Cultic Concentration Doesn’t Produce Self-Knowledge

Speaking to devotee about a traditional Indian Ashram they are visiting together in 1973.

AVATAR ADI DA SAMRAJ: There are just as many hustlers and topless dancers here, except they all wear saffron robes and false faces. As soon as they stop chanting and going through their cultic routine, they are again topless dancers and hustlers, because the routine doesn’t really change anything. It just distracts them and gives them another game to play temporarily.
True sincerity is not that social quality we regard as sincerity. It is a quality that is naturally alive in a person who understands himself. All these cultic forms of concentration of attention and absorption don’t produce this kind of self-knowledge. They distract a person. 
Everything here is calculated to fascinate and distract you, to enforce your attention. There is one fundamental law involved in all forms of sadhana: the yogic law that you become the thing that you concentrate on. So all forms of sadhana here are ways of concentrating on what ultimately are supposed to be forms of the Divine–mantras, chants, the Guru’s form, what the Guru does outwardly, all the images and pictures–so that you become more and more absorbed and ecstatically distracted. 
But this path is untrue because it does not undermine the principle that is being absorbed and distracted. As soon as the source of distraction is taken away, the individual falls back into the state he was in to begin with.

True sadhana is the undermining of the principle that is exploited 
in these traditional places. 
That is why it doesn’t have the artifices that a place like this has. 
A place like this is very attractive, because it is so full of external routine, 
just as communism and fascism can be very attractive 
because they are so black and white, so orderly. 

Modern forms of crazy politics are the secular forms of traditional spirituality. But the truly human qualities are not rigidly ordered and precise. That kind of order is enforced, external.
Whenever the genuine principle of the spiritual process is brought to bear, it is a dangerous affair. From social, traditional points-of=view, you lose the artifices that are native to these external approaches, both the so-called “spiritual” and the secular. That doesn’t mean a genuine Ashram needs to be disorderly. Order is natural enough, but only order based on real functions, simply ordinary things, not on artifices that are attempts to get beyond yourself, to get ecstatic. Doing ordinary things is orderly enough. 
Chanting has its place as a moment, not as a perpetual attempt to become absorbed. It is an occasion, a pleasantry. It’s enjoyable from a genuine point-of-view, but once it becomes repetitive and constant, it is another method. It should only be used to the degree that it is natural, functional and appropriate.

All these grinning, gleaming faces 
don’t have any happiness underneath them. 
They have an intense desire, an attempt to be free of the unhappiness. 
That’s what those manifestations are. 
They are based on unhappiness, not real happiness. 
Real happiness is just free, radically free. 
It is not associated with a mood or a facial expression 
or any of that sort of nonsense. 
All that is unconscious ecstasy. 

People desire these traditional artifices because they are suffering, and it is obvious that bringing these things into an Ashram brings order and certain qualities that we associate with spiritual life. But if they are brought in at all, they must be brought in at appropriate times and in natural ways.
Creating an artificial environment essentially handles people’s disturbances, their neuroses, and their gross pride. They feel relatively at ease, and they walk around being soupy and spiritual all day, thinking they are doing sadhana. All they have done is remove the gross influences from their lives. But that’s the condition under which sadhana in fact begins. You must penetrate your core of ordinariness.
In true sadhana you are dealing simply and directly with your state, your atmosphere, your ordinariness. It is truly perceptive to see that in your actual state, your very presence, is disturbance, completely independent of qualities that condition, you are obviously disturbed. But your very presence is that disturbance. You can see that there is no genuine rest in you, except a mediocre experience of no disturbance which comes from without or within. 
When those gross disturbances are removed, you begin to see that your actual state, your very presence, is disturbance, completely independent of qualities that may appear to you. It is always this contraction. You begin to see that. 

You see it in your ordinary moments of relative ease and happiness, 
not just in your neurotic highs and lows, 
but in this neutral state in which there is no peculiar event. 
When you begin to see it then, understanding has begun. 

But people buy out at that point. Instead of truly becoming perceptive and carrying on the real activity of consciousness, they just enjoy that neutral time until the next disturbance arises or the next high arises. The highs and the lows are too baroque, they are not fundamental, they are extraordinary. This ordinariness is an omnipresent quality against which all other qualities play. The secret of understanding is in recognizing that.

Adi Da Samraj

©2010 The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam Pty Ltd.,
as trustee for The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam.
All rights reserved. Perpetual copyright claimed.

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