Transcending the Cosmic Mandala – Easy Death


Part IV:
Transcending the Cosmic Mandala


The Cosmic Mandala

a talk by Da Free John

July 11, 1982

Part I

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: There has been a great deal of discussion in recent years about near-death phenomena. Certain doctors and psychiatrists have been writing about phenomena reported by people in hospitals who go through a process in which they seem at one point to die and then are eventually resuscitated. After they are resuscitated, they report all kinds of “uncommon” experiences.

People have been having these kinds of experiences for thousands of years. As long as there have been human beings, people have been having these experiences, and not only when near death, but under many conditions. In fact, people commonly have these experiences, but there are so many taboos against communicating or even having them that people are being denied access to Ultimate Wisdom. They are being denied access to learning that which would enable them to understand and transcend the condition of embodiment.

There is presently in the world today very little awareness or understanding of the brain and what is beyond the brain. The world is being run on the basis of the most conventional presumptions of what a human being is. It is presumed that we are necessarily elemental, fleshy creatures, and that we should be socializing our consciousness and simply adapting to the elemental level of human existence. That and nothing else is supposed to be the purpose of a human life. There is a mass of very weighty taboos in the world against doing anything with our consciousness except socializing it in the context of gross physical embodiment. If we are doing anything else, we are suspected of being sick, crazy, aberrated, involved with unreality.

The most creative and wise activities that have ever involved human beings, however, are precisely those devoted to the transcendence of gross embodiment and the mere socialization of consciousness. Only when we transcend our gross embodiment and our superficial social mind and can enter the roots of our condition are we engaged in a process that is creative and ultimately liberating.

But the dogmas of this world are based on naive identification with gross embodiment, and people are expected by the machine of the State to socialize themselves and to be very happily serious about fulfilling themselves and other people in the plane of gross embodiment. The dogmas of this world demand the socialization of the being as an absolute commitment. The State and other social structures enforce that demand for socialization and put so many heavy taboos and negative consequences in the way of any other endeavor that other orientations of attention are not pursued. There is nothing inherently negative about loving and serving people and achieving a benign presence among others, but we are binding ourselves by not realizing and being committed to a process that is beyond mere socialization. Popular knowledge, furthermore, is always opposed to doing anything beyond socialization of consciousness and learning, experiencing, and fulfilling ones existence in any other context than that of a grossly manifested human individual.

There are times when religious institutions are dominant, and there are times when secular institutions are dominant. In our time, secular institutions are largely dominant, and the form of popular knowledge that is now the norm should generally be placed under the heading of what we call science.

Scientists in general are materialists, ordinary people who are fundamentally devoted to gross socialized existence. They are confronted by unusual phenomena all the time. They read the same reports that everybody else is reading about near-death phenomena and mystical and psychic phenomena. And in general, they are automatically disposed to criticize these phenomena from a materialistic point of view. They are like Pharisees. They cannot enter into the domain of such phenomena themselves, they will not permit anyone else to do so, and they are busy creating taboos against such phenomena altogether.

The reason near-death phenomena are of interest at the present time is that they have a certain air of legitimacy. These phenomena are being reported by scientists, generally by medical professionals who report the phenomena on the basis of interviews with their patients. Thus, these experiences are being observed by scientists secondhand, and they take place in a condition that is not “artificially” induced, as in the case of mystical meditation or taking a drug. Thus, since everybody is going to come near to death and die, there is an air of legitimacy about these particular kinds of reports. But the reports also remain controversial, as if there is some reason why we should not presume something authentic about them.

Not only is there something authentic about them, but the structure in which those phenomena are arising must be clearly understood. There is currently no model of existence in the hands of science, however, whereby these phenomena can be understood in ultimate terms. As yet, science has not communicated a world-view that acknowledges all existence, all of manifestation, to be arising in Consciousness. Science is still devoted to the ancient view of materialism, which conceives of consciousness as a secondary development of material existence. It does not see material existence as nothing but an electronic modification of Ultimate Being or Transcendental Consciousness. Yet it is only in that framework of Realization that phenomena of any kind can be truly recognized.

People who enter into near-death states have experiences very similar to the experiences of mystics, yogis, psychics, and people in general who are dissociated from their physical existence for any number of reasons and not merely because they have come near to death through an accident or on an operating table. People thrown into dissociation from the physical for one reason or another, as in a faint or swoon, have experiences that actually result from tuning in to the subtler origins of appearance. People having experiences of this kind report many things in common. The differences in their reports arise from the differences in their states of attention, mind, or consciousness.

People who have near-death experiences frequently talk about a particular class of phenomena, which is the feeling of separating from the body, floating upward in the room, looking downward, and seeing, hearing, and observing altogether the gross material events that are taking place in the room. This is a phenomenon called out-of-body experience, or exteriorization. It is a sign that consciousness can dissociate from physical embodiment while alive, at least temporarily.

Such out-of-body experiences are common. Millions of people have had them, and not just people on operating tables. They experience this state with varying degrees of lucidity, under different conditions, each in a different frame of mind, and with different degrees of preparation. But the experience of exteriorization is not a high experience in the scale of possible experiences. It is just an immediate dissociation from bodily consciousness, with attention still fixed in the gross plane of the body.

More elaborate reports of near-death phenomena go beyond this simple experience of exteriorization. In these more elaborate experiences, people typically report first of all feeling themselves losing all bodily consciousness and then beginning to have visual perceptions, perhaps seeing different kinds of lights. Then they will typically see a tunnel. In the tunnel, or in the approach to it, they may have experiences of meetings with people who are no longer physically embodied. At the end of the tunnel they often report seeing a white figure, and, depending on their religious background, they will say that it was Jesus, or the Virgin Mary, or any one of a number of archetypal religious figures. They will also see other worlds and places and have conversations. Eventually, they return to a sense of association with the body and are again animated through it.

Individuals who have these experiences describe differently the experiences they had on the way. What is common among all of these experiences are the basic structures that are there to be perceived, once one dissociates from perception in the physical dimension or the gross environment. Those basic patterns or structures transcend all the interpretations of mind and all the kinds of experiences to which attention may lead us in those structures, and they are basically the same structures that are otherwise reported by mystics or yogis, who, in the midst of a controlled life, are able to intentionally dissociate attention from the gross dimension in times of meditation, and who have the same kinds of experiences, including visions of lights, places, persons, archetypal figures, and deities.


Part II

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: Truly, out-of-body experiences and visions are mental phenomena. But mind is greater than we conceive mind to be from the purely physical point of view. What you are seeing at the present moment is actually a vision. You are having a vision at this moment. You know that you are seeing, but you do not generally acknowledge or presume that you are having a vision. Rather, you are identified with a physically embodied state in this gross environment, and you see and hear on that basis. Thus, you are not generally in a position to understand the nature of your own experiencing. You are subject to the dogmas of the conventional world-view, the common vision of Reality. Therefore, you tend to deny any ultimacy to your ordinary experiences, and to your extraordinary experiences as well. You tend not to become very psychic, because to be psychic is taboo. You tend not to be mystical, because to drift out of socialized, body-based attention is taboo.

Likewise, you do not even consider the psychic aspect of your gross perceptions. You tend to be bound to the usual belief that consciousness is somehow personal, independent, and reducible to matter, or merely an effect of a material condition. You grant a great deal of significance and superior force to what is external to you bodily. You grant reality to what you are seeing, and you do not significantly enter into the consideration of the process of seeing itself.

It is more or less common knowledge, at the present time, that you are not merely seeing what is external in this room. Your seeing is, in fact, an electronic apparition, developed in the nervous system of the brain. You have no direct connection to the gross object, or objects, that you are seeming to view at the present time. In other words, you are having a vision. You are not merely seeing a gross environment, but you are having a vision of a gross environment.

Likewise, your sense of being physically embodied is communicated to you as consciousness through the electronics of the nervous system. You are experiencing an apparition, an electronic sense of being identified with a gross physical body. The position in which you are experiencing perceptions is an extremely subtle position. You seem to be possessed of very gross, tangible objects of attention, but none of the objects with which you are associated are actually gross and tangible to you. They are all electronic apparitions.

Because of the tendency to be identified with the body, and also because of all the taboos associated with conventional consciousness in this world, people do not investigate, or thoroughly explore and consider, the status of their own experience in any moment. Therefore, when they have uncommon experiences, such as near-death or even mystical experiences, they interpret and modify those experiences, or only move into certain kinds of experiences, because of limiting tendencies or presumptions of mind.

Mind is not merely in the brain and less than the brain. Mind is the circumstance of consciousness in its association with objects of all kinds. Mind is universal, infinite in extent. And if we put ourselves into a position to explore the roots of experiencing, we are going to enter into a realm of mind in which we realize mind to be greater than mere daily thinking and social consciousness.

Those who take up the discipline of yogic mysticism learn in the process to become responsible for the tendencies of mind and attention that cause certain experiences to arise, or cause attention to gravitate toward one or another kind of phenomenon, or cause limiting interpretations to be superimposed on experience. Through the science of yogic mysticism, living beings can enter into a pure perception of the mechanism of our existence.

The spontaneous experiences of people in the near-death condition are really impure perceptions of the mechanism wherein experience is arising, because people are not completely responsible for attention, and therefore for mind. Likewise, in the ordinary waking state, because of the conditional limits of attention, people are engaged in an impure perception of the present phenomena of ordinary waking consciousness. They do not directly enter into an awareness of things. They are living out a conventional destiny based on un-Enlightened presumptions of born existence in this world. People do not typically enter into higher phenomena, or source mechanisms, and even if they do, whether intentionally or unintentionally, they tend to enter into them through the mechanism of irresponsible attention-attention that is habituated to a limited state of self-identification, limited associations, and mind forms that are developed in the un-Enlightened drive of the individual for consolation and survival.

But in the near-death experience, and in the death experience, which will come to everyone, attention moves directly into, through, and beyond the subtler mechanism of the brain and nervous system, and then into the Source of phenomena, of mind, and of the mechanics of attention. That Source of phenomenal appearances is a great Power. It is Energy. It is called Shakti in the Hindu tradition. It is Maya, or the binding power of creation. It is a dimension of the Ultimate Transcendental or Divine Being, in Which we inhere, and with Which we are ultimately and perfectly Identical. But because we are related to That with Which we are ultimately identified, and in Which we inhere, on the basis of an already presumed limitation of being, we do not live on the basis of Identification with the Divine or Transcendental Condition.

The situation of beings in this world is typical of beings in all worlds. We are presuming a limited condition of being, based on identification with attention in our current state of embodiment. The embodied attention is surrounded by a massive psychic form or individuated state of energy. And each of us is living out that condition in the gross plane of embodiment. We have the opportunity in the subtler range of our existence to explore higher conditions of existence and the Transcendental or Ultimate Condition of all existence. That opportunity is directly available to our consciousness in the present moment, but we are dissociated from it through the habit mechanism of attention. Likewise, in sleep, in dreams, in reveries, in near death, in death, in our life of aspiration and creativity, in all kinds of moments, we are thrown out of the circumstance to which we are tending to bind ourselves habitually, and we have the opportunity to perceive or intuit That which is Ultimate, Divine, Transcendental.

But the state of our attention, which is a mechanical gesture of consciousness within the frame of manifest possibilities, determines our experience. If an individual enters into the near-death or actual death state in a moment of spiritual maturity, having (through real self-transcending practice) become responsible for the mechanism of attention so that the body-mind is in a state of equanimity and attention is inherently free, then whatever secondary phenomena may occur, the primary phenomenon will be directly obvious.

What people are seeing in the near-death state are mind forms or tendencies of mind. The tendencies of their attention are causing them to gravitate toward apparitions in the universal realm of appearances. Thus, people do not generally report a direct awareness of the mechanism on the basis of which phenomena are arising. Rather, they describe secondary visions.


Part III

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: If attention were free to simply see the universal mechanism in which the phenomena of near-death experiences are arising, however, what would be seen is a Mandala of light, or light-energy, made of concentric circles.

When we view this Mandala of light-energy, at first a dark field appears. That dark field may show signs of patterning-golden-yellow lightning flashes, or a geometric composition of lines made of bluish yellow or silvery-gold light. Then, toward the center of this dark field, a golden-yellow field will appear. Further toward the middle of that golden-yellow circle or field is a brilliant blue field, and between the golden-yellow field and the brilliant blue field, surrounding the central blue field, is an aura of dark indigo light. If the vision continues even further, at the very center of this blue field is a white brightness. It may be visualized as a very clearly defined star with five points, or it may be just a brilliant whiteness, flashing out of the center of the blue.

If people talk about seeing down a tunnel when they are entering into the near-death state or the after-death state, generally the tunnel is the indigo field that surrounds the blue. As they enter into the blue, they seem to pass down a long tunnel made of the indigo field. Then they see into the blue field itself, and if they do not become involved in the blue field, they will see beyond its possible visionary phenomena or apparitions. The blue field itself will seem like a tunnel that moves into the distance and may even curve slightly to the right, so that the white brightness seems to be directly ahead of them, but just slightly around a curve. The light even looks as if it is shining against the left wall.

In the Tibetan Book of the Dead , it is said that after death a person will immediately enter into the clear white light. This is the white brilliance, the primary light from which all colored light comes prismatically. The curve is the sign of the crystalline prism that is manifest existence, which breaks up the whiteness into colors. Just as a rainbow is red and yellowish at its outer edge, then blue toward the center, the outer field of the Mandala is golden-yellow with reddish or pinkish colors at its periphery and blue toward the center. But at the most distant central point is the white brightness.

In death, attention moves directly into the white brightness. That white brightness is not merely objective to attention. If its State is truly Realized, it is Realized to be the Native Radiance of Transcendental Being, or the Transcendental Divine Self. Only if it is Realized as such will attention enter into the Domain of Whiteness and stay there. That is the state of Liberation or entrance into the Transcendental or Divine Domain.

But we are controlled by the mechanics of attention. We are already identified with lesser states by virtue of the habit of attention. Thus, as it is said in the Tibetan Book of the Dead , if there is no ability to remain in the white brightness or the clear white light, other apparitions will immediately appear. The Tibetan Book of the Dead describes a developing sequence of apparitions, at the end of which occurs re-embodiment in the gross plane. This text is in fact a record of the real investigations and real experiences of highly spiritualized individuals who had the capacity to enter into all of this freely. What they describe as the return from the white brightness or the clear white light to embodiment is in fact a process that is inevitable in nearly all cases.

Each of the levels of this Great Mandala represents a quality of energy or light. In each of the rings or portions of this Mandala that move out from the central whiteness are infinite numbers of possible worlds and kinds of embodiment. In this world, this gross plane in which we now exist, we are manifesting, in visionary form, a portion of the golden-yellow field of the Mandala. We are at the outskirts of the Great Mandala of the Cosmos at this present moment. There are grosser conditions of awareness, grosser possibilities, than the present one, which may be called hells, or degraded states, or states of embodiment less than human. They may be represented as forms of worlds other than the present one, as well as states in the plane of this gross world that are not necessarily apparent to vision.

We are presently existing in the outer frame of the Great Field of the Cosmic Mandala. Unless there is responsibility for attention, there will be no movement closer to the center. Unless there is Enlightenment, there will be no permanent residence in the Center, or the Source, and there is no permanence anywhere but in the Source. All possibilities, all forms of embodiment and experience in the planes of manifest light, the rainbow of blue and yellow fields of the Mandala, are temporary.

It is possible to live a long time in any plane. It is even possible to live a long time in this gross world under certain conditions of yogic transformation. It is possible to appear as an ordinary human being in this world for hundreds or thousands of years. Typically, people live just for a few years, but they could live longer. To live longer is not to Realize Enlightenment-it is simply to live longer. It is possible to realize a state of relative equanimity in this world or any other world and to live more peacefully, more happily, more pleasurably, more sensibly, more sanely. Even so, so to live itself is not to be Enlightened, nor is it a permanent condition. Sooner or later life comes to an end.

Subtler worlds exist closer to the center of the Mandala. Even in the golden-yellow ring there are subtler worlds closer to the center. In the blue field, there are all kinds of worlds. In general, to live in any of the worlds closer to the center is to live in a condition that is more benign, with greater powers and with a greater range of phenomenal possibilities than the usual life. But to live in these worlds is not to be inherently Enlightened, free, or immortal. Nor would immortality be desirable in those planes, because there is no ultimate Happiness even in the state of equanimity.

Equanimity is simply the “sattvic” or balanced condition in any realm of possibility. Equanimity is not an end in itself but simply a ground on the basis of which attention is relatively free. What you do with attention on the basis of equanimity is the means for the transcendence and transformation of destiny.


DEVOTEE: Master, you have mentioned that there were worlds for each color in the rainbow. People have said, for instance, that they have gone to green worlds.

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: Yes, every kind of possibility exists. Everything that mind can be can also be objectified as a world. You could say that this is a yellow world. But all the colors appear in it as well. It is yellow or golden-yellow by virtue of the portion of the cosmic structure out of which its particular vision is made. But in each realm, each stage in the Mandala-in the blue realm, or the yellow realm-all the colors are potential.

I mentioned to you that when the Cosmic Mandala is visualized as light, it may be seen as a dark field, and then a golden-yellow circle, and then a sort of indigo field leading to the blue center, and then at the center of the brilliant blue a white star or a white flash. This vision is evident even in our own brain mechanism. When we enter into the subtler energies or mechanics of the visual system of the brain, we may visualize this Mandala. That visualization is not the same as the viewing of the Cosmic Mandala itself. Under certain conditions of relaxation and dissociation of attention from the body, it is possible to see this Mandala by pressing the eyeballs and concentrating toward the center of the brain. What you see then is the Mandala, but it is the Mandala represented at the level of the structure of light associated with the brain and nervous system. It is a kind of personal version of it, therefore. Because the Mandala is duplicated in every fraction of all appearances, it can be visualized in the structures of our own brain. But after we pass through that limiting structure, we see the same representation of light beyond the brain, through other media of phenomenal appearance.

In vision we pass into the larger cosmic domain of this Mandala by concentrating on and passing through the Mandala represented in our own brain. People near death, or having a low-grade mystical experience, will see the Cosmic Mandala in, and limited by, the plane of the brain. It would not appear if the brain were not still active, or if we were not still bodily attached. But if we see that representation (as we do in certain mystical states and in the transition to death), if we Concentrate upon it and hold to the center, then we will also pass beyond the brain into the cosmic dimension of light outside the brain. By concentrating on this representation of the Mandala in the brain, we can move beyond the brain, even while alive, to see structures beyond the brain, in the realm of mind or psyche that is cosmic in scope.

As you concentrate on this Mandala, if you do not hold to the center, you will not see the complete Mandala. At first you may not see it at all. You may just see a dark field, or you may see in it the flashes, or lightning, or geometries. Then you begin to see the Mandala appear by degrees. You may at first see a golden, sunlike light, or you may see a silvery-bluish, moonlike light. Or you may see a reddish light, or lights of any color. They may appear as a relatively diffuse or generalized field, rather than a spot at the center. The degree of concentration and freedom of attention from the body and the diffusing mechanisms of the brain determines the degree to which you will clearly see the Mandala in total. Whether the entire Mandala or only a portion or a representation of it appears, if you do not continue to hold to the center, you will not see the rest of it, or you will not see it clearly, or you will not go to the center, but will stay in the periphery. To the degree you do not hold to the center, and to the degree you do not visualize the Mandala completely, you will tend to gravitate as attention, or as mind, into representations that develop in the different fields of the Mandala.

Thus, if attention is held in the golden-yellow field, visions will begin to appear in a golden-yellow field. Or you may pass through the tunnel of the indigo into the blue field. But then the blue field itself, instead of appearing with the white light at the center, will appear to be a room or a place at the end of the tunnel. Originally what is seen in the blue field, apart from the white light that appears in the midst of it, is a place of churning forms, a kind of bluish plastic. But other very strong, clearly defined, primary colors and shapes also appear in it. It almost seems like a clearly defined room when you first see it, but then when you clearly visualize it, you will see that this blue field contains something like distinct forms, but that they are not really separate from one another, and they are moving around. As soon as you dwell upon the blue field, the mind will cause it to turn into particularized forms. Attention will move via mind, in that particular plane of the Mandala, into places, visions, and environments. Environments may thus be entered into in the blue, or the gold, or any range or representation of this Mandala.

This is why I have recommended to people that the best discipline at the point of death, or in the midst of the death process, no matter what they have done all their lives, is to relax and to release all hold on the body and the mind and states of attention. Transcend fear through surrender, and ultimately a visual representation of the Mandala will appear. When it does, keep your attention to the center of it. Do not be satisfied with lesser representations of the Mandala such as a golden light, or a bluish light, or any other light. Keep holding to the center until the entire Mandala appears, and keep holding to the center until you move into the white field. Even though this exercise will not be sufficient for movement into the white field permanently, it will be a purifying gesture that generally will serve your transition and that is therefore positive.

In any case, attention will tend to gravitate from the white field back into lesser planes and visions. Other individuals will be seen. Helpful people will appear, and you will move into another condition quite naturally and easily. It happens in every case.

These transitions after death are not all pleasurable, however. All kinds of uncomfortable apparitions and apparently hellish circumstances may appear. Circumstances may arise that will justify fear and sorrow and anger and desires of all kinds, and you will tend to locate there for a time. The secret is to keep surrendering and holding to the center, not fixing on these visions, but recognizing them as mind, as possibilities determined by your own habit of attention. Relax that habit of attention. The more you do this, the more you will release the quality that is tending to arise, and you will minimize the stresses that may be associated with the transition.

In any case, sooner or later a relatively fixed condition will arise based on the limits of your ability to release and transcend the mechanism of attention. In that condition, whatever you may or may not remember about the Way of surrendering or transcendence, you will be embodied, fixed, related. That is precisely what has happened to you here.

If you can achieve a state of spiritual maturity and responsibility in life, then you will not experience the utter lapse from responsibility and general intuition of the Awakened Condition at death and after death. You will possess the arms in whatever condition arises after death. Likewise, you will have those arms during this lifetime if you will consider the Way and take up its practice. Your experience will more and more authenticate, verify, and justify the Way.

However, the experiences associated with spiritual practice are not significant in and of themselves. They are, in general, just objectified states of attention, or mind-forms, states of energy. We must recognize them, release them, and move beyond them.

Until attention is Free in its Source, it cannot remain in the Transcendental Condition. We are brought into that Condition at death, but we do not and cannot remain There, in spite of our belief in It and our desire to stay There, unless we have done the sadhana, or real spiritual practice, whereby we become responsible for the very habit energy of attention and Realize its Source-Condition. That Realization requires profound clarity, devotion, commitment, and practice.

Thus, it is very unusual for any living being to pass from this world, or any other world, into the Divine Domain and to remain in that Condition. People can have temporary experiences of It, however. For example, in near death and death, experiences of this Mandala of Origination can be generated or a temporary perception of this Origin may be experienced. It is always there to be glimpsed.


Part IV

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: It would be useful for any human individual and all of humanity as a cultural order to enter into the investigation of the source of patterning or experience and learn about its mechanism. Even so, this investigation is not sufficient. Through one kind of science or another, investigations into these mechanisms will be made in the future, just as such investigations have already been made, most typically on the basis of the ancient sciences of yoga and mysticism. But such science, such investigation, such learning, is not sufficient. Wisdom must be added to it-a spiritual Way of life must be added to this acquired knowledge.

The mechanism of attention is a mechanical structure, binding on consciousness, and what you know in the plane of the mind is not sufficient to enable you to transcend the mechanisms of attention. Many people, on the basis of a religious or spiritual point of view, entertain some level of presumption about such mechanisms and the after-death process, but they have not the ability to enter into a higher destiny or the Transcendental Condition of Perfect Freedom, Liberation, and Eternal Existence in the Divine Domain. Thus, humanity needs more than science. In addition to some higher or esoteric knowledge about the circumstance of our existence, humanity needs the Wisdom of Transcendental Teaching and the Wisdom of practice.

Attention is a mechanical process or superimposition on consciousness itself. It determines a disposition toward a certain kind of experience, and once you start having that experience, you begin to superimpose even on that a sense of identification with your present state. Clinging to your present condition, you begin to develop fruitless desires for fulfillment, even desires for release.

There is useful knowledge in your individual experience of uncommon states, reached via one or another kind of circumstance, and in the reports by others of such uncommon states. But in addition to useful knowledge, you must understand your condition of existence and the mechanics of your own attention. You must become devoted to a practice of life that will enable you to become responsible for attention, so that while alive, and in the midst of uncommon states, and after death, you will have the ability to locate attention in its Source and to locate your existence in the Transcendental or Divine Domain, which is the True Heaven of Existence, the very Divine State. If you do not practice in a manner that enables you to be responsible for the relocation of attention beyond its present tendencies or circumstances, then you will always tend to return to the states that are determined by the mechanical tendencies of your attention.

At death there is a movement into the clear light, and there may be temporary experiences of the clear light while you are alive as well. But you will not have the ability to remain in that Condition, or even to realize what that Condition is, except to perceive a clear brilliance and feel a sense of temporary freedom, unless you are responsible for the movement of attention. In spite of any secondary desires to remain there, you will automatically drop back from the position of the clear white light into the planes of existence, through the blue and the yellow into the gross condition again. This is absolutely inevitable. There are no two ways about it.

No vicarious means exists for escaping that inevitability. There is no mere belief in Jesus, or God, or any superior power that is sufficient to move you into the Transcendental Condition. No amount of knowing about the mechanisms of that transition, no amount of knowing about the mechanisms of the arising of experience, is sufficient to enable you to move beyond these limitations into the Transcendental Condition. Only the actual practice of the transcendence of attention, wherein its limiting tendencies are overcome and it achieves the freedom to locate itself in the Transcendental Domain, is sufficient. There is absolutely no other way to be Liberated from the binding conditions of the cosmos.

People can learn and perhaps move gradually through the stages of life that I have described, and eventually enter into the disposition of the seventh stage of life and then into the Transcendental Condition. But to presume that you will move by such a route is to place a huge obstacle before you. Moving through that process is not something you can do in a short period of time. Many lifetimes and powerful experiences intervene in the meantime to prevent you from fulfilling that aspiration. The power of the phenomena experienced outside this gross embodiment is immense.

Maya, or the binding power of the manifesting Force, is so profound that it will distract you. Your attention is already bound to an egoic or self-centered condition of existence, and you are ready to be the pawn of that Maya. It is inevitable. You will not possess the ability to cut through it. You will be immediately distracted by secondary apparitions in the plane of the Universal Mandala. They will seem to you so wonderful, or so awesome, or so terrifying, that you will become subject to your own egoic emotional turns-fear, sorrow, anger, attachment, lust, and so forth.

To casually presume you will begin with a little improvement of life and a positive aspiration and belief and hopefully awaken to the capacity for Liberation into the Transcendental Domain is simply a weak proposition. It is an excuse not to practice. If you truly understand the process, you will realize that you have no option but to deal directly with the mechanism of attention. The Way is not the piecemeal path of the progressive stages of life. It is not the path of the devotion of attention to phenomena, high or low in the scale of Nature. As soon as attention is devoted to objective manifestation, either in the form of this apparent gross realm or in the form of any subtle apparition, it is subject to the binding power of the objectified force. The objectified force of Nature, even the objective white light, has the effect of binding you until you are free of the egoic significance of attention.

Therefore, the Way itself is most direct. It is not the way of the stages, fulfilled by moving attention into subtler and subtler dimensions of objective existence. It is the direct Way of returning attention to its Source. If this Way is taken up, then the way of the stages is bypassed. In order to take it up, however, it is necessary to be prepared for this direct practice. You do not become prepared for it by taking up the practice of the stages of life. You prepare yourself by restoring equanimity to the body-mind and freeing attention from the binding concerns of the body-mind.

This is a much simpler proposition, and it forms the basis of the culture of practice in the Way that I Teach. This culture of practice is a culture of preparation relative to the first five stages of life, wherein the body-mind is restored to equanimity, and attention is freed of its binding association with the body-mind. Then, when the body-mind is thus balanced and attention freed, you can actually take up the practice of the direct submission of attention to its Source. This practice is given in its essential outline in the description of the Perfect Practice in The Liberator (Eleutherios) . The preliminary practices and preparatory disciplines of the Way, including those relative to diet, sexuality, conscious exercise, service, and meditation, are described in the general literature of my Teaching.

But you must remember that the culture of preparation is just that-a culture of preparation, in which the body-mind is restored to equanimity and attention is set free. That culture of preparation is not an end in itself. You are not supposed to be struggling with it and spending the rest of your life engaged in it. It should be entered into based on clear understanding, real “hearing” of the Teaching Argument, real self-knowledge in the midst of that consideration, and “seeing,” or conversion to the Spirit-Presence and reception of Spirit Blessing. In the midst of such real commitment, you can, in a finite period of time, enter into the practice of the submission of attention to its Source.

The total culture of preparatory discipline and the direct practice of the transcendence of attention engaged in the second stage of the Perfect Practice are a Way that bypasses the limiting concerns and orientations of the first five stages of life. The second stage of the Perfect Practice bypasses the limited aspect of the orientation of the traditional sixth stage of life. It is not merely a practice of meditation on the atman or ones self as consciousness separate from phenomena. It is a matter of devoting attention directly to its Source, not merely collapsing attention on itself, but turning attention to its Source, to the Consciousness, the Being, the Living Force in which the presumption of egoity, or self as limited attention, is transcended. The seventh stage of life is a unique culture for which you must be prepared by fulfilling the second stage of the Perfect Practice. The Way in the seventh stage of life is practiced on the basis of the Siddhi of recognition, the Power or Capacity that is inherent in the Awakened Condition.

The first stage of the Perfect Practice, which encompasses the Way of Faith and the Way of Insight as well, is a culture in which equanimity is restored to the body-mind, and attention is released from bondage to the concerns of the body-mind. It is a culture of discipline based on “hearing” or understanding as its pre-condition. The second stage of the Perfect Practice is the practice, meditation, or samadhi of immersion in the Transcendental Being, for which we have the capacity when attention is set free, on the basis of equanimity of the body-mind. Thus, free attention is the pre-condition of the second stage of the Perfect Practice. The third stage of the Perfect Practice, or the seventh stage of life, is a culture of practice based on prior Awakening or Enlightenment, which is its pre-Condition.

Thus, each of the three levels of the Perfect Practice has its unique pre-condition. It is not merely a matter of thinking about these ideas, or believing in them. You must do the practice of each of the stages. You cannot merely read my Teaching in The Liberator (Eleutherios) and presume that you are in the seventh stage of life or that you are immediately ready to do the practice of the submission of attention to its Source. You do not have the ability to do those practices until the pre-conditions are met. What you might be able to do, if you could hear the Argument, understand yourself rightly, and be committed to the Way, is to begin the practice wherein you restore equanimity to the body-mind and free attention for the second stage of the Perfect Practice.

A rare few might be able to take up the Perfect Practice in its first stage, as I have described it in The Liberator (Eleutherios) . They may actually have the unique capacity to practice in that fashion. Others will have to devote themselves to the Way of Faith or the Way of Insight until they awaken to the capacity for the second stage of the Perfect Practice.

The third stage of the Perfect Practice is based on Enlightenment. It is no longer a matter of seeking Enlightenment. Enlightenment is already the case. The Source Condition of consciousness, the Nature of Nature, the Subjective Matrix of the Objective Matrix of Nature has been Realized. The self is Realized to be Transcendental Being, Self-Radiant. That Self-Radiant Being is objectively viewed as the clear white light in the center of the Mandala. When you are already in the position of the clear white light by virtue of Realization, then you have the capacity to move attention into that Condition, transcending all the limiting conditions that are potential in this Cosmic Mandala.

Unless there is such prior Realization of the Source-Condition of attention, the mere movement of attention into phenomenal states in the Cosmic Mandala will not be sufficient for Enlightenment. Attention that has not Realized its Source-Condition is not free. It is bound to certain tendencies and habits of association. Those limiting tendencies will be reflected in superimposed limits on experience in the form of mind, and they will cause experiences to appear in one or another fashion in the Great Mandala.

We are in that Great Mandala of Infinite Energy at this very moment. But you are, by virtue of the mechanism of attention, seeing that Mandala in the form of this room, as a solid, gross, objective condition. And you are bewildered, wondering what this is all about, trying to survive, and trying to feel happy. Deep beneath all of that, you want to be released, you want to be free, you want simply to be Happy. You do not quite know how to achieve that Happiness, so you are seeking fulfillment in the plane that is conventionally available to your attention.

The Way of actual release or Liberation is the Way that I Teach. It is the Way of observing the mechanism of attention and becoming completely responsible for it. It is the Way of freeing attention from binding association with present conditions, so that it can enter into its true Condition, and not merely enter into subtler states of objective Nature.


Part V

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: The views communicated in the lesser stages of life are about the uses of attention, based on un-Enlightenment. In the mystical yogas of the fifth stage of life, Enlightenment is the goal, and the method is to devote attention to subtle objects in Nature or in the subtle lights of the Cosmic Mandala. But it is not possible to enter by those means into the white field at the root of this Mandala, because attention is already identified with a position that is less than that great white field. Attention is already habituated to a position in the periphery of the white source of lights.

It is not possible, even by purifying the associations of attention, to move into and remain in the Origin. Through means of self-denial and meditative dissociation of attention from gross perception, you can at most move attention into a subtler plane of existence. But you will not be able to move attention into its Ultimate Source-Condition by moving in the objective realm of the cosmos. It is not sufficient, therefore, to rise by mystical means into subtler perception. You must first of all Realize the Source-Condition of attention itself. Having Realized That, then you will be able to recognize phenomenal existence from the position of the Self-Radiant Being. Whatever arises will be recognizable.

This is the sadhana or practice that continues naturally in the seventh stage of life. It is not an effort of the ego but the natural process that develops as the spontaneous capacity of Enlightenment. In the seventh stage of life, therefore, the being is Awakened from its egoic position, its limited state of confinement to a certain objectified existence as a self, or a limited being. Consciousness is inherently Radiant as the Transcendental Self-Radiance of Divine Being in the seventh stage of life. The apparent individual in the seventh stage of life is Transfigured by his or her own Radiance, the Radiance of the Self, which is neither male nor female nor an egoic identity of any kind.

Therefore, in the first phase of the seventh stage of life, there is recognition of the grosser context of embodied being. In that phase of life the embodied being is Transfigured, spontaneously Free, Radiant, Blissful, Loving, and Helpful. But the seventh stage of life is not about phenomenal changes themselves. It is about existing in the Enlightened or Transcendental Condition, the Self-Radiant Condition. The fundamental or natural, spontaneous process in the seventh stage of life is to recognize whatever arises in the Transcendental Being.

In the first phase of the seventh stage of life, the grosser context of apparently embodied attention is recognized directly in every moment. It is more and more Transfigured. The activities of attention are generated spontaneously. There may even be lifetimes that would pass in this first phase of the seventh stage but, after a period of time, the seeds of even the Enlightened movement of attention into the gross plane will be released. They will have been used up. Until then, a person having become active in the first phase of the seventh stage of life might function as a Teacher in the gross plane-in this world, for instance. But, having done service in that form, the seed of even that motivation of attention is recognized and undone.

Inevitably, therefore, at some point the second phase of the seventh stage of life begins, which is the phase of Transformation. Among its signs are the development of what are called “siddhis,” or powers, such as unusual psychic and spiritual healing abilities. These siddhis might even be associated with the Work of an individual as a Teacher. But eventually the second phase, or the phase of Transformation, enters its fullest form, without significant association with activity or attention in the gross plane. This phase may also be lived out in this world, or it may be lived out in subtler worlds after death as well. It is also a stage of recognition of whatever is arising as nothing but a non-binding modification of Transcendental Being.

Eventually the seeds of the movement of attention in those subtler, transformed conditions of attention will be dissolved, and the third or ultimate phase of the seventh stage of life appears, the stage of Translation into the Radiant Domain of the Self, or That which is objectively observed as the clear white light in the center of the Mandala of the Cosmos. Thus, in the third phase of the seventh stage of life, the already Enlightened Condition, in which all conditions of attention are recognizable, movement into the Divine Domain or the clear white light is Realized as a permanent Condition. There is no possibility of moving permanently into that Radiant Domain, free of all limitations, until there is just such Enlightenment, and such perfect recognition of all phenomena.

The third stage of the Perfect Practice is the Great Way. It is the Way that I Teach. It is the Great Condition of existence. It is the spontaneous Way of Life that is lived by beings who have Awakened to the Transcendental Condition. Prior to such Awakening, we have the capacity to move as attention into the Mandala of the Cosmos, and into subtler states, but we do not have the capacity to enter permanently into the White Domain, the Transcendental Domain, that is the Subjective Source of all conditions. The lesser stages of life are not the ground of Enlightenment. But once Enlightenment is the case, then there is the capacity to move into the Transcendental Domain. It is possible to be Enlightened in any domain. In the seventh stage of life a being can appear in any domain whatsoever, in any one of the levels of this Great Mandala. But until there is Enlightenment, it is not possible to transcend all domains.

The Great Siddhi of Enlightenment is the capacity for free attention. It is the most useful ability, and it is what we develop on the basis of our primal motive toward release. That unpleasant mood which is unhappy, fearful, wanting to be released is our best advantage in the embodied condition. That desire to be released becomes the capacity of free attention when we really exploit it and devote ourselves to that motive. In that case it ceases to be merely an unpleasant disease. When we acknowledge the motive toward release and make it the mover of our lives, we transcend our seeking and our bewilderment. We become associated with real practice, real responsibility Then that motive toward release becomes the simple movement or capacity of free attention.

That is why the unpleasant mood or primal motive toward release in its neurotic form is so valuable to us-not for its own sake as a mood, which is relatively unpleasant, but because, once we really use it and reclaim it from its diseased and neurotic condition, it simply becomes free attention, or that which is inherently free, inherently released, and therefore that which inherently satisfies the motive toward release.


Part VI

MASTER DA FREE JOHN: Attention moves in a great electronic field, a three-dimensional realm of little electronic dots. Attention in itself is one dot, in one position in this moment and in the next moment in another position, not just in a two-dimensional screen, like a TV, but in a three-dimensional realm of an infinite number of electronic dots. Attention can move to any one of those spaces instantly, without moving through everything in between. Attention is just the point of awareness, keyed into a great electronic medium that has the capacity to represent itself as solid appearances, or just light, or energy appearances, or darkness, or nothingness.

Truly, the entire affair is terrible, absolutely terrible. It is a horror to contemplate. The only thing that makes it not seem horrible to us is our capacity to achieve a state of relative equanimity in our present condition. We can balance ourselves, feel relatively relaxed and enjoying something like pleasurable feeling, but we are still not immortal, Enlightened, Free, Happy. We are just intoxicated with equanimity. That is why equanimity is not an end in itself in this Way. It is simply the base for free attention. We must do something with our attention, having realized equanimity. We must not just hang around in a sattvic state, righteously enjoying our balanced condition. That condition will last only as long as conditions permit it to last in this world, and it will cease at death. All kinds of influences can interfere with our equanimity. Thus, it is not an end in itself.

It is useful to bring the body-mind into a state of equanimity. It has secondary associations that are pleasurable, but basically it is only useful. It is a condition in which our attention is free from bondage to those conditions that, in equanimity, are now in a state of balance. Thus, we must use equanimity as a base, an asana on the base of which we can enter into the contemplation and samadhi of the Condition or Source of attention.

Consciousness is just like a point, moving in this infinite, three dimensional crystal, or plane,or sphere of dots. It feels individuated, separate, and trapped. Wherever it is, it sees everything around it. Wherever you look, everything surrounds that center of looking. In the next moment, you are in this spot, or that spot. There are always the surrounding forms, motions, and energies. You are trapped as this little point in the midst of it.

We must take attention away from its preoccupation with, or bondage to, this infinite medium of dots and let it fall back into the contemplation of its own Source. When that is done most profoundly, then there is the inherent or tacit, spontaneous recognition of the Infinite Field in which this mechanical act of attention is being moved. Then whenever attention does move, wherever it moves, its condition and its objects are inherently, instantly recognizable. They are still what they are as an appearance, but they are recognizable in their Source Condition.They do not have the capacity to destroy Enlightenment, or the Realization of the Truth. But we must persist in this power of recognition. It is a kind of Yoga of Enlightenment. Unless we persist in it, attention will simply continue to arise mechanically in this great crystal or Mandala. And, Enlightened or not, there is still the environment of limitation.

Thus, in the Enlightened condition or disposition, we must exist moment to moment as this Siddhi, or Power, or Disposition, of recognition. It is this Power that will Transfigure, Transform, and Translate attention and its field into the Ultimate Domain. Therefore ultimately all of that will be replaced or Outshined by the Divine Radiance, the White Force in which it is appearing. The environment of appearances is only an apparition based on this mechanism of attention. If attention is transcended in its Source, the environment ofappearances is recognizable. If the Power of recognition is magnified, then all of these conditions will be Outshined by the Radiance that is the Source of Nature.

That is Liberation. That is Enlightenment in its ultimate sense. The Siddhi of Enlightenment guarantees that Liberation. Enlightenment itself is certainly Liberation, but it is not an end phenomenon. It is the native Condition. That native Condition is a Siddhi, a Great power, which permits us to transcend the limiting force of the Cosmic Mandala That is the esotericism of the seventh stage of life. That is the Process to which all those who respond to me are being drawn. It is That to which you are invited. But you can only participate in That if you actually live the Way, achieve equanimity and free attention, resolve attention in its Source, and then persist in the spontaneous Siddhi or Process of recognition, until there is the Outshining of conditional existence.



Death is Not Your Concern

Attention, Death and Realization

Transcending the Cosmic Mandala

Recognition is the Key to Enlightenment

Leela – Near Death