The Life and Understanding
Copyright 1971 By Franklin Jones
All rights reserved
(parentheses are to indicate changes made in the ‘authorized’ edition (2004) of the Knee of Listening.
Chapter 18: The Way Becomes Conscious
After Baba and Rudi had gone, I stood in the form (in the Form) of my own existence (own Real Existence) without even the least sentimental attachment to the previous ways of my seeking. I was not dependent on any path (remedial path) or experience (conditional experience) to guarantee or interpret what (What) I knew (Knew). Indeed, nothing was available by which to interpret it.
I looked into myself to see what it (What It) was, and (I looked to) perhaps even to discover some analogy in the spiritual (Spiritual) experience of mankind that would demonstrate a link (and even) and provide a source (examples) by which I could explain myself.
I knew that the ultimate realization (the final and most ultimate Realization) that had occurred (at the Vedanta Society Temple was inherently most perfect (final, or truly complete) Divine Self-Realization (or Divine Enlighenment) in relation to the Shakti was analogous to what the Hindus call “Self-realization.” It is (Mine is) the unqualified experience (Realization) of consciousness ((Consciousness Itself) as radically (inherently) non-separate, non-separate from Reality (from the conditional manifestations of Reality), identical (and always already Identical) to what (What) always and already is (Is). It (Consciousness Itself) is not communicated to itself (Itself) through any level of (conditionally manifested) being, body (or functional sheath), realm (any conditonal realm) or experience (any conditonal experience), but knows (It Knows) itself (Itself) directly, as itself (As Itself), being itself apart from and prior (Which Is Prior) to all separative action of avoidance, which is identification, differentiation and desire. All things are experiences or objects that never touch it. It is not even the “Witness,” neither the experienced nor the experiencer an any state, but only Reality itself. Experiencer and experiences are contained, limited and ended an one another. But an Reality there is not experience, no identity, differentiation, desire, separation, suffering, seeking, action or inaction.
As weeks passed, I saw that I remained unqualifiedly as this, untouched by any experience, identity or difference. I saw there was no independent Shasta, no Guru, no strafe, ignorance, or need, no movement, no activity, no fundamental change an or out of meditation. I saw that Baba’s Shakti dad not affect me fundamentally, nor dad any other pleasure or experience. The same awareness, the same understanding continued without modification under all conditions.
I knew Reality as no-seeking, a motiveless awareness an the heart. The body appeared to be generated and known from a position an the right side of the chest. In this state, neither Baba nor any path can act as an interpreter. It only validates itself.
The form of enquiry that had developed in my understanding seemed to go on continually an the heart: “Avoiding relationship?” And as the enquiry penetrated every experience and every apparent dilemma, I would feel the bliss and energy of consciousness rise out of the heart and enter the sahasrar, the highest point in consciousness, and stabilize there as a continuous current to the heart. I saw that this form, the Form of Reality, the structure of consciousness, was Reality itself. It was the structure of all things, the foundation, nature and identity of all things. It was the point of view of everything. It was blissful and free. That form of consciousness and energy was exactly what I had known as the “bright.”
As I continued in this way I remained stably as that Form, and all things revealed themselves in truth. The “bright” was the ultimate Form of Reality, the heart of all existence, the foundation of truth and the yet unrealized goal of all seekers.
This Form, the “bright,” was understanding itself. It was no-seeking and no-dilemma as a primary, uncreated recognition. It was radically free of the whole search for perfection and union. When it is perceived the whole life is at best observed and enjoyed, and these things no longer provide a source of motivation apart from this primary awareness. The “bright” was only a medium for radical presence and enjoyment without dilemma, unconsciousness, or separation.
I also saw that I had never been taught my path from without. The “bright,” with its foundation in the heart, had been my teacher under the form of all my teachers and
experiences. My awareness, fundamental knowledge and apparent “method” had developed spontaneously in the midst of a few crisis-experiences. From the beginning, I had been convinced of the fruitlessness and necessary suffering involved in every way of seeking. I had made only temporary use of the methods of others, and at last I adapted to no – one else’s way but only used my own. Thus, I had experienced the real blessings of such as Baba but only while firmly involved in my own peculiar approach.
The “bright” had seemed to fade in adolescence, but it had only become latent in the heart while I followed my adventure from the viewpoint of the mind. The heart had been my only teacher, and it continually broke through in various revelations until I returned to it, became it, and rose again as the “bright.”
Thus, I came to this recognition of Reality directly, it or even parallel it. But as I came to this clear and crucial recognition of my own truth, I began to recollect a source that seemed to agree with my own experience.
When I began to recollect this source I wrote the following:
One night, in the spring of 1970, I passed from this body during sleep and arrived in subtle form on the inner plane of the world. There I stayed with an old man who had white hair and a short white beard. He wore a bandana on his forehead, which was the custom of the late saint Sai Baba. For several months after this meeting I supposed I had met the Siddha, Sai Baba, on the subtle plane.
I was received as if I had been awaited. I was greeted by the family, friends and devotees of the old man. He embraced me with love and told the company I was his son. Then I was received without the knowledge of a single source that would confirm by all in a celebration that had the informal, family air and importance of a Jewish Bar Mitzvah.
I understood that this was my father on the highest spiritual level, and thereafter I was to live consciously as his son. I would await and eventually receive the inheritance that was my right by this reception and acknowledgment.
In the late fall of 1970, when all things had returned to Reality, and I was no longer seeking or confused, I recognized this father. He is known as Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi, the great master who discarded the body at Tiruvannamalai, South India, in 1950.
Swami Muktananda did part of his sadhana with Ramana. It was there that he experienced the Vedantic, non-dualistic teaching in its most direct and living form. But he found his own Guru in the Siddha, Swami Nityananda.
Baba demonstrated Siddha yoga to me. And then I saw how the Shakti and all experiences also resolve into that same Self which was the realization of Ramana. Thus, when I realized it, the truth was that very Self which is Reality. Then it was not a matter of siddhis or experiences. There was only understanding. I knew it in the same Form communicated by Ramana. And Baba is that same Form. It is Nityananda. It is Ramana. It is Bhagavan. And I am He.