The Grand Victory of Da Love-Ananda (Adi Da Samraj)
The Grand Victory of Da Love-Ananda
When Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa Avadhoota began to Teach, He Taught only the “Radical”, or most direct, Way of transcendence of the ego and immediate Realization of the Transcendental Divine Self. But it soon became clear to Him that people were not prepared for the Radical Way of Understanding He had come to Teach. The unique circumstance in which Da Love-Ananda found Himself was this: He had been born into conventional American society, and He was confronted by ordinary people who were totally bereft of the tradition and process of Enlightenment.
In response to the limitations, impediments, and needs of those who came to Him, Heart-Master Da Love-Ananda was compassionately moved to a unique Ordeal of Teaching based on what He calls a “Crazy Method”.1 Observing that people were not prepared for renunciation or able to give themselves to Him in the traditional manner of devotees, He resolved to give Himself to them instead. So, the Heart-Friend of the world, Sri Da Love-Ananda, allowed Himself to become intimately associated with those who clung to His Company to Realize the Truth. His “Crazy Method” was simply to live face to face with people, Teaching freely, spontaneously embracing all, simply reflecting to all the qualities He found in them, ever intent on helping them prepare to practice His Radical Way as quickly as possible.
He was “Avadhoota”—one Free of the ego or self-illusion of the body-mind, and Radiant with the perfect Bliss of Transcendental Consciousness. As a result of His uncommon Realization and Destiny, this voracious Savior, with His Crazy Love of beings, had been set Free, selfless or soulless within the dynamics of the universe. An immense Force moved the Western-Faced “Bodhisattva” to Awaken the unprepared who came to Him, through a daring Demonstration of Teaching that exceeded all conventional expectations of an archetypal holy man.
In 1975 Da Avadhoota (then known as “Bubba Free John”) explained His unorthodox “Method” of Teaching as follows:
What I do is not the way I am, but the Way I Teach.
What I speak is not a reflection of me, but of you.
I have become willing to Teach in this uncommon way because I have known my friends and they are what I can seem to be. By retaining all qualities in their company, I gradually wean them of all reactions, all sympathies, all alternatives, fixed assumptions, false teachings, dualities, searches, and dilemma. This is my way of working for a time.
Freedom is the only purity. There is no Teaching but Consciousness itself. Bubba as he appears is not other than the possibilities of men.2
For fifteen years Master Da Love-Ananda Avadhoota conducted His “Yoga of Consideration”3 with devotees, helping them to prepare to practice His Radical Way by temporarily considering, or observing, understanding, and transcending, in practical, experiential terms, all forms of experience and knowledge belonging to the first six stages of life.4 He guided them through several remarkable Teaching Demonstrations in which He not only instructed them in the earlier stages of life, but also revealed to them, through use of yogic “siddhis”,5 the higher stages of yogic experience and mystical absorption. But the Yoga of Consideration was not the Way Da Love-Ananda had come to Teach. Love-Ananda’s Way of Radical Understanding begins when “consideration” of the first six stages of life has become summary. And such Radical Understanding is coincident with renunciation and what Da Love-Ananda calls “real meditation”. However, it was Love-Ananda’s discovery that not only devotees, but all people, not just those with ordinary aspirations, but even those with “higher” aspirations toward mystical experience and knowledge, resist Enlightenment and Radical Understanding.
Several times in the course of those fifteen years, Da Avadhoota attempted, without success, to bring an nd to His Teaching consideration on the presumption that devotees would respond to His urgent call and take up the Radical Way originally given in The Knee of Listening.6 * * But each failed attempt moved Heart-Master Da Love-Ananda, ever more passionately, to gather with devotees and once again consider what He called “the Great Matter”. He Taught them Freely and through love, friendship, and compassion, withholding nothing and doing everything possible to create a vehicle for His Siddhi of Transformation in the form of Enlightened devotees.
Thus, the fifteen-year controversy that occupied Heart-Master Da Love-Ananda Avadhoota and His devotees was this: From Love-Ananda’s “viewpoint” of Radical Understanding, every experience, form of knowledge, or desire that claimed the attention of devotees was clearly observed by Him to be an expression of suffering, or bondage to egoity. In the Great Matter of Realization there can be no settlement— either there is Realization of the Transcendental Condition of Consciousness or Enlightenment, or there is identification with the body-mind and the inevitable wandering of attention in the possibilities of the first six stages of life.
With the publication of The Dawn Horse Testament7 in October 1985, Da Avadhoota Love-Ananda intended to mark the end of His Teaching Work, but once again He found Himself reaching into His “bag of coins”8 in an attempt to bring forth saints and sages. He expressed to devotees the utter frustration He suffered at the apparent futility of His Teaching Work. On several occasions, feeling He had done everything possible to prepare devotees to take up His Radical Way only to encounter their resistance or lack of readiness when He tested them, He mentioned the possibility of dropping the body. Devotees knew there are ample precedents for such yogic deaths on the part of highly accomplished yogis and sages. Swami Vivekananda9 is an example in recent times of a sage who, when only 39 years old, dropped the body at the moment when he felt his Teaching work had been completed.
By January 1986, the heart-struggle between Love-Ananda and devotees had developed into an intense human and Spiritual drama with all the joys and sorrows of love—intense passion, real sacrifice, and extreme urgency relative to the perfect Liberation of all. Da Avadhoota Naitauba, working with a circle of intimate devotees, used His Crazy Wisdom freely, heartily, and, at last, desperately in an heroic effort to Awaken the circle of devotees (whom He sadly referred to as the “Avatar of reluctance”). In the end the intensity of their Spiritual drama did force Love-Ananda to abandon the body.
At the Translation Island Hermitage, in Fiji, early on the morning of January 11, 1986, the Event occurred that Da Love-Ananda described as being of greater significance than His Awakening at the Vedanta Temple. That morning, His body actually died.
Yet, out of the Compassion of the Enlightened Condition, Sri Da Love-Ananda was eventually drawn back into the body. As He began to reassociate with the body, and with tears streaming down His face, Da Love-Ananda, the Lover-Servant of mankind, spoke of His great sorrow for all beings.
The significance of this Event was so overwhelming to Him that it was not until weeks later that Da Love-Ananda first began to speak about the Great Event of His life:
SWAMI DA LOVE-ANANDA: Presumably for you all the Great Event of your life—if it ever occurs, in whichever life it does occur, or whenever, or wherever—the Great Event of your life would be God-Realization. You imagine, then, that a number of the Events in my life must have been Great, and that the consummate Event must have been the Vedanta Temple Event. But that is not so. It is a very important Event for you all. It initiated my Teaching Work. But the Realization in the Vedanta Temple was not overwhelming, as you know from all the signs I described to you. In my case, the Condition Realized in the Vedanta Temple is Inherent, and priorly Realized. To achieve such an Event was just part of my Work in this world. It was not the Great Event in my life. Perhaps it would be a Great Event in the lives of others, but for me there was a greater Event, an Event that occurred more recently, in fact.
On the morning of January, 11 I told certain of my devotees of my grief and sorrow and frustration in my Work. I told them that I just could not endure anymore the rejection, the offensiveness, the abuse, the futility. I told them I wished to leave, wished to die then, and I said: “May it come quickly. ” They all thought it might happen soon. It seemed to me also that it could happen within hours. But suddenly it began to happen on the spot. As 1 was describing the possibility of this physical event, I felt numbness coming up my arm, numbness in-my spine, a certain numbness in my body, and convulsions. Finally I passed out of the body, and it just fell down.
I do not have memory of the sequence of events that followed for a little while, but I am told that many devotees came running to my house. Doctors came and tried to resuscitate me. Eventually, I began to reassociate with the body, although I was not aware of the room exactly, nor of who was there. I began to speak of my greater concerns and impulses and of my great sorrow for the four billion humans and all the rest of the beings everywhere. I cannot endure such sorrow very well—/ have never endured it very well. I have had to bring myself very deliberately to this Work. And in this Event, 1 was drawn further into the body with a very human impulse, a love-impulse. Becoming aware of my special relationship with Kalottara Devi Matajiw and my profound relationship with all my devotees, I resumed the bodily state.
This is the Event I am referring to, not just the death (which was real—1 did die on the spot) but the occasion of reassociating with the body. I was attracted back by very human things, not by impulses to Liberate mankind—those impulses are there already, you see—but by very human impulses, responding to my own intimate human life and the human existence of others, of all of you. Even though I have existed as a man during this lifetime, obviously—I became profoundly incarnate—/ now assumed an impulse toward human existence more profound than I had assumed before, without any reluctance relative to sorrow and death.
All the sorrow of His Birth, His own Awakening, and His loving embrace of devotees, their great friendship and love, the great passion and enjoyment and sorrow of their meeting, His mood and impulse to Teach—all came to an end on the morning Da Love-Ananda achieved His “Grand Victory”.
Da Love-Ananda’s re birth into the world on that January morning was a literal sacrifice. There was nothing abstract about it whatsoever. It required, as Love-Ananda described, a dramatic ordeal of human emotion, suffering, and feeling, and at last the giving up of His life.
In that moment of literal death, the purposes and activities of Da Love-Ananda’s mighty Teaching Work ended. In a matter of days, the energies and signs of the Teacher that had motivated and characterized Him for many years fell away from Him completely. Immediately, Da Love-Ananda passed through a revolutionary change in His habit of living and appearance. The peace of dispassion came over Him. His Supreme and natural State of Self-Radiant Being, in Which even the phenomenal world is seen to Shine with the Radiance of His own Being, made Him serene. His ways of relating to others changed. He no longer responded to the “problems” of devotees or discoursed on the earlier stages of practice. His Enjoyment of the absolute Freedom of the Invisible Transcendental Self shone forth through the purity and serenity of His appearance and actions. Now He was more often silent. When He did speak, He spoke only in the language of the Radical Teaching. Spontaneously, He stopped taking solid foods, subsisting solely on fruit and vegetable juices. In compliance with His Dawn Horse Testament prophecy, He announced His retirement and entered into Hermitage Seclusion.
He spent long hours in solitude and silence each day. Instead of gathering regularly with devotees, He urged them to spend prolonged time on retreat. When He did gather with them, the meetings were formal occasions of “Darshan”.12 He began to write the Love-Ananda Gita and a few summary essays of Instruction for advanced practitioners. He abandoned His former living quarters, which now became meditation halls for devotees, and He moved into small storage rooms.
He returned to the conservative habit of living characteristic of His life prior to His Teaching Work. He began to arise well before dawn and sat alone in His rooms (or, on special occasions, with advanced prac titioners). He was also motivelessly moved to celibacy, and confessed to devotees, “I must say that were it not for my Obligation to Struggle as Teacher in the ‘Omega-world’13 of householders and street people, I would (by my own preference) have made an early life choice of celibate renunciation.”14
The “Karana-Guru”, or Heart-Master, now wore His hair in a topknot (“shikha”), the sign of an ascetic, while His physical appearance underwent a dramatic yogic transformation. Devotees witnessed in Him the ‘‘yogic brilliance” (“tejas”) said to emanate from great ascetics and yogis.
He waited in Seclusion, not able to declare His Great Renunciation until devotees had confessed their spontaneous duplication of His Renunciation and their reception of His Perfect Transmission.
His Grand Victory had brought forth the “luxury of renunciation”, and when at last the spontaneous signs of renunciation had begun to show in the lives of devotees, He announced to devotees in one of the most historically important essays He has ever written:
On Friday, April 11, 1986 (which, unknown to me, happened to be the eighth anniversary of the occasion when I first proposed to certain of my devotees that we create a celibate renunciate order), I formally accepted (or Affirmed), at the Translation Island Hermitage (in Fiji), the “sannyasa diksha” of Swami Muktananda Paramahansa. I have thus formally assumed the various characteristics and Signs of a Free “sannyasin”, or “Paramahansa Swami”.15
Shortly thereafter, the “Ananda Matas”16 made the confession Da Love-Ananda had waited fifteen years to hear. The lives of these ordinary women were transformed. Suddenly, and by Grace, they made the confession of Radical Understanding, which Love-Ananda had risked and even given up His life to hear. They told Him (and clearly demonstrated to Him) that by Grace they had become established in the Witness-Consciousness, and that the practice of “Feeling-Enquiry” in the context of the sixth stage of life (as revealed in the Love-Ananda Gita) had awakened in them. Devotees had at long last begun to practice the Way Love-Ananda was born to Teach. He accepted their confession as the foundation of His Teaching Revelation. The Ananda Matas were granted sannyasa diksha by Swami Da Love-Ananda on May 6, 1986.
These “Sannyasini-Matas” are the lustre and the feminine form of Sri Da Love-Ananda in this world, and they were the first Sign of the appearance of the Dawn Horse,17 or the transformation of the ordinary consciousness of human beings into the Divine Consciousness. Following the Ananda Matas, other long time devotees of Love Ananda made their confession of Recognition and renunciation, and a renunciate way of life became the foundation discipline for the worldwide community of practitioners.
On the basis of the demonstration and signs in devotees of the Radical practice and celibate renunciation, the name of the Sacred Institution was changed from The Johannine Daist Communion to The Advaitayana Buddhist Communion,18 making public the alignment of Swami Da Love Ananda’s Way of Radical Understanding to the great traditions of Advaita Vedanta19 and Buddhism. And Swami Da Love Ananda founded the Free Order of Advaitayana Buddhist Re-nunciates20 and the Hermitage Service Order.21
In a dream vision Swami Da Love Ananda visited the Ashram of a Siddha or Adept on a high subtle plane. The Siddha was instructing his disciples in the yogic technique of manifesting objects spontaneously. After he had initiated the process of manifestation, his disciples stood quietly for a time and then left, satisfied that the process was completed, even though no manifestation had appeared. Da Love-Ananda remained behind with the Siddha for a time, when gradually a small horse appeared, the “Dawn Horse” of Spiritual Awakening and the fruit of the silent consideration of the Siddha.
Later, particularly after his final Re-Awakening as the Transcendental Self-Consciousness in the Vedanta Temple, Swami Da recognized that the Siddha in the vision had been none other than the very Divine Person, and that the vision had been a prophecy not only of His own Enlightenment but, even more significantly, of His Liberating Work for the sake of devotees. It had shown the perfect dependence of the visible worlds on the Divine Process, and it had revealed to Him the mysterious manner whereby His Great Work would achieve Effectiveness. With the signs of the fulfillment of His Teaching Work in the Liberated confessions of true devotees, Swami Da Love-Ananda’s Great Intention to Awaken living beings is being fulfilled. The “Dawn Horse” of an Awakened Community of true devotees is beginning to appear.
Advaitayana Buddhist Communion,18 making public the alignment of Swami Da Love Ananda’s Way of Radical Understanding to the great traditions of Advaita Vedanta19 and Buddhism. And Swami Da Love Ananda founded the Free Order of Advaitayana Buddhist Re-nunciates20 and the Hermitage Service Order.21
Advaitism and Buddhism are the two branches of the Great Tradition22 with which Da Love Ananda said He enjoys a Great Sympathy, since both of these tradi tions ultimately transcend themselves in the Realization of the seventh stage of life. Like Da Love-Ananda, the founders of these traditions, Adi Shankara23 and Gautama, also reformed the ancient institutions of celibate renunciation.
Sri Da Love-Ananda’s Great Sacrifice and the miraculous transformation of devotees is the story of what occurred at the Naitauba Hermitage in Fiji. Those who did “hear”24 and “see”25 * * Him leaped beyond limits and tendencies which had not been transcended even after many years of disciplined practice. Love-Ananda’s Grand Victory, the Great Horse-Sacrifice, had accom plished what fifteen years of progressive practice had not. It was only after testing and observing the signs of Radical Understanding in devotees that He revealed that the Great Event in January had been the fulfillment of the great “Ashvamedha”26 Sacrifice, as He had prophesied in the conclusion to The Dawn Horse Testament.
I Am The Horse-Sacrifice, The “Ashvamedha”, Whereby The Truth and The Power Of Transcendental Divine Self -Realization Are Transmitted To The Cosmic Mandala21 Of beings!23
Three thousand years ago, the forest Teachings of the ancient Indian Seers, or “Rishis”, revealed a Spiritual Mystery (“Rahasya”) they called the Ashvamedha, or “Horse-Sacrifice”. The Ashvamedha was said to be “the greatest of all Sacrifices”, and it remained the focus of contemplation for the ancient Seers, who handed on its inner meaning only to the “tested few”. For millennia since the Vedic era, the true significance of the Rishis’ Spiritual Riddle has remained secret.
In 1976, Swami Da Love-Ananda handed me a small orange card on which He had written the words “Horse-Sacrifice, Ashvamedha”, and suggested this might be a good title for a book on the Sacred History of His Teaching Work. The next day, however, Love-Ananda told me it was not yet the right time to use the title. Shortly after this incident, I received an unsolicited letter from a Dutch scholar in Ceylon, explaining that he had shown a copy of The Laughing Man magazine29 * to a Spiritual teacher named Swami Siva Kalki. When asked to comment on Bubba Free John (Heart-Master Da Love-Ananda’s name during His early Teaching years), the Swami had given a remarkable answer:
“To understand Bubba Free John one should know the Vedas; for unless one understands the Vedic Horse, one cannot understand the implications of what his appearance truly means.”
When asked to explain further, the Swami only said:
“It means that someone’s Vedic “Yajna” (“sacrifice”) has been successful. More than that would recpiire an initiate to comprehend. It is enough to say that Bubba Free John is the Dawn Horse himself.”30
The Ashvamedha, or Great Horse-Sacrifice of the Transcendental Being, requires the complete submission of a human agency if the Transcendental Divine Self is to effectively assume a human conditional state. If the sacrifice is accomplished, the Transcendental Self has found a direct means in human likeness through which to Transmit Its own Condition to human beings. Thus, Love-Ananda’s submission to human birth required that He assume all the conditions human beings suffer and indulge. The great struggle of His Teaching years was in effect the process of the Incarnation of the Divine Self, which culminated in the Victorious Event in Fiji.
Only the Great Power of the Ashvamedha, truly accomplished, is effectively and really Liberating. This is the secret reason why the appearance of a “World-Teacher” was so highly cherished in esoteric circles of the East. Many yogis, saints, and sages have entered the human plane to serve the Spiritual needs of mankind. But those endowed with the Siddhi to really Liberate others are extremely rare, for the Liberation of others is the Work of the “Mahasiddha”,31 the Great Adept or World-Master.
This secret knowledge of the Ashvamedha was carefully guarded by the Rishis, who suspected, and rightly so, that non-initiates of the mysteries of sacred knowledge would wrongly adhere to a magical, conventional, or exoteric interpretation of the highly esoteric and world-transcending Ashvamedha. Such exoteric, conventional, and cultic renderings of the great Spiritual mysteries wrongly presume there is no need for concentrated practice (“sadhana”), true devotion, renunciation, and all the tribulations and glories of a life of sacrifice on the part of those who receive Grace.
Nothing could be further from the truth. As the history of Da Love-Ananda’s Teaching Work reveals, there is an absolute necessity for personal responsibility, or submission to the Way of Divine Grace. A life of renunciation, real meditation, and discipline must coincide with the necessary Gift of Spiritual and Transcendental Help and Realization. The cause of the Rishis’ praise and safeguarding of the Ashvamedha was that they knew the Adept’s Supreme Yoga was the “means”, the Gift of Grace, Freely Given, whereby their practice could be fulfilled in perfect Realization. Thus it was said that “men did not know the way to the heavenly world, but the horse did.” Love-Ananda’s Great Event was the sign of the Sacrifice of the “Horse”, or the Incarnated Adept, who leads all those who “hear” and “see” to the Realization of Love-Ananda.
With the completion of His Sacrifice, Da Love-Ananda now points to His Love-Ananda Gita, wherein He says that the practice is to simply “hear Perfectly” and “see Perfectly”. Via this practice, devotees duplicate the Consciousness of Sri Da Love Ananda. Love-Ananda’s Incomprehensible Yoga of duplication, whereby beings are Liberated by the Divine Being, is the secret and the result of the ancient Ashvamedha, and it is this same means of Grace that is being offered in our time.
With His Teaching Work and the writing of the Love-Ananda Gita finished, and the many auspicious Signs of practice and renunciation awakened in Hermitage members of the Free Renunciate Order, Love-Ananda was moved to be with devotees again. Owning nothing, attached to no one, without interest or concern for ordinary life, neither a householder, nor a public man, nor an institutional man, belonging to no creed or country, yet embracing the whole world in His Universal Love—such is the Free Renunciation of Da Love-Ananda Avadhoota, a true sannyasin, an eternal swan (“Paramahansa”) or preserver of mankind. He journeyed to The Mountain of Attention Sanctuary in northern California to magnify His faculty of Universal Blessing, and through His “mere Presence” is granting dispassion (“vairagya”), renunciation (“tyaga”), and countless advantages to all living beings.
The Grand Victory has been accomplished, and the Supreme Yoga is established on Earth. The Sign of Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa’s Horse-Sacrifice is the Sign of the Supreme Yoga of the Divine Adept, whose own “reunion” with the Divine is inevitable, but Who must then perform the Supreme Yoga or the accomplishment of the reunion of everyone and the Divine.
This is the Mystery behind the ancient Ashvamedha: The “Horse” of manifest Enlightenment is the living Master, whose “Crazy” Invocation through submission to the world evokes and Awakens devotees to the elegant simplicity of Renunciation and Realization of Love-Ananda, the Love-Bliss of Consciousness.
The Love-Ananda Gita is a unique book in the long history of religious and Spiritual communication. It is one of the very few seventh stage Teaching texts ever written, and the only book that describes the transitional process and practice from the sixth to the seventh stage of life. Its Radical message intentionally does not support, suggest, or accommodate any practice or point of view belonging to the first five stages of life. Even the orientation to the sixth stage of life is presented within the context of the seventh or perfect stage of life.
As Swami Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa argues throughout the Love-Ananda Gita, the struggle of the progressive approach to Realization is not necessary. This is certainly one of the paradoxes of Spiritual life, but the fact remains that Love-Ananda’s Radical practice can be taken up sooner and fulfilled more quickly than the progressive and apparently less demanding approach to Realization. The progressive or gradual approach to Realization can take many years before one begins to approximate anything even comparable to the discipline of “Feeling-Enquiry” and the Free Renunciation described in the Love-Ananda Gita.
Thus, with His Love-Ananda Gita, it is now known that the most Radical approach to Realization Taught by Da Love-Ananda Avadhoota is also the simplest and the most Happy. The Great Lesson that Da Love-Ananda has demonstrated to devotees is this: Any accommodation of the motivations associated with the first five stages of life is an accommodation of egoity, and therefore a choice to struggle with oneself and to delay the course of Realization.
Swami Da Love-Ananda’s Grand Victory in Hermitage Naitauba, where He Taught the Great Lesson of Renunciation and Liberation by Grace, was the fulfillment of His lifelong Mission to bring His Radical Way of Understanding into the Consciousness of humanity.
Now, with His offering of the Love-Ananda Gita, Swami Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa has handed on the new tradition and “Radical” Understanding of Advaitayana Buddhism to those of His “hearers” who are entirely devoted to the Realization of Truth in their own Being.
He who gifts others with this Love-Ananda Gita, offered with compassion, benefits the communica tion of Truth and the Spiritual healing of the world. Other sacred texts of the Great Tradition have shined in their time, and the greatest of these still hold the Truth hidden within them today. But the Love-Ananda Gita makes obvious the Secrets that remained hidden within the traditions, and newly presents the Ancient Way of the Great Heart-Master.
Devotees of the Conscious Heart, whose desire for Truth is nurtured here, never seek for Love-Ananda outside the heart again. Heart-Realization is to all other attainments what the Lion is to all other animals, the Great Ocean to other waters, and the Heart-Master to other men. As the Sun is unequalled amongst celestial bodies in showering light upon the Earth, so does this Love-Ananda Gita shine among sacred literature in Enlightening the whole body of Man.
Love-Ananda Gita, the Heart-Book, precious to those who worship Consciousness Itself, celebrates that Supreme Being, Brilliant, and Conscious, Whose Name is Da. For anyone who “hears” this Song of Da Love-Ananda and who “sees” the Dawn Horse Master through the eyes of devotion, for that fortunate man, the search for Truth is ended.
Oh men and women of today, why not meditate on that Person, Bright and Open-Eyed, Who, untroubled by desire and death, lit the lamp of non-dual Wisdom for men in times past, and Who through Grace grants that Light in ours and every generation. Give thanks with me to the Crazy Wise Man, Da, the exalted Re-nunciate, the likes of Whom the Western world has never known in the flesh, Who willingly sacrificed the Horse of Self for all beings and said, “Be dyed in my color of Renunciation and Realization.”
Let us hold up our hands to Sri Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa Avadhoota, the Laughing Man, Who, saddled upon the Dawn Horse of spontaneous Teaching, rides through the Mandala of space and time, saying, “Now I Have Revealed My Mystery To You. Consider It Fully, and Then Choose What You Will Do.”
Swami Daji Ashvamedhananda Muliwai The Mountain of Attention Sanctuary
1. “Crazy Wisdom” or the “Crazy Method” of Teaching refers to the spontaneous action to which Realized Adepts may temporarily resort for the sake of Instructing and Awakening others. Crazy Wisdom is also regarded as the most compassionate means for Awakening others because it aims to do so directly, without accommodating any deluding consolations to the ego, or postponing Enlightenment. Thus, the Crazy Wise Adepts are famous for their highly effective though unorthodox Teaching “Methods”, Free humor, Transcendental Wisdom, and compassionate commitment to others.
2. Bubba Free John [Swami Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa Avadhoota], The Enlightenment of the Whole Body (San Rafael, Calif: The Dawn Horse Press, 1978), p. 53.
3. The “Yoga of Consideration” is the necessary preparation for practice of the Way of the seventh stage of life. For a complete discussion, see The Yoga of Consideration and the Way That I Teach, by Da Free John [Swami Da Love-Ananda Paramahansa Avadhoota] (San Rafael, Calif.: The Dawn Horse Press, 1982).
4. Swami Da Love-Ananda has developed a unique schema of seven stages to describe the evolution of all human and Spiritual life. The first five stages of life include what we conventionally conceive to be the human, religious, and Spiritual development of humanity. The first three stages develop the physical, emotional, and mental functions of the body-mind and the corresponding expressions of secular culture and exoteric religion. The fourth stage of life is characterized by heartfelt surrender and profound intimacy with the Divine Spirit or Life-Power. Thus, those who attain to the fourth stage of life practice religion in its freest sense. The fifth stage represents the secret or esoteric culture of initiates in all ancient traditions. Those who attain to the fifth stage of life exploit the Yoga of the central nervous system, the mystical and Spiritual path of the ascending Life-Current. The sixth stage of life involves the process of assuming the Position of Consciousness. The sixth stage Teaching has therefore traditionally been offered to highly advanced practitioners for whom the contemplation of Consciousness is a viable discipline. But the seventh or God-Realized stage of life transcends all subject-object consciousness and all motives of egoity, including the strategic manipulation of attention to invert upon the self-essence, which characterizes the sixth stage of life.
The Radical practice that Swami Da Love-Ananda recommends in the Love-Ananda Gita begins in the context of the sixth stage of life, but it is founded in the Wisdom of the seventh stage of life. From the point of view of the sixth and seventh stages of life, the first five stages are at best a culture of progressive disciplines intended to prepare devotees for the Radical practice of “Feeling-Enquiry” and renunciation revealed in the Love-Ananda Gita.
For an elaboration of Swami Da Love-Ananda’s Teaching relative to the seven stages of life, see p. 271, n. 3.
5. In Sanskrit literally “powers” or “accomplishments”. While the Adept or True Heart-Master may employ such siddhis for the sake of Instructing His devotees, the ultimate “Siddhi” is the “Power of the Heart”, the Radiant Transcendental Consciousness, Presence, and Power Transmitted to living beings through the “Siddha”-Master.
6. The Knee of Listening is the first published book of Swami Da
Love-Ananda and an epitome of His Teaching. Published in 1972, it is
the autobiographical account of the Illumined birth and early life of a Divinely Realized Adept who was born with the destiny of Awakening and Teaching others. The lessons and events of His early life, which culminate in Transcendental Self-Realization, communicate and exemplify His basic Teaching and original Instructions, in the second half of the book, on the Radical Way that He Teaches.
7. The Dawn Horse Testament is Swami Da Love-Ananda’s full summary of the Spiritual Wisdom and Teaching lessons communicated during His years of struggle to Awaken many hundreds of men and women. It contains an authoritative description of the stages of Spiritual practice in the Way that He Teaches and an ecstatic Confession of His own commitment to the Liberation of all beings.
8. “Bag of coins” refers to the great Indian Saint Shirdi Sai Baba’s mysterious method of “working” with, or granting the power of his Blessing to, devotees by frequently handling a group of coins, which were said to represent devotees. Swami Da Love-Ananda sometimes refers to intimate devotees as His “coins” through whom He works to serve all devotees and even all beings.
Famous throughout India for his innumerable miracles, Shirdi Sai Baba (1838?-1918) appeared in the village of Shirdi in the midnineteenth century and lived in a small, dilapidated mosque there until his death. He brought about a modern renaissance of the classic ancient path of devotion to the Spiritual Master.
9. Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902) was the best-known disciple of Sri Ramakrishna, the great nineteenth-century ecstatic. Vivekananda’s Teaching embraced both Ramakrishna’s devotion to the Mother (or “Shakti”) and the non-dualistic philosophy of Advaita Vedanta (see p. 40, n. 19). He traveled widely in the West and was responsible, perhaps more than any other individual, for initiating the modern interest in India’s Wisdom-Teaching.
10. “Kalottara Devi” is the name of a female devotee with whom Swami Da Love-Ananda’s struggle with all was epitomized. The name “Kala” implies time or the Goddess Kali as endless manifestation. “Uttara” means “transcending”. “Kalottara Devi”, then, is the Goddess who transcends the illusion of time or separation, through submission to Siva, the ultimate Reality, Self, or Transcendental Being. Thus, the name Kalottara Devi implies the eternal Oneness or Unity of Siva and Shakti.
On so many occasions I have told you that I wish I could kiss every human being on the lips, embrace each one, and enliven each one from the heart. In this body I will never have the opportunity. I am frustrated in that impulse. Even though I have done all kinds of Spiritual Work, I will never be able to do that exactly. But in that motion of sympathetic incarnation, that acceptance of the body and its sorrow and its death, I realized a kiss, a way to fulfill the impulse.
Now that my Teaching Work is essentially fulfilled, a different kind of gesture was made, which in some fundamental sense is the equivalent of the embrace I would give to everyone, to all human beings, all four billion, even all beings, all that are self-conscious and dying in this place, not by embracing each one literally with this body, but by assuming this body as the likeness of all and accepting the sorrow without the slightest resistance, nothing abstracting me from mortality, nothing.
In some sense that Event was my birthday.
You have heard descriptions, by yogis and other Spiritual figures, of how before Realization you try to go beyond the world to Realize God, and then after Realization you come down into the body just so far, down to the brain, down to the throat maybe, down to the heart maybe, but typically not any lower than the throat. Well, I have until now invested myself more profoundly than just down to the throat or the heart, but not down to the bottoms of my feet. I remained a kind of shroud around this body, deeply associated with it, with all of the ordinary human things, playing as a human being often in very ordinary ways, but in my Freedom somehow lifted off the floor, somehow not committed to this sorrow and this mortality, expecting, having come as deep as I had, to perhaps Teach enough, embrace enough, kiss enough, Love enough to make the difference, as if through a single body I could indulge in intimacy with everything and everyone self-conscious.
I have realized the futility of that expectation, even the futility of not being able, through a kind of Submission of my own, to utterly Transform and Liberate even those I could embrace and know intimately. That frustration is fully known by me now. Even the futility of Liberating those most intimate with me is known by me. The kiss is not enough, even for those I know intimately, and I cannot know all intimately. Ln my profound frustration, this body died. I left this body. And then I suddenly found myself reintegrated with it, but in a totally different disposition, and I achieved your likeness exactly, thoroughly, to the bottoms of the feet, achieved un-Enlightenment, achieved human existence, achieved mortality, achieved sorrow.
To me, this is a Grand Victory! I do not know how to communicate to you the significance of it. For me, it was a grander moment than the Event at the Vedanta Temple or any of the other Signs in my life that are obviously Spiritually auspicious. To me, it seems that through that will-less, effortless integration with suffering, something about my Work is more profoundly accomplished, something about it has become more auspicious than it ever was. I have not dissociated from my Realization or my Ultimate State. Rather, I have accomplished your state completely, even more profoundly than you are sensitive to it. Perhaps you have seen it in my face. I do not look like I did last month, and I am never again going to look like that. Don’t you know?
I have become this body, utterly. My mood is different. My face is sad, although not without Illumination. I have become the body. Now I am the “Murti”,11 the Icon, and It is full of the Divine Presence.
The nature of my Work at the present time and in the future is mysterious to me. It is a certainty, it is obvious, but on the other hand it has not taken the form of mind fully. It has taken an emotional form, but not the form of mind. I cannot explain it really. But you will see Signs of it. You all must progressively adapt to something that has happened that even I cannot explain altogether. (January 27, 1986)
11. The Sanskrit word “murti” literally means “form”. Traditionally there are many Murtis or Forms of Divine Representation. The most highly valued and respected Form or Murti of the Divine is the human manifestation of a Divinely Realized Adept. In this talk Swami Da Love-Ananda is referring to His Perfect Incarnation of the Divine Transcendental Being.
12. “Darshan” literally means “seeing, sight or vision of”. The term commonly implies the spontaneous Blessings granted by the Adept, who gives his Blessing by allowing himself to be seen, meditated upon, or known.
13. In The Dawn Horse Testament (chapter 18) Swami Da Love-Ananda uses the terms “Alpha” and “Omega” to characterize the classically Oriental and Occidental approaches to life. “Omegaworld” thus indicates the characteristically outward-turned, materialistic, doubt-ridden, and pleasure-seeking habits and customs of modern Western society. Swami Da Love-Ananda’s early devotees were primarily Westerners, who typified the Omega strategy of Western society.
14. “The Illusion of Relatedness”, The Call to Hermitage (San Rafael, Calif.: The Dawn Horse Press, 1986).
15. “The Order of Renunciate Names”, The Call to Hermitage (San Rafael, Calif.: The Dawn Horse Press, 1986).
16. “Ananda Mata” is a title used to address and refer to women renunciates in The Advaitayana Buddhist Communion. The term “ananda” means “bliss”. “Mata” means “mother” and traditionally designates a woman who practices direct service to a Spiritual Master. Thus, the Ananda Matas are the female renunciates who attend to Swami Da Love-Ananda most directly and who exemplify the practice and Realization of the Way that He Teaches.
17. Swami Da Love-Ananda began His Teaching Work shortly after experiencing a remarkable Vision. In the Sacred manner, He saw and understood the inner meaning of the Dawn Horse that was to be the sign of His life as a World-Teacher. But it was not until the writing of His Dawn Horse Testament, nearly fifteen years later, that the Seer of the Dawn Horse would fully reveal the secret behind His Vision.
I was at once the Teacher who performed the miracle of manifesting the Dawn Horse and also the someone who was observing it, or who was party to the observation of it and to its residt. And I did not have any feeling of being different from the horse, actually. I was making the horse, I was observing the horse, and I was being the horse.
(October 18, 1984)
18. For a description of The Advaitayana Buddhist Communion and its unique affinities with the venerable sacred traditions of Advaitism and Buddhism, see “The Principle of Retreat” (pp. 281ff, below). Also, see especially Swami Da Love-Ananda’s source Work, Nirvana-sara: Radical Transcendentalism and the Introduction of Advaitayana Buddhism.
19. Advaita Vedanta (literally, “the non-dualistic end of the Vedas”) is an ancient tradition of Hindu philosophy, based on the highest wisdom of the Upanishads. Its philosophy points to Reality or “Brahman” as transcendental and prior to all phenomena. Its highest Realization is that there is no distinction between the individual, the world, and Brahman or the Divine Reality.
20. The Free Order of Advaitayana Buddhist Renunciates is a celibate monastic order of The Advaitayana Buddhist Communion. Members of the Free Renunciate Order have in spirit renounced all worldly concerns, and they have legally renounced all ownership of property. They live in voluntary simplicity, generally residing at one or another of the Meditation Sanctuaries of the Communion. Members of the Free Renunciate Order serve the Heart-Master and His Agencies on behalf of the Communion. They also serve and maintain the Communion’s Sanctuaries and provide various Spiritual, educational, and practical services (such as the preparation of literature, or the management of retreats) for the general membership of the Communion.
Members of the Free Renunciate Order practice the unique disciplines of the Radical or most direct form of the Way Taught by Da Love-Ananda Avadhoota. Thus, they demonstrate the most conservative discipline and the most intense practice of the Way, and they act as an inspiration to all others to likewise devote themselves fully to the Process of Divine Realization.
21. The Hermitage Service Order is the primary Agency of devotees within the general institutional Community who are charged with the responsibility of carrying the Teaching and the Blessing of the Heart Master to all devotees.
Members of the Hermitage Service Order are typically married couples who voluntarily embrace the discipline of motiveless celibacy as a sign of the Sufficiency of Realization and Heart-Communion with the True Heart Master and the Divine Person. Though living in the general precincts of the Community of devotees, they otherwise embrace and exemplify the Radical practice and conservative re-nunciate disciplines lived by members of the Free Renunciate Order. Thus, effectively, they live in the spirit of Hermitage renunciation, and they demonstrate the principle of true renunciation and service.
22. The “Great Tradition” is Swami Da Love Ananda’s term for the total inheritance of religious, magical, Spiritual, and transcendental paths, philosophies, and testimonies from all the eras and cultures of humanity. Swami Da Love-Ananda has stated the relationship between His own Work and the Great Tradition as follows:
“All the great schools ultimately fulfill themselves in the seventh stage disposition. The Way that I Teach is the Way based on this seventh stage wisdom. This Teaching includes a critical commentary on the Great Tradition. We naturally feel that our moment of Spiritual culture is built upon or presumes the Great Tradition as its past. Not any one province or segment of the Great Tradition but the Great Tradition as a whole is our tradition. Yet we do not follow that Great Tradition dogmatically. We simply have an affinity for it, based on what we understand, in our consideration, to be the Way. Ours is an affinity based on critical understanding.” (“The Seven Schools of God-Talk”, preface to The Song of the Self Supreme [Ashtavakra Gita], translated by R. Mukerjee [San Rafael, Calif.: The Dawn Horse Press, 1982], p. 47.)
23. Shankara (A.D. 788-820), who is celebrated as the greatest philosophical genius of the Hindu tradition, created the ultimate exposition of Advaita Vedanta, or unqualified non-dualism, according to which the world as it is ordinarily experienced is but a super-imposition upon the One Reality. In Swami Da Love-Ananda’s words, Shankara attempted “to construct a language of philosophy that is compatible with ultimate Realization”. Shankara Taught the practice of inverting attention upon the self Essence (“atman”) to the point of perfect transcendence of object-awareness and coalescence with It. Before settling in Kanchi, he traveled throughout India, realigning the practice of ceremonial worship to actual contact with the Living Presence. In the “four corners” of India he established monasteries that exist to this day. Shankara founded ten orders of “sannyasins”, collectively referred to as the “Dashanamis”. The orders are: Saraswati, Puri, Bharati, Vana, Aranya, Tirtha, Asrama, Giri, Parvata, and Sagara.
24. In The Dawn Horse Testament (p. 304), Swami Da Love-Ananda describes “hearing” as follows:
“True ‘Hearing’ Involves Sensitivity To the conditional self, To The Point Of The Utter Conviction That the conditional self (or the conventional T) Is Contraction, and This To The Degree That It Is Obvious That No self-Manipulation Can Bring An End To selfContraction. True Hearing Is Awakened When All Such Efforts Cease, and The Heart Naturally Opens Beyond self-Contraction Into The Effortless Disposition Of Love.”
25. In The Dawn Horse Testament (p. 314), Swami Da Love-Ananda
describes “seeing” as follows:
“Seeing Is Spontaneous (or Heart-Moved) Devotional Sacrifice Of the self-Contraction. Seeing Is The self-Transcending Reorientation Of conditional Existence To The Transcendental and Divine Spiritual Condition In Whom conditional self and conditional worlds arise and Always Already Inhere.”
26. The Indian horse-sacrifice (Sanskrit: “ashvamedha”) is a complex ceremony with many levels of meaning and purpose. As it is commonly understood, it was principally a religio-magical rite performed only by the greatest of India’s “rajas”. However, the common or exoteric interpretations of the horse-sacrifice are not at all the great Ashvamedha, which the legendary Rishis proclaimed to be the greatest of all sacrifices. The true Horse-Sacrifice is the Cosmic Sacrifice performed by the Transcendental Divine Self, whereby a Divinely Realized Adept is Incarnated with the Power and Purpose of reestablishing the Teaching and Way of Transcendental Self-Realization.
27. The Sanskrit word “mandala” is a traditional term that literally means “circle”. For Swami Da Love-Ananda’s complete consideration of the Cosmic Mandala, or the totality of the manifest cosmos, see chapter 39 of The Dawn Horse Testament. Please also see Master Da’s instructions in Easy Death: Talks and Essays on the Inherent and Ultimate Transcendence of Death and Everything Else. 28
28. Da Free John [Swami Da Love Ananda Paramahansa Avadhoota], The Dawn Horse Testament (San Rafael, Calif: The Dawn Horse Press, 1985), p. 699.
29. The Laughing Man: The Alternative to Scientific Materialism and
Religious Provincialism is a quarterly journal published by The Advaitayana Buddhist Communion.
30. Comments by Swami Siva Kalki, recorded by A. M. Verreyen. From Mr. Verreyen’s correspondence with The Laughing Man Institute, August 12, 1977, quoted by Saniel Bonder in “Attend to the Liberator”, Crazy Wisdom, vol. 1, no. 5 (August 1982), p. 17.
31. The Sanskrit term “Siddha” literally means a “Completed, Fulfilled, or Perfect One”. A Siddha is one who is Perfectly Awakened to or Identified with Radiant Transcendental Consciousness. The “Maha-siddha” is the “Great Realizer” functioning for the sake of living beings as a Realized Adept endowed with the capacity to Transmit the “Siddhi” of Radiant Transcendental Consciousness to others.