Wednesday, December 26, 2007

When Steven Met Ramesh

File under: Gurubusting and Hands Where They Don't Belong

Aside from all the nonsense thrown at us by nincompoops and ninnies who harbor nutty notions about their gurus and enlightenment, there are some advantages to writing this blog. First among them is getting to meet really cool people like Steven Sashen, author of the Anti-Guru Blog and someone who sat with Ramesh Balsekar in Mumbai, India a couple years ago:
I don’t know why I imagined that with a bona-fide “Indian spiritual teacher” in India would be different than what I’ve seen (and grown weary of) everywhere else I’ve travelled but, oh well, here it was again.

So check this out. Ramesh starts out by saying, “If you believe that by becoming ‘enlightened’ you will become free of unpleasant experiences or emotions, you’re mistaken. You will not get special powers, your personality will not change to that of a saint, you will not become well-liked or loved, you will not live in some imagined state of bliss. You will get nothing. Nothing.”

I laughed, thinking of all the times I nodded my head at the idea that spiritual growth or it’s goal, awakening, would give me ALL of what he just described (and how, after no longer nodding at that idea, I was happier than I ever was when I was on “the path” to get, well, happy). But nobody else was laughing. They were all deadly serious, as if they were waiting for Ramesh to become a California teenager and reveal that he was kidding with a big, “NOT!”

But Ramesh wasn’t kidding.
He sure wasn't, as evidenced by the fact that he got caught with his hands where they didn't belong a few years back.

But despite his attempt to dip into the honey pot, Ramesh still knows the score. It's just too bad the folks who come to hear him have their heads stuffed full of the untenable desire to change into something they've never not been.

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53 Comments:

At 12/26/2007 9:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Jody, Thanks for this article and your blog. I sometimes get mad at you and don't agree with your views, but overall I am glad you offer your blog and keep on writing articles and informing us of different gurus and what is going on. So thanks for all of your sharing.
P.S. - Have you watched any of the videos of the Kalkis over at youtube. I watched a minute of one of their videos of him and her up there with all of their adoring fans. I couldn't take anymore, without the risk of throwing up, and I don't like throwing up. I just found it so nauseus and disgusting. Curious about your feelings of it if you watched it.

 
At 12/26/2007 10:14 PM, Blogger jody said...

Curious about your feelings of it if you watched it.

It is not worth giving more than 5 seconds of my life, or the time it took to write this note.

 
At 12/28/2007 12:51 AM, Anonymous Martin Gifford said...

Balsekar is the master of rationalisation.

He says everything that happens is God's will, God's plan. "God's in charge!"

Hitler's gas chambers? They were God's will, God's plan.

Whatever, Ramesh.

Believing that everything is God's will can produce an effect, but it isn't the truth.

To test if Balsekar believed his ideas are the truth, I phoned him and I said "Satan or ignorance is in charge." He said, "No, God's in charge." And he wouldn't let it go.

The dude is blinded by his rationalisations. He lives by them rather than by his so-called enlightenment.

Enlightenment should annihilate your pre-enlightenment ideas. However Balsekar's ideas remained intact. Therefore, Balsekar is not enlightened.

Same goes for Andrew Cohen. In his case some of his ideas were demolished, but they came back when his guru stopped saying Andrew is wonderful.

It's funny that Balsekar says "God does everything", And Cohen says "We do everything."

Which one is enlightened?

 
At 12/28/2007 8:19 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Jody,
I went over to Stephen's site and read the whole transcript of his visit to Ramesh's place (and some other things as well). It was very entertaining....but...why is it (and is it really true?) that HE, Stephen, was the only one in the room who REALLY understood what Balsekar was saying to the extent that he felt it necessary to "interpret" for the rest of the audience? And HE, Stephen, stood up and "explained" it all so succinctly to everyone else...and, of course, Ramesh recognized HIM as "special" and, oh, Stephen felt so sorry for all the poor shlubs who were trying to "get something" by sitting there day after day, when HE, Stephen, understood (although, of course, he didn't do it), the only sane action was to walk away after Ramesh said the first few words. And, naturally, HE got his "aren't I special" face-time with Ramesh and then there's the snarkily self-deprecating.."oh, I'm only here for a wedding" bit, didn't want to REALLY see Ramesh, I'm not like those other geeks who take it seriously.. but, hey, why not? got a free ticket so might as well...blah blah blah. When i read something like this, what jumps out is what a big fat ego this guy Stephen has...no matter how much he "knows", it's all about letting you know just how "advanced" he is and just how "simple-minded" other people are...and the cover-up is always..."oh, I was just passing by..just happened to be there, just happened to explain "the truth" to everyone else". To me, he's a perfect example of a huge problem within the "scene" in the US (and maybe other places?)....people setting themselves up as teachers who would be well advised to take a look at their own stuff a little more intently.

get real

 
At 12/28/2007 8:58 AM, Anonymous Yogi Bonsette said...

"Ramesh knows the score"

What score?

Like all those of his ilk he's lost.

He has even been caught out in his vast ego of lostness.

Should we foolishly mistake smartly repeated words with truth? The words are nothing without authority. The fact that a parrot can repeat advaita words in an appropriate order for reward does not make the parrot a sage.
;-)

 
At 12/28/2007 10:17 AM, Blogger gregory said...

something to do in his retirement, kept some cash flowing, a nice link to his own past with nisargadatta, who i suppose is another fraud, though i like the i am that book...

so, no god, no enlightenment, there is only this fucked world with all these dumb people, and the frauds who take their money, might as well slit my throat

 
At 12/28/2007 1:24 PM, Blogger CHUCK said...

gregory said...no god, no enlightenment, there is only this fucked world with all these dumb people, and the frauds who take their money, might as well slit my throat
...............

That's why I like havin a mule to talk to. The idea of there bein or not bein a God never comes up! But gregory, I'll slit your throat if you'll slit mine!

 
At 12/28/2007 4:37 PM, Blogger yomamma said...

I find sashen's website really tasteless, he's got too many angles , he's too full of himself, and he sells crappy tee-shirts.

 
At 12/28/2007 4:58 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

Martin Gifford said...
Hitler's gas chambers? They were God's will, God's plan.

The idea of "it's all God's will" is a medicine. People often get lots of suffering due to attachment to "I like this, I don't like that." Seeing everything as God or God's will gives relief from that particular cause of suffering.

You take medicine to cure a particular disease. If you instead just take the medicine constantly, the medicine itself causes a disease. "It's all God's plan" is like that. All teachings, all ideas, are also like that.

It's funny that Balsekar says "God does everything", And Cohen says "We do everything."

Which one is enlightened?


"God" is just an idea. "We" is just an idea. "Enlightened" is just an idea. What are you doing right now?

gregory said...
so, no god, no enlightenment, there is only this fucked world with all these dumb people, and the frauds who take their money, might as well slit my throat

I actually don't think all people are dumb. I've found quite a few who have lots of insight, and many who've stunned me with their kindness. But yeah, that's all opinion, like movie preferences, like chocolate and vanilla.

After you throw away "God" and "enlightenment" and all that, it's true that you can slit your throat, though I don't know why you'd want to do that. An equally good option is to eat when you're hungry, sleep when you're tired, and try to help all beings.

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

 
At 12/29/2007 7:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to visit Ramesh Balsekar several times after having seen his books. Having seen countless "gurus" and "saints", I frankly didn't expect much. One day, some people blabbed on and on in conversation with Ramesh about their personal lives. It was so boring I wished there was a way out of the room without causing a scene (I was seated on the floor, surrounded by a few people, and didn't want to bother moving). Then some old guy started singing, strumming on a guitar. It was so bad. Finally, a nice little woman in the front sang some bhajans, and the whole thing was over. The next day I went back (I still don't know why). I sat to one side of Ramesh, and was, again, bored, to the point of not even hearing what was said. Then, someone said something like "then all these practices and mantras I'm doing are for nothing???" sounding horrified. At that moment, I felt like I was falling into a great abyss. Having done lots of practices in hopes of getting enlightenment, I had the sudden horrible, terrifying understanding that I had wasted years of life pursuing something impossible to "get". It was truly awful. Thoughts of suicide crossed my mind like anon's (might as well slit my throat), etc. Then, realizing that I'd never suicide, I just felt trapped, sick, falling from some great cliff. It was a most remarkable thing. To verify, I asked Ramesh "then there is nothing we can do to get enlightened at all??" He said "no". But then he looked at me, somehow noticed the state I was in, I suppose, and said some other things, along the lines of not giving up living, doing whatever we think we should do, etc.

What happened after this, is indescrible, except to say, that it seemed that layers of garbage clouding some of my "vision" were removed somehow, and I felt fresh, free, and filled with an easy energy so to speak. This "effect" was never "lost". After several years, I look back upon that moment as one of the most wonderous things that ever happened in my life. It saved me from a lifetime wasted on things/thoughts/complexes/foolishness that might have consumed me.

I still thank Ramesh for this.

Whatever else he is, he helped me that day beyond any measure of words, beyond anything I've ever read here. Beyond any guru/saint who gave endless instructions on how to live my life, how not to live my life, etc.

Ramesh, to my way of seeing, is a simple man, with a simple truth for those who happen to be in that moment to see. In an instant, I saw that my whole life had simply happened! I didn't stop acting as a result. But it changed the way I perceive my actions. That's all.

If you haven't met him, I suggest you go there.

 
At 12/29/2007 10:31 AM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

Anonymous and Yomamma,

Say what you like about me... it's all true, sometimes, and not true, sometimes.

But "crappy tee-shirts"... now, them is fightin' words!

 
At 12/29/2007 10:45 AM, Blogger jody said...

Enlightenment should annihilate your pre-enlightenment ideas.

Any idea you hold about enlightenment, including the idea above, will always be wrong simply as a matter of course.

There is no single idea ever created across all human history that can even begin to contain a clue as to what enlightenment really is.

 
At 12/29/2007 10:47 AM, Blogger jody said...

What score?

The fact that realization brings nothing except a direct seeing of the truth of our identity. That's it. Nothing added. No magic powers, no special knowledge other than jnana. You remain the same shlub you've always been. Halo not included.

 
At 12/29/2007 10:52 AM, Blogger jody said...

what jumps out is what a big fat ego this guy Stephen has

Don't take this the wrong way, Yo, because I like the fact you are a regular contributor, but you might want to consider the fact you are seeing Steven through glasses tinted by your own ego.

 
At 12/29/2007 11:33 AM, Blogger CHUCK said...

Jody said...you might want to consider the fact you are seeing Steven through glasses tinted by your own ego...
....................
Jody you don't have to worry about yomamma! This old gal's got more bark on her than a hundred year old sweet gum tree! I'd have loved to see Yomma goin up against my friend Betty before Betty got so nice it could almost gag a guy!

 
At 12/29/2007 11:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"what jumps out is what a big fat ego this guy Stephen has

Don't take this the wrong way, Yo, because I like the fact you are a regular contributor, but you might want to consider the fact you are seeing Steven through glasses tinted by your own ego."<<

Hi Jodaleh,
I don't want Yo blamed for my words ("get real" here). Yo strikes me as much more "advanced" than I am. And you're sure right about the "ego tinted glasses"...that ALL of us wear (unless we are beyond ego? I'm not...obviously). But the diff between me and Stephen? I'm not online promoting myself as a teacher, for one thing. This little snarky deal of going somewhere, pretending it's just an "entertainment" for you because you're so far above it, judging everyone else and making pronouncements that show how "you get it" and "they don't" is what kind of bothers me in a "teacher"..seems to me it would lead to the kind of separation and elitism you are always punching holes in? If I did something like this (and I have done..and might do), I would be aware enough of it to be embarassed and sure wouldn't use it as a puff piece...that's what I meant by "big fat ego". Mine is just persistent...not big and fat...maybe it's a male/female thing..I don't have a whole lot of "ambition" when it comes to being a spiritual authority.lol.

get real

 
At 12/29/2007 12:20 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

anony said:
I asked Ramesh "then there is nothing we can do to get enlightened at all??" He said "no".

Maybe that response was most helpful to you at that moment.

That simple "no," though, doesn't really hit (i.e., question and examine) the underlying assumption of the question: that there's this thing named enlightenment that we can or should get.

Ramesh's response "hits" the idea that we can do something to get enlightenment, but it doesn't hit "get enlightenment" as itself just an idea.

Additional avenues of inquiry could be "What idea of 'enlightenment' are you holding, and why?"

Or: "Right now, what do you perceive? What are you doing? That's enlightenment."

In all these cases, enlightenment is only a teaching word. But as such, it can be used to inspire a questioning mind (rather than "I want to get something" thinking). It can be used to point to what's already appeared in this moment, before thinking.

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

 
At 12/29/2007 12:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous said: "Then, someone said something like "then all these practices and mantras I'm doing are for nothing???" sounding horrified. At that moment, I felt like I was falling into a great abyss. Having done lots of practices in hopes of getting enlightenment, I had the sudden horrible, terrifying understanding that I had wasted years of life pursuing something impossible to "get". It was truly awful."

Hi Anonymous,

I'm glad that in the end you had a nice experience with Ramesh, which you say has stayed with you.

But I would like to address what you have said above. There is a further way to examine the statement "all these practices and mantras I'm doing are for nothing"

While it is true that no spiritual practice will make you who you already are, i.e. the nondual self, spiritual practices *can be* useful in order go gain the type of mind which enables one to recognize the truth, i.e. I am already that which I seek. I am already free.

If we say 'spiritual practice' has no value, then that is not a complete statement IMO. Spiritual practice has a value for the mind, and having a certain type of mind, which is relatively calm and relaxed, is useful in gaining self-knowledge, i.e. enlightenment.

These days it is very popular to eschew spiritual practice, to say that it isn't necessary. But this may not be totally true. No practice can make you what you already are. But a spiritual practice may help you to recognize that which you already are. And that direct recognition is also called enlightenment.

 
At 12/29/2007 1:12 PM, Blogger jody said...

I don't want Yo blamed for my words ("get real" here).

Thanks for the correction, GR. Sorry, Yo.

you're sure right about the "ego tinted glasses"...that ALL of us wear

If it wasn't for my own greasy, filthy, cracked and blackened glasses, I wouldn't have anything to say at all.

pretending it's just an "entertainment" for you because you're so far above it

I think I understand how you are reading this, but I think it's more a function of personal expression style rather than an indication of a superiority 'tude.

I don't have a whole lot of "ambition" when it comes to being a spiritual authority.

I do, but I'm trying to keep it a secret... Oops!

 
At 12/29/2007 1:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"These days it is very popular to eschew spiritual practice, to say that it isn't necessary. But this may not be totally true. No practice can make you what you already are. But a spiritual practice may help you to recognize that which you already are"<<

This is an interesting issue...spiritual practice and its "value". What strikes me is how inevitable all those years of chanting mantras,retreats, pujas, meditation,study, blah blah blah...were .At the time, I thought I was "making progress", "doing practice"; I had a definite idea of what "doing spiritual practice was"...which, of course, turned out NOT to be what I was "doing". In retrospect, who knows exactly what I was "doing"?? But it seemed to need to be "done" at the time. Here's something: what do folks here think about coming to the conclusion that "it isn't necessary" after 40 years of doing it (lol) vs coming to the conclusion that "it isn't necessary the first time you walk into a retreat. Do you think that there IS any difference? I know that alot of folks who post here have come from many years of "practice" to a place where they say..."not necessary". I don't have a "stance" on this but I think about it occasionally...how knowing something as a kind of "after effect" seems somehow different. I'd be interested in hearing what people here think.

Get Real

 
At 12/29/2007 2:09 PM, Blogger jody said...

Do you think that there IS any difference?

If it's not killing you, it's making you stronger. This applies to spiritual practice as much as escaping a tsunami.

You've got to groove with Krishna on this one: do it just to do it, not to get something.

 
At 12/29/2007 2:20 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

Anony wrote:
I know that alot of folks who post here have come from many years of "practice" to a place where they say..."not necessary."

There's a distinction between the "outer" practice or "form" of practice... and the inner idea or intention behind it.

The "form" of practice may be things like formal sitting, bringing up "What am I?", repeating mantras, etc. I've done that for decades, and have no plans to stop.

As for inner intention, for many years I practiced with a mind that strived and hoped to get some special understanding or mind-state that'd make me complete, or eternally happy, or something like that. Now that intention is different, and I practice to perceive and release whatever ideas may have accummulated.

Metaphorically: I once thought that practice was like building a house, brick by brick, so that some day in the future I'd have a perfect place in which to live. Now it's more like taking a shower. Each day, dirt accummulates, so I wash it off and begin the new day fresh.

Is it "necessary" to take a shower? Maybe theoretically not, but practically speaking, it eliminates odors and stuff that'd otherwise create suffering for myself and others.

Someone may have the idea, "If I take a shower every day, then I'm slowly progressing towards the day when I'll be so completely and permanently clean, that I'll never have to wash again (unlike the rest of you slobs)!" That's like practicing with the intention of "getting enlightenment" for myself. The intention may serve its purpose sometimes, as a way to motivate practice. But there comes a time when this very idea of "getting something" can be questioned and released.

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

 
At 12/29/2007 3:47 PM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

Hi Anon,

I'd like to address some of your comments about me, not to try to change your mind, but because you've raised some important points.

Admittedly, I have the idea that no matter what I say, you'll find a way to reinforce your beliefs about me, a guy you've never met. I say that not as a comment about you (someone whom I've never met), but because I know from cognitive psych research that once we have have a belief about something (even a demonstrably incorrect belief), our tendency is to use every means possible to validate our concepts rather than look for information that could contradict them (the only thing more interesting than the studies that show this effect is how everyone reading the studies thinks, "Yes, but *I* wouldn't act like that.")

That said, you could surprise me... and, even if you continue to think of me as you currently seem to, I welcome the conversation.

One of the important points you raise, one that's come up here not infrequently, is the relationship between perceived personality traits and teaching.

This is a variation of what's most commonly addressed on this blog, that is, the relationship between certain actions and teaching, especially when those actions contradict the teachings.

Are there traits which make one qualified or un-qualified to teach?

Clearly, were I teaching, "How to be un-opinionated, believe your thoughts, demonstrate meekness, and maintain a serious demeanor," my actions and personality would show that I'm not qualified for that job.

But I'm neither teaching, nor trying to model, how one should live one's life. Nor do I think of what I'm doing as "spiritual." And I don't have a belief system that says, "If you do X, you will change for the better in the following ways..."

So, I'm not sure that what you perceive as my personality (more about that in a second) has to do with whether I'm able to teach effectively.

Clearly, were I teaching biology, and had I demonstrated some knowledge of the subject and some skill in teaching it, your thoughts about me and the conversation that followed would have a different tone. You might think me "snarky" (I'm not sure what that means), but it might be seen as par for the course rather than a demonstration of some serious problem.

And that we treat biology teachers different than meditation teachers also raises some important questions that have come up here often and will, no doubt, continue to arise.

I opened this comment with the phrase "perceived personality traits." The reason points to another issue that's been raised here before: Clear communication is difficult enough when 2 people are face-to-face. But then have the same conversation in print, out of real-time, and you introduce an entirely new level of challenges and opportunities for, at the very least, misinterpretation or misunderstanding.

I'd be surprised if any of us hasn't had a friend take seriously a joking comment made in an email... all for lack of the proper emoticon (or because of it).

So, I'm wondering if you're completely attached to your opinions about me, or if you might consider the possibility that some of your complaints might be more about the way I wrote that piece than they are about me.

I make that inquiry because the motivations and thoughts that you've attributed to me were not what I experienced during my visit with Ramesh.

For example: This little snarky deal of going somewhere, pretending it's just an "entertainment" for you because you're so far above it ... I used the word 'entertainment' because Ramesh is a funny guy. I didn't have any "peak" or unusual experiences, but I did enjoy the guy's humor. No need to pretend; I was entertained.

While, it *seemed* that the idea of "nothing to do" didn't affect the others in the room (certainly not the way it did with the other Anonymous when he was there), I could be wrong. And, either way, I don't have the notion that to whatever extent it *did* resonate with me doesn't make me "above" anyone or anything. Since I don't believe in "stages" or "levels" or "attainment", I don't have a measure with which I would make that comparison with others and, therefore, don't.

Again, this would be a very different conversation if, for example, Ramesh was teaching about natural selection and I had the idea that others didn't fully grasp the topic on which he was lecturing. (and, again, I could be mistaken and, perhaps, EVERYONE got it, but for some reason I was unable to determine that).

judging everyone else ... seems to be something we humans do, just as you've been judging me (or, at least, who you think I am).

There's a teacher I know who's famous for being non-judgmental... I have emails this person wrote that sound like both judge and jury. Most of the offshoot teachings in Zen, for example, came when some student had judgments about his/her teachings compared to his/her teacher.

I'm unapologetically judgmental... in part because I also know that if I examine ANY of my judgments, I have no evidence for their validity.

making pronouncements that show how "you get it" and "they don't" ... this comment is one I find quite interesting, because my interaction with Ramesh was not about making a pronouncement, let alone trying to demonstrate anything about myself and/or others.

I knew that, given my schedule, the odds of my seeing Ramesh again was about 0%. I remember thinking, just as things were wrapping up, "I'd like to make sure I really heard what I think he said... and if I don't raise my hand now, I'll miss that chance."

So, I raised my hand and asked my question to see if I missed anything. I don't think that any part of our interaction was "special", nor that I was "special" because he agreed with me. "Special" is not a word I can remember using for myself or, actually, for anyone else... which is why I find it fascinating that you read the blog post and came to the conclusion that this is how I see myself.

Now, all that said, I'd like to back up a level and ask this: Separate from your thoughts/feelings about who you think I am, what are your thoughts about my comments about Ramesh?

It can be easy to change gears into an ad hominem attack if you don't like the messenger, but where I was going with that blog post was that, unlike the other Anonymous's experience, when I was with Ramesh, I was stunned when the "nothing to do and nothing to get" guy said, "And now here's what to do so you get it."

But I can see how that part of the post didn't get the attention I intended for it to have.

On a side note, Anonymous, your comments made me remember something I hadn't thought of it a couple years. I started the blog because I liked the idea of recording some of what I was thinking, just so I could get it out of my head and be done with it. Why not just write it and keep it on my hard drive? Well, somehow, blogging allows me to be done with it in a way that merely writing and saving a document on my hard drive doesn't.

Frankly, I didn't expect anyone to read what I wrote. I've never actively promoted the blog. And I'm a rare poster. I tend to write only when something is so loud in my brain that it makes me want to jump out of the hot tub.

So, that something I wrote, predominantly for fun (fun being one of the few things that motivates me), creates a stir, I find quite entertaining (there's that word again).

Anyway, all that said, I'd like to toss out an invitation to you, Anonymous... make yourself less anonymous. My personal email and my home phone are all over my site.

Again, I'm not interested in changing your mind about me; whether you do or not is none of my business. It's that I'm quite fond of my seeming critics because I always find great benefit in hearing their thoughts about me... especially in real-time.

Thanks again.

-Steven

 
At 12/29/2007 5:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"You've got to groove with Krishna on this one: do it just to do it, not to get something."<<<

Hi Jody,
Maybe I was thinking not so much about Krishna's teaching from the Bhag.Gita about the inevitability of action and how to "escape" its conscequences...more: do you think coming to the conclusion of "nothing to do" at the beginning is different from coming to the same conclusion after the fact of "doing it"?? I was curious how people here felt about this.... after so many years of exploring.


get real

 
At 12/29/2007 7:15 PM, Blogger gregory said...

to the left of me this last month is been mooji, down the road in the college grounds is the pyramid guru, over around the ashram is this guy florian and my eyes glazed over at the wall of posters at the supermarket, and each of these events has happy customers.

maharishi once said it was the disciples that make the guru, and if you ask mooji or tathagata or guruji, they will say that people just started wanting to be around them, which i think is true of most people who do the teacher thing....

so, i am starting a new blog, it will be called devoteephiliac, lol, not really, and will be devoted (!?) to exposing the ridiculousness of people who come to see teachers.... think that would fly? i don't, they are all satisfied customers, happily attending or donating and passing the word... it was like being with jesus...

it all seems touchingly human, sort of the flip side of offing lady ex-prime ministers in pakistan, or buying stuff at wal-mart made by little chinese girls...

life on earth, the creator must have been an apprentice

 
At 12/29/2007 10:04 PM, Blogger Stuart said...

Anony wrote...
do you think coming to the conclusion of "nothing to do" at the beginning is different from coming to the same conclusion after the fact of "doing it"?? I was curious how people here felt about this.... after so many years of exploring.

My own answer: I haven't come to the conclusion of "nothing to do," nor do I seek it. The conclusion I've come to is that there's precisely one thing to do: respond to the situation of this moment with as much clarity and compassion as I can manage.

"Clarity" is like a mirror. When red appears, the mirror only reflects red; when white appears, only white. That's different from "nothing."

Wants and attachments cloud our original clarity. For example, someone is suffering from attachment to "I need to do something." Then he finds a teacher who says, "There's nothing to do," and that may be the medicine that relieves that particular attachment.

When the medicine has served its purpose, you stop taking it. Otherwise, that very medicine becomes the new sickness: an attachment to "There's nothing to do."

This is why in Zen style, "nothing to do" is just an expedient medicine. Maybe it's useful sometimes, but often it isn't. More commonly we'd say that there IS something to do: when you're hungry, eat; when you're tired, sleep; when someone is suffering, help them.

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

 
At 12/29/2007 11:36 PM, Blogger gregory said...

i practice, just for the buzz, can't beat it, but it makes me too sensitive to be around people, so i am stopping, dullness being better than pain

 
At 12/30/2007 1:10 AM, Anonymous Martin Gifford said...

Stuart,

You wrote: "I once thought that practice was like building a house... Now it's more like taking a shower."

Exactly.

Jody,

Enlightenment doesn't exist!

There is only liberation from illusion.

 
At 12/30/2007 7:08 AM, Anonymous When Will It End? said...

Jody says:

Any idea you hold about enlightenment, including the idea above, will always be wrong simply as a matter of course.

Yes. Including that one.

 
At 12/30/2007 7:41 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It may not just have been what Ramesh said.

Sometimes just sitting in a group and getting the nonverbal climate produced by a bunch of people enhances the effect of a statement that would seem trite and commonplace if mentioned by a fellow standing by himself, or if read by oneself from a book.

I am taking computer applications classes and have found that I learn much more when in a classroom than if I use that same textbook and try to learn it by myself in the school computer lab.

So it isnt just the teacher who should get credit. Something happens when a group of people assembles.

And this group effect can support helpful teaching--and it can also enhance deceit.

Whether we are learning in a group or alone, we still have to exercise discernment.

I dont like God's will being invoked to write off disasters or atrocities. There are Hindus who dare to claim that Hitler was an avatar because anyone who acquired that kind of power had to have earned it through a chain of karma that resulted in a fortunate birth.

Ugh.

The exalted teachings can be easily abused and turned into cognitive equivalents of tranquilizers--make us numb and comfy in relation to problems that deserve our attention and need to be fixed.

 
At 12/30/2007 8:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Stuart,
the whole shower thing was brilliant...thanks

get real

 
At 12/30/2007 8:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>>"So, I'm wondering if you're completely attached to your opinions about me, or if you might consider the possibility that some of your complaints might be more about the way I wrote that piece than they are about me."<<

Dear Stephen,
No, I'm not at all "attached" to thinking about "you" in any way and I do remember the little blip in the middle of your piece about Ramesh...the irony of "nothing to do and nothing to get" guy saying, "And now here's what to do so you get it."
I'm interested enough in what you are bringing up here to go back and re-read your piece on Ramesh and will get back to you regarding some of the issues you have raised.
I will admit very freely having a knee-jerk antipathy to New Age sites that offer: "Instant Advanced Meditation Courses...for a limited time...Volume 1...absolutely free (a $47 value)and, in addition, Kabbalistic Healing sessions and Quantum Wealth
techniques. It may be more to do with me living on the East Coast, where people tend to "specialize" in just ONE of these things...lol! But, really, it's an interesting thing to remember sitting up in New Hampshire 30 some years ago with a great great great niece of Isaac Luria (the Ari of Safed) talking about the Kabbala in hushed tones (and realizing how very ignorant we were, although she was a Hebrew scholar and had made it her life work..as much as a woman could..to study Kabbalah)..and look at it now...red string bracelets all over Hollywood! And Kabbalistic healing by phone..progress???? :)?or.......you tell me :)! Is the IAM technique you are offering ("for a limited time only free... a $47 value") the same as Ammachi's IAM technique? (not a sarcastic question...just curious..but not enough to sign up for it...:), :) ).
As an aging hippie, I could probably have used the Quantum Wealth course but it's too late now...lol!
anyway, I'm not hard-lined about all of this...just nit picking-ly, poking at the sleeping doggies. I do feel, though, that there is a HUGE, maHA, MAJOR difference between teaching biology and teaching "meditation"... the projection dynamic alone is worth a few pages of discussion. And then there's Stuart's shower metaphor...
best to you,
I will go back and reread,

get real

 
At 12/30/2007 10:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just to sound a discordant note.I agree that a lot of Gurus are control freaks but a lot of them are not.At least we have a choice that we can criticise or make fun of them at our convenience & since they preach love,tolerance & non-violence with or without actually following them in real life,you can still pin them down if you are intelligent.I would suggest any of you to take a trip to a Jehadi camp in Pakistan (they are very common here,nothing is hidden,they are all over the place) or the Maoist or Marxist-Leninist terror camps in Nepal (well,they are the de-facto rulers here) or in India (the Indian Govt has lost its control over all Rural areas in 14 out of total 25 states in India which is now called the 'Red Corridor').In all these places you would find a fanatical faith in their leaders-past & present,like Al-Zawahiri,Bin-Laden,Marx,Lenin,Stalin etc & a faith which actually sees killing all those (the more brutally,the better) who criticise,ridicule or oppose their faith.In India recently,Taslima Nasrin,a Bangaladeshi woman author who also happens to be an atheist,was forced to leave her adopted home in the city of Kolkata in India when the Islamists held the city to ransom demanding her head ,rioting,killing policemen & soldiers,burning businesses & what not.Your perspective is what we call "ignorantly American" (has to be since I am yet to come across an American who actually knows & understands about any other country than his/her own).

 
At 12/30/2007 11:25 AM, Blogger jody said...

Including that one.

Wrong. Perhaps it's too subtle a distinction for you, but mine is an idea about ideas about enlightenment. All ideas about enlightenment are wrong as a matter of course, but this doesn't extend to ideas about ideas about enlightenment.

 
At 12/30/2007 11:38 AM, Blogger jody said...

do you think coming to the conclusion of "nothing to do" at the beginning is different from coming to the same conclusion after the fact of "doing it"??

Not if a person keeps up with some kind of discipline regardless. As Gregory said, "I do it for the buzz." Meditation will improve the quality of one's life, that in and of itself is a reason to continue, regardless of where you are on the effort/no effort side of the debate.

 
At 12/30/2007 3:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"Your perspective is what we call "ignorantly American" (has to be since I am yet to come across an American who actually knows & understands about any other country than his/her own)"<<<

Huh? I don't get your point (ignorant as I am). Do you mean not to criticize gurus because there are worse things going on? Listen, if YOU understand "America", I sure wish you'd explain it to ME. I've lived here for more than half a century and I STILL don't understand it! lol! (caps for emphasis...not anger). I'm sure you're well aware that those who post here represent the most teeny tiny miniscule percentage of a percentage point of what "Americans" are interested in, generally speaking?
And, speaking of visiting a Jihadi training camp..if you think WE are bad, you should check out some born again sites on-line...but why would you?

get real

 
At 12/30/2007 4:13 PM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

Hi again, Anonymous,

To answer your questions:

Is the IAM technique you are offering ("for a limited time only free... a $47 value") the same as Ammachi's IAM technique?... I don't know anything about Ammachi's I AM Technique, so someone familiar with it would have to answer. But, that said, I would be surprised if there's any overlap.

And, we could have a whole other conversation about the phenomenon of marketing in this arena. (Again, a conversation that would be easier in real-time, but I'm open to an online version.)

(not a sarcastic question...just curious..but not enough to sign up for it...:), :) ). ... hey, it's free to find out ;-)

As an aging hippie, I could probably have used the Quantum Wealth course but it's too late now...lol! ... well, considering that QW is not really about making money, I think you're still under the maximum age limit ;-)

anyway, I'm not hard-lined about all of this...just nit picking-ly, poking at the sleeping doggies.... And, I do appreciate some of the nits you've picked. I'm not married to the things I'm doing nor to the ways I'm making them available. It's still an evolving process and I appreciate the feedback.

I do feel, though, that there is a HUGE, maHA, MAJOR difference between teaching biology and teaching "meditation"... the projection dynamic alone is worth a few pages of discussion.... Agreed. And, in fact, the projection dynamic was what I was thinking about as I wrote that question. Why meditation students (and teachers) project differently than biology students/teachers *is* worth more than a few pages of analysis.

It may be more to do with me living on the East Coast, where people tend to "specialize" in just ONE of these things...lol!... Hey, I'm *from* the East coast, and now I'm in the middle-ish. ;-) Actually, in many ways each of the seemingly disparate things that you mentioned are merely variations on a theme. I've always fantasized about being someone who only did one thing... but that doesn't seem to be the way I'm built (would my being a nationally ranked Masters -- read: old -- sprinter and long jumper suggest something negative about my qualifications or abilities to teach the I AM Course ;-) ?)

Oh, and don't even get me started on the red strings.

Looking forward to hearing what you find from your re-read... and, I have a hunch we'd have a great time chatting, so the invitation still stands.

Be well,
Steven

 
At 12/30/2007 6:50 PM, Blogger yomamma said...

gee kids, thanks for discerning yononymous from anonymous. I don't want to blamed for the shit i didn't fling, only the shit i did. I didn't says steve's ego is big and fat , only full! I'm just saying as a consumer out here you are pitching several products and services, so you are going to get complaints! which i see you graciously accept, always a good business policy.
BUT,it makes me think of that movie Wise Blood , where the disillusioned wild eyed preacher played by Brad Douriff , starts a church called The Church of Jesus Christ without Jesus, but basically he is still a disillusioned wild eyed preacher. and i think you got the same deal with the Guru, Anti -Guru thing. Instead of being a wise guru you are a wise (or maybe wise-ass) anti guru. ,,but i can't tell the difference. so why bother with the anti- guru stance? marketing choice?
by the way i highly recommend this film Wise Blood , It is based on a Flannery O'Conner story, directed by John Huston in the 80's I think. if not on DVD it should be.
Also regarding Pakistani- discordant -note -guys comments, I think we all appreciate free speech here, that's why we are exercising it, if he doesn't approve of our level of discourse or choice of subject that's another thing, but i guess he is saying we are spoiled for seeming to gripe and split hairs. Having zillions of choices just gives you more to gripe about i guess but ain't it glorious?

 
At 12/30/2007 9:55 PM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

I love the word "yononymous" ;-)

To answer *your* questions/comments:

I'm just saying as a consumer out here you are pitching several products and services, so you are going to get complaints!... So, I gather ;-)

More seriously, I do appreciate that comment as well... I hadn't really thought about what might be communicated by offering several things. I'm a several things kinda guy and just put up the list of what I've been doing with my time/thoughts.

But, I can see, especially from this discussion, what effect that could have. And, again, I'm sure what I do/don't make available will change and evolve in time. Maybe, some day, my fantasy will come true and there will be only one (Highlander reference intended).

which i see you graciously accept, always a good business policy.... why, thanks. I don't think of it as either a business policy or gracious... I simply agree with, or am interested in, the points raised.

BUT,it makes me think of that movie Wise Blood , where the disillusioned wild eyed preacher played by Brad Douriff... ... okay, well, here's another thing to add to the list. ;-) Brad Douriff is a friend of mine who I met when I was getting my Masters in film at Columbia, on the way to inventing the industry-standard word processing software for script writers.

One day, during lunch, Brad, with his usual edgy intensity, dragged his fingers through his hair, pulled a hard toke on a cigarette, stared a bit too deeply into my eyes and said, with genuine wonder and dismay asked, "Why don't I ever get cast as a nice dad? I have kids? I'm a nice dad." The question felt like Reese Witherspoon asking, "How come I never get cast as a tall black man?" ;-)

and i think you got the same deal with the Guru, Anti -Guru thing. Instead of being a wise guru you are a wise (or maybe wise-ass) anti guru. ,,but i can't tell the difference. so why bother with the anti- guru stance? marketing choice?... I would definitely put myself on the ass-side of wise.

"Anti-Guru" was something that a person in one of my classes called me after jokingly complaining about how I would undercut her attempts to be fawning or otherwise toss positive projections in my direction.

It *did* strike me as an interesting angle, to possibly distinguish that I'm teaching something that's usually in the guru-realm, but that I'm not interested the guru game.

I haven't given Anti-Guru much thought, and haven't gotten much feedback about it (until, again, here), so it probably warrants some attention.

I can say that, the few times I've used it as the answer to "So, what do you do?" (because it was easier than actually listing what I do), it's started quite a lively conversation about people's experiences with meditation, meditation teachers, gurus, and the like.

So, Yo, thanks to you as well... and, seriously, you didn't at least chuckle at *any* of the t-shirts? ;-)

-Steven

 
At 12/31/2007 10:37 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Stephen
You have a sense of humor about yourself...a good sign in my book.

get real

 
At 12/31/2007 4:52 PM, Blogger yomamma said...

ok ok, the tee shirts are funny, i will probably turn those on to some people. the one about Found myself, lost my keys is me, also I'm enlightened now F -off. both could work.
HEY everybody check out Sashen's TEE- shirts! they rock!!! don't listen to what that beeatch yomamma says! and he knows Brad Douriff to boot!
OK so,
what was the point of the article about Ramesh for you? , I think just because all concepts of of enlightenment are bogus , doesn't mean it doesn't exist. and just because all concepts of self are bogus doesn't mean our actions and experiences as individuals don't matter. one of my favorite sage wisdoms is the one that says it is the greatest auspiciousness to obtain a human birth and very difficult to do. Ali Akbar Kahn used to yak about that all the time when i was taking lessons at his school. i think it means we are lucky to have the consciousness we do.
Is determinism the same as the god's plan idea? doesn't god have better things to do?

 
At 1/01/2008 9:48 AM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

Yo, Yo...

LOL (re: tee-shirts)... I'm partial to "The Real Tao Cannot Be Spoken..." ;-)

Regarding Ramesh, there were two points I was aiming for.

The first is that if your teacher says, "This thing that you think you want want... well, first of all, it won't give you anything, so there's no point in wanting it. And, seriously, no joke, I'm not messin' with you here: there's nothing you can do to get it anyway. Nothing. Zip. Nada," then to take your teacher's message seriously seems inconsistent with spending 3-5 hours a day, day after day, sometimes for months at a time, in a cramped, hot, Mumbai apartment. Especially if every day is Groundhog Day, and you keep hearing the same "Really, there's no reason to be here," message.

The second was that after 3 hours of "nothing to do because you can't get there from here," Ramesh sure seemed to offer something to do to get there from here. This, too, sounded inconsistent to me.

But inconsistency aside, that little hook at the end is a great way to get people to come back, day after day. It's giving people a little something with their nothing. Some crumbs to eat. It strikes me as a sales pitch. "Seriously, there's nothing to get and no person to get it but -- wink, wink, nudge, nudge -- for you, my friend..."

It reminds me of the neo-Advaita teachers who like to say, "Nothing happened to nobody!" as they tell you the specific time and date of the "nothing" that happened, after which they gave a funny new name to the "nobody" to whom it happened. If it was really nothing, why talk about it at all? To hold it out as anything seems, at the very least, a subtle tease.

Anyway... it's a new year, which means I'm off to join 500 other lunatics who jump in the frozen Boulder Reservoir each time this happens.

Be well,
Steve

 
At 1/01/2008 9:28 PM, Blogger gregory said...

it is a strange job to be a "teacher"; tell all the students to "go away, you don't need me" and the line at your door could get longer...

i think the symptoms of being a seeker are the signs of a mental disease that just hasn't been named yet. i notice some similarities in the hundreds of western seekers who swell this seasonal trendy spiritual lifestyle resort town where i have been living for several years.

there is a high degree of desperateness to not feel bad about oneself. i am talking about adults who come here year after year, sit at the feet of the same teachers and satsang-givers, ask the same questions year after year, wear the same cool india clothes, have the same fake cool indian name, have a cheap winter vacation in the sun...

i have decided that spirituality as an identity has an amazing purpose, it is an iron-clad defense against transformation and change... no one can tell you you are bad, heck, you're spiritual, secretly better than the rest, and all the neo-advaita guys say you don't have to do anything, so you don't have to do anything, and the satsang-givers are usually pretty good at creating a feel-good space for a couple of hours everyday, and there are so many of them, east and west, that you can feel good several times a day with several different teachers. and then cap it off with mother meera later in the week, and nithyananda the day after that, superstar gurus where you can really feel special.

there are western restaurants here now, and i would love to put digital voice recorders under every table during the dinner hour. the dialogue for a mocking satirical book or play would write itself, self-delusion, self aggrandizement, insanity being called spirituality, makes christians look rational.... there is no ego as big as the ego of a spiritual seeker, not even in hollywood, and the effort to hide it is simply amazing, it is the disease of the bourgeios comfort seeker with complexities of guilt and avoidance layered on top that i have never seen before... year after year after year

the conclusion is that other people's words about spirituality change nothing in anyone's life... it is interesting in this world how often things are really the opposite of what they appear; no one is more stuck than a spiritual seeker, but don't dare tell one that, they will hate you.

so, what to do when a horde invades your town? sell them stuff at high prices. they don't mind? heck, raise the price, smile, they will all be gone as soon as it gets hot...

ramesh, seems a simple case, what else would he do in his old age? as to the people who collect and publish his wisdom, well, it is all about feeling special about yourself, isn't it, so of course ramesh is a great guru, and because i was there, so am i...

i really need to start www.devoteephiliac.com

enjoy, gregory

 
At 1/02/2008 1:40 AM, Anonymous Martin Gifford said...

I wonder if Ramesh said to his female seeker...

"If it's God's will, sex will happen. And there's nothing either of us can do or not do about it!"

 
At 1/02/2008 2:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"Anyway... it's a new year, which means I'm off to join 500 other lunatics who jump in the frozen Boulder Reservoir each time this happens.

Be well,
Steve"

Ha Ha...I just finished dipping into the Atlantic at the L Street Bathhouse in South Boston....it MUST be "enlightenment"...lol.

get real (cold)

 
At 1/02/2008 3:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To anon from many posts past:

I had written about something that happened with Ramesh, and you had responded with:

These days it is very popular to eschew spiritual practice, to say that it isn't necessary. But this may not be totally true. No practice can make you what you already are. But a spiritual practice may help you to recognize that which you already are.

I left out the part that I did ask Ramesh the next day about practices (vis a vis the fact that it's my habit to do many practices) and he said something to the effect of: if it is the nature of that particular body mind organism to do mantras or practices, then those practices might continue just as before. (And they did -- I didn't stop them after that incident).

Something interesting I've noticed: I have yet to encounter a single person teaching, whether a "qualified" guru or not, who did not a) have a guru and/or b) do lots and lots and lots of some kind of sadhana before they understood something more ("got enlightened"). So although everyone these days does seem to poo-poo practices, it doesn't really mean anything to me.

Even Jesus got "lost" for a number of years from this world. All the saints I've met have done the same, or done some kind of continuous practices before saying "oh well, guess what -- it's all unnecessary...." Still, others who have done no practices, don't have any understanding about anything.

Lots of people are fond these days of saying "what is happening right now is the important thing.....find that moment now..." to that effect. But that's just another instruction, another practice as well, another notion or concept. In fact there is nothing that anyone can print on this site or any other place that is not an idea that could be argued with. This much of Ramesh's teaching appealed to me -- that everything that we discuss is a concept and could be disagreed with, and therefore, is never, ever the truth (including his concepts, as he will readily say). The only thing, he points out, that all will agree with is that each of us feels "I am" or "I exist". That, no one will disagree with, because we all feel and experience that. Everything else is just talk. I like that about his "teaching".

 
At 1/02/2008 5:18 PM, Blogger Steven Sashen said...

Gregory... spirituality as an identity has an amazing purpose, it is an iron-clad defense against transformation and change ... LOVE it. While I'm not in a resort town, I'm in Boulder, CO, a town of 75,000 with 7 Tibetan gift stores (I think if you're Tibetan, they give you a store if you move here), and a New Age magazine that's got as many ads as the one in New York City.

And, Anonymous... Ha Ha...I just finished dipping into the Atlantic at the L Street Bathhouse in South Boston....it MUST be "enlightenment"...lol. ... it's *definitely* the enlightenment.

(see, I knew there were more reasons we'd get along ;-) )

A few New Years days ago back, I took a dozen people, stark naked, into the Pacific, near Malibu. Well, it didn't *look* like the waves would pummel you into the rocks, but, well... after 5 minutes, we all dragged ourself out of the surf, cold, bruised, bloody, and unable to stop laughing for about 20 minutes.

-Steven

 
At 1/03/2008 9:12 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"there are western restaurants here now, and i would love to put digital voice recorders under every table during the dinner hour. the dialogue for a mocking satirical book or play would write itself, self-delusion, self aggrandizement, insanity being called spirituality, makes christians look rational.... there is no ego as big as the ego of a spiritual seeker, not even in hollywood, and the effort to hide it is simply amazing, it is the disease of the bourgeios comfort seeker with complexities of guilt and avoidance layered on top that i have never seen before... year after year after year">>


Dear Gregory,
Do it! And do the world a BIG favor!

get real

 
At 1/03/2008 9:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

>>"if it is the nature of that particular body mind organism to do mantras or practices, then those practices might continue just as before."<<<

if it is the nature of that particular body mind organism to grab the gozongas of young women in the kitchen, then that practice might continue..just as before...hey, it's not MY fault....lololol! geez! he sounds exactly like my brother-in-law.

 
At 1/05/2008 2:54 PM, Blogger yomamma said...

this stuff is so sticky, but here i go, Chogyam Trungpa Rimpoche, characterized most practices and "spiritual pursuits" as inherently aggressive and violent,if you are trying to affect, achieve something. . teachers of his ilk will promise no miracles, bliss, non-suffering,enlightenment, just to see things as they are.(kind of like Ramesh)
Buddha realized that all the practice shenanagans of his day were for nought, so he recomended just sitting there and breathing, do as little as possible.
Krishna recommended doing without attachment.
Der Bingle said dobbie doobie do. sorry!
all this being said you could get fanatic and rigid about any approach and end up defeating all the wisdom in the world. Is this where idea of middle way comes in.?
I think all of us who watched Kung Foo or read any Don Jaun got a pop culture introduction to non -doing. it's the intention that you bring to your practice,that counts,what ever it is. if you are always recruiting/selling and/or preaching what can you intention be? also if you are ready to give up practice, i figure that's up to you, but most of us have something we do that might be considered a practice even just reading to learn more,.singing a song or feeding the mule. chopping the wood etc.

i think there was a reaction on some peoples parts (like mine) To Stephan Sashen's blog , because most of us are so tired of being pitched to. unfortunately words like quantum and kabala have been rendered meaningless, or too packed with kookoo contradictory meanings. so if you have some intention to communicate something using those can be dicy.

i work out of an alternative health clinic where we all have some kind of spiritual practice. all of us refrain from pushing our practices except for one who keeps a culty organizations propaganda around . that person was asked not to put this stuff up on the communal front desk. oh yah. i forgot we also had a buddhist for many years , part of his gig was advertising for his temples meditation program. people were more tolerant of that person, I think he was perceived as being less obnoxious, less culty and pushy.still his organization had a pretty slick public image. and judging from some of the teachings, they used quite an orthodox almost medieval approach . the spiritual market place has gotten so out of control you almost can't blame people for having poor , cloudy judgment at times.

 
At 1/06/2008 9:11 PM, Blogger gregory said...

one good thing about the (dreaded) spiritual marketplace, concepts which once needed explaining, such as the word meditation, or yoga, in 1970, are now known by everybody.

as much as i shudder whenever i see some satsang-giver with the word "papaji/poonjaji/osho" in his "lineage", it has become fairly mainstream knowledge now that you can watch your thoughts.

so something is changing, ever so slowly in terms of a single life span, but rather speedily in terms of culture.

yomama, i had the same surprise the first time i visited steve sashen's site.... it was via a comment of his that seemed to say no teacher is needed, and i went to the site and it was seemingly the site of a teacher? a commercial one at that! it took awhile before i got used to his tone and his wisdom, the first impression being that he talked out of both sides, etc....

now it is fine, and i will willingly give him my coolest spiritual t-shirt ideas.... (the problem with real life is that it takes so much time..., or, don't bug me, i'm being spiritual)

 
At 1/07/2008 4:22 PM, Blogger yomamma said...

(the problem with real life is that it takes so much time..., or, don't bug me, i'm being spiritual)

This sounds interesting why don't you elaborate. when are you starting your blog?

 
At 5/08/2013 1:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What about Ramana Maharshi? He was flooded with a heightened state of consciousness/bliss/ awareness at age 17 and for 54 years did not care a hoot about his own body. I can go on with further details but you can look it up yourselves. Imagine a kid with no home or friends around him and all by himself for so many years until he was discovered by a sanyasi. Just read his biography. Don't just talk about this imbecile and sexual deviant Ramesh who was just another ordinary fraudulent person and a not a sage at all.

 

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