thought provoking dialiectic in any case.

Also, 'getting ourselves into this mess' is meant more as long term issue, as in 'awareness becoming form,' as opposed to 'having sinned in this life.'

Dear Helen,

"Nothing ever comes from meditation." is an expression wherein I have tried to give entire credit to almighty without whose grace nothing can be accomplished. And almighty is nothing else but an all pervading internal energy which is sustaining this creation.

I repeat "If my meditation does not help me improve (i.e. to bring about a cool sense at heart, understanding the fellow beings etc., etc., which a practitioner of any faith feels and just not that he expresses) I have to immediately reprimand myself. Meditation has to bring about a sense of love for the entire creation as it sublimates us and widens our field of view. These feelings are to be touched upon by following any technique of meditation.

I also repeat "I regret words are inaqequate to express the feelings including this piece of writing itself."

With love


Tao inquired on April 30:"Why is it that so many of these RS satsangis are such morons and imbeciles?"

You were an RS satsangi once? Well, then, perhaps they are such morons and imbeciles for the same reason(s) you once were?

Rakesh wrote;

"I repeat "If my meditation does not help me improve (i.e. to bring about a cool sense at heart, understanding the fellow beings etc., etc., which a practitioner of any faith feels and just not that he expresses) I have to immediately reprimand myself. Meditation has to bring about a sense of love for the entire creation as it sublimates us and widens our field of view. These feelings are to be touched upon by following any technique of meditation."

--It would be interesting, if the regular commentors here, could write a short comment, explaining their understanding as to the purpose of meditation.

Is it to bring about a 'sense' of love?
Is it a practical tool One would use to emmerse oneself in the Absolute truth.
Is it a technique to reduce stress?
Is it all of the above, neither?

This is another attempt on my part to initiate some interesting conversation.
Nothing more or less...Roger

Adam wrote: "By submission, one follow the teachers' advice, which allow the student to take responsibility for her inner state."

That is fine, but it is not what Sant mat teaches. Charan Singh used to say, "Grace and effort go hand in hand", but ultimately everything is dependent on the Sat Guru's grace. This is not standing on your own two feet. It is like standing in line obediently at the welfare office waiting for a government hand-out according to it's discretion, standards and judgement. Only in this case, it is not even known if the "government" has any funds or the ability to give them.

Rakesh, you ignore the fact that there are competent teachers and there also are incompetent teachers.

A student won't learn if he or she has faith, devotion, and love for a poor teacher. Exactly the opposite will happen: ignorance.

Tucson:

So who is the REAL sat guru?

supposedly, the REAL sat guru is Shabd.

also... Sant Mat can't be taught, only caught. [Read that in one of the RS books.] The mind catches hold of the Sound, or the Shabd. (?) One meditates and catches hold of the sound and vacates the body, or they do not.

Also I think that Sat Guru is supposed to be much more than a mere teacher. That's where the religious dogma comes in handy. After all, any goof-ball can "teach" Sant Mat, and in fact, they do.


GRNosenothing, as usual

GRnose,

You said: "You were an RS satsangi once? Well, then, perhaps they are such morons and imbeciles for the same reason(s) you once were?"

-- I had suspected that some smart-ass would try and say that, so you don't surprise me. But I also thought that being a "smart" ass, you would be "smart" enough to realize that I was not including or referring to myself.

Nevertheless, it is true that I did happen receive RS inititation at one time many years ago. But mere initiation does not carry any sort of baggage with it. Also, I never considered myself a "satsangi". I have never followed or identified myself with groups, or defined myself or identified myself as being a "satsangi". And a mere half-hour superficial "initiation" event, where the mantra and the simple meditation was instructed, did not automatically make me into an RS believer, an RS follower, or an RS disciple... or into a mindless RS dogma parroting imbecile like Rex. And moreover, my comment was specifically in reference to dogma babbling fools like Rex, and not to each and every RS satsangi.

So NO... I was never a moron or an imbecile for the reasons that they are, or for that matter, for any reason.

You then said to Tucson:

"supposedly, the REAL sat guru is Shabd."

-- That is one opinion, one of the ideas that RS presents, but that's all it is - an opinion, an idea. As it turns out, there are various definitions of "sat guru", depending on who you are asking and what their agenda is. If you want to get literal, then "sat" simply means Being or Existence or Truth; and "guru" means en-LIGHT-ener or Revealer. So therfore "sat-guru" simply means 'One who Reveals (the truth of) Existence/Being'.

It does NOT mean "Shabd" etc etc, which is a distortion and a misreprsentation of the real meaning of sat-guru.

"Sant Mat can't be taught, only caught."

-- OK, but then why are they trying so ardantly to teach it? ... such as with numerous books, satsang meetings, guru lectures, and so on? And who is it that is actaully going to "catch it", and from whom or from where is it going to be "caught"?

"The mind catches hold of the Sound, or the Shabd. One meditates and catches hold of the sound and vacates the body, or they do not."

-- But this presupposes the idea that one is actually already IN a body to begin with. I don't subscribe to that notion. And as for the "Shabd", the shabd is simply the 'resonance', as it were, of existence, of beingness, of the absolute, of sat.

"I think that Sat Guru is supposed to be much more than a mere teacher."

-- Actually, a "Sat Guru" is not a "teacher" at all. A sat guru is as I described above. A sat-guru does not teach... other than by example alone. An actual sat-guru doesn't "do" or teach anything. A sat-guru simply abides in/as SAT.

"That's where the religious dogma comes in handy. After all, any goof-ball can "teach" Sant Mat, and in fact, they do."

-- Yes, that's true. But a real sat-guru doesn't teach any dogma, and teach anything for that matter. The truth is, there is really nothing at all to "teach" (spiritully speaking). A sat-guru simply LIVES it... and IS it. The sant mat version of what a "sat guru" is, is distorted and skewed to support the religion and dogma of sant mat. So if you really want to understand, then don't listen to the sant mat and RS dogma.... just look into your own awareness, your own existence.


"So who is the REAL sat guru?

supposedly, the REAL sat guru is Shabd."

"also... Sant Mat can't be taught, only caught."

--Then where is the need for GSD if he isn't REAL and he can't teach anything?
(No answer required. Just being a smart ass.)

"One meditates and catches hold of the sound and vacates the body, or they do not."

--I am assuming you mean that vacating the body is spiritual progress. I would ask, is the VALUE of vacating the body any different than being in the body? In either case, Awareness is fully present and complete. It is only phenomenal appearance that varies in transitory states of consciousness in or out of the body. Besides, as far as Awareness is concerned, relative concepts of 'in' or 'out' do not apply. At what point in Awareness would there be an 'in' or 'out'? Wouldn't you (Awareness) be HERE in either case? In other words, it would seem impossible for Awareness to be outside of itself and where would the boundary be to define Awareness as inside itself?

"Also I think that Sat Guru is supposed to be much more than a mere teacher."

--I now have difficulty devoting my life to a supposition. Others may feel differently.

Dear Brian,

You have raised probably the most pertinent question. A competent teacher is a must in spirituality. If the entire life is lost in finding one, I think it is not the time lost but time gained. One has to look beyond time and space. One must believe that things do not end with decay of physical body of the guru or disciple.

It reminds me someone having said, “MAA MUNDO WA GURU KI JA SE BHARAM NA JAI”. It means that mother of that teacher must be beheaded who is not able to clear doubts of his disciples, for she is responsible for giving birth to such a wretched teacher.

Rakesh said: "If the entire life is lost in finding one, I think it is not the time lost but time gained."

--Standard RS rhetoric.

"It means that mother of that teacher must be beheaded who is not able to clear doubts of his disciples, for she is responsible for giving birth to such a wretched teacher."

--What a stupid, ignorant saying, even if it is not to be taken literally. They should cut the head off whoever thought that one up...Mohammed? Osama bin Laden?

Dear tucson,

Why to get so much irritated by somebody's saying. It is democratic to utter anything or everything. These are metaphorical ways to
put forth one's feelings.

Try to judge the plight of Brian who has spent 30 years of precious life and got nothing.

May be his reation will be stronger than beheading a fake teacher's mother.

I hope it does not irritate you further.

with regards,

Rakesh wrote:
"Try to judge the plight of Brian who has spent 30 years of precious life and got nothing."
Rakesh - How have you arrived at the conclusion that Brian has spent 30 years of his life getting nothing? Hasn't he been on his own journey of exploration? Doesn't he now stand on new thresholds of discovery and understanding? Why do you need to make a something or nothing out of Brian's life experience?
There's a much bigger picture here Rakesh -think about it - you might discover something.


Poohbear, well spoken. Couldn't have said it better myself. It'd take too long to list all the things I've gotten from my 30+ years of involvement with Sant Mat/RSSB.

The statement that it's "nothing" reveals that many initiates consider that unless you follow the precise RSSB party line, you've wandered into a spiritual wilderness.

Quite the contrary. I've ended up in an energetic, pleasant, productive, happy place. It just took me a while to get here because I needed to get over deep-seated notions of what a Path is.

Dear Poohbear & Brian,

I am delighted to read above comments.

Warm regards,

I agree with Poohbear. Brian has not wasted any years.

To assume that "Brian who has spent 30 years of precious life and got nothing", is a mistake.

To assume that if "the entire life is lost in finding one (a competent teacher) ... it is not the time lost but time gained", is also a mistake.

Rakesh also said: "that teacher ... who is not able to clear doubts of his disciples ... such a wretched teacher."

-- That is a myth. If that was true, then each and every teacher, incuding all sant mat teachers, are "wretched".


Reading over Brian's original post and Howard's well articulated thoughts, I arrive at a thought for my day:
If the true essence of Sant Mat is grasped and independently put to the test, then perhaps the atman can break free from its cages. But if group behavioural RSSB is embraced as the substitute for the real endeavour, then surely an additional cage has been created.


poohbear said,"If the true essence of Sant Mat is grasped and independently put to the test, then perhaps the atman can break free from its cages." sounds very true, simple and appealing.
But, is it practical? Without a competent teacher......................HATS OFF.

I am quoting myself here:

*Then again, any child's study is effective only long as the teacher is effective:*

I forgot to add that one can be the best teacher in the world, but if one's subject is bullshit then one only teaches bullshit. And bullshit is still bullshit, no matter how well it's taught.

Dear poohbear,
I believe you are right.I was initiated 35 years ago and from that day to this I have had absolutely nothing to do with RSSB.I have lived my own life and
done what I have felt right to do.
From the word go the Sant Mat meditation worked.
At initiation I entered into a state of euphoria which persisted for over 6mths.
During my years of meditation I repeatedly,spontaneously entered into altered states of consciousness which brought either inner visions or deep psycological insights.My character
changed for the better(even my wife and children said so and they are usually the harshest of critics).
I came to understand that the real guru is my true inner essence and not some guy on a stage.
For a while,I became confused,when reading about RSSB on the internet as my own experience was so
different.
Lately matters have cleared.To which I give thanks
to Brian in particular for starting this blog and
to everybody who contributes ,both the regulars and not so regular.Many of the discussions have had deep and profound impacts on my understanding and
opened intuitive insights which were deep and meaningful.
Thank you all once again and thank you for just
being yourselves.Please continue to be so

Oped,

In your comment above, you mentioned,

From the word go the Sant Mat meditation worked.

"At initiation I entered into a state of euphoria which persisted for over 6mths.
During my years of meditation repeatedly,spontaneously entered into altered states of consciousness which brought either inner visions or deep psycological insights.My character
changed for the better(even my wife and children said so and they are usually the harshest of critics).
I came to understand that the real guru is my true inner essence and not some guy on a stage. For a while,I became confused,when reading about RSSB on the internet as my own experience was so different. Lately matters have cleared."

---With your meditation experiences, and the guru being your true inner essence, how did matters change? Your comment, is the first, I have read that expresses some meditation experiences. Could you write another comment, expanding on your experiences. In addition, clarify what you meant by, "matters have cleared."

I'm not finding fault with you. I just am curious to read more about your meditations. Thanks...Roger


Dear Roger,
Inner experiences for me were messages or visual answers to things that puzzled me.They would be possibly valueless for somebody else.I was often
spontaneously sucked into the third eye and then
entered a visionary dimension.I dont want to say
more than that.The third eye experience was exactly
as described by NDE's.Long tunnel,light at the end etc.
What I meant by "matters have cleared for me" is much
that came to me I did not understand.The informative
and in depth discussions on this blog have greatly
elucitaded my understandings of things I saw and
experienced and I am very grateful to everyone for
their time and effort ,even if it wasnt meant for me.I hope this helps.

Obed,

Thanks for your reply.

I understand the private nature of One's meditation experiences. I think, I have learned that from questions posed to others in past threads. Therfore, I will not ask for any further questions regarding your personal business.

However, you did mention,

"The third eye experience was exactly
as described by NDE's.Long tunnel,light at the end etc."

---What was described by NDE? Is this NDE something that can be read somewhere?

Again, no big deal, I'm not trying to join anything.
Thanks,
Roger

Regarding Poohbear's comments...

I DO agree with this part of Poohbear's comment:

"if group behavioural RSSB is embraced as the substitute for the real endeavour, then surely an additional cage has been created."

But I DO NOT agree with this part of Poohbear's comment:

"If the true essence of Sant Mat is grasped and independently put to the test, then perhaps the atman can break free from its cages."

-- The Atman is never in any "cages", so does not need to "break free" from any "cages". To assume that is a contradiction. The Atman is defined as the being the Absolute - the unborn, unbounded, limitless, infinite, indestructable, and eternal reality of Existence-Consciousness-Bliss, the SELF. Atman, being infinite, is not trapped within anything. To think that "perhaps the atman can break free from its cages" is a dualistic conception... it is a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature of the Atman.

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

Regarding Rakesh's comments:

Then, in Rakesh's comment (regarding poohbear's comment "If the true essence of Sant Mat is grasped and independently put to the test, then perhaps the atman can break free")...

Rakesh has said: "sounds very true, simple and appealing. But, is it practical? Without a competent teacher..."?

-- First of all, the Atman is already FOREVER FREE, so it does not need to "break free" of anything. Therefore, an incorrect and faulty concept such as that which was proposed, does NOT "sound very true, simple and appealing".

As for Rakesh's next comment about whether or not it is "practical without a competent teacher"... I would say that it is quite impractical for the reason that I just gave.

As for "a competent teacher", no teacher can effect or bring about something that is fundamentally ALWAYS ALREADY THE CASE. In other words, no teacher can liberate OR "break free" the Atman, simply because the Atman is already eternally unbounded, limitless, and free. To presuppose that the Atman is somehow 'in a cage' is nothing more than the ignorance of duality. That which is never bound in the first place, does not need to be liberated. So then Rakesh's question of a having "competent teacher" is irrelevant and does not even enter into it.

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

And finally, I very much agree with Helen, who said:

"one can be the best teacher in the world, but if one's subject is bullshit then one only teaches bullshit. And bullshit is still bullshit, no matter how well it's taught."


So who is the REAL sat guru?

supposedly, the REAL sat guru is Shabd."

"also... Sant Mat can't be taught, only caught."

--Then where is the need for GSD if he isn't REAL and he can't teach anything?
(No answer required. Just being a smart ass.)

******Very funny ;) I don't know if any guru could teach me anything. I always wanted to teach him GSD something though. I just kinda pretended that I wanted to listen to his great ideas which always seemed pretty boring compared to mine. Granted, this is quite beside the most excellent point you you made.
[Also, I wasn't expressing what I believed, rather what I understood the teachin's and preachin's of RS to be.]


"One meditates and catches hold of the sound and vacates the body, or they do not."

--I am assuming you mean that vacating the body is spiritual progress. I would ask, is the VALUE of vacating the body any different than being in the body? In either case, Awareness is fully present and complete. It is only phenomenal appearance that varies in transitory states of consciousness in or out of the body. Besides, as far as Awareness is concerned, relative concepts of 'in' or 'out' do not apply. At what point in Awareness would there be an 'in' or 'out'? Wouldn't you (Awareness) be HERE in either case? In other words, it would seem impossible for Awareness to be outside of itself and where would the boundary be to define Awareness as inside itself?

*****Wow. More than progress, PROCESS. Has to do with physical death, the process, I think. Thus, going within catching the sound --that process--- supposedly proves that personal Awareness is independent of the physical body, and that the soul exists, and that it is immortal. Also, I understood that vacating the body was preparation for physical death and avoiding rebirth.
Again, this is not what I personally believe, but rather what I think they believe. If I remember right. Do I?

"Also I think that Sat Guru is supposed to be much more than a mere teacher."

--I now have difficulty devoting my life to a supposition. Others may feel differently.

***Ya, me too.

Obed,
Thanks for your open and frank response. I had a similar experience in the early 70's, and have maintained a mental separation of RSSB and Shabd and Dharma practice all this time.
There may be a reason that this happened. I had numerous experiences when I was very young from the early 50's onwards whereby I uncontrollably withdrew from my body and went into an altered state of consciousness. I didn't have a clue what was happening at the time. I loved the visions and the unencumbered state of being, but the "re-docking" with my body was horrible. It was so bad that I came to dread the withdrawal. This lasted a few years and stopped. It started again when I was about 15, but only for 3 or 4 times.
When I was 19, I came across my first book on Yoga. There weren't very many books around then in the mid 60's, but it gave me a taste of possibility. It led me to meditation practice and controlled withdrawal and return. I had no teacher and reading about the lives of the self-titled spiritual teachers, by 1970 considered all gurus to be a bunch of gangsters.
Despite this, I came across Sant Mat and was initiated in 1971. I didn't find group activities resonated with my state of mind and had minimal contact. Today I can take it or leave it - it is simply what it is. Whether we do a Sant Mat method of meditation or another method above the eyes doesn't make any difference for learning to keep the body and mind still, and bringing about an inner concentration followed by a controlled withdrawal. It is what happens once in this state that is of greater significance. Anway, this is my experience. I may be totally misguided, but I have enjoyed my life and its spiritual explorations. They have been meaningful to me. I, like you, am a changed person. A sceptic might say that these changes would have taken place regardless, but I know the manner in which I have been informed during inner states of consciousness, and therefore respect the higher self for this contribution to my existence.
A lot of debate goes on in this forum about dualistic vs non-dualistic. Because of the demands and confines of my body, I have found my everyday existence to be dualistic, yet in other states of consciousness that gradually disappears. My life's endeavour is to reach a totally non-dualistic state.
All these things can be debated intellectually, but personal experience wins the day for me. And if they turn out to be misguided, then? It's an enjoyable ride anyway.
I visit this blog because I find other people's journey interesting. I don't ascribe any right or wrong to what anyone else does, because I expect we all exist in uncertainty.
Have a good life.

Hi Roger,
NDE is near death experience.See the following
http://www.near-death.com/

Hi poobear,
Thanks

hi poohbear,
sorry left out the "h"

Hi poohbear,

You mentioned in your above comment,

"Whether we do a Sant Mat method of meditation or another method above the eyes doesn't make any difference for learning to keep the body and mind still, and bringing about an inner concentration followed by a controlled withdrawal. It is what happens once in this state that is of greater significance."

---The 'inner concentration followed by a controlled withdrawal' ....any further comments, you could write, regarding what that statement means? How is it controlled? The 'third eye' seems like a symbol of something.

Hopefully, there is more to discribe, regarding these meditation experiences.
Feel free to write more.

Hi Obed,

I scanned through the NDE website. I remember reading thru that site over two years ago. The NDE based on belief systems is not that interesting. In addition, the NDE concept, seems too gimicky, or has the capacity to be overtaken by gimickry. Thats my opinion. Again, no big deal..

OBED stated:

"The informative and in depth discussions on this blog have greatly elucitaded my understandings of things I saw and
experienced..."

And here I assumed that the things we were
to experience *inside* would (at the very least) greatly elucidate the world we experienced eyes-open-outside.! Sheesh. So after going *inside* one may be stuck with TWO confusing worlds? Anyhow ODED and POOHBEAR: err... What happened to your guru(s)? Thought they were the ones to turn to for needed elucidations of interior confusions? Kinda hard to hunt them down outside these days, but what about inside?

Also question for OBED and POOHBEAR (or any other interior travel people):

How much did your experiences conform to the preachin's of Sant Mat? --- (Stars, Sun, Moon, Regions, Sounds, sequence of those regions and sounds, Radiant Form of the Master, MahaSunn, etc.??? Not asking out of simple curiosity. Think it is vital to know if there really IS an interior process that happens in the way talked about in the books. [I once asked David Lane this same question ---he experienced interior stuff as well. If I remember correctly he said that it DID happen in much the same way talked about in the books. Yet still there are different 'levels' or depths....for example one may have gone *inside* but not to the depth of MahaSunn.....

Also ---there seems to be great reluctance to frankly share what is experienced in meditation. I wonder if this is because people still kinda believe that if they talk about their interior experiences that there is a chance that those experiences will cease?

thank you both -- GHN

Poohbear, thanks for sharing your story above.

And I know what you mean by having "a mental separation of RSSB and Shabd and Dharma practice".

I too experienced many altered states of consciousness and visions during that same period of time, athough I did not have quite the same problem as you did with returning to an ordinary state. It was not anything to do with the body that was difficult, but rather the re-integrating into the prevalent socio-cultural consciousness matrix.

I was already deeply into meditation and living as a yogi in India by 1970, and I only came across the RS path some years later back in the USA. And I wasn't much into the group thing either and rarely if ever went to any of their (rather boring) satsangs after the first few.

And I also agree about taking it or leaving it, and that "it is simply what it is". Which basically means that I just have no use for it, and I also find most all of the satsangis that I have come across to be a pretty narrow-minded and inexperienced bunch of people.

And like you, I too "have enjoyed my life and its spiritual explorations". Everyting is meaningful... until it becomes superseded by something more meaningful. So I understand that not eveyone sees things my way. But I don't expect them to. I think the problem always seems to occur when (and because) other people don't like anyone or anything which challenges their beliefs - the beliefs that they subscribe to. For myself, I choose not to believe anything. For me, beliefs and spiritual practices are like a dimension of imagination that has absolutely nothing to do with the reality of the always ever-fresh ever-fleeting present moment. So every and all forms of spirituality and spiritual practice are like nothing more than a babble of words, ideas, imaginary beliefs and nonsense to me. And life is always what is happening in the meantime.

And I too am a "changed person".... but only because everthing changes and nothing ever remains the same for very long.

You say that your "life's endeavour is to reach a totally non-dualistic state"... and that "personal experience wins the day for me". To that I would respond thus: You cannot "reach" that "state", because it is not apart from you. As long as you are seeking it, you can never actualy find it or know it. For there is nothing to seek. Duality and non-duality are just two faces of the same one thing... and that one "thing" is Existence itself, here and now. There is absolutey nothing you can do to achieve it... because there is no "you" that is separate from it. That is why all forms of spirituality are futile and pointless. What you seek is always already the case. What you seek is what you already ARE. All forms of spirituality are predicated upon a fundamental misunderstanding.

As soon as you completely let go of all spiritual seeking, of all of the various habits of that seeking, and simply allow existence/life itself to go on naturally as it is, then it will all become clear.

Young children know it best because children have not yet acquired all these obscurations - these ideas and beliefs and goals. They are simply totally aware, alive and enjoying in the instant of the ever-fresh living moment.

Like you said: "I expect we all exist in uncertainty". Yes, that "uncertainty"... is IT. Remain in that uncertainty. That is the ever-fresh but ever-fleeting moment. That uncertainty is the threshold.


GRNose 'notin,

I know you asked others and not me, but here is my take, and my own answer to your queries about inner experiences:


Unlike other RS folks, I have NO problem discussing my own experiences. And I have experienced ALL of the things that are described in the books, but not necessarily in the same over-romanicised version and way that they are described and embellished in order to enchant seekers.

The different inner sounds and musical tones are merely levels of integration during the transition from conceptual thought and ideation, into pure perception (so any attempting to visualize, as in Dhyan, is actually counter-productive). And also the sounds are not limited to those that RS literature describes.

The so-called stars moon and sun are not actually literal forms. They are used merely as images that represent different levels and phases of LIGHT and of subject-object consciousness re-orientation and integration.

The so-called 'crooked tunnel' is merely the onset and appearance of, the approach to and traversing of what can better be described as the universal mandala of awareness in hyperdimensional inner-space. Just as the other levels and phases, it is simply the continuation of the process of the dissolving of the subjective-objective dimension of awareness, and moving into the primordial integrated state.

The maha-sunn or great void is not quite as ominous as it sounds, or as problematic as it is portrayed in the lierature, and can and will be naturally traversed without any so-called master's assistance, guidance, or accompaniment. At this point there is no existence of any separate forms or entities such as "a master" anyway. The lesser voids up to and including the maha-sunn void is simply the reverse of the brilliant white light.

The entry into the stage of sat-lok or "sach-khand" is merely the final subsidance of all subjective-objective dualistic conceptual thought including both light and voidness. It is a stage of complete and total integration, or of 'Clear Light' that beyond or free of the obscurations and dualities of perceived light and darkness and images. It cannot be adequately described conceptually, except as a state of unborn uncreated primordial awareness that is unobscured by any sense of separation or contraction or duality.

The other so-called stages above that (alakh, agam, and anami) are merely a dualistic play on words, and actually have no real existence as "higher" levels or planes beyond sat-lok. And remember that sat-lok is merely a state of consciousness, not an actual separate plane or world of existence. Everthing is already existing in sat-lok. That's what sat-lok IS... Existence or Beingness... Awareness.

In any case, I have experienced all those levels and on different occasions (and even long before I ever contacted RS), and it is not so unusual or so difficult to attain those experiences... and they certainly have nothing to do with "vacating the body" or with being a "master" or a "sant". That sort of idea and belief merely represents an orientation of bodily identification and conceptual duality, and sant/guru-cultism.

Furthermore, no "master" gives any "inner" assistance or guidance from within. That is a complete fantasy and myth. There is nothing "within"... except for awareness. There are no masters flying around on mystic magic carpets ready to take you to sach-khand. That is a complete illusion and fabrication meant to make people feel secure and trusting that someone, some savior, will guide them. But no guidance is ever forthcoming. No matter what people imagine the see in mediation, it is all nothing but the play, the imaginary phenomena, of the mind.

And in RS, the so-called "master" is never available anyway, not even for any sort of outer guidance. The entire "guidance" thing is an absolute lie and a SHAM that is presented and perpetuated in order to to keep people believing and meditating, and keep them doing seva and donations, etc

Bottom line: Anyone can achieve those altered states by meditation or other means. But doing so is always temporary and has no real significance or value.

There is nothing you can do to prepare for death...except to just LIVE LIFE in the moment... or rather to let Existence or Life LIVE ITSELF in the moment... as it is always doing anyway.


Roger,
I wrote: "Whether we do a Sant Mat method of meditation or another method above the eyes doesn't make any difference for learning to keep the body and mind still, and bringing about an inner concentration followed by a controlled withdrawal. It is what happens once in this state that is of greater significance."

And you responded: The 'inner concentration followed by a controlled withdrawal' ....any further comments, you could write, regarding what that statement means? How is it controlled? The 'third eye' seems like a symbol of something.

What I have described is the entry level of most yogas and systems that meditate above the eyes. It is the exercise of learning to concentrate above the eyes instead of only on the forms around us. With this concentration comes a stillness that allows us to use more subtle areas of the mind than we were previously used to doing.
The third eye, as it is commonly called, is not a symbol of something, nor is it a physical organ as such. It is simply a way of saying that we are seeing within. Just as we use eyes to see external forms, someone came up with the idea of calling inner seeing, a third eye. It is something that happens automatically as a by-product of holding the mind's focus for longish periods in the area above the eyes.
This whole process is simply technique - there is nothing spiritual about it. It is simply a step at the beginning of activating subtle attributes of the mind.
Not all systems use this technique. There are numerous schools of thought and their respective methods. There is also no right or wrong about any of them. Anything that stimulates the use of the subtle faculties of the mind is a starting point.
My use of the term 'controlled withdrawal' was probably not accurate. It would have been better described as 'structured withdrawal'. I merely wanted to differentiate it from uncontrolled or spontaneous withdrawal. Spontaneous withdrawal is not uncommon - Obed has described his early experiences as such. Not too much weight should be put on any of this as it is only the first jump over the garden wall (so to speak). Once over the wall, there is not much that can be communicated in words. It's even hard to articulate what one experiences back to oneself, let alone to other people. All our language has developed around our need and desire to describe the physical world around us. it becomes a limited language when attempting to describe the subtle states of mind, its workings, and its experience.
I hope this has clarified the original point made.

GRNose notin'
I think Tao has answered the questions you put forward.
I might add however that all the stuff about regions and levels etc. tend to be taken too literally when they were only ever meant to give a general indication of something other than what we see around us. States of subtle mental or spiritual existence don't present themselves in forms in the way our physical existence does.
The Mystic, Rumi wrote that, "Whatever we think those states of existence will be like - we will be wrong." Our current state of reasoning starts to disappear the moment we jump over the first garden wall. We just don't get it, and we're not going to get it chewing the fat with each other.
So I can only say it again - don't take Sant Mat books or any books literally. They are a vague and general indication of something that requires direct experience. And that experience will demonstrate how inadequate words and descriptions are.

Tao,
I enjoyed reading your response. It would feel unatural if we agreed on all things. I respect your journey and your freedom to express opinions.
I'm quite happy to be wrong about many things, as long as I know that my thinking and feeling faculties are still giving everything their best shot. I put ideology reasonably low on my list of life's priorities. And belief even lower. My state of mind from moment to moment gets highest priority. I don't think old Baba Free John got a lot right, but I still think his book title, "Be Here Now" is a bit of a positive anthem.
And now I have some plumbing to fix......

Dear All,
Great discussion!.TAo you,although you did not know it,got me started on self-enquiry.I have been doing it now for about a year.One experience which occured
6 months after I started I will describe.I was going through "who am I?" and doing "I am not the body" "not the thoughts " etc.When suddenly the thought hit me
"I am NOW" and I just cant be anywhere else but NOW. One
can read such a thing a million times and perhaps only on the millionth and one time BOOMB! it clicks.
When you ,tAo talk of living in the moment do
you mean it as a psychological state.?Even while
writing this I am aware of being present but it
is not a time thing.
Thanks

tAo,
on your journey, would you have been able to give up all practices without having satisfied your curiosity of ´going inside´?

Poohbear,

Fyi, it wasn't Bubba Free John (aka Da Free John, and now just "Adi Da") who wrote "Be Here Now".

It was actually Baba Ram Dass (aka Dr Richard Alpert) who wrote "Be Here Now".

(and btw, both of whom I have met and have spoken with personally many years ago)

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

Obed,

Self-enquiry is fine, but try to understand that it is not merely asking "who am I?", or of saying "I am not the body not the thoughts etc".

It is simply the intention to discover what you really are underneath it all.

You asked: When you tAo, talk of living in the moment, do you mean it as a psychological state?"

-- No... It means being simply aware of the ever-fresh ever-fleeting moment.... the instance present... and the instant presence. But you cannot DO it. It is simply happening. So just allow yourself to remain in that instant present. It is not a "state". It is just the happening of, the unfolding of, your life from moment to moment. It doesn't matter what happens in the moment, because the moment is always fleeting, but also ever-fresh. So there is nothing to manipulate. It is kind of like like surfing... just staying with the ever-fresh moment of awareness without holding to thoughts or ideas about anything.


"Even while writing this I am aware of being present but it is not a time thing."

-- It is not time... Time is just an idea of past and future. It is simply the IS-ness of the ever-fresh timeless moment. No inquiry is necessary. No thought is necessary. Just like sights and sounds do...thoughts also just come and go. Just let it all happen - let it all arise and then subside and vanish naturally - and just remain in the timeless moment. It doesn;t matter where you are or what is occuring. Just remain aware in the ever-fresh moment. Nothing else is ever needed, or can even be done. You will see that it will all unfold quite naturally and effortlessly.

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

Adam, you asked:

"on your journey, would you have been able to give up all practices without having satisfied your curiosity of ´going inside´?"

-- I did not have any "curiosity" or try to "go inside". Various experiences just happened by themselves. And also, I have not "given up all practices" or given up anything. Effort just falls away by itself. It all just dropped away without any effort. I did not have the intention or try to give up anything. The best way I can explain it is that it all just simply dissolved or dropped away because it became crystal clear that it (spiritual seeking and spiritual practices) was all totally unnecessary and also futile. It did not matter what had come before, such as whether or not I was "satisfied", mystical "experiences", "going inside", etc etc. None of that matters. It would not matter even if I had had no experiences. None of that is relevant. All that matters is this ever-present moment of awareness. No one is ahead of, or better than, anyone else. Everyone is equal, no matter how much or how little experience and knowledge they have. It always starts and ends right NOW.

That is why no guru or "master" has any superiority or any advantage, or is on top of it any more than anyone else. Because everyone (no matter who the hell they are) is always only alive and existing as awareness in the ever-fresh timeless moment that we call "now".

Therefore the "master", "guide", or "guru" thing is just a myth that is used to exploit people, to exploit spiritual seekers. There is nothing beyond the present moment.... no master, no guide, no guru. That is all an imaginary contrived fiction.

Reality is always only in the moment... and so everyone has the same opportunity, and no one has any advantage or "mastery" over anyone else.


Tao,
Yes you are right, Baba Ram Dass. The late 60's and early 70's all now seem to be "in a distant galaxy, far, far away......" or maybe that's because hopefully, I'm a bit more here, now.

Obed,
With reference to your thought: "I am NOW", and your concern for whether the thought may be an indicator of something:
My own experience suggests that there is such a thing as what could be termed, 'philosophic joy' - an exhalted mental state embracing the moment. This is something quite different from a dissociative state whereby we cease to be an observer of the observed. Where there is no me and it. Where there is a sense only of all and one. (struggling to find appropriate words here).
A similar dissociative state may be experienced while meditating, only at a more subtle and intense level owing to the closure of all the senses and the mental focus arrived at. We can then be left with the question: Was that an experience outside of my 'self' or was it closer to my 'self' or was it something else? The answer doesn't really matter as the experience itself is sublime.
From the way you write, I would guess that you don't need much in the way of intellectualisation, as you are already moving more and more into experiential states, whereby the acquisition of more information becomes more and more irrelevant.

TAo and poohbear thanks ever so much.Lots to ponder on

to tAo,

I would like to share an experience that happens for me in meditation often. This experience points in both the idrection you are saying, but also in another direction, which is the benefit of spiritual practice.
What happens is not supermystical of anything like that. Often as I start to meditate, I am aware of many thoughts. Often times there are moments when the thoughts clear, and for a short while, I feel like I have stepped out of a foggy place, and then I am lost again. I only know I was lost when these brief moments of clarity come. Then sometimes, the thoughts clear for a longer time, and then there is much more internal silence. I am just there, like floating in space. I am still aware of my body, but am much much more silent. This space feels conducive to appreciating or being aware of the ever fleeting moment. But when one is identified with thought and emotion, then awareness vansihes. How to stay present in the ever present moment? Is awareness still there when we are totally identified with an internal movie, thought, and emotion?

poohbear,

Thanks for your honest and sincere response,

You mentioned,

"The third eye, as it is commonly called, is not a symbol of something, nor is it a physical organ as such. It is simply a way of saying that we are seeing within. Just as we use eyes to see external forms, someone came up with the idea of calling inner seeing, a third eye. It is something that happens automatically as a by-product of holding the mind's focus for longish periods in the area above the eyes"

--I'm guessing, the 'third eye' is a term needed to communicate with others regarding the meditation process. However, when One paints a marking on their forehead, this is some kind of symbol. Again, I'm guessing.

Some questions. Why does the meditation process need to occur above the eyes?
What is wrong with it occurring below the eyes? The location around the eyes, seems like a symbolic process, generated from religious dogma or something else.

Is it possible that there is a 4th or 5th eye? Is it possible that One could focus their meditations from the crown (top) of Ones head?

Again, I reserve the right to be wrong. No big deal.

Poorbear, I do appreciate your response. You seem very sincere and honest.
Best wishes...Roger

Roger,

I'm sure you have heard of chakras..energy centers or vortexes located in the body at the navel, throat, crown, heart, asshole, etc. Yogis have long focused on these centers to gain siddhis (supernatural powers) visions, etc.

Tucson,

LOL...well no, never heard of charkas. I'm the guy with the limited vocabulary. Your comment on the other thread was fun to read....be careful you could become a Marked Soul, with 'nescient impersonal blind tortoise' tattooed on your ass.

haha......thanks again for the giggles and chuckles.

To Adam and Roger:


Adam,

It seems that maybe you are not understanding me correctly. Let me brak down those staments which I am referring to.

First you said: "Then sometimes, the thoughts clear for a longer time, and then there is much more internal silence. I am just there, like floating in space. I am still aware of my body, but am much much more silent."

-- Alright... thats all fine so far. It appears and I assume that you are talking specifically about when you are doing sitting meditation with your eyes closed.

Then you said: "This space feels conducive to appreciating or being aware of the "ever fleeting moment"

-- Thats alright too... but that "space" as you call it, and even doing sitting meditation in general, is not at all required to be acutely aware of the ever fleeting moment". At any moment, no matter what you are doing or what is happening, even without any meditation at all, it is quite effortless and instantaneous to be aware of the transitory nature of phenomena, or the ever-freshness/ever-fleetingness of the immediate moment. No meditation is necessary to be aware of this.

" But when one is identified with thought and emotion, then awareness vansihes."

-- No. Awareness never vanishes. Thoughts and emotions come and go like the momentary images on a TV screen, or like the sights and sound of birds chirping and flying outside your window, or like voices on a radio. But awareness is continuous. It is only your attention that is focused on the thoughts and emotions, or it is relaxed and simply obseving and listening while letting everything happen as it is spontaneously. Awareness is always there. All the thoughts emotions and sensory perceptions are occuring in your awareness. So your awareness never "vanishes".

"How to stay present in the ever present moment?"

-- You can not do otherwise. You are always in the ever-present moment. No matter what you are thinking or doing or feeling or remembering or observing or listening to. There is only the ever-present moment. You can either flow with it (so to speak), or you can ignore it by fixating upon thoughts or feelings or a memory. If you just let go and simply allow - just observe and listen and feel everything as it is happening live and spontaneously in the ever-fresh moment, then no effort is needed. Awareness takes no effort. Awareness is effortless. Simply abide as awareness, and fixate only upon those things and activities which for some reason you need to fixate upon momentarily. To abide in and as the ever-fresh moment is effortless. It does not require any sort of formal meditation as you are describing.

"Is awareness still there when we are totally identified with an internal movie, thought, and emotion?"

-- Awareness is always "there"... or actually, it is alwaye HERE. You ARE awareness. And so it is irrelevant as to what thoughts or emotions or sense perceptions and phenomena come and go.

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


Roger,

The the 'third eye' is not just a marking on the forehead. It is just a term used for a psychic center that is on another level superior to the ordinary visual perception.

You asked: "Why does the meditation process need to occur above the eyes?"

-- It doesn't need to occur "above the eyes". But you are perhaps referring specifically to the sant mat method of shabda yoga meditation, which employs simran (mantra repetition), (bhajan (hearing the sound current), and dhyan (seeing light at the third eye center). This type of meditation begins at the focus of the third eye center.

But you would already know all this very basic stuff about the Sant mat meditation if you would just simply go read one simple little book on the basic teachings of Sant mat and shabd yoga. But unfortunately, since you very stubbornly refuse to do that, you continue to end up having to ask all these unnecessary questions and having many unnecessary misunderstandings.

You asked; "What is wrong with it occurring below the eyes?"

-- Neither above nor below is necessary.

"The location around the eyes, seems like a symbolic process, generated from religious dogma or something else."

-- No... it simply has to do with that particular meditation (sant mat), of which the starting point is what is referred to as the Ajna chakra or the "third eye center".

You asked: "Is it possible that there is a 4th or 5th eye?"

-- Perhaps, but those are is just more unnecessary and artificial conceptual contructs.

You asked: "Is it possible that One could focus their meditations from the crown (top) of Ones head?"

-- Yes... but again, all such artificially contrived manipulation of the focus of attention onto various chakras (psychic centers) sounds mystical, but it is more or less unnecessary in both the short and the long run.


Roger,
One further clarification I might offer:
Meditating above the eyes is not confined only to the Sant Mat system. Before I came in contact with Sant Mat, I was extremely absorbed in Chinese thought. The two books I worked with were Tao Te Ching and I Ching. I purposely isolated myself in nature when I could, and sought deeper understanding of the natural elements used to convey the ideas of the I Ching. When sitting quietly for long periods in nature, my attention always gathered above the eyes. Later I took up Hatha Yoga (the physical postures) and at the end of any session when the teacher kept us in the relaxation posture - again the attention had its own tendency to gather above the eyes. It seems to be the mind's natural place of rest and focus.
Some meditation systems teach by concentration on an external object. Some teach concentrating at the heart or solar plexus, but these are also external from the mind. So hence, because we use the mind to meditate, I am more comfortable with meditating at its natural place of rest above the eyes.
Tao's comment is right - it may be time to read a book of some sort. You may even find all of this on a website somewhere.

tAo,

Thanks for your comments. I understand more what you mean now. For me, sitting meditation is a good way to find some space so I have a reference point throughout the rest of the day. When I begin to become stressed out, unhinged, or obsessively focused on some painful thought, which happens, I find that the space created from sitting meditation often creates a sort of halo of energy, if you will, that allows me to tap into that space throughout the day by becoming still. For me, the sitting meditation is truly my life raft, allowing me to find some rest amidst my nesurotic mind. If I have a goal in meditation, it is simply to maintain more contact with that space so that that space becomes is my natural place of resting. It sounds to me like we're on basically the same page, except for the fact that I want to do sitting meditation while you see no need.

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