21 February 2017


There is no one true “path.” There is no final, or ultimate realization.  Neither Ramana’s or Ramakrishna’s realizations are ultimate.  All spiritual realizations are determined or conditioned by one’s deeply held beliefs, also known as one’s convictions.
Ramana had a so-called “death” experience where he imagined he was dying, imagined his body was dead, yet still experienced the life force within—his consciousness—and decided then and there that consciousness was immortal.  After that, his attention was always pulled inwards to the life force, and his sense of I into a continuous I-I attention.  From the conviction that consciousness was immortal, he built n idealism that held that the outer world and his own body were merely appearances in his immortal consciousness.

This gradually was expanded into a philosophy that all that was, was consciousness, and all apparently material objects, like the world and one’s own body, were nothing but appearances in consciousness with no existence other than appearance.
  This was expanded until all living things and the consciousness they experienced were one over-consciousness. Even the death of one’s body was only an appearance as are the deaths of every body the same. Only consciousness was real and the material world was not.
Since then tens or hundreds of thousands of followers have been led down Ramana’s path, trying to emulate his experiences and trying to realize their bodies were not real.
Nisargadatta’s spiritual life began with a different conviction.  His teacher, Siddharameshwar told him, “You are not your body; find out who you are.” With this conviction along with Siddharameshwar’s teachings of the four levels of consciousness, ended with a different realization from Ramana’s, which was consciousess had its origin within the chemical processes of the body, and that consciousness created an imaginary world of appearances, including the appearance of one’s own body.  For Nisargadatta, neither one’s own body, the external world, nor consciousness were real.  Only the Absolute was real, Parabrahman, the Witness, which can never be perceived, one can only be the witness.  This witness, you mightsay, was one’s deepest experience of self as the listener, seer, hearer, etc., which when grasped as truth, and actually experienced, was definitely experienced as “me.”  The experience of being the witness is unshakable, and is a different end-point than Ramana’s, and has led tens of thousand’s of modern followers down Nisargadatta’s different path.

There are other paths also, that of Muktananda, of Kundalni teachers such as Jan Esmann and David Spero, where the world and one’s self is experienced as an aspect of Shakti.
Krishnamurti eschewed all such philosophies or phenomenologies of being, and said don’t be captured by the ideas of gurus.

Now comes the direct school of teachings by the neo-advaitins, who invite you to look within, and then they interpret for you what your experiences amy or may not reveal to you.
The most obvious case is that of Bentinho Massaro, who builds a magnificent phenomenology of being by building a model of transcendence concerning your inner experience, and step by step, building a case for the truth of his transcendent idealism, much of which is based on the understandings of modern science, from the multidimension scientists, to the quantum scientists, and positing that their discoveries concerning reality at the sub-microscopic level, or on an interstellar level, are applicable to the human level.

Time after time, Massaro insists that you must gain a conviction of the “truths” that he is offering, because once you accept wholeheartedly his interpretations of your world-experience, you will begin to have experiences consistent with that belief system.

You see, each of us forges a “spiritual” discovery path that could be our own, but which is inevitably affected by the beliefs and convictions one picks up from external teachers.
If you follow your own path, you will likely never have any of the experiences that Ramana, Jan Esmann, or Robert Adams talk about.
When asked the ultimate meaning of Nisargadatta’s teachings gave Ramesh Balsekar, Ramesh responded: peace of mind. Like Christianity, Buddhism, or Taoism, Nisargadatta’s teachings gave Ramesh peace of mind, as he was not the doer, not responsible for his or anyone else’s actions. No weight fell on his shoulders.  No pretense here of ultimate truth or enlightenment.

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