Adi Da calls devotees to consider whether there is any evidence that a God exists Who one can hook up with through mere belief; and Who will then, like a Parent with Infinite Resources, start granting the believer a better life: reduced suffering, all kinds of earthly benefits, etc.
In this seminal discourse (at The Mountain Of Attention), from the early years of His Teaching Work, Adi Da speaks about the inevitable process of self-revelation and self-understanding that prepares the being for true Spiritual life.
This is a beautiful talk by Adi Da. But it IS very compressed, making quite a few points in a short space, and depending to a significant degree on a familiarity with Adi Da's spiritual teaching. Here are some notes that may help.
Throughout the talk, the technical term, "sadhana" (spiritual practice), is used.
Genuine spiritual practice is not about belief systems, mere rituals, or a little "peace of mind", but rather about actually locating the Divine, through the tangible Transmission of the Spiritual Master.
After a recent illness, a devotee mentions to Adi Da that he notices how the physical suffering of illness was distracting enough that he was not "able" to find Adi Da's Transmission when he is ill.
Adi Da acknowledges this, and responds with three more general points.
1. The illness didn't "make" the devotee lose the thread of practice; rather, he allowed himself to be distracted from God by the illness. When the devotee gets this, and sees how he himself is "doing" the turning away, he'll be able to "do better next time" by not turning away even when ill.
2. Until Divine Enlightenment — in other words, until there is no limit on one's spiritual practice — sadhana (spiritual practice) is always only reflecting back to devotees the remaining limits in their practice: where they are still turning away from the Divine, where they still need to become responsible for not turning away.
In the beginning, the "turning away" is very "crude": even mere physical suffering is enough to distract one from God. (If we find ourselves saying, "what do you mean, MERE physical suffering?" that definitely identifies us as spiritual beginners! :-) ) But as one grows in practice, and ceases to turn away in such a crude manner (as one becomes a "saint", "yogi", "sage", etc.), one discovers that one is still turning from the Divine at an even subtler level of the being (in the mind, the psyche, etc.)
It is only when that "turning away" has been inspected, understood, and transcended in every dimension of the being that Divine Realization occurs.
In this sense, for the genuine spiritual practitioner, physical suffering — along with every other circumstance that reveals to us our turning away from the Divine — is truly a Grace, enabling us to grow in our practice.
3. Where we are turning away is a reflection of what we are identifying with: the body, the mind, the soul, etc. (For example, if physical illness is enough to distract us from God, then the physical body is what we currently are identified with.) God-Realization only occurs when all "identities" less than God are understood and transcended.
In this sense, "there are no winners in God" — the Way is not about seeking, accomplishment, or winning, but rather about surrender to God, sacrifice of self, and ego-death. There's no "one" left to "win"! But the One Who Remains is perfectly, eternally happy.
Adi Da Samraj recites some of the core practices of the Transcendental Spiritual Way of Adidam from "The Teaching Manual of Perfect Summaries". This recitation took place at Adi Da Samrajashram on the Fijian island of Naitauba, as part of Adi Da's recitation of the complete Text of The Happenine Book, in a series of occasions starting on April 22, 2006 and ending on May 10, 2006.
Anything was allowed to happen in the performance, and no rehearsal was required. The performers were open, concentrated, and ultimately, surrendered to the Ruchira Avatar Adi Da Samraj, permitting His Divine Transmission to dance the dancers and play the musicians.
John Wubbenhorst on lead flute, Michael Sheppard on electronic keyboard, Steve Zerlin and Byron Duckwall on various stringed instruments, and Ken Anoff with hand-held drums launched into a piece that ran for 75 minutes. The dancers began seated facing each other on the 8 X 16 foot raised stage they'd built for the occasion. From low-key, seated movements they took perhaps 6 minutes to develop their movements into a standing dance which acknowledged the portrait of Adi Da Samraj off stage left and climaxed in a slow but spectacular partnering sequence in which Tom carried Susana on his shoulders and lowered her to the floor by bending forward from the hips with a straight spine, a risky show of strength. The intensity of that early climactic moment galvanized the attention of the audience and lifted this improvisation out of any association it might have had with the lazy or casual.Later in their improvisation, Tom and Susana managed passages of rhythmic intensity, flinging their arms to the musicians' tight, fast tempos. We always expect professionalism from the Everts, but we were surprised at how successfully they maintained our interest in the extended improvisation.
An audio talk from 1982 accompanied by images of Adi Da. This talk was later published in the book, The Dreaded Gom-Boo.
This talk considers that all religion seeks to cure us of an unreal disease, which Adi Da humorously calls the "Dreaded Gom-Boo". This disease is our constant presumption that we have somehow "fallen from Grace" and are in need of the salvatory "cure" of religious belief.
Adi Da uproots this religious conceit and illusion by Confessing (based on His Own Realization) that we are always already present and alive in and as Divine Being. The "good news" of Adi Da's Way of Adidam is that, in present Communion with the Divine (made available through Adi Da's Spiritual Transmission), we need not seek to be cured, but must only feel, observe, understand, and renounce the very activity of seeking itself, and thus be restored to our native Happiness and Freedom.
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