My Avatarically Self-Revealed Divine Word Of Heart-Instruction Is Founded On Two Basic (and Complementary) Teaching-Arguments. The First Is My Teaching-Argument Relative To "Radical" Understanding (or Most Direct - and, Most Ultimately, Inherent, and Inherently Most Perfect-Transcending Of the self-Contraction).
The Second Is My Teaching-Argument Relative To Divine ignorance (or Inherent, and Inherently Most Perfect, Divine Self-Realization).
You Must Hear the Teaching Argument
a talk by Heart-Master Da Love-Ananda October 18, 1981
HEART-MASTER DA: I started Communicating this Wisdom-Teaching, rather bright-eyed, more than a decade ago already, and I am still Struggling with the same lack of response in people that I encountered when I began. Nobody is really interested. I have not really seen any response to my Work. I have seen the usual, gleeful, sittingaround-at-a-lecture attitude with which people respond to movies and TV. The Teaching Argument is just a commonplace. To enter into a higher frame of existence is just not very important to people. They really do not care to do it, particularly if it requires great effort, great energy, great attention, great intelligence, great will. Anything great to be Realized requires all of those things, but people are used to being sold everything, as if they can just have it at a cost they can comfortably afford.
Like everyone else, you are adapted to the psychology of the consumer. If something exists to be desired, you can have it just by coming into contact with it, or by going to a store, by picking up a book, and by going someplace for a weekend. Everything is supposed to be instantly consumable. The message is that what is between you and a mouthwash is the distance between here and the store. You only need to plunk your money down. Everything is like a sex-object, conceived solely in terms of its consumability, its desirability. Even the great Realizations of human life have somehow been drawn into the stream of communications that propose such things merely as desirable objects. However, the substance of Spiritual life is not merely a desirable object that you can notice and then desire just because it is there, or that you can acquire simply by coming in touch with it. The conventional consumer's mind says that there is nothing between you and anything you might desire but space, whereas what is really between you and What is Great is much more than space!
The distance between you and What is Great is not only space but time, or mind. It is the distance between where you are now and your ultimate overcoming. God-Realization is not a consumable product. Spiritual Teaching cannot be presented as a consumable object. To become a successful institution or religion business involves making the Teaching somehow consumable, an object you can sell. And if the Teaching is to be an object you can sell, then not only the Instructions but also the Realization must become salable.
People are not interested in coming to your church if Enlightenment is not what they get by coming there. If they do come to your church, and you tell them all the things they must do in order to become Enlightened, they go to sleep. People simply do not have any tolerance for the Way whereby the Great Things are Realized. They reject the whole process. It is too much. They think it is evil. They cannot desire the Way.
If you cannot make a religious or Spiritual offering in its fullness available like a consumable object, you cannot generate the growth that seems desirable. Religious institutions grow, therefore, by creating religious illusions, consumable religious products, consumable Spiritual products. Religious institutions hype illusion, or ideas, in such a fashion as to make them desirable, make them somehow seem like Enlightenment itself. You would think that just the ideas themselves were the equivalent of ultimate Realization, or ultimate Happiness. All you have to do is consume these things. All you have to do is get kriya initiation, and right then, having gotten that now, you are happy. People flock to organizations to get products that are hyped, thinking that they are getting Happiness, or getting the ultimate Great Thing. But they are not getting true Happiness at all. The religion business exists to make the unattainable seem like a product that can be purchased.
I have been Teaching the Real Thing to people all these years, and I know what happens to people when they are confronted with the realities of Spirituality. Unless they are unusual people, they basically do not respond. They somehow can get attached to the Teacher, or attached to whatever organization may seem to develop around the Teacher, because they are hopeful of something, or because in the context of belonging certain goods come across so consoling that people do not mind being hangers-on.
But we do not have an "Enlightenment-product" to sell here. The Way must be lived. The Way requires disciplines. As soon as we emphasize the disciplines in The Laughing Man Institute and talk about the profound orientation to practice, every student wants to retreat and become a friend. But if we keep The Laughing Man Institute a kind of middle-class religion business, wherein we do not make demands too heavily and we permit people to dramatize their human ordinariness, then we can make that department into a business. People do not mind being consumers of The Laughing Man Institute business we produce here-although even so it is very difficult to develop that business!
One of the reasons it has been so difficult to establish The Laughing Man Institute is that the Wisdom-Teaching is inherently critical of the point of view of religion business. This Wisdom-Teaching just does not have anything to do with anything like religion business. The Wisdom-Teaching is not consumable. The Way is not consumable. The Way is not something some smiling jerk can purchase and tell his friends about. It is too difficult, too profound.
The problem with the people who are involved here is that they have not observed life itself in such a light that they are motivated toward the Great Process. Life still seems to them to be an amusing opportunity. They want to continue with its consolations. They are not really observing life as a whole. They are not really seeing what is before them. The profound nature of existence escapes them. They are involved in a very superficial level of existence, largely oriented toward bodily amusement. For them, life is the proposition of bodily fulfilment. Of course there is mortality and difficulty, and therefore they like to throw a little religion into their heads, just to protect themselves.
This Teaching is not the kind of religion that can serve such a purpose. The kind of religion that can serve that purpose is conventional, exoteric, downtown churchism and all the hype of self-help groups. The ultimate, Transcendental, esoteric Spiritual Process has always been a great matter. Very few have ever been involved in it. Very few even heard about it before the last century. The ordinary run of humanity just is not in touch with it. Thus, it has always been reserved.
Then the Lord said to the monks: "I am released (mukta), 0 monks, from all fetters (pasa), whether divine or human. You too, 0 monks, are released from all fetters, whether divine or human. 0 monks, wander! We will go forward for the benefit of many people, for the happiness of many people, out of compassion for the world, for the good, welfare and happiness of gods and men."
Ria, translator, The Sutra on the Foundation of the Buddhist
Order (Catusparisatsutra), Vol. 1 of the Nisaba Religious
Texts Translation Series (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1973), p.
Yet, because the world has gotten into such a bad state, and because the science of communication has advanced, the secret stream of human evolution and higher Teaching has become more public. As a result, the secret Teaching became part of the domain of business and superficial culture. And that is our double bind: We are involved in a Teaching that is fundamentally only for those who can use it, and at the same time we have an apparent obligation to the world at large that requires a worldly business.
Today all kinds of weak-minded people are making commentaries on great matters, as if they were authorities. The Great Teaching has been made an object of abuse and casual treatment by the general public, who are threatened by its existence. If you want to succeed as a religious institution, you must reduce yourself to a common message. You must present yourself as a congenial, friendly little thing, a little character that does not know too much or own too much, is not free too much, is just a good guy. You must be like everybody else. You must present something that is consumable by all people just as they are. "Jesus loves you just as you are" is the message, you see.
All people want to be just as they are, and they want to enjoy themselves just as they are. Such is the common motivation to be exactly as you are and to enjoy yourself. People basically come around here expecting to find out that they can simply enjoy themselves and not have to change one whit. They merely want to be what they are, the born physical character. They desire all the things that would be fun to do, and they want to know how to do them. The reason they are asking about how to get happy, of course, is that they are frustrated and unhappy and mortal, but they do not want to get too philosophical about all that. They do not want to look at their frustration and unhappiness to the point of becoming something else altogether. Of course, if they come to me, they are told, "You should really examine all of this and be something entirely different." Yet they keep coming back every week, asking, "Are you sure that is the way it is? Are you sure I have to do all this stuff? Are you really serious, or is this just a bit of theatre? Are you just setting us up for a big party? What you are really going to wind up telling us is that we really do not have to do anything but simply enjoy ourselves, right?" Meanwhile, I am busy working myself over, trying to Communicate the Truth to you in such a form that it will make a difference to you.
Now, why should I be worried about that? Why should I be concerned to find some new way of phrasing the Truth that will somehow make the difference for you people here? If you had half a wit, The Knee of Listening would have changed your life! It has been in print since 1972, but you simply do not like the implications of The Knee of Listening. It suggests that you must change, you see. It suggests that you cannot enjoy the consoling religious ideas, You must have a fundamental understanding now, and if you live on the basis of that fundamental understanding, you will change your life. Your whole life will be taken up by disciplines, meditation, and God-Realization, but you do not want it.
What do you want? You want some promise, some graduated path. Why must a Teaching based on the Wisdom that there is no graduated path and that the ultimate Realization is not the goal of human life busy itself creating a graduated path wherein the goal of Realization is constantly sought? Why must a gradual path be created? Because of the nature of the people who come around. Because they are not really available to the Wisdom that is offered to them, they must be given something else to do in the meantime so that perhaps they will gradually be brought around. Not only are people not ready for the esoteric dimension of this process, but they are not even ready for the basic communication.
You simply do not use the radical Wisdom. You insist on being associated with the conventional archetypes. As long as I use archetypal words, you feel you are in the presence of something religious, you feel all right, you will keep struggling along, applying yourself in some very minimal way because you are not truly motivated. You are motivated only if you wake up, and then you have great energy. But since you have not awakened yet, you only want to be surrounded by a few comfortable slogans and archetypes, and you will apply the discipline only to the degree that you are not burdened by guilt.
The trouble with religious and Spiritual institutions all over the world is that people do not practice. In general the institutions do not even regard this reality to be a problem. They become immune to it. They are willing to exist specifically for people who do not practice. Lack of practice has likewise always been a problem here. I have been able to function as someone who communicates, but I have not been able to function as somebody who communicates in the company of people who practice. The institution itself takes on more and more of the quality of non-practice, on the justification that "If we are going to succeed and grow, then we must give up on this idea that people are supposed to practice seriously, if at all"
If all there is is what there was at the beginning - which is me, having Realized the Truth-then that is all there is about this institution that is real. All the rest of it is a worldly machine that has developed around me because of my poor interest in bringing other people into God Realization. But I ask myself, "Why should it be a concern of mine?" Why am I concerned about whether or not people hear me and change their lives? That concern just led me into more and more involvement with people and with the world, an involvement that confines and threatens my own existence and that does not represent a change in other people.
I did not become involved in this Teaching Work in order to create a religion business, not at all. My Teaching Work was a serious impulse, a real impulse, based on what I had observed in everybody since the day I was born. What I had seen in other people seemed to make them worthy of being instructed. Something needed to be found out, and if it could be found out, there would be profound change. It always seemed to me that if I could find it out, then to let other people know about it was something important to do. Such has always been my impulse, but it is an impulse that is always frustrated, even subverted and reinterpreted by the institutional process of communicating the Teaching Argument to people. Something could be profoundly different about everybody's life, but the fact that I am interested in its being profoundly different does not mean that other people are interested in its being profoundly different. Basically people are not interested.
You know that saying in The Knee of Listening, in "The Man of Understanding" section, something like "Nobody understands so he makes himself happy with the idea that you have already understood." There is no way whereby you get to understand. There is nothing I can do to make you understand. The Bodhisattva vow does not really work, not in any ultimate sense. Some sort of Transmission is involved in the awakening of one individual, because the Divine Reality Transmits Itself to the world in one way or another, but such Transmission is required eternally. It must happen again and again and again and again. Nothing one individual can do in one lifetime is going to make the ultimate or absolute difference for mankind as a whole because of the nature of this material bondage that is humanity.
I have had only the best intentions, but this world, and the people who come around to hear the Wisdom-Teaching, and the people who are available to listen to it, are doing something different than I am doing. I lived what everybody else lives in the midst of this Teaching Work in order to be instructive. It became very clear to me in the midst of that submission that everybody is interested in my living what they are living forever. What they liked was the fact that I was living their kind of life, not the fact that I was Teaching in the midst of their life. Everybody was really very disappointed by the fact that I did not want to live that kind of life very long and by the fact that I am not doing it now.
Everybody is wondering where the good times are! People become worried when they see me just as I am, when I am not taking on their qualities, playing life just the way they want to play it. They start getting uptight. If I am just sort of invisible, criticizing things and making demands, people become uninterested. They feel burdened by everything. When all they hear about is the disciplines of Spiritual life, they lose interest.
The survival of the institution should not be dependent on immature people who presume they are already Enlightened beings. Because immature people are what they are, we must have a proper formal structure for their involvement. That is the way it was always done traditionally. If there existed a core of renunciate or esoteric practitioners, they related to the public and to beginners through the kind of very formal temple structure I have described in the past. They did not create folksy, informal association with inappropriate expectations and access to beginners.
It is a nice idea that there be a gathering of mature practitioners, but it is very difficult to manifest, particularly in this wasteland where forces propagandize against the higher possibilities of humanity from all directions. It is basically against the law to become Enlightened. You must violate basic human taboos to enter into the real Process of Spiritual life. There is not enough free space. Everyone is obliged to be the same. How can you possibly create an authentic gathering under such circumstances? It would be a rare case if any single Realized individual came out of that, and it is rare and unusual, but today everybody wants to maintain the egalitarian view of humanity. Everybody imagines that if one guy can do it, everybody must be able to do it in a weekend. It must be as easy as pie.
Adepts almost never appear. Real practitioners are very, very rare. That is the way it has always been, and it is still the way it is. To hear people talk you would think there were thousands of Adepts all over the country. There are not even thousands of real practitioners. There are people famous for their Spirituality who are not even real practitioners. This is an Alice-in-Wonderland world. It is not real. That is why there must be the Great Teaching. That is why the Truth is of such great consequence, because it is hardly understood, and the real implications of Spiritual Wisdom are not grasped.
Even in the optimum circumstance of the traditional setting, it still took years and years to develop a disciple. And there were very few of those. Look at the history of the traditions and consider the people who were associated with Adepts. How many Adepts were, in effect, fathered by other Adepts? How many Adepts produced one or more other Adepts, even in the apparently optimum circumstances of the traditional setting?
All of the Adepts basically act as if, in their sort of bright-eyed fashion, they are going to save the world. What they have Realized obviously has great consequences. If everybody else could Realize it likewise, things certainly would be remarkably different. Thus, the Adepts are always laying the Teaching onto people and suffering and being abused for doing so. What is the history of mankind? It is not the absence of Adepts and Teachings. These have always appeared. It is the non-use of them, the non-response, the abuse, the suppression. Yes, religion is famous, but not as true religion, not as the servant of Truth, not even as the medium of Truth. Religion has become famous because it is not really religion. It is the same thing that existed before the Truth was proclaimed. And it makes the Truth or the atmosphere of Truth into something else entirely, basically a justification for the conventions of worldliness, not Enlightenment.
And yet religious institutions have value in that they keep some sort of stream of Spiritual teaching in the world. What they present is often falsified, manipulated, suppressed, abused, and miscommunicated, but these institutions are the only vehicle apart from the occasional arising of an Adept. This is why it seems important to me to create an institution that functions rightly, but not because I have even the slightest sense that the world could be suddenly changed by hearing the Truth. It has never happened, and it is never going to happen, at least not with humanity as it is. In general, it is not going to happen in the manifest realms, and there is no other place where it could happen.
To communicate the Truth is always difficult because the Truth is about waking up from the presumption you are making on the basis of manifest existence. Even religion and so-called Spiritual endeavor tends to be based on that same presumption. The religion people hold on to, cling to, feel consoled by, is the religion based on that error, that false presumption. The Truth is another matter. The Truth is taught in a religious or Spiritual context, but if it is to be practiced, the error you are making on the basis of manifest appearances must be thoroughly transcended. Such transcendence is Enlightenment. Such transcendence is hearing the Teaching.
Just to begin the Way you must hear the Teaching. You must Awaken. Whole-bodily Enlightenment in the most thorough, full, and high sense involves a Great Process, but Enlightenment is not its goal. Enlightenment is its root. Enlightenment is a fundamental Awakening, a fundamental insight, which you then use moment to moment to create the Way. A practice that is not based on that fundamental insight is not based on Truth.
Therefore, the basic
Teaching this institution should represent is the
understanding of this fundamental error, or the mechanism
associated with manifest existence that makes it into an
illusion, into suffering, un-Happiness, un-Enlightenment,
Godlessness. You cannot merely believe something positive
and develop a true religious or Spiritual life.
Enlightenment is not simply a matter of believing in
conventional God-ideas that motivate you to be better. All
such ideas must be understood. You must enjoy this
Awakening, this insight. You must hear the Teaching