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Isvara Loves Ignorant People
Black Eagle: Ramji, you’re probably getting really busy these days, I’m guessing. I’m here in Wyoming for the annual solstice ceremony, better known as Sundance.
Ramji: I’m always busy as hell, Black Eagle. ShiningWorld keeps me occupied. I’ve always got time for you.
Black Eagle: I can’t help but contemplate why I still attend these ceremonies. More out of a sense of duty and commitment, I guess. It’s good for the kids to be out of the city for the summer, but some part of me can’t help but feel like the ceremony itself and all the time and resources that go into them are pointless. Many have spiritual experiences but, like you say, they don’t have the knowledge to correctly interpret them. But nor do they want the knowledge. They like being dualists!
Ramji: Absolutely. They have no idea that reality is non-dual, except sometimes during their epiphanies. And if they did, they wouldn’t know how to seek it.
Black Eagle: It makes them feel safe in some way to feel small and ignorant.
Ramji: Once, when I was encouraging a very tamasic person to get his shit together, he said, “Well, Jim, it may be shit but its warm and it’s mine.”
Black Eagle: I ask myself, could Isvara have really stuck me in a dharma role that prevents me from really helping people? Just so I can sit and watch them turn in circles?
Ramji: It seems Isvara did, but you can say no to Isvara; it won’t mind. Maybe you ought to figure out why you want to help people, not that there is anything wrong with it, but in the enlightenment business results come slowly. It sounds like you have a do-gooder vasana. No blame, but usually helping only works when one’s help is requested.
Black Eagle: I would rather be at home meditating than dealing with all this, but yet here I am.
Ramji: The “rather be” feeling is a sign that a negative vasana is working out.
Black Eagle: I feel like I’m carrying this big secret and my prescribed role prevents me from revealing the obvious fact of true spirituality without causing a huge ruckus.
I know, I know, “let not the wise unsettle the minds of the ignorant.” What is it inside me that feels the need to shake things up?
Ramji: A desire to be recognized as a good person? A rebel streak? I used to be like that, but one day my guru said, “Do your realize that you are only rebelling against yourself?” That cured me. Isvara loves ignorant people. It manufactures them non-stop. That is why the world is in such turmoil. Yes, we all want it to be different. But it can’t. If someone asks for a bit of help and is willing to listen, respond. Otherwise, let the world be. Take care of your own karma, simplify your life and go fishing.
I don’t want to walk around feeling more knowledgeable than everyone, but it’s seriously like spending time in a kindergarten class all day. Even the most basic knowledge of truth would be laborious to convey.
Ramji: Be grateful the knowledge has liberated you and leave the rest to Isvara. When and if the time is right to enlighten people Isvara will set it up and you and it will work.
Black Eagle: For the first time in my life I feel like walking away from this so-called culture and relieving myself of all its trappings.
Ramji: I walked away when I was twenty-five and never looked back.
Black Eagle: Here I have climbed to the pinnacle, only to realize I was climbing the wrong hill for the wrong reasons.
Ramji: I had a friend who realized the truth and got depressed for two years behind this idea. You are not the doer. You didn’t climb. Isvara “climbed” you. So the wrong reasons were the right reasons because it led you to know the truth. Knowing what you know is good enough. The rest is up to Isvara. Take it easy.
Black Eagle: Of course I can sit quietly and watch on, waiting for some unsuspecting person to get fed up and snap them up into non-duality (so to speak), like a bull frog snatching a fly, but it doesn’t feel like a bold stance in the self as the self.
It feels like a cheap replacement.
Ramji: So you fancy yourself as some sort of spiritual warrior? That’s all a tad dramatic, I’d say. If you want to do battle with other people’s ignorance, you’re into a long hard slog. See how difficult it is to confront your own.
Black Eagle: Of course I could just go out on a limb and boldly state from my newly ascended mountain top, “Hey, assholes!! God is not way over there somewhere.” But… I could likely get shot or worse end up with people trying to put me on a pedestal.
Ramji: Look what shooting off his mouth got for Jesus. Take care of your stuff and leave the rest to Isvara, Black Eagle. When the world needs a savior, it will give you a call.
Black Eagle: In any case, yet another thing Vedanta has relieved me of: the novelty of Native culture. Except to the extent that I uncover gems of non-dual knowledge hidden in the old customs that no one understands anymore, I’m totally bored to tears listening to people pray to an absent dual God for “stuff.”
Ramji: That’s duality for you. ☺ Spiritual materialism is alive and well. It sounds like you’re about ready to stop being an Indian.
Black Eagle: But anyway, I thought I would regale you with my luxury problems yet again. ☺
Ramji: Regale away. I love to hear from you.