REVULSION TOWARD ALL POSSIBILITY
IS THE BEGINNING OF SPIRITUAL LIFE
A TALK GIVEN BY BUBBA FREE JOHN
TO A PRIVATE GATHERING IN SAN FRANCISCO, ON THE EVE OF THE NEW YEAR, DECEMBER 31,1976
There is no end to the possible suffering in this dimension and there is absolutely no end to the delusions of human beings. So spiritual life is not a way of fulfilling this life in any conventional sense. It rests upon the most absolute revulsion to the consequences of every moment, of every breath. This earth is one of the hells, and you, like all human beings, are possessed by worldliness, by the point of view of your birth, your experiencing, the illusion of your separate power and pleasure. My wrestling with people has come to an end, but I want it to be very clear between you and me what I have represented to you in my play with you over the last five or more years. Because some of you, I think, believe somehow or other that in your self-possession you represent spiritual life or this Teaching, whereas in fact you represent a degradation of it and an illusion.
I was not born into a traditional religious culture. I have no conventional society to which I belong, of which I am a monk or a representative. I have appeared in a society in which there is no spiritual tradition, no way of dealing with an individual like me, no way of dealing with a process of this kind, no way of recognizing it and truly making use of it.
When I began to take up my teaching work, I clearly understood that I was going to have to bury myself in the world in order to awaken devotees. If there were to be devotees ultimately, I would have to pass through the lower, ordinary life with them, and make lessons in that play with them, make lessons out of all the possibilities of conventional fulfillment. That conventional fulfillment includes everything from typical life pleasures to conventional, so-called spiritual and psychic enjoyment. So all of my work has been a process of engaging in play with people on the basis of conventional possibility, living it, exploiting it, allowing it to show itself altogether as experience, as consequence, in order ultimately that you might enjoy that revulsion to the destiny of this birth that would enable you to take up the spiritual process truly.
There is no spiritual culture here, practically no culture whatsoever. Look at the street you came up out of tonight. That is where you all come from, and that is where I teach. Not in order to recommend all of that bullshit, all of that terror and disease and delusion and stupidity and obsession and craving and torment, but to live with people in such a way that they might enjoy a revulsion to all possibility in itself, all fulfillment, high or low, that is latent in the tendencies of this birth. And so, at various stages in my play with individuals, you have seen me live and work in every possible way. At one or another time, everything from the most exotic psychic and conventional experience to the most ordinary fulfillment of social life was, in one or another way, represented, communicated, lived among you, and never at all for the sake of those things in themselves.
You have not understood me if that is what you thought I was up to. These experiences are not the point, they are not Truth. Every way of life that you pursue on the basis of experience, high or low, making experience the principle of your future, is ordinary destiny, the usual life leading to death. It is not spiritual in any sense whatsoever, whether its content is psychic and more subtle or very gross. The lessons of your life with me should be very clear to you in your own body-mind. And yet I do not think they are very clear to all of you, because I see so many of you intending to persist, righteously persisting, in a way of life that has nothing whatever to do with spirituality.
Everything is passing, all this flesh, all this mind. There is no freedom from rebirth and illusion unless while alive you are literally existing in another dimension. Literally! Such an existence is not a matter of philosophy, of feeling good, of all the conventional horseshit that people put together. You may return to this human kind of birth after your next death, if you are lucky, but you will return to it without any recollection, without any more capacity than you now enjoy, driven as you are now, confused, obsessed, without the least distance in you from this arising here, bound to it, craving on the basis of it, having no capacity whatsoever to be distinguished from this body-mind. This will be true of you unless while alive you literally begin to exist in another condition, in another “place.” Then, at death, and also while alive, you may go there and not come back here.
But, you see, in Truth it is not a matter of just being able to go to some dimension or other. There are countless dimensions above and below this! The Truth of the matter is to come to rest in God, not in this ego-soul, the separate one that is your destiny until the heart is broken. Other worlds have no significance whatsoever. They are equally tormenting after you have been there a few moments! There is a great struggle in every being that comes into contact with the Divine demand, because the Divine does not fulfill this life. The Divine Power draws you out of this life, draws attention out of it, reduces the mind to nothing, frees you of the illusion of being identical to this body, not just philosophically, but literally. The Law is sacrifice. If you do not fulfill it, you will become a sacrifice in any case, grudgingly, unconsciously. You will be eaten.
Until the Divine Power, Grace, and Demand is accepted, you will not fulfill the Law. You will not become a sacrifice of the whole body mind. Until this heart comes to rest, there is only contraction, this separate and separative consciousness, whose mind is separative, obsessive, bewildered, pursuing fulfillment on the basis of what is apparently possible in the midst of this puny limitation we wake up to each day. To take up a Divine life, a spiritual life, you must yield that principle of separation, but not just philosophically and not through conventional willfulness. Your yielding must be a real process, and it must represent real adaptation in you.
We spent a good deal of time over the last months in the midst of the consideration of Divine Ignorance. And some imagine that a little ordinary consideration and thinking – psychology means that they get the right to call themselves enlightened and to think of themselves in all kinds of glamorous ways. But this consideration must become commitment in you. The spiritual or sacrificial process of devotion is what follows on the basis of it, not endless claims on the part of deluded people that they are full of spirituality. A God-life, the fulfillment of the Law or sacrifice, is what properly proceeds from this Ignorance, not a stupid, obsessed life, not a life completely given over to all the conventional illusions of gross and subtle desiring! Who could imagine the usual life to be Spiritual or Divine? A human being could! Only a human being-no dog would do it. It is true! As a human being, in your divisions, you can have the sense of identification with the vital, but you cannot be the vital simply. You are more than that. So if you go about trying to be the animal, even the animal erect, you will live a life of conflict, of illusion and mystery. The clarity in your eyes will disappear. Whereas a dog is simply the vital. He doesn’t go through any mental process of identifying with the vital. He is simply that, and by fulfilling his destiny, the motion in which he is born, his eyes may remain clear. If the principle of desiring, of vitality, of the navel, overwhelms you, though, you see what happens. You become subhuman, and sub-humans do not know what it is either, you know! But they have not become fitted to Divine Ignorance. If they had, they would begin to become human, and then, having become human, they would begin to become spiritual, and, having become spiritual, they would begin to become Divine, not by becoming glorified themselves, but by having become absorbed in that Divinity-which, if you could only glimpse it, would put fear into you!
There is no God responsible for your bondage. You are entangled because of your own inclination, and, having appeared here mysteriously, you become more and more inclined, by reaction, toward what is simply possible here. Everything here passes. And when your appearance here is finally done, after you have gone through a wretched end of life, when it is finally all gone, then what is gained? Only the right to another mysterious repetition, as this life is! None of you can account for your presence here.
You cannot realize Real God. You can only be led into that Realization. And if you resist it, then of course it does not take place. And such Realization is difficult, I grant you that. It is immensely difficult, It requires tremendous intelligence, tremendous discipline, tremendous feeling, to pass out of this limitation, this philosophy, this birth. But there is help for it-there is Grace. And you must give up your whole life for it! Whatever you do not give up, keeps you here, and until you have given up everything, here is what you see.
You should also understand that I am not here to fight with you for any cause whatsoever. Whatever you choose, you are completely free to choose, and that is all there is to that. All I represent here is an offering. I know how difficult it is to accept it and to live it. And I know exactly what I am doing and what I have to do in the case of every person. I have known exactly what to do with people who come in the condition that you all do, without the purification or clarity that a mature individual would represent in a spiritual culture. The karmas that must be relieved in the case of individuals who come in this condition are of the grossest and most resistive kind. So they are not just plucked off like a pimple on your cheek. It is difficult for you and for me, and it has always been difficult.
My relationship to individuals is of a spiritual kind. It works on the level of the super-physics of things. It is not a worldly matter. It is not founded in this or any other world. It is not conventional, it is not something within your experience altogether. On the other hand, a true relationship with me is not arbitrarily realized by everyone who happens to come in the door, or who makes some ordinary gesture toward the idea of taking up this Way of life. I can serve you with the Teaching through literature and by providing instructive educational occasions for you somehow, if you will support that possibility, but you must fulfill the Teaching, you must live it. You must take on that discipline, you must live it altogether, this meditation must become true, this adaptation, this transformation of the body-being, this repolarization of it altogether, must be literally true of you. The true spiritual process is not just mental stuff. It is cellular, molecular, and requires great human character to perform. And if you will live it, then a spiritual relationship with me, personally, directly, in the transcendental form in which it exists, becomes possible. Until then, you should just consider the Teaching if you are interested in it.
A spiritual relationship with me is not of a conventional or nominal kind. It depends on sacrifice, the fulfillment of the Law. The sacrifice must be true of you and it must be true of me. And. no one, just because he likes something about me, somehow or other, on that account has a relationship with me, has any spiritual connection with me whatsoever. I am not a whore. I know my spiritual relations. They are entirely my responsibility. And if they are violated, if they do not fulfill the Law, then that is the end of the matter. A true relationship to me does not just float around in the imaginations of people. It depends on a real human process, mutually acknowledged, mutually experienced, expressed at the level of life. If the spiritual and devotional practice is not true of you, then the sacrifice is not true, and my response is not forthcoming,
This possibility for spiritual life is available to you all. It is available to all beings who will consider it. Apart from such a process, what this life can amount to is a torment, it seems to me. But until it is clear to you that only the Divine process avails, spiritual life cannot be true of you, it cannot begin. We are not possessed of spirituality in our giddy feelings. Spirituality is sacrifice. It is not our content that is spiritual, whatever the experience.
It is said in some of the Scriptures that the greatest of all sins is to imagine your Spiritual Master is a mere human being, just as he or she appears to be while sitting in front of you. You know what you know and experience about yourself when you begin to think the Spiritual Master is of the same kind, altogether the same. You begin to become contemptuous and claim equality. Whereas there is no thing and no one to be equal to. The spiritual process working through such an individual is without the separate one, and only when approached properly, when prepared for truly, is the Divine function of the Spiritual Master brought into your life. The Spiritual Master in human form :is not engaged in a conventional human game, and he cannot be imitated. What must occur in the case of an individual who functions in that way for others is an abomination to anyone else. It is terrifying from the ego’s point of view. And for this reason such an individual is usually only rejected for the most part, made to suffer at the hands of devotees themselves, even if unwittingly. He is in general found unacceptable. He is always wrestled with because of what he implies for your own life. What such an individual represents as a demand of you is difficult for you to fulfill, and what such an individual represents as Realization requires an undoing in you that is immense, not a thing you can do willfully, not a thing you can fulfill
as you would some ordinary occupation in life. For this reason such individuals often avoid as much as possible becoming part of the worldly appearance of things. They avoid becoming too visible and too well surrounded with ordinary kinds of attention. In this way, the process that is possible through their appearance may actually be lived with the relative few who are seriously inclined toward it.
The human birth, on the basis of its native desiring, does not fulfill itself. It becomes confused and begins to create a destiny which at some point becomes terrifying and unacceptable. But here and there some individual appears who has broken through all that ancient adaptation. Whenever such a one appears, others merely born have great advantage. But they only have great advantage if they make right use of such a one, by fulfilling the Law in his company.
There are all kinds of ways of using such a person, or the communications around such a person. Most of the ways of using such a person are simply ways of exploiting the birth potential itself. There is only one way that is true use of such an individual, and that is to fulfill the Law, which is sacrifice, in relationship to him specifically,and to have it fulfilled, in turn, relative to you. Then such a relationship represents a literal advantage, because it brings the engine of super-physics, in the Divine rather than the cosmic sense, into the play of your ordinary life.
The human individual who serves others in that way is simply open, broken hearted. Your relationship with him is your relationship with Real God. And it is not a matter of constant human face to face contact with such a one. In general, the more there is of that, then the more contemptuous people tend to become and the more they tend to crave face to face contact in itself, whereas it is a spiritual relationship that must be established. The relationship must also be real at the human level, through occasional contact and through right approach, but it is essentially fulfilled in your practice, in your living, in your meditation. So somehow in the process you must gain the heart of the Spiritual Master. If you do not, if you are busy struggling, rejecting, resisting, offending, then the spiritual process cannot take place-that is the Law.
Read the whole book – Paradox of Instruction