Robert Adams

Satsang Recording

Sitting in the Silence

Advaita Satsang with Robert Adams
Sitting in the Silence

Robert: Most of you have come here to hear me talk, and I say to you that sitting in the silence is more potent than any words you can ever hear. If you came just to hear me talk you’re going to be disappointed, for I am not a public speaker, I am not a lecturer and I really have nothing to say. But yet most of you function by listening to people talk. Think back in retrospect. How many teachers have you heard during your life? Literally hundreds. How many books have you read, and where are you? Here! If the talks and the books did you any good you wouldn’t be here at all. You’re here because you’re still seeking, you’re still searching, you’re trying to find something external to yourself and you cannot do that. What you’re looking for, you already are. There is nowhere to go and there’s nothing to do. Everything already is. There is no one that can change it for you. When you sit in the silence you have to deal with your own thoughts. Most people do not like to do this, so they want to hear me talk. When they’re finished here they go home and watch the TV, they hear someone else talk. Then they talk to their families, they go to a movie and there’s nothing but talk, talk, talk, talk, talk. It gets you nowhere. Many of you do not like to sit in the silence for your mind attacks you. It brings up all sorts of things about the past and worries about the future. So you want to be entertained. You want to hear good words, profound knowledge. There is no profound knowledge. There are no good words. Everything you’ve been taught is a lie. The only truth that exists is your Self, but who is the Self? The Self is you, just the way you are. The mistake most people make is they want to change themselves. How can you change yourself? You think you’ve got problems, or you think you’ve got a bad mind, or you think something is wrong and you want to change that. Those things don’t exist. There is nothing to change. That’s what I mean when I say, “Be your Self, just the way you are.” Your Self, just the way you are is spontaneous, lives in the now, has no time to worry or think. When you are your Self you are God, you are consciousness, you are absolute reality. You are always yourself. You never were anyone else. You never were anything else. Your nature is divine. You are not what you appear to be. The only thing you have to remove is the appearance, or the belief in the appearance, for the appearance is false. Most of you still believe you are the body-mind phenomena. No matter how many times I tell you you are not the body-mind, you still keep identifying with the body and mind, that’s false, that doesn’t exist. But what is this body all about? If you look at your body with an electric microscope, an electronic microscope you will see trillions, and trillions and trillions of atoms. What is an atom? Science tells us that an atom has a proton, which is the center, and electrons swirling all around the protons. Your body appears to be made of trillions, and trillions and trillions of atoms, which means it’s always in a state of flux. You are not as solid as you believe. Nothing in the world is solid. Now the amazing thing about all this is you are the microcosm in the macrocosm. Which means you are a small universe in a large universe. If you look at the universe, it’s composed of galaxies and solar systems. In each galaxy there are trillions and trillions of solar systems. What is a solar system? It’s a sun with planets revolving around it. Isn’t that just like the atom? That’s why in scripture it tells you, “We live in the body of God,” for the whole universe appears to be some pulsating being. It pulsates. It breathes. Can you imagine that? The universe actually breathes just like you breathe. You are a replica of the universe. If you found yourself the size of an atom in your body, you would be in a universe. You would look up and you would see suns, stars, planets, but they’re all taking place in your body. It’s mind boggling. So you are not what you appear to be. Therefore when I say you are not the body it is not only spiritual, it’s scientific. There are spaces between the atoms just as there are spaces between the atoms that you see up in the sky, the planets. The space between the molecules, and the atoms and the electrons is what we call space. That’s what we see with our eyes, space, but is it really space? Sages tell us it’s actually consciousness. What is consciousness? Something that is conscious. What this means is there is a life force which is the substratum of all existence. What is that life force? What is the cause of creation? What is at the bottom of all of this? The answer, my dear friends, is you. You are the cause of all creation, and you don’t exist as you. Therefore creation as it appears to be also does not exist. In other words, creation only exists because you exist. When you go to sleep at night what happens to creation? It no longer exists for you. I know you can say, “Well I know it’s there anyway.” No you don’t. Who knows? You’re in a state of deep sleep. As far as you’re concerned you’re dead. That’s how it is when it comes time to leave your body. You become consciousness itself. The difference between sleeping and being realized is that when you’re asleep you’re realized, but you’re not conscious of it. When you are realized, you are conscious of the whole game. So you see, when you really see what you’re made of, atoms, trillions and trillions of atoms, you are not who you think you are. You’ve been fooled. Awaken! Why should you awaken? When you look at the world today, and you see what’s happening, you become completely confused. You have no idea why there’s war, man’s inhumanity to man. There’s going to be a civil war in Russia. They’re fighting in South America. In Africa there’s upheavals. There appears to be no peace anywhere. Yet reality is love. Reality is peace. Reality is infinite happiness. It doesn’t make any sense. How can reality be happiness, love and peace when you behold the effect of reality which appears to be chaos and confusion and man’s inhumanity to man? You have been hypnotized. Have you ever watched a hypnotist? A good hypnotist can hypnotize you and make you believe almost anything. The universal hypnosis is called maya. It makes me believe I’m Robert and have a life to live. It makes you believe you’re Joan, or Fred, or Henry or Mary and you have a life to live. You worry about your life. You have no patience. You always want to change things, make things better, improve this and improve that. It’s all a joke. You cannot improve anything. The only thing you can do is to wake up. When you wake up you see the world as a reflection, as a reflection of a mirror. The mirror is always the same. It never changes. The reflections has changed. The question is of course, then why are there reflections? Where do they come from? And as you know my answer is that they do not exist. It’s an analogy I give you to let you understand where everything is coming from. Only reality exists and you are that. Only consciousness exists and you are that. Only love exists and you are that. If you only realized who you were you would be the happiest person that ever lived, and I mean happy, totally happy, unchanging happiness. Is there such a thing? Yes there is. Unchanging peace. Unchanging love. But you have chosen to identify with the maya, with the unreality, and so you think you suffer. You believe your life is not what it should be. You compare yourself to someone else. You want to make changes. As you know by now, when you make those changes they only last a short time, then you’re back where you were before. The wise person, therefore, does really not look to change anything. They become quiet. They have patience. They work on themselves. They watch their thoughts, watch their actions and observe themselves getting angry, observe themselves getting depressed, observe themselves getting jealous and envious and the rest of it. Little by little they realize, “That’s not me. That’s hypnosis, that’s a lie.” They do not react to their condition. To the extent that they do not react to their condition, to that extent do they become free. They no longer care what anybody else is doing. They compare themselves with no one. They compete with no one. They simply watch themselves. They observe themselves. They see the mental confusion. They don’t run around shouting, “I am absolute reality. I am God. I am consciousness.” Rather, they see where they’re coming from and they leave everyone else alone. Such a being unfolds at a fast rate. It makes no difference what predicament such a being is in. It doesn’t matter, for such a being is already free. When the mind rests in the heart, that means when the mind does not go out any longer and identify with the world, when the mind rests in the heart there is peace, there is harmony, there is pure being. When you allow your mind to go out of your Self it begins to compare, it begins to judge, it begins to feel offended, and there is no peace. There’s no rest. How do you begin? Well, first you realize the place that you’re in right now, whether you think it’s good or bad, whether you think you’re happy or sad, whether you think you’re rich, or poor, or sick, or healthy, the place where you’re in right now is your right place. That’s the beginning. You stop trying to be someone else. You stop trying to change your life. You’re in your right place, right now, just the way you are. If you can become happy and peaceful in the place where you are right now, all of a sudden you will find circumstances will change in your favor, and then again you will be in your right place. Whatever change comes along as far as your body-mind is concerned, you are in your right place. The more you can see that, the more you can look at what I just said intellectually, intelligently, the more peaceful you become, the more the karmic patterns begin to break away and you begin to awaken. It may be gradual at first. You notice that things that used to annoy you, no longer annoy you. You notice that people that you live with, the conflicts you’ve had, they stop because you’ve stopped. There’s no more trying to get even. There’s no more trying to win your point. There’s no more trying to find the right book, or the right teacher, or the right anything. You remain centered. You remain free. When something comes along, whether it’s good or bad, you simply sit where you are and you ask, “To whom has this come?” and you laugh, for you have separated yourself from your body-mind and you begin to realize that your body-mind is going through the experience but not you. So there is nothing to worry about. There’s nothing to fear. There’s nothing that can upset you. There’s nothing that can harm you. You realize whatever someone does to your body, physically, or with words, or otherwise, can never, never hurt you because you are not your body. No matter what anyone tells you, no matter what you see with your eyes can never affect you, for you are not your mind. You have actually separated your Self from your body and your mind. That’s only the beginning. As you go further your body and your mind drop off. I don’t mean that you die. I mean that they become less and less important to you, and you no longer identify with them at all. You actually know, and you feel, and you experience, that your body and mind do not exist, yet you exist. You do not exist as your body or your mind. You exist as absolute reality, as consciousness, and you no longer believe that your body and your mind are a modification of consciousness. You just know that there is no body and there is no mind. You are egoless. There is no reason for your body, mind or the world to exist. You may first feel this slightly, but you will notice the greater the feeling, the greater the happiness. You are beginning to merge in consciousness. You are beginning to feel reality. The world goes on, people do what they always do, yet you see it quite differently. You no longer see the same world you used to see. It’s like reading a magazine. The images in a magazine are in front of you but you are not the magazine and you are not the images. Who you are may still be a mystery. Remember, as long as you can express it, it’s not that. Therefore you do not walk around telling everybody, “I am pure reality,” or “I am consciousness.” You remain silent. By their fruits ye shall know them. You become a light in the world of darkness. Automatically people come around you and they just feel good by being around you. You have found peace. It has always been you. You have really not found anything. You have just become your Self. Now let’s talk about you. Think about your experiences for a while, what you’re going through personally in your life, the things that worry you, the things that upset you, the things that make you cry. How can you allow things to have control over you? That’s what’s called blasphemy. Being the God that you are, you believe that someone or something can make you cry, can upset you, can make you feel bad, can make you want to make changes. As an example, there are so many people who come to me every day or call me on the phone and ask me, “Robert, when are we going to have a place of our own? We should go into the woods somewhere and be peaceful or have an ashram somewhere far away in the woods or the jungle.” And my answer is always the same. If you’re not peaceful now, you’re not going to find peace no matter where you go, because wherever you go, you’ve got to bring yourself with you. What makes you think you will find peace? If you’re a trouble-maker, if you’re a gossip spreader, do you think the change is going to change you? It will in the beginning, but soon you’ll be doing the same things you always do. You’ll be restless, you’ll find fault, you’ll look for reasons to curse people, be upset with others. So I say to you, stay just where you are. Once you have found your Self and you’ve found the semblance of peace and harmony, then see where you want to go, but do not go anywhere until you’ve found yourself. You and I both know people who come to Los Angeles for a while, then they foul everything up and they go somewhere else, San Francisco, then they foul everything up and they go to Oregon, they foul everything up and go to New York. It never ends. They’ve never seen themselves for who they are. They simply run and make changes. This is why last week I asked you for one week I want you to ask yourself the question, “Who am I?” Whenever something happens in your life, instead of trying to change it or take some action against it, simply ask yourself, “Who am I?” Whenever your mind starts thinking ask yourself, “Who am I?” Whenever you hear bad news on the TV, when you feel upset, ask yourself, “Who am I?” That’s all you had to do. Not to go any further than that. Now, what I’d like to do is hear the results of that experiment. Who would like to tell me or tell us what happened during the week? By posing the question to yourself, “Who am I?” Who would like to say something about that? (pause) Don’t all answer at once. (tape unclear student answers then Robert continues) R: That’s a good answer. The more she asked herself the question the more she realized she didn’t know. And what happened when you said, “I don’t know?” (SU: More and more I felt peace.) More and more you found a little peace? (SU: Makes you feel you want to do more practice. It seems the more I practice brings a feeling of ignorance…) R: And you say, “I don’t know?” Your humanhood can never know who she really is. As long as you’re trying to find the answer through human methods, it will never work. How do you feel now about that? (SU: I don’t know?) Okay, that’s good. She doesn’t know. That’s the beginning of wisdom. When you plead divine ignorance. When you don’t know what anything at all is. That is the beginning. Who else would like to share? SV: When I ask the question, it’s mind boggling. Nothing comes up except my ego keeps talking to myself. All my limitations come up the more I think of myself. R: That’s great. You are beginning to see what you really are. As far as your physical form is concerned. You are beginning to see all your limitations and everything that has been going on within you. That’s a start. Anyone else? ST: Only that I am, nothing more than that and then I would lose that, you know the world would pull me back to the same old rut so-to-speak So I would go back and forth, back and forth. (R: That’s normal.) That’s normal? I’ve did this more intensively than I’ve ever done it. R: Great. All this stuff that has been waiting to sprout like dormant seeds it’s all coming up. That’s what is supposed to happen. You should actually feel worse then you ever did before for all this stuff is beginning coming up. And as you keep watching yourself, as you keep looking at all of your stuff. All of your stuff begins to dissipate. Your mind and your thoughts become weaker and weaker and weaker. And your I becomes stronger and stronger. Until you begin to focus and hold on to the I and it’s revealed to you that all of your stuff is attached to the I. I have been the cause of my own misery. I have been responsible for everything that has happened to me. No matter how it looks I am responsible. Therefore if I goes the responsibility goes. And everything else goes with the I. That all should come to you. Anyone else like to share with us. SS: The reality was more intense afterwards more than before. (R: Yes.) More of a dream existence. R: That is very good you are having a good experience. (SS: Thank you.) It should become more intense for up to now you just allow all of your stuff to come forth to make you angry or upset or whatever. But now you are taking a good look at it. And you’re realizing what is really going on within your mind. And as you continue to practice you will soon realize, “But wait a minute I am not my mind because after all I am looking at my mind. So how can I be my mind if I am observing my thoughts. I is observing the thoughts. Therefore I cannot be these things. I cannot be my depression or my hang ups, or anything else because I am observing them.” Then, “Who am I?” and you keep silent. “Who am I?” It’s similar to the atom I was talking about. In between the atom, the proton, the electron there is space, which is consciousness. In the same manner, in between, “Who am I?” there is the real Self. Every time you say, “Who am I?” and you wait, something is happening to you. Your old self is being depleted and your real Self will begin to take place in the space between “who am I?” You will come to that conclusion yourself as you keep practicing. Anyone else like to share? SH: It seems to me the question you stated in the first place doesn’t know who and there is also no I, there is just am-ness period. (R: You can also say there is no “am.”) Then there’s nothing at all. (R: And there is no consciousness and no reality.) Okay now you’ve got it. (R: And there is no searching and there is no seeking.) (tape damage) SC: Can I think there is something else then ask a question that answers it. R: As you keep inquiring with your mind. It’s like a policeman becoming a thief to catch a thief. As you keep asking and inquiring the mind turns on itself. It becomes weaker and weaker until it dissipates completely. SN: Robert, if and when one gets rid of the ego. One doesn’t get rid of the samskaras and their tendencies from their personality. So their actions can seem the same but it’s the attachment it’s how they view that. Is that true? (R: To an extent. The actions may appear the same to others. But to the one who is realized there are no actions.) What I am saying is if one has a temperament to be an intellectual or philosophical or emotional or whatever their samskaras or personality or character is. If in the process one gets rid of their ego one doesn’t stop being what they are? R: It depends. It’s like the example of the electric fan. When you turn off the fan there is no more power but the fan still spins around until it stops by itself. So when some people transcend they still have some of their samskaras left over. But they are burning themselves out until there is nothing. Everyone is different. SN: Some may think that well you become holy when all of a sudden you become an ocean of compassion all of these things. Do you see what I’m saying? Or are you just as you are? R: You are as you are. But you’re consciousness. You’re pure being. How others see you is up to them. But you’ve become absolute reality. I know what you’re talking about because it appears that some Jnanis have all kind of traits. That’s why I give you the example of the electric fan. Their ego has been cut and they are totally free but the fan is still spinning. Their body is still going through certain acts and doing certain things until it stops completely. That’s why there appears to be a certain Masters, Jnanis that seem to have some negative traits. But that’s for others to pledge. The person who has experienced freedom, liberation is totally free. ST: (student asks question not clear) (R: Semantics yes. It’s the same thing. It depends where a teacher is coming from and what they mean by it.) Would God-realization be if you are totally pervasive and aware of all in maya and so I can say that you are not aware of all in maya, and self-realization you are not aware of maya, you’re just aware of your beingness. R: It depends what school you’re coming from. In my explanation, in my experience, God realization and self-realization is the same. There is no one to realize. As long as there is someone left over to realize it is not self-realization. You cannot say, “I am selfrealized, I no longer exist.” There is no one to be realized. Otherwise it’s duality, there is not two. There’s not I who has become self-realized there is just realization. There is really nothing at all. Words spoil it. Therefore there are people who have to go after Godrealization and there are people who give their own meaning to self-realization. This is why words keep us back. The more we talk about these things. The more confused we become and the less we really know. It all has to do with silence. In silence there is strength. When we try to explain it we spoil it. (Question cannot be heard. We pick up Robert midway of answer.) R: …Just by being here there is something about you that’s different. It wants to awaken. And if you simply ask yourself, “Who am I?” without answering, then the answer will come eventually. (tape damage) SF: (Picked up at end of students question)…the other one is that I didn’t know the answer and I really couldn’t get the answer in any kind of mental frame, that’s just mental talking, and that’s about it. R: That’s exactly what’s supposed to happen. Again when you first begin, “Who am I?” procedure, all the stuff is going to come up. (SF: With a vengeance.) Everything will come up and attack you from all sides and you are supposed to observe and watch and see all the stuff and to realize, “Hey wait a minute that’s not me! I am not that. If I am not that then who am I?” (tape damage) (Robert continues to answer a question about prayer) R: Prayer has to do with all those things. Pray for them. Prayer makes you peaceful. Makes you believe that somebody is listening to you. It’s like telling a psychiatrist your troubles. After all to whom do you pray? You say, “I pray to God.” Where does God live? Who is God? And soon you discover you’re praying to yourself. And it helps. This leads you to identify with your Self. The one that you pray to. And become that one. For there is only one, there are not two. There is not one who prays and one who listens. The prayer and the listener are the same person. There is no differentiation. ST: In the Arabic tradition they pray to Allah and I’m sure now the bombs are falling on them, they all are praying to Allah. And they seem to sacrifice their life to that, because of their belief system. But it doesn’t change the fact that the allied forces keep bombing them until they don’t exist. So there is no way out of this dilemma in their prayer. They may be peaceful but still they are annihilated with the bombs. (R: What has that got to do with anything?) Well in the reality in maya, I’m saying is prayer affecting maya or is it an illusion that we pray. I have prayed for many people in my life but has never was effective. R: If a person is really sincere and they really feel that what they are doing is correct, this will help. Because your mind is very powerful and the prayer is done through your mind. So in the maya you can create conditions when you pray. But first you must really believe mentally what you are praying for. S: (Question picked up toward the end) …how do you still worship God if you still…? R: That’s possible. It has to do with your karma, and your samskaras and the rest of it that doesn’t exist. Do not judge anyone else, worry about yourself… (tape ends abruptly)