When Wisdom Fails the Word Prevails
A Beezone Inquiry
“ We have neither a democracy nor a worldly hierarchy. Ours is a cooperative gathering. Each one is responsible in a unique sense, and everyone is aligned to me. Everyone is submitted to Wisdom.” – Adi Da Samraj
Adi Da Samraj, 1984
hat is the best form of governance? What rules should guide communities, families, and others living together to follow, and who should make up these rules?
In trying to figure out the answers to these questions, I will first rule out a form of leadership or governance where absolute authority rules. Why? Because it presupposes two things. One is that there is an all-knowing person with the ability to guide and direct others. The other is the populace or council must blindly follow the all-knowing one. In other words, there is the leader, and there are the followers. Although straightforward and ancient in the history of human development, this form of governance is today no longer tenable. It just doesn’t fly in the face of post-17th-century understanding.
The question of governance is central to any human endeavor, big or small. Who’s the boss? Who’s running the show?
In the ‘law of the jungle,’ the strongest is said to the one in charge. This kind of ‘governance’ leads to thugs, gangsters, and those with the most power to rule over people. And how do they rule? The rule is creating fear in the hearts and minds of their ‘subjects’. In the authoritarian regime, fear is the controlling ingredient that allow others in need of security and safety to turn a blind eye. In authoritarian leadership, the law requires fear and chaos to exist. Without confusion, there is no requirement for law.
There are wiser forms of governance than an authoritarian rule that can distribute resources and create order without using fear as the method of power. The law is founded on Wisdom and cooperation. And here’s the catch 22. To have Wisdom, there has to be a ‘source.’ The Source is the guidance.
Wisdom is a paradox because it is not objective nor codified it is alive. Wisdom cannot be found; it cannot be followed or written down. It can only be understood collectively, and it is only apparent. It is always the opposite of what you propose in your logic and limited view. Wisdom sometimes looks like a negative and sometimes a positive. Sometimes is up and sometimes down. At times it’s backward and inside out and sometimes straight forward. Nevertheless, wisdom is always clear and undeniable, clear as a bell. It is senior to any form of knowledge, insight, or vision because it is a matter of the heart.
Without the heart, the mind rules, and therein lies the paradox. Without the heart informing the reason, the mind wanders in choices of good against bad and the heads and tails of decisions. Until Wisdom is ‘found’ and the heart rules, families, communities, and larger political organizations are left with old choices. Old choices of yesterday, where yesterday’s identities and forms of government are the only options. Without the heart principle alive, power is the principle. Only by having an Enlightened gathering can real Wisdom be allowed to ‘govern’ and the Source, the heart is the Guiding Principle.
Where Wisdom Rules
The following is an adapted talk given by Adi Da Samraj to his devotees on March 8, 1984
Adi Da Samraj: You are wondering whether the community should adopt a democratic form, in which everyone has a vote, or perhaps a representative form-which is more typical of democracy – in which not everyone can vote on every decision, but everyone can vote on who will represent them. The representative approach is perhaps the most obvious one to take since you are all living in America, but I am a Fijian. [Laughter.] I am a Fijian chief, and Fijians think in different terms about this! [Laughter.] Where I live, we tend to think hierarchically.
In Fiji, people do not vote. They can express displeasure about one thing or another – even about somebody being a chief. Instead of voting, they simply come to the chief and make requests. The chief is available twenty-four hours a day to be responsive to his people. He is there not only to be responsive to each individual but to be responsive to the entire community he is serving. This approach of managing through a hierarchy that makes decisions is also typical in other parts of the world.
It does not make any difference which of these two reproaches you take. I do not think we need to worship the democratic process as opposed to some other one. What is important is that Wisdom intervenes among human beings and becomes the means for making decisions. Democracy works correctly only if the people are wise and if they know what decisions should be made. If they do not know what decision is to be made, then democracy is the basis for a kind of chaos. I presume something like that is going on in this country, although I have not read a newspaper in a long time. The people are not wise, and yet they presume to be leading themselves to some degree or other. In other places, the people are led, but the leaders are not wise. Thus, there is no system that is best. Wisdom is what is best. Wisdom must affect the human process, and it can affect the human process through various systems of communication or political organization.
You do not consult one another about the spiritual process. You consult Me. If you consult one another, you do so as practitioners who have consulted me. We are not a democratic group in the sense that we all think about spiritual matters and then vote on what approach to take. [Laughter.] Over the years I have tried to give you wise advice about everything. You have an archive here filled with conversations, transcripts, and notes. Each of you is a kind of archive. I have advised you about everything, and if something comes up that I have not advised you about, generally you ask me about it.
Therefore, the means whereby Wisdom is Transmitted in this gathering is the Spiritual Master. The Spiritual Master can serve you in this sense by establishing a system of communication, a system of association here among you. Agency, in other words, is created. But Agency must be responsive to the Wisdom that you have received, that has been Transmitted to you. If a group of people here were mature enough in their practice, full enough of all my advice, and wise enough by virtue of experience, by virtue of submission to this spiritual discipline, then I would say to put them in charge and forget about voting on anything. However, you are not yet at that stage, so you need a somewhat more complex system.
Thus, you already have a kind of hierarchical system that you have agreed upon because you acknowledge my Wisdom-Influence in your lives. Added to that are various forms of Agency. Each of you is such an Agency. Each of you performs a different function for the institution or the community organization in cooperation with others, and thus you are my Agents. I have communicated what I have to say about your responsibilities.
If you are a department head, for example, then you work with others who function with you in a specific area of responsibility, and they cooperate with one another. You appeal to the entire community to respond to and make agreements about certain matters, so you do have a kind of hierarchical system. I have given you good Wisdom regarding all the kinds of practical matters that you must handle.
Nevertheless, your system of cooperation with one another presumes that there will be Agents of mine who have senior responsibility for dealing with various aspects of the institution and the community. Ultimately, everyone is involved in some sense in this cooperative activity, but you could not call it a democracy in the sense that you are on your own, left to think independently about what to do and then vote on it.
You are always submitted to Wisdom, always submitted to my Influence. Thus, we have done what essentially needs to be done. We have Transmitted the Wisdom-Influence into this human environment, and It is what masters you, what masters this situation, this community, and this institution. I Transmit through all my Agencies. Your constant appeal is to me, and you should make use of the Wisdom you have received. Appoint people who are most responsive to that Influence to responsible positions so that you can advise and appeal to the community on a right basis. Therefore, we have neither a democracy nor a worldly hierarchy. Ours is a cooperative gathering. Each one is responsible in a unique sense, and everyone is aligned to me. Everyone is submitted to Wisdom.