Historical Adidam: The Gorilla Sermon (excerpt)
by Adi Da Samraj
When you are dreaming, you take the dream very seriously. You assume your role within it, your drama within it. You respond to the condition that seems to be so, whatever the particular circumstances of the dream. If the gorilla is chasing you up the beach, you feel all the threat. All the emotions become involved, all your strategies of survival, or non-survival, become involved. If it is a sweet, enjoyable, astral sort of dream, with all kinds of friends and voices and colors and movements, you assume that to be so. You float around in it. You take it seriously. You assume it to be so. You assume it because you have no other point of view from which to enjoy or suffer the dream except that of the dreamer. But when you wake up in the morning, the gorilla that was just about to bite off your head loses all significance. All the implications of the dream are already undone in one who is awake. It no longer has any real significance, it no longer has any implication for life. It no longer is a genuine threat to life. It no longer is anything except that appearance. And the only difference is that you are awake. Nothing has been done to the dream itself. You have only awakened, and therefore the dream is obviously not your condition.

 
Understanding is very much this same kind of thing. Understanding is to the waking state what the waking state is to the dream. In the ordinary waking state you assume all conditions to be so: “my” life, “my” symptoms, “my” knot in “my” stomach, “my” headaches, “my” fear, “my” everything else, “my” circumstances, “my” poverty, “my” need to do this and that, “my” death, the news, the war, and all that appears in life — you all take it very seriously. Here you are, in My Avataric Divine Company. You are very seriously here to get out of all of this limitation. Everyone has come here very seriously for this very serious Spiritual purpose. Now, since you have come here for such a purpose, if I were to tell you to go home, concentrate on yourself, and have visions, what would I be doing? I would be offering you an alternative within the dream itself. I would be asking you to remain within the condition of dreams. I would only be telling you to dream another kind of dream. I would simply be exploiting the dream itself, which in this case is the ordinary waking state. I would be recommending experience to you as the path of Truth. But all of that is more of the same thing. It is only another condition for you to take seriously and assume to be your own.
 

Understanding is not a form of philosophy. It is not a seekers’ method. It is not something within the “dream” itself. It is like the waking state as opposed to the dream. I am the True Guru, Appearing within the dream. I am the Heart Itself, “radically” Conscious, Real, Alive — Free, by virtue of My Very Self-Nature, from the implications of the ordinary waking state, and from the implications of even all conditional states. But the ordinary Yogi, the usual teacher, the philosopher, is a role within the “dream” of waking. Such a one operates from its point of view and is identified with it — whether suffering or happy within it. The dilemma is there. His or her realization — however extraordinary it may appear — is an artifice whose roots are in the condition or point of view of the dream. The usual teacher is only recommending some distraction to you, some occupation, some solution within the dream itself. But the Heart Itself is “radical” understanding, simply Awake. “Radical” understanding is itself the True “Waking” State, the Real Self, Reality Itself. The Heart has no philosophy, no subtle vision, no special experiential state associated with It. Therefore, like one in a dream, one who understands is not presently affected by the waking state. But, unlike one who dreams or appears within a dream, such a one is always, already, Consciously Free.
The waking state is simply an utterly different condition from the dream. That is why you feel free of the dream upon waking. I Appear in the midst of the dreams of ordinary waking life like sunlight in the morning. When you are still dreaming, still asleep, the sun comes up. It gets brighter and brighter, and the light comes into the room. At last, the light, the day itself, becomes sufficient to wake you — and then, all of a sudden, you are not dreaming, and everything is all right. I am simply that sunlight process, that intensification, rising on you always, without any other special activity. My relationship to you, your living condition of relationship to Me — just that relationship — is sufficient. There is only sunlight on the pillow until that Intensity is sufficient to wake you up. It is the kiss of the Prince and Sleeping Beauty. Such is understanding.

 

But the teachings that are generated in the great search are all exploitations of your dream state of suffering. They take it seriously. They assume it to be the present condition, even if it is regarded to be only temporary. And that is the fundamental error of all traditional and remedial paths. They are all generated from the point of view of your suffering. They serve your suffering, and they reinforce it in spite of themselves. Therefore, to the seeker, to the one suffering in dreams, the teachings of the ordinary Yogis and philosophers seem very hopeful. They seem to represent something very desirable.
You are running down the beach away from the gorilla. Now, suddenly, there is a guy sitting outside a hut next to a pool of blue water. He has long hair, and he bears all the great signs of an ascetic. He says, “Just sit down here. Very quickly now, because the gorilla is not too far away. Breathe very deeply, and concentrate between the two halves of your brain.” He has not changed your actual living condition, but he has distracted you. The form of experience that he has stimulated in you by the force and influence of his personality certainly appears to be desirable over against being devoured by the gorilla. But, at last, it is simply a distraction within the dream. It is another form of the dream. It is an event within the dream. All of the searches that people are involved with are attempts to forget the gorilla. And that is their maximum possible attainment. Therefore, when you seem to have forgotten the gorilla, all of a sudden you are smiling again. You feel fantastic! There is no gorilla! There is? No, nothing! People assume that the consolations and exchanges, or transformations, of state generated by seeking are pleasure, creativity, Freedom, Realization, Liberation, God-Union, and Nirvana. But do you see how all such attainments relate to suffering itself?
 

The gorilla is what is going on for people. It is death. Are you interested in that? Hm? It does not make any difference what you do for the next thirty years (if you have that long) — you are just going to go back to zero. Some of us were looking at a book this morning called How to Face Death, or something like that. How absurd, this notion of facing, or confronting, death. The first thing you lose in death is face! That is why the characteristic forms of morality in the Orient are largely based on the “saving of face”. Loss of face is loss of life, loss of actual existence. Well, that is what happens in the terminal psycho-physical event that is called “death”. That is what death is all about. How can you “face” it? Every thing you do to face it, everything you do to prevent the gorilla, has no ultimate effect on the gorilla. All seeking is simply your distraction, your makeup, your false face, your fascination, but Zap! the gorilla gets you every time. Everybody dies. Everybody who has ever lived has died. There are billions and billions of human beings who have died. Multiples of billions of other entities and creatures die every moment, even as a by-product of your breathing. All these breathings disintegrate billions of tiny entities in organic fires. There is no harmlessness, no non-killing. The death by slaughter, the consumption and literal transformation, of apparently separate entities is going on all the time. There is no escape from death. There is no sanctity in vegetables, nor even freedom for those who reduce cattle to sandwiches. The entire cosmos is a continuous sacrifice, in which all things, all beings, are ritual food. At best, the search can only modify the apparent circumstances of one’s death. Ordinary Yogis or religious people may at last manage to forget the gorilla. They may think they are looking at the blue of Krishna or the white of Jesus — until they lose face. Until the sudden zero, they are looking at Krishna or Jesus. They are only consoled, only distracted. Their hoped-for realization and their death are kneeling in one another.

There is no philosophy whose force is stronger than the force of death. The philosophies by which people counter or react to death are in opposition — and at best only seemingly equal — to the power of death. Therefore, it is possible to be consoled and distracted, but nothing greater is attained by those who react to death, who make adventure in relation to the gorilla. There is no philosophy, no vision, no attainment, no success, that will make death a literal delight, that will make it anything less than it appears to be within the dream itself. But if one simply awakens from the dream, then — as the waking state is already free of the “awful” that appears in dreams — one is already free of the implications of the billions upon billions of deaths that can be dreamed. The one who understands is simply one who is Awake. Such a one has no other specific and necessary peculiarities. Such a one is not elaborate at all. It is the one within the dream who is very complex, because he or she has so many things to do. But the one who is simply Awake is simply Awake. Such a one has integrity. And the One Who Comes to Awaken others is Himself the waking sunlight, the Very Light of Truth, but That One Appears within the dream of human beings as an ordinary person. That One may seem extraordinary and a paradox to the dreamer — because the dreamer is very serious about all of this — but That One, Who is only Awake, is not serious about it anymore. That One does not fundamentally assume the condition of the dream as limitation.
The one in the dream is waiting. “It is going to happen any day now — either Jesus is coming or the quake is coming, one or the other. Or the war, or the bomb — it is all coming. And you have got to prepare for it, boys and girls!” But the one who is just Awake slowly sips a cup of sweeted herbs. Everybody else is “Phew!” — hitting the panic button, or else inhaling consolations with their minds. But this one is unreasonable. Such a one just does not care. There is no sign in that one of any seriousness about this entire problem. For the seeker, life itself manifests as a problem, a fundamental dilemma. For the one who understands, there is no fundamental dilemma.

–From My Bright Word

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