1. FROM A SITE VISITOR: Greetings. Are you an independent or do you have an established lineage, please? Love, Deepa.
2. FROM A SITE VISITOR: All of what I’ve read on your site sounds good and I thought I was getting it—really feeling more peaceful—but then I got an ass-chewing at work and had a panic attack that is still going on right now hours later. The answer? David
F.: Hello Deepa and David. As for lineage, Deepa, the answer to your query is “yes” and “yes.” (1) Yes, ‘I’ am an independent and (2) Yes, ‘I’ also have a lineage. After all of the initial investigation into Advaita, the veils of mind and personality began to be lifted by the words spoken by that consciousness pointed to as Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj, especially the words spoken during his last years (thus, there is the Navnath sampradAya lineage). Yet the full understanding did not come via those words alone.
Though Maharaj spoke of “stages” that had to be transitioned, nowhere were they delineated. The understanding of the stages and of exactly what had to occur for Full Realization came via the content of a vision (thus, independent). Of course, all of the preparation and all of the studying of those words played an integral part in bringing about the full understanding. The vision came when the consciousness settled into the Theta state, and it was the vision that revealed the entire, direct “path” (step-by-step) and the exact order in which the direct path had to be followed if Realization was to happen.
That said, there is no talk of any lineage either during satsanga or on this site. Why? There was no “maharaj” any more than there is a “floyd.” Lineage and traditions are meaningless to the re-purified consciousness and are too often the stuff of ego…just another way to label and classify and separate: “My spirituality is better than your spirituality since my lineage goes back farther than yours” or “My guru has greater respect worldwide than your guru, so what I have is better than what you have.” All relativistic, egotistical nonsense (and even if those ideas are not stated, they are often believed).
The only pointer about lineage that is worth repeating came from Maharaj when he said that lineage is like a river in that “it flows into the ocean of reality and whoever enters it is carried along.” So that teaching, not the lineage, is the pointer…a pointer that can now be applied to David’s query.
David, were you to flow along the River to Reality, to pass its delta, and finally to flow into that ocean of Reality, then the land-bound, time-bound personas among the masses who are capable of handing out an “ass-chewing,” as you called it, would not be capable of inspiring panic attacks.
First, note that the false “you” that “had a panic attack that is still going on” was not You. It was “The Employee” who suddenly feared losing a job. Realized, employment can happen without such attachment. Contrary to the “forest dweller” approach, there is no requirement that you quit a job and isolate in order to Realize or in order to be free of panic attack. (Of course a period in solitude and in contemplation after spending some time with a teacher is usually required.)
Nor do the Advaita Teachings suggest that if you were to Realize you would never again have to deal with “The Rant-er.” What the teachings do make clear is that at the first of the two witnessing stages (subject-object…the witness and the witnessed) the rant can be witnessed without being at one with the rant or “The Rant-er.” At the second stage of witnessing (Pure Witnessing), you will see that there is no subject-object, that there is no “you” getting your ass chewed, that there is no separate “Ass Chewer,” and that there is not even an ass-chewing. It can be seen that there is one quantity of warped consciousness assuming the role of “The Super Boss” and that there is another quantity of warped consciousness assuming the role of “The Threatened Employee.” Both are mirages. Can a mirage harm a mirage? Of course not. Can a mirage be harmed by a mirage? Of course not.
If you had truly “gotten it” earlier, the clarified consciousness would have seen clearly that all of that was, by definition, time-bound silliness; therefore, it would also have been seen that such nonsense will, by definition, pass. Only that which is not time-bound—You—shall be exempt from passing. Were you to have been Realized, that fact would have been obvious. Realizing that, wherefore any fear or panic regarding a childish rant? The relative peace being sought by “david” could have happened if he had sat back, relaxed, merely witnessed the rant, (to ignore a rant inspires continuation of the rant), realized that all of that would pass, known that employment could continue, or known that one role of “The Employee” could be exchanged for another role of “The Employee.”
Next, consider all of that from the level of Reality and understand that there is neither peace nor lack of peace; neither bondage nor freedom; neither enjoyer of happiness nor one to bemoan unhappiness. Yet even after reading all of that—and not yet having Realized fully—you will still want some strategy to apply to avoid such panic attacks in the future, won’t you?
One short-term strategy, pre-Full Realization, involves merely witnessing both the one playing his role of “The Rant-er” as well as witnessing the rant without becoming at one with either. There should be no detectable difference in witnessing the fictional "Rant-er,” in witnessing a fictional drama on television, or in relaxing while floating along a river such as that one referenced by Maharaj.
When fear-generating thoughts arise, even as the rant is in progress, give it no heed and ask instead, “WHO (which persona) is feeling this fear that is seemingly being felt by ‘me’ right now?” The answer will come: “The Threatened Employee.” Then ask, “Is he even real?” “The answer will come: “No. If this job ends, another one can begin.” Please enter the silence of contemplation.
WORKING ON LEARNING TO QUESTION IT ALL AND BEING FREE OF THE FALSE (BUT HONORED) CONCEPTS AND BELIEFS OF YOUR CULTURE?
WORKING ON BEING FREE OF RELIGIOUS PROGRAMMING AND DOGMA?
WORKING ON BEING FREE OF BODY AND MIND IDENTIFICATION?
WORKING ON BEING FREE OF MIND AND PERSONALITY IDENTIFICATION?
WORKING ON “THE FINAL PIECE” AND PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER?
WORKING ON ISSUES ARISING IN RELATIONSHIPS WITH THE NON-REALIZED AND ON FINDING SOLUTIONS TO RELATIONSHIP PROBLEMS?
INTERESTED IN A NOVEL STARRING A REALIZED ADVENTURER?
INTERESTED IN A NOVEL WITH A CHARACTER WHO EVOLVES FROM A LIFE OF MISERY TO THE PEACE OF REALIZATION?
Read: The Twice-Stolen Necklace Murders (see www.floydhenderson.com for synopsis)
Order from Amazon
INTERESTED IN RESTORING FINANCIAL SANITY AND USING A ZEN APPROACH TO HANDLING FINANCES BY USE OF A METHOD THAT HAS A PROVEN RECORD?