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April 07, 2008

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Brian, how many people would need to "show you the money" before you would be satisfied that the deal is credible?

And even more pertinent, how much wealth would they need to be shown to have before you are convinced?

Would even an entire room full of satsangi "millionaires" impress you?

Somehow I doubt it.

Your investment apparently didn't pay off for you, and that is at the very basis of all your complaints.

Other satsangis' success isn't going to make you wealthy, so what difference would disclosure make for you, really?

Mysti,
let me give you my answer to your quetion.

"how many people would need to "show you the money" before you would be satisfied that the deal is credible?"

How about ONE?

Let me find just ONE person who I can have an honest conversation with - and I personally will be impressed even with that.

I have a friend who is a devoted followed of RS. I ask and and he tells me. He says he has had no experience to write home about.

I have challenged him to bring to me JUST ONE PERSON who I can have an honest conversation with and who will not hide behind secrecy. He took me to one person who openly admitted that he knew all the theory but had no experience - he was a satsang speaker.

Even if you get some experience - so what? I had experience. I was initiated by Thakar in 1980 and then Darshan in 1981. And then by Charan in late 1982. If I meditate even now - I see light and I have withdrawal.

So what? It doesn't mean jack s**t.

It has nothing to do with true spiritual wealth which is the opposite in many ways.

See - if I get some mystical experience - guess what happens? I want more. I get greedy.

Why? because that is the nature of the mind.

So now - even on a spiritual path I have to battle with the same greed.

Nothing changes. First I was attracted to material wealth and then on the spiritual path I am attracted to spiritual experiences. The greed is the same.

The remedy is the same. Meditate - but leave the results to the master. So now the disciple does this - just like Adam claimed to do in another discussion we were having.

How do you leave the results to the master. It is nothing more than a delusion of the mind. It sounds good. And we all want to appear to be good.

I spoke to someone about my state. The end of all seeking. A few days later - he was claiming the same.

He heard me and it sounded good. So he convinced himself that he has also arrived at the same place.

Remember the mind is a genius at self-delusion.

The spiritual investment is never going to payoff.

In a sense it is not meant to. Enlightenment means you are dead - there is no you - so who is going to collect the reward or the prize money?

Osho:

>>Remember the mind is a genius at self-delusion.

Yes.

>>The spiritual investment is never going to payoff.

>>In a sense it is not meant to. Enlightenment means you are dead - there is no you - so who is going to collect the reward or the prize money?

If there is no "you", isn't that the biggest payoff of all?

"Thus the investment of meditation, vegetarianism, and such isn't guaranteed to show a payoff until a maximum of three additional reincarnations have been lived."

--This is the guru's escape clause. Sant Mat seekers please read the fine print before signing.

Three more lifetimes? What the hell does that mean? Think about it. It means nothing. The guru's promise means nothing. You're on your own, kid.

We need a "Consumer Reports" that rates Gurus for the spiritual consumer. Who offers the best deal? Who really pays off?

Actually, there is/was a guy named something like Sarno, Sarlo or something like that who did guru and spiritual path reviews with a "star" rating system. It was a pretty impressive compendium of data but his conclusions were, of course, his own and somewhat tongue-in-cheek at times. I haven't looked for his site in years. It may still be up.

Here it is! Sarlo's Guru Rating Service:

http://www.globalserve.net/~sarlo/Ratings.htm

> We need a "Consumer Reports" that rates
> Gurus for the spiritual consumer. Who
> offers the best deal? Who really pays off?

What exactly is it that we want, and why? For what, and for who?

No one else will (or can) get to the bottom of that for us. So suppose I want to see radiant visions. Yeah, maybe some Master can deliver the goods at a better rate than others. But that's such a trivial matter, when compared to the really big question: why am I looking for radiant visions? Why not see what's already right in front of me?

Stuart
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

Quite right, Osho Robbins.

Even I have had spiritual experience of seeing the light.

That is not the end of the world. NOr is it the proof and purpose of Gurudom.

I am as ignornat as ever although the light and sound gave a big ego boost.

peace and blessings. enlightenment? who knows?

Osho,
you write:

"See - if I get some mystical experience - guess what happens? I want more. I get greedy."

Wanting more of a nice experience is not greed. Greed is wanting to hoard a presumably limited resource for oneself. Light and sound is not a limited resource. And desiring more is only an indication that you enjoyed the experience.

Mysti, it isn't that I'd be convinced by testimonials from initiates. What I'm after is an acknowledgment that the Sant Mat "deal" is either about (1) loving or (2) investing.

It's difficult to have it both ways. Again, like a marriage. Is it "for better or worse" or is it an exchange relationship? Let's be honest.

Initiates of a guru like to say it's all about love. Well, fine. Then don't talk about mystical experiences, the gifts of the guru, what is gained by being in his physical or spiritual presence.

Just talk about love. Nothing else. Anything else, in my opinion, is investing. Investing in meditation and other practices because those causes are supposed to produce certain effects.

Sant Mat promises "do this, and that will happen." Once we're in the realm of this and that, it's reasonable to ask: if this is done, does that happen?

With love, nothing is reasonable. I'm fine with that. Go crazy. Go wild. Leap into the arms of the beloved and have at it -- secretly.

What has come to bother me is the attempt to have it both ways. If the deal is to gain mystical experiences in exchange for doing certain practices, then let's get evidence (even subjective) of how "investors" are doing.

But if the deal is simply to love another person, there's no need to investigate any claims. Love is love. Concomitantly, though, there's also no need to make any claims.

So my attitude to Sant Mat and other religions is: show me the money, so to speak , if you make specific claims that believers will get certain benefits in exchange for investing in the belief system.

If no claims are made, if all that's proffered is love, love, and more love -- great. Then it's a religion of love, not of any experiences other than love.

Brian,

>>>Just talk about love. Nothing else. Anything else, in my opinion, is investing. Investing in meditation and other practices because those causes are supposed to produce certain effects.

Investing in meditation is itself an act of love.

In the beginning, we have a boatload of expectations of getting something in return for our act of love.

This is because we only know how to love with conditions. If the conditions are met, we'll continue to love, but if our expectations are thwarted, we begin to withdraw our love.

However, meditation itself also teaches us gradually the meaning of unconditional love. Through our conditional act of love, we slowly grow into the unconditional.

Where in all this are those experiences of which you speak? Perhaps they lie on the other side of your expectations. Your expectations may be the barrier to reaping the rewards of your investment.

Misty, about what kind of love do you speak?
The love from diciple for master or an overall Love?
What about that 0nly 10% can go back to their original home,the rest has to stay in transmigration again and again.
What actual IS Love?
One can feel a sort of love and Maharaji(Charan Singh) talked a lot of it in an very inspirational way,I think he lived it,BUT the santmat doctrine,is that LOVE?
An older satsangiver in Dera said that when you doubd the master ,you have to be born again,that is shocking that that sort of things is being said in an official satsang.
The Love that we feel in our heart can grow by mediation maybe,I think so,but we don't know if it is a gift,or that it is our own natural state what one come to feel by going within ones own self..

Mysti, this is an interesting conversation. I'll continue it...

You say that love for the guru, or god, should be unconditional, with no expectations. Meaning, the lover doesn't expect to get anything from the "deal."

That's beautiful. But what makes this different from any other form of unconditional love? (assuming such pure love is possible)

I love my wife. I love my daughter. I love my granddaughter. I love working on land use issues for our neighborhood. I love blogging.

I get satisfaction from each of these loves, but I don't expect that I'll gain such and such from them. So isn't this the same as loving god or the guru without expectations?

What is gained by loving someone half a world away who you will never see privately in person, likely? Or loving someone imaginary (god) who is just an idea? Isn't it better to love someone or something real?

Now, many satsangis will say: "The guru is god and saves souls." OK. This is more honest. This gets us into the investing side of the relationship. Do something for the guru, and the guru will do something for you. Save your soul.

Almost all satsangis see the guru-disciple relationship in this fashion, which is why I call it "investing." Christians too: "Jesus saves."

Maybe you really do have zero expectations. When you die, you expect that nothing will happen. The guru won't meet you and take you to god; you'll just be dead forever. But while alive you enjoyed the feeling of loving the guru.

That's great. But again, that feeling is no different from the selfless love almost everyone has for people and things. When expectations and experiences are taken out of religion or spirituality, we're left with everyday human experience.

What confuses me is that you've spoken of the "gifts" of the guru, and how you don't want to reveal them. Not just the gift of love, but the gift of certain experiences. So I take this to mean that your relationship with the guru is indeed founded on exchanges: you've gotten gifts from him, and you've given devotion to him.

Am I wrong? Or is the only thing you care about the love you feel, desiring nothing in return? If this is the case, then why the reluctance to talk about the gifts, since they're meaningless and have nothing to do with your relationship?

Brian,

Firstly, I think more is read into my words than what I state.

Everyone is entitled to read whatever they wish, but it does present challenges to a satisfying dialogue.

>>>You say that love for the guru, or god, should be unconditional, with no expectations.

I hadn't mentioned God or the guru, though I understand how you reached this conclusion.

In my mind, love is putting the self or ego needs aside. Love is when the self is not.

To the extent that meditation is practicing putting the self aside, I consider it an act of love, whether there is love in the heart for god/guru or not.

>>>But what makes this different from any other form of unconditional love? (assuming such pure love is possible)

That's a good question.

Personally, I think there is no difference between one form of unconditional love and another, provided it is, indeed, unconditional.

>>>I get satisfaction from each of these loves, but I don't expect that I'll gain such and such from them. So isn't this the same as loving god or the guru without expectations?

I don't know. You get satisfaction from each of those loves. Do you get satisfaction from loving god?

>>>What is gained by loving someone half a world away who you will never see privately in person, likely? Or loving someone imaginary (god) who is just an idea? Isn't it better to love someone or something real?

Well, on the one hand you said that you don't expect to gain anything from your personal loves, but on the other hand you ask what is to be gained by loving someone far away or even imaginary.

>>>What confuses me is that you've spoken of the "gifts" of the guru, and how you don't want to reveal them. Not just the gift of love, but the gift of certain experiences. So I take this to mean that your relationship with the guru is indeed founded on exchanges: you've gotten gifts from him, and you've given devotion to him.

No, I haven't spoken of myself in this context. What I have done is draw a parallel between special gifts from a loved one in real life and what a devotee may feel about their own inner experiences.

>>Am I wrong? Or is the only thing you care about the love you feel, desiring nothing in return? If this is the case, then why the reluctance to talk about the gifts, since they're meaningless and have nothing to do with your relationship?

Again, I wasn't talking about myself in a guru relationship, only sharing my own understanding of the nature of love in general and what I have gleaned from personal experiences in everyday love relationships.

Brian, I don't see how any gifts of love can ever be considered meaningless, and to tell you the truth, I don't quite follow your line of reasoning.

And this has really been more about you than about me.

It is you have have invested so much in the guru relationship, not me. It is you who is feeling shortchanged or even betrayed.

I can relate to your situation from an everyday human perspective, as one who understands what it means to invest so deeply in something and feels perhaps as you do now. That is the basis of my sharing.

Mysti, thanks for the clarification. Every conversation between two people is about both individuals. I respect your contention that I may be talking more about myself than you.

However, often we don't know ourselves, so I've found I'm not always justified in my denials: "That isn't me!" Sometimes it is; I just haven't realized it.

My assumption that you were speaking of a guru or god came from your reluctance to share details of your spiritual experiences, as this would be a betrayal of an intimate trust or relationship.

I've never heard anyone speak in this fashion of nature, say, or a feeling of oneness with the universe. It takes a personal relationship for one to feel that it is too intimate to disclose to others.

I doubt that the Mojave Desert cares if someone says, "The moonrise was so beautiful over the butte; I felt enraptured."

As you can tell, I tilt toward an impersonal view of the ultimate. It seems to me that it's my ego and sense of personal identity that needs to go before I can sense universality.

So I admit to a bias away from the personal. When someone speaks of a personalized divinity, as you seem to be, I'm curious about the basis for this belief. That's been my main interest in conversing with you.

Sita:

>>Misty, about what kind of love do you speak?
The love from diciple for master or an overall Love?

Love, period.

>>What about that 0nly 10% can go back to their original home,the rest has to stay in transmigration again and again.

I don't know about that, but I can tell you that I have spoken to many people who would love nothing more than to live forever on this material plane. Are you saying that they shouldn't have their wishes?

>>What actual IS Love?

Excellent question, and one which I have persued all my life.

Brian,

Thank you for your own magnanimous clarification.

I am as guilty as anyone of projecting my own assumptions onto the mind of others, and I fail invariably to be clear in the intent and meaning of my own communications.

It has been my own experience that the bulk of online interchange in these type of discussions involves clarifying and refining what one is trying to express.

The immediacy and near intimacy of this form of communication belies and conceals the differences which may otherwise easily present themselves in face to face dialogue.

Having said that, I think we have definitely gained ground in understanding where each of us is coming from. I do, however, still feel at a disadvantage in a public exchange, and one in which I am your guest.

>>As you can tell, I tilt toward an impersonal view of the ultimate. It seems to me that it's my ego and sense of personal identity that needs to go before I can sense universality.

Well, they say there is only room for one in the lane of love.

>>So I admit to a bias away from the personal. When someone speaks of a personalized divinity, as you seem to be, I'm curious about the basis for this belief.

The personalized divinity is a focal point or "I" of the impersonal universality. As long as we're an "I", we operate from self and ego, we can only practically relate to another "I".

In the journey from conditional to unconditional love, our focal "I" gradually shifts from self to not-self through the act of love. If that not-self is the "I" of the personal divinity, then, well, the drop merges into the ocean, to use a favorite analogy, and to cut a long story short.

That's nothing new to you, and plenty have said the same thing in a much better way, but I did want to touch on it.

This issue between Brian and Mysti and vice-versa has become a bit blurred and complicated, so to make any comment, I will have to take each of the posts one at a time. First, Brian's article.

I must agree with Brian on all points.

I agree that if, for Mysti, love is the whole of Sant Mat, then why even talk about meditation or make promises or claims for mystical attainment. Its either solely about guru bhakti (love), or else its about the science of 'do the meditation and achieve the results' (investment). Not both. But people like Mysti want to hide behind love and then use that as an excuse for their investment. That's not really honest. If you are going to say 'love is the path', thats ok, but then don't use that as way to evade discussing the meditation and its supposed and promised results.

Brian says that Mysti wrote:
"The inner personal experience of meditation is regarded by many satsangis as a very personal, private, and precious gift which has relevance only to oneself. The experience is a special gift from the inner master..." ...... "I would feel that I am betraying something of that bond of love if I were to share their special "gifts" without the express permission of my beloved. So, too, with those inner experiences."

-- This opinion of Mysti's is entirely predicated upon the presumption and belief that all experiences in meditation are somehow "special gifts" from the so-called "master". But again, there is no concrete evidence that this is so, or that any such master has anything to do with one's meditation experiences. Nor does it require that such experiences be kept secret and not revealed. But I happen to feel very strongly that this is NOT the real reason. I suspect that the real reason is that for most satsangis there are little or no experiences, and people like Mysti are loathe to admit that. So thats why they grab for the "love for the guru" card, in order to avoid admitting the honest truth.

As Brian said: "Loving is one thing, investing another." And Brian also points out: "Sant Mat disciples ... are extremely reluctant to admit that they're even involved in a metaphysical relationship with their master. They'll say, "I can't talk about it; it's too personal."

So how DO these folks realy know that they get gifts of mystical experiences that they know are coming from the guru, when they refuse to say what those experiences are or even admit that they have any? Again, just loving the guru is one thing, but supposed or claimed mystical experiences and promises thereof, are quite anther thing. Moreover, I doubt that these people really have any such real love for someone - a guru - who they have extremely little or no personal contact with, and who surey doesn't know them from Jack Daniels. This so-called "love" is simply wishful fantasy and nonsense.

Brian asks: "What's wrong with sharing the general nature of your spiritual relationship?" -- Answer: They cannot because these people have no "spiritual relationship" period. It's all in their minds.

Brian also says: "My suspicion is that what's wrong is that the gifts aren't as clear cut or demonstrable as the Sant Mat teachings promise. This makes Sant Mat more of an exercise in investing, and less an exercise in loving." -- I quite agree with Brian.

Sant Mat does promise certain experiences. And that is not love. That is investing. And it IS an exchange relationship. We know what these satsangi believers are giving, but the real queastion is what are these peop le getting back, if anything? I don't thinbk they are getting anything back. I think they are naively deluding themselves, and not admitting that the guru is taking or receiving all their devotion, their service, and their money... and giving them NOTHING back. Why do I say that? Because they have nothing to show for it. Nada. No progress, no wisdom, no spiritual realizationn, no transcendent bliss, no Sach Khand, and not even any apparent experiences. Nothing to show at all. Nothing to prove that their investment of either meditation, or love, has given them anything, much less the reaching of the promised goal.

And then, to make matters even worse, as Brian has also pointed out: "it's said that this promise isn't always fulfilled in one's lifetime. Thus the investment of meditation, vegetarianism, and such isn't guaranteed to show a payoff until a maximum of three additional reincarnations have been lived." Well that's a damn outrageous snake-oil scam if I hever heard one. In other words, you'll have to wait a couple of life-times to find out if your investment in RS has really paid off. Only the worst of fools would fall for that kind of vacuous bullshit.

But then, the meditation practice is billed as a "science." You do certain things, and certain results happen. But do they? So far, after well over a century there have been no proven results reported to speak of. So again, it all falls under the catehory of mere belief and blind faith, regardless of "love".

And so it is true that the way Sant Mat is structured, it does sound like there's something a little shady going on there.

If satsangi initiates had anything to show for their investment, then disclosure would no be a problewm. If mystical wealth really is actually being accumulated, then let's see it.

As Brian rightly said: "Love doesn't have anything to do with credibility. It stands by itself. Promised spiritual experiences, though, either are forthcoming or they're not."

And so I too say: "Show me the money. Then I'll know if the deal is credible." And don;t give me that lame-ass "love" bullshit. Santmat/RS is all a path of MEDITATION, not "love". This "love" jive is just some romantic icing they put on the cake to make it more palatable and to keep the followers following along blindly and doing seva.

But some of us are wise to all of that.


Mysti said:

"Investing in meditation is itself an act of love."

-- Huh? Love for what? For the master? Meditating has nothing to do with loving someone. It is simply meditation. Or maybe you mean that you "love" doing meditation. I can accept that more easily than I can accept the idea that doing meditation is somehow loving the master. Thats just childish nonsense and a self-assuring fantasy. And so what exactly is it that you "love", when you say that "meditation is itself an act of love"?

"we have a boatload of expectations of getting something in return for our act of love."

-- What specifically is this "act of love" that you are referring to? Santmat does not say "only just LOVE the master" and thats all. Thats what Meher Baba says, but not what Santmat says. Santmat simply says "DO THE MEDITATION". There is no "love" involved. Its all a matter of doing one's daily meditation. Charan Singh must have said it a million times. He did NOT say "just love the master". He said: "just DO your meditation". Period. So all this "love" stuff that you tout is nothing more than mere "romanticising the esoteric", as Mircea Eliade so aptly called it.

"This is because we only know how to love with conditions. If the conditions are met, we'll continue to love, but if our expectations are thwarted, we begin to withdraw our love."

-- Wrong. These so-called "expectations" are all created initially by the Santmat/RS dogma, not by the believers that believe it. There was no "love" involved.

"However, meditation itself also teaches us gradually the meaning of unconditional love."

-- How is that? Where is the evidence of that? Please show me where these meditating satsangis now have more "unconditional love". On the contrary, satsangis show no such evidence of "unconditional love". It's quite the opposite in fact.

[To Brian]: "Where in all this are those experiences of which you speak? Perhaps they lie on the other side of your expectations. Your expectations may be the barrier to reaping the rewards of your investment."

-- Not "expectstions" Mysti, but rather promises of results. Your statement belies your underlying avoidance of this fact. Its just more typically evasive RS satsangi hypocrisy and chameleon-like double-talk. Sorry, but I don't buy it.


Even if one were to assume that it may take 3 to 4 lifetimes to experience the Sant Mat claims to the inner realms, one would think that a certain percentage of satsangis living today would be in their 3rd or 4th lifetime and having "inner experiences". But, as previously mentioned, we just aren't seeing any evidence for this in RS.

My suspicion is that "very few" experience any sort of metaphysical trasport in RS. And, for those that do, these experiences are most likely the result of a person's genetic cerebral wiring versus any sort of grace from a guru.

Tao:

>>>-- Huh? Love for what? For the master? Meditating has nothing to do with loving someone. It is simply meditation. Or maybe you mean that you "love" doing meditation.

This is what I wrote in a previous post:

"To the extent that meditation is practicing putting the self aside, I consider it an act of love, whether there is love in the heart for god/guru or not."

So no, I wasn't referring specifically to loving someone nor to loving the meditation.

>>>And so what exactly is it that you "love", when you say that "meditation is itself an act of love"?

See above.

>>>Santmat simply says "DO THE MEDITATION". There is no "love" involved.

Well, I could have it completely wrong, but I thought that one of the main reasons for meditation was to help diminish the ego and make us more receptive to love, universal love, divine love, call it what you will.

>>>How is that? Where is the evidence of that? Please show me where these meditating satsangis now have more "unconditional love". On the contrary, satsangis show no such evidence of "unconditional love". It's quite the opposite in fact.

I'm sorry that this has been your own experience. In that case, I can well understand your cynical perspective.

>>>Its just more typically evasive RS satsangi hypocrisy and chameleon-like double-talk. Sorry, but I don't buy it.

That's OK, I wasn't selling, only sharing my own perspective, as you are yours.

tAo:

>>>Why do I say that? Because they have nothing to show for it. Nada. No progress, no wisdom, no spiritual realizationn, no transcendent bliss, no Sach Khand, and not even any apparent experiences. Nothing to show at all. Nothing to prove that their investment of either meditation, or love, has given them anything, much less the reaching of the promised goal.

It's sometimes hard to know if you're serious or you are just joking around, but this psragraph of yours had me laughing out loud. It is a real classic. No wonder you have a following here.

Mysti said:

"In my mind, love is putting the self or ego needs aside. Love is when the self is not."

-- You say "Love is when the self is not"?
Then who is doing the loving? This is just more of your double-talk. You are talking about selflessness, not love. To "love" necessarily requires one who loves, and the object of that love.

"To the extent that meditation is practicing putting the self aside"

-- Fyi, Santmat/RS does not primarily teach "putting the self aside". Not even secondarily. Its entire focus and teaching is upon the practice of meditation on the shabda.

"I consider it an act of love, whether there is love in the heart for god/guru or not."

-- Thats just the spin that you out on it.

"Do you get satisfaction from loving god?"

-- What is "loving god"? God is merely an idea that you have.

Brian said: "What is gained by loving someone half a world away who you will never see privately in person, likely? Or loving someone imaginary (god) who is just an idea?"

Mysti responded: "you ask what is to be gained by loving someone far away or even imaginary."

-- So yes, what is gained? You did NOT answer the question. You are evading the issue again. And this is typical of satsangis who are in denial.

"What I have done is draw a parallel between special gifts from a loved one in real life and what a devotee may feel about their own inner experiences."

-- You are saying that inner experiences are "gifts". But you have indicated no such inner experiences to show for this. First show some real experiences, and only then can it be determined whether or not they are actually "gifts" from elsewhere.

"Again, I wasn't talking about myself in a guru relationship"

-- Then what are you trying to say? You imply that inner experiences are presumably gifts from the guru. You are not being clear and direct.

"only sharing ... what I have gleaned from personal experiences in everyday love relationships."

-- What does that have to do with some satsangi's supposed love for a guru who they do not know at all, and really have no personal contact with whatsoever, and who doesn't give a fig about them.

"I don't see how any gifts of love can ever be considered meaningless"

-- What "gifts of love"? What gifts of love are you referring to? You are far too vague. Just to say "gifts of love" is more or less meaningless if you cannot be specific.

"And this has really been more about you (Brian) than about me."

-- Not at all. It's all about YOUR claims that Santmat is a path of love rather than a science of meditation, and that inner experiences are gifts from the master.

"It is you have have invested so much in the guru relationship, not me."

-- If that's true, then please tell your story, about your lesser investment, and your guru relationship, whatever it is or isn't.

=========


"I am as guilty as anyone of projecting my own assumptions onto the mind of others, and I fail invariably to be clear in the intent and meaning of my own communications."

-- You can say that again.

"Well, they say there is only room for one in the lane of love."

-- Who cares what "they" say. What do you say?

"As long as we're an "I", we operate from self and ego, we can only practically relate to another "I"."

-- Why do you say "we're an I"? How do you know that? What is this "I" that you assume?

"In the journey from conditional to unconditional love, our focal "I" gradually shifts from self to not-self through the act of love."

-- Is "love" really an act? And what is "not-self"? These are merely ideas that you have and project.

"If that not-self is the "I" of the personal divinity, then, well, the drop merges into the ocean"

-- This is nothing more than fancy mystical mumbo-jumbo. We've already moved way beyond that kind of jive.

The questions still remain: What proof do you have that some supposed inner experiences are actually gifts of the guru, and how can you say that RS is a path of love when in fact the teachings clearly say that it is primarily a path of meditation?


And now I feel I have truly arrived, having received a wonderfully warm and colorful dressing down by the illustrious tAo.

You have made my day. :)

Adam wrote:
> Wanting more of a nice experience is not
> greed. Greed is wanting to hoard a
> presumably limited resource for oneself.

Interesting distinction, which I hadn't considered before. If I hoard diamonds, I'm leaving less for the rest of the world. If I hoard good feelings or dogmatic ideas, there are still plenty left to go around!

Still: if our purpose is to find ways to remove suffering, the distinction isn't very important. If I'm attached to material things, I suffer, because all things eventually disappear. If I'm attached to good feelings, nice situations, beautiful words and ideas... you don't have to call it "greed," but whatever you call it, it's still a cause of suffering.

The feelings, experiences, and ideas that are fresh at the moment will NEVER remain fresh if you cling to them day after day after day. Holding onto experiences and dogmas -- even though these aren't limited resources -- results in suffering every bit as much as holding onto material things.

Stuart
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

Brian said...
> that feeling is no different from the
> selfless love almost everyone has for
> people and things. When expectations and
> experiences are taken out of religion or
> spirituality, we're left with everyday
> human experience.

Precisely so. When you love your wife or daughter, or any being you relate to, without wanting something "for me"... I find nothing at all lacking. I find no reason to judge that as inferior to loving god or guru or whatever.

When acting out of love (i.e., without I/my/me), then ordinary, everyday life is in no way inferior to religion and spirituality.

Stuart
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

Mysti said:

"To the extent that meditation is practicing putting the self aside, I consider it an act of love, whether there is love in the heart for god/guru or not. ... So no, I wasn't referring specifically to loving someone nor to loving the meditation."

-- Then what ARE you referring to? Selflessness? How does that relate to love of guru, guru-bhakti? You are still beating around the bush.

"Well, I could have it completely wrong, but I thought that one of the main reasons for meditation was to help diminish the ego and make us more receptive to love, universal love, divine love, call it what you will."

-- That is not the stated goal of meditation in the RS teaching. The goal as defined by RS is to withdraw the attention fromm the body and to cross over the lower planes of mind to reach the imperishable realm of sach khand and thus iberation from the cycle of birth and death. There was and is no stated goal of: "to help diminish the ego and make us more receptive to love, universal love, divine love". Go read the books.

tAo said: "satsangis show no such evidence of "unconditional love". It's quite the opposite in fact."

Mysti responded: "I'm sorry that this has been your own experience. In that case, I can well understand your cynical perspective."

-- It's not just my own personal experience of hundreds of satsangis. It's an obvious fact to many others besides myself.

tAo said: "just more typically evasive RS satsangi hypocrisy and chameleon-like double-talk. Sorry, but I don't buy it."

Mysti responded: That's OK, I wasn't selling, only sharing my own perspective, as you are yours.

-- You are indeed "selling", because you are saying and claiming that satsangis have gained unconditional love from following and practicing the meditation and the path.

tAo said: "Why do I say that? Because they have nothing to show for it. Nada. No progress, no wisdom, no spiritual realizationn, no transcendent bliss, no Sach Khand, and not even any apparent experiences. Nothing to show at all ... much less the reaching of the promised goal."

Mysti responded: "It's sometimes hard to know if you're serious or you are just joking around, but this psragraph of yours had me laughing out loud. It is a real classic. No wonder you have a following here."

-- Now you are ridiculing me. Therefore all that you have said is now reduced to insincere bullshit. Brian was honest and sincere and so have I been as well. You are obviously playing games, and because you are evasive and have nothing to back up your claims. So now you can only resort to cheap ridicule. But in doing so, you've lost your credibility. And btw, I have no "following" here. In fact, its quite the opposite. So... so much for your BS. Its been a waste of my time. You are not worth the effort.

There are others here who are far more sincere and honest and open and sober than you are. So maybe you should take a hint from them.


tAo:

>>>"I am as guilty as anyone of projecting my own assumptions onto the mind of others, and I fail invariably to be clear in the intent and meaning of my own communications."

>>>-- You can say that again.

Don't tempt me...

tAo, I'm not here to satisfy your own particular expectation of clarity and openness in what I say here. This is, after all, the world wibe web, so I try to say what I do with a measure of discretion.

I posted initially in response to a quote from Brian, one that I felt I needed to clarify and elaborate. In general practice, I try to avoid posting here, especially in view of the inevitable public humiliation (or attempt thereof) by yourself.

It seems to please you to force whatever a satsangi says into a pre-conceived mould, what to say of ridiculing and belittling practically every word they say. If there is strength in your incisiveness and directness, it is weakened through these unnecessary tactics.

And know that I am not here to prove, verify or otherwise substantiate any claim whatsoever made by or on behalf of any spiritual group or person.

I offer my personal thoughts and observations only, and these are not on trial. You are most welcome to debate and discuss what you please, but know that I, like yourself, am perfectly free to be as evasive as I please.

tAo:

>>>-- Now you are ridiculing me. Therefore all that you have said is now reduced to insincere bullshit. Brian was honest and sincere and so have I been as well. You are obviously playing games, and because you are evasive and have nothing to back up your claims. So now you can only resort to cheap ridicule. But in doing so, you've lost your credibility. And btw, I have no "following" here. In fact, its quite the opposite. So... so much for your BS. Its been a waste of my time. You are not worth the effort.

>>>There are others here who are far more sincere and honest and open and sober than you are. So maybe you should take a hint from them.

Actually, I wasn't trying to ridicule you, I was trying to share my genuine mirth of the moment when you did really bring a smile to my face. Sorry it had the opposite effect.

Yes, I, too, find Brian to be honest and sincere in what he says.

It does hurt that you think I am playing games, because despite my difficulty in conveying what I mean within the limitations of this medium, I do endeavor to be sincere in any serious topic that I discuss. Yes, I am guilty of evading your questions, but not with the intent of playing games.

>>>There are others here who are far more sincere and honest and open and sober than you are. So maybe you should take a hint from them.

I do enjoy reading many of the posts here, and I do respect the sincerity and openness which is often evident.

We all have things to learn from one another, I do agree. I will definitely give your advice some consideration, to "take a hint" from the others here. From that point of view, your efforts have not been wasted.


Wow,
I have many, many comments today. First to Stuart, point taken--attachment period leads to suffering. But I personally have been trying to find ways of working with my self that don't totally negate the mind's tendencies. Telling my mind, "don't be too attached!" often doesn't really do the trick, so finding a balance between letting my mind be "human" and gently reminding it that attachment leads to pain somehow feels a little more gentle...in other words the question interests me of how the truth of your statement flows into action.

to Mysti, I see you have been officially hazed by tAo, and you took it in the right spirit. tAo, I don't think she was ridiculing you at all. tAo, you have to know that I respect your intelligence, experience, and wisdom immensely, but you have to know that on a basic human level it feels like shit to be "shredded." Mysti took it very well.

Finally, and most interestingly, about this blog thread, which is very interesting, about investing vs. love. This goes to the very heart of my doubts about the non-dualist ideas of have encountered here, so Tuscon and tAo, read the following, and bring it on!

My story sort of goes like this: all is one, but the illusion of duality makes us feel separate. Now there seems to be two paths often espoused here that seem to be at odds. There is the non-dualist path that says simply, all is consciousness, and any form of seeking or meditation practices, etc., etc., only serve to reinforce the ego. There is nothing that needs to be done. Then there is another idea, that, all is already one, but that this consciousness of oneness is not already made manifest, so there is a conceptual distinction made between the unmanifested and the manifested. Eckhart Tolle writes in his recent book "New Earth" that the goal of human life is to bring the unmanifested into the manifested. OSHO (not Mr. Robbins, but Rajneesh) talks about growing the seed of consciousness, and in sant mat, the idea is that the the ghee is already in the milk, but the milk must undergo a process for the ghee to surface. The question that arises, then, is, is some process necessary for consciousness to "know itself?" If the answer is yes, then I don't see much difference between love and investment. Here's why. If the seed id inside us and we wish to grow it, the very reward from the time spent in meditation is our own SOUL GROWTH. There may be lights and sounds, etc., but these are phenomena associated with the growth process, and not an indication that the guru or meditation has worked or not worked. Time and space may be an illusion, but perhaps consciousness may unfold itself within the illusion, and perhaps some apparent process may happen. Investment and love for the guru from this point of view is none other than investment in one's own soul growth. There is no failure. This idea that thirty years or meditation should have brought on a package of results...how de we know? Just because 30 years may be half a lifetime doesn't mean it's a long time, it only seems long from our relative point of view.

So to be clear and summarize,
might there not be some process involved in the unfolding of consciousness, and that this process is love and investment at once?

Mysti,

"not here to satisfy ... expectation of clarity and openness"? "try to say what I do with a measure of discretion"? -- Is that so?

"In general practice, I try to avoid posting here, especially in view of the inevitable public humiliation (or attempt thereof) by yourself." -- I made no attempt to humiliate you. You are responsible for your own words. I simply pointed out your errors in reasoning, as Brian did also. If you can't support your claims with fact, then you shoudn't be making them.

"It seems to please you to force whatever a satsangi says into a pre-conceived mould" -- You put yourself into a mold, not I. You are responsible for what you say, not I.

"what to say of ridiculing and belittling practically every word they say." -- You are clearly in denial in regards to the assumptions you have made.

"If there is strength in your incisiveness and directness, it is weakened through these unnecessary tactics." -- There were no such "tactics". You are again trying to evade and skirt around the issues, and instead now make me the issue, when in fact I was never the issue at all.

"And know that I am not here to prove, verify or otherwise substantiate any claim whatsoever made by or on behalf of any spiritual group or person." -- But YOU made the claims, not any groups or other persons.

"I offer my personal thoughts and observations only, and these are not on trial." -- Sorry but anything you say here is up for question or debate.

"know that I .... am perfectly free to be as evasive as I please." -- That's quite obvious.

"Actually, I wasn't trying to ridicule you, I was trying to share my genuine mirth of the moment when you did really bring a smile to my face. Sorry it had the opposite effect." -- Unfortunately that's how it came across.

"I do endeavor to be sincere in any serious topic that I discuss. Yes, I am guilty of evading your questions, but not with the intent of playing games." -- Then what WAS your intent?

In conclusion... You have not really answered any of my questions to speak of, and yet you now falsely accuse me of "belittling" people. So I have to wonder what your agenda really is. However, this all started with you and Brian, and so that's where it can return to. I just don't care to discuss it with you any further. I have already made my point.


Adam,

>>>So to be clear and summarize,
might there not be some process involved in the unfolding of consciousness, and that this process is love and investment at once?

Yes, this is basically what I was trying to say in my own fumbling and obtruse way. Thank you for making it clearer.

And thank you, also, for your more personal words of encouragement. They are a note of comfort at a time when I am keenly aware of my all-too-human vulnerabilities.

Adam,

"might there not be some process involved in the unfolding of consciousness"

Great question........

Please ask one or more (30 plus year) Sant mat inititates if they have a detailed description of that process.

Please copy and paste, their reply within this Blog. Thirty years is small compared to billions or trillions of years.

An honest and sincere response would be a treasure.

Adam wrote:

"There is the non-dualist path that says simply, all is consciousness, and any form of seeking or meditation practices, etc., etc., only serve to reinforce the ego."

--Actually, the ego can't be reinforced because it doesn't exist in the first place.

"OSHO (not Mr. Robbins, but Rajneesh) talks about growing the seed of consciousness,"

--Consciousness just is. There is no point of origination for it to grow from. No size, dimension, location, neither large nor small.

"Eckhart Tolle writes in his recent book "New Earth" that the goal of human life is to bring the unmanifested into the manifested."

--The unmanifest is fully manifest now. Where would the unmanifest hide?..in some faraway realm of the unmanifest?

"in sant mat, the idea is that the the ghee is already in the milk, but the milk must undergo a process for the ghee to surface."

--Then what do you do with the milk? Ghee-milk, milk-ghee...see?

"The question that arises, then, is, is some process necessary for consciousness to "know itself?"

--If it knows itself..."Aha! That's what I am!" Then it has objectivized itself and split into two..subject and object. It can't know itself as any sort of thing. You will never, ever find yourself, only a reflection.

"If the seed id inside us and we wish to grow it, the very reward from the time spent in meditation is our own SOUL GROWTH."

--Here we are again with this 'thing' inside 'us' that needs to grow 'somewhere'. IT can't run and IT can't hide. There's no 'where' for IT to go, no 'place' for IT to be. I say IT is here, but even here IT can't be located. In some future time would this soul be any more than it already is?

Where would this soul grow to? At what point would it's growth have reached it's limit..is a diameter of one million trillion light years sufficient? Or would that be a mere pinhead in a landscape endlessly larger in another endlessly larger than that? Is that any greater than right here? What is the limit of here? Where does here end? You can't say because it has no such limitation. If you are speaking of understanding, there is no "thing" to understand.

"There may be lights and sounds, etc., but these are phenomena associated with the growth process,"

--They are just lights and sounds. Whether the lights and sounds are astral, causal or a shiney red Corvette zipping down the road. In that instant is all of eternity.

"Time and space may be an illusion, but perhaps consciousness may unfold itself within the illusion,"

--There is unfolding, but no thing unfolded.

"Investment and love for the guru from this point of view is none other than investment in one's own soul growth."

This all is a dream in a sea of what is. The guru is you smiling at yourself and there isn't anyone.

"might there not be some process involved in the unfolding of consciousness, and that this process is love and investment at once?"

You can't invest or put another coin in a piggy bank that is completely stuffed, and some call that 'stuff' love. But not the sticky, gooey, sappy, sentimental love. It is a cohesiveness of harmony that resonates with life!

He might say: "But there must be something I can do?"

There is nothing you can do. Have you ever seen one of those pictures with all the wavy lines and colors that look like amorphous fields of nothing? Somebody tells you there is an image in the picture if you will just change your focus. But the harder you try, the more frustrating and difficult it is to see the image. Finally, you just give up and let your seeing just be there and suddenly the image in the picture pops out at you. It was there all along plain as day. Then you say, "Now I see it!" and as soon as that happens it slips out of view into the amorphous field of seemingly tangled images, fully present as always.


Adam wrote...
> First to Stuart, point taken--attachment
> period leads to suffering. But I
> personally have been trying to find ways
> of working with my self that don't totally
> negate the mind's tendencies. Telling my
> mind, "don't be too attached!" often
> doesn't really do the trick

I find it interesting to consider the most simple definition of "attached." Your finger is attached to your body. But your shirt is NOT attached to your body in that way.

No one has to tell your body, "Don't be attached to your shirt!" Because that's just how it is. If there's any doubt, you can take off the shirt, put on a different one, thus proving he lack of attachment.

If you wore the same shirt for weeks on end, you might get the mistaken idea that you (i.e. your body) is attached to the shirt, but it really isn't, you can still take it off.

So... same thing with thinking. Watch thinking for a while, and see that it's just how it is. Thoughts hang around for a while, then go away, thus proving that we're not attached to them. Some thoughts last a very long time, creating the illusion that we and the thought are attached. But if we just meticulously watch the thoughts, we can see that even the most sticky ones disappear, at least occasionally. Thus proving that we're no more attached to thoughts than we are to shirts.

Stuart
http://stuart-randomthoughts.blogspot.com/

Brian, I have given more thought to your insistence on full disclosure of inner meditative experiences.

You point out that RS is billed as a "science of the soul", but that the secretive aspect is decidedly unscientific.

I think that if all the disciples were thoroughly versed in the scientific method and there were a consesus among them to disclose the experiences in a manner which adheres to accepted scientific procedures, then you may perhaps have a valid point.

However, the reality is far removed from having a community of scientists who approach the practice with a scientific frame of mind.

Disciples come from all walks of life, with only a handful having a scientific background. You are expecting a scientific attitude from people who may not have the slightest inclination towards it.

Aside from this, there is also the fact that every individual has a different temperament and applies themselves in varied ways to the practices. The period spent in meditation is also reflective of the attitude and actions of the whole day.

What I am trying to get at is, how do you expect to proceed with a scientific investigation into the results of meditation? What are the parameters, the criteria, the questions, the framework of the investigation?

Would you only invite those who are scientifically-minded to partake in the investigation, or would this give a biased result?

Well, I have many more questions, but I think you get the general gist of my enquiry.

Mysti,

In some ways you have a reasonable point, but you are entirely missing the real crux of this matter of secrecy concerning RS satsangis (disciples) discussing their meditation experiences.

RS is no doubt billed as a "science of the soul", and the secretive aspect is also "decidedly unscientific". But there is a much more definite reason for this secrecy which, oddly, you seem to have somehow totally missed... and it has nothing at all to do with the fact that a majority of RS disciples do not or tend not to have a "scientific background" and are not "thoroughly versed in the scientific method".

Yes, as you say, "disciples come from all walks of life, with only a handful having a scientific background." But the problem is not a matter of "expecting a scientific attitude from people who may not have the slightest inclination towards it".

It is all a matter of what RS disciples have been told and instructed from day one regarding discussion of meditation experiences. For as long as I have known (over 30 years) RS has made it a real point to emphasize to all seekers and aspirants as well as all formal initiates, that no one is ever to discuss their meditation experiences with anyone, other than privately with the master. That is both a request, an instruction, and a firm demand that is made clear to all prospective initiates (seekers) as well as to formally initiated disciples alike.

So since you have somehow missed this extremely crucial fact and point, I have to wonder and ask you, how much do you actually know about RS, and have you studied the RS teachings to any degree, and have you ever actually been initiated? Because if you are inititated, then you would already know exactly what I am pointing out. If you have not been initiated or attended RS satsangs to any extent, then that would explain why you don't get the simple reason for the secrecy and the complete suppression of RS satsangis discussing anything about their inner meditation experiences.

So therfore, the fact that, as you say "every individual has a different temperament and applies themselves in varied ways to the practices", is also simply not the cause either.

You asked: "how do you expect to proceed with a scientific investigation into the results of meditation?"

-- It's not a matter of any scientific "investigation" at all. It is entirely a matter of that all RS satsangis have been instructed never to discuss any their meditation experiences to anyone, and if they do, then there would be dire consequences and they would risk impeding and/or possibly destroying all their spiritual progress. Right or wrong, this is the instructions of RS and its gurus.

So please do clarify as to what extent you are familar and knowledgeable and experienced with Santmat/RS teachings, initiation, and instructions, or not. That would explain why you don't seem to understand this issue. Thanks.

tAo, my post was in response to Brian's observation that the embargo on disclosure of inner experiences in not scientific.

What I am putting forward is an hypothetical situation. That is, if disclosure were sanctioned, hypothetically, how and in what manner would those disclosures be presented and measured in order to satisfy the scientific method?

I was hoping to show that a scientific measurement and analysis, (hypothetically), would present real challenges, or most likely be impossible considering all the variables to which I alluded in part.

Brian's desire that the RS practice adhere to the scientific method not only in theory, but also in observable results, is, I believe, an unrealistic expectation of the aforementioned aspect of spiritual practice.

The fact that there does exist the embargo on disclosure is irrelevant to my argument. I was attempting to invite Brian to imagine the ramifications of an hypothetical sanctioned disclosure, and as a result perhaps perceive some of the wisdom of the current embargo.

As I was sure that Brian knew that I was talking about an hypothetical situation, I thought it redundant to spell it out.

Thank you, tAo, for once again pointing out where my communications lack the necessary clarity.

tAo:

>>>So please do clarify as to what extent you are familar and knowledgeable and experienced with Santmat/RS teachings, initiation, and instructions, or not. That would explain why you don't seem to understand this issue. Thanks.

Thanks for asking, but I would prefer a non-disclore of my own credentials.

Suffice to say, your post didn't bring any new knowledge to bear, but I do appreciate the time and effort you took to elucidate me.

correction

I don't know that Brian's desire that the RS practice adhere to the scientific method is an unreasonable expectation, or that it applies to the matter of disclosing one's meditation experiences to others.

I personally do not see any reason that people should not discose their experiences. I happen to think that it is just simply a way of controlling and preventing satsangis from comparing notes. It is just another a typical cult mind-control method.

I am firmly convinced that the restriction on the sharing of one's experiences in meditation with others has no such justification or any detrimental effect upon the meditator or his/her spiritual progress. It is just another manipulation technique used by fraudulent imposter gurus and their dogma that emploits an ignorant and spiritually immature disciple's unfounded fears of not following the master's orders and not progressing spiritually.

I think that this deliberate suppression or "embargo" as you call it, is quite deplorable, because it preys upon the disciple's spiritual ignorance and immaturity. It is one of the worst aspects of the RS cult.

In any case, Brian will have to address these questions and points with his own views and conclusions.


mysti, I'm not looking for a double-blind controlled experiment with Sant Mat meditation.

Something considerably less -- along the lines of what Ken Wilber speaks of in his writings. That is, the notion that spiritual/mystical experiences need to be validated in some fashion in order to be accepted.

As a Buddhist, Wilber seems to see this as occurring through some sort of Zen master fashion, where Certified Enlightened Beings give a stamp of approval to an experience by a Possibly Enlightened Being.

I don't like this approach. Who decides who's enlightened? That seems like an in-group thing that unjustifiably perpetuates guru/master lineages.

An alternative is to have people describe their mystic/spiritual experiences in as much detail as possible, including what led up to the experience (assuming any practice did; it could have come out of the blue).

If this were done, over time a compendium of experiences would be available. People could look for commonalities and differences. They could see whether verifiable "higher" knowledge was obtained through the experiences.

Why is it that no one with supposed knowledge of higher planes of reality has ever come back with knowledge of some hitherto unknown fact about this physical realm? A scientific insight.

What if a mystic had spoken about quantum theory two thousand years ago, and it turned out to be true? That'd be pretty persuasive, but it has never happened.

The notion that revealing spiritual experiences causes them to stop also could be studied. Christians often profess their faith with no apparent karmic harm. Why can't Sant Mat initiates stand up in satsang and say "Praise the guru! This morning I saw the light!" And go on to describe what happened.

There's a lot of unexamined assumptions, habits, and dogmas in Sant Mat. This is only one of them. I bring it up not out of an expectation or desire that things will change, but in a spirit of inquiry that I consider healthy.

Brian:

>>>An alternative is to have people describe their mystic/spiritual experiences in as much detail as possible, including what led up to the experience (assuming any practice did; it could have come out of the blue).

>>>If this were done, over time a compendium of experiences would be available. People could look for commonalities and differences. They could see whether verifiable "higher" knowledge was obtained through the experiences.

If this could be done anonymously, I would find it quite interesting, but the thought of identifying oneself sits very uncomfortably with me. I feel the same kind of discomfort no matter what the religion or belief system, or the nature of the inner experience.

>>>Why is it that no one with supposed knowledge of higher planes of reality has ever come back with knowledge of some hitherto unknown fact about this physical realm? A scientific insight.

How do you know that they haven't? I mean, what scientist would be keen to divulge his source as a "higher plane of reality"?

>>>What if a mystic had spoken about quantum theory two thousand years ago, and it turned out to be true? That'd be pretty persuasive, but it has never happened.

If a mystic had spoken about quantum theory two thousand years ago, which of the scribes would have understood what he was saying? Would there even have been the adequate words in the available vocabulary to explain the theory? Even now, most people struggle to grasp the mere basics.

>>>Why can't Sant Mat initiates stand up in satsang and say "Praise the guru! This morning I saw the light!" And go on to describe what happened.

This would have me fleeing in abject terror!

>>>I bring it up not out of an expectation or desire that things will change, but in a spirit of inquiry that I consider healthy.

OK.

Still, I find myself wondering whether any of these things you mention have a bearing on whether someone believes or doesn't believe this or that path or religion.

Do we take up a particular belief based on a conscious decison, or is there something else involved?

Personally, I think there is a type of chemistry or affinity involved which goes beyond rational choice. We feel an affinity or pull towards a particular belief or worldview, we're attracted to a belief which sits right with us.

Once we take on the belief, we can find all kinds of reasons to support our position.

Alternatively, there may come a time when we no longer feel that affinity with our belief, so we discard it for something more attractive. Once we have dropped that belief, we find all sorts of reasons to support our stand.

There are many belief systems and worldviews which I find very credible, including some of the ones espoused on this blog, but I have no inclination to take them up for myself. The credibility factor just doesn't do it for me, and never has.

mysti said:
"Do we take up a particular belief based on a conscious decision, or is there something else involved?"

In my case it was a conscious decision to take up Sant Mat. I tried it for 20 years, and when I was not getting any results I looked around and inquired to others who had been practicing for some length of time. When I found that they also had no results then I decided that this process was not working for me and I dropped it.

Perhaps I did have some pull at first, but it was a conscious decision that it made some sense and so I tried it.

Just like I have some pull to my wife. Then we got together and enjoyed each others company and then I decided that I loved her and we got married. Then as time goes on we are still enjoying each others company and I continue to love her. But if we were not continuing to enjoy each others company we probably would drop it and move on.

So I agree with you that there is some pull at first, but in the end there is a conscious decision to get on a path and to stay on it. However, if you are not getting anything for your investment on that path then after a while a large debt is accumulated and unless you are a complete fool you may decide to stop investing in that path, and see it as a lost cause and move on. Write it off so to speak.

mysti,

Thanks for your sincere and thoughtful comments,

I don't see the need for a scientist to examine your mystic/spiritual experiences from your meditiations. I would not need to know who you are. Within this blog, you are mysti. I am roger. I don't think you have an agenda. I don't need to know you.
Your comment would be your comment. Nothing more. Nothing wrong with observing a comment and stopping there. I have no need for the generation of a hypothisis. I enjoy asking questions, however, I would not do that for you.

mysti,

Your comment would be your comment.

I would have no need to write down your comment in a bound research notebook as evidence 'for' or 'against' anything.

A comment doesn't need to be written in any particular style.

Again, you are an OK person. I'm not attacking you or santmat.

Your religious/spiritual business is your business.

Mysti says it herself:

"Personally, I think there is a type of chemistry or affinity involved which goes beyond rational choice."

--The Sant Mat theology is simply not credible to the rational mind, so the above would have to be present in order to devote oneself to such a guru and path.

However, Sant Mat books do admit that faith in the master is necessary at first, but that this faith will be bolstered by experience if the disciple adheres to the masters edicts.

If this experience, as promised, is not forthcoming after due diligence, then it is up to the individual to determine when it is time to move on, that the master does not possess the mystical power claimed, or at least is not able to help the disciple. But the snare and glue of dogma keeps the devotee in place.

Satsangis fail to hold the guru accountable for anything. Any failure is always due to some lack on the part of the disciple. It is never turned the other way. In Sant Mat, what other explanation could there be? After all, a Param Sant Sat Guru is perfect, omnipotent and omniscient, Sat Purush Radha Soami embodied in human form. Who would dare question or doubt such an exhalted being? He is the King himself.

This is why I agree with tAo about the prohibitions in Sant Mat against discussing "inner" experiences being in place simply as a cult mind-control device.

The master can always come up with some esoteric, inaccessable reason for the disciple's lack of spiritual experience, i.e. heavy karma. "Please sir, may I just have just a glimpse of this heavy karma so that I may more easily accept my plight?"

Fat chance.

As we are on the discussion of sharing of one's inner experiences, and SM restrictions of it, I thought it might be interesting to have an excerpt from one of the books, in Charan Singh's own words. He writes:

"I am sorry to learn that Satsangis discuss their internal experiences openly in the satsangs as well as in conversations otherwise. This is not right. This habit of showing off progress is a great hindrance to one's spiritual progress. This treasure should be kept even more concealed and should be more carefully guarded than any worldly treasure."

Is this "mind-control?".....

Tucson, Brian, Osho and maybe Tao,

At your Santmat initiation.

Did you experience a beginning Sound or Vision?

Was someone present at your initiation?
(Well, I guess so, for you to receive the 5 mantra words and some initiation instructions.)

How long a period of time did the meditation initiation last?

During your initiation meditation, did you
verbally describe your experience of the Sound current and light?

Did someone, present at your initiation, ask you any questions of your experience?

What would happen if One stated that they recieved NO experience at the time of their initiation? Would that person have to go through another initiation at a later date?

Surely, your guys recieved something.

Again.....no big deal.......

Roger, there's no guarantee of having any mystical experience at the Radha Soami Satsang Beas initiation. I didn't have one. I don't know of anyone else who has.

There's no consensus on what the initiation supposedly consists of. Outwardly, it's the conveying of meditation and lifestyle instructions that takes 45 minutes or so. Maybe more. Hard to recall.

Inwardly, it's billed as "connecting the soul with the sound current." But the sound current, or spirit, is supposed to be everything in existence. So how can anything be connected with what it already is?

The gurus also have said that initiation is just a communication of the practice used to realize what the soul already is. This makes more sense. And explains why mystical experiences are lacking at the time of initiation.

It's a group thing, usually. Nobody talks, so far as I remember, except the representative doing the initiating. For sure, nobody talks about whether they saw or heard something "inside."

Brian and Adam,

Regarding the quote found in Adam's above comment,

"I am sorry to learn that Satsangis discuss their internal experiences openly in the satsangs as well as in conversations otherwise. This is not right. This habit of showing off progress is a great hindrance to one's spiritual progress. This treasure should be kept even more concealed and should be more carefully guarded than any worldly treasure."

Charan seems to be describing the "inner experiences" as treasures.
If there is no big importance associated with the inner experience, then why describe them as treasures?

Have no fear. I shall grow tired of asking these goofy questions.

roger,

in theory, for the disciple, the inner experiences are important and a treasure because they are likely enjoyable (even blissful) and confirmation of progress on the path. Charan Singh (perhaps seemingly contradictorily) often also writes not to get too attached to the content of these experiences, even the blissful ones, because a disciple should continue progressing and not "stuck."

Roger, I've never understood this whole "guard the treasure" thing. The implication is that someone will steal your mystical experiences if they know about them, sort of like a thief may take your diamonds if you hang them next to a window.

The "devil" (or negative power) seems to be the entity in Sant Mat who does the stealing. This dualistic (and eminently Christian) notion doesn't ring true to me.

Some say it is our own ego that does the stealing. Well, I've watched a lot of sports, and seen a lot of skilled athletes demonstrating a lot of ego. Their performance level doesn't drop because of their egocentricity.

Sure, if the goal is to lose the ego, one could argue that pride is detrimental to that goal. But as I've said before, compliments or praise aren't the problem; it's our reaction that is the problem.

In India I heard many people gushing over the guru, praising him to his face. Why doesn't all that cause him to lose his spiritual attainment? Why isn't the Dalai Lama one huge ego, with all the adoration he gets?

This idea that we have to hide our experiences and abilities -- it's so fearful and mistrustful. I don't believe in the devil, but it's a big part of the Sant Mat teachings.

Brian and Adam,

Thanks again for your additional comments,

Silly me, I can confuse myself so easily.
Again no big deal. If I am confused, it's not important. As stated before, this is a hobby for me. I'm not writing a term paper or book.

However, at Ones inititation.

I would hope that the person, giving the meditation instructions, would clearly explain that the "inner experiences" derived from meditations are practical
and real. The purpose of santmat meditation is to explore, thru direct experience the inner spiritual realms... the Ulitmate truth. Or something.

If I was instructed, up front, from the person giving the meditation instructions, that the inner experiences were theory and only theory.

I think, I would wonder, why am I here in the first place. I would kindly say thanks but no thanks.

What is the point in asking an Initiate to describe their inner experiences when One knows, up front, that the inner experiences are nothing but a theory?

Brian:

>>>This idea that we have to hide our experiences and abilities -- it's so fearful and mistrustful.

When I was young, my father used to slip me a bit of money here or there when he saw that I badly wanted something I couldn't quite afford.

He told me not to tell anyone, not even mother, because our family struggled financially, and every cent "wasted" became a cause for debate and argument.

Had I told my siblings of my gift, no end of bickering and jealous outbursts would have ensued, and my father would have gotten an earful from his wife.

In the above scenario, I think it was wise counsel to keep from revealing my father's gift. It ensured that I would get little treats at appropriate times in the future, and it avoided a family debacle.

When it comes to spiritual matters, aren't we all still children ourselves?

I can easily imagine similar petty jealousies and squabbles arising on a larger scale in a group situation where we share spiritual experiences.

Roger,

I experienced no sound or light at Sant Mat initiation by Charan Singh who was physically present and not a proxy representative. The only bliss I experienced was the relief in thinking that I was now "home free", sort of like a newly baptized or born again Christian that now has his/her ticket to heaven. Also, I was very happy, thrilled to be in the presence of the Param Sant Sat Guru of my time. Such good fortune! Such good karma! The very idea of it!

However, about a decade later, I went to an initiation by Thakar Singh (lots of dirt on this guy), an RS guru from another line. He went around the room and touched people on the forehead. My head filled with blue light. This was not radiant light, nor did it seem to extend beyond the boundaries of my skull. It was not a transcendental, transformative, or blissful experience. My head was just filled with a blue color very much like the sky when you aren't in L.A. That's it. It lasted for a little while. I have no explanation for it. This has happened several times since. Again, nothing special or earth-shaking. No big deal, as Roger likes to say.

Adam quoted Charan Singh:

"I am sorry to learn that Satsangis discuss their internal experiences openly in the satsangs as well as in conversations otherwise. This is not right. This habit of showing off progress is a great hindrance to one's spiritual progress. This treasure should be kept even more concealed and should be more carefully guarded than any worldly treasure."

It seems to me spiritual wealth is not something you hoard and hide like a pile of gold from theives, nor is it anything that can be contolled, owned, or suppressed anyway. It is spontaneous, present, fully available to anyone as whatever is at any moment.

The very first satsang I went to was conducted by a lady named "Mary". She spoke openly of her inner experiences and developed her own following which eventually splintered off from RSSB. It was thought she was a sort of "pied piper" leading satsangis astray on her heretic path and was paying a very heavy karmic price for it.

Such is the religion of Sant Mat.

Mysti,

You really seem to be rather convienently (for you) flip-flopping back and forth between two very separate and very distinct issues.

First you seem to question and doubt the value, sensibility, and wisdom of the open sharing and divulging of meditation experiences.

But then you say "I find myself wondering whether any of these things you mention have a bearing on whether someone believes or doesn't believe this or that path or religion."

-- Huh? What does the RS's imposed restriction and secrecy regarding initiates sharing and divulging of their meditation experiences have to do with any "path or religion" in general?

"the thought of identifying oneself sits very uncomfortably with me."

-- That's OK, but no one is asking YOU to divulge YOUR own meditation experiences, or to identify yourself. The issue here is simply that people (satsangis) should NOT be restricted and told not to share their experiences, if they themselves desire to. No one is saying that YOU have to or must share yours, BUT the RS should not be inhibiting or preventing others from sharing their experiences if they wish to.

And also, btw, the reason why mystics down through history have not returned with any new useful scientific insight or practical scientific knowledge, is probably because it is much more likely they never actually got or achieved any in the first place. Otherwise at least a few of them would have brought knowedge in some form or another. You say that scientists that are mystics may have, but that they would be unlikely to admit that. But you are missing the all important point that no in the scientific community one cares WHERE scientific knowledge was derived from, as long as it PROVES to be correct. But on the other hand, inner mystical experiences have always been, and will always remain, as mere phenomena in the realm of the mind and the imagination.

So it now appears, to me at least, that you are just trying to make lame excuses in order to defend mysticism, rather than approach this over-all issue in a more pragmatic way.

You said: "Personally, I think .... We feel an affinity or pull towards a particular belief or worldview, we're attracted to a belief which sits right with us."

-- But what does that have to do with the RS's restriction and suppression of open sharing one's meditation experiences? So what if people have particular affinities to particular beliefs?

You said: "There are many belief systems and worldviews which I find very credible, including some of the ones espoused on this blog..."

-- Alright, but what might these particular "belief systems and worldviews" that you refer to be?


Mysti said:

"When it comes to spiritual matters, aren't we all still children ourselves?

-- No not "all", so I don't agree that "we are all chidren". You should only speak for yourself alone. But as long as you are judging others, I must say that it does appear that you are correct in relation to yourself... that you do have a rather childish viewpoint with regard to some "spiritual matters".

You said: "I can easily imagine similar petty jealousies and squabbles arising on a larger scale in a group situation where we share spiritual experiences."

-- Honestly, that's simply ridiculous! No one is going to "squabble" with anyone else over the open sharing of meditation experiences. No way. That is about the LAMEST notion and excuse for not revealing one's meditation experiences that I have EVER heard!!! You've got to be kidding... but I am afraid that you aren't. And so it is this very mentality that you have just expressed, that is the prime reason that I now have such a low esteem and regard for RS satsangis and their inane dogma.


Roger,

You said:

"I would hope that the person, giving the meditation instructions, would clearly explain that the "inner experiences" derived from meditations are practical
and real."

-- Huh? There is no such instruction. The instruction is only regarding the specific method and procedure of the meditation. There is no discussion of experiences being either "real", or "theory", or otherwise.

"What is the point in asking an Initiate to describe their inner experiences when One knows, up front, that the inner experiences are nothing but a theory?"

-- Huh? No one has said that experiences are merely "theory". Theory is related to the cosmology, and the meditation and its supposed results. However, the important reason for revealing one's experiences in meditation is, as Brian has indicated, to make corrolaries and comparisons, and to determine progress and validity.

"The purpose of santmat meditation is to explore, thru direct experience the inner spiritual realms"

-- Not exactly. The stated purpose is for the supposed "soul" to travel beyond the realms of matter and mind, in order to reach ultimate libertation in the timeless and imperishable region called "sach khand". Therefore the purpose is not at all to merely adventure into and explore "inner spiritual realms".


tAo:

>>>You really seem to be rather convienently (for you) flip-flopping back and forth between two very separate and very distinct issues.

I can understand how you must find that frustrating.

To me, the issues do not stand in isolation, unrelated to one another. I see connections, associations, and correspondences, where perhaps it would be simpler for the sake of the debate to have the issues clear cut and distinct.

My mind tends towards synthesis rather than separation. That is often the nature of my contribution to discussions, for better or for worse.

>>That's OK, but no one is asking YOU to divulge YOUR own meditation experiences, or to identify yourself. The issue here is simply that people (satsangis) should NOT be restricted and told not to share their experiences, if they themselves desire to. No one is saying that YOU have to or must share yours, BUT the RS should not be inhibiting or preventing others from sharing their experiences if they wish to.

I follow your point.

>>>But you are missing the all important point that no in the scientific community one cares WHERE scientific knowledge was derived from, as long as it PROVES to be correct.

Yes, I follow that also, but again, we seem to be talking past one another.

What I was suggesting is that if a scientist were to receive their inspiration from an higher inner realm, he may keep the source of the inspiration to himself, but still publish the findings, in which case we would have no way of knowing whether they came from his intellectual processes or from inner direct perception.

>>But on the other hand, inner mystical experiences have always been, and will always remain, as mere phenomena in the realm of the mind and the imagination.

That is a very broad and sweeping assertion which cannot be substantiated. It is your opinion or belief, nothing more.

>>>-- But what does that have to do with the RS's restriction and suppression of open sharing one's meditation experiences? So what if people have particular affinities to particular beliefs?

Whether meditational experiences are disclosed or prohibited may not be a significant deciding factor in a person's choice of a path or religious system.

It seems to be a thorny issue with Brian and yourself, or at least one among several. Are you certain it would have appreciably affected your choice to join or not to join, were the restrictions absent?

>>>-- Alright, but what might these particular "belief systems and worldviews" that you refer to be?

This non-dualist view I keep reading here, and stuff along those lines. I do find it very credible, and have found it interesting ever since childhood, but have not had a strong enough affinity with it to embrace it wholeheartedly.

tAo:

>>You should only speak for yourself alone. But as long as you are judging others, I must say that it does appear that you are correct in relation to yourself... that you do have a rather childish viewpoint with regard to some "spiritual matters".

OK, I stand corrected, and I concur. I, and I alone, am a child in spiritual matters. I take back this "we are all children" bit.

So, as I am the only child present, I guess my analogy is mute.

>>>Honestly, that's simply ridiculous! No one is going to "squabble" with anyone else over the open sharing of meditation experiences. No way. That is about the LAMEST notion and excuse for not revealing one's meditation experiences that I have EVER heard!!! You've got to be kidding... but I am afraid that you aren't. And so it is this very mentality that you have just expressed, that is the prime reason that I now have such a low esteem and regard for RS satsangis and their inane dogma.

I think your low esteem of satsangis has already been well established, which does rather make me wonder why you can't envisage ego struggles would arise with meditation disclosures?

tAo said: "But on the other hand, inner mystical experiences have always been, and will always remain, as mere phenomena in the realm of the mind and the imagination."

Mysti said: "That is a very broad and sweeping assertion which cannot be substantiated. It is your opinion or belief, nothing more."

-- It IS my opinion, but can you prove that it is incorrect? You cannot. Because all phenomena, including your futile attempt at reduction ("nothing more"), occur only within mind and consciousness.

"Whether meditational experiences are disclosed or prohibited may not be a significant deciding factor in a person's choice of a path or religious system.

-- So what?

"It seems to be a thorny issue with Brian and yourself, or at least one among several. Are you certain it would have appreciably affected your choice to join or not to join, were the restrictions absent?"

-- I did not "join" anything. And I never accepted or followed the imposed restriction. I have always reserved the absolute right and freedom to do whatever I choose, and RS was no exception. I don't and never did follow such nonsense.

tAo said: "Alright, but what might these particular "belief systems and worldviews" that you refer to be?"

Mysti said: "This non-dualist view I keep reading here, and stuff along those lines."

-- I am not sure what you are referring to. What "non-dualist view" is that? And espoused by whom?

"I do find it very credible, and have found it interesting ever since childhood, but have not had a strong enough affinity with it to embrace it wholeheartedly."

-- What is "it"? To embrace what? As far as non-duality goes, non-duality has nothing to do with embracing anything. Non-duality is not a 'thing' to embrace or not embrace. So I don't know what it is that you are trying to say, other than maybe some sort of comparitive interpretation that you have.

tAo asked: "So please do clarify as to what extent you are familar and knowledgeable and experienced with Santmat/RS teachings, initiation, and instructions, or not. That would explain why you don't seem to understand this issue. Thanks."

Mysti responded: "Thanks for asking, but I would prefer a non-disclore of my own credentials."

-- A convienent and typical cop-out. All you were asked is whether or not you were or are an initiated satsangi, and/or how familiar are you with the RS teachings?

If you cannot simply answer that, then your views and commentary are very suspect. You wish to make comments and express your views, but you want to remain secretive about any affiliation with RS. Because if we are all discussing RS and its vagaries, then why the need for secrecy? If you cannot simply and honestly say whether or not you have ever been involved with RS or have even read the teachings, then you will have little or no credibility in a discussion about RS. It does not matter whether you are an initate or not. It only matters if you are up front about yourself. There are others here who are not initiates, and their comments are just as valid as an initiate's. But they are not hiding behind a veil like you are.

So as I said, as long as you conmtinue to play the game of evasion and secrecy about RS, I can only conclude that your presence here is not credible and is very suspect, to say the least. No one else here is hiding like you are. This is an honest and open forum. To remain in the shadows as you are doing, is not much appreciated or respected. I don't really see what your problem is, and why you are so reticent to simply say where you stand in relation to RS/Santmat. So what's the big secret?

As I said, no one here cares how much or how little you actualy know about RS/Santmat, just as long as you are honest about it. But you are being rather evasive and secretive. So then what exactly ARE you doing here, discussing these matters, if you don't want to be open and candid about where you are coming from?


tAo:

>>>You cannot. Because all phenomena, including your futile attempt at reduction ("nothing more"), occur only within mind and consciousness.

In your original statement you used the word "imagination" instead of "consciouness".

tAo:

>>>-- What is "it"? To embrace what? As far as non-duality goes, non-duality has nothing to do with embracing anything. Non-duality is not a 'thing' to embrace or not embrace. So I don't know what it is that you are trying to say, other than maybe some sort of comparitive interpretation that you have.

Yeah, what you said.

>>If you cannot simply and honestly say whether or not you have ever been involved with RS or have even read the teachings, then you will have little or no credibility in a discussion about RS.

OK.

However, as no-one else here has expressed any need to know these details of me, and as it does seem to be an important criteria for participation to you, I'm quite happy to e-mail you the necessary information in private. It's up to you.

>>So then what exactly ARE you doing here, discussing these matters, if you don't want to be open and candid about where you are coming from?

Sharing my views, as I have done for many years on several other forums dealing with philosophical and religious issues.

If you think I am not welcome here, just spit it out and say so, instead of hedging around it.

If "Mysti" is so reticent to be up-front and honest simply about where Mysti is at in regard to Radha Soami Mat, then perhaps I can help Mysti out a little bit.

Here are some rather revealing past comments that were made by Mysti at Church of the Churchless that answer a few questions, and shed some light into Mysti's current shadowy refusal to be open and candid. They are pretty much self-explanatory.... which really makes me wonder about Mysti's real underlying agenda, and why Mysti is now so secretive and reticent to be open and up front about affiliation and involvement with RS and its teachings, beliefs, and practices.


Posted by: mysti

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

Brian, I've read many of your Sant Mat posts with interest. As an initiate from the 70's myself, I can understand most of the questions you raise, though I don't necessarily share your conclusions.

You say that you feel justified in complaining about Sant Mat, and yet in the same breath you share with us how many years you have dedicated to meditation and seva. I say, "yet", because to someone who has struggled for decades merely to sit every now and again, the fact that you have attended to meditation so diligently is, to my mind, a very great blessing. You can feel satisfied in knowing you have done your best, your conscience can be clear. I almost envy your justifiable complaining, because I do not have such luxury, as I only have myself to blame for any apparent lack of progress.

There is much talk of lack of experience in meditation, but there is the other side of the coin to consider. The fantastic light and sound show comes with strings attached. Experience it once, and you "pay the price" by being overwhelmed by that all-consuming love and intense longing of which hints are given in the literature. This is a path of love, after all, so that should not come as a surprise, but to the unprepared soul, such intensity of love is difficult - if not impossible - to digest, and the result may be a desperate escape back into the mire of the world and its attractions. If you have given 30 years of conscientious effort, then it sounds to me that you have been prepared, and you may be throwing in the towel just when you stand to reap the greatest rewards.


Posted by: mysti | May 16, 2007 at 04:14 PM

========================================

I'm responding to the earlier references by agnostic satsangi and a couple of others to a crisis of faith regarding their RSSB beliefs.

After spending a few years in prolonged and intense online discussions with fundamental Christians and atheists, I also reached a point where I had to be ruthlessly honest with myself and concede that, despite numerous personal experiences which convinced me of the rightness of the teachings, I had no conclusive way of knowing that the master was who I believed him to be, nor that the entire sant mat cosmology described reality.

I faced what I thought was beyond consideration for someone with unshakeable faith in sant mat for close on 28 years - the possibility that the whole thing may be an illusion at best or a lie at worst.

The outcome of this crisis of faith was different to most of those described on this site. The freeing and uplifting realization for me was the fact that it didn't matter whether the master and the path were the truth or not, only that I was being true to myself by following the path. And as the answer to the latter was a resounding yes, I had, paradoxically, reached a far deeper level of faith in the rightness of the sant mat path.

Posted by: mysti | July 29, 2007 at 09:18 PM

==========================================

Yes! And one moment of realization is worth a thousand years of belief.

Posted by: mysti | July 29, 2007 at 10:14 PM

==========================================

Tuscon Bob:

>>>>The 'I' or ego is more comfortable in the security of a belief system, no matter how unfounded, than to be cast into the abyss of infinity.

I don't know, I can only go by my own experience.

During my 29 years of atheism, my ego was more than comfortable, and even prided itself in not needing the crutch of a belief system founded in God.

By conparison, my ego gets a daily battering on the santmat path, and barely has a moment of comfort and ease before it gets put trough the wringer once more.

Posted by: mysti | July 30, 2007 at 06:52 PM

==========================================

Ram Singh:

>>>Perhaps some initiates would like to share their preliminary experiences in their coming on or "finding"(or even hearing about)the path.

Would it make any difference? No matter how amazing or sensational these experiences may be, unless they are documented and recorded in a scientifically controlled environment, they would count as zero supportive evidence of the veracity of the sant mat teachings. And even then they would, at best, only demonstrate the existence of foreknowledge or premonition.

The mind is either receptive to the sant mat teachings or it is closed, and I am personally convinced that this state of receptivity is not in our control, neither can we change someone else's mind through our own efforts. Still, some of us continue to try.

Posted by: mysti | July 30, 2007 at 07:23 PM

=========================================

tao:

>>>On the contrary, your ego is very invested in its attachment and struggle with the dogma and practice of the santmat path.

Tuscon Bob used the word "comfortable".

Of course my ego is "very invested", it hardly knows any other way. That is the problem with ego, it always puts itself center stage.

Isn't it also ego which prides itself in being above the lure of belief systems? Wouldn't it be a crushing blow to such an ego to submit to a spiritual teaching?

Posted by: mysti | July 30, 2007 at 07:35 PM

==========================================

Brian, in your initial post you said that you can't think of any reason not to give out praise when congratulations are due.

I can cite at least one very good reason. Praise and congratulations tend to build expectations in the mind, and if these expectations are not met, then we face disillusionment and possible resentment.

If I speak at a satsang, and afterwards a number of people tell me how good it was, how inspiring, how they gained new insight, etc, then my all-too-human mind will no doubt create expectations of a reward, either in substantive ways through recognition and respect as a good speaker and all that implies, or in spiritual ways through progress in meditation or improved karmas.

This may sound naïve, and you may feel this could not happen to you, but there are people to whom the response manifests in this way, and I am one of them.

In my early days on the path, I received abundant praise, and I know it helped fuel the illusion that I would reach Sach Kand in a very short period of time. Needless to say, such expectation remained unfulfilled, and I plunged into a deep abyss of imagined spiritual betrayal and confusion.

Even on a more mundane front, praise has indirectly undermined my best efforts in life. One or two well-wishers can be encouraging, but when you hear it dozens of times a day, you can’t help feeling that you deserve some kind of acknowledgement or rewards from the “universe”, and if that isn’t forthcoming, or even if the reverse happens and your endeavours are crushed by forces beyond your control, then you are worse off than if no-one had said word.


Posted by: mysti | November 04, 2007 at 08:01 PM

==========================================


Mysti,

Yes, I did say: "inner mystical experiences have always been, and will always remain, as mere phenomena in the realm of the mind and the imagination." Mind and imagination ARE within the domain of consciousness.

And btw, comparative interpretations such as you have admitted to, have nothing to do with non-duality.

You said: "However, as no-one else here has expressed any need to know these details of me, and as it does seem to be an important criteria for participation to you, I'm quite happy to e-mail you the necessary information in private."

-- No need to. I have already searched and got most of the answer and info on my own. And just because no one else here asked you, is no excuse for you to be so evasive about it. Why are you so secretive lately?

tAo said: "So then what exactly ARE you doing here, discussing these matters, if you don't want to be open and candid about where you are coming from?"

Mysti responded: "Sharing my views, as I have done for many years on several other forums dealing with philosophical and religious issues."

-- But again, why be so secretive about your involvement with RS? Especially in a forum that has a lot of discussion about RS? Your obtuse reply is not fooling me.

"If you think I am not welcome here, just spit it out and say so, instead of hedging around it."

-- I never said you are not welcome. Thats not my concern. In fact, I simply said that no one cares what your story is as long as you are honest about it. If you are going to play games and be evasive and mysterious, then that makes open discussion more difficult. And its especially not helpful in this case when the subject being discussed is RS.


tAo:

>>Why are you so secretive lately?

Perhaps I have had some negative experiences online which have made me far more reticent and cautious about sharing details which may identify me.

So now that you have ferreted out this information about me and reposted it here, are you finally satsified, and will you lay to rest your relentless inquisition of me?

I feel certain others are tired of reading about me. Can we get this conversation back on track, please?

Roger,
I was getting ready to write a post in response to your above comment, but tAo's comment above, responding to your misconceptions about SM, says exactly what I wanted to say. It seems that in exploring this "hobby" of yours, you are building an image of SM full of misconceptions. You could continue to revel in the joy of "making observations," though not accurate ones, by teasing Sant Mat out one question at a time on this blog. However, I have to say that if you are actually interested in understanding what Sant Mat is, tAo's earlier advice to attend a local satsang meeting, which are open to the public, and buying one book there, (for something like 2-3 dollars) would much more quickly and accurately fulfill your desires to know what SM is. Otherwise, I think the outcome of this hobby of yours will be only to build a shoddy and inaccurate mental picture of SM.

All you had to do was to answer a very simple and sincere and innocent question. Thats all.

No such caution or worry is needed or justified. There is nothing for you to fear. Simply admitting that you were/are or are not an RS initiate reveals nothing about your real identity. So I don't see what the big deal is all about.

And also if you like, if you ask him to do so, Brian can easily delete my entire recent posting containing copies of all your old comments. I don't mind.

I just asked you a simple little question about yourself and RS. So I don't see why you are so worried. You don't need to be, unless you fear the RSSB will find out who you are and that you are discussing Santmat on the internet. But so what?

If you feel that you cannot act freely and discuss whatever you like, then if I were you, I would think very seriously about allowing that kind of cultic control over me. That's why I don't accept such rubbish.

Cheerio


To Mysti:

All you had to do was to answer a very simple and sincere and innocent question. Thats all.

No such caution or worry is needed or justified. There is nothing for you to fear. Simply admitting that you were/are or are not an RS initiate reveals nothing about your real identity. So I don't see what the big deal is all about.

And also if you like, if you ask him to do so, Brian can easily delete my entire recent posting containing copies of all your old comments. I don't mind.

I just asked you a simple little question about yourself and RS. So I don't see why you are so worried. You don't need to be, unless you fear the RSSB will find out who you are and that you are discussing Santmat on the internet. But so what?

If you feel that you cannot act freely and discuss whatever you like, then if I were you, I would think very seriously about allowing that kind of cultic control over me. That's why I don't accept such rubbish.

Cheerio


This is becoming a rlong discussion...

Roger,

What Adam has advised you is right. If you wish to lean about Santmat & RS teachings, initiation, and meditation, then you should just obtain some intoductory pamphlets and books available at a local RS satsang meeting, and read them. If you indicate where area you live at, one of us may be able to provide you with RS contact information. As for your questions, Brian has already answered, but I'll put in my two-cents as well:

Roger asked the following questions:

"At your Santmat initiation. Did you experience a beginning Sound or Vision?"

-- Some folks do, and some don't. But it's not important as far as the initiation goes.

"Was someone present at your initiation?

-- Yes, the master or his representative, and other prospective initiates.

"How long a period of time did the meditation initiation last?"

-- The initiation event is about an hour. But no meditation is done there.

"During your initiation meditation, did you
verbally describe your experience of the Sound current and light?"

-- There is no meditation done at initiation. In the RS mat, meditation is never done in a group setting. And therefore, during the initiation, no initate discusses any experiences of sound and ight.

"Did someone, present at your initiation, ask you any questions of your experience?"

-- Again, no meditation is done, and no questions are asked about experiences.

"What would happen if One stated that they recieved NO experience at the time of their initiation? Would that person have to go through another initiation at a later date?"

-- Many people do not experience anything. But in RS, meditation is done privately at home, not at initiations or in satsangs or groups.

"Surely, your guys recieved something."

-- Some people experience sound and liht early on, and some do not. But having experiences sooner rather than later is not necessarily considered a measure of progress.


tAo:

>>>If you feel that you cannot act freely and discuss whatever you like, then if I were you, I would think very seriously about allowing that kind of cultic control over me.

It is not anything from RS that I fear, but those who are vehemently against guru following.

At one stage, I was stalked very heavily by someone who threatened physical violence against the present guru. Hopefully he is over it now, but it did rattle me at the time, and has made me even more reclusive than what I may have been prior to the event.

So, I do become wary and sensitive about being questioned and interrogated (or so it feels to me) on a public forum.

You place a lot of importance in honesty and openness, and normally I would agree with you about being open, but sometimes there are valid reasons for trying to withhold personal details.

Adam and Tao,

Remember, this is a Blog to write comments and ask questions. Don't answer a question if you don't want to. Don't write a comment if you don't want to.

Asking questions regarding Religion and Spirituality is fun for me to do. I'm not concerned if my question is correct or incorrect. It's not important, if I am confused or not. My business is my businness. Your business is your business.
Another way to put it, "No big Deal."

I have many other hobbies. I ask questions within those hobbies too. It is just fun and enjoyable for me.

I am not trying to join or knock down any Religion or Spiritual group. I have no written materials, books, or printed materials from the Internet.

I like all you guys and gals. Hopefully, we can remain Internet friends. The comments and questions that you all engage in are very good. Hopefully, no ones feelings are getting hurt.

Much luv to everyone.

roger

my feelings aren't hurt in the least, and can say almost with certainty that tAo's weren't either. And I have nothing against you asking questions at all of any kind. I was simply making the observation that you are collecting miscinceptions about sant mat. I don't have any investment in whether you change that or not. I, like you, was simply exercising my ability to observe and comment.

Adam,

Thanks for your comment.

Many best wishes to you.

As far as the literature goes, I like to read information on the Internet. One can read a pamplet or book, however, if that pamplet or book is reproduced on the Internet, I like reading the same material
from a pc monitor. While, I have a rather expensive printer, I have not made any copies of information that I have read.
For me, as of the present, don't feel a need to do so. Again, thats my preference. Everyone, should collect their information the way they so choose.

Again, no big deal.....
Best wishes to you

Mysti,

In light of your difficulties, I do understand your concerns and fears, but I was not asking for any elaborate details about you and your personal life. Far from it. I was only asking whether or not your were/are a satsangi/initiate or not. There are thousands upond thousands of satsangis. Some satsangis and also ex-satsangis come to this blog and to several other internet forums. But unless you post your real name, no one can determine who you are simply because you say that you are initiated. That is precisely why I do not post my real name. However, from what little you have shared about yourself, I have no idea who you are, nor does any one else. Simply saying whether one was/is a satsangi does not reveal your identity, but it does save alot of confusion in discussions such as these. And my question was for that reason alone.

Nevertheless, you certainly have a right to your privacy and your reasons, and I respect that. I just don't think that anonymously sharing simply whether one is, or is not an initiate, or how familiar one is with RS should be any problem.

If you do know someone who is actually threatening harm to you, you should take solid measures to protect and defend yourself, and also contact the proper authorities... and not live in fear.

If you reside in the USA, I would definitely suggest that you obtain a gun and and learn how to use it to protect yourself. If you are worried about some guru, that really is not any of your concern or your problem ( ie: not your "karma").

You said: "It is not anything from RS that I fear, but those who are vehemently against guru following."

-- Why would you fear that? People have a right to be against gurus, just as people also have a right to follow gurus. So fearing does not make sense.

You said: "At one stage, I was stalked very heavily by someone who threatened physical violence against the present guru."

-- As I said, that's really not your problem. That is a matter for the guru and the authorities to deal with. But if someone was or is threatening YOU, then you should definitely not hesitate to take very firm measures to protect and defend yourself.

You said: "Hopefully he is over it now, but it did rattle me at the time, and has made me even more reclusive than what I may have been prior to the event."

-- I am sorry to hear that. But i would not allow that to affect your life. Also, all this info is far more revealing than just simply saying whether or not you were or are a satsangi. But I would not worry. And like I said, don't take crap from anyone, and learn how to defend yourself. We just have to deal with life the way that IT IS, not the ideal we would like it to be. Don't allow some jackass to make your life fearful.

You said: "So, I do become wary and sensitive about being questioned and interrogated (or so it feels to me) on a public forum."

-- I was not "interrogating" you. I only asked you if you are an RS initiate. Thats not interrogation. I observe how you feel though. I just think you are being overly sensitive and paranoid for no reason.

You said: "normally I would agree with you about being open, but sometimes there are valid reasons for trying to withhold personal details."

-- Again, I understand. I do NOT post my real name (even though I have received a fair degree of criticism for doing that both here and elsewhere). However, I don't do that because I am afraid, but only because it is simply not necessary for me to reveal my real name in order to have intelligent conversation.

In conclusion, I don't think you have anything to worry about as far as some guy not liking your guru. The guru can take care of himself. And you, you should take care of and defend yourself, and have nothing at all to do with someone who stalks or threatens you. If the person realy poses a serious and ongoing threat, then take my suggestions above.

Best regards.

Roger,

You say that investigating sant mat and RS is just a minor hobby. Thats fine, but as Adam pointed out, your questions indicated that you had a number of misconceptions. If you want to learn about the path and the initiation etc, even just a little, then you should just read a couple of the introductory books. Unfortunatley for you, you will not find much of anything on the internet. And asking questions here and there and piecemeal like you are doing, is a poor way to go about it. I am just being honest with you. You could easily find out everything you want to know at a local RS satsang. That does not require joining or following or believing.

You said: "As far as the literature goes, I like to read information on the Internet. One can read a pamplet or book, however, if that pamplet or book is reproduced on the Internet, I like reading the same material
from a pc monitor."

-- There is nothing from RS for you to read on the internet (that I know of). RS does not publish anything about Sant mat on the internet. So there is nothing for you to print out either.

All you need is the small introductory pamplets and perhaps maybe one book that you can easily obtain from a local RS satsang. If you don't want to bother going to that minimal extent, then thats OK too, but you may not get the clear and comprehensive understanding of the path, initiatition, etc. that you desire.

I am not encouraging you to get into Santmat/RS, or to go either way. All I am saying is that if you do wish to learn about it, then it is much simpler and easier to do that, without going about it the way that you are doing here. The discussions here will tend NOT give you a simple and accurate and basic view. The discussions going on here and in other forums involve many other issues that may be very confusing and misleading to someone such as yourself who does not know the basics of the path.

No one here is trying to get you to join RS, to get initiated, etc etc. Its all your own choice. If you wish merely to dabble and be a dillitante or "hobbyist" as you are doing, that OK too. But just know that you may or may not be getting an accurate view of Santmat that way.

You can "collect" your information any way you like. But if you wish to get a basic and clear undestanding of the path and initiation, meditation etc, then it would be wise to just go spend a few minutes and ask at a local satsang. No one will try to draw or hook you in. In fact, quite the opposite.

There is not much more than this to tell you.


Thank you, tAo, for your thoughtful and considerate post.

I have posted here the past couple of days at the expense of more pressing obligations, so I will now withdraw somewhat.

However, the interchanges have been revealing and given me plenty of food to digest, so from that point of view, I don't regret the time spent here.

Roger,

I happen to have the most recent RS newsletter and can provide you with information about the RS satsang closest to you. Of course, I undestand that you may wish your location to be private, so you can simply list the approximate location, nearby town, etc.

Tao,

Thanks for the above comment.

I like my hobby. My method of asking questions is the way I like to ask. Asking a question, one at a time, or several, is what I enjoy.

Nothing wrong with pamplets and attending meetings.

If I am confused or not confused, I will work that out in my own way.

I enjoy studying answers. If the answer is correct or incorrect, then that is ok.

I am not on a time table. I plan to ask questions for as long as I can.

Again, I am not planning to join any group.
However, there is nothing wrong with joining a group.

You guy and gals are fun and enjoyable individuals, that I enjoy blogging with.

Those that choose to answer my questions, please continue. Those that choose not to, thats ok. Again no big deal.

This morning......I have more questions..

Tucson, Brian, Tao, Osho, Adam,

My real first name is Roger. However, like many, I prefer not to give out any really really specific information. On the other hand, I do live in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area.

I was hoping to read more information on the instructions given at the time of santmat initiation. The meditation instructions.

Are the instructions the same for everyone?

Is it possible to 'copy and paste' the instructions here in this blog?

If this is in violation of the secrecy, that is ok. The five mantra words are secret, I am not asking for the words. However, those words have been revealed in other blogs.

Thanks........Roger

Roger inquired:

"I was hoping to read more information on the instructions given at the time of santmat initiation. The meditation instructions."

"Are the instructions the same for everyone?"

--The instructions are the same for everyone. To my knowledge they are not available to paste on this blog. The names given to repeat as a mantra (simran) are "secret" but have been "outed" on the web. Probably a google of "sant mat holy names", "radha soami names", or something to that effect would bring them up.

RS satsang in the Dallas/Ft Worth area:

Sundays 11am at Knights Inn
120 W. Airport Freeway, Irving
contact: 972-403-0378 or 817-625-0758
no fees, no requirements, just show up. There should be free pamphlets, etc. Walk out if you don't like it... No big deal.

I have a friend who hopes I will return to the "fold". No chance. He provides me with newsletters and other RS info.

To Tao, Tucson, Brian, Roger et al,

There is an official website for RSSB on the internet. It is: www.rssb.org. It has recently been upgraded to include information about and photos of the Dera[colony in Northern India where BBJ lives], all the books published by RSSB in many different languages, a world map where you can click on each Science of the Soul Study Center location marked by a dot and see a photo of it as well a short bio of the present living master, Baba Gurinder Singh, and an explanation of the Sant Mat philosopy and lifestyle in a nutshell. You can also find this website by going to Google and typing in Radha Soami. The site will be at the top of the page underneath the photos of 3 of the previous RS masters. By scrolling down this page you will soon arrive at the Church of the Chorchless line and can quickly access it from there. Dive deep, my friends.

Aloha and sweet dreams,

Nagual Don Pedro

first... if you were really a true nagual, you would never be sending anyone to rssb, rssb websites, rssb centers, rssb books, rssb philosophy, or rssb masters. nor would you even call yourself a nagual.

second... i have absolutely no interest whatsoever in diving into any rssb websites or publications. none. been there & done that ages ago. it is all worthless and useless and a waste of time.

third... real spirituality can never ever be obtained from books, websites, paths, teachings, practices, groups, or gurus. moreover, actually each and all forms and aspcts of so-called spirituality are worthless and misleading. spirituality is all an illusion. all and every spiritual endeavor and pursuit is only a veil, an obstacle, an obstruction. life itself is all-sufficent. no sort of spirituality is necessary or useful. spirituality in any form is the problem, not the solution. no solution is necessary. spirituality is, in fact, not spiritual. only life itself is spiritual. life needs no other spirituality. but there really is nothing spiritual. none. never has been. never will be.


Dear tAo,

I am delighted to note your following comments that you have written in true spirit. What is this spirit? It is you, me and all of us only. I may say that sprituality constitutes all of us.
with lots of love,

"third... real spirituality can never ever be obtained from books, websites, paths, teachings, practices, groups, or gurus. moreover, actually each and all forms and aspcts of so-called spirituality are worthless and misleading. spirituality is all an illusion. all and every spiritual endeavor and pursuit is only a veil, an obstacle, an obstruction. life itself is all-sufficent. no sort of spirituality is necessary or useful. spirituality in any form is the problem, not the solution. no solution is necessary. spirituality is, in fact, not spiritual. only life itself is spiritual. life needs no other spirituality. but there really is nothing spiritual. none. never has been. never will be."

TAO: "third... real spirituality can never ever be obtained from books, websites, paths, teachings, practices, groups, or gurus. moreover, actually each and all forms and aspcts of so-called spirituality are worthless and misleading. spirituality is all an illusion. all and every spiritual endeavor and pursuit is only a veil, an obstacle, an obstruction. life itself is all-sufficent. no sort of spirituality is necessary or useful. spirituality in any form is the problem, not the solution. no solution is necessary. spirituality is, in fact, not spiritual. only life itself is spiritual. life needs no other spirituality. but there really is nothing spiritual. none. never has been. never will be."

Same neo-advaitist and improper platitudes coming straight from the naive nature of the imagination ... (I am looking forward for Tao's rant on how his (self-)knowledge comes directly from experience ... bla bla bla ...)

Here is more nuanced and ambiguous--thus less intellectual and imaginational--take on the issue:

From "Ellam Ondre":

[Chapter 3 GOD] ...

5. He who can be realized thus, is God. He has no name; we give Him a name. He has no form; we give Him a form. Where is the harm in doing so? What name is not His, or what form is not His? Where is the sound or form in which He is not? Therefore, in the absence of true knowledge of Him you can name Him as you please or imagine Him as of any form so to remember Him. Your hope for His Grace without any effort on your part is utterly fruitless. Should it be possible to have His Grace without any effort on your side, all would be alike; there would be no reason for any difference. He has shown us the ways and means. Make effort, reach the goal, be happy. Your idleness and selfishness make you expect His Grace without your effort. The rule for all is for you too. Do not relax your efforts. God can be realized by your effort only.

6. There is an effort which excels all others. This may, however, appear to be less effective than devotion to God with name and form. Nevertheless, this is the more efficient. It is simply the love which you extend to all beings, whether good or bad. In the absence of such love to all, your devotion to God amounts to a mere parody. Of what use are you to God? That you seek fulfilment of your desires from God without doing your duty towards the needy in the world must be attributed to your selfishness. In God's presence, there is no use for such. The workings that take place in His presence are all unselfish. Therefore, think that all the Centers are His and He is in all the Centers and thus be devoted to Him. God is truly bound by such high devotion.

In response to 5 and 6 posted by the elephant, some neo or paleo-advaitist might say:

As long as subject is centered in a phenomenal object, and thinks and speaks from this object, subject is identified with that object and is bound.

As long as this condition remains, the identified subject can never be free, because freedom is liberation from identification.

Abandonment of a phenomenal center constitutes the only 'practice' and such abandonment is not an act volitionally performed by the identified subject, but a non-action leaving the noumenal center in control of phenomenal activity, and free from fictitious interference by an imaginary 'self'.

Are YOU still thinking, looking, living, as from an imaginary phenomenal center? As long as you do that you can never recognise your freedom.

how very predictable. the elephant has again made a blabbering blundering fool of himself. apparently this elephant did not grasp the very simple point of what I said, but rather continued with more repeation and mumblings about something which he mistakenly interprets and labels as "neo-advaitist platitudes". and also perhaps that's why he also goes on to post more of his own useless SPIRITUAL mumbo-jumbo.

so as I explained before: actually each and every form and aspect of so-called 'spirituality' is fundamentally worthless, misleading, and useless. all forms of so-called spirituality are entirely unnecessary. each and every spiritual endeavor or pursuit is only like a veil, an obstacle, or an obstruction. life or AWARENESS itself is all-sufficent. no sort of contrived spirituality is ever necessary or useful. spirituality of every kind and form is itself the problem, not the solution. NO spirituality or solution is ever necessary because of the innate self-perfected state of primordial awareness. therefore, all types of so-called spirituality and their effort are not helpful, but in fact are quite the opposite. effort is a sickness. life or awareness itself is all-sufficient. awareness needs no addition of any type of spirituality.

therefore, none of whatb I have said has anything to do with so-called "neo-advaitist improper platitudes", nor does it have anything to do with "imagination". but it is clear and evident that the elephant is indeed suffering from the illusions of his imagination.

perhaps this elephant is unable to read and undertand plain and simple english? and it is also quite apparent that this elephant has some sort of continual odd hang-up and fixation upon some sort of advaitist spiritual mumbo-jumbo... when in fact, my own personal comments had nothing even remotely to do with such advaitist spiritual notions. quite the contrary.

so the elephant might do better back in the dark jungle of his own imagination where he came from.


Good evening fellow bloggers,

In response to Tao's post, I can assure you that I am not a nagual and only used that title as I find it to be amusing. I could have just as easily called myself tonal, swami, sri, avatar, sant, balyogishwar or any other term connoting some level of attainment which I may or may not have. It was a fun pseudonym as far as I'm concerned. Whoever the person is using the name Tao, you are using a pseudonym that you must resonate with and that's cool with me. My sole purpose in writing the previous post was to inform the readers that there is an official RSSB website and how to access it. Brian's latest offering indictes that I caught his attention. My work on this subject is done for now. Before I sign off I want to correct the statement I made about the 3 photos at the top of the Radha Soami page. The man on the left is called Swamiji[1st guru in the RS lineage], in the middle is Gurinder Singh[present guru of RS], and the man on the right is Jagat Singh, the predecessor of both Charan Singh and Gurinder Singh.

Buenos Noches mi amigos,

Don Pedro

>> perhaps this elephant is unable to read and undertand plain and simple english?
>> ... but it is clear and evident that the elephant is indeed suffering from the illusions of his imagination.

These two remarks reflect a certain absurdity, unspecificity and a level of discourse that speak loudly about the adequacy of your action/post/discourse. All this is "clear and evident" just from a few of my posts on the net! Sure ... LOL

>> ... the elephant has again made a blabbering blundering fool of himself ...
Given the quotes above sure! I gave it to you--it is "clear and evident" ... cough… cough ... ;)


>> "it is also quite apparent that this elephant has some sort of continual odd hang-up and fixation upon some sort of advaitist spiritual mumbo-jumbo."
It is quite apparent indeed! First, please it would be preferable if you would do not confuse neo-advaita with advaita—its makes it more difficult to understand your post. Please google neo-advaita to get a general sense of its (diverse and possible and by now relatively conventional) meanings and why none of them can be confused with what is commonly designated by the "advaita" vedanta philosophy. Second, how can you make such statement? Because I pick on some of your posts--or those of Tucson--a few times (not including the reply to the reply) a month on average. "Fixation", "continual odd hang-up", etc. ?!! In order to make a reliable assessment,
should you also account for all the times I DID NOT comment on similar
posts--or those of Tucson? Because—may be you don't know it—but the latter
(i.e. no comment) instances far outweigh the formers (comment) ...
As Daniel Gilbert [Stumbling on happiness] wrote “ This is all very sensible, of course. To statisticians. But studies show that when ordinary people want to know whether two things are causally related, they routinely search for, attend to, consider, and remember information about what did happen and fail to search for, attend to, consider, and remember information about what did not.” P.109
Or, “In other words, we fail to consider how the imagination fills in, but we also fail to consider much it leaves out.” P.113

Whatever reliable standards you have used to come up with your insightful remark, I wonder what evaluation they would provide about your own posting habits on this blog given the average frequency and length of your posts--I don't know if your criteria factor rudeness, aggressiveness, impatience, baselessly insulting others, etc. as well since sometimes "dysfunctional cognitive dynamics" such as "fixation", "odd hang-up" are often coextensive with the latter traits.

Moreover, the whole episode "I am leaving" ... Tao is back ... Adios ... Tao cannot help himself and is back ... Tao's dance with himself unfolds one more time ... was quite edifying, mature and a profound display of self-knowledge, character and continence :( I did not believe you the first time around--it is amazing that you believed/deceived yourself at least twice ...

Why do you assume that I don't "understand" what you wrote? Because I find it incomplete, vain and displaying an intrinsic lack of profound understanding? The point I tried to make is that the little book "Ellam Ondre" is a lot more nuanced, complete, profound and sincere than your naive statements—just read the stuff on Tony’s parsons website for similar naivety and deception. All I tried to do was to highlight some of these distinctions... How is recognizing a certain beauty and depth in the little booklet "Ellam Ondre" a sign of someone's "suffering [from the illusions of his imagination]" again?

Elephant,

You said:

"it would be preferable if you would do not confuse neo-advaita with advaita—its makes it more difficult to understand your post."

-- I don't confuse either one, and I don't even care about either one or the distinction. My posts have noting to do with neo-advaita, etc. I am not into advaita or "neo-advaita". But somehow, no matter how many times I keep telling you otherwise, you keep on thinking that way. Thats whay I say you seem to be stuck in your imagination.

"Please google neo-advaita to get a general sense of its (diverse and possible and by now relatively conventional) meanings"

-- Again, I am not interested in either neo-advaita, or in advaita... in any way whatsoever. I know very well what it is all about, but I do not reflect any of it.

"Second, how can you make such statement? Because I pick on some of your posts--or those of Tucson...In order to make a reliable assessment... on similar
posts--or those of Tucson?"

-- You were and are speaking to me, not to Tucson. So don't confuse what I have said, with what Tucson has said. You seem to mistakenly think and to misinterpret much of what I say as having something or other to do with neo-advaita or advaita. You are incorrect. My comments don't represent or reflect neo-advaita etc.

“In other words, we fail to consider how the imagination fills in, but we also fail to consider much it leaves out.”

-- You obviously have imagined much in relation to me and the meanings of what I say.

"Why do you assume that I don't "understand" what you wrote? Because I find it incomplete, vain and displaying an intrinsic lack of profound understanding?"

-- Because your responses indicated a total lack of comprehension and an utter misinterpretation of what I actually said. Hence your continued fixation upon neo-advaita which my comments have no connection or relation to. Again, I do not follow or espouse advaita or neo-advaita or whatever it is that you continue to presume.

"The point I tried to make is that ... is a lot more nuanced, complete, profound and sincere than your naive statements"

-- How can say that when you don't even know or understand the meaning of what it is that I do say? Its as if all of your comments and responses are about something totally different than what I have actually said. Maybe you are just confusing mine with Tucson's. My statements have nothing to do with neo-advaita etc. My statements are all soley related to tantra and my own practice of dzogchen (the self-perfected state, primordial awareness, and instant presence)

"just read the stuff on Tony’s parsons website for similar naivety and deception."

-- I don't follow Tony Parsons. I am simply not interested or concerned with anything that Parsons or anyone else like him has to say.

"How is recognizing a certain beauty and depth in the little booklet "Ellam Ondre" a sign of someone's "suffering [from the illusions of his imagination]" again?"

-- I was not referring to your little book. I am not familiar with it. I was referring to your repeated mistaken interpretations and illusions and imaginings as regards what my own comments say and mean. So I will tell you again: I am not a proponent or adbocate of either advaita or neo-advaita. What I say is from my own personal view, insight, and experience. My comments have nothing to do with neo-advaita. Period.


Dear Tao:

I think you are overemphasizing—why?—the neo-advaita aspect of my recent comments. I originally—in this Brian’s post—referred to the expression “neo-advaita” by using it as an adjective “neo-advaitist” to qualify some of your comments/propositions because they are very similar to narratives articulated in the neo-advaita scene. I mainly and primarily compared and characterized propositions—nothing more. One little adjective after all! You first used the expression advaita/advaitist—not me—in your previous post in an ambiguous way—I am not sure what you were talking about so I asked for a precision. Forget about neo-advaita—or advaita even though you brought up the latter. I don’t really care. It was unnecessary and accidental to my point. Regarding the meanings and “understanding” underlying the propositions your wrote: the rest stands as far as I am concerned (as I wrote originally):
“Same [] and improper platitudes coming straight from the naive nature of the imagination ... (I am looking forward for Tao's rant on how his (self-)knowledge comes directly from experience ... bla bla bla ...)

Somehow your latest comment concluded with: "I am not a proponent or adbocate of either advaita or neo-advaita. What I say is from my own personal view, insight, and experience. My comments have nothing to do with neo-advaita. Period."

I guess I had to know since ... You think I do not understand squad about what you wrote. Fine. But I do know enough though to observe that your latest post is a series of repeated insinuations and distortions that bear little connections what was articulated in my previous post.

P.S. Tantra and Dzogchen practice! Nice … What happened to Khrishna? Don’t forget a wise man once wrote “all forms and aspcts […] are worthless and misleading”

the elephant,

You must rather confused. Because YOU were the one who was overemphasizing neo-advaita and “neo-advaitist”. I had said nothing about it until I responded to you.

My "comments/propositions" were not at all similar to anything in the "neo-advaita scene". That is only your own mistaken perception. And what I said was only my own persobal opinion, not any "proposition".

I also did not "first" use the expression advaita/advaitist in any of my recent posts. You are the one who interpreted my comments as neo-advaita etc. You brought up the entire subject of both neo-advaita and advaita, as well as your same old “improper platitudes coming straight from the naive nature of the imagination" schtick.

And I also "observe" that YOUR "latest post is a series of repeated insinuations and distortions that bear little connection to what was articulated" in MY own previous posts.

You asked: "What happened to Khrishna?"

-- What does Krishna have to do with this? You must not be paying very good attention, and you seem to have a very very different idea and presumption about me and where I am at... thats because I have made it extremely clear on numerous occasions, that I myself have nothing whatsoever to do with Khrishna" or with any similar or related type of spirituality. I am entirely dzogchen oriented and have been so for quite some time.

And yes definitely, and again, “all forms and aspects are worthless and misleading”... ALL forms of 'spirituality' and spiritual beliefs are misleading.


My Perfect Teacher speaks about Dzogchen & Self-Liberation:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHmaBRlmYNw


"Words Of My Perfect Teacher":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UJoE5o5e98

http://www.wordsofmyperfectteacher.com


The Purpose of Life:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ur0eoKq3KS8


My teacher Choegyal Namkhai Norbu Rinpoche speaks about the essence of Dzogchen & Self-Liberation:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UHmaBRlmYNw


A Movie - "Words Of My Perfect Teacher":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_UJoE5o5e98

http://www.wordsofmyperfectteacher.com


The Purpose of Life:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ur0eoKq3KS8


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