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November 17, 2015


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I used to think there was something wrong with me when I found that sitting in a crowded Zen center on a cushion facing a wall or listening to a Tibetan monk deal for the umpteenth time with the mundane concerns of a depressed sangha, did not lead to any kind of insight into Mind. In fact the only times I have had profound insights were: (a) sitting alone on a cliff overlooking the Mediterranean or hiking up to a temple in Japan with hardly anyone around; (b) reading the Lankavatara Sutra and the yoga sutras of Patanjali; (c) listening to someone who "got it" explain the Lankavatara; (d) sitting alone by myself looking into my own awareness.

By the way, in all the stories I know of people who became enlightened, the moment of awakening did not come gradually as they were sitting on a cushion for years and years. The moment of awakening happened instantaneously -- while they were listening to a teaching, or doing something else like hauling a bucket of water out of a well. In fact, it's like what happened to you: you were listening to a Japanese Zen monk one day and bam! The challenge after that is to remain awake and not get drawn into the dramas of the ordinary mind.

I agree with your POV. The fact that Shakti-empowered Heart master Adi Da Samraj couldn't produce a single Enlightened disciple made it clear to me that the need for a Sat Guru is overrated.

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