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Isvara the Teacher
Benjamin: Hi, James. I have missed communicating with you, so here I am. I hope I’m not causing you any undue work in doing so but I’ll let you and Isvara work that issue out and hope for the best. I really don’t need any guidance in order to direct the doer or realize the self; Isvara seems to still have me by the “short hairs,” as you so eloquently put it. Just thought I’d give you an update in case I was still occasionally a thought in your mind these days. ☺ Of course you can always send me any corrections or advice you want. I love the clarity of your mind and wisdom as a reflection of Isvara’s influence and will.
The videos are a part of my daily life. I watch at least an hour a day or listen to the matching audios. Some days I end up listening to Vedanta a whole day. They keep me grounded in inquiry, which is good because the ego tries to use every life situation to trick my intellect and mind into being it’s a whore dog in an effort to re-establish the self-identity in the subtle body. It’s almost as if it’s realized its time and influence is ending and it’s in its death throes, which I hope is true, but I don’t put any concern towards what’s happening with it… I just witness what transpires as it goes by… because I know I’m on the Vedanta Bus. As time passes and the vasanas and samskaras are neutralized I’m sure the need for the repetition will end but for now I’m staying consistent in the knowledge until such a time that it becomes permanent within the causal body. Besides, I find your satsangs so damn entertaining and enlightening. I feel I have known you all my life. Maybe this is somehow true but regardless, if so or not, you are a comfort nonetheless.
For an example, my step-dad suddenly decided he wants to move to Texas with some woman he’s been speaking to for a while that none of us knew anything about previously and he did so after being gone for a week of “going to see a woman he knew” in Dallas. He came home after this week of “vacation” and announced that we were going to have to sell the house because he was moving.
We had talked at length about the house and had come to an agreement that he would give us ample “heads-up” notification so my wife and I would have time to prepare for such life-changing alterations. Well, I must say that when my vasanas kicked in my immediate reaction was not very nice or appropriate. But the “witness” seems ever-present now, and although my intellect wasn’t available for immediate rational contemplation it had enough sense to inform the “doer” that I used to think I was to get its ass out of the house and away from him before it created unwanted karma.
So after I retreated I put my Vedanta hat back on and relished the completeness of myself, and was blessed with the discernment of that which was not-self until my mind was again calm enough to dharmatically reflect. (Yes, sometimes I create my own words.) ☺ I accepted Isvara’s will and the self came to the forefront and re-instilled the knowledge that none of this changes me and that I know no matter what happens I will still have whatever I really need. And I saw that this whole event was an instruction from Isvara. Then within the matter of about an hour we had to decide to let him sell the house without resistance, or if I could manage to talk with him and remind him of his words and our agreements to let us take over the payments… or just go ahead and start looking for a place to live and move all our stuff “yesterday.”
I approached him the next day and apologized for my hasty exit. I then explained that I didn’t want to act out of old conditioning but to act after I had time to reflect. He appreciated my discipline. He then apologized that he had temporarily forgotten our agreements. He said that if I was sure that I could afford the bills he would allow me to take over the payments on the house. Out of his appreciation he decided to re-will his and my mom’s estate to us directly with the vow to try to pay it off before he passed away. The way his desire destroyed his sense of dharma was witnessed by me in all its glory, and I found it quite startling! It is a huge teaching for me and tested my enlightenment quite nicely. The whole thing will cause us some inconvenience… my wife isn’t crazy about it either… but we have to follow the dharma that Isvara presents and we are willing to, so I know everything will turn out exactly as it’s supposed to. I hope you enjoyed the story. ☺ I’m just fine and I know that I’ll be just fine no matter what appears to be happening around me because I know the knowledge is truth and I have faith in the teaching and I can see the ignorance fading. The worst thing that happens is when my conditioning reacts before the witness can catch it but that is slowly disappearing within awareness as well. I’m becoming good at dealing with the apparent duality of non-duality.
So tell me about what’s up with you and what’s happening if you get a chance. Any new videos or audios would be greatly appreciated or any photos or anything of the sort. I’d still really love to be able to spend some time with you, so hopefully that opportunity will present itself. I feel like your a long-lost relative or friend. I haven’t had the chance to see in years. ☺ I hope everything is good with you guys!
~ Love and gratitude to you, Benjamin
James: Hi, Benjamin. Lovely to hear from you. Seriously, Benjamin, you are the best kind of disciple. You get the knowledge and you hunker down and do the work. Vedanta works, as you can see. I needn’t encourage you, because you are convinced. You are right about keeping on it 24/7 and programming the causal body with the knowledge. You are also right about not worrying about the death of the ego. It stays in one form or another anyway. What counts is that you observed it react to the bad news and you made it respond appropriately. You learned your lesson about desire by observing your dad and how easily a person under its spell conveniently forgets his or her responsibilities. In short, you passed the Vedanta life-test with flying colors! Good for you, Benjamin. I would love to meet you one day. Maybe you can come to Trout Lake. It’s a campout, and the group site runs a few bucks a day, assuming you don’t mind sleeping in a tent. Yes, we have a new video, Panchadasi. It is an advanced text. I did it this winter in India. It is $80. I recommend it.
As for us, we are fine. We have a deposit on two houses in the mountains near Malaga, Spain, and are waiting for the paperwork to be completed. It is a beautiful place where we can write, do art, hold seminars and generally enjoy the beautiful countryside. I’m off on Saturday to do six weeks of teaching in Germany, then back here, then on to the States. Life is grand!