19 May 2012

I get so many comments from folks telling me I totally do not understand Advaita, spirituality in general, awakening, Robert or Ramana, Nisargadatta, or anything else for that matter.

So many people seem to know Robert better than I did and they tell me so.

But very few were with Robert, maybe none that comment here.

Yes, Robert was not of this world. Even his wife Nicole said that even after knowing him for 40 years, she expected a flying saucer to land some day and take him away, back to “his” world.

I can attest to that.

But you have to understand Robert was also human.  He feared dentists. He spread rumors which constantly roiled his sangha.  He played tricks on people, and lots of other things.

So many people have concepts about gurus, what they are like, what they should be like, what powers they have, etc.  Every one of these images and concepts will prevent you from truly seeing and accepting the teacher for what he or she really is, and will prevent you, therefore, from seeing who you are, because the one discrimination begets the other.

Robert always denied he gave Shaktipat, but we could always feel the Shakti in his presence. The Shakti element was strong even as his body weakened.  He always denied he did anything energetically with his students, but we all felt the energy from him and in us. To this day I still feel it as a presence within me.

Robert was a vessel for Shakti.  It had its own will and way, he was not the doer and he knew it.

Some people think he could mind read them, that all gurus had that power.  He could not.

Many people in the Ramana Ashram believed that Ramana could teleport, because after everyone left the hall, some might come back and see that he had disappeared, when he had still been there only seconds before.

Ganeshan, Ramana’s nephew and Editor of the Mountain Path, told me that many believed that, but did not know that there was a hidden trap door near the couch where he lay, through which he exited and went to his room.

So strong is the need in many to idealize and worship someone who can “save” them from suffering and even from death, that they do not see the guru clearly.  So frightened are many that they need a savior to take away their human mortality and vulnerability.

Thus you find all the comments that Ed Muzika is all-too-human versus legends like Ramana or Robert, because they have to believe in a divine or demigod savior.

Even exceptionally brilliant people needed to worship gurus, such as Ken Wilber and his fixation on Da Free John, and oh so many on Osho or Ramana.

Guru worship starts from such an idealization viewpoint.  One thinks of the guru as savior and God incarnate because one projects that salvation need into a guru or series of gurus.

Then you gradually get to know what the teacher is really like, and with that a progressive disillusionment of that need to idealize and project.  If while Seeing the guru ever more clearly as both human and something else, by being with him or her, having projections and idealizations broken, and if then you still can accept and love your teacher, you will find you also see yourself ever more clearly, and accept yourself as he or she accepts you, and gradually you will love yourself as much or more than you ever loved the guru.

Truly, he or she is your mirror of how you see yourself, as well as of your Invisible.

Then one day your Self, drawn by your love and acceptance of both yourself and your teacher, will reveal itself totally to you.  Not in the small bits and pieces you have grown used to by practicing self-inquiry, or self-abidance, or guru-bhakti, but in a full, complete revelation of tremendous power and magnitude.

This is not to say there is just one awakening, this is just one of many awakenings that await the diligent student of him or herself.

Even Robert had a final awakening just months before he died.  I was not there with him in Sedona, but I was told this by Mary Skene, who moved to Sedona from LA, to be with him.  The great Zen master Joshu, said he had 17 great awakenings and thousands of small ones.  So you can never count your journey in life as completed no matter how finished you feel.

A true guru is an ordinary human being but in a most extraordinary way, and so are you if only you could stop to really investigate and to see yourself without judgment, condemnation, or excessive narcissism.

I see so many gurus in the current marketplace who appear so arrogant, self-centered and intellectual, and I can see why prospective students are wary of accepting any, and thus continue to worship some dead guru, such as Ramana, Nisargadatta, or Christ, but are then stuck in relationships where the idealisms and projections never collapse, except as life knocks that need out of them, rather than have a real relationship with a real person, where the deconstructions of your fantasies occur much more rapidly because of that relationship.

The same process holds true between human lovers. There is always a progressive disillusionment, narcissistic injuries, etc., and most such highly charged relationships break up before there is any real transformation. Then the search begins for a new lover, one who is not so imperfect as the last.  But the process is the same as with the guru.

Eventually you see the teacher for who he or she really is, and by that time, you see yourself for who you really are, a process of becoming both progressively more human, and less human at the same time.


  1. Wow Ed, thank you so much, this is brilliant!

    "...a process of becoming both progressively more human, and less human at the same time."
    I feel that is so true, especially since I found you as a teacher. I could never accept the "becoming more human" stuff that well from anybody else.

  2. It would be easy for me to construct an image of you within my head Edji , based on what I read , the voice I hear in Satsangs and recordings etc. In fact I think I did do and to some extent believed this projection was you , at least in some way.

    However when truth in whatever small or big way is revealed by the mind stopping ,this is seen to be you and a more accurate seeing of the real you.

    This comparison is only a thought occurring later when thought starts up again. During seeing me, you ,same , beautiful , flawless beyond words , expressions

  3. "I get so many comments from folks telling me I totally do not understand Advaita, spirituality in general, awakening, Robert or Ramana, Nisargadatta, or anything else for that matter."

    isn t life great, at times? ^^

  4. Much too intellectual for me, can't even understand what was written.

    One never needed to understand Robert as a person, as he himself mentions, "Robert is a horses a@#$."
    We understand him through Silence. All the rest is nonsense.

    Silence IS.

  5. Dear Ed - please just continue to be the way you are: free!

    don't listen to these characters that are trying to change or align You to their own truth or concepts. they re just afraid of their own freedom..

    Could you elaborate on what kind of realization Robert had in Sedona?

    Greetings from Vienna!

  6. You are the best Edji!

    "A true guru is an ordinary human being but in a most extraordinary
    way, and so are you if only you could stop to really investigate and to see yourself without judgment, condemnation, or excessive narcissism."

    Oh, Not that it matters to you but it does to me, my recent comment was directed at the reader who I still mostly agree with and not you.

    I could not find fault with your teaching. You are my sun and I a

    I love you. I was always wary of gurus. It took me a long time to admit you are my teacher. It took even longer to truly stop searching
    and listen with you, be with you. And then, so simple

    "Eventually you see the teacher for who he or she really is, and by that time, you see yourself for who you really are, a process of becoming both progressively more human, and less human at the same

    Again, it is exactly as you say. We do become more human, more
    humble, more simple and still have our quirks. And it is just fine.

    There is a state of innocence for lack of a better word, sometimes wonder. A state of simple, warm affection, anxieties and all! It is
    the constant gentle vulnerable affection that permeates life that stands the most out to me now. Very matter of fact. Fully present, having learned that we are fully exposed.

    Power is for personalities, Life just Is. And there is no way to be and no place to go.
    It all comes crashing down, so so simple it is hard to notice hard to embrace but so true. There is nothing to do, but finally with conviction accept, "I exist" and then accept this dance...I see you, Thank you, thank you, I see you....

    You may not agree with me, but I feel this is my experience and better to speak from my authority then parrot what I have read in books. I
    look forward to much change, many more awakenings. It is a funny thing to admit and still doesn't sound right. All these months, little external change. So simple. Closer than a breathe. so tender.

    Odd, it is the presence one surrenders to, mirrors, and then finds in oneself--not a body. Who cares what a body does? Odd, obsession. To me it seems to just be resistance--thinking you are moving toward something that actually terrifies you. As comes to mind again, "Be still, and know that I am god". Even all the space that contains all
    the movement that gives birth to creation and destruction cannot
    contain this ever-presence, Self.

  7. I am full of gratitude and the deepest of Love for you Ed.

  8. "Robert was a vessel for Shakti. It had its own will and way, he was not the doer and he knew it."

    That s exactly what Dr. MacKimmie and all the great healers esp. Jesus say and said. Its a higher power flowing through them to the patient or student, its not at all under their own control. it has its own will and knows exactly when to stop flowing into the other person...

    "it is not I but the father who worketh through me"

  9. Hey Alex :)

    Noticed you sent greetings from Vienna.
    I live in Vienna too!
    Maybe we could get in touch sometime...

  10. I did not know Robert or Ramana or Nisargadatta or Osho. I am developing a relationship with you Edji, a living teacher.

    About 40 years ago at age17, I unexpectedly had a teacher. A man named Wayne West placed a small add in the Wayne State University campus paper in Detroit, to teach astral and psychic development.

    Once a week I went to his apartment. He sat in a chair, I sat across the room. 1 1/2 to 2 hrs. of mostly silence, sometimes looking into a candle flame, breathing exercises, lying "astral travel meditations". I came without any expectations. I asked few questions. He refused to accept any money, saying that teachings are NOT to be charged for, ever. He loaned me a penguin classics book on Buddhism, which I skimmed and returned and "Character Analysis" by Wilhelm Reich, I regretfully failed to return.

    After about 2 1/2 years of mostly weekly meetings, he returned to Burma. His only instructions: "See life as it really is, not merely as it appears to be." "Look without looking, see without trying to see."
    And finally, "Open the chambers of your heart to all who seek you out."

    For 40 years I had no interest in Gurus. No one ever really "sought me out". But at times I could hear the trees "breathe", see the molecules and luminosity in a rock or person, watch the evolution of a mountain lake or feel the pain or longing of another.

    I became interested in your teachings Edji because of your honesty and courage, and that you were not in the Guru marketplace.

    Because we are receivers and transmitters of energy, I started "feeling your energy" over a year ago, often in the mid-afternoon Pacific Time.

    Call it shakti or anything you want. It an energy that many are feeling from you and it is a subtle mental energy, so the teacher does not necessarily know the mystery is happening.

    Your teachings are important and timely and relate to our present cultural conditions.

    Only those who have expectations will be disappointed or critical.

    With respect,

  11. Yasutani Roshi was once asked by a student :

    "What is the difference between you and me ?"

    The spontanous answer was

    "There is no difference except I know that."


  12. "The same process holds true between human lovers. There is always a progressive disillusionment, narcissistic injuries, etc., and most such highly charged relationships break up before there is any real transformation. Then the search begins for a new lover, one who is not so imperfect as the last. But the process is the same as with the guru."

    Wow, as if spoken for me alone. How blind I have been looking for someone to live up to my own ludicrous concepts! If a person/guru doesn't match the ideas and preconceptions I have, then I keep looking, all the while just looking for the pictures and ideas in the mind to appear outwardly! The other person is not the issue, it is my own mental constructs and wants that create the problem.

    Man, the more I look into myself, the crazier I seem! Luckily there is great peace and joy below all that craziness. When will the crazy inner stories stop? When will I quit being carried away by them?

    Thank you Ed. Very timely once again.



  13. Great insight Rich.

    It is becoming ever increasingly clear that the entire universe is a projection of my mind...a perfect mirror so to speak.

  14. You are inaccessible physically, although I live only 20 minutes away from you. I was drawn to you, am drawn to you, but never seen you. I have driven around Warner Park NUMEROUS times, attempting to luckily see you there. I have sat at the tables there, hoping to feel you there, and Robert. I have emailed you, rarely a response. I think you are too busy or something.

    I no longer read or search for teachings, I am certain of self-inquiry, and have been drawn to you, again and agai.. I guess for me, this is my teaching from you.



  15. PS. I forgot to say that most living teachers seem to welcome students, rather than evade them. I feel the same about you as you did Robert, as I am sure most of us who follow you do. I once said to you in email you have nothing to offer me- I am sorry, and I was wrong.



  16. Jason, I am sorry I have missed you. Email me at satsang(dot)online(at)gmail.com, and we can make arrangements to get together.

  17. wow Jason. Your post touches the heart. Blessings, Mike

    1. Hi Mike-

      Love to you, too. Ed has a way...already feeling it again all afternoon... still 20 miles away, yet no distance is there. Only love love love!

      Blessings, Jason

  18. Unless you are as advanced as Robert, you could not "understand" his final realization.

    An analogy would be, that unless you already understood general relativity and advanced tensor calculus and Riemanian Geometry, then General Relativity would make no sense to you.

    Spiritual "getting it" is the same in a sense, except you have to understand progressive states of consciousness.

  19. That is why we are fortunate to have a teacher that has gone through various stages first. This analogy and the one about the 100 room mansion helps keep us on track. Very intelligent.

    Forgive the question, but how does Silence as a teacher fit into the scheme of the stages and rooms? Some say that is all we need to understand, and as you said some gurus even have students meditate for 8 hours a day?

    Thank you again. Deepest respect.

  20. thanks for the clarification, Edji!

    @Max: sure, i ll be back in Vie next week. You can call me under 6377783 under the old telering code :)

  21. There is nothing to know.

    Why worry about anything at all?

    Who has to understand what?

    If you're a spiritual teacher everything will be made clear if you were meant to be a teacher. The way and what is meant to be will be given you. Mainly through silence.

    Intellectual understanding for one beginning the path is helpful but all that has to go to be free.

    Stand naked before God.

    Hold onto nothing. Not even the knowing of progressive states or the "getting it."

    You are boundless space. Where is there a need for stages and rooms. More gobbledygook. Find the silence and be.

    Just Be.

    Silence IS.

  22. Thank you "Silence IS". Okay, but if one is still fettered by duality as I am, it is normal to ask a question.

    There is a freeing quality to the question itself and the opportunity to finally be able to ask questions to a living teacher is so rare.

    That is why I addressed the question re: silence and the states or stages to Edji. If Edji chooses to answer, I am listening.

    It seems rather dismissive to simply reply to a question with "Who is asking the question? and just Be."

    If there is an agreement at this site among so many that Inquiry is relevant to the mysteries of the Self and knowledge of Self, then why should the inquiry be limited to only certain key questions, such as "Who am I"?

    If there are states of consciousness in the world of appearance than limiting the process of inquiry to one question seems rather dry and doesn't speak to the human need of relationship, which is central to understanding one self.

    The question arises simply because it does. Searching for understanding may just be that for me, it has significance.

    Being able to ask a question is so freeing and new to me that anything else seems like tyranny.

    Thank you again. I will await Edji's reply if it should happen.

  23. Look, the neo advains simplify everything and saw just be aware of one's own beingness. Actually, beingness has many facets, one might say levels, or "states." You have to know them all.

    But, the common mistake is to assume all advaita and Zen masters are talking about the same universe of discourse, and the concepts that explain one teacher's teaching are totally interchangeable with those of another master.

    That is, we assume the experiences that Nisargadatta talk about are the same as those that Ramana and Robert talk about.

    But the words are different and we cannot assume the internal states are the same either.

    So rather than try to fit the doctrines of pone teacher into those of another, I ask instead just to find out who you are.

    it does not matter what any other teacher or master said. This spiritual journey is all about understanding you. You can only do that by going "inside," deeper and deeper into the I-sense.

    Otherwise you are talking about exploring other teacher's room in a conceptual mansion that does not exist except as a pointer, and idea that the task is endless.

    Now, there are different experiences of silence and differing experiences of Void, as well as an ever changing sense of I Am, and disappearances of all those experiences in unknowing.

    Don't jump ahead. The questions will keep arising and distracting. That is what you need to watch, how easily the mind will destroy your practice.

  24. Experience may differ. And there is no way of knowing what is experienced by so-called others. In fact you have no way of knowing they have experienced anything at all. Even if you could, that would just be Your experience. Experience is all there ever is. So what does it matter which colours the televisionscreen turns in? Experience is al there ever is. Can you pinpoint something which is not experience? Now look for the boundary between experiencer and experience.... :-)

  25. I heard this recently and it made a lot of sense to me. "If you see footprints in front of you, then you are not following your own path."

    All any teacher can do is share his or her experience. The listener must remember that these experiences belong to another and may not ever be experienced by him or her.

    Ed, I so appreciate your response above.

  26. Yes Edji, I also so appreciate your response. I am the one who posed the question.

    Edji, I am an idiot. For decades I have had a knot or blockage concerning why what I have witnessed doesn't usually match what I heard. Because attempted conversations with priests and nuns from school all the way into University only helped me to repress that tendency. Even after 2 1/2 years with a meditation teacher, the knot was there.

    I am so introverted and shy that even writing to you now or trying to converse with others is painful.

    When I tried to write a question the other day I was trying to reconcile how Silence itself can be perceived as a teacher. I wrote instead "silence as a teacher" which may be misconstrued by some that I consider myself to be a teacher or aspiring teacher. Nothing could be further from the truth. Even if I were self-realized I would probably work with the plant or animal kingdoms, not as a spiritual teacher.

    Thank you for letting me explain that. If that is what it sounded like, I apologize to everyone.

    To "Silence IS", again thank you for the insight. I (probably) already have a good sense of the importance of Silence (maybe). At the Trappist Abbey where I sometimes retreat the sign that leads to the meditation hall reads, "silence is as deep as eternity." The monks practice a type of Zen in between work and Prayer periods and the silence is pervasive.

    Anyway Edji, even though I muddled what I was trying to say, your response was so freeing. No one ever explained anything like that before that I have heard. The mind drove inward, and well, it was beyond description.

    I won't go further on that.

    A lot of people today are suffering from a condition of "neo-advaititis" (pronounced advi-tight-ass). The cure is to take a dose of your teachings daily and add lots of love. Another remedy is ex-lax.

    It is planting season now. I won't probably write much or again. Thank you for being the pointer that I needed all my life.

    I will contribute to the work you do with cats as well as go deeper.

    With Love and Gratitude, Mike

  27. Something Ed shared a while back which enhances this thread.

    "So, at some point, somewhere along the line you recognize that your spirituality is really about self discovery, and you also realize this is entirely personal; no one can discover yourself for you; you have to do it yourself.

    All the biographies of the great saints, both self-realized or not, as well as all the methods they teach, are their path, not yours. You may find some sense of commonality reading their biographies, like that of Ramana, but you need to realize you are not Ramana, his way may not suit you at all.

    You ask yourself, “Does it matter how Ramana or Nisargadatta found themselves? Does it matter what method they recommend?”

    You see for yourself that you have to reject all spiritual concepts and empty your mind. You have to become self-confident and bold, and you say to yourself, "I am through with all of these ideas, concepts, books, and random teachers. No more! I'm done with all of this. From now on I find out only from myself.”
    You see, it is also not important what his realization was—for you. It was his realization. It was the realization that he needed to come to rest in himself, to find peace, just as Krishnamurti had his own realization, Nisargadatta his, Robert Adams his, and Osho, his. All were different in a sense, because they were the realizations they needed to come to rest.

    In other words, they didn’t all recognize that the I-thought had no referent, nothing that the word ‘I’ pointed to which is the currently accepted criteria of awakening offered by the neo-Advaitins and some other New Age groups.
    However, part of his realization was that any communication that passed between people based on words, was unreal, not truth. All the Scriptures only point vaguely in the direction of the self. You have to dissolve yourself of any connection with anybody else, any teacher, Ramana, Nisargadatta, Robert, Muzika, and find your own truth."