“So the spiritual path is really beginning to discriminate, to sort out what’s geeta and what’s not geeta. What’s real and what’s not real. How you feel, what your mood is, what your belief is, what the fear says, the story it creates, the rules it creates. The whole paradigm of egoing is in error.”
I wanted to talk something about why you don’t know you’re divine. It’s come up a couple of times. Some of you are absolutely convinced you’re not divine. That this nasty, squawking, miserable, complaining selfish, depressed, resentful, rebellious, angry ego…that’s who you truly think you are, right? Full of judgments and opinions and comparison or competition, if you’re up or you’re down compared to everybody else. You’re the victim, you’re the victimizer, whether you know it or not.
That’s ego dance.
So if I told you you’re divine, you would say, “That’s Sat Shree”, right? “Something is wrong with him otherwise he would see the truth of how small, miserable and petty I am.” The thing is what you are is so unexplainable that it can’t know itself. The Sat, the truth of you, can’t know itself. The only way it could know itself, is if it were something else. There has to be something other than that indescribable thing to know itself, right? That’s what we’ve been talking about all along, right? And then all of this negative ego story and these ups and downs and these fears and these anxieties and the things you have to do and the things you have to avoid and things that can happen to you and things you don’t want to address and all the other dramas and reactions and fears, that’s what seems to be real.
And so when somebody says no, you’re not that, it’s almost a useless conversation. What good is this going to do me? Now if I went around and told you, you’re the delight of my life, you’re the most remarkable being I’ve ever seen…you’re supreme…I love you and will put roses at your feet…let me bow, let me wash your feet…please, please, please let me wash your feet, you’d be frightened, embarrassed and run out of the room. And even if you believed it, your ego would take it over and say, “Oh I’m special. I’m the one because Sat Shree said so.” And go running off in that particular distortion.
So you can see how my hands are tied here. That is until you get enough sense of yourself, that you can begin to get glimmers into the nature of your reality.
Making the Ego Unreal
One of the reasons I brought this up because what is happening to you during the silent portion of a retreat—what is actually going on—was such a powerful transmission coming into the room…that there’s no doubt you are all divine beings. There’s a lot of collaboration in the room. That which collaborates is the divinity in you. That is what is here in the room when this happens.
For some of you, this divinity is what is recognizing your ego, your thoughts, your actions…being able to see it, watch it. Of course, you probably didn’t think about it until I asked you. Because the fact is this is pretty much how ego keeps you obscured. You can’t see it yet because you don’t have a reference point. All you’re used to is the ego’s negative, it doesn’t let you see the positive.
But I tell you that the ego in you is primarily (not always) the negative conversation. The complaint, the dissatisfaction, the “I’m not good enough”, or “it’s not good enough” or “this isn’t it.” It’s the endless dissatisfaction, the despair and misery, the anxiety that is the undercurrent of egoic identity. All of this is false. It’s just not real. None of it is truth. The ego is untruth!
Now you can take that as a personal insult or you can take that as a sign of hope. It is not a problem that you have negative thoughts. It’s not a problem that you have negative ego feelings. It’s not a problem that your body feels like crap. It’s not a problem that you don’t sleep at night. It’s not a problem that you’re suffering from anxiety or depression. These are not problems. They’re just things happening. It is the ego in you that makes them into a problem.
How do we not get sucked into our negative ego? One way is to keep it so engaged that it doesn’t have time to feed the negative conversation. It has to move beyond the negative conversation, instead of dwelling in it. Instead of enveloping yourself in it and taking medications for it and writing letters to people about how it is. Instead of making the ego real, we need to make it unreal.
So your ego, your story, your personal feeling, your personal mood, your personal fears and victimization is not personal. Every ego has the same story, “I’m powerless, I’m small, I’m stupid.” Or the compensating story, one of exaggerated importance, exaggerated power and exaggerated significance. It can come up, like arrogance or denial, right? Not even knowing it’s there. You are thinking you know but you don’t. That’s the same as denial. It’s going on, but you’re not paying attention to it. You’re watching TV or watching a movie or scanning for your emails or distracting yourself so all this is hidden from you.
If you are busy, if you are engaged, there’s no time for your ego. This is one way of not letting ego overtake you. If I hired a bunch of insurgents, snuck them in across the border and I had them attack this building with real bullets, what you are feeling is not relevant. And actually, at that moment, you would be in pure terror. In this situation this is what truth feels like to the ego, pure terror. If it doesn’t have control, if things become chaotic the ego believes it would cease to exist. That’s what the ego does. Because it does not in fact exist. Only ‘you’ exists. This is what truth is. Truth identified with ego is saying “I’m gonna to die…I’m gonna cease to exist. Even if the ego was killed you would still be there. Truth never dies. Ego is not truth. It’s a complete distortion of truth.
So how can you move into relationship with knowing the truth of what you are?
Well one sign is that something happens when you’re in the presence of the teacher. Maybe a quietude happens, maybe you feel bliss or energy in your body. Maybe you feel really awake, alive. Any or all of these are indications that you are not ego. You’re beginning to experience the truth of what you are.
See it’s not about study and self-discovery. It’s about self-revelation. It’s a revelation of your true nature. Revelation is how the truth in you learns and knows itself. Ego wants to know so that it can control things. It wants to understand so it can be safe and get what it wants. It wants to understand because it imagines it doesn’t know enough, hasn’t experienced enough, and maybe if it did it would be secure and succeed.
In Chapter 11 of the Bhagavad Gita Arjuna is able to see something in Krishna that he wasn’t able to see before. And the seeing of which, for Arjuna, is so extraordinary, that all he wants to do is see more. He wants to experience it more. He doesn’t know what it is that he is seeing or experiencing but he has left his ego behind. What is collaborating? It is the higher ego that is collaborating. In this moment of revelation the ego in Arjuna is recognizing that whatever he imagined knowledge, fulfillment, happiness or love to be, this was the real experience he was always seeking. This is revelation.
The ego is recognizing its original nature and is being irresistibly drawn to it. And of course in this Chapter 11 of the Bhagavad Gita, Arjuna is still projecting himself onto Krishna. He’s not seeing it as himself. He doesn’t understand that the one who’s experiencing this desire to see more, there’s this energy and there’s this fire that’s occurring in his body that the thing is actually happening to him and he’s seeing projecting it onto Krishna.
So Arjuna is actually beginning to experience his own nature, thinking it’s Krishna. He says:
“Oh Lord, I see the gods and all beings assembled in your body. Lord Brahma is seated on his lotus seat there and also I see the presence of all the heavenly seers and serpents. I see You everywhere with many hands, bellies, faces and eyes. Oh Lord of the universe, I can see neither Your beginning nor the middle nor the end. You are the Imperishable, the supreme object of knowledge. You are the final abode, the defender of eternal law. You are the primeval Being. O Lord, I see you as one, without beginning, middle or end, of infinite power and endowed with numerous arms, the sun and the moon as Your eyes. I also see the blazing fire in Your mouth, burning all this universe in Your radiance.”
Of course this never happened like this, because when you’re in this state you can’t say these words. You’re not organized enough to say these words. You’re just a fire, you’re just an explosion of fire. There is no Krishna, there is no you. You’re just absorbed in your nature, your true nature.
This is truth. This is who you truly are. Arjuna says:
“Seeing Your mouths bearing many tusks glowing like the fires of universal destruction. I lose my balance. Have mercy! Oh God of gods, abode of the universe, have mercy on me”.
This is the ego realizing it can’t keep up with this. It just can’t control this one. It thought it might be able to handle it and now he’s seeing so much that he can barely grasp it. He says:
“As moths enter a blazing fire to their destruction with great speed, so also these creatures swiftly enter your mouth only to be destroyed. Oh Lord, swallowing the worlds on all sides You are licking everything. Your terrible rays blaze forth through the entire universe, filling it with Thy radiance. Tell me who Thou art, so terrible a form! Salutations to Thee, have mercy, be kind to me. I wish to know You, the primal Being. [But I’m sure I’m an idiot for asking that.] I’m unable to comprehend what You are doing”.
And then Arjuna says:
“Having seen that which has never been seen before, I am delighted yet I tremble with fear. Oh Lord show me that form in which you have originally appeared before me. Have mercy on me. Be gracious.”
Krishna takes credit for the whole thing. He says, “Oh yeah, I am the great one and you, Arjuna are finally seeing my true nature.” No, no, no, no, no. This never happened that way. It was Arjuna who saw this. It was Arjuna who created this entire situation. And Arjuna is finally getting the reality of who he is.
Discussion of Geeta
If you’re blessed enough to have a guru in your life, the thing is to stay with the guru. It’s really the shortcut. You just stay in the process. Recognizing that the part of you that is kicking and screaming and resisting and opposing and rebelling and denying and finding explanations and justifications to dismiss the person in which the force is coming through is just the ego and it’s not geeta. Ego has a bad day. It’s not geeta to have a bad day. You have a good day. It’s not geeta. You had a dull day. It’s not geeta that you had a dull day. It didn’t work. It’s not geeta that it didn’t work. It worked. It’s not geeta that it worked. It hurts. It’s not geeta that it hurts. It feels good. It’s not geeta that it feels good. Whatever you can think, feel, sense…is not geeta! Only that unnameable, indescribable quality that you get a little piece of. Be it a flame, be it a sense of love, be it peace and silence. Then you hang onto those pieces of it…because that’s all your ego is letting you have of that at this moment. And in peace and in love and in silence…the ego sort of goes quiet because the thing that keeps the ego agitated is something other than that.
So it takes time because ego’s a habit. It’s not just our habit. It’s a habit that came with the body. You know…200 million years old. It’s the habit of our culture. It’s the habit of our personal life, which by the way is ungeeta. What’s your good at, what you’re not good at, it’s not geeta. That you’re a failure. It’s not geeta. That you’re a success. It’s not geeta. That you did it right, it’s not geeta. That you did it wrong, it’s not geeta. That you’re mean and nasty. If you really get down to the secret you…it’s this awful, mean, nasty, destructive thing. It’s not geeta. It’s not relevant. It has no significance.
You’re perfect, complete, whole, finished, done. Even with an ego. It’s a perfectly perfect ego doing what ego’s do best. It’s not personal. It’s not geeta. Egos do what egos do. You’re blessed with the one you’ve got. It’s not about “I’m not good enough” or “they don’t deserve me.” These are both ungeeta. The world’s an awful place. It’s ungeeta. The world’s a wonderful place. It’s ungeeta. All these evaluations, all these judgments, all these standards, all these rules, all these beliefs, all these stories about yourself and everybody else. These are all ungeeta.
But it takes time. I understand. But to be reminded. Because the ego thinks it’s geeta. It’s absolutely convinced that it’s feeling is geeta and if you tell the ego it’s feeling is not geeta, it’s insulted! How dare you tell me my feeling is ungeeta! Who do you think you are? That’s what ego wants to do if it had a voice, full voice. If it wasn’t so suppressed and locked up into the body so it could survive. It would say what was there.
So I absolutely know you are all divine. It’s obvious to me. You can do no wrong. The absolutely true part of you is absolutely perfect. And how you are, just as you are, delights me when I’m in this state. When I’m in my ego, well maybe or maybe not. Less so than your ego more than likely. And what is this? Well, it gives me the ability to be with your ego. Where you can’t even be with your ego. You can’t stand your ego. Most parts of your ego. But I can be with your ego because I know it’s not geeta. It’s not who you are! It’s just an error of identification. It’s just an error on your part.
So what is it doing? It gives me, what appears to be, infinite patience or tolerance or acceptance or endurance. But it’s not that. There’s nothing in me that would question it because the ego is not the geeta part of you. Your ego is something for you to find out how ungeeta it is. And of course, that always makes me happy. When you get it about who you truly are and your ego disappears.
Maybe at the moment, where there is this spaciousness for other people to be or maybe it’s a moment of just gratitude or a recognition of the miracle that you are and that life is. It may be just these glimmers that give you an insight into the opportunity of the human life. And the sense of purpose or meaning that arises from that. Entering into the possibility of life. And it gives you the strength and willingness to go through your apparent ordeal which is ungeeta.
You spent 10 years in Auschwitz? So what? And some of your lives are like that. It’s been 40 years or 60 years in Auschwitz. And it’s all for nothing except when it ends. And then it’s very clearly for nothing. But it was the for nothing you had to go through. Because what you became was that thing you can’t make into a something. So it’s always a “no thing.” So it’s always nothing.
Some of you were born awake. And you entered into the body and you didn’t know…you forgot who you were and you were overtaken by the ego and paradigm that lives in the body. The source of it is separateness. The source of it is “I can be hurt.” So happening doesn’t happen until you have a body. So the moment you take a body, you’re thrown into the whole paradigm that allows ego. So you’re in innocence. The reality of who you are, you lose because there’s nothing in you that can know in that way. There’s not enough separateness for you to know your own nature. All you know is everything else. And it’s usually pretty horrific. As a matter of fact, the brighter you are when you’re born, the more zombies want to eat you. The brand new innocent child wants to be absorbed by the egos around it. It eats it. It abuses it. It dominates it. It tries to get it to heal. The zombies are trying to get healed. It’s trying to come alive by absorbing the brightness that comes when a being comes into the life with enough awareness. And inevitably, it indoctrinates even more the particular brightness. And in some ways it takes on greater darkness than other beings that aren’t as bright.
So that’s why people who come to me often have a lot of damage. Because they not only have what a normal human being would have, but a part of them has been healing the world unwittingly and they are not ready for it. So they take on a particular burden that dimmer souls don’t have to take on. So they’re full of anxiety, they’re full of fear; they’re full of reaction, they’re full of aggressive/defensive patterns, they’re full of what’s wrong with me. There’s not a place to stand enough to say, “what’s wrong with them.” Or if there is, it only comes through now and then. My daughter Sonia, she was blessed with that. She knew right off the bat that, “something’s wrong with them.” It wasn’t always, “what’s wrong with me”. It was just “something’s wrong with them.”
Adyashanti shared what this was when he was six or seven, he’d be watching his parents. And he recognized, “Oh I see. They’re just crazy.” He didn’t think he was crazy. Or something was wrong with him. He just thought that they were crazy. They were believing their thoughts or they would make something up and then fight for that or they would pick to choose to make something geeta that wasn’t geeta and kept stressing how geeta it was.
But for the most part, you end up not even knowing yourself as a happy ego. So I recognize this and I can see the people who have had trauma and I can see the bright souls and they all carry with them, in some ways, exaggerated egoic structures. A greater sense of fear, a greater sense of reactivity, a greater need to defend themselves or protect themselves…a more vigorous, intense quality to their nature because they’re on the edge of their non-existence. They’re on the edge of some other dimmer egos.
So ego actually gains a particular power that has a greater power than one who’s less aware. And that power expresses itself by fear and repulsion. Anxiety. And the thing that’s remarkable, it’s actually ungeeta. The thing that’s remarkable is all this story and all this drama and this horrific event that happened to you, this torturing and putting the boxes that you couldn’t fit in, deprived of the very nurturance that would allow you to live, the aliveness, the joy, the bliss of life. Where you’re just a tattered being. It’s all ungeeta. It’s not geeta. Once you find what’s geeta, once you start experiencing what’s geeta, that is all that counts. When you stop that part of you that’s not geeta and start acting as if life was heaven, as if life was your playground, as if life was the arena in which for you to dance and to play, to experience and to enjoy. Then you have the correct prospective and then of course someone is delighted with you because you’re delighted with you. Of course people love you because you love everybody. Of course you forgive everyone because there’s nothing geeta that needs forgiving.
It’s not significant, it’s not geeta. The truth is such a simple thing, when you finally get it. It’s the simplest thing there ever was. You already have it. It’s actually what is you. It can’t be lost. You can’t destroy it if you tried to. It’s the source of all your love, all your joy, all your lightness, all the revelations, every moment in your life that’s cherished and geeta. That moment, the quality of consciousness for every thing that ever happened to you that was alive and present and real and truthful and in presence, joy with what was arising. You were there. That was you.
So the spiritual path is really beginning to discriminate, to sort out what’s geeta and what’s not geeta. What’s real and what’s not real. How you feel, what your mood is, what your belief is, what the fear says, the story it creates, the rules it creates. The whole paradigm of egoing is in error. And how can you find out it’s in error? By taking actions contrary to what the ego’s telling you to do. When you take an action that’s aligned with what is geeta, it validates what’s geeta in you. And that part of you that is the geeta thing starts gaining some authority. That if you take action based on what’s ungeeta in you, then you will keep ego in place. That means, if you believe your story, and then you take actions based on what you believe, you will keep yourself in the story and in the belief. If you take actions contrary to the story or the belief, do the absolute opposite, you’ll recover what’s geeta in the process.
So it’s this step-by-step to the capacity of each of us. Not all of us are able to not walk in front of the speeding bus. You have to get to that place, step-by-step. When you’re ready and you’re ready to take the step in front of the bus, it will never hit you, it will never harm you. There will be no bus. No you. So you do it step-by-step. Your ego’s telling you a story what you can and can’t do every moment of the day.
So have some necessity, have some requirement, have something outside of the egoic story and do that. And each day, you do it a little further and a little further and a little further and in the process you regain the natural joy of living and being. You discover more and more what’s not geeta in you in the process.
And the advantage is, every morning, every night you’ll be constantly reminded of what’s geeta to you when you sit in mediation and participate in the programs. You can put yourself into the situation that what is truly geeta will keep reminding you, so that what’s ungeeta in you will become more and more apparent and your capacity to take action contrary to what’s ungeeta in you grows. But it will only grow proportionally to your ability to take action.
So if you have things you’re hanging onto: physical, emotional, mental things you’re hanging onto, start giving them away. Start living life without them. Get rid of them. Move out of your house; get a tent, sell your car, take the bus, hitchhike. Whatever it is, you take the action and get rid of all the things you said that “I cannot live without them.” One step at a time. Give the universe a chance to show you the truth.