Love Is the Ultimate Test

Originally published in Vision Mound Magazine, Vol 1, No 10,
April 1978.

Love Is the Ultimate Test

A talk given by Bubba Free John to his devotees on
December 13, 1977

BUBBA: We tend to think of the earth as solid and
elemental stuff, whereas a better model is the living
organism. Just as we are psycho-physical organisms with many
different characteristics, including an elemental and more
solid aspect of ourselves, the earth, if viewed in the same
light as a living organism, reveals characteristics that we
tend not to observe otherwise. The earth is more like a
human being, a living body, a psycho-physical entity, than
inanimate, solid stuff. It is a living process, or organism,
that changes mightily, except that its changes take place
over great periods of time. The most recent view among
astrophysicists is that in its earliest stages the earth was
a kind of soupy environment, and that at some point living
organisms emerged from that amorphous soup. In other words,
life appeared out of the earth itself.

There is another theory among scientists, however, that
life did not originate on earth, but was introduced by
comets. In the tails of comets scientists have found
elements native to life that could have created life on
earth. These findings seem to support the theories about
great cataclysms in the past, close brushes with comets and
great bodies moving through space. In those cataclysms it is
possible that not only changes in the earth took place
weather and temperature changes-but the earth could also
have been infected with living organisms.

What do you think? Did we come from outer space? Even if
some form of life did originate here on earth, perhaps
higher forms, like human life, came from comets or from
something moving through space from outside our galaxy. Even
if all life, including human life, originated on earth,
where is that? Where is earth? If you lifted yourself out of
the earth’s sphere and continued to go, where would you
arrive? Where is space? Doesn’t this consideration seem to
you to be profound? I mean, it’s enough to keep you happy
all your life! (Laughter)

What is a place, and where is it? Within what does space
appear? Or if it is infinite, how far does it extend? Where
does it originate? How do you break through’ the surface of
existence that confines us to elemental states? How do you
pass altogether into the extremities of everything?

We are still somehow ourselves locked into this mortal
cycle, however full of wonder we may become in our
consideration. We are still born and continue for a while
and then disappear, perhaps to cease to wonder altogether.
So you think that ultimately we are oppressed,-
surrounded,-and -crushed, as – you have always believed?

The difficulty is that we take the gross-physical part of
ourselves much too seriously, whereas the whole body is our
position. We are a psycho-physical manifestation. There are
many aspects to us, including this elemental thing that
disintegrates eventually. But you see how mysterious we are
even in the present. What we are totally can never be
snuffed out. There is absolutely no way for that to happen.
You do not need any visionary information about the future
beyond death to be certain of it. It is perfectly obvious
that we are not contained in a physical description,
completely obvious. The physical stuff is animated by
something totally invisible.

The whole body is ultimately formless. It includes this
elemental thing-there is no reason to presume that we are
something only subjective to it. But what we are as a whole
is open-ended. It is formless, shapeless, not definable,
unnamable, obviously not dying. It is childishness to be
fretting over death all the time. It is nonsense. It is the
product of our fixation on a certain elemental fear. Clearly
the body is only an aspect of a process that in our
intellect we know very little about. We have observed very
little about it. We are mystified by reports of exaggerated
experience, which seem to imply that some sort of inwardness
is the function of Truth whereas it is not. In our fear we
are made to become subjective individuals, and that
subjective reaction to incarnation is the problem of human
life. That is the thing that we are here to comprehend, to
penetrate. When we have learned about fear, when we have
become that strong, then this elemental life becomes
unnecessary to us, you see, and we can pass into other
conditions of existence that are more expanded.

But we are not at the present time capable of being
anything more than human, so we are tested by this
confinement to the physical body until we can observe with
complete clarity our totality, our fullness, our existence
that exceeds elemental expression. We must be completely
certain of this existence as the whole body and exist in
such a condition even while alive. We need not be inward and
full of psychisms at all. In fact, those things are just
distractions; they impinge on our clarity.

What is your consciousness all about? Is! there anything
fleshy or elemental about your consciousness? Your
consciousness is not at war with your physical existence,
but take it into account and already you see that the whole
body is something that far exceeds your elemental perception
of it. Why is the heart continuing to beat? As soon as it
stops beating you are finished. Why is it beating? You are
not beating it,’ are you?


BUBBA: What happens when you have your arm in a cast for
a few weeks? In such a circumstance you can feel the
fleshiness and inertness of the body. But even though that
appendage falls asleep and becomes just stuff, like clay for
a while, nothing changes for the rest of the body. The
feeling dimension, the conscious dimension, is not changed
in the slightest. This flesh is not conscious, and yet it is
consciousness in some fashion also-space itself.
Consciousness does not appear within anything and neither
does space. It is unending magnificence, a uniform
absurdity, completely mind boggling!

Then why is it that most human beings are unquestionably
and unqualifiedly boring, repetitive, mechanical,
self-possessed, and regular? It seems that it would have
been just as easy in the great eternal plan for everyone to
be born essentially awakened and easily able to cut through
the impositions of ordinary experience.

There is a popular notion that if anything exists, it is
supposed to be perfect. And why isn’t it perfect? It seems
just as easy that it be perfect. But the fact is that it is
not perfect and that every entity that appears must also
disappear and in the meantime be obliged to a process of
transformation. What does such a condition say about this

DEVOTEE: Well, I don’t know!

BUBBA: Is the perfection of anything in particular what
the universe seems to be about? It seems that it would have
been just as easy for everything manifest to be a perfect
whatever it is, but that is not the way it is. Every process
is working toward an ultimate transformation that is always
more and more true to its own law, to its own fullest
destiny. But nothing is manifested in that fullest destiny.
Everything manifest is less than that and works to realize
it. It would seem, then, that manifest existence is not
about the perfection of anything in particular, but that
everything that is manifest is somehow a school, not
intended to be perfect in itself but meant to test a certain
characteristic of life. When that characteristic is
realized, then the school becomes unnecessary.

Thus, it is not that the earth is evil and you must try
to escape it. It is a kind of school, which, if you
participate in it most positively, with greatest clarity,
most fully, most truly, eventually becomes obsolete. Then
another dimension of experience arises to test you. You do
not then go on to another condition that is perfect, but you
go on to another condition that tests you as profoundly as
this one tests you, but there you perhaps enjoy a certain
inherent virtue as well as a certain limitation, which the
virtue must somehow transform. Here we all enjoy a certain
virtue-we are conscious, we respond in certain ways-but we
also have all kinds of limitations that surround us, that
are always combined with us, and that constantly test

This place is a school. There are creatures here other
than the human who are also being schooled, perhaps
advancing to be tested in the human form. But we humans have
nowhere to go. We are the end of testing on earth. Perhaps
it takes many, many lives of testing on earth in the human
form to be schooled, but there is nowhere on earth to go,
that we are in general aware of at least, that is a higher
school than we realize in our human form. Thus, if we may
perfectly realize the test of our human existence and be
schooled by it completely, if we can learn the principle
involved in it and be schooled by it perfectly while alive
in our present life, then we make this human life obsolete.
We need not keep coming back until the earth world becomes
perfect, because it is a school. It is already perfect as a
school. It could not be done any better at all as a school.
It is incredible as a school. As a place of perfection, it
is a heaven that does not make it. Earth does not even come
close as a heaven, as a perfection of anything in itself.
But as a school, it could not be more perfect. Its
complications are exquisite.

But what is the test that we are involved in? What is the
school? What is the essential principle to realize by being
a human being, a manifest being, in this condition?

DEVOTEE: Moral responsibility.

BUBBA: What do you mean by that – moral responsibility?
What does that mean?

DEVOTEE: It is only when one is awakened, via the
Presence of the Spiritual Master, that one starts to see
what the realization of life truly is. Prior to that
awakening you can’t realize it. You are unconscious, a dumb

BUBBA: So the Spiritual Master takes you to school. Many
individuals and spiritual teachings would lead you to
believe that the Spiritual Master’s task is to get you out
of here, to combine you with some alternative to this
condition so that you can contemplate it, meditate upon it,
and get out of here. That is one of the influences that you
encounter and must deal with, and a sympathetic response to
such influences is based on your own doubt, your own recoil.
The Spiritual Master’s function is not to lead you out of
here, as if this were just an evil place and the whole point
were to get out of it. The Spiritual Master’s function is to
lead you into this school, to make you completely available
to what this school is all about.

What is the fundamental encounter or test that human life
is all about? It is to be forced into the condition of
elemental impositions and to be completely superior to it.
We are tending always to contract, to recoil upon ourselves,
to avoid the pattern of our elemental relations. If we can
somehow become responsible for that reaction, then we have
gotten the lesson. It is true – if you get the lesson, then
this place becomes obsolete, it ceases to be necessary for
you, and you can perhaps go on to another school, grasp the
tail of the comet and go elsewhere and be tested some other
fashion. But human life is not as complex ultimately as we
believe it to be. If we truly consider what this human life
is all about, we see it as a single process, a single
encounter, Ultimately, we are being tested relative to
whether we will contract in the face of conditions and
identify with our personal functions or be completely non
contracted, completely free of recoil, an expression of
Radiance, or Love, at Infinity. That is the ultimate test.
We may grow in all kinds of expanded ways and therefore
gravitate toward other elemental or etheric planes, but the
test remains similar in kind, whether we will contract from
the disposition of infinite Radiance or rest in the position
of infinite Radiance. As long as there is even a fraction of
our structural potential in which we contract from the
disposition of infinite Radiance, there is some place, some
experiential condition, in which we will be tested relative
to that recoil.

There are perhaps infinite potential spaces or planets
within the scheme of manifest universes toward which we may
gravitate until the test is complete. Perhaps the earth is a
fraction of a great, school that is basically a test of the
super psycho-physics of Radiance. You see now how radiant
you are – practically not! You are practically at the zero
of Radiance. If you can penetrate the contraction of light
that you represent, then you may continue to grow even in
your human form and be a demonstration of Radiance in more
and more expanded ways, even while alive. If you can realize
Bhava Samadhi,1 literally, even while you are
alive in human form, perhaps then you obviate the necessity
for, the fractions of this school everywhere in the
elemental universe, everywhere in the elemental universe,
everywhere in the astral universe. Perhaps you penetrate
every level of cosmic potential if you realize Bhava Samadhi
even in this so-called place. When you become expanded, even
in your human structure, you transcend the earth, while
including it, as long as you live.

The great fear, what no one wants to do, is to live the
life of love. Nobody wants to do that. It is embarrassing,
it is not consoling, it involves a profound responsibility,
you cannot be a child and do it. So we prefer the magic acts
of self-destruction, the magic acts of dissolution, in which
we are not liberated from anything but relieved, perhaps. We
prefer orgasm to God Realization and to love. All of that is
a reflection of our childishness, our recoil, our inability
to go to school, to submit and be changed, to be
responsible. We are all self-destructive, you see. Instead
of celebrating, we poison ourselves, because we are refusing
the moral obligation inherent in our condition, which is to
love, to penetrate the whole force of our contraction, to
animate life as the absolute Radiance of Infinity in our
ordinary relations, to be morally heroic.

That obligation is not something that we are equipped by
tendency to fulfill. We must be creatively involved in the
Law, in the obligation to love, in the demonstration of
happiness. Having become involved in that demonstration, we
are dissolved. We are not permitted to survive. We are given
up to Infinity. We are thrown away like garbage, but it is
not humiliating. It is not offensive, if you grasp the
principle of it. And once you begin to live it, it becomes
the supreme delight.



BUBBA: There is a mechanism in nature that enables us to
survive it and, somehow be awakened to pleasure in the midst
of it, even after death. What a plan! I would much rather be
considering with you all four billion years from now in a
different bodily condition altogether, because this current
human appearance fixes our understanding in so many ways. We
represent a moment of motion expressed as time and space
that is very limited, deeply limited, disturbingly limited,
very disturbingly limited! We are not just mortal. We are
cattle. It is a primeval moment in which we exist, not as
primeval as ferns and dinosaurs, but they appeared not
really so long ago. A human being in this moment of
time-space, space-time, is still a very primeval event.
Existence is gross and dark, and we represent just a
movement on the water, a glance at possibility.

DEVOTEE: Bubba, you make it sound as if it is just the
beginning of the journey, as if we were just moving into

BUBBA: Yes. In terms of what we represent, obviously,
conventionally, we are at the beginnings of the universe,
the beginnings of manifestation. There are other galaxies
and planets far in time beyond us, and others that are far
behind us, where dinosaurs and slimy things are the optimum
moment of experience. Viewing what we are apparently, not
just what we may psychically consider ourselves to be, we
are just the beginnings of the motion on the water, just the
beginnings of that conflict with primeval life that can stir
us and make us vertical and move us into – not
God-Realization, because God Realization is the perfect Law
in every moment – but move us into a heaven like experience,
in which the same obligation toward God-Realization is the
logic of Truth, but in which the ordinary time-space
experience is much more benign than this.

If you could view this condition from billions of years
from now, this is slime. This is disgusting. This is the
excremental water, the mud of primeval chaos out of which
comes the Divine man, the Divine being. This is nothing. And
yet you see how obsessed we are conventionally with this
limited possibility. Therefore, we do not project ourselves
into absolute time. We project ourselves into the present
time. This moment, this experience of our possibilities, our
limitations, is a profound torment to us. We must be
projected into total time, through our sympathy with
Infinity, our happiness. Thus, through fulfillment of the
Law, we enable the process of evolution to continue. We can
quicken it in our sympathy, in our sacrifice, but
nonetheless we are sacrificed not just philosophically but
literally. That is why we die. Death is a necessary
interval. All the factors of present experience, however
delightful, are just excrement in the ultimate cosmos. We
must sacrifice all of it.

Sacrifice is what makes this great, damned, Divine plan
all so disturbing. You cannot really be consoled by the
Divine plan. Your only option for happiness is to realize
the Truth. And having realized the Truth, you represent a
principle that continues the process of evolution, without
knowledge. It goes on quite naturally, spontaneously, like
heat on the water, and it produces new forms. Within the
process that produces all those forms, you are eaten. And
you must be in a disposition not just to be eaten, but to be
a conscious sacrifice. It is the only way to be happy in the
midst of this existence. This principle seems particularly
important to me, considering how amoebic our present state
is, how obsessed we are with things that are not in the
slightest bit extraordinary. Our sympathies are with
everything dark and underworld.

Yet we are the first to stand upright. Ours is the first
moment of uprightness, the first moment of it. We cannot
even do it without getting backaches! It puts great pressure
on our kidneys and our intestines, because we are not really
upright yet. We are the first upright gesture. This is the
first moment of vertical experience, the first stirring in
the water. The monster is just standing up! That is why we
are still so dark and confused. We are standing, but at the
same time we want to curl down into the dark. Both gestures
are equal still, perhaps not altogether equal the vertical
gesture is a little bit more dominant, though not

Just as we are interested in standing up in brightness,
we are almost as equally interested in curling down into
darkness. That is why we are struggling all the time. That
is why to fulfill the spiritual principle is an agony for
us. It seems like such a muscular struggle, because there
are such profound tendencies working in the opposite
direction, back into time. The gesture in us that we call
our tendencies is beyond conception. It is really a movement
back into the slime where we are horizontal and secluded in
unconsciousness and perfect little circles in the swamp. You
may notice that all those little beings in the swamp are
perfectly circular, revolving on themselves, with little
hairy things shooting out from their sides from time to
time, perhaps becoming a little oblong and ovoid and
splitting. It is primeval, it is dark, and it is
unconscious. Our negativity is about that darkness.

You must move from that unconsciousness to the
relationship to the Spiritual Master. You must awaken to the
true Process that is salvatory in the absolute sense, and
also evolutionary, the Process that moves you beyond not
only the present moment, but also the present body, the
present configuration or pattern, into the Blissful Radiance
that is prior to space and time.

1. Bhava Samadhi is the ultimate
Realization of the Way of Radical Intuition, the Realized
state of the most radical or perfect Enjoyment, prior to
self, mind, body, energy, or any realm. It is the Condition
of all conditions, the existence in the Condition or “Realm”
that is Only God, the very Reality, the paradoxical
Realization in which body, mind, relations, and worlds are
not noticed even as or if they continue to arise. Bhava
Samadhi is without or prior to references, and it is,
therefore, unspeakable, or without