Hearing Capability

Hearing Capability

Excerpt from

The Yajna Discourses of Santosha Adi Da (1995-1996)

There’s No Escape, There’s Only Realization

A Gathering “Consideration” with Beloved Bhagavan Adi Da
In The Manner of Flowers On January 5, 1995


AVATARA ADI DA: You don’t have enough respect for your fundamental fear. You think it’s just a piece of you or just an experience hanging out there, you can get rid of it or ignore it, you know. And it’s not so. You have to find out your fear is you. But it’s also your own act. And you don’t have to do it. You don’t have to be it. So there is nothing frightening about that process-just the opposite. It’s not merely giving up self, like going into darkness. It’s about forgetting yourself in Communion with Me. It’s a loss of egoity, not a loss of self. It’s Realization of Self, the Self Condition, the Root-Condition, the Source-Condition. It’s egoity that is lost, the pain of selfcontraction and the bewilderment that comes from it.

The profound incident of what you could call hearing in My case was insanity. I mean, all these people who are declaring themselves to have heard Me-when was that day? [Laughs.] It is an extraordinary Realization. I have no doubt that devotees generally even have some sense of this understanding, because they have My Instruction about it and they’re doing sadhana with some degree of energy and attention. And so they do see things getting clearer in various aspects of their lives, you know.

You can say this about devotees in general. They feel less aberrated about this, that, and the other thing over a period of time and so forth, so that, in other words, they’re being purified of some aspects of their ego-routine and seeing that the Wisdom works, the Way works. And because they can even explain that much change in their lives in the language of understanding, then they imagine they’ve heard Me, because they could describe it as understanding and self-contraction and avoidance of relationship and “I don’t do it now anymore with my girlfriend”, or whatever it is, “or at least not so much”. And so they may think that itself is hearing, because they can describe it in the language of self-understanding.

It’s the little bit of the Law that casts out so much fear you feel good about yourself, you see. But you have to get the whole Law to hear Me. Hm? And not just the little bit.

AVATARA ADI DA: Surrendering from that very place of the knot. And that’s the unique hearing capability. Hm? Now, before that capability truly awakens, as I Said, you can make use of self-understanding as I’ve Communicated it to you and various aspects of the sadhana, and be purified of some aspects of the behavioral and emotional and mental aspects of your life, and feel good about that-and should, of course. It’s positive. But it’s not hearing. It’s not itself the sign of hearing. Hearing is this fundamental responsibility. You see?

That’s the Way of the Heart from the beginning. Do you see clearly the difference? [Devotees confirm that they do.] And hearing is simply the establishment, on the basis of all the foundation practice, the establishment of this capability, most direct, with fullest comprehension, fullest responsibility, so that you can do that sadhana, of going beyond the self-knot, under all the circumstances that may arise in the developing stages of life. They will not then become ego-reinforcing. They will not be deluding. They will simply be purified, like all other tendencies, and you’ll move on to the “Perfect Practice”.

AVATARA ADI DA: It seems logically so, yes. But, as I Said, you can step out of the process. People take vacations all the time, make the practice sort of nominal and superficial, either consistently or in some occasions. But if you don’t cop out, in other words if you stay with it seriously, stay focused in it, and maintain all the disciplines I’ve Given you, yes, hearing should come about readily, inevitably, and it shouldn’t take a great long time.

As I said, what are the reasons why it wouldn’t happen? Why would it be delayed? It’s taking vacations from the totality of discipline that covers everything, functional, practical, relational, cultural. You either don’t let the practice become intense, or you don’t let it touch everything. This is how you let yourself off the hook. Instead of focusing and listening to Me, in other words focusing in this discovery of the self-contraction, you’re looking for some gleeful or distracted alternative.

So you find this by playing it fast and loose with some aspects of the discipline, and then you otherwise get sort of dopey and you don’t practice Ishta-Guru-Bhakti Yoga moment to moment. You just do it sometimes. Well, that’s why hearing could take a long time. And many of you here are proof of it.

AVATARA ADI DA: Yes. You must discriminate. So that’s the first thing I look for in devotees. That’s what it means to go from student-beginner on to 1.1, 1.2. That’s supposed to be the sign, the stable establishment and maintenance of all the foundation practice. No vacations from then. So what there is to observe, then, in the crisis of hearing are the unique characteristics associated with that.

And you all have to know what you’re about. You have to use My Teaching fully, and make it your Law and your measure. If you do, then, yes, this hearing crisis should awaken readily.

Today we were talking in our meeting [Beloved met earlier in the day with Stanley, Brian, and Daniel Bouwmeester] that from the beginning to hearing should maybe be, about a year and a half seems reasonable. Student-novice for six months, and then a student-beginner for six months, 1.1, 1.2, on to 1.3 in another six months seems like a reasonable period of time over all, for somebody who is truly serious and doesn’t take vacations.

So a number of you have been around for a long time and haven’t heard Me yet. This is why. You’ve been peripheral in your disposition, and rather casually you take vacations from discipline and so on, don’t maintain the focus, and you just wind up spinning your wheels instead of hearing Me. If you really were serious, and could readily establish what’s supposed to be required for mature student-beginner, then you should have basic certainty that in six months you’ll have heard me and move on from there. If you don’t take any more vacations, six months ought to be enough for that, with the year you’ve already had behind you, or more, in the student-novice/student-beginner process, where you’re supposed to be adapting to this foundation practice.

The exercise of hearing, then, is to be sensitive to it as contraction itself, to be in the position of the pain, not outside it or avoiding it but actually in that position. It is not comfortable at all, not likable. It has all kinds of artifacts-physical, emotional, mental, and so forth, even in the breath. So the self-contraction itself is fundamental pain altogether, disturbance altogether, and ordinary life is motivated by it, because it is so profound, and it is detached from the fundamental Reality, the Divine Reality. It is lost in maya, in appearances, presumptions, even imagining that you are seeing the room, whereas in fact you’re just seeing one little view.

So it’s confusing. You’re not seeing Reality, then. You’re seeing an appearance associated with your own egoity. You can’t be in another position. You can’t be in the position of the

totality of the room. What position are you in? Some self-enclosure of thoughts and perceptions.

So it’s very uncomfortable to make this discovery of egoity. But as I said to you earlier, it’s not truly profoundly discovered except in the condition of Grace, of Communion with Me, and reception of My Teaching, and then, it’s in that total context that the ego is located also. That’s hearing, the true discovery of the self-knot, coincident with this whole process of Communion with Me, full of the Wisdom of Instruction that you apply.

DEVOTEE: I have a question.


DEVOTEE: This intensive period of hearing, six months period culminating in hearing, in a somewhat summary and all inclusive event …

AVATARA ADI DA: Even a better way of putting it, it is a most fundamental event, not just a whole lot of things coming together. It’s getting at the root.

DEVOTEE: And at that summary point of the crisis of hearing which is severe is the way that we don’t prolong its course, through the process of seeing?

AVATARA ADI DA: Through intensive practice. Intensive practice altogether. Most intensive practice, one-pointed practice.

DEVOTEE: That process doesn’t come together at that point, hearing, in the sense of seeing immediately.

AVATARA ADI DA: Not seeing immediately, no. What follows is a period, which in general wouldn’t be very long, of preparing for the Yoga of seeing. So seeing doesn’t arise coincident with hearing, certainly not in any fullest sense. But it is because of hearing that you become truly Spiritually sensitized to Me.

Devotees, even without hearing Me, have Spiritual experiences of Me in the body-mind, one way or another. But that’s not seeing. Hearing must be active in order to see Me. There must be the capability of feeling beyond the self-contraction and making that the basis for your practice of Ishta-Guru-Bhakti Yoga.

So when there is true hearing of Me, a sensitivity develops and is cultivated through that 1.3 period of sadhana so that you can make use of My Spiritual Transmission directly and “Locate” Me directly, rather than just have My Spiritual Force wash over you and generate experiences in the body-mind for their own sake. So hearing is cultivated in the 1.3 stage such that you become capable of this Spiritual submission to Me. The 1.3 stage is sometimes thought of by devotees as a period to test whether you have heard Me or not.

Truly that is not what it should be. It should simply be so, that you’ve heard Me. It’s most fundamentally a period of preparation for seeing Me, of organizing the practice based on hearing in a focused way in order to be sensitized to Me Spiritually. And then there is the level 2 practice, which is the direct approach to Me Spiritually.

So the true process of seeing, not just Spiritual experiencing of Me but real seeing of Me, becomes the Yoga for you at level 3. Again, some think that seeing is about some Spiritual reception of Me in the body-mind, that kriyas and visions and so forth are supposed to be what happens. Such things may happen, but they are not the Yoga. The Yoga is to feel beyond all effects and “Locate” Me directly so that you can be drawn into the position of the “Perfect Practice”.

So it is a special kind of Spiritual preparation that is based on hearing. It’s a process that you enter into as soon as you’ve heard Me. But its first stage, we call it preparation for fully entering into Spiritual Communion with Me. Whereas I Said, even before then, you may have had Spiritual experiences of Me, but they are not the point in the Spiritual stages of this Way. But what about all that?

AVATARA ADI DA: Well, the bench accepts your motion. [Laughter.]

DEVOTEE: In that 1.3 period, your life becomes organized around putting yourself in the position of preparing to see You, or cultivating that understanding, or that development, into full seeing by, You were Saying, organizing your life in a certain way. And I just wanted to clarify that.

AVATARA ADI DA: Yes, through that focus of the hearing exercise. Not just working on peripheral behaviors or checking out what’s going on with you in emotional-sexual terms and so forth-not really that-but this direct exercise, moment to moment, of feeling beyond the selfcontraction. And maybe it wouldn’t involve so many outward changes in your life. But it is a matter of realizing your life in this focus of hearing, in this exercise of hearing. And during that period, another thing that makes it a period of preparation is that the whole matter of seeing Me is studied and the Yoga you must practice once you have entered into the seeing process, what all of its responsibilities are and so forth. So it is preparation in the educational sense as well.

Also, the “conscious process” in one who has heard Me has a mental-verbal aspect to it. Like the Enquiry, “Avoiding relationship?”, or Mantra-Japa and so forth. One who has heard Me will in that moment still be practicing in that fashion, but the exercise of hearing has such power that it becomes a tacit process more and more rather than a verbal process. There is always the occasion of the Enquiry and so on, but fundamentally it becomes simply this exercising the flower, this constant pressing beyond all forms of contraction. [Beloved opens His hand at the level of the heart on the right side.] That means all forms of thought, all forms of perception, everything. So to realize your life in those terms is a profound matter. That’s what hearing initiates, and that’s what the 1.3 period is really all about. It’s a period of study and preparation for the specifics of the Yoga of seeing. It’s not expected to be a very long period.