a young man, I was an intense and somewhat desperate spiritual seeker. I was driven
to find the “answer” to my spiritual “quest”. I remember when I was 17 thinking
with great certainty: I should be enlightened by the time I turn twenty-five.
What a measure of my naivety! I thought of enlightenment as a state of clear and
impeccable mental understanding or knowledge. From what I had read to this point,
I assumed the enlightened state was brought about by intense thinking and analysis,
and, through this means, finding the secret knowledge that would enlighten one.
It was just a matter of finding the right sources of knowledge, until the hidden
truth would appear or be found.
The local library (in Tasmania, Australia)
had a choice range of spiritual literature. In my quest for secret knowledge,
I would look for new spiritual titles or re-read old ones. Some of the influences
I was exposed to were George Gurdjieff, Ramakrishna, Ramana Maharshi, Krisha (via
Hare Krisha literature), Yogananda, various Christian saints and mystics, Theosophical
Society literature (notably that of Annie Besant and Madame Blavatsky), Guru Maharji,
Krishnamurti, Meher Baba, Paul Brunton, and many others.
In 1973 (or 1974 . . . I'm not sure of the exact year),
I was reading a copy of Fate magazine  when
I saw a tiny advertisement for a book called The
Knee of Listening. There was a picture of a young man with his fist clenched,
and a short blurb underneath that read something like, “The Radical Teaching of
Franklin Jones”. ("Franklin Jones" was Adi Da's name at the time.)
back now, thirty-seven years later, I see that this apparently very minor event
was the first tangible Timeless Intrusion of Divine Reality (or our True Condition)
into my life:
Am your Very Consciousness. I Am the Real, the Light, the True Waking State, the
Heart — Breaking Through the force of dreaming. It is not that you are some poor
person who needs some other poor person to help you out. It may appear to be so
within the dream, but essentially it is your own Ultimate Self-Nature Appearing
within the dream to Awaken you. I Am your Awakening, and your always already Conscious
Avatar Adi Da Samraj, The
Gorilla Sermon, My "Bright"
I looked at the picture of Franklin Jones
and those words, “The Radical Teaching of Franklin Jones”, over and over. I don’t
think I even had enough money to buy the magazine; I was just browsing magazines
in a news agent store somewhere. The image and words and the import of them had
a sudden impact on me — like a shock — not quite at the level of the conscious
mind, more like: whoever that person is, I absolutely need to know more about
him and must find and read that book!
Even so, I continued my relentless
spiritual search. But I believe I dreamed about Franklin Jones, and thought of
him from time to time.
A few months after finding the Fate magazine
advertisement for it, I found an actual copy of The Knee of Listening.
I stumbled across it in a library.
I read it all in one day, and it blew
Nonetheless, my head was full of the traditional notions of seeking
and finding, and traditional spiritual methodology (which is still very much in
vogue in contemporary spirituality). And so, on my first read of The Knee of
Listening, it was the adventure that I loved: Franklin Jones'
marvelous meetings with powerful beings, and encounters with great forces. His
wonderful, shakti-filled life and experiences. His imagery of great Siddhas and
Yogis was riveting: the tough and earthy Rudi (Rudrananda); the powerful and enigmatic
Baba Muktananda; and the benign and incomprehensible Baba Nityananda.
yet . . . the conclusion of Franklin Jones' book — that the spiritual search and
all its imagery and methodology are completely futile, that all of that will never
achieve the goal of enlightenment that they seek, and that only the transcendence
of all seeking coincides with enlightenment — threw me into revolt and created
a deep disturbance in me (as I am sure it has in many others). It is certainly
not a "popular" message, when compared with the opposite communication
("spiritual experiences are IT"), exemplified by books like Yogananda’s
of a Yogi. So after reading it several times — just to make sure I had
gotten this (at the time) extremely unpalatable message correct — I resolved I
would never go near the book again!
Of course in spiritual life, nothing
is quite that simple (thankfully). Even as I continued my life of intense spiritual
seeking (as well as trying to raise a family and survive in the world), I had
a very powerful dream about Adi Da around that time, and continued to be haunted
by the message of The Knee of Listening.
My spiritual seeking evolved.
I engaged various techniques, meditative and prayerful effort, rather than mere
thinking and the pursuit of knowledge — though this did remain a huge part of
my overall (compulsive rather than planned) strategy. More influences available
at the time began to appear, including Baba Ram Dass, Sri Chinmoy, Bhagawan Rajneesh
(Osho) and some Hatha Yoga teachers.
But my next Graceful brush with Reality
Itself came from out of the blue, again with an awakening shock.
late 1970’s, I went into a bookstore and found an incredible stack of books at
the back of an otherwise conventional store in Melbourne, Australia. It was remarkable:
they seemed to have a tangibly energetic, almost glowing quality, as if I had
suddenly been thrust into a non-material realm. The book titles included Garbage
And The Goddess, No
Remedy, and The
Method of The Siddhas, by someone called "Bubba
Free John", along with some other books about Ramana Maharshi. The humorous
thing was — I had previously read (and rejected) The Knee of Listening,
and didn't realize that the author was the same person! And so I bought a copy
of Garbage And The Goddess and The Method of The Siddhas. I talked
with the sales assistant. He seemed to be as perplexed as I was by the mysterious
books, almost whispering to me about them. Later I would learn that a very close
devotee of Bubba Free John had come to town and distributed the books directly
to that store.
The Method of The Siddhas became a constant guide
for me. I acquired another copy of The Knee of Listening. Read together,
the two books seemed to make a lot more sense to me, perfectly complementing each
other in wisdom. Of course my seeking had not ended at all, and I was still tending
to just add Bubba Free John to my list of teaching sources — however, very much
at the top of the list (or, to use esoteric language: adding him as my "root
Guru"). I became something of an annoying and self-righteous zealot. I used
to punish anyone who came within range with my personal version of “Bubba Free
John”. I somehow got the idea that the goal was to become the “Guru” (possibly
like many others at the time). I seemed to not hear what was being said, or heard
It may be clear that, so far, books played a major role
in this “happening”. But, by themselves, books could only go so far. So around
1978 or 1979, I wrote the Mountain Of Attention Sanctuary
(in California) for instruction on how a person in a remote situation such as
mine (South Australia) could live Satsang with Bubbba Free
John as Spiritual Master. Someone wrote back, telling me there was a "seed
community" forming in Melbourne,
Australia, and I should make contact with someone there, and formalize my
relationship with Bubba via that community.
So I wrote to a man in the
Melbourne community, and he told me Bubba Free John had changed his name to Da
Free John, and that I should come to a Celebration day and watch a film on great
events that were unfolding.
jumped on a train, ecstatic to be involved in something so vast and unpredictable,
and headed for the Melbourne meeting place. I turned up looking “like a hippie
from the bush”, as one woman told me years later. There were about 18 to 20 people,
mostly around my own age, we watched an excerpt from a film about "The Day
of the Heart" (September 16, 1979), which evoked a profound and spontaneous
response in me that was totally unexpected. I started weeping at the sight of
Da Free John. His voice had such a depth of Profundity that it seemed to be speaking
from a place far beyond this plane of existence. I took back home a copy of a
book called Conversion, later released as Compulsory
Dancing, and remained in an ecstatic devotional state for days afterward.
* * *
It is now many years later. Further details
of my life story are not necessary. In telling this story, what I really want
to write about is expressed by the title itself: "The Timeless Intrusion".
The Main Event has already happened. The Divine Intruded early in my life in the
human form of Adi Da. I became His devotee in 1984. All the rest of the details
of my life and the particular characteristics of my seeking habits are totally
incidental. They could belong to anyone. You may find some parallel to your own
living or perhaps none at all . . . it doesn’t matter that much.
matter is what we all have in common: the capacity to be Graced by Reality Itself,
however that may be conceived or described. On looking back to that first contact
with Transcendental Reality (and here I am placing no local limitation on this
Initiation whatsoever, prior to Adi Da’s appearance in my life), if the Truth
had appeared in a form other than Adi Da, I would have accepted that form. It’s
a mysterious appearance, and there is a huge joy in contemplating that miracle.
(And if it can happen to me, it can happen to you.)
It is now equally clear
as I look back, that the appearance of Transcendental Reality in one's life —
even in the tangible human form of Adi Da — does not guarantee a short, straight
path to “salvation”. It is not always straightforward, or a nicely laid out sequence
of "auspicious" events. Indeed, my life took a very long and winding
road to even reach the point where I could appreciate what has been given. There
were many false turns, many apparent fallings from Grace, many "one step
forward, two steps backward" situations. That first Recognition of Transcendental
Reality can be viewed as a seed
event, that may take many lifetimes to fully flower into clear consciousness.
But even that way of putting it does not convey it exactly, because if
we move to the position of Consciousness Itself (which does become more evident
and tangible via practice of the Way of Adidam and a naturally developing intuition),
we adopt a timeless stance (or asana, or "philosophy",
if you like). It just does not matter how long it seems to take (in apparent time
and space). On some level, it has already occurred. Thus the fully Radical
view is known to be correct, more and more.
Blessing is Given to each one from the beginning. It is Given completely also.
And from then you are living a Blessed life. But you cannot measure it yourself
or prefigure how it is going to work out, or feel you have received My Blessing
and it is supposed to show itself in some particular way — an energy experience
or vision or change in life, or whatever. It will be whatever it is and you simply
do the practice and notice how this Blessing works out in your own case.
this Blessing, like My Work altogether, is not linear. It is the Knight's Move
[as in chess]. So it is a Blessing forever, and it can show itself in various
ways at any point in time. And so it is true that some may receive My Blessing
and experience it in some way, on some occasion, and then, even many years later,
find My Blessing being effective and realize that it has something very much to
do with that time you noticed previously.
In some real sense it is also
true that when you become My devotee, even if you were not in any sense before
— having become My devotee, you become My devotee in your past as well as in the
present. It covers all time.
You all must have seen films or read stories
in which time is played upon — time machines or whatever else, or somebody gets
the ability to change the past, and it changes for other people as well. Well,
it is literally so when you become My devotee. It may even be that, if you examine
your past (having become My devotee), you realize things about it that are different
than it was as you remembered it before. And you remember other aspects of it,
and they become important even in the present time in a way that they were not
Avatar Adi Da Samraj
Become My Devotee in Your Past As Well As in the Present"
I could describe my own egoic limitations, and my progress (or lack thereof) in
transcending these limitations, but in a real sense, the details are besides the
point. The apparent "failure" of Divine Grace to have already moved
the individual to ultimate and permanent Liberation (or even real growth and change)
is partly because life is not seen over a long enough period of time. If one looks
at it all from a “timeless” vantage point, not locked into the particular short
term “unit” of a single human lifetime, it all gets a lot clearer. The first Intrusion
of Grace in tangible form all those years ago was simply a Graceful Wake-Up Call.
My unconscious life was Intruded upon by Divine Reality in the human form of Adi
Da . . . and in a sense, it took me thirty-seven years to notice this!
Establish Myself As My devotee. My devotee does not do something
in order to attain Me, or to attain My State, or to imitate Me, or to manipulate
"self" in its structures in order to (somehow or other, by that method) achieve
My Likeness, or to achieve union with Me. Divine Self-Realization is a Grace.
Divine Self-Realization is Given directly, by Me, and As Me.
Adi Da Samraj, "Radical"
As Adi Da expresses it, in terms
that are consequential not just for me but for all beings:
Divine Avataric Self-”Emergence” here Is The Consequential (and “Factual”) Breakthrough
in cosmic history.
Avatar Adi Da Samraj, "The Boundless Confession",
me, the import of this Intrusion of the Timeless Divine into history is a Celebration,
absolute and endless. Through the means of the Incarnation of Avatar Adi Da, a
bridge to Real God, Divine Reality Itself, is now not merely potential but factual,
and the basis for true faith.
Faith changes the world view. I am just writing
about what I am actually feeling or seeing. Adi Da often wrote about what He called
“Conversion”; well, faith is of that nature. Faith is felt as a joyous fullness
that changes everything. You can clearly see how an adherent of any particular
religion would see various saints, deities and spirit forms. In Adidam there are
none. The psyche is empty, unless you want to pursue various forms that appear,
fleetingly, as incidental side effects of practice. The form of the Guru is utterly
sufficient. Nothing needs to be added or embellished.
On the back cover
of the earliest editions of The Knee Of Listening was a quote: “The End
of All Seeking”. These words were said to be a description of the ultimate import
of the book. I used to read this and wonder what it meant. Thirty-seven later,
I can say that this quote accurately describes the genuine practice of Adidam.
That is exactly what I often find when I sit in the meditation room in front of
the Master’s Form in Satsang. The search ends right there, because real
satisfaction is located and known.
It is the great and ever marvelous Freedom
we all have always longed for. Find out for yourself!