Volume 1, Number 4
The Religion of the Whole Body
a talk given by Bubba Free John on August 21, 1977
BUBBA: If you are constantly trying to survive, you become more and more afraid. You become afraid of dying, afraid of separations, afraid of the loss of things and the loss of others. The better things get, the more afraid you get. The longer you persist in the attempt to survive, the more threatened your survival becomes. Ultimately you do change, and separations and changes do occur. Other people die, and you die. All of that is the Law, and all of that is God. All of that is true to us. But since we spend our lives in the refusal of it in trying to survive only, death and change only happen to us, whereas if we live as devotees in the acknowledgment of our whole Condition, death does not happen to us. Death becomes a process for which we are responsible just as much as for breath and dinner.
We must become a sacrifice while alive. Only then do we live in God. Only the life of sacrifice acknowledges the totality of our Condition. We fulfill the Law through love, through free feeling-attention, through sacrifice of subjectivity, and ultimately through sacrifice of the whole body. When we begin to become that sacrifice, fear dissolves. Fear is only our mood, our reading of what we see reflected in our contraction, our recoil from Infinity, our attempts to survive, our own Narcissism. If, instead of holding on to mind and emotion and body and relations and the world itself, we release it all, there is no fear whatsoever. Fear is only the reflection of the holding on. Stop holding on and there is obviously no fear. But we stop holding on only if we respond to the argument of the Spiritual Master, One who is not hiding from any aspect of the revelation of God, One who is transparent to that revelation and therefore an agent of its communication and of its Conscious Power. You yourself must respond by taking up that way of life, by acknowledging the revelation that occurs in that Company. Then you will stop refusing the excluded aspect of the body, and the world, and the Divine Reality, and God.
There is a single event, and we are not rightly involved in it. Basically that is all there is to say. Through inspection of the event, of what it is completely, and through becoming rightly involved in it, we are happy, we fulfill the Law through sacrifice. Sacrifice is simply acknowledgment of the Divine in its completeness. The body in its completeness does not just exist and continue and change in benign ways. It changes altogether. It gives up parts of itself and becomes something else. And it also dissolves. If we acknowledge this process completely and see it as the revelation of the very Divine Reality, then we will give up our childishness, which is founded in fear, and we will become the process of death, of love, of sacrifice.
The failure to love is the same as the fear of death. That is why you have so much difficulty maintaining this life of love. You are afraid of death. That is the only reason. That is why you cannot do it. The mechanism that would be love is not available to you consistently. It is locked into fear, into the attempt to survive, to define yourself through anxiety. If you give yourself up, the whole body is transformed and the whole character of your life changes. But you can love only if you are no longer afraid to die. Because love is death. Love is the sacrifice of inwardness and independent existence into mere bodily existence, and the surrender of mere bodily existence into Infinity, beyond visions, beyond self-definition. Love is the ecstasy of the presentation of ones existence to Infinity. That is the Way. Nothing else permits us to be free and alive at the same time. Sacrifice is not suicide. It is the Law of life. But life also changes and dies, and the same Law applies also to changing and dying.
The event you fear in your observation of corpses and the ending of lives is the same event that you are obliged to realize in this moment, completely. To the degree that you do not, you are afraid and independent, separative, self-possessed, and not love. You have no free attention. Your feeling is constantly obstructed and lived through episodes of reactivity, fear, sorrow, anger, and all the resistance to change and dissolution. Only in our dissolution do we confront the light of Brahma and the mysterious beauty of Vishnu and the absolute consciousness of Shiva.