Life of Understanding – Week 9


“The Traditional
Fifth Stage Teachings Speak To the ego-self as universal
mind, and They Call For self-Transcendence Through Ascended
Gnosis, and Via The Practice Of Ascent To High Gnosis Via
The Redirection Of the bodily Manifested energies Of Cosmic
45 – The Dawn Horse Testament



The Problem of Mind and
Habit Energy



“the world starts from memory,
memory in itself as retained in the Alaya universal mind.
When we are removed from the influence of false
discrimination the whole Vijnana system woven around the
Alaya as center experiences a revulsion toward true
perception (paravritt). This is the gist of the teaching of
the Lankavatara”.

Studies in the
Lankavatara Sutra by Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki, written in



Vasana – Memory (habit

The following are from my studies at
Tulane University (1973-4) and a book Studies in the
Lankavatara Sutra by Daisetz Teitaro Suzuki, written in

Discrimination is the result of
memory (VASANA…habit energy) accumulated from the unknown
past. VASANA (memory) literally means ‘perfuming’ or
‘fumigation’, that is, it is a kind of energy that is left
behind when an act is accomplished and has the power to
rekindle the old and seek out new impressions.

Through this ‘perfuming’ reelection
takes place which is the thing as discrimination, and we
have a world of opposites and contraries with all its
practical consequences. The triple world, so called, is
therefore the shadow of a self-reflecting and self-creating
mind. Hence the doctrine of “MIND ONLY”

VASANA (habit energy) is so
contaminated with ignorance and wrong judgments and all
sorts of attachments, it reacts upon an external world in a
way detrimental to the realization of truth. The state of
realization is obtained by a means of revulsion (Paravritti)
at the deepest seat of consciousness know as the

Alayavijnana is a kind of mental
receptacle where all the memory of one’s past deeds and
psychic activities is deposited and preserved in a form of
energy called VASANA or habit energy.

Vasana –

This is one of the most important
conceptions in the system of Vijnanas (Mind).

Vasana comes from the root VAS
meaning “to dwell”, “to stay” or “to perfume” and used in
combination, that is, in the sense of a perfuming energy
that leaves its essence permanently behind in the things it
has perfumed. The Chinese have translated it “habit”, “long
usage” or “repeated experience”. Vasana is therefore a kind
of super-sensuous energy mysteriously emanating from every
thought, every feeling, or every deed one has done or does,
which lives latently in the storehouse called

Vasana is morally corrupt and
logically erroneous inasmuch as it creates an external world
and causes us to cling to it as real and final. In modern
psychology, we can say that vasana corresponds to memory in
its widest sense. This perfuming or leaving impressions is
sometimes known as BIJA (memory/sowing seeds).

Psychologically vasana is memory,
for it is something left after a deed is done, mental or
physical, and it retained and stored in the Alaya as a sort
of latent energy ready to be set in motion. this memory or
‘habit-energy’, or ‘habitual perfuming is not necessarily
individual’ the Alaya being super-individual holds in it not
only individual memory but all that has been experienced by
sentient beings. When the sutra says that in the Alaya is
found all that has been going on since beginningless time
systematically stored up as a kind of seed, this does not
refer to individual experiences, but to something general,
beyond the individual, making up in a way the background on
which all individual psychic activities are reflected.
Therefore, the alaya is originally pure, it is the abode of
Tathagatahood (Buddhahood), where no defilement’s of the
particle arising intellect and affection can reach; purity
in terms of logic means universality, and defilement’s or
sins means individuation, from which attachments of various
forms are derived.

In short, the world starts from
memory, memory in itself as retained in the Alaya universal
mind. When we are removed from the influence of false
discrimination the whole Vijnana system woven around the
Alaya as center experiences a revulsion toward true
perception (paravritt). This is the gist of the teaching of
the Lankavatara.


How Adi Da (Franklin Jones)
developed his understanding of the power of mind and desire.
The following is from the Knee of Listening, Chapter 11,
“The Problem of Mind”.


“For the first two or three weeks
after our return to New York I lived and felt and knew as
the Divine itself. There was no separation in consciousness,
no distracting tendencies, no impurities, and not a trace of
dilemma. But, gradually, as the weeks passed, I began to
witness the piecemeal return of old sensations and thoughts,
then the desires that follow them, and then the actual
practice of old habits. When I would sit to meditate in the
effortless manner Baba had taught me I would feel these old
problems. And it became a matter of conflict in me somehow
to make these feelings vanish.

Life in New York seemed to require
an energy of involvement that itself created conflict and
the mind of effort. So that soon I began to pursue the state
I had known in India. It became a problem in me to regain
that state. The thing that I had known relieved all effort
and amounted only to a free enjoyment of perfect knowledge.
But now it began to seem unavailable, a goal requiring
another kind of effort.

At first this change was only subtly
perceived. I could not admit that I had lost the fundamental
reality that had appeared to me at the Ashram. But,
gradually, I began to realize, to my horror and despair,
that the mind and all its conflict of desire was rising
again, untouched by any illumination.

This became a very disturbing
reversal for me. (I had not yet become consistently
stabilized in the “Witness-Position” . Therefore the
mind-in-conflict arose by itself and brought with it all
desires and every motive for seeking. 2004 edition) I had
thought that the revolutionary awareness of my true nature
would be sufficient to destroy every vestige of clinging to
the habitual influences of the mind. I thought that
knowledge would be purification enough, so that life need
only be lived under the direct assumption of what I am in

But this knowledge was not enough.
The mind in conflict arose by itself and brought with it all
desires and every motive for seeking. Yet, I was unwilling
to adapt myself to effort and strife again. It seemed that
my Ashram experience had added something vital that
fulfilled and extended the awareness that grew in me during
my crisis in seminary.

But now that experience, because it
held before the mind a kind of proof of the ultimate nature
I had sought, served as a goad to seeking, a ground for the
demand for that revelation as a continuous state.

I waited for Baba’s letter, hoping
that it would bring a new blessing and clarify my trouble.
But the weeks passed without a word, and I felt stuck with a
vision of internal contradiction that even exceeded the one
from which I had been relieved in college.

Now the mind itself, apart from any
particular content, appeared as the source of our dilemma,
and I wondered by what means the mind should pass and let me

1970 – Franklin Jones (Adi Da
Samraj) – unpublished.

The “prarabdha” karma, the remaining
movements of one who understands, is a dramatization or
activity that can take any number of forms. He witnesses all
that arises as motive and action, he enquires, and realizes
all such movements in the Heart. “Prarabdha” is not a matter
of indulging various desires and patterns That arise, but of
enquiring while free of the necessary attachment to motive
and act. “Prarabdha” is not dramatization but enquiry. where
any movement is not realized in the Heart, it is only
movement, not understanding, and enquiry follows all such

One who understands may appear in
many forms of action, for his life is ordinary. It is only
that he understands and enquires, and so all his action
becomes a creative occasion of truth. He enquires until
understanding is perfect as the Heart. Then he lives only as
truth, without drama, until the stillness takes his

Those who understand in truth see to
live a drama of many kinds. Those who live as radical
understanding are only true to understanding. Those who
understand perfectly no longer appear outside the Heart.
They are not seen in any form, but such are the Heart

 “from the spring of 1968 until
the early summer of 1969 I attempted to resolve the problems
of radical consciousness by a concentrated effort to
dissolve or disarm the ongoing, limiting effects of the
mind. For the time being, it seemed that the stream of
thought and the automatic pattern of motivations ariving
moment to moment was the primary obstacles to real
consciousness. I spent that year working in an oranization
called Scientology. My attention was drawn to every kind of
programmatic recovery of the memories and subliminal
reactions that enforce patterns of thought and behavior. But
the work I pursued these means, the more endless the content
of the mind appeared to be. And I began to realize that I
had already produced this experiment in myself during my
period of writing in California.

thus, in time, the impetus behind
this experiment revealed its own fruitlessness and the
energy behind it simply wore down and disappeared. The
result of this quieting and disinterest in the problem of
the mind was a simply, effortless return to the state of
awareness I had enjoyed at the ashram, and in the dramatic
moments of exhileration and understanding I had known in the
seminary, in college and in the natural clarity of my

One evening, while I was relaxing
after a day of concentrated work in some of the Scientology
exercies, there was a sudden, unexpected abandonment of all
my resistance to the internal operation of the “shakti”. All
the centers of my being relaxed without apparent cause,
perhaps only because there was no absorbing motive to
contract or concentrate them. All taks, all efforts, all
problematic approaches to the realization of existence
simply ended in me. They had proven themselves fruitless,
and there was no movement in me. Then the Shakti, the
natural power of conscious existence, moved freely through
me, taking the mind and all my reasons with it. this event
took place in Los Angeles in May 1969. I quickly return to
New Yoirk and arranged my separation from


Thus, when the old problems began to
arise, and I saw no immediate way to use the specific
methods Baba described or even to enforce the vision of my
particular experience, I felt moved to find a solution to
the dilemma by any means available to me. The history of my
own development led me to be open to any form of solution,
whether or not it involved the specific means or mentality
of yoga.

Knee of Listening – Chapter 12

– The Search for Release From the Mind:

The history of my experience as a
seeker is a course of experimentation in relation to the
forces of life conceived as the problem of existence on
various levels of experience. In college I dealt with truth
as an intellectual problem. In my period of writing and
self-exploitation I dealt with it as a vital and emotional
problem. With Rudi I dealt with it as a moral and psychic
problem. In Scientology I dealt with it as the problem of
the mind. With Baba I dealt with it as a spiritual problem,
the problem of super-consciousness. And when I experimented
with such things as diet, fasting and self regulation, I was
dealing with it as a physical problem.

Of course, these various researches
often over lapped and tended to become inclusive, but for
the most part each was a highly specialized, exclusive
endeavor. And each period was marked by a peculiar method.
The area pursued also determined the nature of the work. The
object created the subject, and the subject reinforced the
object. And in every case the end phenomenon was the same.
It was understanding. It was concentration and observation.
Then insight. Then enjoyment or freedom on the basis of that
insight. Finally, the recognition of understanding itself as
primary and prior to the search.

Until I had exhaustively
investigated every unique area of the “problem,” there was
no conclusive understanding. Thus, each moment of primary
understanding, such as the crisis in college or the one in
seminary, was only a temporary state. It formed only a
moment of transition prior to the next phase, the next level
of the problem. But when every aspect of life as a problem
and a search was exhausted, there was only understanding.
Then I recognized the similarity between each moment of
attainment. And I began to notice in detail the aspects of
the way of understanding itself as a radical path, prior to
every kind of seeking.

The more I continued to indulge the
yogic process the more I realized that it only and
continually drew me into the forms of seeking, either for
the Shakti, the Self, or understanding. Thus, at last I saw
that understanding was itself the only radical process, and
enquiry was its activity. Then I abandoned the meditation on
the chakras and the entire yogic process for enquiry. And
enquiry was always epitomized as contemplation in the Heart,
and the meditation of bliss in the Amrita Nadi.

I saw there was only a simple
activity and concept manifesting under the form of every
kind of remedial activity. It was always Narcissus, the
logic and activity of separation. I examined all of this
yoga, all of this seeking and performing, and all of its
results, and I asked myself: Why? Why should such activities
be engaged at all? What are the motives for meditating? And
the more radical my understanding became, the more absurd,
unnecessary and impossible it became to justify any of these

All ways showed themselves to be
founded in some problem, some aspect of life as dilemma.
There was the physical problem, the vital problem, the
problem of the mind, the problem of spirituality and
super-consciousness. There was the problem of morality,
love, communication, sex, the problem of sin, suffering, the
problem of powers, reality, truth, and the universe itself.
Even the way of Ramana Maharshi was concerned with the
problem of identity. But I saw that the problem, in any
form, always had the same structure, and the same
fundamental assumptions. Thus, I became concerned with
motivation, the principle of these various kinds of action,
belief, knowledge, etc. I saw that, since all ways were
founded in a problem, real life must be founded in the
understanding of the primary problem that is the source of
all ordinary activity. Only thus do we know and enjoy
reality, even in spite of moment to moment problem

I saw that understanding was itself
motiveless. But everything else was in fact the avoidance of
relationship, and this was their very motivation! Thus, the
longer a man lives, the more complicated, contradictory and
suffering life appears.

meditation of understanding