Julia Anderson – New Thinking Aloud Interview



Julie Anderson, previously known as Whitney Kaine when she was a Playboy centerfold in September 1976, has had a multifaceted life. Before her spiritual journey, she gained notoriety as a model, but her path took a significant turn when she be­came a close companion of the spiritual teacher Adi Da Samraj from 1976 until 1992. During her time with Adi Da she was known by several spiritual names, including Kanya Samarpana Remembrance and Swami Dama Kalottara Devi.

Julie’s deep involvement with Adi Da included living in his household and contributing to his teachings. She authored an article titled “The Real Practice of Guru-Devotion” in the Free Daist Magazine in 1992, sharing her experiences and insights from her years of close association with Adi Da. Her journey has been marked by profound personal transformations, including significant events such as the deaths of her mother and Adi Da, which she describes as “ego deaths” that have deeply influenced her spiritual understanding.

In addition to her spiritual pursuits, Julie has been involved in addressing and critiquing the organizational issues within Adidam, the global community of Adi Da’s followers. Her efforts to foster open dialogue about these issues have often met with resistance, reflecting her commitment to maintaining the integrity of Adi Da’s teachings.

She shares the truth of Adi Da’s revelations, experienced personally over decades. Her website aims to expose the shortcomings of Adidam and spark essential discussions suppressed by authoritative conformity. Julie emphasizes the need for a culture that genuinely embodies Adi Da’s teachings.

Julie’s life story illustrates a remarkable journey from a public figure in the modeling world to a dedicated spiritual practitioner and advocate for Adi Da’s teachings. She continues to preserve and communicate Adi Da’s spiritual insights through her website and other platforms, aiming to foster a deeper understanding and genuine engagement with his teachings.

a Original video interview on www.newthinkingallowed.com Published to YouTube on February 4, 2024




Hello and welcome. I’m Jeffrey Mishlove. Today we’ll be exploring spirituality and death. With me is Julie Anderson, who has come all the way from Australia. She has been a guest twice be­fore on New Thinking Allowed talking about her life as an intimate companion of Adi Da Samraj, a spir­itual guru of whom she is a devotee and has been, even though he died 2008. Julie is visiting here in Albuquerque and I’m delighted that you’re with us today in the studio. Welcome, Julie.

Thank you, Jeffrey. I’m really grateful to be here. I feel I have communicated to you, but I also want to acknowledge to listeners how wonderful it is and how grateful I am to be able to be here with you and to feel your life and the environment within which you work and how rich it is, how full it is of all the forces and possibilities that ex­ist within this sphere within which you’ve worked.

They’re very much present here and I can feel the vastness of all of the possibilities that you’ve worked with. I feel grateful to be able to integrate that in the context of my conversa-tion with you about Adi Da and about consciousness. And, of course, this matter of spirituality and death is key in relationship to it all. I understand that this has been something that you have focused on in terms of your own process and consideration, too.

JM: Death is something everybody has to deal with sooner or later. It’s the one inevitable fact of being a human being. We are all going to die.

JA: Yes. Spiritually speaking, this is something that you’re very consciously aware of. It’s not a taboo to speak about. It’s actually a practice, that feeling awareness of the inevitability of that. So in a very real manner, you die and allow that death while you live. That’s not a negation of life in any way whatsoever. It’s actually a combining with that which is eternal, acknowledging that there is really no death except for the falling away of this psycho-physical mechanism that we identify with while we’re embodied. That’s the fundamental process of being consciously aware and awake prior to and co-incident with everyone and everything that arises. This is an extraordinary gift to have that process in yoga alive and awakened in the being. That’s the process that I live in relationship to the transmission of Adi Da.

JM: Let’s begin, before we launch into the subject of death, with the very fact that you initially reached out to me. It’s been quite a few months now. You felt motivated to communicate to the world some-thing of your own personal, direct experiences with this controversial figure, Adi Da. Back in the days when he was alive and I lived in California, [he had] a spiritual center in San Rafael, the city where I lived. So I was familiar with Adi Da’s community. I think you’ve felt that he has been misunderstood both by the outside world and by, I think what you’re sug-gesting, even by some of the leaders in the current movement, Adidam, a religious movement that he left behind. This guru in your mind has been misun-derstood all across the board and you are hoping to correct the record by sharing from your own heart what you personally experienced and know.

The Knee of Listening 1972 and 2004 editions


JA: Yes, thank you, I very much want to do that. As we’ve considered a bit, I would say that my life has included a full spectrum of experiences in rela-tionship to human, religious, spiritual possibilities. When I came into Adi Da’s ashram and lived in inti-macy with him and with devotees, that was an op-portunity to really dive into it, as I’ve indicated, not only through study, but also through direct experi-ence. As those years passed, which we’ve touched upon, I also then had the opportunity to test what it was that I was given in terms of direct experience, transmission, and instruction, also in the general life that everyone lives, just as a human being in the world assuming the fundamental responsibil-ities that anybody has to assume. And of course, they’re very different depending upon where you are and who you are and what your interests are.

When Adi Da passed away there was another process that I began to become involved in which is a re-evaluation of both the direct experience with him and then living in the world and reintegrating again with my blood family also. With his passing, there was also the observation and evaluation of the relationship that I had to all the devotees and the gathering that was created around him and the work that has continued since he passed on. With all of those different factors involved, one of the things that I discovered was really important was that I had to be able to make use of the gifts that I was given in the spiritual process that also affected me humanly in order to be able to really feel the truth of what it is that I had been given directly, my own experience of it, and how that actually then was beneficial in life, and not even in this life but then beyond life. So where would I begin?

JM: First of all, for any of our readers who haven’t watched your previous interviews, we are posting links to them on page 37. Second of all, I think I’m going to plunge right in. The one experience that struck me as really worth probing is an occasion in which, while you were living in his intimate com-pany, as one of four intimate partners at the time, he went through what today we might call a near-death experience. He died and he came back and you were present during that event. 

JA: Yes. In the context of a spiritual practice and specifically relative to a practice that involves transmission and yoga, my relationship with Adi Da as an intimate of his and also as a practitioner, everything that I lived with him and what I re-ceived through his instruction and transmission had a significant impact bodily. It wasn’t abstract and it wasn’t just a philosophical study. It was the yoga that combined the whole conscious being and the energy of the being simultaneously. Anyone who’s actually practiced a spiritual or religious life that was that involved and that in-depth knows that it has significant impact in relationship to how the body feels, how the energies move, potential transformations, purifications, awakenings, all sorts of different kinds. What was required in my relationship with Adi Da in the process of the prac-tice had to do with taking responsibility for the various awakenings or understandings that came about through that process.

With Adi Da, part of what he did with us that was controversial was that he actually himself, having already most perfectly or fully realized what he describes as reality truth, which is the very self-condition, the condition that’s not other than you or other than me, but it’s the context within which all of this is arising, that very self-condition, which is consciousness and radiance itself. This he lived with us, and I live that and feel that that is the transmission of his being. 

In the midst of our relationship with him through all the years, he entered into living with us intimately and with a large number of people as you indicated, we talked about that in some of our other dialogues. This was in 1986, the particular period of time that you’re speaking about. I want to preface it by saying this was a unique event be-cause of its particular significance, but this process of death occurs quite regularly in the process of real yoga and real spirituality. That has to do with the fact that as consciousness and energy goes through a process of awakening, there are certain aspects of the being that begin to fall away. Then you go through another level of awakening in which there is an actual death of something that falls away and there’s an awakening into a new rea-lity or new understanding of reality or certain as-pects of reality.

So at this period of time he was working very intensively with a number of devotees who he knew intimately and were available to him to delve deep into the process of insight relative to the man-ner in which the being functions. So for example, with me, I had to know myself physically, emo-tionally, mentally, psychically, even beyond what I might experience in this life but the possibilities of previous lifetimes. There are means by which we can enter into this investigation. You would be familiar with these different possibilities because of the many traditions in which you can enter into these subtleties. 

And so this period of time was like that. We called these periods of time reality consideration. Each time we would have such a reality consider-ation, we would focus or concentrate on a certain aspect of psychophysical possibility. This was the way that he submitted. He actually entered into these possibilities with us so that we could express to him what we were experiencing and he could reflect back to us. We could ask him questions. We would see things. And they weren’t just universals that we would see. They would be particularities relative to our own psychophysical manifestations. So it was not abstract. It was very intimate. The implications of these experiences in being exposed or seen or revealed as such was very revealing and very vulnerable and very emotional because the ramifications of what you saw may be signifi-cant in some sense. Say something that would be exposed that would be embarrassing or that you didn’t understand.

JM: For example, as I recall, when I met you at the airport, I’m waiting outside of security. For a mo-ment I believed I was watching him come down the escalator. 

JA: Right

JM: I had to look twice and I realized, oh, it’s not him. But for a moment it was a perfect image of him as if he wanted to briefly manifest.

JA: Ah, beautiful. So the coincidence, the coinciding, that’s a perfect way to feel what I’m describing. Because even though Adi Da appeared objectively in that manifestation that you viewed, as he did objectively in a body for his devotees while he was alive, as you indicated is that this matter of the manifesting and un-manifesting, being embodied, not being embodied, the process of our relation-ship to it always occurs consciously. So you were conscious of that event in that moment and saw that. It had a significant communication to you.

JM: You could say I felt it, not just saw it.

JA: You felt it, yes. That’s beautiful. Thank you for bringing that up and acknowledging that that exists, those real possibilities. Obviously it exists. This is our life. We exist in this body and it’s lasting for a period of time. But it will come to an end, so the fact of the death of it is significant.

JM: Let me just mention one thought that’s come into my head. I forget the scientist who wrote this, but I’m pretty sure it’s true that because we live in a quantum reality, things occur in—I’m going to try and explain this—that reality comes in and out of existence trillions of times every second. It’s at the Planck scale, reality. One might say that we all die trillions of times each second.

JA: Sure, yes. Infinitely.

JM: It happens so fast that our consciousness can’t really perceive it, I don’t think. But a trillionth of a second it’s very real.

JA: Sure. Consciousness is the principle, the constant. Consciousness can manifest as feeling awareness or being conscious of as a mental per-ception or conception. There are different forms of consciousness, but the consciousness that is constant is not modified in that regard through any kind of a mechanism. So in this event that you were asking about, Adi Da, through his coin-ciding as conscious feeling awareness from the self-position in relationship to the manifestation in which we are still alive as, he said his specific unique purpose was to help illuminate these dif-ferent possibilities and these possibilities that you are speaking of that are vast, varied, and infinite, those perturbations that occur. To be able to have an insight and understanding in relationship to what is our real position in relationship to all that arises. Are we identified with the arising or is our position of identification that is true prior to that? That’s what he describes as the fundamental self position.

In 1986, in this particular reality consideration, he said to us that there came a point of a death that occurred for him that revealed that it was no lon-ger necessary for him to have to submit in a particular way that he had been previously, which he would describe as reflecting and teaching about the various manners in which we needed to have understanding about the different possibilities of our manifest life. These yogic deaths always had various forms of psychophysical qualities to them in which one could feel incredible sorrow or incred-ible passion or incredible anger even, or frustration. There’s a peak where you get to where there’s a limit that is reached and the limit seems like an end or even a kind of tragic event.

But when you pass through that threshold of fire, then there’s a liberation that comes about. This is what occurred in the moment with him where he said that the divine self-condition position had ac-tually fully manifested through this submission of his whole being in coincident with manifestation, his own body, his own physical body, the body of those that he was intimate with, and then not only because we are intimate with others like in this room, we are intimate with one another because we’re in this space together. But we also know based on our own direct experience that the world is psychophysical. We’re not just combined in this room, we’re also infinitely connected with all sorts of possibilities and different vibratory levels of awareness beyond.

JM: I presume that the event you’re referring to in 1986, from an external point of view, would have looked like a medical emergency of some kind.

JA: Well, it did at a certain moment in time, but what’s important is to also describe what occurred right prior to it so that I can give you more of a graphic feeling of what the environment was like. Adi Da was in his own bedroom at this point in time. We had the capability on the hermitage island in Fiji to be able to communicate to him just through intercoms, through different rooms and environ-ments and places. We had been involved in one of these intensive investigations and considerations with him. He began to describe to us that he was acknowledging that there was a yogic event that was beginning to occur in him. Now this was not something that was unfamiliar to us, so we knew that it was significant.

On the phone he communicated to us that he was beginning to feel that he was leaving the body and describing that he could feel numbness coming up, convulsions and it was beginning to be-come difficult to breathe. When he described that, a number of the devotees, including myself, came over to where he was. He was alone in the room at the time, and one of the doctors also then came to attend to him. We had to do this because the impact of the spiritual process in him was so significantly intense that it had an actual effect on the heart, the breathing, the brain; all of it was going through a transformative process. He ceased to breathe for a while and felt that he had died, and yet he came to again. He doesn’t really like to call it so much a death event because it gives a connotation that it was some kind of medically validated [event], as if he was in an operating room or something. But it was a death because what fell away in him and was relinquished was a particular form of working that he did not need to do anymore.He said that in that particular moment he was free then to be able to manifest the fullness of the realization of the self-condition and the transmis-sion of that without having to reflect the limits to us that are possibilities within the human struc-ture and within human life. In this it was really ecstatic because it meant that he could then more liberally live freely as he manifests his own realiza-tion and enlightenment. Then there was a magnifi-cation for us to feel that in relationship to him.

JM: In other words, by going through—to an external observer such as yourself—a death experience, he became more himself.

JA: Exactly. Precisely. Yes. His function as a guru or a teacher knows there’s a burden of responsibility that you bear and you do actually make a sacrifice, a surrender to the student or to the practitioner or to the devotee to be able to give what you can give and you have such passion you want to give it all because it’s ecstatic, it’s happy. You want them to understand. He did that so thoroughly that the magnification of his own position of freedom and liberation was magnified. So it’s exactly what you’re describing. In doing that, that magnification then was also given to the devotees who were sur-rounding him.

I can speak to that because what occurred in that moment is all the struggle of the being and the passion of the heart to want to realize freedom, lib-eration, truth, ecstasy and have that be permanent wasn’t something that I could do in relationship to life or truth or even the guru as an effort. The yoga, as I’ve described it and what Adi Da demonstrated, was always a matter of a relinquishment of a par-ticular binding force or a relinquishment of a point of view, a relinquishment of a limit and then open-ing up and awakening more profoundly and more deeply.

So when that would occur with him, there would be a simultaneity of something that would occur with us. In that moment what happened for me was that I was spontaneously awakened to what’s traditionally described as the witness posi-tion of consciousness, the non-dual reality itself. There was a struggle that was let go as he relin-quished the process of having to reflect to us the limits within the psychophysical structure and the esoteric anatomy of the body-mind. In that free-dom there was a liberality, a lack of concern rela-tive to a way of having to engage the body-mind in a strategic fashion to try to achieve something as a yogic practitioner. It rested me in the certainty that I could trust the position of the self in conscious-ness itself as being the revealer and the realizer of truth itself. Does that sound complicated?

JM: It sounds pretty vague actually. On this chan-nel, for example, we have done quite a few interviews on a relatively recently described phenom-enon called the shared-death experience. It’s like a near-death experience, but people who are in the presence of somebody who is going through a death experience often sort of go along for the ride part way. I’m under the impression that something like that was occurring with you at the time.

JA: Okay, that’s a good example. It’s interesting that you use the word vague. This points to the limit of language in terms of being able to actually describe something that’s non-verbal or that can’t be fully conceptualized. It can be conceptualized, but the conception of it is not the direct experience of it. Even the direct experience of it is always modi fied by a point of view or the feeling of the ex-perience itself when you’re talking about a process in the consciousness domain itself.Now, that may sound abstract or vague, but for me, in relationship to Adi Da’s transmission, that is more real as reality itself than even what we’re experiencing in this room. Why is that? It’s because it’s permanent and it’s a constant feel-ing-awareness of being itself as love-bliss, radiance, consciousness, awakeness, awareness that never is absent. Whereas experiences are always coming and going as we were speaking of earlier. There is the process of the death of it and the birth of it, the death of it, the birth of it, the awareness of it, the dying of it, the going away and you can’t hold on to it. It’s never permanent, all of that. So to me, having been through what I’ve been through with Adi Da, this is more vaporous.

JM: I get that. That’s really fascinating. It’s like the one reality; I think you referred to it as love, bliss, radiance, brightness. That’s the real reality and this is what is often referred to as maya, something of an illusion.

JA: Yes, so that is what became tangible repeatedly in Adi Da’s company. I could describe numerous ex-periences that coincided with that, but the context or the actual transmission was the magnification of that bright condition so that the separate sense of self would fall away and there would be the con-stant awareness of being the self, the only self that is true. Your expression of those who are with peo-ple who are in the death transition is really perfect because I just experienced that recently with my mother who passed away a couple of weeks ago, and also with my father and with other people, and with animals also.

Many people will speak about what a blessed event it is to be with individuals who are not fight-ing the process of the death transition and they are aware that they’re involved in that death transition. Or, they may be individuals who have lived a life that they feel at rest with the process because they don’t have regrets. Somehow they have dealt with or come to a resolve or a resolution and they’re just accepting of that passing. They may have been taught something as a human being about death or as a religious or spiritual practitioner to not resist it.

With my mother, for example, she was very afraid initially of death and did not want to die. When she became aware that it was inevitably go-ing to happen I began to have very intimate conversations with her, even as she had Alzheimers. One of the things that I noticed with my mother having Alzheimers is that even though her memory was not good, I kept reminding her, “You are not your memory, Mom. Can you feel that? You are always present. Your memory may be falling away, but you are not your memory.” And she got that, really clearly got that.

So in the process of her transitioning and real-izing that she was going to die, I kept saying, “Mom, this is going to happen. There’s no point resisting it now. Your body is going to fall asleep. It’s just not going to function the same way that it did. There’s no point in resisting it. It’s inevitable, so better to participate with the process.” I helped describe to her what would occur as her feeling awareness would no longer cease to be identified with the manner in which she was familiar with the body, her thoughts, her breath, the heartbeat, and there would be the tendency to grasp onto it, to try to continue to live and to continue to identify with it. So I said to her, “You have to let that go.” I could vis-ibly see in her face and in her body when she began to actually understand that, her whole being be-gan to literally relax and come to a point of ease. It was notable even by the carers that were with her that there wasn’t resistance in her body through the fear of being moved and what’s going to hap-pen. I could feel a luminosity, literally see the light of the energetic being which is combined with the etheric body. Then beyond that, there’s greater and greater brilliance of light that surrounds and per-vades us if we’re actually open to allowing it to en-ter in and we’re not so tight as a psychophysical mechanism.

When I saw this in my mother, she then be-gan to cognize and reevaluate her life, reevaluate her relationship to God, and then she was then actually able to let go. The ease with which she passed was brilliant to observe and an affirmation for anybody who is in the room when someone passes. Her presence was still there. She would of-ten say that it was the heart. She called it the heart. It was love, the feeling of love, the feeling of her love for her husband, my father, that had already passed away. That God was love. All of these things become obvious, and they aren’t just metaphors. They’re the actual direct experience of it, but expe-rience then that’s going beyond the psychophysical mechanism.

She told me when she finally made the recon-nection with God. She said God had told her to take his hand and not look back. I was suggesting to her to always look into the light, be aware of the light that seems to be above, in relationship to the psychophysical mechanism and just let go. Don’t look for something as if you have to grasp onto anything and then the perfect possibility of if and when there’s a next for you, it will be revealed. To see her go through that process and actually par-ticipate in it was a profound blessing because then it only magnified that understanding that it’s true in relationship to someone that I loved. There was a lot of sorrow in her passing because of the familiar-ity and the intimacy and the gratitude and the ex-perience and the history, and then for my brothers and sisters to see that too. We’re all very different in terms of our process and life and beliefs and styles and all of that. But then for them to feel and see the certainty that mom is okay.

JM: One of the many books published by the Dawn Horse Press about the life and teachings of Adi Da, maybe one of the most unusual of the many books, is called Easy Death.

I don’t know how many books there are, I think about 30 or so. But Easy Death wasn’t just from Adi Da, it’s not just his writings. It included the testimonials of many other people. But I gather that that book is suggest-ing something that you just described, that death can be a very easy thing. It doesn’t have to be a struggle. JA: Yes. Anything that he communicated about life was in the context of the embrace of the inevitability of death. This means that when we are born, there is a process of adaptation. Part of that process is the identification that takes place with this, being a body and a sense of self. Adi Da describes that through the mecha-nism of attention and the feeling of relatedness, consciousness feels related to a body. Conscious-ness feels related to and becomes familiar with a body and a sense of identity, and then in relation-ship to others and things and life itself. That’s the arena within which we feel that we exist and that we are alive.JM: Most people would say, I am my body.

JA: Yes. I am myself, I am my body, I am my thoughts, I am my memories. Different ways of de-scribing it. There are sensations. Adi Da is saying, yes, those things are real and true. They are direct and real experiences. But the actual self-position, again—and this can never be repeated too many times, because I’ve had a lifetime of it—the process of awakening into this is that the true position of self-identity is not dependent upon this mecha-nism of being a body-mind. Consciousness itself is constant in all different possibilities of manifesta-tion, even if it’s not this gross psychophysical one.

In Easy Death, the reason it’s called easy death is that the process of identification is what needs to be investigated and understood. The act of iden-tification is the act of what defines the ego. The ego as an identity is what will inevitably die when the body falls away. Aspects of it may linger and con-tinue, but even those levels are undone, as there is the actual ascension into the light in which all of that is dissolved. The potential for something new may occur, but as anyone who studied reincarna-tion, past life experiences, or even memory loss, or whatever, will know that there can be a continua-tion without a memory, but sometimes those mem-ories will bleed through again and they’ll seem to be a continuum.

[There is] the possibility of the continuum of experiences that any person can remember some-how through transitions in which you might fully forget it, like with a death event, an actual physical death, and then you might remember something about a seeming past life. Those experiences are actually occurring in what could be described as a field, a patterning of possible experiences that consciousness identifies with: actively does, actively chooses, and identifies with it, and begins to form its sense of self-persona, and that’s what is de-scribed as the ego. Easy Death is describing that the way to be able to accept death when it actually hap-pens, for one, physically, is to embrace the process of relinquishing identification while you’re alive, and to then be able to be established in the light of the true identity while you are living. So it’s a constant process of life and death as a simultaneity in that which never dies and actually is never born.

These are traditional terms and traditional ref-erences that many practitioners will understand. For most of humanity this kind of language and kind of speech might not be familiar and would seem a bit strange even to speak about because the fierceness of identification just with the body is so strong, what the body can taste, what the body can smell, what it can hear, what it can see, what it can feel, how it combines with all of the elements in life, and presuming that’s just it. It’s not. It’s really genuinely not.

JM: But it’s so seductive.

JA: Yes, it is very seductive. That is the process of what Adi Da describes as identification, differenti-ation, and desire. Through the act of identification as a separate self, there’s inevitable differentiation as everything else is different. Then if everything seems separate and different where in reality it’s not, then there is a desire—like when you say it’s seductive—there is a desire to then combine with or have union with what seems separate from you. Where does that desire come from? It’s a longing, an intuitive heart longing and yearning of knowl-edge that actually in truth there is no separation. So the heart itself or the being itself is actually yearning for something that is already natively and inherently true. So that’s the lesson of life and understanding that if you yield into the truth of your condition, there is a constant death of identi-fication, differentiation, and desire.The process that he describes is that of no seeking. But that no seeking isn’t about recoiling from life as if life is a negative, or on the opposite end of the spectrum, taboo: either light or dark or something that you want or something that you don’t need. In fact, all of those combinations of pos-sibility can exist without being in any kind of a recoil from it. It’s only in that asana that the truth of your position as conscious light becomes revealed and magnified because you’re not superimposing anything on it or squishing it into a box of identity. Does that sound abstract?

JM: No, that’s beautifully put. I like the expression asana in that case. It’s like our whole physical existence might be thought of from a larger perspec-tive as a posture.

JA: Precisely. I have a wonderful story I can tell you that is an example of this. In 1992 when Adi Da indicated to me that it was time for me to leave his intimate sphere and the ashram and be tested in the world—I think I might have said this to you—he said to me, ”Now, little Buddha, it’s your time to go out into the world.” I really did not want to leave, and I think I’ve spoken about this in detail, but I knew that the process of my intimacy with him was much more profound, not dismissive of the emotional, sexual, human intimacy as being part of his family and the ashram and all the in-timacies that I had to go through another transi-tion, which would be a death. This was a signifi-cant change.

In the moment when I realized I was leaving, I kept going into an asana of curling up because there was so much sorrow about having to leave, and he kept reaching over to me and taking my whole body and putting it into—I was sitting in a half-lotus pose—and he told me that from going forward… Give me your hands for a moment. He told me that he wanted from now on that my asana, my posture, had to be this: he put my hands on my thighs and he said, “From now on, this is your asana.” In other words, the open asana, and allowing that to be completely, fully descended into the being as going into the world in which I’m leaving everything that I love, everything that I’m familiar with, with incredibly immense grati-tude for what had occurred for me, and now I’m going into an unknown in which everything will be tested, re-adapting to life differently than I had from birth till the age of 18, and then reintegrate with all of the wisdom and lessons that I had learned and had to be tested without doing this [gestures of contraction, closure and defense].

The asana that he had taught had to be one that was entirely open, an open vessel, flowered out, completely receptive, able to feel every-thing without recoil. In that, there would be the heart-ability to discriminate and continue to al-low and make choices that would magnify bright understanding, the intelligence of the heart, and the certainty that the self-position is not depen-dent upon the vast possibilities that I would be finding myself in. Is it the choice to identify and then feel the angst of the loss, or somehow need-ing that thing to be satisfied, to satisfy me as a separate self, or was I going to be able to be in the world without the proximity or the dependency upon what was presumed traditionally necessary as an ashram, sacred space, the guru, the teacher, the sangha, the gurubais that makes it really rosy for spiritual practitioners? Try doing it in the world. So that was a profound instruction. And again, there are these moments—I won’t ever for-get that—because the transmission of him taking his hands and showing me what that posture was, that’s the easy death. Be at ease as life rises and falls.

JM: I gather that transition was hard for you, if I recall. You went through a period of psycho-therapy to accommodate the changes. 

JA: Exactly. So this is where it’s reality consider-ation, the process with Adi Da as the yoga of the bright. It’s because there is no recoil. Because the psychophysical mechanism is made up of patterning, the possibility of patterning that consciousness is identified with, karmas, traditionally vasanas, samkhya, it’s all the different ways through the tra-ditions that name these different…

JM: Samskaras?

JA: Samskaras, yeah.

JM: In other words, habits.

JA: Habits, tendencies, liabilities, virtues even, all the different ways that a person can be de-fined. These you adapt not only from this physi-cal embodiment through the bloodline, you adapt that also through deeper levels of manifesta-tion, whether the reincarnated soul, and then the causal dimension. We’ve touched on that last time that we spoke. There’s the causal dimension, which is just the feeling of relatedness and atten-tion itself.

At all those different levels I had to then re-address my life based upon this asana and the trust in the spiritual process itself that had been given. I even had to question and went through all of what happened in my relationship to him. That was the most important part. Because even though I have had intimacies with my mother, my father, my brothers, my sisters, my dear friends, and then Adi Da and the Guru Kula, those inti-mates around him, gurubhai’s, ashram, even other spiritual realizers through the study and the vi-sionary visitations of many realizers through the experiences with him, traditions, realizing that all of the vastness of all of that is in psychophysical feeling awareness of this persona, literally so. As direct as an experience is I can touch this (touches the chair). There’s that kind of touch that has happened in relationship to so much history and memory and even present time and future. All of that, becoming aware of that. As time went by I had to re-address all of that. The time that I spent where Adi Da was teaching and reflecting, there was an awakening that was occurring, but it was a fundamental intuitive seed awakening. But that seed had to blossom and flower and be tested to see whether or not it would remain like this or if it would go like this [gesture of palm opening and closing like a flower].

JM: One never knows. There’s always the possi-bility of backsliding.

JA: Exactly. The backsliding occurs if the self-position is lost by virtue of failing to maintain the integrity or the fidelity to that in relationship to any life experience. As you indicated, yes, re-entry as you could call it into the world was a new birth.

JM: Let me jump around a little bit. I want to go back to the moment in 1986 when Adi Da went through a death experience. As I recall from earlier material you had sent to me, he wasn’t sure he was going to return.

JA: No, he wasn’t. This defines the manner in which he functioned. There was never a certainty that he assumed in advance of direct experience. In that moment and in relationship to life, he never superimposed thought, pre-thought or historical thought upon the moment of that event. Just allow it to occur. What the significance of it is will be revealed. The revelation can’t come through the superimposition of history because the body-mind is a repetition of history. The mind is a repetition of memory. It’s all just patterning. Yet for something new to be revealed, you have to allow it without a precognition.

In that moment he couldn’t even really speak about what had happened. It became clear over time the actual significance of what had happened for him. That actually took quite a long time; I’m talking about months. [In] a few days or weeks he began to speak about it, but only like, “This is my birthday. This is my real birth as a human being, fully human,” not some sort of fantasy you might have about a guru or a god or avatar or whatever you might want to superimpose on him. He was a man, fully vulnerable of all his own psychophysi-cal makeup and patterning that he was living with and we were aware of. He trusted us enough. We respected him enough. He respected us. So there wasn’t a fear with just allowing the saying of what-ever it was. Even if it wasn’t clear in that moment, “That’s actually really what happened. This is what really occurred. Now I’m understanding it more. Oh, now I can speak about it more clearly. This is the truth of what occurred.” It’s like the ah moment, the satori, this is ac-tually what occurred. Why? Because it is an affir-mation of the certainty of the position of truth it-self. It corresponds or it coincides with that rather than being something that is simply of mind that can come and go. But it’s self-authenticating. You may have heard or seen that language in his teaching where he describes, “It’s inherently so.” It’s self-authenticating, self-validating. That is even a common understanding with someone who in hu-man terms feels empowered. You become certain of something because it becomes obvious. Well, it’s the same thing in relationship to reality truth, spir-itually or transcendentally realized; it’s authentic and becomes obvious as being true.

JM: What, as I recall, he revealed when it became clear enough to him, is that one of the things that brought him back from death was a thought of you.

JA: Yes, that’s a very significant moment. I could not comprehend the significance of that in that moment. I was surprised when he said that. I still am. I don’t think I have a way to cognize that fully, except that I could describe that he indicated to me in the midst of saying that that I was one of the people that he worked with really intensively. I was available to him to completely combine with him in every way and go very, very deep with him, very viscerally, all together, physically and emotionally and mentally and beyond in all sorts of different realms of possibilities. I was available to explore all of this with him so that my feeling awareness with him and his process is so thoroughly combined. My passion for realization and freedom was so inten-sified that I made a vow with him very, very early on. He said he would take me seriously as a practitioner and as a devotee in relationship to him if I would trust him beyond the fear of betrayal, sepa-ration, and death. Having been around long enough to know the significance of what that would mean, I said to him that I did, that I would do that because my longing and my yearning for that freedom was really my only purpose for existence anymore.

At that moment when that happened, I feel that the integrity of my trust in him (heart inuited as the most fundamental self condition) was not just mine alone, but it was the heart of humanity. Why? I’m not separate from the rest of humanity. I’m not merely an individuated being. I don’t identify myself as that alone anymore. So when I speak of anything that occurred in my relationship to Adi Da, I actually feel that I was and am only, as he described, “one of his coins”, one of the beings that was available for him to work with human-ity as a whole and make the communication that he needed to to everyone through his writing and through the means that he’s given. He said that I epitomized the struggle that he had to endure in terms of teaching the lessons that were necessary for human beings to have to learn. So I was brave enough to stay with him.

I saw his gratitude for that, I saw his tears, I saw his love, I saw his passion, I saw his need, the reciprocal need for someone to be sensitive enough to how important it was to stay with him in the process of what he was doing. That expression from him personally, that’s what it meant to me, is that revealing or saying that he comes down, the full self-condition manifest through the sacrifice and the reciprocal participation of a lover as one who is willing to stay with the process of truth, to stay with the I Am that is the self in the yoga of realization. In that moment he said he was drawn into that relationship with me, but I don’t see it as a separate self, as a “me, me, me.” Not like that at all. It was just another expression of a moment of him revealing the nature of the yearning and the fidelity that’s required to bring or draw the divine process into manifestation. That has actually epit-omized my relationship to him, the revelation that occurs, the manifestation that occurs through that fidelity, the heart fidelity to the yoga of truth itself. There are a lot of stories that I could tell about ac-tual physical manifestations happening.

So when he talks about that coming through, the intimacy with him in relationship to me, that’s when he gave me the name Swami Kalottara Devi Mataji. If you study about that particular name, which I won’t go into the details of that now, but it is the surrender of the mind. It’s the surrender of identification with the self, the separate self posi-tion. To be given over so fully and intimately that it’s not just a union, but what remains is only the self condition, simply the self condition. That is the process within which life continues to be lived.

JM: We’ve talked about the book Easy Death. We’ve talked about your mother’s death and how at the end it was an easy death. I’ve also heard the word “ordeal” used in connection with Adi Da. If I recall correctly, he might have said, “the ordeal of discipleship,” or his ordeal as the ordeal of being a guru or an avatar. So it’s not just all easy. JA: No, that’s right. Not remotely easy. If you’re seeking to be satisfied, if you’re seeking to be given something for free, if you’re seeking to have what is given to be able to be something that you can own and control independently, if you’re seeking to give something that’s going to give you a sense of life be-ing easy, that’s not the true spiritual process. Anyone who’s entered into a life that requires growth psychologically or emotionally or even physically, going beyond the habits of the being, it’s an ordeal. It’s always an ordeal.

Adi Da would in the very early days speak about just imagine being somebody who’s grotesquely overweight, just speaking at a very phys-ical level, what the ordeal is to actually have to go beyond the habits, the addictive habits, the feel-ing that you have this need connection with food. It’s an ordeal. Any kind of growth beyond a limit is an ordeal. The spiritual ordeal is most intense because you are relinquishing certain forms of dependency on a familiar way of functioning and you’re learning new forms of means and arms that you never even knew that you had. You’re enter-ing into passageways and ways of living that are unfamiliar.

For example, the energy body is another level of reality that is so significant in relationship to the physical condition. In fact, this is all energy. This is all just energy, modified energy. It’s constantly changing even though we perceive it as something that’s very finite. So becoming sensitively aware to the energy body and then having the energy body combine with the psyche or the mind and the pos-sibilities, that’s an ordeal of adaptation because it’s not familiar. Then you enter into the awareness of that and then you get to the point where you even have to go beyond familiarity to actually enter into the domain of consciousness itself, because con-sciousness is prior to mind. Consciousness itself is prior to mind.

JM: I like that you make that distinction between mind and consciousness. Many people seem to obscure the two. As a result, they think that we are like computers.

JA: Precisely. And that when you’re dead, you’re dead. When the brain stops, you’re dead. That you’re only conscious through the mechanism of whatever is computing or happening and trigger-ing in the brain. That’s absolutely not true. When you have that assumption, of course, there’s all sorts of… People can become horrified of that, but there’s also the flip side of it. It’s still fascinating. There’s even nothing negative about the fascina-tion with it. It’s extraordinary. The whole way that this mechanism functions and the way that it con-nects with all the different levels of possibilities and the extraordinariness of it. It’s all fascinating. As you said, it’s seductive. It’s alluring. So there’s a point in which, if you make a choice to investi-gate it and to experiment with it and experience it, the yoga of the bright is to have greater fidelity to consciousness itself. Adi Da, in terms of his com-munication, where he says, “I am the one and only,” which a lot of people have a really hard time with, in that communication he’s not speaking as an ego. He’s not speaking as a separate self-identity that is saying, “I, as Franklin Jones, am the one and only. Look at me.”

JM: It’s a problem that mystics have had through-out history. Many have been executed for exactly that, particularly the Sufi mystics. They get their head chopped off for simply saying something [like] “I am the truth.”

JA: Yes. Ecstatics. Or even an enstatic, an ecstatic or an enstatic. Ecstatic is ecstasis. It’s something that’s communicated that is outside or beyond. En-static has to do with more of an internal, the identification with, say, the atman, that is prior to ex-periential phenomena, where there’s just absolute void, complete and utter stillness, no arising. And in that, there’s the I Am. Ramana Maharshi, Buddha, many great realizers in the midst of their ecstatic communications, the samadhis that we spoke about, you speak ecstatically from that, and you do. You make proclamations. So Adi Dham’s procla-mation of, “I am the bright, divine self-condition,” well, people will stop there and react before you continue to listen to the communication of the I am condition, “I am the one and only.” That is true of everyone and everything. I am not other than you, as you are. There is no distinction.

JM: It’s beautifully put. It’s so fundamental and yet so difficult to grasp at the same time. I think in the half-century that I’ve been doing interviews, the best ones always come around to that very point. We seem to need to do it over and over and over again, because as soon as you grasp it, you can lose it.

JA: Precisely. And that’s just a habit. That’s the automaticity of egoity, identification, a sense of dependency. It literally is a machine, an automaticity. That is the act of the ego that Adi Da indicates that we can awaken beyond and prior to so that that au-tomaticity doesn’t define you. That’s the process of bright yoga. But not exclusive of or separate from all of the great traditions that also are existing in and pointing to and have experienced that divine light, that divine truth, that divine self-position, but describe it through the permutations of vari-ous forms of experience. What he’s saying is unique and why he says that his revelation in seeming time and space is a culminating revelation, because he’s indicating [that] it seems like there’s all this history and time and space and it’s happening in a linear fashion. There seems to be a future, there seems to be a past, there seems to be a present moment. But in truth, there is only the one divine self-condition that is eternally and always already present, now. And now… And now… No matter what arises.

JM: Let me go back and jump around a little more, Julie. You talked about a kind of a death that you experienced when you left his intimate company in 1992. That was a major transition in your life, after living intimately with him for 16 years in the ash-ram. But then in 2008, 16 years after that, he died. After all you had been through, you were still inti-mately connected with him at the spiritual level.

JA: Yes. When I left in 1992 one of the things he whispered in my ear as I hugged him for the last time when I was about to leave the island, he said to me, “Never forget that your relationship to me is a spiritual one.” And I said to him, “I promise I will not dishonor you.” That was not two separate beings speaking, even though it appeared that way. There was all the emotion of lovers, where a shift had happened, and suddenly I was no longer going to be there intimate with him. We both felt the angst and the sorrow of that. Yet the commit-ment to truth was greater than and beyond our own coming together and coinciding that way.

So fast forward through that period of time of having to deal with the seeming loss of that in-timacy with him in human terms and even in spiri-tual terms, even in what had happened with him as guru and the manner in which he worked in his crazy wise way, which triggered a lot for me to have to examine. Did I understand that correctly? Have I responded to that rightly? Do I feel betrayed be-cause of it? Do I feel victimized as a result of it? Has it failed because I’m not there anymore? Did I do something wrong? All of those ordinary emo-tions. Or, am I so full of myself that I can go on and I can teach myself, or assume a role because I would get people reflecting things to me and wanting me to do that kind of thing. Even people that I worked with. I did spa therapy and taught yoga and med-itation in just very ordinary circumstances, and it would unexpectedly, to me, be reflected that, “Wow, there’s something happening with you that seems significant, and I want more of that.” I didn’t know that that would be reflected to me because I had been in an ashram for a long time and didn’t have any knowledge of how I would appear or seem to be in the world.

JM: When you were in the ashram, I understand that you had been designated by him as a swami. 

JA: Yes. In that sphere I played a lot of senior ad-vanced roles, even coveted roles, and I’d always say, “Got a minute?” [Laughs] No, you may have a fantasy notion of what this life is like, but I even invited many friends around Adi Da, devotees that I knew that wanted to be close, for whatever reason, unbe-knownst to those who were able to be around him, it really didn’t have a lot to do with a knowledge or an ownership of it, as if you could in advance know that that’s something you could or could not do. It just became something that you found that you were capable of. Similarly in the situation when I left, being around him, is that there was a lot of doubt about my ability to function in the world because I knew that what I had experienced was so unusual, and also because of how controversial it was. Even for me to say that I was a devotee of Adi Da, I didn’t know what kind of reaction I was going to get. Of-tentimes I got negative reactions from people.

JM: There were scandals.

JA: There were scandals. Even to this day I still get it. I don’t react to it anymore because part of what occurred through that period was an ability to be able to fully comprehend without reactivity what is not other than an obvious process that one has to go through and grow beyond in a reaction to identification with the separate self in the con-text of awakening to the divine process and reality, truth itself, without shaming or negating or mak-ing anybody feel like that’s really crap or you’re less than because you might not understand that or you have to go through this thing. It actually has granted incredible compassion, which I didn’t have before. The qualities of being able to be patient and to step back and observe it and feel the angst of it, too. All of these things can be simultaneous with-out having to recoil from it. So when I got to the point where Adi Da passed away, I had already been two years in ther-apy because there was a point—this is an import-ant moment, another death, another moment in which there was a significant transition in my relationship to him—and it was in 2006. I was living as a devotee still, sort of peripherally involved with the gathering, not so much directly living in an ashram or a center, which I had continued to do since 1992, but I was still associated with the gathering in Melbourne, Australia. I was working at a spa retreat in Victoria in Melbourne, Aurora Spa Retreat, a wonderful place. It was a beautiful temple. I worked there for four years. During this period of time, my husband and I began to invest in properties. We were making money. One of the instructions Adi Da gave me is, “I want you to be-come completely financially independent.” He said, “You don’t have to do it alone, but I don’t want you to be dependent upon the organization. And also you needed to be able to feel that you, as a woman, were not dependent in relationship to men.” So I had to integrate the capabilities of the male-female aspects of the being during this period of time to become stronger while cultivating the feminine simultaneously. He gave me specific instructions this way all through these years before he passed away.

In 2006 it was an interestingly unique time because while I was in Melbourne I happened to come across a lot of swamis [who] were associated with Adi Da’s traditional lineage, that was with Baba Muktananda and Bhagavan Nityananda. These si-multaneities or synchronicities would happen unexpectedly while I was living in the world during this period of time. Part of the trusting of the revelatory process of spirituality and yoga is that these coincidings will come. It’s all part of the perfection of the patterning that’s necessary for you to learn from or to be informed by or to go beyond. So I started to associate with devotees that were close to Bhagavan Nityananda as the head of the lineage, and the shakti or the durga actually as the icono-graphy associated with this lineage. I was commu-nicating to Adi Da about all of this. Of course, these communications became very significant around how he would again use myself, and many, many other devotees. I’m not the only one, of course, this has happened through, just to make that really clear. I’m one of many, many devo-tees who could speak this way sim-ilarly. I’m just one that happens to be blessed with being able to have an opportunity to speak to more people about it in detail.

So when I was speaking with Adi Da about this, for some reason I began to look and compare traditional ashrams and organizations that I saw thriving in relation-ship to what was happening with Adidam as an or-ganization. One of the things that Adi Da always addressed about the devotees around him is that we seemed to be failing as a mission. That some-thing about what he was offering—and I think it had to do with the controversies that were out there about the way that he worked—had to do with the fact of the pronouncements and proc-lamations that he was making that people were finding offensive. It had to do with the fact that he was speaking in a manner that was not exactly the same as all the traditions and it was hard to grasp. Altogether, as a new tradition, as something new being revealed, it was not easily graspable by many people.

He would often describe that those who would come to know of him would be people who would have been born into this lifetime while he was em-bodied, who would be available for some reason or other to have gravitated towards knowing him in some form. He said it wouldn’t be necessary for these beings to have to actually be in his physical company. He was so productive in terms of what he put out and what he created on so many differ-ent levels that it actually has infiltrated the world quite a bit. Yet the number of beings who were ac-tually willing to speak about him and become part of the process of helping his work to prosper is still very limited. This was always a frustration of not only his but for all of us. It seemed to be self-sabo-tage, almost. We’re wondering, what the heck is wrong? Why is this not working? Examining ourselves and the limits of the organization and how come we’re not functional, how come it seems to keep collapsing, we’re not getting the resources and there’s so many changes in posi-tions and devotees coming and going, like myself.

So in 2005–2007, during this period of time, I ended up having very difficult conversations with him where I fundamentally told him, and I will say it as I said it, “I feel you have created a monster.” Meaning that I felt like the organization and the gathering of devotees were not rightly aligned and lacked integrity. I began to see it (the organization) as extremely cultic in relationship to him. I meant that in the cultic sense of which he had revealed because combined with observing that devotees were being kind of fanatical and fundamentalists there was an insular dissociative asana like: “You’re the only one and this is the way and you have to be involved in this fashion and do this.” I’m looking at it and feeling the way that we’re functioning has nothing to do with the manner in which I know living the direct relationship to him demands and what it requires, which completely undoes any way of living that way of cultic relationship to him.

But on the other hand, because he was so com-bined with us, there was very much a liability to feel that he was the one orchestrating everything that was happening. During this period of time I went through another process of having to exam-ine what actually happened in terms of how things occurred around him. Doing that in the context of myself becoming more free to accept the gifts of freedom that had been given to me without being dependent upon him as a separate other, giving it to me as though I needed certain something from him as another manifest persona. In other words, “Remember our relationship is a spiritual one and never forget that.” So the spiritual nature of the relationship was no longer dependent upon his physi cal form.

This was magnified when I began to under-stand more about his process in relationship to the great tradition of Baba Muktananda and Bhagavan Nityananda and his relationship with these other gurubais in that tradition and beginning to share experiences. Then these other swamis are talking to me in a similar way relative to their own process in relationship to Baba Muktananda. Then there are other devotees from other traditions that I began to communicate with and realizing, oh, this devotee-guru relationship, this relationship be-tween practitioner and teacher. I’ve read about it in the books, but then actually in life to be able to feel the nature of the way all of us have had to process what it actually is to own responsibility for partici-pating in an incredibly intense ordeal.

Well, in 2006, I said some things to him that would seem to be taboo that you would never say to a guru, you’d never say to a teacher. If you were really, really respectful, you would not say these kinds of things. But I had an intimacy with him in a human way that I knew that if I wasn’t real with him and honest, without taboo, without fear, to be able to say to him: “Some of this s*** that happened, I really don’t like it. I don’t like what devotees are doing. I don’t like the way that they’re spending money or what they’re doing, or this, that, or the other thing. It seems counterproductive. What’s the point of it?” I just said it all. 

His response to me was so beautiful. He had absolutely zero reaction to it. Zero. As soon as this occurred it reminded me of other moments throughout my relationship to him when a similar thing would happen. Like one moment in a pique of frustration:“You call yourself God?!” You know, like a passionate “What?!” A sense of betrayal. “You promised. You promised!” And again, a moment of reflecting on who is it that I am speaking to that is promising what? A deeper examination of the na-ture in relationship to God, guru, spiritual process, reality.

In 2006, when I made this complaint, so to speak, he said, “Okay, I am going to relieve you of any sense of responsibility that you have to ’righten’ anything about what you observe and feel is wrong. But I want to ask you, please don’t dissociate from anyone or anything in the midst of it.” So on that point, and that’s a big deal… When you’re feeling the volatility of the being, dealing with the depth of emotion in relationship to not only human mat-ters, but religious and spiritual and the whole thing and the traditions and God and really involved in the intensity of that examination, even at a more profound level, he’s saying: “Okay, that crisis, that’s okay that you’re feeling all these things, [but] don’t dissociate.” So again, it goes back to this open asana, because dissociation is a recoil.

JM: At the same time, you are feeling that you have been involved in something that’s hypocritical.

JA: Yeah, I felt that. I really did feel that.

JM: And he’s saying, stay with it. Don’t run away just now.

JA: Don’t run away, yeah. Don’t dissociate. As a response to that, Nick and I actually moved closer in.

JM: Nick being your husband.

JA: My husband. We decided to pick up where we had established ourselves, subdivided the property, built another property, bought and sold and related to the devotees there, and life [was] really full of all sorts of things that we were involved in. We picked up, left it behind, and moved in closer to the ash-ram again as a form of response to the instruction, a trust in the instruction. When you follow the guru’s instruction or any teacher’s instruction, when you’re going to go through a threshold or a passageway of difficulty, you can be certain that that’s when the fire will actually be magnified, because there’ll be a process of purification and there’ll be a process of disentanglement from limits that you’re identified with. When I moved back in closer, I only saw the very thing that I was complaining about even more so.

JM: Of course.

JA: Yeah. Without dissociation.

JM: He didn’t tell you to let go of your realization that something hypocritical is taking place.

JA: No. As a matter of fact, the interesting thing that occurred is that while I was there and I’m beginning to feel like I can’t even swim anymore, I felt like I was sinking into a depth of despair about confronting [that] everything I have done in this process has been worthless. Not that I had lost the ability or the feeling awareness of consciousness itself, that’s the paradox of it, that was never lost. But the actual manifestation of the fruition of his work and the ability for the gathering to manifest a sign of integrity or manifestation of the integrity of that radical realization of consciousness itself and the freedom in it. Because I had seen the im-pact that that had had on him bodily, psychophys-ically in his own yogic process, that was a piercing in my own human heart of seeing what he had to endure. And so at that point in time, when I’m seeing it even more clearly, I’m feeling like I can’t swim, I just can’t, I don’t know if I can do this. I began to experi-ence significant and severe depression. I went to a doctor, I needed help. I had already employed all of the things that I knew how from meditation, yoga, and the herbs and the therapies and everything I could possibly do. Finally, I went to a medical doctor and the medical doctor said to me, in no uncertain terms, “You need to get psychiatric help. You need to get someone to help you through this.” Because I told her what I was involved in. Fortunately she was recommended to me by a friend and she knew that this doctor would be able to comprehend what it was that I was going through.


JM: Yeah, most doctors probably could not.

JA: No. So there would be these blessings, these coincidings, whatever you want to call it, but you would find the right person that would be able to help you in a moment of need. So this was a woman who could help me and she gave me on to another doctor, who she said she knew personally and that this man would be able to understand the process that I had been through. I ended up going into a six-year process of therapy relative to integrating ev-erything in terms of hypnosis, deep memory ther-apy, all sorts of psychotherapy. I went on different forms of medication, to experiment with that, to see how I could even out all the symptoms that I was having psychophysically. Adi Da was aware that this was happening. Everything that I ever did was always in direct relationship with him. No reaction. Constant guidance to devotees in terms of admonishing: “make sure that she has what she needs, that she’s getting help with what she needs and serving her in this, keep me informed,” and then he would say: “make sure that she knows what’s happening with me.”

JM: She, being your therapist?

JA: No, me. But that being said, the therapist was a man. So the female doctor, I had to have a re-ferral from her to be able to go to a specialist. I’m extremely indebted to the man that I went to. In a very real way he knows me better than a lot of people do, even people that I live with. Why? As Adi Da had taught me, there was no purpose in going through any kind of investigation or exploration or insight wherein everything had to be explored and said, unless I do so without any kind of apprehen-sion, no recoil. Because in that kind of relationship and in that process you have to trust that the truth will be revealed about it in terms of what’s significant. So that’s the process that I went through with this doctor too.

But going back to 2006, there was an import-ant moment while I was in the midst of this process of examination. He asked about me, even though I wasn’t so much involved with many devotees. He knew I was going to have to take some time out and that I no longer had the responsibility to have to play a senior role of leadership within the institu-tion. He relieved me of that, relieved me of having to try and fix it, because I needed to go through this other process, and I wasn’t able to give myself over to the culture in the same way that I had. But interestingly he asked me during this period of time to serve as what he called “God’s Eyes.” This is a role that actually isn’t a function of instructing people or being directly related too interactively with devotees, [such] as teaching courses or having intimate considerations with them about their own process. But it was a function in which I was called to communicate the truth of what was actually really occurring that was not exclusive of being able to make some kind of sense out of the dynamic of opposites, of everything that was arising. It was what would be described as being able to communicate the es-sence in the midst of the mayhem, being able to bring a greater understanding so you don’t lose the thread in the midst of the play of life or the leela of the spiritual process, the ordeal of it. He gave me that function to be able to do that and to communicate to him and communicate with devotees about what I was observing in the midst of all of this.

JM: In other words, he didn’t ask you to keep a secret of the fact that you thought there was a lot of hypocrisy.

JA: No. As a matter of fact, I was known, in relationship to him, to not lie to him. That was one of the virtues. He revealed to me very early on that that virtue was necessary in relationship to the divine process because, who are you lying to? What’s the purpose of lying? The divine is indifferent in that regard, and who are you speaking to? An other that is the divine process that’s listening to you? Or who is going to be injured by lying? Who is going to be served by lying? What’s the purpose of deception? What’s the purpose of being so opaque and decep-tive that you are not available for the spiritual pro-cess for real? You have to be transparent. You have to be open and [have] transparency in order for the revelation to occur.

So he gave me this function, and I was asked to choose a few other devotees to do this with, and he specified women. Myself and three women be-gan to engage this process together. But as soon as it began to happen, we noticed that the ones [who] I had chosen to do this with, and he blessed for us to do this together, we hit a wall of the force of the or-ganization and the bureaucracy of functional con-tinuation. This was not meeting. The esotericism of the process and the speak of truth itself and the bu-reaucracy of manifesting the organization in func-tional terms were coming at loggerheads and there was a stalemate. We had seen this throughout the years in different ways. The long and the short of it is that that function fell apart. We couldn’t engage anymore because the level of frustration was just a fury to be able to try to penetrate that wall of solid-ity, because it was like turning the tide of a force of intent to institutionalize the religious and spiritual process.

JM: Which probably is a fundamental conflict in any religious or spiritual organization between the needs of institutionalization, organization, and the true spiritual path.

JA: Precisely. That describes what has been occur-ring ever since Adi Da left the body. The gathering is in a conundrum. When I say the gathering now, I don’t regard the gathering being the institutional organization that has taken hold.

JM: There is an organization called Adidam.

JA: There is an organization called Adidam that is serving a very necessary role in terms of the survival of the literature, the sanctuaries, the art, the different gifts that he’s given, all the various forms of instruction. There has been a lot of different instruction that has been given over the years.

JM: An archive. So that’s a necessary function. It needs to be preserved.

JA: Exactly. No question about it. The individuals who are doing it, I bow down in terms of the role of responsibility and the capability to stay with it in their own fashion in the midst of all odds. Also, when you get forces of nature that are actually literally trying to shut these things down. I mean, we’ve had to deal with fires. We’ve had to deal with accidents. We’ve had to deal with hurricanes. We’ve had to deal not only in the place of sacred domains, but even with individ-ual devotees. These accidents, sometimes you could say, what-ever, you can’t name what the force is, but you know for very certain that there are dark forces that are trying to shut down and counter illumination, the divine intervention, particularly when it comes from the necessity for human beings to have to surrender to something beyond their own separate self-identity.

JM: But wouldn’t it be the case that you would think of these things, I think maybe the word you might use is leela, it’s all part of a divine play?

JA: Yes. Traditionally that’s the case. There is a unique manner in which Adi Da will speak of that, however. In the fourth and fifth stage traditions, which are sort of associated with the seven stages of life that is Adi Da’s tool of making sense, or a skeletal measure or tool to be able to understand the great tradition of mankind, there’s a fourth to fifth stage process that occurs, and these are the ones that are truly religious or spiritual, that can also bleed over into the sixth stage, and then there’s the seventh stage process. In the fourth to fifth stage traditions is where you will find this description of leela, or the play. Krishna is an epitome of that. Krishna and the gopis; saying “everything that arises is perfect. It’s all God. Cosmic consciousness. It’s all light. It’s the revelation of no separation”. The true self is undifferentiated in relationship to the whole play, so you can be ecstatic in seeing this as perfection in terms of how it arises. That’s true enough to be said.

However, if you’re involved in the process of awakening in the consciousness domain itself, that is prior to the mind and prior to the structures of the psychophysical mechanism that correspond with all possibilities of the cosmic universal do-main, consciousness being aware of it, not separate from it, then there’s a discrimination that occurs wherein you understand that you can make certain errors of making overly much of experience itself, and you can see that experience itself is not perpetuated by consciousness itself. Conscious-ness stands free itself. Consciousness itself stands free, undisturbed. It’s not the creator or the cause. Once consciousness itself manifests through the mechanism of attention and identification, differ-entiation, and desire, through the feeling of relat-edness and familiarity in the cosmic domain, that is the wheel of maya. It perpetuates itself.

However, to call it a perfect play would ascribe perfection to identification of the separate self-manifestation. Adi Da is not saying that’s not true enough to be said, but he’s saying conscious-ness itself is not the one that is perpetuating maya. So the perfection of it is only in the recognition of it as a necessity to learn lessons about the limits in itself, which will provide you with perfect op-portunities. The coinciding is perfect because you will come across every necessary purposeful and meaningful significant association that will reveal something to you. Like our coming together is not arbitrary. It’s significant in the divine process, so long as we stay in the radical understanding in relationship to consciousness itself. The consciousness domain itself.

JM: It’s a very subtle thought.

JA: Extremely subtle.

JM: I can kind of barely grasp it, but I think I did. I think I barely grasped it.

JA: Yes. That’s the seed, that’s the locus of the causal. It’s even deeper than the causal. It’s the prior domain. The subtle is the middle station of the heart. The intuition, that seed, is in the causal knot, which is the structural passageway via the left side of the heart into the consciousness domain itself. This is extremely tangible, tacitly tangible, and yet cannot be accessed by the mechanism of the brain in and of itself, or the body in and of itself, which does not mean there’s anything wrong with the brain or the body or the mind in and of itself, un-less it becomes independent of consciousness itself.

JM: In the midst of all of this energy, in the midst of you working with this group and running into the obstacle and going through the psychotherapy, is when he died.

JA: Yes, right in the midst of that. I remember at a certain point I had become so certain that the process and engagement in life was essential. I had ceased to react to it. He had brought me back and forth, by my own choice and by his asking, to be in and out of his physical company. In that there has been a relinquishment of that level of attachment. So when he passed away physically, of course I was devastated mainly because I knew that he had not been able to enjoy the fruition of seeing his work manifest as he had indicated. Many times [he] would ecstatically speak about the way that it would be and could feel the positive impact or intervention or penetration it could have in the world, particularly in terms of bringing it to an equanimity where there would be no conflict potential. It doesn’t mean that there wouldn’t be fire and water and all the play in that regard, but there would be an ability to maintain a way of associat-ing or relating to one another in a non-dual fash-ion, truly non-dual, and that we could live that way with one another. That was what his passion was, to bring about a different manner of living, a new way, a new world order, in order to live with one another completely differently than we had based on history. JM: Well, it sounds like what you’re saying is he envisioned himself as a world teacher. Like Jesus Christ or Buddha, and although he was greatly revered and still is, one might say that his teachings never had that level of impact.

JA: Oh, absolutely not. He was aware of that, and he actually knew that that wouldn’t happen. He never intended and knew that the manner in which he had to work would never be in the pub-lic domain. He would not be surrounded by thou-sands and millions in gatherings, mainly because the kind of work that he needed to do could not be conducted with that many face-to-face. He had to work with fewer that would have the reverbera-tions in the world, universally.

JM: Well, Jesus had 12 apostles.

JA: Right. And look at the reaction he got, even in the small domain that he did. As time went on and Adi Da became more known, because the interconnectedness through the means of technology became more obvious in the world, and which is really widely obvious now to everybody, no matter where you are. You go to very remote places in India and you walk into temples that are so remote and the priests have iPhones. That’s one of the things that I was gobsmacked about when I went to India, and I’m seeing them perfor-ming these incredibly sacred rituals in front of these icons, some that are thousands of years old. I’m really delicately quiet, com-ing into these domains with the kind of preciousness and tenderness and respect that you would go into these spaces. And then you see they’ve got the sports glaring and they’ve got the rock and roll happening in the tem-ples. The combining of the East and the West and the left and the right and the alpha and the omega. It’s just the clash of all these seeming opposites just wildly manifesting presently.

Another interesting thing about Adi Da is that he prophesied all of this even before he be-gan to teach, even before he passed away. The last 10 years of his life, he described exactly what was going to occur after he passed on. He addressed devotees about how the gathering would continue to function in a cultic fashion. I told you about the [Orpheum] trilogy, one of the books that he wrote and penned that had the Mummery Book in it and the Scapegoat Book and the Happenine Book, which hasn’t been published yet because he was hoping to find a publishing organization that would publish it respectfully, not just hide it away somewhere because what he reveals in there as a literary work of art is as consequential as what he manifested in his visual art forms. It again is a breakthrough kind of communication because he uses language and shapes language in a way that it initiates a process that draws you really deeply into it. Cognizing what he communicates there requires an availability, like a seed recognition of his function as a spiritual teacher and a divine incarnation. He knew that he would not be glorified. He wasn’t looking for that. He wasn’t looking for world recognition as something great like that. His passion was much more profound and not about a separate self or egoic identity that was looking to be granted favors for whatever he did. He only had the passion to have what he communicated and had awakened, that wasn’t dependent upon the survival of his physical body, to stay alive. What he calls his treasures or his means, coincided with many beings. Compared to many who know about him, only a handful gave our lives over and continue to try to help the means or the gifts that he gave survive so that they can carry through the transmission of what he established.

This Love Bliss Being is permeating and vi-brating everyone and everything in the psycho-physics of things. You see signs of that, not just coming from Adi Da as a separate person, but it is the divine manifestation continuing to reveal it-self in all the great traditions, because all are going through a significant Shift and awakening in con-sciousness.

JM: Let’s talk about his actual death. How was it treated by the community?

JA: He was involved on the island, at Naitauba, in late 2006. He returned to the island of Naitauba to reside there at that point in time saying it was likely he wouldn’t leave anymore. Now, something about Adi Da that I think a lot of people know and talk about, he says things and then maybe a few months later he does the opposite: “I’m never going to leave the island again,” or, “I’m not going to do this anymore,” or, “We’re going to only do this,” and then before you know it, shape-shifting and something happens differently. So we sort of took it with a grain of salt, okay, you’re not going to leave again and we’re thinking he’s going to live on and on and on and that’s our hope that he won’t die fairly soon. We don’t want him to. But he’s starting to indicate that the resistance in the world to the communication that he is bringing is really strong, and he’s saying it’s being resisted because the guru function itself is being resisted and there’s a mis-understanding about the actual true nature of the guru function or the siddha function or an avataric incarnation or an actual divine intervention, and that there’s more and more a stronger inclination for independence. “I can realize this on my own, independent of everyone and everything.”

JM: It’s an American characteristic, among other things. We regard ourselves as fiercely independent people, pioneers.

JA: Sure. That in and of itself in the right mea-sure, but not done overly much, is useful to become strong and capable of functioning as I had to my-self. If you stop there though, you are not open to further growth. There’s always further growth, growing an awakening above and beyond and prior to. So yes, this mode of what they call the dark time or the Kali Yuga, which not only Adi Da has spoken of, but many traditions have spoken of that there will be a dark time. There have been dark times. It’s a cyclical pattern of there being resistance, causing calamities and wars. That’s not the divine doing that. That’s humanity doing that. It’s allowing the dark forces to take greater hold of the force within the sphere within which we all live, not just in this red-yellow realm, but in the vibratory spectrum of possibilities, even extremely subtle entities that aren’t embodied in physical forms. So there’s all sorts of beings that are working at different levels of manifestation with the forces that are present right now. Adi Da was working with those forces himself. The yoga, the meditation, the puja, the ritu-als, the invocations that we were taught to do were working at that level also with him. So at this point when he passed away in 2008, none of us were wanting or expecting him to, but he kept communicating that there’s such resistance in the world and, “These dark forces are impinging upon me because there as been an in-ability for my function to be able to be respected and be given a circumstance with the right sacred context, with enough numbers recognizing me to be able to move with a force of protection in the world.” So, he said, dark forces are coming onto his body. He said that he was feeling yogic symptoms of another death that was about to occur. He said that if there wasn’t going to be an advancement of enough numbers of devotees to be able to incar-nate the advanced practice, to carry on. It would become our collective burden of responsibility without there being a physical guru necessary any-more. Which is an interesting twist in him playing the siddha role, the guru function. Where now he was actually indicating there would no longer be the necessity for a single (living individual) guru function. That the actual truth of the esoteric pro-cess of the incarnation of priorly established non-dual truth required the force of every man and woman, non-differently realizing (awakening in) the self-position itself. That would liberate mankind.

JM: That’s an optimistic vision.

JA: Incredibly. Reality idealism (eternally alive), a bit of a paradox, right? So, this is what’s communicated in Not-Two Is Peace, which I’ve brought up before, the call to global hu-manity. And so just before he passed away, he said that he started working at a more profound level, where he was working with his writing and work-ing with his artwork. He was attempting to work with a number of practitioners that he was hoping would move into, again, more advanced practice. He said, it’s not happening. Adi Da is the epitome of integrity in terms of saying it like it is. He’s not going to say, this is okay, and this is it, if it isn’t. He’s going to call it what it is. He’s going to say, “You are still relating to me cultically.” What that means is, “You are not relating with me in right relation-ship, relating to me, realizing me non-differently.” In other words, “Taking responsibility for the full force of the brunt of realization itself and doing that in relationship with one another so that you take on this responsibility. It’s not mine. I’ve done everything I can possibly do. Don’t scapegoat me for the failure of it.”

If you look at the thread of his communication, he was always saying exactly the same thing about the pitfalls of relating to the world as an I-other dynamic in relating to God or the divine force or spirit in that fashion. Then also relating to guru in that fashion, relating to any other be-ing in that fashion and constantly indicating; “if you continue to do that, you’re going to scapegoat me. You’re going to scapegoat God. You’re going to be the victim of the failure in relationship to life. You’re going to blame the universe for your own inability to awaken.” When he passed away, he was simply working one day in his art studio. It was a set-apart space, not dissimilar to this. It actually had the walls and the space where he could actually do photo shoots and there could be specific music playing. He had high technology with a lot of artists and devotees and technicians coming on retreat and working with him to be able to manifest his visual art and the auditory art combined with the visual art. He was also working with a lot of writers and a lot of editors. Basically, the island was this incredible university of artists. Not only technically speak-ing, but also sacred artists serving the temples and the sacred grounds, as he always did. Huge numbers of people came around him, influx and outflow and influx and outflow. Thousands and thousands of beings have had this opportunity with him. At this time it wasn’t any different, yet the frustration of him confronting the resistance was excruciatingly painful. So much so that it was difficult for me personally to even hear about it, because I also knew synchronously exactly what needed to occur for it to completely be different. It was just paper thin.

JM: But you were relieved of all responsibility for changing it.

JA: I had no role, absolutely no role. I was continu-ing to fulfill the practice that I was given by him. As a matter of fact, Nick and I had bought a retreat property that could actually have the capability of housing Adi Da on this property. I came so close to inviting him in 2008 to come there at that time. To give him an opportunity for another refuge. But immediately when I would feel that I wanted to do that, to relieve him of that sense of frustration, [I got an] incredible sense of the forces which would come into my sphere of what would be required and the responsibility of it. Humbly, I wasn’t pre-pared. I didn’t even know who I would call on to help do this. How would I know? These are all the individuals that I know or ones that have worked with him so closely. So then I’d finally fall back.

He stayed there on the island doing this work intensively, communicating through a few devotees that I had been very intimate with through all the years around him. Then one day as he was working in his studio, lo and behold, he had just completed a work of art. He had finally done the cover page for the Aletheon, one of his final works. Later that day, he dropped the body. No drama, nothing happened. He was just in his studio and fell. He kept warning people prior to this, “If something doesn’t change, you can’t make use of me anymore. I have nothing more to give. I have nothing more to give. I’ve left it all to you. It’s all yours. You do what you will.” He dropped the body. Of course, people tried to resus-citate him, because we’d seen him have these kinds of yogi[c]…

JM: You talked about the earlier [incidents].

JA: Yeah. We had seen this kind [of thing]. I was called up by a male devotee, calling Nick and I say-ing, “Adi Da’s dropped the body again. He probably will come back.” We sort of assumed that might happen. He didn’t. Getting calls again, he’s not com-ing back. He’s not coming back. And finally it sunk in. He left. He left. It was traumatic. It was shocking. Because we never thought it would happen. I mean, we knew it would happen. But not then.

JM: You were not prepared.

JA: No. I felt it’s not complete. Or it doesn’t appear to be complete. Every devotee could describe some-thing unique for them in terms of the profundity of that moment for them. My response personally was that I immediately went back to a moment in 1976 (or so) when I was on the airplane with him and we were going to Hawaii. I was sitting next to him on the plane. We had this very simple con-versation when I think back on it. It’s so mundane. It’s ridiculous. We were talking about, what’s your favorite color? What’s your favorite animal? What would you do if the plane was about to crash and you knew we were going to die? He was posing these questions to me, which seemed like very sim-ple questions. And I said, “Well, probably maybe the color yellow and lions. I would probably, of course, give all my energy and attention to you and the pro-cess. In the moment of death, I would be given over in the spiritual process.” I asked him, “What would you do?” He said, “I would just continue reading my newspaper.”

That was what came to me. At that moment when he said that to me and when I remembered that in the moment of his passing, it was an ex-traordinary communication of no drama. You’re simply present and then you’re not. No reaction, no drama, no recoil, no fear. It’s going to occur and you just let go. It just is an inevitability. So I remembered that moment at the time of his passing and I could feel the angst of what was occurring. Then, of course, immediately: “What’s going to happen? What will devotees do in response?” I went home and I sat [and] entered into a meditation (vigil) for days, entering into the process of feeling the sig-nificance of what occurred. The principle thing I felt was a magnification of the divine self-position, the bright love bliss, magnified immensely so that there was the communication that there was no loss. Absolutely zero loss. Never left, never gone, al-ways present, always was present, the divine was always present as revealed, that divine light, not dependent upon his physical form. That certainty has always only been magnifying even in the midst of every possible test and challenge and seeming adversity. It’s constantly the magnification of that so long as there is no dissociation from life. It’s a complete paradox.

JM: As it occurs to me, you went through several 16-year phases, 16 years living with him, 16 years after you left his intimate company until his death. And now it’s been 16 years since his death. I gather what you’re telling me is that his presence has only grown stronger.

JA: Yes.

JM: And constant.

JA: Yes, constant. The precipice that I feel not only myself but as a seeming separate self, I feel so com-bined with the certainty of the psychophysics of our condition that humanity itself is at an incred-ible threshold of a transition of awakening. It’s a potential. But it entirely has to do with what our relationship to consciousness itself is. It is inter-esting to observe and feel that that is the field of focus in so many arenas of study and learning and experimentation and growth, this matter of con-sciousness, and who, what, and where is conscious-ness? What is its nature? How does it influence the material world? This is the reality awakening that’s necessary in order to not destroy the world funda-mentally, to not destroy one another, to cease the conflict in relationship to what is arising.

This precipice is not just a spiritual awaken-ing, like knowing that the world is psychophysical in nature. Like we’ve been speaking recently about the phenomena of realization that there are other dimensions of entities, and they cross over, that there’s an awareness between all different forms of incarnation and conscious awareness of differ-ent forms of vibratory incarnations. People are in upheaval about even the acknowledgement of that level of awakening. So that’s a really import-ant transition. Once a greater humanity is aware of that fact, then there is the possibility of moving into a more subtle or causal awareness of what consciousness is in relationship to manifestation as a whole. But the key necessity, though, even in the midst of all of that awakening, has to do with a fun-damental responsibility relative to not living cultic relationships that cause conflict in relationship to one another, as though we are threatened because we are separate beings. Therefore, in physical, emotional, mental, and sexual and psychophysical terms, we are troubled, at war, complicated, unable to even have an equanimous way of living with one another, being at peace with one another. If hu-manity can’t come to that point of feeling discrimi-nation, responsibility, “independence” in terms of being able to be responsible as a humanly mature being, available to keep growing in relationship to one another as a whole, then all of these subtleties of the religious and spiritual and transcendental process will not be accessible. That’s what I’m aware of in the midst of the education and opportunity that I’ve been given, and I don’t feel separate from it. There’s nothing that “I” can do independently. You can’t force it, you can’t superimpose anything on it to make it happen. All it is is just a vulnerability of living in a completely open disposition and trust the coinciding and allow the revelation of the di-vine self-condition, the bright, conscious light to be revealed and awakened. JM: Julie Anderson, what a lovely discourse.

JA: Thank you.

JM: We set out to talk about spirituality and death and I think we have accomplished that.

JA: Yes, thank you. Thank you.

JM: It has been heartfelt and inspirational. I’m so glad that you went to all of the trouble and ex-pense to come here to Albuquerque to share this story with me, Julie. Thank you so much.

JA: Thank you. 

JM: And for those of you listening or watching, thank you for being with us. You are the reason that we are here.