20 September 2014

I HAVE NOT ABANDONED ROBERT, RAMANA, OR NISARGADATTA

I have just added an emphasis on Love to their emphasis on Knowledge (Jnan). This makes the path juicier and more human-focused.  I call this the incarnational or devotional aspect of spirituality.

Many people have left our Sangha because they feel I have abandoned Robert and Ramana.  That is simply, totally false.  I have just added an emphasis on Bhaktic introspection of the I Am sensation to activate the Subtle Body energies and the emotional body energies which adds powedr to anyone’s attempt to know themselves.

You see, Nisargadatta started his spiritual practice looking for the I Am sensation, finally found it, and experienced the endless internal energies and bliss he called Krishna Consciousness.  But later in life he entirely abandoned his body and Consciousness and identified with the Witness, the Absolute, Parabrahman.

In my own experience, and watching Robert’s students, Zen students, Muktananda students over the years, practices that emphasize on the visual/knowledge aspect of spirituality cannot touch or resolve depression.

Many of Robert’s students just got caught into an emotionaless Void, or inner emptiness which was devoid of the Life Force, Shakti.  Some committed suicide. Others just remained lifeless or depressed.

With my background of 30 years in psychology, I spent much time exploring, empowering, and learning about the human self, the personal self, especially as taught in the British Object Relations School. Much later I was to learn that actively directing love to aspects of that inner personal Self, which was called the Inner Child during the 1970s and 1980s, allowed access to buried emotions, memories, anger, jealousy, and most importantly, to fear, grief, and depression.

I find that a majority of those who practice Self-Inquiry in the way taught by Robert or Ramana results in a stabilized but unresolved depression, a huge pool of denied anger, and fear.  These are by-passed and undermine complete realization, or Self-Realization because the power of the personal is missing.  Also, there is little compassion there, because compassion requires openness to the physical and emotional pain of others. Those who have practiced just the direct self-inquiry of Robert and Ramana discount the external world altogether as not touching them, or else say everything is them, but do so from a remote and peaceful emptiness.

Treading down this emotional exploration and integration path should be looked at as following one thread of exploring the I Am, which is closely associated with a separate, parallel thread of the Subtle Body energies, or Shakti.  Many Bhaktis follow this thread backwards to the Self.

But everything I teach centers on Self-Realization by “descending” backwards or downwards through several separate threads or aspects within the experience of I Am.

I call what I teach Incarnational Spirituality, or Devotional Advaita, which is emphasizing the human interpersonal emotions and energies that keep us real, so to speak, keep us in a place we can feel compassion and love, which when turned backwards onto ourselves, will result in the explosive Self-Realization of the divinity, power, and love, that lies within us.  Ramana called this realization of the Self as Atman.  This is purely an energetic/emotional experience that keeps us empathic rather than aloof and distant.

Now, I also still emphasize realization of the Self as the Absolute, parabrahman, but very clearly state that without the continued experience of the personal, love, empathy, the Atman, realization of the Absolute can be very dry and lifeless.

Both paths should be done together.  This makes spirituality more fun, more exciting, less dry, and keeps us involved with mankind.

I have emphasized human love as essential to realization of Atman, but not to realization of the Witness, Parabrahman.

In the end, after having both styles of Self-Realization, of both Atman and Brahman, one KNOWS and one LOVES the Oneness of Atman/Parabrahman unity.

4 comments:

  1. THIS IS AN INCREDIBLE COINCIDENCE. LOOK AT A COMMENT RECEIVED THIS MORNING. EXACTLY WHAT I AM TALKING ABOUT IN THIS POST.

    FROM C:

    Hi Ed..I am not sure how I became interested in Avaita but I did and I started doing self enquiry every day. Unfortunately I became so depressed I have had to stop for the time being. The depression became so bad I had to go to my doctor and get some medication. What was I doing wrong?

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    1. Edji, for me this is the scary point that many in the straight, traditional Advaita world don't get. You were in it for years, with one of the most respected of that lineage. You saw the depression, you saw the suicides, you saw the aloofness and indifference to the world's pain. This embodiment teaching is an emergency response to real people going astray. This is Love.

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  2. With all due respect Ed, isn't it possible that you simply have fallen to your own mind playing tricks on you? I don't believe that you are Self-realized, too bad that Robert is not around anymore setting you straight. A Jnani certainly doesn't create that much drama you do, unless that "Jnani" has still subtle attachments to his ego/mind.
    Did it ever occur to you that you can be wrong and therefore leading those people who are following you astray? May the Masters bless you my friend.

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