Method of The Siddhas – Talks with Franklin Jones on the spiritual teahnique of the Saviors of mankind – Adi Da Samraj – AvonLady



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THE METHOD OF THE
SIDDHAS

  The
Avon Lady


FRANKLIN: (Laughing) What is
there?

DEVOTEE: Is there free
will?

FRANKLIN: What would that
be?

DEVOTEE: I don’t think we have free
will. I think only

God has free will.

FRANKLIN: And who are we?

DEVOTEE: Part of God.

FRANKLIN: Does God have free
will?

DEVOTEE: Then what about evolution?
If there is such a

thing as evolution, we will all get
to God eventually.

FRANKLIN: You are assuming that you
are not there for

the moment.

DEVOTEE: Well, I am not aware that I
am there.

FRANKLIN: That “awareness” that you
are not there is what our work in the Ashram is all about.
What kind of free will are you concerned with? To do
what?

DEVOTEE: Well, if we have free will
and there is evolution, why do we have to work at it? Why
not let evolution take over and eventually we will all be
evolved into illuminated Masters.

FRANKLIN: Are you trying to become a
Master?

DEVOTEE: I didn’t think you could
leave this plane of existence until you were a
Master.

FRANKLIN: What is wrong with this
plane of existence?

DEVOTEE: There are other planes to
work on. Eventually all attain the state that Christ
attained, without physical bodies.

FRANKLIN: Where did you hear all of
this?

DEVOTEE: I don’t know.

FRANKLIN: You are making a lot of
assumptions to begin with. God, Masters, evolution, free
will or not, getting there, other planes. What has all of
that got to do with you?

DEVOTEE: I am somewhere, but I don’t
know where.

FRANKLIN: Well, that would seem to
be the first order of business. That is just it, isn’t it?
You are very confused, and there is suffering, apparently.
You read all these books, and you do all this thinking, all
this hoping about Christ and whomever else, about getting
there, and doing this and that to get there. That is
suffering. And it is true, why go through all this effort to
get there? I wouldn’t use the excuse that we are going to
get there anyway because of evolution, but there is
something very meaningful in this doubt about the whole
attempt to “get there.” You have discovered this feeling
that the trying to get there is very closely related to
suffering. There is suffering, and there is the trying to
get there. Those two things, I would imagine, are very real
to you: the conscious suffering involved in life, and this
whole attempt to get free of it.

This whole attempt to get free of it
is a very elaborate, very involved notion. You have to do so
many things before you “get there.” There is all of this
“stuff,” which doesn’t do one thing to your suffering. The
concept of Jesus doesn’t do anything for your suffering. The
idea of becoming like Jesus doesn’t do anything for your
suffering. The effort to become like Jesus doesn’t do
anything for your fundamental suffering. Your constant
evolution to become like Jesus doesn’t do anything for your
continuous suffering. Suffering persists as the basic
content of your consciousness. On top of that, there is all
of this seeking, wondering, thinking about how to get there,
how to get free of suffering. If you were already free of
suffering, it wouldn’t make any difference to you whether
this room appeared, or a ballroom in Vienna, or a Seventh
Plane party! The fact that suffering is gone would be the
thing that makes you happy. When suffering no longer
distracts, you see that you are already happy, that you are
happiness. From the purely practical and real point of view,
the thing that concerns you is not other planes, God, Jesus,
or getting there. Suffering is your concern, because it is
already your real experience.

DEVOTEE: It seems to me, if you look
at any realized man, you see how far you have to
go.

FRANKLIN: How do you know how far
you have to go? How do you know where he is?

DEVOTEE: Well, I’m still suffering,
so I still have a long way to go. If I am not in a perfect
state of living, if I am not

here now, then I am
separate.

FRANKLIN: What is this
suffering?

DEVOTEE: Well, there are different
forms of suffering. Not

being realized is
suffering.

FRANKLIN: What is it right now? As a
perception right

now, what is this
suffering?

DEVOTEE: Being trapped in the human
body.

FRANKLIN: What is there about that
that is suffering?

DEVOTEE: I don’t want to be in
it.

FRANKLIN: Are you in it?

DEVOTEE: Now I am, yes.

FRANKLIN: What makes you think you
are a something

that could be inside the
body?

DEVOTEE: Well, that is the way I
feel now. Since I assume

it now, it’s real now.

FRANKLIN: Your assumption makes it
real?

DEVOTEE: Yes.

FRANKLIN: Is your assumption the
thing you are suffering?

DEVOTEE: Well, you could say that,
yes.

FRANKLIN: That which is called
realization, liberation, God union, or whatever, gets
represented to people in various symbolic ways, as a path,
as something with lots of planes and worlds, colors, lights
and visions, figures and forms, methods, universes, “inside”
and “outside,” going here, going there, distance, direction,
shape. These are all conceptual communications, symbols,
pictures for the mind. Fundamentally, they exploit your
suffering, by motivating you to acquire whatever it is they
represent or hide. True spiritual life is not a motivation
to these symbols, a belief in them, nor even the acquisition
of what they represent. Spiritual life is the process in
consciousness in which there is understanding or re
cognition of suffering, the present experience.

Where there is no suffering, that
which stands out or becomes the obvious is called heaven,
nirvana, liberation, the Self, Brahman, God, God union,
Truth, Reality. When there is no dilemma, when there is no
formation of consciousness, when consciousness itself ceases
to take on form or become identical to form, this is what is
called liberation. The process that is involved is not one
of search based on suffering. Ordinarily, if you suffer, you
immediately seek to get free, and you attach yourself to all
kinds of hopeful signs. But true life or spiritual life is
the reverse of that. Ordinarily, a man is seeking, pursuing
forgetfulness from his suffering, his dilemma, his
contraction, this separation, this unconsciousness. He
pursues the absence of that in delight, enjoyment,
distraction, search for perfection, search for all kinds of
acquisitions, food, sex, money, good weather, lunch, until
this whole process begins to become uninteresting. He tries
every resort, either by contemplation or actual adventure.
He looks at every “movie” on the subject. He seeks, until
that whole movement in him, that whole reaction to his
suffering which is this search for the absence of suffering,
begins to wind down. Now he begins to realize its
hopelessness. The search begins to lose its capacity to
occupy him. It becomes less exotic, less fascinating, less
hopeful. Some quality in consciousness begins to turn away
from this whole process of seeking, this whole reaction to
his suffering, and rests in the suffering itself. He is no
longer reciting his mantra,’ stretching into holy shapes,
thinking about long ago Jesus, wanting to be in the seventh
plane, con centrating on a spot on the wall to get out of
the body. He is no longer really interested in any of that.
Even a vague disinterest in life’s pleasures may come over
him. He begins to realize that he is actually suffering,
whereas before he was completely occupied with his seeking,
and suffering wasn’t really the object of his contemplation.
It was just some vague “whatever.” The search was what
involved him. But now he begins to fall out of his search.
He begins to live this suffering. Suffering becomes his
experience, his obsession. It completely absorbs him. It
becomes the object of his meditation. His actual state
becomes absorbing. This rather than all the things to which
he attached himself to forget this, to get rid of this. Then
he begins to see his suffering, to re cognize his suffering.
He begins to see, in fact, what his suffering is. That
subtle sensation that is motivating his whole search becomes
the thing that occupies him. He can no longer do anything
about it. He sees what suffering itself is, at this moment.
He begins to see it precisely. It is a present activity. He
begins to re cognize it, to know it again in consciousness.
He sees this contraction of his own state, moment to moment,
this separation, this avoidance of relationship. He begins
to see this more and more exactly, specifically. It becomes
an overwhelming re cognition, until that portion of himself,
that quality of himself that enjoys the re cognition, that
is the intelligence of this re cognition of suffering,
becomes his intelligence, becomes the very quality of
consciousness that he lives, with which he approaches all
experience moment to moment. Then, instead of simply
suffering, he enquires of the nature of this experiencing,
moment to moment. He sees beyond this contraction that is
his suffering. And he begins to enjoy that which his chronic
activity and state always prevent.

Our suffering is our own activity.
It is something that we are doing moment to moment. It is a
completely voluntary activity. We cognize it in the form of
symptoms, which are the sense of separate existence, the
mind of endless qualities, of differentiation, and the whole
form of motion, of desire. We are always already living in
these things, but their root, the source of it all, the
thing whose form they are all reflecting, is this
contraction, this separative act, this avoid acne of
relationship, which constantly creates the form in
consciousness that we cognize as suffering. Where it is re
cognizee, known again, this activity and its symptoms cease
to be the form of consciousness. Then what is always
prevented by the usual state becomes the form of conscious
ens. Where there is unqualified relationship, where there is
no contraction, where there is no separation, no avoidance,
there is no differentiation, no necessary mind, no necessary
desire, no identification with separate movement. Then
consciousness falls into its own form, without
effort.

Symbolically, this is called knowing
or cognizant the Self. But in fact it is not possible to fix
attention on the Self. Your own nature or Reality itself
cannot become an object of attention. The actual process
involves attention and re cognition of this suffering, this
contraction. Where suffer in is thus “known,” what it
prevents is suddenly, spontaneously enjoyed, not as the
“object” of enjoyment, but as the enjoyment itself. Then,
prior to effort, motivation, or attention, there is only the
“Self,” Reality, the Heart. Where there is this re cognition
of suffering, the whole structure of experiences, concepts,
searches, strategies, that is our ordinary life, our search,
ceases to be obsessive or even particularly interesting. It
loses its significance, its capacity to qualify what always
already is. This undistracted state, this natural enjoyment
prior to the activity that is our suffering, is called
realization, Janna,2 understanding. It is the
enjoy mente of Reality, that is Reality, what is otherwise
Sam bollixed as God, the Masters, whatever. From the point
of view of the Self, the storybook Masters are of no more
significance than a hamburger at McDonnell’s. The “Masters”
are only more imagery that tends to fascinate and occupy the
seeker, the one who is already suffering. But the search and
the seeker are themselves of no real concern. They are
already secondary, because the “seeker” is only a reaction
to his own suffering. The prior action, the thing that is
really occupying and motivating every man, is suffering
itself.

Therefore, suffering is the
appropriate and spontaneous object of meditation, rather
than the artifices to which seekers attach themselves. Not
mantras, not the images of Masters, not ideas of psychic
power, of other worlds. These are not the appropriate
object. They are no solution. They are more of the same.
This room is of no concern to somebody who has never even
been to the United States. If he lives in Germany, but he
reads a lot of books about this Ashram, his reading does not
create an actual involvement with this place. It is not the
equivalent of being here. It may be playful, humorous,
enjoyable, but it is not itself equivalent to being here.
Reading about Jesus and wanting to be like Jesus is not the
equivalent of being Jesus. It never will be the equivalent
of being Jesus. “Jesus” is like the statement you made, that
you are in your body. You are suggesting Jesus to yourself,
but in fact Jesus is not here.

DEVOTEE: Isn’t the experience
here?

FRANKLIN: What is that?

DEVOTEE: It is the love.

FRANKLIN: If there is love here, why
does it have to be Jesus? What is added to this moment by
thinking that the love that is here is Jesus’ love? Why does
it have to be Jesus? Maybe it is Sam Smith, whom nobody ever
heard of! Why does it have to be Jesus? It is only because
the mind is associated with that symbol, and it consoles
itself with that symbol. Rather than penetrate our own
suffering, rather than penetrate the unlikeliness, the
unloosing quality of our own lives, we console ourselves
with the images of things we do not contain. When you
understand that, when you see what you are doing, it really
becomes impossible for you to turn yourself on with symbols.
A person can read about Jesus and think that love is his
love, but sooner or later there is going to be a real need
for love, a real dissatisfaction with no love, a penetration
of this whole plaster mind that doesn’t really do the job.
Then he will see that all of these consolations are forms of
his own mind. They are entertainment’s, distractions, for a
purpose that is always hidden. Then he will begin to observe
this motivation, this need to be consoled. And that is a
very difficult affair, because in this process of re
cognition there are no consoling images. There is nothing by
which to be consoled.

There is a “death” declared in all
the traditions. There is a “spiritual” death, a dark night,
the death of the ego and all the imagery it uses to support
itself, to console itself, to occupy itself. But consolation
is the ego. The thing Jesus recommended was re birth or
realization through spiritual death, the cross. Pick it up
and follow me, suffer the world. He didn’t recommend that
you think about his aquiline profile every day and feel good
until he comes again.

All the traditions, even those that
Westerners tend to associate with, are talking about a
crisis in consciousness, spiritual death as the event of
salvation, liberation. In that death there certainly is
death. There is no thing. There is the holding on to
everything, and the falling away of everything. When it
takes place, there is no longer any resistance, there is no
longer any one to die. When this death has occurred, what is
enjoyed from that point of view has been named love,
salvation, liberation, realization, God union. But there
must be this death, a crisis in consciousness, a crisis in
that ordinary process of surviving and seeking which is
itself responsible for the creation and maintenance of these
images that console us. All such images are forms of
seeking. We are responsible for their creation. They are
phantoms that we hold on to for reasons. The observation and
re cognition of those reasons, even their very motivation,
that sense which supports the whole process of consolation,
is spiritual life. And that is also what Jesus recommended.
He didn’t say that he was love, but God is love. Where Jesus
is not, only love is. Truth is love. Reality is love. This
is love. This love has nothing to do with images of some
cosmic super guy. Truth is love. We are love. This is
love.

DEVOTEE: What about “Jesus freaks”
and other people who go through a sudden change and become
very light and happy?

FRANKLIN: We would, of course, have
to be talking about somebody in particular to make much
sense out of it. There are all kinds of testimonials, all
kinds of salvations, and all kinds of claims made by people.
There are thousands of religious and philosophical methods
that have been tried by human beings, and all of them have a
certain amount of “success.” There are always a few
individuals who make great claims for some particular way.
Christianity is one for which we have many such
testimonials, because it has been going on for a long time,
and many, many people have tried some form of it. There have
been a number of great men and women among the Christians.
There have also been a lot of mediocre people. Some of those
mediocre people have also enjoyed a revolutionary change in
their state, for reasons that others find hard to
understand. Many other people have claimed to have gone
through the enlightenment experience with various Zen
masters, or whatever. The Christian experience is typically
“holy,” but the Zen experience is typically “ordinary.” The
Zen insight may be precipitated by a punch in the mouth, a
smack on the head with an oar, or some crazy thing, and the
next moment the “smackee” claims to be entirely transformed,
living from an entirely new point of view! So this
spontaneous turning around can take place under all kinds of
apparent circumstances. Enthusiastic claims are not
exclusive to Christianity. They are found in all religious
and spiritual traditions. The phenomenon of change is itself
the essential or common factor in all of them. And, in
general, they are hard to understand on the face of
it.

If you took a survey of all
religious and spiritual claims and tried to make sense of
them, you wouldn’t be able to isolate something that
occurred, internally or externally, that could justify the
claims. And that is precisely the point. In this turnabout,
which can appear dramatic or not, nothing is added. Its
reasons are not identifiable, because it is not a matter of
attaching something to the person’s life, externally or
internally. It is a matter of a turnabout of consciousness
itself. One of the things the great traditional teachers
have tried to communicate is the value of that turnabout,
and also something about how it actually takes place. If you
took a survey of all the apparent examples of this
turnabout, you couldn’t make sense out of it, so the
historical Masters, Gurus or Teachers have always tried to
communicate that process itself, by whatever particular
means they had available to them.

For the most part though, the
experiences to which religious people testify represent,
except in relatively few cases, an emotional and temporary
distraction, a kind of mood. It is an experience. It can be
described. It can be held onto, and it can be lost. It can
even be proclaimed. But what is called enlightenment,
liberation, or God union in its true sense, is profoundly
unlike experience. Truth is not an experience. It is not a
particular state, and it cannot be identified with a
particular way of life, a particular appearance. Seekers of
all kinds talk about dramatic events in their lives as if
they were this enlightenment of Truth. But most of these
events are forms of temporary distraction. They are only
intense experiences. And men want to hold on to such things.
They want to preserve or repeat them throughout life, and
look forward to the repetition of them in heaven or after
life. But Truth rests on no experience whatsoever. It is not
in itself an experience, it cannot be held onto, it cannot
be repeated, it cannot be looked forward to, it cannot be
lost, it cannot even be recommended. It is an absolute
obliteration of what we commonly call “life.”

What is ordinarily called salvation
is a form of satisfaction imagined by a separate, fearful
man. When a man is ‘saved,” his separate life is consoled,
distracted and involved with a path, an image, an
experience. But when there is nothing to be satisfied, when
there is no one to be satisfied, when there is no one to
give a testimony, when there is no one to meet Jesus, that
is liberation. When the ego, the separate self sense that is
our suffering, is undermined, and there is a sudden or
prolonged penetration of the structure of consciousness, of
mind, of motion, of self sense, when all of that is
undermined, penetrated, understood, re cognized, and the
very thing that it prevents is enjoyed, there is no longer
any one to survive his death. Then there is no separate one
living, there is no “one” to be in a body, there is no one
to be out of the body. Nothing has happened. There is no
separate one.

 

DEVOTEE: If we are all already
conscious, then we are not in this Ashram to become
conscious, right?

FRANKLIN: What you think is
consciousness is not consciousness itself. It is a form in
consciousness.

DEVOTEE: So we are separating
ourselves, we are identifying with the form instead of
consciousness.

FRANKLIN: But there is no method to
be recommended to go and find that consciousness. Ramana
Maharshi spoke about a method, but his way is really quite
paradoxical, humorous, and not, as it seems,
straightforward. If you remember, he was always saying: Find
out “who” it is that has experiences, that wants to seek,
that thinks it is in the body. Find out who that is. But, of
course, there is no way to find that out. There is no “one”
to find that out. It is a spontaneous event, a paradoxical
event, the most absolute of all events. It is a gift! It is
itself God, Truth, Reality!

The highest responsibility of men is
Satsang, to live in the condition of relationship, the
condition of the Heart, the company of the Self, the Guru.
The essential responsibility of the Guru is Sat sang, to
live the Heart to his friends. The highest responsibility of
those who live this Satsang is to make it available to
others. So this Ashram involves Satsang. living company, a
continuous relationship as the condition of life. It is the
one thing done. Nothing else is exchanged, no special
techniques, no thing. None of this seeking is exploited. The
essential work of those who are responsible for the Ashram
is to make Satsang available to others. Everything else is
secondary. Everything that serves the availability of
Satsang is the responsibility of this Ashram.

There is a danger in all
associations of men. Because we appear within this human
condition, this “dream” world, men tend to live from the
point of view of this condition. There is an ancient ritual
that men unconsciously desire to re enact. Wherever you see
an association of men gathered for the. purpose of spiritual
life, the same thing is tending to be created. There is an
ancient game called “Scapegoat.” There is an ancient ritual
called the ’round dance.” Men tend to encircle the center, a
book, a man, a symbol, a Guru. They tend to encircle him,
and acquire all things for this circle. The group becomes
inward directed. It becomes “occult.”

Anciently, the highest product of
this cult is the sacrifice of the one in the middle.
Traditional societies, throughout the ancient world, did
this yearly. The guy in the middle was killed, or ritually
deposed, and a new guy was, installed in the center. The
execution of Jesus is an example of this same ritual. The
addition of this ancient ritual process makes the death of
Jesus into the “sacrifice of Christ.”

In the New Testament you read how
the soldiers tortured Jesus. They played this game called
“Scapegoat.” It is a game of “man in the middle.” The
tendency of those who become involved in spiritual work is
to create a cult, a circle that ever increases its
dimensions and its content, beginning from this center,
surrounding it, ultimately destroying it. The form that the
“cult,” or spiritual association of men, tends to take is
the same form that men are living individually. It is self
or ego in the middle. It is this avoidance of relationship,
this contraction, which creates the sense of mind, the
endless habits of desire. It is what we call “life.” A man
begins to sense this separate existence to be his very
nature, and spends his life creating a circle of content or
acquisition all around it. He encloses all other beings he
can acquire, all of the things he can acquire, all of the
states and thoughts he can acquire, all the emblems,
symbols, experiences, sensations. When he begins to involve
himself in some spiritual association, or, for that matter,
any association outside his own subjectivity, he tends again
to create that same circle about a center.

The cult is a re enactment of the
ego. The ultimate fate of every cult is the same as that of
the ego, the separate and separative self. It is the
sacrificial destruction of the center, the death of the one
in the middle. But true Satsang is an anti cultic or non
cultic process. It is not inward directed. It doesn’t tend
to become a cult in the sense I have described. It is
inclusive, but the “center” is not its motive. In Satsang
the center is always already undermined as a center, as a
separate and separative entity. The “center” of Satsang is
conscious ness itself. It is the light, the very force of
unquaiified consciousness. It is communicated directly to a
man’s life, in relationship, so that he no longer needs to
turn inward, to create survival for the center. Instead, he
turns toward function, freely, the light already assumed. So
Satsang, the company of Truth, tends to serve life, to move
into life, to contact life in relationship, not to acquire
life.

My intention with men is not to
absorb them into a society or spiritual gang with which they
are to become symbolically and ritually preoccupied. I would
bring them the force of consciousness, whereby they can
become capable of life. I demand the functional capacity of
men. I do not require it to be eliminated, resisted, or
escaped through some phony meditative impulse. I require the
functions of men to live. I do not require the separation
from vital life, vital enjoyment, existence in the form of
life. I require these functions to be known, to be
understood, to be lived from the point of view of
Truth.

Such is the genuine effect of
Satsang, the accompanying “mood” of Satsang. It is one of
capacity for relationship, of no search, no dilemma. It is
not the tendency to some “other” state. It is the obviation
of the dilemma within the present state, the undermining of
it. One who understands and whose life is lived as the
condition of Satsang, is not necessarily, in his appearance,
different from any other man. He hasn’t necessarily acquired
some psychic abilities, visionary abilities, whatever.
Understanding is not itself the acquisition of some
particular experience. He might, by reason of his
tendencies, experience the arising of extra ordinary
abilities, but not necessarily. He becomes, like the Guru,
one who is simply awake within the dream.

Satsang is a natural process in
which the contraction that is our suffering is operated upon
by the Guru. The disciple is preoccupied with his search,
but all the while the Guru is acting upon his fundamental,
motivating dilemma and strategy. And there are two
tendencies by which the Guru is always being confronted by
his disciple. One is the tendency to seek rather than to
enjoy the condition of Satsang. And the other is the
tendency to create this contracting circle, this cult, this
ritual of fascination and unconsciousness. The Guru has only
one resort in either case. It is Satsang, his simple
relationship to his friends.

DEVOTEE: Are all awakened men
Gurus?

FRANKLIN: No. Guru is not a kind of
status. It is a specific function. There are some who
awaken, but who simply live, without becoming active as the
function of Guru. There are others who awaken and do in fact
perform that function. Truth, not the “role” of Guru, is the
enjoyment of all who are awake.

DEVOTEE: It’s hard to figure out
what I have read. One “realized” man wiped out his father,
another killed off his whole family. How can such phenomena
be explained?

FRANKLIN: There is a point where
one’s search becomes inappropriate. This is that point. All
of the Scriptures a person reads, all of the remarks and
experiences and traditions come to an end when the import of
those Scriptures ceases to be academic. In the presence of
the Heart, seeking is inappropriate.

It makes no difference what those
sentences meant. That’s not the point. The universe devours
billions upon billions of entities every second. If we were
to judge by actions those to whom enlightenment should go
the universe itself would be the last. Only the righteous
fools within it would be enlightened, but the universe would
have to wait until the very end on account of its crimes. It
is not any kind of significance, any appearance, any
suggestion, any implication of what we see that is the
Truth. The traditions say that you can’t find the Guru in
his actions. In other words, it is not by watching how
various people act and speak that you find the Guru. He is
always a paradox. His action is a paradox, like the universe
itself.

The old texts that talk about
realized beings killing others are allegories for spiritual
transformations within a man. One of the classic statements
of Vedanta is that once a man has realized the Self he could
slay a hrahmin and it would not be a sin for him. It
wouldn’t affect him. All of these statements are simply
suggesting or somehow trying to imply the freedom of the
Jnani, the Self realized man. So it is that Self, that
Reality to which these Scriptures are trying to turn you. If
you miss the point, and the Self doesn’t become your
direction after reading such Scriptures, you are stuck with
something you can’t understand. You are stuck with something
that seems to say what can’t be true. So all of these old
Scriptures are loaded. There are always two sides. But they
only have one purpose, which is to create interest in the
Truth, in realization. After the interest has been created,
the Scriptures have served their purpose. They just serve to
move you along and entertain you for a period of time until
this whole possibility becomes significant enough that a
crisis, a breakdown in your ordinary functioning begins to
take place. And, hopefully, when this crisis begins, you
will also find yourself in the company of a truly Self
realized man, one who lives as the Self. When that contact
is made, all of these suggestive sentences become obsolete.
They lose their function at the point where that meeting
takes place. The more you have accumulated before that
moment, the more there is that becomes obsolete. And so also
the more resistance there is.

Truly, the Self is mad. The Self is
unlearned. The appropriate foundation of human life is not
an entity, a separate self sense, an ego, even a soul. Such
is not the appropriate foundation for human life. The
appropriate foundation for human life is the Heart, the
Self. It is utterly mindless, utterly free, uncontained,
unqualified. But, paradoxically, when the Heart is lived the
human being becomes functional, usable, alive, moved. Such a
one makes no complicated use of the things an ordinary man
uses to survive. Like a child, he moves by delight. He is a
man of pleasure, of enjoyment. Like a madman, he learns
nothing from life. He doesn’t helieve what he sees. He
doesn’t take it to have any limiting significance. He throws
away all the things that seem to everyone so profound, so
serious. He attributes nothing to them. So the realized man
is like a madman and a child. But apart from actual
realization, radical understanding, what I have just said is
a form of entertainment. It doesn’t affect your impending
death. And your death is what interests the Guru.

DEVOTEE: What about Lord
Yama?

FRANKLIN: Lord Yama, the storybook
Lord of Death? He barely enters into it! He is only a symbol
in consciousness. As if death were some entity, some being
or other. But your death is your concern. It is not the
concern of any “other.” That “other” is your Self. So it is
only the true Guru who is very interested in your death.
Your death, not all the things you call your life. And he is
very interested in bringing it about very quickly. He
doesn’t want a long engagement! He wants a sudden “death”
for everyone.

DEVOTEE: What if a guy’s heart,
breath and mind were suspended for twenty minutes. He’d be
free then, wouldn’t he?

FRANKLIN: It depends on what has
occurred during those twenty minutes. Many people have been
in a coma for months, or even years, but they didn’t wake up
any less immune to death, or any more intelligent. The
“death” I am talking about is not the death of which you
suspect yourself. It is not simply that physical, that vital
event. The death I am talking about is the turnabout, the
dissolution of the principle by which you live, the
fundamental activity that you are animating, dramatizing,
considering to be yourself, living to others, your state. It
is that death which is significant.

DEVOTEE: Sir, would you like to
compare that with, say, the physical act of
suicide.

FRANKLIN: The physical act of
suicide is an impairment. It is an obstruction. It takes
away from you the functions you have available for
intelligence. So the mere act of suicide is not it, any more
than extreme fasting, self immolation, deprivation of the
senses, exclusive internal concentration. None of these
psycho physical events is the crisis of Truth. They are all
experiences. They are symbolic at best. They don’t achieve
the thing that is needed.

We have talked about traditional
yogic methods of seeking Self realization or God union. They
are something like sitting in a room, breathing heavily, and
looking at erotic pictures. You can generate something that
is like passion, but you are never going to make love! It
never becomes that. Just so, you can sit and breathe
methodically, turning inward, contemplating Divine images or
God ideas, but it is never going to become God union. God
has never entered into it. It is a very hopeful practice at
best. There is no God union until God is there to be unioned
with. As a lover depends on his loved one, the God seeker
depends on the living Presence of God before there can be
any God union. And when God appears you are not going to
have to do your spiritual breathing! It will all be very
obvious. You won’t have to think about what is necessary to
be done to become one with God. It is only the absence of
God, the suffering, the ignorant condition that gets you
involved in all of this seeking. It is only where God is
already not that all of these practices begin.

DEVOTEE: Well, should we just wait
it out until God comes then? Like waiting for God or
something?

FRANKLIN: This deliberate waiting is
also another form of that same seeking. Fortunately, or
unfortunately, the search goes on in spite of you until this
connection is made. Everything you do is that search until
God, the Self, the Heart enters into the picture, as a
reality, in relationship.

DEVOTEE: If consciousness is divided
between waking, dreaming and deep sleep, then how do we get
behind these three to find the Self?

FRANKLIN: That has been the
mysterious approach of the Advaita Vedanta, of jnana yoga
and other traditions of spiritual practice. They build up
this conceptual dilemma, and then they try to solve it. So
the Self is pictured as an alternative to waking, dreaming
and sleeping. The Self is pictured or proposed as a
something else, another state that is hidden beneath the
usual three. It is hardly in the waking state, barely in the
dreaming state, only implied in the sleeping state. Thus, in
order to get underneath all of this it appears that you must
go through a subtle process of internalization, which is
traditional meditation. For a while you try to go inward.
Then you open your eyes again, and at the same time you are
looking at this, the appearing worId, you are trying to
concentrate on an internal one that is not really in this
one. So there is all this “interior” and “out here” at the
same time. You go crazy after a while.

The Hindu formula is not complete as
spoken. The central formula of the ancients as stated by the
Hindus is: the jivatman (the individual soul) and the
Paramatman (the Great Soul, the Universal Self) are one.
Therefore, seekers in that tradition are led into a process
of interiorization and union. The formula of Buddhism, the
classical tradition, might well be added to this. It is
stated in the form: nirvana and samsara are the same. In
other words, the Great Self, the unqualified Reality, is not
different from this, the condition al appearance, the world.
When taken together these two reflect something in a
symbolic way of the nature of Reality. This, the entire
force and form, the intensity arising as this moment, is the
Self. It is not that there is some hidden Being underneath
the three states that is the Self and all of this is just
sort of hanging around on it. There is no distinction
whatsoever in consciousness. There is always already no
dilemma. There is no inwardness that is equal to the Truth.
There is no special subjectivity that is the Truth itself.
There is no special objectivity that is the Truth itself.
But the sub jective and the objective are already the very
thing, the very Truth.

Even so, there is a dilemma
meanwhile. There is suffering, non comprehension as that
simplicity. And since there is suffering, men are motivated
to recover the sublimity they have been suggesting to
themselves and which some men have claimed to have enjoyed.
But it is only when the whole process of interior and
exterior, all these movements, all these searches, all these
experiences, when all of that has failed, then suffering
itself becomes the point, becomes the experience, rather
than all of the seeking that is only a reaction to it. Then
a man falls into his suffering, dies from his suffering,
becomes conscious as his suffering, understands his
suffering, and sees what is already the case. So all the
seeking is just a prolongation of the suffering.

DEVOTEE: When the realized man has
turned the switch off, how does he get to functioning back
in this world?

FRANKLIN: The Self is not behind all
of this. The Self is this without a doubt. There is no
separation whatsoever. Therefore, Self realization is
perfectly compatible with human existence. The truly Self
realized man is no longer suffering, no longer inward, no
longer outward. The dilemma is gone. He sees the obvious, he
enjoys the obvious, and all the human functions become
functions in fact, usable, realizable, and enjoyable. You
are dealing with images. These images imply things about
your present state that are not quite true. They are
metaphors: the idea of the “switch,” the idea of the fourth
state beyond the three states. Truth has been represented in
the form of images to interest you in realization, to
suggest to you what is not realization. But realization is
of another kind than this interest, this fascination
developed by means of the texts. Thus, all of the traditions
agree that the best thing a man can do is spend his time in
Satsang, in the company of the realized man, the Guru. That
is meditation. That is the real condition. That is
realization. That is perfect enjoyment.

DEVOTEE: How can that affect you?
Just sitting with such a person?

FRANKLIN: A man tends to take on the
qualities of the things he spends his time with. If you
watch a television program or a movie you go through a
distracting drama. Then, all of a sudden, a commercial! It
breaks that whole trance. So you feel disturbed. If you
spend your evening in a “topless bottomless” bar, another
game attracts you. If you take drugs, there is that number.
If you get amused tonight, smoking cigarettes until dawn,
there is that whole form of mind and life. Perhaps you go on
a picnic, fishing, or to church on Sunday. There are all
these dramas being played. Now it happens that in the
ordinary drama in all of its millions of forms and in all
the millions of people living it there is a contraction.
Every drama is a play of separation, of suffering, of
seeking. The contraction is its subtlest element, its
foundation. So that when you become involved with all
ordinary things, regardless of what they appear to be at
this moment, they carry with them the subtle implication of
your suffering. Now there is this pleasure, now this, now
this entertainment, and now this one. The appearance varies
but it is always the same, the same implication, the same
thing by association is being reinforced in consciousness.
The man of understanding, the Guru, doesn’t appear to be any
different, essentially any different. There is no standout
on his la pel thing obviousness about it. But he lives as
the Self. Thus, of all your associations, it is this company
that does not support the contraction. It does not support
it. That is what is unique about it. You continue to attempt
to live this contraction in various ways, you continue to be
entertained, you continue to seek. You even continue to
expect what it looks like you should expect from that
association. But the Guru does not support the contraction,
the very suffering.

The Guru is like an elevator. He’s
in the hotel lobby with a nice marble casement and a needle
above pointing to the numbers of floors. It looks perfectly
stable. You know it has been there for a while. You dare to
walk up to it. You see buttons on the wall. The doors open.
You look inside. It is nicely decorated. A couple of people
nicely dressed come out to go to the cocktail lounge. So you
step in. You expect to rise, as all the traditions say. But
you fall right through the bottom of the floor! He doesn’t
support it, but he appears ordinary. His activity is non
support in endless subtle forms.

The effect of this non support is
that the quality of contraction in you begins to become self
conscious. The search winds down, the suffering becomes self
conscious, and, intuitively, you become alive within it.
This quality of contraction simply begins to get flabby and
fall apart. You begin to re cognize it, to know it again.
Therefore, in that living association or relationship with
the Guru the Self is lived to you, whereas in all other
conditions it is this contraction, the avoidance of
relationship that is lived to you.

DEVOTEE: Would you describe some of
the levels on which the Guru operates?

FRANKLIN: There is no particular
point in describing them. The most it would do is make you
self conscious and wary. On every level that awareness is
possible the Heart is active. The important thing is that
even though men are suffering they intuitively recognize the
living Self. What they will do about that is another matter.
But the recognition is there in some intuitive form. Rather
than any other kind of informa tion, it is upon that
recognition that disciples and devotees must depend, both
for the knowing whether a man is Guru and for the knowing
whether he himself wants to be involved in that kind of
relationship. Many have had enough, so that once they see
the Guru they stay to live with the Guru. Through that
process they begin to see how the Guni, the living Heart,
operates. Others come and they resist immediately. They
defend their state, and so they leave.

The concern of the disciple is the
relationship to his Guru, which is Satsang. Sitting with his
Guru is his meditation. It contains all of the elements of
meditation: sitting in relationship with the Self,
consciously sitting in relationship with the Self or God
Nature. What else could meditation be? So it is simply
sitting or living, aware of that. And it becomes more
profound, more subtle. It becomes intelligence. It becomes
self enquiry. It perhaps becomes something form al looking
to some degree, appearing as what we ordinarily think to be
meditation. But that sitting, that relationship to the Guru,
Satsang, sitting, living it from day to day, living the
conditions this relationship creates for you, that is
spiritual life. It is meditation, it is spiritual effort,
sadhana. And, on top of that, there is entertainment,
because life is an entertainment. There is as much
entertainment in that relationship as any other. There is a
humor to it, but the entertainment is utterly enjoyable.
That relationship is humor, it is obvious, because the most
fundamental enjoyment is always taking place.

Until a man recognizes the Heart
alive and lives that relationship, everything he does is a
form of his search. Every action reinforces his suffering.
It is not it. There must be a radically new life, a
radically new presence, a radically new communication. The
Heart itself must appear. Otherwise the seeker is like the
guy with the girlie magazine in his room. He is not going to
make it. And all of the “spiritual” books have no more
ultimate significance than pornography for such a one. All
of the seeker’s “spiritual reading” is perhaps a little
subtler than erotica, but the same motivation is behind it.
The same suffering is there. It is a form of entertainment.
On different days there are different kinds of
entertainment. Some days you prefer girlie magazines, other
days.you prefer the Rhagavad Gita.9 But it is the same guy,
the same search, the same dilemma. This is why certain Zen
masters burned the traditional sculptured images of the
Buddha. The same thing must be done for the Scriptures. It
is not necessary to go out and burn them in the street, but
there must be this understanding of their significance in
relation to the Heart, the true spiritual life. The
intelligence of the Heart is a genius, a fire, not a little
pipe smoking philosopher. The same power that wields this
universe and devours the billions of beings is the Heart.
One who lives as the Heart can read these Scriptures and use
them, consume them, destroy them, play with them, do
whatever he likes with them. Such a confrontation with the
Scriptures is alive, but the seeker’s confrontation with the
Scriptures is mediocre. It doesn’t amount to God union. It
is only one that is already realized who reads such things
and comprehends them.

For the man who does not understand
the books are simply ways of gaining his interest, moving
him toward a moment when he will seriously begin. And even
then there are many pit falls. The guy puts down the girlie
magazine, gets dressed, and goes out to a pornographic movie
house! This instead of going out to find himself in human
company, in relationship! So it takes more than just putting
down the books. There are lots of “gurus” around, lots of
movie houses where you go in for a zapping. They entertain
you, they take a couple of bucks, they do a number for you.
It’s in sound and color, two full hours! And what does it
come down to? They tell you to go home and do it yourself!
You were home trying to do it yourself all night! But now
they give you a “Harry Umpty Ump” mantra. You take it on
home, and you clean up the corner of your bedroom! You throw
away all the girlie magazines, or at least you keep them in
the bathroom under the hamper. You clean up a corner of the
room, and you open up the blinds so that the sun comes in on
it real nice. Then you get up at dawn, and you
say:

“Harry Umpty Ump, Harry Umpty
Ump!”

Such a man is in the same condition
that he was the night before, even less intelligent. He has
taken on some path or other, professionalized his search.
The night before he was just a guy, just a slob. But now he
is a “YOGI!” He puts on the outfit, wears the beads on his
hand, starts collecting money for his trip to India next
year. He does this number for however long it takes him to
get sick of all that. And after that he says the hell with
it. He messes up his room again. He throws away his robe and
beads. He takes the girlie magazines back in the bedroom.
But he really hasn’t got it any more. Besides, he is
probably fifty years old by now. So he is really The Avon
Lady with the living condition. And it precedes all of this
mentality.

 


Method of Siddhas Table of
Contents

Invocation
(Narayana Sooktam)

Part One:

Preface:
The Method of the Siddhas
:

1. Understanding

2. The
Avon Lady

3. Money,
Food, and Sex

4. Vital
Shock

5. Walking
the Dog

6. The
Gorilla Sermon

7. Relationship
and Association

8. Meditation
and Satsang

9. One-Pointedness

10. The
Path of the Great Form

11. Phases

12. No
One Survives Beyond That Moment

Part Two:

The
Gospel of the Siddhas