Thursday, March 10, 2016

MAHARAJ: “Lightment” vs. Enlightenment, Part “N”

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Today's Considerations

Maharaj has long been criticized by some for being self-contradictory. Much of their condemnation is based in the fact that he offered level-appropriate pointers to seekers, so of course he would offer advice to a seeker at Step Two on the seven-step “path” which differed from the advice which he offered to a seeker who was malingering at the Third Step. So to the one at the second step, he might advise that seeker to move along to the third spiritual step, whereas to one idling about at the third spiritual step, he would advise that seeker to move beyond what he called "the kindergarten-level of spirituality" and then advance to the next step . . . "The Child Ignorance Stage" or "The Child No-Knowing State.”

And granted, his message did change significantly as his understanding of the true nature of the Ultimate Sickness and the Ultimate Medicine evolved. As noted yesterday, he discontinued the use of a Hindu / non-dual version of the Ultimate Medicine and later discontinued the use of a spiritual / non-dual version of the Ultimate Medicine and began offering non-religious, non-spiritual pointers which addressed the psychological, mind-centered roots of the Sickness.

Was that self-contradiction, or evolution? Ultimately, WHO (what ego-state) cares? The fact is, it is human nature to allow programming and conditioning – such as that received by Maharaj from Siddharameshwar – to influence one’s message if one’s is not speaking solely from the universal, unblocked consciousness.

However, one charge regarding a supposed contradiction by Maharaj is unfounded, namely, the assertion that “he obviously didn’t know what the heck he was talking about, criticizing ‘knowledge accumulation’ (that he called ‘learned ignorance’) one minute and then endorsing ‘child ignorance’ the next.”

Now there is a charge about “someone not know what he’s talking about” that is coming from someone who really does not know what he’s talking about. But granted, the term “Child Ignorance” (long used in the Far East and not coined by Maharaj at all) can lead to confusion or misunderstanding; that is why, here, the term "The Child No-Knowing State” is used to point to the condition which exists during the early period of every child’s existence when there was a potential to enjoy unconditional happiness (which is soon taken away from every child via faulty programming, distorted conditioning, etc.)

Because Maharaj and all other sages who endorsed a return to that state were spot on with that advice, the discussion here, about why that shift would be wise and how that shift can happen, will continue. Again, some excerpts from the book The Relative Results of Returning to "The Child Ignorance Stage" or "The Child No-Knowing State"
will be shared.

In a chapter entitled, The "New and Improved" Ego-States That Are In Place by the Third Step on "The Path," information is offered which explains why Maharaj recommended that seekers who are fixated at the Third Step should move on to at least the Fourth Step and return to "The Child Ignorance Stage" or "The Child No-Knowing State."

The pointers from that book which deal with the fixation that happens at the Third Step (and which usually blocks any further movement along the “path”) include an invitation to reach the understanding which can transition one beyond Third Step role-playing and return one to the Fourth Step and the opportunity to once more enjoy unconditional happiness (or at least contentment and maybe even peace). From that book:

So, if Maharaj's estimates were spot on, [that few will ever Realize Fully] then you too might ask: "If Maharaj was right and almost none who seek to understand ever will, why even try?" Again, completion of even four of the seven steps can make the effort worthwhile, as far as the relative existence is concerned. At the third of seven steps on the "path" to Realization, persons begin shifting away from the roles which they played earlier and which their cultures defined as "bad" ones.

Reaching the third religious or spiritual step (or at least a point where there is a shift in focus from valuing only "things phenomenal" to a focus on "things noumenal") might facilitate the discarding of a host of false identities - even scores, in most cases – which had reinforced self-absorption and which had blocked any concern about "others" except to the extent that those "others" were willing to play the necessary, co-dependent counterpart that is required to sustain any assumed role. Some of the most popular roles among adults can include:

"The Employee," who cannot exist without someone willing to play "The Employer"; "The Husband," who cannot exist unless there is someone willing to play "The Wife," and vice-versa; and "The Super Spouse," who cannot exist for long unless there is the perception that one's mate is also a "Super Spouse."

Some of the "final" ego-states that must be abandoned if one is to move beyond the third step  include a host of supposedly "good" ones (which are still nothing more than roles . . . nothing more than new but false identities which have been assumed to replace old and "bad" but also false identities). Some of the last "good" identities that must be cast aside in order to move to the fourth step include:

"The Devout and Earnest Seeker" or "The Super Religious Person" or "The Spiritual Giant" or “The Super Seeker” or “The Eternal Seeker” or “The Virtuous One” or “The Old-Timer Who Is So Much Better Than Others With Fewer Years of Sobriety” or “The Most Virtuous One”;

or “The One Who Is Free of All Sin” or the one identified as "The Ultimate" or "The Supreme" or "The Sacred Self" or "The Divine One" or "The Newly-Reformed One" or "The Purposeful One" or "The One Who Has Been Reformed for More Years than Others" or "The Righteous One" or "The Really Good One" or "The Knower" or "THAT only" or "Brahman," etc.

How much fun are those types to be around? How about “no fun at all”? Recall the spouse who shared the view that she and her children came to in regards to their husband / father who flaunted the new, spiritual role which he began playing after he reached the third step in a so-called "spiritual program." After he had assumed most of those bogus identities listed above, and many others as well, and after she and the children experienced what it was like living with the a "new and supposedly improved version of him," their new sentiment - after seeing both options - was that they could tolerate “the former ass” easier than “the obnoxious saint.”

Once more, Truth can be known but cannot be stated, so to say "I have become better" or "I have become something really 'good'" or "I am now super religious or super spiritual" or "I have found my True Self and it is something Very Special" cannot be true. The very verbalization of the claims should make clear that the claims are false. Once more, such claims differ not at all from the same kind of deception and self-deception which plagues the totally "non-Realized" masses and which triggers use of the same ego-defense mechanisms (such as egotism and arrogance) which are employed by anyone assuming any ego-state as an identity.

When "Spiritual Giants" make contact here to display how much they know, the reply to those types is the same as Maharaj’s reply to those types: "Indeed, this speck of consciousness called 'Floyd' is a spiritual pygmy compared to you." 

Again, because Truth can be known but not stated, to claim that "egotism and arrogance and narcissism have been replaced by humility and modesty" is just more evidence of egotism and arrogance and narcissism among those who are proud of their newly-found humility and modesty which had supposedly rendered them "different from" and "better-than" (including "different from the way I was" and "different from others" and "better than the way I was" and "better than others").

Now, phoniness prevails among humanity. The valuing of form over substance and image over authenticity is now the abnormal norm among the masses of the planet. As an example, paths recently crossed with a wife / husband duo who displayed near-equal levels of malignant narcissism (a.k.a., “sociopathy” and “psychopathy”).

The version of their life which those two put on exhibition has made them the envy of their siblings and of his co-workers and of their neighbors and of the visitors to her Facebook page (where an ever-growing photographic chronicle of the doings of “the most perfect family ever” is added to on a daily basis, provided supposedly visual proof of the quality of their idyllic life which is, in fact, nothing more than a fictionalized drama which is being acted out on the stage of "The Theater of Their Lie").

What is not seen in public or in their pictures are their true actions off-stage, including their behind-the-scene raging and fighting and knocking holes in sheetrock and tearing down curtains; what is not on display in her Facebook pics is their financial insanity and the hundreds of thousands of dollars in accumulated debt; a saving account that would not exist if they had not stolen thousands of dollars from credit card companies and from a parent along the way; and what they really look like when their masks are not on.

But those who can witness clearly, who do not buy into the couple’s public act and who do not believe for a moment what is being depicted via an extensive social media pictorial record, see clearly the fake humility and modesty that is feigned when praise is heaped upon them for what is perceived to be "their amazing rags-to-riches success story."

Only humans have the ability - and the propensity - to act like magicians and to use smoke and mirrors to show the world an optical illusion while presenting it as reality.

If one makes claims about his or her "former egotism and arrogance and narcissism which have now been replaced with humility and modesty,"  then the question to be asked is, "What happened to neti-neti? You know, to the understanding that there is no 'who' - no 'person' - to be either arrogant or modest? WHO - what assumed persona - is actually claiming to be humble and modest? Do you not see the insanity of bragging about being modest?"

If “the no-person, no-identity composite unity” is understood, then it is also understood that the earth elements forming a temporary plant food body cannot be humble and modest; it is understood that the oxygen circulating through a temporary plant food body cannot be humble and modest; it is understood that the conscious-energy that is temporarily-manifested in a plant food body cannot be humble and modest; and it is understood that there is no such thing as “a great success who should be envied and emulated.”

Understand that and then the answer to one query received is also understood:

Questioner: "In your book From the Absolute to the Nothingness, you state: 'In fact, when a ‘state’ of zero concepts is reached, it is understood that there is no ‘identity’ at all. It is also realized from that ‘state’ that there is nothing deserving any esteem at all, contrary to the tendency among the non-Realized to demand that they be shown ‘the honor they deserve.' If there is 'no identity at all,' then who does the understanding and the realizing?"

The reply: "There is no 'who.' Who-ness is a false concept . . . as much an illusion as a person or persona or as anything deemed to be personal or ‘Personal.’ If ‘Realized,’ the consciousness knows itself, and with ‘Full Realization,’ awareness is aware of itself. But all that aside, the key point is what Maharaj emphasized: 'Realization is merely about being free of learned ignorance.' End of story."

[NOTE: For now, the manifested consciousness knows the "I AM" and the awareness-energy that is presently manifested as conscious-energy can suddenly becomes aware of itself . . . aware of the "I AM THAT." Post-Realization, the unmanifested consciousness will know nothing and will merge into that field of unmanifested energy called "Awareness" which - also - will not be aware of anything. That is why the focus should never be on "later" but should be on being free of ignorance NOW and being restored to sanity NOW and being free of "knowing it all" NOW and enjoying unconditional happiness or contentment NOW.]

Is it becoming clear why completion of even four of the seven steps can make the effort worthwhile? It is after the third step that all identification is cast aside, including what is taken to be the "good" roles as well as the "bad" roles. It is at the third step where it should be understood that "there is no who" and that "who-ness is a false concept" and that any notions about being "a person or a persona or anything personal" are also false.

To return to a state of unconditional happiness, the requirement is that one transition beyond the belief that one has become better, beyond the belief that one has become spiritual, and beyond the belief that one has stopped being something that was "bad" and has now become something that is "good."

By shifting into the Child Ignorance Stage or the Child No-Knowing State, one can once again become as a child to the degree that there are no beliefs and ideas and concepts that are driving thoughts and words and actions. There is no assumption of any persona / personality which always needs someone else to assume the identity of a persona / personality and which needs someone else to play the co-dependent counterpart role that is required for any persona to continue to believe that it is real.

If one reaches that fourth step, then unconditional happiness can once again manifest as a result of once again being free of all that generates conditional happiness and unhappiness, namely: ideas; concepts; beliefs; all of the insane effects of programming, conditioning, domestication, acculturation; learned ignorance; personality-based fears and desires; personality disorders; and personality disorders which can eventually reach neurotic levels of insanity or psychotic levels of full-blown madness.

To review, even if Maharaj's final estimate was accurate - that only one in ten million will ever Realize Fully - then it should nevertheless start becoming clearer by this point in the discussion why even reaching the fourth of seven steps is still worthwhile, relatively speaking.

To be continued.

Please enter into the silence of contemplation.

[NOTE: The four most recent posts follow. You may access all of the posts in this series and in the previous series and several thousand other posts as well by clicking on the links in the "Recent Posts and Archives" section.]

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