The following is from Paradox of Instruction, Identifcation of the Beloved is the Principle of Spiritual Life.
A talk by Bubba Free John (Adi Da Samraj), December 8, 1976.
here is virtually no limit to the delusions that human beings can presume on the basis of their tendencies, their desiring, their motivation, their reactions to experience. Because this is so, individuals eventually step out of the stream of conventional relations. In other words, they at some point cease to act or live on the basis of the ego-soul, the experiential self, and they establish instead a sacred relationship by which they are relieved of the implications of this birth. Our meeting with one another each of you individually with me is of this kind. It is not a conventional relationship which we are here merely to dramatize with one another, you with me or you with one another. We are here to be lifted out of that destiny. Therefore, your relationship with me must be of a sacred nature. It must involve an entirely different kind of discipline than the usual life presumes. Your relationship to me in itself implies a commitment to the essential Teaching or consideration which is part of my communication with you. Apart from this sacred process that our relationship implies, the only thing we can possibly realize in one another’s company is suffering and delusion, which as you see is what the usual man realizes.
Identification of the Beloved – Part 1
In all my years of teaching work it has been a constant struggle to maintain this quality in our relationship. It is constantly my obligation to eliminate what stands in the way, what makes your approach to me a conventional one, what makes your response to me conventional, egoic, ordinary. And this is a great and very difficult task. It requires your whole life.
Your obligation personally is this matter of practice, enjoying the sacred occasion of our relationship. I must find a way to make that workable in this world, to maintain a communication to you, to keep myself available to you, to be able myself to stay out of the usual games of life so that I am available under circumstances that are free of conventional associations. I myself and Vision Mound Ceremony should survive by the gifts and general support of those who respond to this Teaching, those who enjoy this relationship with me. Gifts and other support that people give on the basis of this meeting should serve the specific purposes of Vision Mound Ceremony. There are essentially two purposes: One is to maintain the communication that comes out of my Company, and the other is to provide household and other circumstances in which I can be kept available to people. And that is basically it. Vision Mound Ceremony performs these two functions through the gifts and general support of those who respond. It shouldn’t be obliged to organize those who respond into some other or independent worldly gathering, such as community businesses, that will then enable it to survive. There is no such obligation implied in our meeting.
Part of the apparently conventional nature of our connection is the threat of separation and death. This body dies. That body dies. We can rejuvenate, feel better, live longer, but, even so, in this world everybody dies. That is why we do spiritual practice, because we are conscious of the destiny of separation. We are willing to fulfill the law of love, but on the other hand what we love dies. That is the paradox of this place, and that is what makes it a hell. That is why this is one of the realms of suffering. This world is not a heaven. This is not a place of fulfillment. Thus, we must yield to the true Condition. We must not become dependent upon the conventional aspect of our relations. We must recognize our relations. We must identify the Condition of the loved one. You must recognize or identify me in Truth. Our relationship must be a spiritual one. That does not mean that we will not see one another, or that we cannot have occasion to carry on human relations face to face. But the vital dependency and demand that is based on the fear of separation is something that must be undone through this matter of spiritual practice, through this intuitive recognition.
You must become established in the real Condition, or you will never be satisfied. You will be driven to all kinds of preoccupation’s and great schemes, trying to become victorious or immortal, for immortality’s own sake, simply because you cannot deal with the fact of death. But death is an absolute message in this realm. It obliges us to recognize or identify one another in Truth, and we are not relieved of that obligation in this place.
It is not a matter of seeing me face to face twenty-four hours a day. Nobody does that. You must truly live the spiritual Condition of our relationship. You must lead a spiritual life in the world. You must fall into this Condition that precedes all conditions. You must enjoy your relationship to me in the form of meditation, the form of that sacrifice, because no form of our conventional and ordinary relations, our ordinary contact, ultimately satisfies in itself. And if your approach to me is a conventional one, you will be making use only of the ordinary forms of our possible relationship, and all those forms pass. All those forms make you anxious. You must realize a form of relationship to me in Ignorance, in which you recognize or identify me in the form of the very Condition of this world, your own Condition, so that when we are face to face it is that intuitive identification that you are involved with, not all the kinds of worldly anxiety such as lovers might feel for one another in the face of death. They love one another and yet they are going to be separated. That is the conventional nature of relationship. The kinds of lovers that can be separated are just the image of suffering, the pair. Lovers must become a paradox, a single Condition, not a cult of two. Our relationship must become a paradox, a spiritual matter, in which we are all given up to the Condition that precedes all this madness.
This world literally is being dreamed at this moment. It has no force except insofar as we live by reaction, merely by experience, on the basis of what appears or comes across to us in the dream. We tend to make our philosophy, our way of living, out of the dream, out of the limitation that arises here, which we cannot account for. Our life must cease to take that form. You cannot make philosophy out of this world and succeed. You would just be crazy all your life, and you would die anyway. You cannot make your way of life out of this experience here as it appears, this dream. No, you must recognize it, truly identify it. You must be awake relative to this experience. You must enjoy the release that a person enjoys upon waking in the morning from his or her dreams the night before. You must identify the Truth of the dream, which is to recognize, to know again, intuitively to penetrate all the conventional forms of the dream, which in themselves are illusory, passing. That is what spiritual practice is all about. That is what the spiritual process is all about: being relieved, ultimately, of the force of this experience, this condition, this limitation, this dream here.
You are liberated from that in the process of our relationship, but only if you are related to me truly, sacredly, spiritually, only if your relationship to me is simply one of sacrifice, of natural orientation, not all the reactive things you get into on the basis of it in the conventional way. Then the play between us serves this intuitive recognition, this identification of the Condition of all conditions. But you must yield constantly, because as soon as you become involved in your ordinary life by reaction, you separate yourself and become involved again in the illusion of experience arising here.
It is a maddening experience, this place. It is attractive in all kinds of ways. Equal to the force of all of its attractiveness is the force of all of the destruction of the Beloved. All the forms of the Beloved rot in this place. They come to an end, they are taken away. That is the truth about it, and there is no way around it. You must confront that. That is the way it is here. This is not heaven. This is not the world of the Beloved, of the loved one in any form you may recognize as the Loved One. This is a dream play on the Beloved, in which the Beloved appears in shapes and forms that are fleeting, that are binding in themselves. They attract you, and then they are withdrawn and leave you with only the craving. Left with the craving only, you are cycled back again and again into the same dimension as that experiencing reaction.
So you must recognize, truly identify, the Beloved appearing here in all this attraction, which means you must enter into a spiritual process in your living rather than the conventional attempts to survive, to win, to live forever. If you become truly committed to the spiritual process, in a relatively short time you literally pass out of the limitation in which you now conceive of this world. But you must utterly surrender. You must give up everything for that, for what you recognize, for that Truth, that Condition, the Condition of the very current of your own being. Give yourself up to it entirely. Allow it to create the event of the dream. The dream is its business. You will notice it stops playing the dream the way it seems to be playing it now. Now you are turned on to the Beloved as if to a whore, a fancy dancer. She has a little bit of extra seductiveness now. I was out here in the yard with some of you a few minutes ago, and we played this game of looking up in the night sky for something extraordinary. Some weird unidentified thing has got to be flying around in order to make us feel a little light, a little wonder. And yet you cannot account for any of it. The mere existence of any of it at all is sufficient mystery. All the rest of it is fancy dancing, a little twirler put on the end of her pasties. The woman herself, the universe itself, is sufficient mystery. We do not need all the extra attractions, and yet the woman herself, the lover himself, the universe itself as it appears here, is itself fancy dancing. It is unnecessary. It bewitches you, it beguiles you, it attracts you into a whole way of life, and yet it is fleeting, temporary, just a costume, a bit of business. It is not the Beloved herself, himself, itself. You must identify the Truth of what is attractive.
Thus, in your relationship to me, the matter of intuitive recognition must become the principle of our play. You must recognize me in the form of your Condition, the Condition of all this arising, the real Condition of it, the Condition of conditions, the Condition of the body, the mind, the self sense, the very current of the being, and be rested in It constantly. When you do that, the Beloved takes off her garment. Her true Form, his true Form, the Beloved’s true Form begins to appear. That true Form is not transitory. But you must be adapted to the loving of the Beloved in eternal Form, because you do not have desires fitted to that Form at the present time. The desires you have are all products of adaptation to this limiting illusion of attractions. You are turned on by bangles and flesh. All this appearance is how you are attracted to the Beloved in this form here. Having recognized it, though, giving yourself up to the true Condition of this, your very Nature, then your desiring or the movement of the being itself becomes capable of enjoying the Beloved in eternal Form. Only in that case are you satisfied.
All else is suffering. There is no doubt about it. There is absolutely no ultimate relief in the dream. So our play with one another cannot be based simply on this conventional attraction. It cannot be limited, in other words, to the natural, human dimension of our intimacy with one another. It must be sacred. It must be a spiritual relationship. It must be founded in this Ignorance. You must recognize me in Truth. You must do this practice. You must enter into this real meditation and give up everything for the Beloved. In that case our ordinary human relations become pleasurable, because they are not necessary. We are not bound by them. We are constantly reached into the Condition of these conditions and so can love one another, play with one another in this dream circumstance without becoming bound, because we constantly recognize one another in Truth in this play. If we will intuitively recognize one another, we can be free of the conventional striving which is a reaction to the awful sense acquired while alive that separation or dissolution of our relationships is inevitable.
Our immortality is not conventional, earthly, elemental. It is a Divine matter, founded in this recognition. It is founded in sacrifice, not in any effort simply and exclusively to make this elemental body live forever. No such motivation would work. If we are fitted to this sacrifice absolutely, maybe the body’s life gets prolonged. All kinds of things may occur, but they are not our point of view. They are secondary to the essential fulfillment of the Law of Sacrifice.
So we do not only need to see one another, you and I. You also need to live your life on the basis of this relationship in which the true Condition is identified, in which you recognize these conditions and therefore rest in the true Condition. So you need to live an ordinary life. You need peace and quiet, a natural, human size environment, with ordinary intimacies, a few people to see regularly. You need a place, an occasion, in which to meditate in private. All these things are your obligations if you are to fulfill the true Condition of our meeting. Since all of those things are required, we will certainly see one another, but we will also all live our privacy as well, because if we are not given up in private, our meeting has no opportunity to grow, to represent a new adaptation. You will simply be struggling and striving here anxiously, never really being released from the implications of this world.
Our destiny is not something that we can prefigure. Our obligation, though, is clear. The law in this moment is clear, the true form of our living is clear, and so we must fulfill it. Having fulfilled it perfectly, you will then see transformations of this ordinary living here that are more and more positive, but you will also see the real spiritual transformation, which fundamentally has no drama whatsoever connected with it. It is simply absolute release from the necessity of this appearance here and all the craving that we develop on the basis of it. In this release, the being rests in its true Condition, in which all kinds of other conditions appear, such as this world here. The gross form continues to appear. Subtle forms may appear.
And then perhaps such changes may cease to appear, and you rest in the Condition itself, the God-World, the Realm that is itself the Beloved. There is no speech to describe it. There is no vision of it. You must fulfill the Law, and that is all. Whatever the perfect Destiny is beyond the cessation of changes in these unnecessary realms, it is nothing of which any born being has knowledge. Such is not permitted. There is no vision, no doctrine, apart from the Law itself. You make this sacrifice, and then only the Truth or the Divine is your Destiny, whatever that altogether is. So all the anxiety built up on the basis of experience here must come to an end, and in our relations we must become natural, ordinarily loving. You cannot oblige any creature you love to live forever, because he or she simply cannot do it, and neither can you, as an act of will. Whenever we come together and say we love one another, we cannot promise to stay with one another. We can promise our life to one another and in that sense stay with one another, but we do not have in our will the capacity to stay with one another forever, because the body dies. This condition disappears. So you must die while living. You must be able to let go of this unnecessary realm and dwell in the God Condition while alive. In that case you will be free of anxiety, you will have humor in relation to things here. You will be capable of loving in the natural fashion because you are not obliging it all to stay here forever. You are recognizing it intuitively, and therefore the Condition of all these conditions is the Beloved you find in every lover, in every arising phenomenon, in every moment, and in. the Spiritual Master most directly.
Truth is not some hopeful word such as “You will be immortal on this earth, and all things will cease to die and we will live forever.” There is no such message. That is not the Truth. Even if that were factually true, it is not t,he Truth. The Truth is in this recognition, this identification of the Beloved, this sacrifice. Secondarily, our lives may be prolonged, but we are still obliged to the same sacrifice and the same humor. Only on that basis are we to realize all the secondary effects of the fulfillment of the Law, which may or may not be prolonged living.
So it is true that this anxiety about your relations is something you discover in yourself. It is not healed by any ordinary arrangement. It is itself that condition in our awareness by which we are moved to fulfill the Law, to make this sacrifice. It is not otherwise removed, we are not otherwise relieved of it. In your right response to me, in this actual practice, it passes. Anything, anyone, that you love and enjoy in this realm is only, if you will recognize it, the Beloved, the very Real itself. This is what you discover in all your loving, all your enjoyments, if you are a true man, a true woman. If you do not live by such sacrificial recognition, all your experiencing and enjoyments lead to attachment only. They reinforce ritual behavior, craving for contact, craving for experience, craving for repetitions in which we are constantly anxious, ill-at-ease, suffering reactive emotions, endlessly thinking, mulling things over mentally as if we were trying to solve some hidden problem, knotted up in the body, always active to find some pleasurable condition that will last, that will fulfill us. If you intuitively recognize this matter arising here, you are not bound up by reaction to that whole automatic ceremony. You are relieved of it. And that recognition is the only release.
Paradoxically, even though there is all of this delight and suffering, there is not one single thing, there is not a single event, not a single change, not a single modification, no birth, no death. Nothing has happened. Nothing has ever happened. Nothing ever will happen. There is only a single and absolute Condition, unspeakable in its Nature, which we may not see, hear, experience over against ourselves, but which is our very Condition prior to all changes, high or low. Having fallen into That, then all the changes, high or low, have a disposition in us from which to be properly viewed, should they arise. And, as it happens, this one you seem to be when active in the waking world continues to arise for the time being paradoxically, because it does not amount to anything.
Nothing is gained by a moment’s living, absolutely nothing. Nothing changes on the basis of it. Nothing is gained by a single meeting, by a single moment’s satisfaction, by a single contact. This living isn’t anything. It is only an illusion, a modification of the essential Condition. If you come to rest in that Condition, then in every moment you recognize this and are happy, already happy. You can play in the ordinary ways, but you never become wretched. You are not degraded through your own craving, because you recognize what you love, and therefore your relations with loved ones, with this whole world, are natural, happy.
Otherwise, your craving for the immortality of the loved one will become so profound that you will be forced to kill her or him. You will murder the loved one in your craving for the loved one’s immortality. Your anxiety over the loss, the separation, will become so great that you will eventually begin to degrade the relationship itself, to separate yourself automatically. Then everything you do begins to separate you from the loved one, even though you are here to be loving, because you are so anxious, so terrified, so upset. But if you will recognize one another in Truth, if you will recognize this world in Truth, if you will recognize me in Truth, then you are engaged in that process that relieves you of this illusion, and you can come to rest. You can be happy. It is not necessary to go on with great plans to conquer this world in one fashion or another. Nothing is gained by it. You never conquer the loved one. You are enamored. You are in love. No conquering goes on at all. You only start conquering when you become afraid, when you fear this separation. Then you get anxious and start craving all kinds of satisfaction.
So I recommend that you meditate. However, you cannot meditate. You cannot willfully go about some program of meditation and have it be true, because that is a way of conquering rather than of being in love. You must realize this real meditation through the consideration we enjoy face to face. And if you will begin to rest in the current of the being in my Company, then you will begin to feel my influence. I will be of use to you in that case, but not until then. If your approach to me remains conventional, you are not at ease, you are not rested in this current, and you cannot feel it. Then there is no initiatory force in our meeting. You will really only discover the force of my influence when you begin to come to rest, in meditation, in our meetings, and in life. When you are rested in this current, through true intuitive identification of me, of the Condition of the current of your own being, then you can feel my work.
Because I am simply present in this Condition, I do not have any plans. I have nothing to do with all of this arising. I am simply standing here, and if you recognize me truly, then this current of the being is intensified, its revelation begins, and you will fall out of the point of view of this dream, even though you continue in your ordinary relations within it. You may also, in the course of this meditation, this living, have the opportunity to be involved in all kinds of other dreams, to live and perceive in other forms, other dimensions entirely. It is not that you must strive for that. That is another kind of craving, another kind of effort toward victory based on a failure of recognition, a failure to presume this Ignorance which is native to our birth. All the conventional yogic efforts are kinds of craving. People will sit for hours a day manipulating themselves with various techniques, hoping to have this and that kind of remarkable experience as a result. It is just an extension of worldliness, of the same thing that is your suffering in this gross appearance. You must simply be relieved of all of that through the presumption of Ignorance and the intuition of the Condition of these conditions arising.
That intuitive recognition or identification is simply rest in the current of the being. It is felt in this body sense at first, and as we come to rest in it, it is enjoyed in all kinds of ways, none of which is in itself fulfilling as mere experience. These enjoyments are simply the secondary reflections of our fulfillment of the Law, our present resting in that Condition which does not have any content, which is unspeakable. Call it God, Brahman, the Self. It is the only Happiness, and it is the foundation of all happiness in the midst of conditions here or anywhere else.
So it is not that we must sit down and struggle to hear the inner sounds and go somewhere with them. It is quite natural that at some point you become absorbed in such sounds and other phenomena as an extension of this current, but it is rest in the prior Condition itself that is fulfillment of the Law, that is Happiness. It relieves you of the point of view of this world. It is not simply experiences of other worlds that relieve you of the point of view of this world, though they may arise and bring ordinary release. It is rest in the Condition of the very current of this arising, the Condition of these conditions, which is Happiness. It is perfect Sacrifice, and, paradoxically, is perfect fullness. It is a way of being mad without being crazy.
Nothing could be more mad than to be happy in this place, because there is really no justification for it. It is not reasonable to be happy. If you thoroughly examine this world, there is reason to feel very unhappy. Even with a little pleasurableness thrown in, it is not enough to overcome that conviction of darkness that you get when you really see what is happening here. So it is not any philosophy we can base on our experience here that makes us happy. It is complete release from the implications, the force, of this dreaming, this appearance for which we cannot account. And you see, it is already miraculous. Nothing fantastic has to happen. We already cannot account for a single thing in this room here. The mere existence of anything is beyond comprehension. It is sufficient to boggle us. You do not know what a single thing is. You cannot build any great programs for victory on the basis of such Ignorance. On the basis of that Ignorance, we are naturally disposed to all of this arising and may be led into the intuitive identification of the Nature and Condition of all this arising. And that is my occupation, to bring you to that recognition through Ignorance, in which you may come to rest in the current of the being and more and more profoundly fulfill the Law. But you see that this requires a new orientation, a turnabout from the conventional strife in which you pursue fulfillment here by reaction. The more you do that, the more confounded you become.
In the old cultures, they frowned upon anyone who knew too much or owned too much, because these were the signs of somebody who was really struggling and was therefore very worldly and dangerous. Of course they made this a blanket, black and white world view, but there is some wisdom in the feeling. We must be relieved of knowing and owning, of all our craving. We must become perfectly Ignorant. We must become a Sacrifice, not an Owner, not a Knower. The usual knowing and owning is ordinary enough, and we can take pleasure in ordinary things in one another’s company, but only if we are free, only if we all make this sacrifice constantly and are clarified in the being. So you must have the leisure, the ordinariness, in which to consider in this moment of arising that you do not know what a single thing is, that you do not know what the thing is itself, that you do not know what any of it is. If you will enter into your relations with me on that basis, this Ignorance, this falling into the current of the being through identification of its Condition, will become natural to you by Grace, freely, because it is not a conventional gift. It is the Gift of the being itself. It is prior to all strife, all circumstance. It is simply that you must be disposed to enjoy it. Become so disposed in my Company, and it absolutely will be given to you. That is also the Law. It is not a matter of striving and acquiring it, but of giving up that whole effort as you naturally do in Ignorance, in which you simply rest in this moment and recognize it in the form of your own Condition, the Condition of the current of the body-being itself. It is felt more and more profoundly as a current. It goes through changes. And it obliges you to go through changes outwardly in your relations and also bodily, because the body is transformed in its adaptation. The. current is felt passing from toe to crown rather than crown to toe. It is not that it goes from the toe and leaves the body toward the crown. It is just felt as if there were a wire from toe to crown in which the current or the flow is moving in that direction rather than the opposite. Then the current between the crown and the Heart may at last be Realized also.
We still stand in the world even as we rest in this current. But then you may notice in your private meditation that you also are released even of this experience here from time to time. As the currents of the gross being begin to harmonize, become naturally reoriented, the body comes to rest, the breathing becomes slow, simple, the heart rate goes down. We hear the breathing and feel it, but then we become aware that we cannot hear it any longer, cannot feel it any longer. The current itself becomes audible to us, and we may simply forget the gross body and pass into the subtler dreams, all the while being in the disposition of this Ignorance, in which we truly identify what arises rather than automatically becoming attached to it, rather than getting into patterns of craving on the basis of gross or subtle experience.
So all of that also passes. We come to the point where we are more and more profoundly identified with that Condition itself, which precedes all arising, high or low, and which does not have any reference really, which cannot be accounted for in conditions. It is prior to them. It is the Condition of conditions. It is a paradox, because it is true of you even while alive, while in the gross plane, in the subtle planes, in any and all of these unnecessary realms. This Condition, which is unspeakable, remains true, it remains your very Condition. Therefore, unnecessary worlds fall away, and perhaps then there is a Realm corresponding to that Condition in which you come to rest, to which you become fitted in your Enjoyment or Sacrifice, in which all relations are eternal and absolutely pleasurable, unobstructed, unthreatened. Maybe. But first we must be free of all this. Wherever you ultimately wake up, where all dreams are being dreamed, you will discover in that moment that you have been lying there asleep all this time. It will be as ordinary as waking up in the morning and going about a day’s business.
But that is not a Realm to be craved, because it is not of a conventional and unnecessary nature. We must fulfill the Law, this Sacrifice, this Truth. The Condition of conditions is true in this realm or any realm, and it is that to which we must be committed while alive. Any glorious eternity that appears on the basis of it is a gift. But it is clear to me that if all of this now present can appear, as unnecessary and terrifying as it is, then the Perfect Domain is also existing, and it is somehow the same as no thing, no disturbance, no craving, no separation, no birth, no event, no moment, no future, no time, no place, no suffering. It is also exactly the same as love, as fullness, as delight, as very Light, as Happiness.