Robert Adams

Satsang Recording

Satsang vs Practice

Advaita Satsang with Robert Adams
Satsang vs Practice

Robert: Thursdays, we’re very informal. We have a chance to get into things perhaps, we don’t usually talk about on Sunday. We should continually remind ourselves of Truth, of who we are and what we are. Don’t let yourselves get caught up in your jobs or in your work, or in whatever you do, where you forget about yourself. Always confess the Truth to yourself. So when I make my confession, I speak in the first person, “I Am”. And as you are aware, when I say, “I Am,” I am not referring to Robert. I’m referring to “I Am,” omnipresence. Which includes all sentient beings. So the confession includes you, not me. For I don’t have to say anything myself. So let’s close our eyes and remind ourselves of this Truth. I am absolute reality. I am unfathomable wisdom. I am pure intelligence. I am satchit- ananda, parabrahman. I am of the unborn. I am perfect intelligence. Divine mind. Nirvana. Emptiness. I was never born and I shall never disappear. I am that I am. This is the Truth about me. This is my confession. This is my reality. (silence) Who am I? I am He. I am not the body. (phone rings) I am not the doer. I am not the mind. I am pure consciousness, parabrahman, omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience. This is my Truth. (short silence Robert continues) Om Shanti, shanti, shanti, peace, peace. You can open your eyes. Become aware of this truth all of time. Do not let an hour go by, when you are not aware of this truth about yourself. Someone called me on Tuesday and asked me this question, “Sunday you said that the best way to awaken is to be at Satsang all the time and then later you said the best way to awaken is to practice the teaching at home. Which is which? Sounds like a contradiction.” Who can tell me the difference? (Students guess) SD: I can guess that satsang is more or less an attitude. R: You’re on the right track. Anymore answers? SK: Satsang is where you can get a taste or understand what the state is and you go home and develop that doing your practice? R: In a way that’s true too. SD: What’s the original question? R: I said that Satsang is the best way to awaken, but then later I said, if you practice the things at home that we learn. That awakens you also. So which is real? Which is better? (laughs) (Students ponder and guess) SF: No difference? R: There is no difference? But remember we’re talking to students. So if a person is a real devotee, then Satsang is a thing for them. But if they’re a disciple, or if they’re a student who goes from teaching to teaching, then they should practice at home. That’s the main difference. Do you see that? For a real devotee, all you need is Satsang, nothing else. (SD: Continue learning at home?) No, whenever you’re there. That will do it for you. SG: I’ve never separated the two before. (R: It depends on your discerning.) SN: Robert once gave a Satsang on the difference between a devotee and a disciple. It’s worth hearing. I think I have it on tape. Robert is there a difference between a devotee and a disciple and between a bhakti and a Jnani? R: In reality as you know there’s no difference. But at a level from where somebody is coming from, or where they think they’re coming from, there’s a difference. So it depends on what level you’re talking about. Bhakti leads to Jnana. Everything leads to Jnana. When you love God with all your heart and with all your soul, you become God. So you become a Jnani. SD: Isn’t also a Jnana is acknowledging bhakti with devotion? (R: Yes.) So devotion is leading to ultimate reality? R: Yes, and when you’re devoted to God, really devoted, and you really surrender your life to God. Then you will merge with God. SN: Now if you go to satsang with a devotional attitude, I can see how that would make one a devotee. However if you’re more tending toward Jnani then would you still feel that devotion in satsang? See what I’m getting at? R: Yes. When you attend satsang, the vibration for a devotee, makes you equal with the Jnani. You become one with the Jnani. (SN: But if you’re more tending toward being a Jnani then is that devotion near?) The devotion is near. (SN: So even if you’re a Jnani you could feel a great love still.) Yes, you always feel great love. (SN: So what’s the difference?) At that stage there’s no difference. SD: But if you actually in sanscrit break the words down there’s a slight difference between devotion and knowledge, Bhakti means devotion and Jnana means knowledge, that’s all. SN: But really isn’t it having love but as well as understanding? R: It’s all one. For whom is there a difference? For the ajnani. The person that still thinks they are the body. Then there’s a difference. And that’s the person we’re talking about. So for instance we get some students who go from teaching to teaching. Read all kinds of books. Do all kinds of things. That’s more of a disciple type person. So that person has to practice and come to satsang. But the true devotee, like the person I always talk about who used to fan Ramana. Who used to pull the fan and fan Ramana for forty years. (laughs) That’s all he did. He was a devotee and when he dropped dead, Ramana said, “He’s not coming back.” (SD: So he would have reached enlightenment by devotion.) By pulling the fan. (SD: Which is devotion?) Yes. (SN: He didn’t have to do anything else?) That’s it. He was always at satsang. SF: I was going to ask you Robert a question. Of course it seems like aside from the Jnanic gesture or inquiry I would say self-inquiry, but yet devotion to the guru per se also takes you to the Self, doesn’t it? R: The devotion of the guru? (SF: To the guru.) Oh to the Guru, oh yes, of course, but it doesn’t mean you have to worship the guru. (SF: No.) It means if you’re devoted to the guru you’re devoted to God and to your Self. SD: That’s what he was telling us, the man who did the fanning on Maharshi, he was a devotee and that devotion led him to enlightenment. SF: Okay. So, would you consider in the process of self-inquiry somebody may just be a devotee more than a disciple or he could be a next step right? R: Well, what usually happens is that a devotee becomes a Jnani and the Jnani becomes a devotee. But they’re all are the same there’s no difference and the devotee is to the Self. They begin to see, if somebody like Ramana, as the whole universe. Everywhere they look they see Ramana. SD: Then are you saying that the devotee has reached enlightenment? (R: Possibly.) In the case of the man who fanned Ramana he didn’t know within this lifetime that he would not come back so at his death… R: Well even when he was alive because he knew nothing else. (laughs) All he knew was Ramana. He didn’t have a mind of his own anymore, his mind was gone. His mind became Ramanas mind. (SD: He would be enlightened in a sense that he did for forty years?) Yes, he never said anything. SN: You know how they say in the Bhagavad-Gita. The thought, the last thought you have before you leave the body, think on that and it’s not so much the last thought but progression, what you are, you become. So he became Ramana in his lifetime. R: Well not only that if you take it literally. If you say, “Well I don’t have to do anything, on my last thought I’ll think of God-realization and become realized” But the trick is you won’t be able to. SN: You won’t be able to? (R: No) And also isn’t there a principle when you leave the body then you become enlightened, like at that moment it’s like sudden or final enlightenment? I forget what the term is, I’ve been thinking about that. SD: That’s Jivan-mukti when you’re enlightened while living and there’s another kind and I forget the word too but another kind of mukti? SU: For whom does all this come? (R: That’s right.) Who wants to know. (laughter) SD: I’ve a question, and I know what your answer going to be, but when you had us close our eyes and more or less repeat with you or absorb with what you were saying about the “I AM.” There’s always the part of me, and I know this will be your answer to this, “Who thinks that” but, that feels too insignificant and humble to believe that stuff. (R: Just observe.) Observe that there is a part of me feeling too insignificant. R: Observe what’s going on, become aware of it.Just to be aware of it,get’s rid of it. SG: That’s just the difference between I Am and your little self. SN: But I would say, the truth is, is that you are that. First of all, yes you, yes you! But also to feel humble in such a way, well not humble but… (SD: Well it is humble and insignificant.) Insignificant, that’s kind of blasphemy again because I remember once I mentioned to Robert, “Well I’m just ignorant” and he said, “Well that’s blasphemy.” (SD: Well I maybe feeling that once I question your words but nonetheless that’s how I feel, that keeps me the same way.) Well what I’m trying to say, it’s kind of a reverse psychology because one is like the ego is saying, “Well I’m great” which is like not specific and the other one is saying, “Well poor me.” Which is the same thing because it’s still me. And it’s the same thing, Yes you!!” I would say, “Yes You!” (SD: Well I knew you would say, “Well who feels insignificant, right?”) R: Well, not only that but just to be aware of your feelings, makes those feelings disappear. Just to be aware of them. To watch them. To observe them. SD: I sometimes don’t feel worthy when you say, “I Am.” I started to ask should I resist that feeling but I just observe it. R: No, resist nothing. SG: You merge into that and there’s no ego to feel in that sense. SD: Yeah that’s true, does anybody else have a hard time dealing with their omnipresence. SN: Well I did, I did and then when Robert brought that to light I saw the mechanism. (SD: Two sides of it?) Yes, So my point to you is understand the mechanism. It’s the same force showing it’s face at a different thing, and know that you are, you are that, you are that, you are all of that. And when you think, feel like Robert says, the four principles. When you think it and feel it and you understand it, you become it, don’t resist. “Who me?” Don’t say that, that’s blasphemy. “Yes me! I am That!” And I did feel that way, I did feel that way and he, Robert pointed that out to me and I meditated on it and never put anyone down, never put yourself down. R: No matter how many mistakes you make. Just pick yourself up, brush yourself off and start all over again. Another question people ask me. Somebody in particular called me a couple of weeks ago and asked me the question, which is real interesting. They said, “I used to be a Jnani, (laughter) but what happened is, it didn’t do me any good.” (laughter) (SD: I used to be a wife but…) “…but it didn’t do any good physically” (laughter) (SN: So then I took up baseball.) (laughs) Exactly! (SD: What did you say?) R: Well I explained that if you were a Jnani you would always be a Jnani, there’s no turning back. You can’t intellectualize it and say you’re a Jnani, but the important point is this, actually of what significance is it, what good does it do you in the world? Well to begin with, it’s hard to explain, because when you realize you are not your body. This is literally what it means, you are not your body. Even though the appearance of the body is still there. Even though people look at a body and say well I see your body. Who sees the body? The ajnani sees the body. But the body is not there it doesn’t exist and in the appearance world the body seems to be going through all kinds of things. Just like the sky is blue. The sky is not blue and there’s no sky. But we say the sky is blue because it looks blue and it looks as if there’s a sky. In the same way, it appears as if there is a body, but this is like hypnosis. This is the mortal dream. We’re seeing with our senses and we’re seeing with our false imagination and we believe what we see is real. So the secret is to not identify nor judge with your eyes or with your senses, the things that you see. We just watch like we’re watching a movie. But we realize it has no substance. There’s no cause, it’s egoless, it’s all an emanation of my mind. That’s how we should talk to ourselves and get rid of the feelings that bother us when we observe something we don’t like. But again the question really is, while I am not enlightened what good does it do me? Will it make me rich? Will it give me a new house? New companions? Will it give me love, happiness, Joy? Of course I try to explain, those things are your very nature. So it can’t give you those things because you are those things. But as long as you believe you’re not, the path to this Jnana Marga, the path to Jnana will make you dream a better dream. Do you see what I’m saying? (SD: Yeah) As you unfold even though you still believe that you are the body, you’ll become happier, you’ll have more peace. Things will go better no matter how they look. SN: Things seem to go better with Robert. (laughter) R: And you’ll stop worrying. All your worries will just cease as you unfold. Until the time comes when you realize, nobody’s home. There never was a body, there never was a mind, but until then your so-called humanhood does improve if you’re following the path. In other words, the things that used to bother you before will cease. Before you used to look at the pictures of the world. You would become disillusioned, there’s wars, man’s inhumanity to man and you’d worry you’d be sad. All those feelings will go away. Not because you don’t care, because you realize what’s really going on. You will know the truth about the world, as you will know the truth about your body. The reason the world is the way it is, is because you believe you are the body. You’re giving birth to the picture. But then you say “Well Robert everybody else gives birth to the same picture,” true because collectively we’re all dreaming the mortal dream. SD: Are we all dreaming the same dream? I thought the reason…??? R: In reality that’s true also, but we’re all dreaming. SN: But we perceive people to be a certain way and then when we get to know them we find out that they’re not that way. We only thought they were that way. We never really know. We can’t judge a book by it’s cover. It happened to me continually then I said, “That’s what it means, don’t judge.” R: We leave things alone. We stop fighting, we stop trying to get even. We stop trying to change people, to make them believe what we believe. We’re just easy and gentle and watch. We have extreme compassion, mercy and we just observe. We float through the world. We’re in the world but not of the world, but again the answer to the question is, your life does improve. What you call your life now. This is why I say sometimes, it’s dangerous to expound these truths to people that are not ready because it seems to give them license to do as they please, and you can’t do it. It’s like what we were talking about in the car. We were talking about rules and some other people and you said, “Well that’s their Karma”. But that’s a mistake I didn’t want to say anything. Even though that’s their karma, we have to act like karma doesn’t exist. Until we realize that we don’t exist. SD: Do you mean disciples too, or everyone? R: Everybody. (SD: Everyone has to act like karma doesn’t exist?) Yes. Exactly because karma only exists because you believe that you are the body. SN: I mean I can see that in terms of myself and I said that was their karma as if I’m trying to work on myself in trying to understand that I have no karma whereas they aren’t doing that therefore they are bound by their karma. R: But it’s not your business what they’re doing. (SN: True.) In other words, if you were in trouble, say you went to court yesterday, right? And you were locked up in jail. (SN: I did go to court yesterday.) (laughs) And if I heard about it, I would come down and bail you out. SD: Even if you thought that was his karma? (R: I wouldn’t think about it.) SG: You would just do it. (R: I would just do it.) Out of compassion or whatever, just do it. Without analyzing.) (R: Exactly.) SD: Yeah but you could mean that it was your karma to bail him out and that could go…? R: That’s how the ajnani sees it. (SN: Yeah but you could take it either way.) Who takes it either way? (SN: The ajnani?) That’s right. That’s false imagination. The Jnani just does what’s present. (SN: Okay my question is, should we not only act and understand as if we have no karma but also as if other people have no karma?) Yes, exactly. See we have wisdom that goes along with that. We do not become a door mat for people to step on. But if someone is in trouble we help. If they’re in our path. SD: Well aren’t you saying that the Jnani lives in the now? R: Spontaneously. Everything is spontaneous. So somebody tells me, “Glen is in jail,” I don’t think about it, I don’t care what you did. I won’t try to analyze it. I’ll just go down and bail you out. (laughs) SN: So when I say that well so and so is going through this, but that’s their karma. R: That makes it sort of cold. You know what I mean? (SN: Yeah, I see that, yeah.) It makes it like, we’re better than that we know it’s their karma so they deserve it. (SN: Well yeah.) (laughs) SG: Because they believe they have to go through karma and that karma exists for them. R: Yes but it’s not our business. (SN: So when you say that that’s cold, then how should we view it?) By not viewing it at all, by just being. (SN: Just a total objectivity you mean?) Yes. SF: What about guilty feelings, that’s a problem because I’m…? R: Ask, “For whom are the guilty feelings?” Observe them. (SF: Okay, then you question yourself about action?) For whom is there action? (SF: Right action?) Right, right action. If you’re living spontaneously you will know what to do. You’ll take the right action. Anything you do will be the right action. If you’re doing it spontaneously. But if you have to think about it, that’s something else. (SF: Right, so you do your first impulse?) It depends who’s doing it. Because the first impulse may be to kill somebody. (laughs) (SF: The first impulse could be egoic or it could be spontaneous depending on what you are doing?) Well look at it this way. If you’re on a true Spiritual path and you’re devoted to the path you don’t have to worry about those things, it’ll work out. But what I said is also a contradiction. Because let’s say Rahul calls you and wakes you up at three in the morning and says, “Glen, drive me to the dentist.” (laughs) Then what you should do, if you’re really on the path you spontaneously say, “Rahul I’d love to take you but I just can’t because I’ve got to sleep, it’s very important to me. I’m sorry I’ll try to help you next time, good bye.” And you forget it, no guilt feelings, no feelings whatsoever. You’re just doing what’s right. But you don’t even think about it. So it happens in the right way if you do it spontaneously. But if he calls you and then, “Can you drive me to the dentist” and you say, you think about it and you get guilt feelings, and say “gee I wonder if I should, I wonder if I shouldn’t,” and you feel mad and angry. (SF: All these things are again analogies and then you keep going on rolling and rolling.) And it never stops. The whole thing keeps going on and on. SF: So Robert by doing spiritual practice things will take care of itself? R: Yes. That’s why I gave you that mantra on Sunday. If you work on that all the time. When you’re mind starts bothering you, when you have guilt feelings. When you feel something is wrong somewhere. Immediately catch yourself and do that mantra. SD:You told us that mantras do not lead to enlightenment. They can help to still the mind. R: It helps to still the mind. Everything I told you, everything I give you is to make the mind quiescent. Once there’s an empty mind you’re realized. Those things are important when you’re troubled. SD: Do you dwell in the “I-am” as a Jnani, but do you personally breathe the “I-am.” R: Well you just answered the question. Do I personally? Is there a person left? Could I still be there? If there were a person. (SD: What about Robert?) Robert doesn’t exist. SG: I cannot understand, Robert doesn’t exist. (R: Robert only exists for you because you exist.) So you really didn’t come out here. (laughter) SN: What about other mantras that other people get is there any difference? (R: They’re all produced of the same thing.) So there’s no difference. (R: There’s no difference.) SK: What about the mantras that actually seem to give you something? R: Who is the you who gets anything? (SK: I don’t know?) There’s no you that needs anything. (SK: At the same time on a relative level there seems to me to be some kind of feeling that pleasurable.) If it helps you use it. If it helps you to get rid of the feeling that you just described, use it. (SK: Or if it gives you a divine energy of some kind and it also leads one to the state of emptiness of mind.) Then use it as long as it helps. SD: Robert has mentioned before, anything that quietens the mind makes you one-pointed. R: But always remember who needs a mantra? The body, the mind. SN: So Robert, people can become self-realized on any path as long as it’s usually either through devotion or through Jnana which almost any path takes on one of these colors. right? (R: Yes.) So, self-realization can happen on any path through these methods? (R: Yes it can.) Because ultimately they all lead to self-inquiry. R: But unfortunately what happens in most paths, they get lost in the process. SD: The first lesson in the book of Ananda Mai-Ma she said “That to any path, whatever path that suits you, pursue with all your heart and you will reach enlightenment.” R: Yes, but she had to take that statement, “pursue it with all your heart.” “Pursue it with all your heart,” think about that. (SD: Well maybe I said it wrong not in the same reference.) You’re right! SG: And the changes that occur when a bhakti and bhakta becomes a Jnani and Jnani becomes a bhakta. Those are very nauseas images that I’ve never seen myself. It’s all ego self? R: Yes it is. (SG: If one is a bhakta becoming a Jnani do they ever go to a state of a bhakta again?) No not really but when you’re a Jnani you just have unconditional love, devotion. If I go into a holy temple some place, I start crying. SD: You would be seeing it as a bhakti… (R: Exactly.) …me too, what is it about that is there a holy energy or something. I find it in the churches and temples not even of my own… R: There is a divine energy that’s who you really are and your heart just opens up. SD: Is there something in that place? At least on the earth plane, something that’s collected like in the old churches, like you said in a holy place, you know what makes this holy? R: Something within you remembers, remembers your divinity. SD: There seems to be a collective consciousness in certain places, holy places. (R: Yes, but it’s you.) That’s right because you are collective consciousness? R: You remember, from past lives, from past experiences. You remember your divine nature. Who you really are and you start crying. Why are you crying? Because you believed that you are the body all these years and you don’t know it. (SD: It’s just seems to me what I felt was a feeling of release.) Yes. (SD: It’s not a sorrow, your tears just flow.) Exactly. SF: Robert, in several traditions I see, I think they talk about realization it comes along with the elimination of thoughts. Is that true or is the thinker which is creating that and thoughts are still happening in the Jnani? Of course I believe that thoughts are happening in the Jnani it’s just that he doesn’t identify with them or he doesn’t think? R: That’s true. They like bounce off. The thoughts come and disappear at the same time. They come and they’re gone, they come and they’re gone. SD: That’s right, you don’t dwell on them do you? (R: Exactly.) SF: But the Jnani or the realized one doesn’t see them as factual things. R: Indeed that’s right. No the thoughts are just return to nothing. They come and they melt. Like ice. They come and they melt and they go, and they come and they melt and they go. (SF: No clinging whatsoever?) No clinging, no attachment. (SF: So that’s what it means, elimination of thoughts?) Yes, you can say that. (SF: Because actually thoughts will always happen, within the nature of things while you are living in this world.) It’s not like the thoughts that the average person has. The thoughts that come to me. I realize that they’re not real. So I just look at them and they go away. (SF: So they acquire a new quality?) They’re a different quality of thought. But you’re right as long as there’s something present, some part of the body is still present, thoughts come, but they don’t come to me. They just pass through. Like empty mind. SD: Indira Devi, remember her? (R: Oh yes.) Used to talk about that they were like clouds over a lake that don’t touch the lake at all, they just pass by. (R: Yes.) They’re reflected in a way, but they don’t affect the stillness or bother whatsoever. (R: You can say that.) SN: Robert the thought came to me, well does a Jnani cry? And then I thought well does a Jnani laugh? And then I thought well does a Jnani eat? It’s so stupid. (laughter) (R: Exactly.) Yeah, I mean, you know the mind wants to say, “well does a Jnani cry?” But then think about it. R: This is the karma of the body, but I-am not the body. That’s the way you see it. SD: If you cry or Robert cries is that what remains of you as a body is that real? R: No what you’re seeing, is like you’re seeing the body, the body is going through that, but I’m not. (SD: Aren’t you the real you moved, by those feelings?) There’s nothing to be moved, but that’s how it appears. (laughter) SN: Because you know Ramana cried and so to understand. (R: That’s difficult to understand.) Yeah so it’s a very profound thing because some people will react, “Well why does a Jnani or why does Robert do this? Why did Ramana do that?” Of course they don’t understand, of course you can see why they can ask that. So something to ponder. R: Yes there is something to ponder because it’s beyond words. Only when you touch the deepest part of your Self can you understand that. I seem to be walking, I seem to be sleeping, I seem to be dreaming, I seem to be here with you and yet I’m not doing any of those things. (SD: But somehow we’re getting emotions from you.) That’s how it appears, that’s an appearance. (SD: Well it seems to happen only in your presence.) R: It’s like the sky is blue again, like a mirage in the desert. SN: It’s kind of like when you come to see Robert you get a chance to look in the mirror and then you say, “Ahh, here I-am, that’s who I-am.” (R: What you see is what you get.) But you said the last satsang that people think when you become self-realized that you have siddhas or whatever, and we would think that someone who is self realized is absolutely perfect. That’s why they don’t cry, they don’t fart, they don’t, you know, they’re just perfection and that’s not what this path is saying. (break in tape as another Robert continues) R: There’s a mysterious power, that’s prepared you for something like this and brought you here and there’ s a mysterious power that made me appear this way. SD: So that same power brought us together. (R: Exactly.) That’s why they say, “When you’re ready the Master will come.” R: Yes. We’ve prepared ourselves for this path a long time ago in passed lives in whatever we’ve done and here we are. SF: Every single feeling or thought regardless of quality of that omniscience, bliss from you Robert? (R: Bliss? I always feel Bliss.) With or without thoughts all the time. R: No thoughts. There’s an indescribable feeling of love and peace and bliss and happiness. It’s always available. (SD: Peace.) That’s always there but I can’t describe it, because it’s the natural state. (SD: It’s our natural state.) Yes, there are no words to describe it. SF: What I mean is the actual Jnani. Every thought, every feeling, everything, could be sometimes presence, could be sometimes limitation. But I have the feeling that maybe the Jnani, sees everything in bliss. So its bliss with a stimulus all the time. R: I see my Self wherever I look. So what I-am I see wherever I go. (SD: So you see perfection right?) Everything is perfect. Again it’s a difficult thing to explain. SN: And yet we see ourselves in whatever we see too. Except that you see perfection and we see whatever our projection is. R: Everybody sees differently. If I ask you all to look out the window and I ask you what do you see? I’ll get six, seven different answers. One person will say, “I see dirt in the street.” Another person will say, “I see the blue sky.” Somebody else will say, “I seeing my car being towed away.” Everybody will se something else. According to your state of consciousness. That’s what you see. But when I see. I see oneness. Like a moving picture and I see beyond the screen. SG: I don’t know how to describe this but there’s this feeling that comes. It’s more peaceful, more powerful silence. Beyond silence itself, but it permeates everything. Even the most noisiest situation. I’ve been to concerts and even within that, even loud rock concerts or parties or the most peaceful park scene, there’s still an underlying vast peace that doesn’t matter where I am and it’s as if that thing is so distant from you and yet it permeates you and it doesn’t matter where you are. You can be anywhere and there’s a vast – I can’t describe it. (R: You’re on the right track.) There’s a deafening silence, that’s just… (SD: That you can always call on?) No it’s there, you don’t have to call on it. It doesn’t matter where you are and what situation you’re in. I can’t describe it but… R: Let’s say here’s another example. Say for instance you started a fist fight and you’re all fighting with each other. So I see the fight, it’s not that I don’t see the fight but I see through it, like you were saying. I see through the fight. So I’m not disturbed because I know, all is well. (SG: It’s as if it doesn’t exist. It exists but there’s permeating through it…) Like when you go to a movie, you watch the violence on the screen. But something within you tells you that’s not real. It’s only a movie. SD: No matter how much you get caught up in it, you can get up and leave. R: Exactly, it’s the same thing. I look at the world and I see the world going on. But I realize the world has a middle and a beginning and an end. And this too shall pass. So I don’t get caught up on a minute of illusion. SG: In the practice on the path one can use every moment and every situation and shouldn’t just try to find peaceful places or peaceful moments but should permeate that in every moment and find that everywhere. (R: That sounds good.) It’s hard in the beginning I know. R: That’s why if you look at the three vessels I gave you. The first one when you begin, you have to be alone. You have to find time to be alone a lot. So you can work on yourself and become strong, then you can do what you said. (SG: Yeah.) SD: So the vehicles or the vessels are the way to that feeling? (R: Yes.) SG: So everything is holy and unholy, I mean everything is the same at that point. R: When you are by yourself a long time and you’re working on yourself you become stronger and stronger and stronger. (SD: Some people do and some people get cranky.) Well that’s because they have no practice. (SD: Yeah what about the people who are lonely?) We’re not talking about those people. We’re talking about people on a spiritual path. (SD: So even just being alone, but also pondering spiritual matters?) That’s why you’re alone. SN: It’s a wanting to be alone. (R: Yes.) Some people are alone but they don’t want to be alone. (SD: Right. It’s not even wanting to be alone, it’s what you do when you’re alone.) That too. SF: It’s a yearning. SN: Because one could hear the first vehicle, well because I heard this then I should do that and it’s not that, it’s something that you desire, something that you understand, it’s something that you do. And it’s also like meditation because when I was on another path of meditation and they would say that meditation is something that should be done lovingly, it should not be a burden, and for so many people it was a burden and they miss the whole point. SD: Would now be a good time to share about that retreat you went on cause you never really told us briefly what that path was about and how you kept going back to it. (Nerada talks about his experience when on retreat) R: (Robert responds to Neradas experience) You must be careful when you tell somebody, “You are God”. When it said in the Upanishads, “Ahum Brahman,” the true interpretation of that is, “I-am is Brahman.” So I-am is God, Not I-am God, because, I-am God, you’re saying my ego is God and that’s not true. (SN: Or how about you are the guru?) Well what part of you is the guru? (SN: Just to say that you are the guru?) You can say that, but explain it more specifically. Because this guy can say okay I’m a guru now that’s great. But when you say, “I Am is God” you’re speaking about your real nature. SD: Oh right, because you’re speaking of everything. Because everything is God. R: So be careful about that, because that can also build your ego up. So you say, “I am God, wow that’s great, I am God imagine that that’s wonderful and I can do anything I like.” (laughter) And you can actually freak out, I’ve seen it happen. People go and rob a bank, or go kill somebody they don’t care, I’m God I can’t do anything wrong. ST: I read an interesting story of a – Tibetan story – there was this young boy and his father was a painter in one of these temples and he painted these demons and demigods and the boy died. And as he was passing into the other worlds, he saw these very same beings because this was all he experienced visually and he wasn’t scared of them he just acted toward them in the very same way and they just went away. He just said, you don’t scare me. (SD: It’s just a creation of the mind.) Yeah, exactly. Well it’s just where he was at and how he approached it. SD: Well isn’t that the third fundamental that everything is egoless and has no source, isn’t that sort of what he’s talking about? (R: You can say that, yes.) SG: But if he was scared of those things, then they were real, very real. (R: Because his mind is giving them power.) Right. SD: Isn’t that the same thing you said on evil, the concept of evil? That it only exists if you believe in it? (R: Yes, true.) You said if you believe in it, you’ve granted it power and it’s existence. (R: Your mind creates it. Your mind creates everything.) SD: In the first fundamental, is it the same to say everything is a manifestation, or emanation, or projection. R: It doesn’t matter, you don’t have to change it. But you have to remember these things especially in the mornings when you get out of bed. Your mind will start thinking as soon as you wake up. Catch yourself and don’t allow it to think. If you’re feeling sorry for yourself, catch yourself and do something about it. Just realize that feeling sorry for yourself is a mental emanation, it’s not true, it’s not real. There’s no one to feel sorry. (students talk between themselves) R: Just to realize that all things are an emanation of the mind, doesn’t it make you feel good? (SD: Well you know how it occurs to me that if everything is an emanation of my mind why can’t I just make it more to my liking?) You can. (SD: Is that what they call creating ones own.) Creative minds. (SD: Like science of mind sort of?) Yes. (SD: Yes but that’s still on the mortal plane?) On the relative level. SD: If someone is coming toward you with a knife and you say, “Well these are just a projection of my mind,” how would you… R: And then you get stabbed. (SD: It’s only a dream anyway. No but how would you change it?) You would change it by pulling out a gun and shooting him. (SD: Or getting out of the way, you wouldn’t think about that because that’s the mind again thinking about you being stabbed.) We have to use common sense. (SD: Well can you give me an instance of how you can change it if you really…) Here’s what you would do. First you would have to get out of the way or whatever you have to do to stop the situation and then when you get home and you’re by yourself, you would ask yourself the question, “Why did I attract this? What am I that I attracted a condition like this?” because if it weren’t for your mind you wouldn’t have attracted it. So there’s something in your mind that pulled you to that condition. (SD: Is it your mind or is it karma?) Both, same thing. The same. Your mind is karma. (SD: Your mind is karma?) Yes. SK: Karma is action just another meaning for it. SD: So you know you hear these freak things like an innocent young girl killed alone in her apartment, I find that difficult how she might attract that. I find it easier to understand how that might be karmic. R: That’s how she attracted it, through karma. (SD: Cumulative karma?) Yes. But if you realize the third principle, the egolessness of all things, there’s no karma. (SK: Do you dissolve it with thoughts like that?) Yes immediately. SD: So if you wanted to change your earth reality and you asked, “Now how did I attract it?” That’s how you would change it? You would think what thought patterns am I… R: You would work on yourself. “Where did this come from? How did I get involved in this situation?” (SD: That’s true. Science of mind is not a bad path but it’s definitely mentally oriented. That would be kind of what they’re doing in feeling our reality?) No what they’re doing is they’re creating it again and again and again and again, it doesn’t stop. (SD: So they stay on the karmic wheel?) Yes. SK: This process seems to dissolve everything. (R: Yes.) SN: How do they finally break that cycle? R: By realizing the truth about your Self. (SN: What would differentiate one from another on that same path?) There’s no differentiation, when you know the truth, the whole cycle stops. SF: Karma is only for the non-self? R: Oh yes of course. As long as you believe you are the body there’s karma. So it all goes back to the first principle. Everything is an emanation of the mind. And there is no mind so nothing is happening. SD: So that’s why you take it to a degree you could turn it to a path on the earth? R: If you’re working with your mind. The mind appears to be very powerful. And you can do alot of things with it. (SD: So Science of mind is not incorrect, it’s just relative to the earth or astral plane, is that right?) To an extent. SN: So how did the ignorance originate? (R: It never did.) Yeah this is the paradox, it’s perfect. (R: How come the sky is blue? It never was.) SD: We are already realized but we don’t realize it, right? (laughs) There’s nothing to become, is there? (R: Exactly.) We are self-realized. But that’s what we’re talking about. R: But you don’t want to believe it, so you keep working on yourself until you know. (SD: Who doesn’t know?) You, everybody. Your ego. SN: Well it’s like saying life is a dream. But the dream doesn’t exist. (R: Yes.) SK: It’s a divine paradox. (SG: So wake up!) SD: Even though you’re not asleep. SF: So Robert, I’ve heard you several times say that everything is all predestined and what’s going to happen is going to happen, regardless of what you do, what’s bound to happen will happen. That implies the elusive egoic entity because in actuality nothing exists. R: Yes exactly. We go right back to the old saying, “As long as you believe that you are the body-mind phenomena, whatever’s going to happen will happen. (SF: Okay. Then from that sense the ajnani will have to leave all the things which aren’t supposed to happen to him?) He’ll have to live through it. (SF: Have to live through it? But those things are not of any concern to the Jnani.) No, because those things don’t really exist. (SF: Right. So if the Jnani can see the same things happen to his body?) Yes. (SF: And he would have rest.) Yes. SD: Yeah, because that’s just a certain kind of karma, not boomerang karma, but a karma like the arrow that’s been shot and still has to reach it’s destination, but to a Jnani it would be nonexistent. (SF: But his life is no anymore a concern to the Jnani.) Yeah, but he takes care of his body while he’s in it, but he knows it isn’t real. (laughter) (Students discuss how Robert takes care of his body and a jnani does) R: See I take all the stuff that Bob brings me. I get up in the morning, early and think about it. I throw everything in the blender, everything. Then I mix it up… (SG: Hows it taste?) It tastes good. (SD: Oh yeah, I bet.) I wouldn’t drink it if I didn’t like it. (SD: But if you don’t have it, you don’t take it right?) I don’t take it if I don’t have it. But I don’t think about it. It’s like a game. I put it in the blender then I mix everything, then I pour it over the… (SD: But you do that when you have it but if you don’t have it it’s the same difference.) I’ll eat something else. (SD: Yeah or nothing.) (Students continue discussion along these lines) R: Well everything becomes spontaneous, I walk to the park in the morning. I do push ups on the bars. So somebody asked me, “Why do you do push ups?” So I say, “Because the bars are there.” (laughter) If they weren’t there I wouldn’t do it. SD: Thank God the bars are there for our sake. We like to take of you at this point because our egos need you at this point. R: You’re just saying that. (SD: No I love you Robert, I want you in my life.) I’m always there. (SD: I know but I’m not strong enough to realize that you’re with me. I feel you with me all the time, but if and when you leave your body I hope I have the strength to realize it.) I probably out live everybody. (SD: Probably we’ll die first and you’ll be doing pushups on the bars.(laughs) SN: Ramana’s disciples didn’t understand though. (SD: I know. Remember they begged him not to leave and he said, “Where would I go?”) And even Christ’s followers didn’t understand. R: You only hear about the ones that didn’t understand. (SD: There must have been some who grasped it?) They keep silent. SN: And Robert said, the last satsang, I asked him a question whether we’re getting into people experiencing self-realization and I asked him whether he had witnessed people having that experience and so he’s seen it quite a few times. SD: How do most people react, do they start laughing, crying? R: They just wake up. (SD: What does it look like?) They just wake up. (SD: Isn’t there sometimes they start laughing like it’s a joke.) Oh yes that’s after. (SD: Do they cry for relief?) That’s after. (SD: Oh that’s after. The moment of realization is like opening your eyes or the veil is removed?) Like waking up in the morning. Say, “now I see.” There’s nothing mysterious about it. (SD: About the process?) Yes, It’s just like we’re all in the dream and we’re all asking, “How is it when you wake up, how is it when we wake up,” and I keep saying, “You just wake up.” But you say, “I don’t understand, what kind of a feeling do you have?” The same feeling you have when you wake up now. You just wake up. (SD: Yeah, there you are.) But not when you think. (SD: What was the thing that you said you would like to have on the phone, when you wake up, there you are.) (laughs) You know what I mean, when I say, “just wake up” It’s not like when you wake up now and your mind starts thinking. It’s the moment before you start thinking, that’s how it is. (SD: I’m not aware of that, Robert.) Catch yourself, before you think about it. Think about it the night before. (SD: You mean of being aware of that moment before you start to think?) Yes. (SD: Because the first thing I’m aware of is my thought.) Because you started to think. But there is a split second there, between waking and thinking, that you’re self-realized. (SD: So you think the night before, you sort of try to program yourself to be aware of that state.) In a way you can do that, yes. SG: It’s like when you’re daydreaming and you’re gazing, but you’re not gazing at any thing in particular and you’re not thinking. SN: And also you know how you’re very tired? It happens to me often and I sit in that chair and I listen to tapes and I wait till I’m tired and sometimes I might meditate even during the day and then I’ll fall asleep when I’m meditating and sometimes I won’t get right up or lie down in a bed I’ll just go in and out, in and out, so you get a semblance of waking up in the morning when you’re in that state. So at night sometimes you should try to stay awake a little bit when you’re feeling sleepy and you go in and out. SD: Is that sort of what they refer to in earth terms as the alpha state? R: Well the alpha state is more of a psychological state. In way it’s like that, but that’s more like samadhi. (SD: What, the alpha state is more like samadhi or the state you’re talking about?) The state I’m talking about is beyond samadhi. (SD: It’s beyond samadhi? So alpha is like samadhi?) Yes. Well of course the state I’m talking about is no state whatsoever. As long it’s a state it’s not that. You just become your Self. The Self you’ve always been. Here I am, da, daa. (laughs) SK: (Student talks about a Twilight show on TV night before. Reminds of this state) R: He brought some Prashad. So lets cut up the apple and eat it. (general talk between students) R: When we eat prashad we have to know what we’re doing, you know. We shouldn’t just eat it. For we have to realize that we’re eating God. We sort of have an attitude of gratitude. We’re able to eat blessed food. It’s part of a ritual, but it’s still good. SD: Like breaking bread? (R: Yes.) SK: Is that the original meaning of blessings before food? (R: Yes.) Food is God also, but then it became a blessing of God. SD: But everything is God so is this plate and the cups, even the styrofoam. (laughs) R: But the food that’s prashad is something we eat, so it merges with your blood and your guts and everything else. SD: I remember once you said you must eat flesh referring to eating meat, to everyone that would be eating God. Wouldn’t that apply to all foods though? (R: Yes.) (more general talk) R: Another one of the signs that you see in yourself on the way to self-realization is you begin to have reverence for everything. The ground that you walk on, the minerals, the animals, the vegetables. You have respect and reverence for everything. SD: Even the things that seem negative? (R: Yes.) Really? (R: Everything.) SD: That’s difficult for me because (mentions something about smog?) R: Because, you’re seeing that. Who sees that? (SD: My ego, the mind.) So when you have reverence for something you have no quarrel with it. (SD: But I do have a quarrel with the smog.) Then it will hurt you. What ever you have a quarrel with, it has the power to hurt you. But when you reconcile yourself with the smog, it loses it’s power to hurt. (SD: Is reconciling the same as reverence?) In a way. Take the human condition. If I have a quarrel with you and if I reconcile myself with you then I have reverence for you, then you no longer want to hurt me… (tape ends abruptly)