The Look

?????????? y’all! That’s “happy new year” for those who can’t read Japanese.

Here’s an email I got recently.


Attached is a picture of Behring Breivik, the guy who shot, bombed and killed about 77 people in Norway this summer. He has been examined by psychiatrists and they have come to the conclusion that he is/was a paranoid schizophrenic, meaning he was insane at the time of his murderous actions.

But look at his picture closely, look at his eyes…he is very balanced according to the Tibetan theory of “eye science.”

I sometimes ask myself if this means that Hitler, Stalin, Osama and all other crazy wackos are also just paranoid schizos then?

So are these people really just sick or are they just simply “evil” ? This guy Behring Breivik planned and planned and worked at this for years and went to such lengths to kill these people that it is very hard for me to consider him sick, as most healthy and very intelligent people would not have managed the task of producing, orchestrating and manifesting such a killing even if they wanted to. Should that not say something about his sanity?

I think this is a really important question. And to me the question is, What is sanity and how does it relate to Enlightenment?

I think it’s clear that there is no real correlation between I.Q. and morality. Some of the most immoral people in history have been extremely intelligent as measured by the accepted standards of measuring such things. Several of the people who followed Shoko Asahara’s orders and placed poison gas on the Tokyo subway system were highly educated. Many of the top leaders of the Nazi party were also very brainy.

This means that the ability to carefully plan out and execute some specific operation does not relate at all with being a moral person. It is quite possible to create a very complex proceedure and to carry it out without having any sense of morality. Whatever you think really happened in Lower Manhattan on the morning of September 11, 2001, it was clear proof that planning and executing complex schemes does not require any sense of morality. Whoever did that stuff was very smart. I’m sure they all knew how to conduct themselves socially and be accepted as sane. If not, they wouldn’t have been able to interact with the many people they needed to deal with in order to accomplish their goal. These were not raving lunatics. They never are…

But one would expect that enlightenment in the Buddhist sense would correlate with morality and just basic human decency. This is where things get tricky. Because it all depends on how one defines enlightenment.

The general consensus seems to be that an enlightened person is one who has undergone what they call an “enlightenment experience.” This experience reveals to the enlightened person the true nature of reality. After having had this experience, the person is transformed into something more than what he or she was before.

But I suspect there is precious little more correlation between true morality and the ability to have one of these so-called “enlightenment experiences” than there is between true morality and the ability to score high on an I.Q. test.

OK. I’ll back off a little there. At some level an “enlightenment experience” shows the person who has it the real meaning of moral action — that anything one does to another person is something one does to oneself. And I don’t mean this in any kind of figurative or metaphorical sense. I mean that when Moe hits Curly on the head with a sledgehammer, Moe is really only hitting Moe on the head with a sledgehammer. It only appears to be Curly getting hit.

But that’s not always what gets labeled as an “enlightenment experience.” Often what passes for an “enlightenment experience” is something quite different. Sometimes it’s much more like a drug-induced hallucination. People on psychedelic drugs often report feeling at one with the universe. But it’s not the same kind of oneness. It’s a oneness in which the experiencer owns that oneness and incorporates it into his/her sense of self, thereby making that sense of self infinitely big and infinitely exclusive.

Even if an “enlightenment experience” is genuine, the ego is very powerful and exceedingly clever. Absolutely anything, even a true experience of oneness with all things, can be transformed into something the ego can use to bolster itself.

As for the ability to achieve the stereotypical “look” that a realized master is supposed to have, this is even less correlated with morality or even with enlightenment. A decent actor can convincingly act out a variety or roles even when the actor has not experienced anything like what the character he’s portraying is supposed to have experienced. It’s easy to look the part of the balanced guru without being the least bit balanced.


Osama bin Laden could do it.


Shoko Asahara can do it.


Kirtanananda Swami Bhaktipada, who allegedly ordered several killings on the New Vrindaban Hare Krishna farm community could do it.


I suspect that Mike Myers can do it but refrained from doing it lest he look too much like his buddy…


…Deepak Chopra who has really got it down!

Which isn’t to say Deepak is anything like Osama bin Laden, Shoko Asahara and Kirtananda. I don’t think he is at all. But that beatific grin he’s mastered doesn’t prove it.

So sanity is something quite difficult to define. Like the famous quote about pornography, “you know it when you see it.” But you don’t know it just because someone looks the way the media tells you they’re supposed to. It’s much more subtle.

And people are uncomfortable with that. They want easy definitions that never change. Unfortunately, in real life easy definitions that never change are hard to come by. They want stereotypes that are reliable. But stereotypes are never reliable.

224 Responses

  1. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 4, 2012 at 6:10 pm | |

    Yes, I was a devotee of Adi Da for a very long time, on and off. And yes, I had a "psychic" relation with him for most of our time together, including after his death. I was also one of his strongest critics. Not sure how this bears on this conversation, but I'm glad you think you've destroyed my credibility. That kind of shoots yours down even worse. As if credibility were a high value concept here in any case.

  2. Mysterion
    Mysterion January 4, 2012 at 6:11 pm | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  3. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 4, 2012 at 6:15 pm | |

    Fred,

    That's a long story, especially for those of you who don't know much of Adi Da. He's a real hard case, and yes, I was involved for a very long time knowing that he was engaged in a lot of crazy ass stuff, and I kept at it because of what I found incredibly genuine in the midst of his excesses and even perversions. Call it karma, call it what you will. It was one helluva strange relationship, I can say that much. Puts Genpo to shame. But I did learn a lot from it also. Especially about how to laugh and feel grateful no matter what kind of crap one goes through.

  4. Zenleo
    Zenleo January 4, 2012 at 6:22 pm | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 4, 2012 at 6:24 pm | |

    Mysterion, you are way off in thinking Adi Da merely claimed to be some ascended master. That's chump change in his self-image. In his view, he's the greatest and only completely enlightened Avatar in the history of not just this universe, but all the manifest cosmos. So you insult him by comparing him to such middle-of-the-road claimants as Ballard. He's far more grandiose than that.

  6. Zenleo
    Zenleo January 4, 2012 at 6:25 pm | |

    Broken Yogi, if you started a University you could call it BYU for short. Anyhow a few final points to make:

    (( but it's the experience that is our karma, not the position we occupy.))

    I think the position means everything in the world. Rather than being the one kicked or the one kicking it's time to stop and pay attention to your actions. I believe paying attention and attempting to be thoughtful about life's situations is the thing that is important. If not, then negative consequences can develop when the one being kicked has had enough and wants to get even.

    ((No, not faith, but observation of the fine detail of our own experience when we are either boot or ass, and the alternation of the two. Seeing is believing. Faith is something else entirely))

    Yes seeing is believing and that is why I neither buy Karma nor Heaven or Hell. Karma to me seems to be some sort of reward for right behavior, or it works out that way. It's a nice thought, it is sort of like the Golden Rule, but some people and life situations are not Golden.

    So in my thinking it all has to stop, it does not matter to think about the kicking or being kicked, it all has to stop and then observe….
    …..observe what?

    This whole message string makes me feel like I have just awaken….awaken after a heavy night of drinking!

    Thanks for the comments and have a great evening.

    Cheers

    Leo

  7. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 4, 2012 at 6:36 pm | |

    Leo,

    The position we are in never stays the same however. If that's what matters, then life is hopeless, because it just goes round and round, and we never stay on top, or bottom, kicker or kickee, for long. So that can't be what matters.

    But I agree that paying attention to this cyclic pattern does matter. It tells us that the answers we are looking for are not in the “how do I learn to kick better and stay on top?” category. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Being genuinely thoughtful means something more than learning how to manipulate one's relationship to the world, or even how to achieve some imaginary “harmony” where everyone just gets along. It doesn't exist, because of that nasty law of dukkha, the first noble truth. Doesn't stop people from trying, but it does guarantee they end up frustrated.

    Yes seeing is believing and that is why I neither buy Karma nor Heaven or Hell. Karma to me seems to be some sort of reward for right behavior, or it works out that way. It's a nice thought, it is sort of like the Golden Rule, but some people and life situations are not Golden.

    Well, I don't believe in that notion of karma either. It's like suggesting that gravity rewards those who obey its laws. That's more of a metaphorical way of looking at it. It doesn't mean gravity is unreal, however, and neither is karma.

    So in my thinking it all has to stop, it does not matter to think about the kicking or being kicked, it all has to stop and then observe….
    …..observe what?

    Yes, it does have to stop. But for it to stop, you have to cut it off at the root, not at the leaves or branches. So you have to observe yourself deeply, not superficially. You have to go to the source of the ego, not just stop at the ego itself and try to work its problems out.

    And thanks to you for some good fun. Hope no small animals were hurt.

  8. Zenleo
    Zenleo January 4, 2012 at 7:11 pm | |

    BYU,

    That last comment was more clear and it's a good note to end on, thank you.

    Also the small dog is still alive and not harmed in anyway but we do not however know if it has the Buddha Nature.

    Cheers!

    Leo

  9. Anonymous
    Anonymous January 4, 2012 at 7:12 pm | |

    Brad, This was one of the silliest posting you have ever made as measured by the accepted standards of measuring such things.

  10. Mark Foote
    Mark Foote January 4, 2012 at 9:21 pm | |

    Mysterion, thanks for the Searle links. I sure recognize the style if not the name, fine, fine work.

    And for the Hittleman link. Very interesting. So little time, so many human lives behind the look.

    My connectedness, I learned doing the soft-slam at Mabuhay Gardens in the eighties. Sort of like blindfold Aikido at a punk rock emporium that turned out to have more indie rock than punk. Love the music, love the people who dance, love the way the miscreants cleared space to dance at Mabuhay by shoving each other into the spectators.

    As my favorite non-guru Kobun said:

    "When you sit, the cushion sits with you. If you wear glasses, the glasses sit with you. Clothing sits with you. House sits with you. People who are moving around outside all sit with you. They don't take the sitting posture!" (from Shikan taza on the Jikoji website).

    Same is true for dancing. Same for Moe & Curly Joe, I suppose.

    PTSD, yogini, did you see that they now believe respect for the enemy is an important part of the resolution of PTSD?-

    PTSD Therapy: Restoring Honor to the Enemy

    Guess that fall along the lines of psychology as opposed to neurology, but I have no idea, just thought it was something new.

  11. nemisisx
    nemisisx January 4, 2012 at 10:19 pm | |

    Broken Yogi "Yes, I was a devotee of Adi Da for a very long time, on and off. And yes, I had a "psychic" relation with him for most of our time together, including after his death. I was also one of his strongest critics."

    Hi, I am a current devotee of Adi Da do you still consider yourself a critic? I haven't read any of your stuff for some time, but our paths did cross briefly around 2002 and I left you with the rather smart ass comment "Hope you find what you are looking for" and "May your search bear fruit" or something of that nature.If anyone is familiar with Adi Da's teaching you may see the sarcastic irony in this.

    There is a good blog out now that shows a lot of what has been hidden by all the bad press and so on(the good stuff that is) about Adi Da and Adidam particularly the arts of devotees some really beautiful works in progress may be appreciated by friend or foe.

    On the matter of mental illness, I have to agree with BY mostly, having had several friends with schizophrenia, though some people do seem to just grow out of these conditions as they age, or they become less severe, it's different to actual brain damage as in intellectually disabled people from birth, they can be quite happy and socially adapted.

  12. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 4, 2012 at 11:51 pm | |

    Nemisisx,

    I don't have any particular designation for myself Da-wise anymore. I praise what I see as good in him, and criticize what isn't. There's quite a lot on both sides of that list. Most devotees would view me as a critic, since I don't whitewash everything he did as Divine, and point out some really awful crap that he pulled. On some issues, however, I'm more than happy to defend him, not that anyone much cares.

    I've received quite a few hostile comments from Da's devotees since I left the scene, including at my blog. No big deal. I'm used to the smart-asses who think they sit in God's catbird seat. Eventually, they figure things out. Have you? Life has a way of humbling the proud to their own benefit.

    I don't think the bad press Adidam has received over the years has hidden anything. It's Da and his devotees who have been doing most of the hiding in reaction to it. Refusing to deal with the obviously genuine criticism Da's gotten, and then playing victim and refusing to live openly in relationship to the world he presumes to be the World-Teacher of turns out to be a really bad strategy. It's good to see some folks coming out from under that cultural suppression, and I hope they keep it up. Eo Anderson's experience with that seems like a bit of step backwards though. Regardless of what one thinks of his spiritual attainment, he was very creative and had a lot of humor and devotion. Even I enjoyed his site occasionally, before they trashed it.

    Still, there's plenty of good and talented people in Adidam who ought to be able to make something beautiful from the compost of their experience there, if they have the courage to simply be themselves rather than merely seeking the approval of the authorities. Always liked Nara, btw. I hope her father's health has improved. Her art seems sweet, not really my style, but some of it I really like. I tend to enjoy genuine devotion no matter what the tradition or object or style.

  13. nemisisx
    nemisisx January 5, 2012 at 12:34 am | |

    @Broken Yogi
    With the spiraled light blog as far as I know that was copyright issues only, a lot could be said about it, but that was all it was about, and more coming both friendly works and unfriendly.

    "I don't think the bad press Adidam has received over the years has hidden anything."

    Disagree very strongly on that, when a huge amount of muck is thrown at any group, or person,as it has been, then the majority of people can't see passed the muck, yet there is a wonderful depth and culture "hidden" to this day in Adi Da's work and in the community itself. It sometimes reminds me of a lost tribe, in the esoteric sense. I know I am talking to the wrong person here on this point, but I remain firm on this one, it's a diamond hidden in the dirt, so to speak.

  14. Lapwing
    Lapwing January 5, 2012 at 12:49 am | |

    There's no eye science? I feel so sad inside. :(

  15. Lapwing
    Lapwing January 5, 2012 at 1:07 am | |

    In fact, NO. If you want something done right, sometimes you have to do it yourself. I'm going to make my own damn Tibetan eye science and it's going to be AMAZING (but may be lacking in fact).

  16. Unbroken Yogini
    Unbroken Yogini January 5, 2012 at 3:14 am | |

    @Mark Foote,

    I've not seen the research.

    It is true that changing how we see things is part of the process. For a soldier I can see that seeing the enemy as a soldier 'like me' would be an important part of it.

    For other scenarios it might be different. Being able to see alternative interpretations is also part of it.

    Psyhology and Neurology entwine and both have to be worked on.One without the other doesn't seem to work.

    The metaphor that springs to mind is of a fried computer. Instead of 5v being put i to the chips 500v has been put through and now some ciruits have been burned out, some permanently on, some switches fused open and some just unreachable any more.

    The neurology part is like trying to wire in alternative switches, bypass some ciruits, rebuild other, reroute between them all the while dealing with a brain that doesn't seem to work like it used to.

    Obviously the metaphor is flawed but I think less so than the idea that the brain is sick and health returns it to the same state as before. Adaptation leads to resilience.

  17. Unbroken Yogini
    Unbroken Yogini January 5, 2012 at 3:34 am | |

    @Broken Yogi

    So you see frustration and a girl that cannot get a guy? 10/10 for projection. 0/10 for accuracy.

    i'm not trying to win a debate here. If we hold different views the options are that either one of us chnges those views or we both continue to hold those views. If the latter then given the arbitrariness of such positions it serves no purpose to continue a conersation in the same vein.

    One of the difficulties in PTSD recovey is the loss of ability to sustain intimate relationships. Another is that some people sense weakness and seek a domination thing and so you can attract the wrong type of relationship.

    Part of recovery is steering clear of the wrong kind of relationships, recognising when you are attracting them, reogmising when to say no.

    Another part is cultivating the healthier relationships, recognising when to say yes, recognising when to say 'not today'.

    So in fact last year I had two relationships with guys. Each one I saw as a stepping stone, building towards the ability to sustain and spot more initimate relationship potentials.

    After a few months of stock-taking I'm back on the market and more aware of how to ignore the bad boys and spot the good guys.

    But there's also all this non-dual stuff. There are degrees of intimacy. Fortunately there is Yogidar and a few beeps on my scanner :-)

  18. anon #108
    anon #108 January 5, 2012 at 3:50 am | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  19. anon #108
    anon #108 January 5, 2012 at 3:57 am | |

    Broken Yogi,

    Watching "The Primacy of Consciousness" would go a long way to clarify for you what Peter Russell means by Atman is Brahman (not that I'm recommending it…I found it interesting). Having watched it myself and having read your comments here, I'd be very surprised if his understanding is significantly different from yours.

    Until such time as the Universal Consciousness finds a way to post on blogs, I'll read your responses to me and others, and mine to you, as expressions of (what I believe you mean by) ego. And I'll continue to read analyses of the relationship of the constituent elements of reality as more or less informed guesses, or as pictures or models which, when examined, collapse.

    Some models – particularly metaphysical ones – tend to appeal to those seeking answers to big questions, and when understood – or worse, 'experienced' – can flatter (what I believe you mean by) the ego into believing it is enlightened. And so – If I ever have an experience that feels anything like “I (Atman/'true self') am the Universe. The Universe is me.” I hope I’ll remember to be very careful about how much importance I ascribe to it, and very careful about the name(s) I might want to give it.

  20. Anonymous
    Anonymous January 5, 2012 at 4:28 am | |

    The Love Guru

    great movie !!! TM.

  21. Timmy
    Timmy January 5, 2012 at 5:53 am | |

    TIMMY !!!

  22. Soft Troll
    Soft Troll January 5, 2012 at 6:20 am | |

    Broken Yogi wrote

    …and yet because they persist in human populations and are not weeded out, they also must confer some benefits…

    There is no reason why they 'must' confer benefits. This is an oversimplification to which I doubt any natural selection theorists would agree.

  23. Fred
    Fred January 5, 2012 at 8:32 am | |

    Being a sociopathic beserker served
    a purpose in 800 AD Norway. Rapists
    and killers left their DNA in a
    brutal world where brutality was
    the norm.

  24. Soft Troll
    Soft Troll January 5, 2012 at 9:40 am | |

    Sociopathic behaviours 'serve a purpose' for individuals in the present day, Fred.

    DNA fairy tales have their place too.

  25. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:18 am | |

    Nemisisx,

    You are definitely talking to the wrong person if you want sell me a snowjob, but if you just want to talk about the real life problems Adidam faces, I'm your man.

    I would agree that there are many diamonds buried in the bullshit of Adidam, but let's not pretend that's the fault of dissidents or critics or the media. Adi Da crapped out most of that bullshit, and devotees spread it around to the point where you can't help noticing the stink most everywhere you look. Merely talking about the reality of it isn't what covers up the diamonds, it is the original bullshit that does that.

    I know full well that there are great and wonderful people in Adidam who care a lot about spirituality, even while having to shovel shit just to stay in place. Adi Da was himself one of them in many respects. It's just such an awful strain to have to pretend that all the bullshit is made of diamond also, and that the stink you smell is perfume. Noticing this is necessary for cleaning out the barn. Determinedly not noticing this just perpetuates it. Tamas is not our friend. You want those diamonds noticed? Clean out the bullshit first.

    The world is full of lost tribes covered in bullshit with diamonds hidden inside. It's no one's fault but their own. As for as Eo is concerned, it's awfully interesting that he's had his blog going for four years, and it's only a couple of months after he announced his “seventh stage awakening” that the institution decides to bring him down, without even talking to him or giving him any warning (they claim to have sent him an email, but he never got it, probably because it was to an old unused account). I understand the copyright issues, but it seems like a pretext rather than the cause.

  26. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:35 am | |

    Yogini,

    Speaking of projection, I hope you noticed that I said absolutely nothing about your relationships with guys or having a boyfriend. Obviously it's on your mind, but it wasn't on mine. My reference to “looking for a sweet one” is to a famous Zen joke:

    The students of a Zen Master arrive in the Zendo hall one morning for meditation to find their Master sitting on the dias before them with a large bowl of red hot chile peppers in his lap. As they begin their meditation, the Master begins eating the hot chile peppers one at a time. Soon, his lips become swollen and red from the heat, his forehead breaks out in a sweat, and his whole face puffs up. This goes on for a very long time, and it's obvious that the Master is in agony, but he keeps eating the peppers anyway. The students sitting before him try to maintain their silent zazen posture, but soon they give up and begin begging the Master to stop hurting himself, but he continues on eating. Finally, one of the students yells at him, “Master, why are you doing this to yourself, why don't you just stop?” The Master looks up calmly, holds out a chile pepper, and says, “I'm looking for a sweet one.”

    So it's not just about you and your search for a guy, which I didn't know about, but everyone's search for the “sweet one”, in all its forms. They just don't exist, and I say this as a guy who's been married to a very sweet and saintly wife (for putting up with me) for over 28 years. Point is frustration is inherent to every relationship you will ever have, and accepting that is the only way to have one.

    I'm not trying to win a debate here either, just get down to the truth. Which means pointing out things which I think are false. As are you. We disagree about what is true and false, which in my view is no reason to get pissed at one another and say fuck off, it's just the nature of all relationships. And who knows, maybe there's something in that to consider as you get involved in your next relationship with a guy. We are all sort of assholes in one way or another, you know? What happens when you find that out, is what makes the real difference.

  27. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:40 am | |

    "There is no reason why they 'must' confer benefits. This is an oversimplification to which I doubt any natural selection theorists would agree."

    It's my understanding of genetics that genes which only reduce one's chances for survival and reproductive success naturally get weeded out over time, unless they also confer some survival/reproductive benefits also. I'm sure that's an oversimplification, but still basically true.

    So when one finds a genetic trait that seems harmful, one needs to find out why it would persist, when natural selection would tend to make it vanish from the gene pool. As others have pointed out already, even psychopathic tendencies probably have survival reproductive benefits that keep such genes around. Same with bipolar, and perhaps schizophrenia as well. Are you saying that a geneticist would really disagree there?

  28. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:57 am | |

    Anon108,

    You're right, I commented on your comment without actually watching PR's video. So maybe he has a similar understanding. I'm not sure I want to spend an hour reviewing it just to make an informed comment here. But if we are saying similar things, I'm more puzzled at what you are objecting to. Advaita itself?

    Of course you and I and PR are egos trying to understand ourselves and how we got in this mess. Wouldn't expect you to think any differently. All models and concepts certainly can and do feed the ego. Even your concepts, I'm sure. Mystical experiences are of course just as dangerous, for the same reasons. Whether Atman is Brahman or not hardly matters, until we comprehend and get over our own egoity. Talking about it only does any good if it helps stimulate that impulse. And for some people, it does serve that purpose. For others, it just provides a convenient “answer” that makes them feel better about themselves, which is kind of the opposite of what it's supposed to do. There's no accounting for the ways in which we can fool ourselves, even when we think we are no longer fooling ourselves. Especially then.

  29. nemisisx
    nemisisx January 5, 2012 at 12:24 pm | |

    Broken yogi

    Clearly I'm talking to the wrong man, not that it matters and nor do I hold any animosity to you, I think it was Alan Watts who said that a good judge has a special twinkle in his eye because he knows by a slight twist of fate he could be sitting on the other side of the bench (so to speak)

    When I say diamond in the dirt I don't mean internal dirt, though there is always internal politics and difficulty in any group. I clearly mean what has been laid at the door of Adidam by others. Why that came to pass is complex. I am not blaming even ex-devotees or people such as yourself for this, it is more a "phenomena" that someone else may research at some point.

    What I am saying is can Adidam be cleaned up as a "perception" to at least esoterically transcendentally educated people, to the degree that it came come "out"? So it's an argument that needs to be had in many places. It's in the "dirt", as a perception not a reality, that is the fundamental point I am making, that is only proven by people being able to see past the crap that has been dumped at its door, to what is being offered.

    Again with Eo that was Adidam "bumbling" around, copyright issues nothing more.

  30. Anonymous
    Anonymous January 5, 2012 at 1:51 pm | |

    As someone who with sick fascination has scanned a few Adi Da/Frank Jones books, and watched numbers of extremely creepy videos on youtube of him hypnotizing and manipulating the gullible, I'd like to point out that the guy never said anything that wasn't better said in a hundred other places – like, say, from the sources he so widely plagiarized.

    As for his art, much less that of his minions linked to above – gack! Everything Jones ever did, said, or made reeks of narcissism on the cosmic scale he claimed for himself. There is nothing positive there – there are no kernals of edible corn in the enormous pile of shit that is his legacy. Much less diamonds.

    His books are unreadable and senseless, his art third rate pseudo-modern new age greeting card illustration. He worked for Scientology for a year; that was the real model for his schtick. If he'd gotten what he stated he wanted and was destined for, which was the entire world of "slugs" (people as he saw them) bowing at his feet, I wonder how well that would have gone? Especially when even with just a handful he made such a mess.

    I think he is the perfect model, the template upon which the guru model can be most completely deconstructed, analyzed, and dismissed. Add Andrew Cohen, others. And Ken Wilber, who loves both these guys, and all those who see "spiritual practice" as a "method" to "achieve" something, or "evolve."

  31. Unbroken Yogini
    Unbroken Yogini January 5, 2012 at 1:58 pm | |

    @Broken Yogi

    I missed the zen reference and read it differently.

    "frustration is inherent to every relationship you will ever have, and accepting that is the only way to have one."

    You are showing two false premises here.

    i'm well aware of what is inherrent in an LTR, I'm not some blushing school-girl.

    Every relationship is different, every one is a choice, a compromise. Sometimes the fustrations feel worthwhile and sometimes they do not. Some are just not worthwhile.

    Some frustrations arise outbof wishful thinking, some out of self-preservation, some out of knowing what is healthy. Sometimes being single is healthier than being in a relationship and sometimes not.

    You cannot posit anything based on how I choose to interact with some anonymous guy on the internet. Maybe you don't come across a likeable. Maybe what you see as an aversion to frustration is just me choosing who I interact with and ow I interact with them. Maybe that makes you uncomfortable.

    You come accross as a guy who just wants to win an argument. Maybe thats not the sort of guy I enjoy relating to. Get over it.

    In generalising based on these blog posts you seem creating patterns and treating them as inherrent. Not my concern,

  32. Fred
    Fred January 5, 2012 at 2:21 pm | |

    Soft Troll said…
    Sociopathic behaviours 'serve a purpose' for individuals in the present day, Fred.

    DNA fairy tales have their place too.

    Whatever Trollbot

  33. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 3:19 pm | |

    Nemesisx.

    Whether I'm the right guy to talk with about these things depends on what you're looking for. For starters, I'm the guy who went dildo shopping for Da at sex shops in Berkeley and picked up the latest in dildos and blow-up dolls for him. I'm also the guy who spoke to women who had been beaten and raped by Da, and who talked to an inner circle dude who Da had beat and rape one of his wives with him, while she screamed for both of them to stop. I've known the folks involved in the whole “sexual theater” game he played for decades, and I know the pain and misery they were put through, willingly or not. I was there while he implored people to drink heavily to gather up the courage to sign over their life savings so he could buy paperweights and Disney art. How many millions was that? Over five for certain, maybe much higher. I know quite a lot of what went on in those inner circle gatherings, and while some untrue things have been said here and there by critics, I'd say a good 95% of what's alleged not only happened, but was often worse than alleged, and more frequent.

    So the idea that some outsiders have laid anything at Da's doorstep other than what he and his devotees themselves did is pretty delusional. If you are looking for someone to support those delusions, I'm definitely the wrong guy. I would suggest you need to do some research of your own and find out what really went on while Da was alive. See how open Adidam is to such research. And then you can tell me who is responsible for the dirt that one finds at Adidam's door, and all the way through it halls and rooms, and especially that secret inner sanctum.

    The problem with Adidam is not merely one of perception. It's the problem of what Adi Da and his devotees actually did all these years. You want people in esoteric spiritual circles to respect Adidam, you are going to have to really come clean with all that. In my honest opinion, it's basically a hopeless task. Fronting a few nice artistic types like Nara is simply not going to cover over the rest of it. People in esoteric spiritual circles these days are simply not that naďve anymore. That's why Adidam can't make much headway, and all these attempts to clean up the “perception” of Adidam simply fall flat.

    Adidam can't “come out” while also being in denial of the dirty realities it is trying to sweep under the rug at the same time. Pretending that it's all someone else's fault, that Adidam is some innocent victim of mistaken identity or gossipy mean girls is just not going to fly. As long as you and other devotees take this absurd position that Adidam is not responsible for its bad reputation out there, it's never going to change. Ever. The first step in any twelve step program is taking responsibility for oneself. Unfortunately, Da could never do that himself, and he's pretty much institutionalized that denial such that no one else can either. So Adidam is basically stuck at square one.

    One thing to remember is that your critics are not your enemies. Nor is ordinary reality your enemy. It's narcissists who care about how they are perceived. Get over that, and deal with the reality of what Adidam has actually been, for better and worse. Yes, some diamonds, but also a lot of self-generated bullshit.

    And yes, we not only could be in opposite positions here, I actually have been. So I do know the territory.

  34. Fred
    Fred January 5, 2012 at 3:31 pm | |

    Thanks for that Broken Yogi.

  35. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 3:38 pm | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  36. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 3:40 pm | |

    Yogini,
    I'm not sure why you think I have so low opinion of you. Projection again? I don't pretend to know you, but the image I have is of some smoking hot smart young zen hipster chick who's broken quite a few hearts in her day. Now that's probably projection on my part, but it's hardly a bad one. It does appear that you have the usual self-esteem issues that make you vulnerable to bad boys like me, which is maybe why you already have such a love-hate attitude towards me. Part of you is pissed at me, and part of you really likes the heat thus generated. Which is why you keep replying rather than blowing me off.

    Honestly, if I were thirty years younger and single, I'd be more than happy to meet in person and hash things out. I'm sure you'd be worth the trouble, whatever came of it. And I'm sure there's a guy out there who's right for you, but maybe not in the way you think.

    I'm reminded of this Tibetan tulku dude his students made a movie about a few years ago. Can't remember his name. Good bloke. Best line in the movie is when one of his western students asked him why he doesn't get married. He answers in deadpan, “I guess I just haven't found the right girl yet.” Then he turns to the camera, and says, “That's probably the best summary of human suffering I could ever make.”

    Anyway, no harm meant. I'm certain you're right that I've been a righteous asshole to you here. Some people find that pleasing, others not so much. The point I'm trying to make is that it's never going to actually be satisfying, so why hold that against us all? Even the right guy won't satisfy you. In fact, the sign that he's right for you may be that he's not satisfying and drives you crazy. My wife certainly does. That's when you know you have someone you can grow with, rather than expect satisfaction from.

    Good luck in either case, and I really mean that. You seem like a good person who I've just managed to bring out the worst in. Take care.

  37. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz
    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzz January 5, 2012 at 4:07 pm | |

    Err, "someone" (initials are B.Y.) sure has a lot of time on their hands. Too bad.

  38. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm | |

    Sorry to binge here. I do sometimes get carried away.

  39. Anonymous
    Anonymous January 5, 2012 at 6:10 pm | |

    Whatever, I get the last

    word.

  40. gniz
    gniz January 5, 2012 at 6:57 pm | |

    Hey BY,

    I think you'll find this place has a rather high tolerance for blather and self-indulgent ranting. I've been here for years, as has Mysterion, Anon 108, and many other blatherers,

    However, over the years I've also seen that some folks on here are highly intelligent and knowledgeable and maybe you shouldn't be condescending as well as blathering.

    Just my 2 cents.

    BTW I think I know who Unbroken Yogini is and I can say almost certainly that your impressions of this person is just about as far off as is humanly possible, starting with the very, very basic assumptions.

  41. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 7:32 pm | |

    Gniz,

    Okay, so you're saying that yogini is actually a smoke-free, cold, dumb, old Christian square guy?

    My apologies.

  42. gniz
    gniz January 5, 2012 at 7:49 pm | |

    I'm saying that you come off incredibly disrespectful in many of your comments.

  43. gniz
    gniz January 5, 2012 at 7:52 pm | |

    But whatever. Your comments are not bad compared to what a lot of folks have spewed here from time to time, myself included.

  44. nemisisx
    nemisisx January 5, 2012 at 9:27 pm | |

    Broken Yogi

    Dildo'd and sex toys no problem what's the big deal? "rape and beating" that's the clincher, no one gets passed that. I personally have no interest in Adi Da's sex life, but to mention rape and violence that's pretty much the end of any grand entrance or acceptance into anything other than the extremes of "strange religious practice" It does not matter one bit if it's true, partly true, or novelized, it's in the saying of it, that the damage is done.

    It makes no difference what Adi Da or Adidam has to offer because it can't be credibly and openly enjoyed, it's tarnished already for most people, passed that point. A few would and will get passed this conundrum but very few.

    So the point is made, on one hand I know first hand what Adidam has to offer : an absolutely brilliant, enlightening, liberating and enlivening way of life but this will mostly remain invisible and utterly implausible even though it is factually the case and many over the years have said and written to this effect.

  45. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:41 pm | |

    Nemisisx,

    So you're saying you don't actually care if Adi Da raped and beat women, you only care that it hurts his reputation?

    Of course it matters that it's true. I was at one time Da's strongest defender against these kinds of charges on the internet. Then I looked into these things myself to find out if they were true, and guess what, they are. I know it doesn't jive with your image of Da, but that's your problem with the facts, not with me or others talking about these facts.

    The problems with Da's spiritual credibility begins and ends with Da himself and his own devotees – including myself when I was one. From 1973 on with G&G; he's basically made himself a disreputable figure who most people think is a charaltan. I could list the foolishness all night long, and while I'm sure none of it would change your mind, it's completely poisoned his spiritual work and reputation.

    So, If you want to change that, and prove to the world that your claims about him have merit, it's going to really require something extraordinary and overwhelmingly convincing of the spiritual merit of all that trash. I hope you guys can pull it off, I really do, but it sure doesn't look that way. It sure won't happen by being in denial of the kind of teacher Da actually was, what he actually did, and pretending he was as pure as driven snow.

    What you claim is true will of course remain invisible so long as it's actually invisible. Bring something worthwhile into the world, and it will be valued. But you haven't done that, and neither has anyone else in Adidam done that, including Da himself. Surprise us all.

  46. Broken Yogi
    Broken Yogi January 5, 2012 at 11:51 pm | |

    Gniz,

    I'm not really sure what you are pointing at. Manny comes here making obnoxious and false claims about mental illness, accusing me of being utterly and absolutely wrong. So I give up a link to a scientific website that completely destroys his argument that mental illness doesn't cause detectable brain damage, and what happens? The guy simply disappears, I suppose utterly embarrassed to have made such a fool of himself. And you're saying that's my fault, that I was "disrespectful" towards the guy? What, by pointing to the facts that undermine what he claimed with absolute certainty?

    Guess what, the facts don't respect our precious ideas about the way things ought to be. Look at Nemesisx. She has these wonderful ideas about Adi Da, and all I have are the facts that show no respect for those ideas. I guess that's "disrespectful" also.

    So yes, I could be a bit more tactful, but I'm not going around insulting people here, I'm just pointing to the basics facts, like dukkha, that show no respect for our delusions. You think dukkha cares what our ideals are and shows them any respect?

    So yeah, I'm the asshole here. Kind of funny, really. I just don't quite see what that's got to do with anything that actually matters.

  47. Anonymous
    Anonymous January 6, 2012 at 4:16 am | |

    Hmmmnnn. It's not the assholiness per se.

    Its the verbosity, I'd say.
    Now, let me have the last…

  48. gniz
    gniz January 6, 2012 at 5:58 am | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  49. gniz
    gniz January 6, 2012 at 6:08 am | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  50. gniz
    gniz January 6, 2012 at 6:14 am | |

    This comment has been removed by the author.

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