Yoga & Tapas: No Surprises Here (A Response to William J. Broad’s NY Times Article).”

Via on Feb 28, 2012

Ekam sat vipra; bahudha vadanti

“Truth is one: wise people speak of it in various ways.”

When I was a young graduate student of Religious Studies, I learned a dirty word: reductionism.

If I were ever to claim an all-encompassing reason to explain religious phenomena—like, for example, we all descended from aliens who the ancients called “gods”—my professor would throw chalk at me. “Reductionist!” he’d yell out with the same fervor as Spanish inquisitors centuries before would scream, “Witch!” I learned very fast how not to make simplistic conclusions lest my cheeks got burned with shame at the stake of those wiser than me.

I wish The New York Times and William Broad would have learned the same lesson. Now as a grown-up religious historian, I can with great authority reduce his article, “Yoga and Sex Scandals: No Surprise Here,” to the slush pile of reductionism. I’m sorry Mr. Broad, but yoga did not originate from a “sex-cult.” Alone, that is.

That’s not to say, yoga didn’t not originate from a medieval sex-cult. But my broader and perhaps overly-educated views on the history of yoga suggest that medieval Hatha Yoga of the Nath lineages was only one of the many streams of influence that have culminated in the great oceanic traditions of yoga that we’ve only recently adopted in the West. (And in my many readings of the Hatha Yoga Pradipika and other texts contemporary to it, I don’t recall coming across passages that advocated the worship of the sacred vulva through repeated sex with it, as Mr. Broad seems to have discovered— an inaccuracy The New York Times fact-checker appears to have missed.)

Yet Mr. Broad’s article does serve an important wake-up call, pointing to an essential need among yogis: We all require a primer of Indian spiritual history. It’s as important as knowing where to place the knife-edge of your pinky toe in warrior pose. Otherwise we’ll all be made to look like fools in the company of our non-yogi friends by the big mouths of public opinion like The New York Times.

We’ll lack the substance to sustain the rightful respect yoga deserves as a recent immigrant to the American spiritual/religious scene. And the great tradition that by some grace of karma we’ve inherited will be soon relegated to the realm of “dangerous fringe cult,” which has become synonymous with “tantra.” Or worse. It will go the way of jazzercise and your kids will dress up as yoga instructors for Halloween—in Lululemon outfits that they’ll dig through your closet to find and that you’d hoped were buried for good along with your Laura Ashley dresses.

But first, an essential prerequisite is in order. We have to eradicate our collective assumption that informs the way we view any religious tradition in the West: There is only one creation myth. There is only one distinct historical origin. There is only one defining text that serves as the highest religious authority. And finally, there is only one version of “God.”

Even if you personally believe in one God, one scripture, and one Church, if you ever hope to really understand Indian spirituality—and not reduce it to something abhorrent because you’re either too lazy to look into all the complexities or too fixed on your own assertions of truth— you have to accept the idea of the one-within-the-many. If that makes you uncomfortable then let me make a helpful suggestion: Accepting another idea of reality isn’t to diminish your own. It’s just a polite way to live on this planet. It helps to eliminate things like wars, prejudice, and injustice.

So my first corrective to Mr. Broad and any of us in the West looking for such a unilateral definitive about the Divine as we encounter in Judaism, Christianity and Islam is to stop looking for it in Indian traditions, especially in yoga. There is no one yoga. There is no one defining text that lays down the parameters of the elusive one tradition. Not even Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras is the ultimate authority on what yoga is.

But if I were held hostage against my will and forced to surrender my views on yoga’s origins for a ransom, I would seek for it in the Vedas, which considerably pre-date Mr. Broad’s medieval point of conception.

Historians date the Vedic period from the 5th century BCE culminating in the classical period at about the 5th century CE. What was in vogue then among elite religious circles was a unique act of fire sacrifice known as yajna.

The performance of offering sacred substances into a ritual fire had its origins in the creation narratives such as found in Rig Veda X.90, The Sacrifice of Purusha, which I’ll paraphrase for you here:

Once there was only one man, a great cosmic man known as Purusha, who contained within himself the entire universe. In order for the worlds to be born, the man had to break himself into many parts. He enlisted the gods, the forces of the universe (also within himself), to construct a great fire (arising from within himself) to immolate himself upon. As he presented his body to the flames, everything that makes up the created world—from the seasons to the animals to the blades of grass—arose from out of his sacrificed limbs. This beautiful universe of glorious living beings emerged from a single body broken into thousands of parts, distributed everywhere, and connected only through the fire that burns through everything.

To this day, we are all part of that living flame.

Yet as time goes on, we lose connection to our own innate and living fire. It happens. Everything wears out eventually, including our original state of unity. So the ancient priest-scientists in the Vedic times divined a way to restore the pristine moment of creation by reenacting the original sacrifice of Purusha. In doing so, the priests re-enlivened the life-bestowing fire at the basis of our collective Being.

As light and heat attracts everything toward it, the Vedic sacrificial fire attracted more of everything that was offered to its flames. More food. More wealth. More abundance in every realm. More happiness. More peace.

In the later part of the Vedic period toward the classical period, yajna developed into an internal bodily sacrifice wherein, as stated in the Garbha Upanishad:

“[T]he body is the sacrificial place, the skull of the head is the fire-pit, the hairs are the holy kusha grass, and the mouth is the antarvedi (the raised platform in sacrifice.)”

The fire of the external Vedic yajna transformed into the fire of conscious restraint or tapas. The same highly attractive flame of the sacrifice burned now from within the human body according to the texts and traditions of the classical period. Supernatural powers or siddhis became the attainment of the accomplished fire-tender in the same way the sacrificial fire attracted abundance to society. And the cultivation of the internal fire as tapas became the supreme yogic technology to achieve unification with the Source (Purusha) as the Vedic priests had intended with yajna.

So yes, Mr. Broad, while some of the practices of modern yoga may stem from the Hatha Yoga traditions of medieval India, tapas, arising from the much earlier Vedic practice of yajna and involving, as B.K.S. Iyengar aptly observed, “purification, self-discipline, and austerity” is a more essential defining feature of yoga than “sex-cult practices.”

Is it the only feature of yoga? No, but it’s a place to start.

Does it account for the philandering yoga rogues out there seducing young women? Perhaps it does. Fire burns. It requires supreme self-discipline and control to keep it from harming yourself and others. That’s why in the Sadhana Pada (chapter dedicated to proper practice) of the Yoga Sutras, Patanjali presents the yogic “retraints”—the yamas and niyamas—after his discussion of tapas to prevent you from getting burned.

And finally, have all the popular yoga teachers truly “devised a sanitized discipline that played down the old eroticism for a new emphasis on health and fitness?” If I had a piece of chalk, Mr. Broad, I’d throw it at you. Reductionist!

~

Editor: Kate Bartolotta.

 

About Dr. Katy Poole

Katy Poole, Ph.D. helps yogis who have a thirst for deeper experiences of samadhi discover it in Sanskrit, which is not a dead classical language that only geeky academics who hang out at Berkeley or Harvard can decipher. Rather, Sanskrit is a vibrational technology with which to enter higher states of consciousness. It's the gateway drug that causes addiction to effortless meditation. And it aligns your biorhythms with the pulse of nature at its source. Dr. Poole offers a free online introduction to Sanskrit video course that you can access at her website: http://www.SanskritforYoga.com

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40 Responses to “Yoga & Tapas: No Surprises Here (A Response to William J. Broad’s NY Times Article).””

  1. Krista O. says:

    Thank you for this response.

  2. Vidura Barrios says:

    Bravo Dr. Katy. Your very intelligent and positive response was a breath of fresh air. I wrote the Times directly and share your article with them. The author of the article was obviously simply seeking for attention. (He was peddling his own book on yoga, which by the way is pretty disgraceful)

  3. Rahi says:

    Beautiful piece, Katy…as a yoga teacher of the 70s, trained in the Krishnamacharya lineage, i have seen the emphasis given to self discipline and innate restraint… i do believe Patanjali knew what he was doing when he placed yama and niyama on top of the ashtanga heap!

    Thank you for 'setting the record straight'.

    And thank you, Dearbhla, for sharing this info on FB!

  4. pranalisa says:

    awesome post…passing this on now!!

  5. jane says:

    When I read the Times article, I thought, I can hardly wait for Dr Pooles' response! Thank you Dr Poole.

  6. [...] is what is meant by siddhis, or states of being accomplished through the practice of yoga and meditation. Some of these include [...]

  7. shiva says:

    WOW. Excellent response to NYT. Impressed by your knowledge. Namaste.

  8. Heidi Rayden says:

    Excellent article & response to the NYC article – thank you!

  9. Dr. Katy Poole Katy Poole says:

    Thanks for all the comments here and throughout Facebook. In re-reading my article, I would like to add an important disclaimer. My views on Vedic yajna and tapas are quite simplistic and could be described from an entirely different perspective according to how one "reads" Indian spiritual history and texts. This is the beauty of studying the history of religions and especially as they have played out on the Indian subcontinent. Multiplicity of views — of ways of seeing — enrich our lives, our understanding and ultimately our spiritual practices and approaches to the "Divine." So I really want to be clear that I'm not asserting a "definitive" in my article, but articulating perhaps a more appropriate starting point to having a real discussion about yoga's origins and development throughout history than the grossly misinformed and quite offensive assertions made by William Broad. I sincerely hope my colleagues in the academic sector will contribute their responses to further the dialogue. There are brilliant scholars of Religious Studies — including Douglas Brooks, Carlos Pomeda, Christopher Wallis — among other "less" known among yoga circles like Jeffrey Lidke, Marcy Braverman-Goldstein, Chip Callahan, David McMahan, Sudama Kennedy, and so on. Step up, my old friends, and speak. Bring it out of the ivory tower and dispel the ignorance that's holding everything back — especially now since some of you have tenure! :-)

  10. Pankaj Seth says:

    Great rebuttal. The only thing I would correct would be the statement that historians place the Vedic age as starting at 5th century BCE. Linguists persist in this, but not historians who take into account finding from the fields of archeology and hydrology and more.

    Vedic scholar Dr. Nicolas Kazanas explains why the date of the Rg Veda should be pushed back to about 6000 years before present…

    The late dating of the RV is connected to the now discredited ‘Aryan invasion theory’… the discourse is changing therefore, as indicated below:

    http://www.omilosmeleton.gr/pdf/en/indology/IEL&IAI.pdf

    video lectures: http://www.omilosmeleton.gr/en/multimedia_en.asp

    A chapter entitled “The beginnings of Hinduism” in “A survey of Hinduism”, by Klaus K. Klostermaier; SUNY Press… http://www.sunypress.edu/pdf/61438.pdf

    People should have a look at these sources and decide for themselves.

  11. Yoga is one of ancient Hindu philosophies. Although spread of Buddhism, had some impact on funding and support of yoga, it still adopted many yoga philosophies and practices. Islam and British rulers, in later years, not only eliminated resources and support, they in fact ridiculed and opposed yoga practices. Underground sex industry was only way for supporting the yoga practices – Tantra and Asana. Thankfully, it helped to keep the yoga flame going and we all have benefited from it.
    Even e-commerce that we all take for granted today, was once supported by porn industry. It doesn’t mean that it is meant only for only that application.
    Yoga is much more than just postures and breathing. It was an integrated and harmonious approach for living in universe

  12. Dr. Katy Poole Katy Poole says:

    Hi Pankaj,

    Thank you for pointing out the debate about the history of the Vedic period. I didn't bring up the controversy in dating in my article because I didn't want to confuse readers. So I relied on what's "classically" agreed upon by most mainstream academics. (But not all academics even agree on these dates.) From Hindu points of view, of course, the Vedas are ananta—without beginning or end, eternal. And Vedic concepts of time also add to the difficulty in dating anything to satisfy the Western penchant for linear time and history. For me, the dates don't matter as much as the central authority of the Veda as a "starting point" to understanding anything that's arisen as a "later" spiritual expression from out of it—including Buddhist and Jain traditions. I'm partial to Vedic authority as that which unifies all the streams of thought and practice that inform the vast geography of Indian spiritualities, but not everyone agrees with me, which is why I've always loved studying the history of religions in India. No one will ever put you up on a cross for having a different view, belief or practice. Multiple views are heralded as superior to the one definitive conclusion. It makes it difficult to explain Indian traditions—especially "Hinduism"—to novice Westerners, however, without being a dreaded "reductionist." It's like navigating traffic in modern India. You can't explain why no one is stopping at the red light or staying in their lane or why cows are sleeping in the middle of the road. You just have to go with it and find your own way. That's why I keep returning to India after 25 years and why, like navigating the traffic, I still haven't figured it all out. But I absolutely enjoy the challenge. Thanks for bringing up a really important point.

    • Pankaj Seth says:

      Katy, thanks for your response. I hear you, but also allow me to say that academics need to get up to speed. We now know that Max Muller invented the dates based upon his need to place them later than the biblical flood (thought to be 2350 BCE), and that he stated the ad hoc nature of his dating the end of his life. I quote from the SUNY Press link I gave above…

      "This putative “Aryan invasion” was dated ca. 1500 bce, and the composi- tion of the hymns of the Ṛgveda was fixed between 1400 and 1200 bce. The Aryan invasion theory was conceived on pure speculation on the basis of com- parative philology, without any archaeological or literary evidence to support it. It was resisted as unfounded by some scholars from the very beginning.3 In the light of recent archaeological finds, it has become less and less tenable. Nevertheless, the Aryan invasion theory, recently downgraded to an Aryan migration theory, is still widely defended and forms part of many standard histories of Hinduism. In the following, the arguments pro and con will be presented, and it will be left to the reader to judge the merits of the case."

      I hereby challenge "classical" academics to refute what follows after the above quote, or to stand down.

  13. Dr. Katy Poole Katy Poole says:

    Pankaj,

    You're preaching to the choir here. I just put in a date truthfully. I could have put in any date. To me it doesn't matter. The bigger point matters. And what you raise here is a much larger issue—the "colonization" of knowledge. I would also extend your argument to the word "Hindu" itself, which is a product of colonization and should be challenged with the same vigor as you present here.

    As far as academics "standing down"—good luck. Academia is a highly controlled space, which is one of the reasons I left my career to become what I call an "infopreneur" in the realm of popular yoga and spirituality. I can publish what I want, whereas in academia any new idea or different idea that I'd want to see published would be under the scrutiny of a "review" committee comprised of old-guard academics. The same is true for the tenure process. Scholarship in the university is status quo. You either play by the rules or you don't get tenure. Heck, you don't even get through doctoral studies. And much of playing by the rules is accepting outdated (literally in the context of this discussion) and definitely unchallenged (unless they conform to the current trend of accepted scholarship) bodies of knowledge.

    • Pankaj Seth says:

      Katy, maybe the date doesn't matter to you, but still you put in some date. Why did you choose that date, especially if you are aware of the sources I have linked to, and you left academia and are no longer beholden to certain agendas? When I wrote "I hear you", I expressed solidarity with you, but still I felt to point out what I did.

      However, now you're saying that the date doesn't matter. But it does matter, in the context of the colonization of history, and I agree the term 'hindu' is to be taken on as well, and it will be. I would ask you to, in the future, when a date is to be used, that you give some idea of its context. Otherwise, you are going along with something you left (academia).

      Academia will have to absolutely change its tune. Just like it changed its tune in biology from 'animals feel no pain'. Academics will in all probability, in this internet era, face direct opposition to their hokey views not supported by evidence. Witzel at Harvard has been found to mistranslate a part of the Vedic record, and which mistranslation was useful for of his pet 'aryan invasion theory'. He was not invited to the last conference in India. Prof Kazanas and others have exposed him in academic circles and in public. The 'truth will prevail', if we all do our best to go with this Vedic teaching.

      All the best, and thanks again for a terrific rebuttal of Broad's disjointed thesis. And thanks also for this conversation which highlights certain important issues, which otherwise might not have come to light here.

      • Dr. Katy Poole Katy Poole says:

        What I meant by "it doesn't matter" is that my article is not about the dating of the Vedic period. Most readers don't even know what the Vedic period is enough to care about when it might have taken place. (In other words, I think as a scholar and life-long practitioner of Yoga, I have a much more basic job to accomplish in my writing and teaching.) And now through your comments, if anyone is interested in the controversy surrounding this particular issue, they have venues to explore. I was more concerned in this article about shifting the attention from "sex cult practices" to a conceptual point of yoga's origins that may be more productive in discussions about recent controversies in the yoga community. That's a more significant debate in light of recent press releases that have truly distorted yoga's place in the popular consciousness and why I deliberately "reduced" my remarks to the internalization of sacrifice, so I could push other scholars to respond to that point. If you have something to say in response to that, I'd be much more open to a discussion than a back and forth about dates that truly distracts from my larger and more important point. And if I were pushed to declare my views about historical dating in India, I would say it's all political—including your views—and that's a different discussion entirely than what I raise in my article. I'm not saying it's not important, but it wasn't the point of my article. That's all. Best of luck and thanks for raising the issue.

        • Pankaj Seth says:

          I have given reasons for my views and ask that they be critiqued if possible. To give this or that date should be based upon something. I have said that the early dating of the Rg Veda (from 1500 BCE to 500 BCE) is due to the ad hoc approach of Muller, and which has been superceded by a more robust historical approach, in which scientists from all over the world are participating. This approach takes into account archeology, hydrology, metereology, and not just philology. I am a scientist by training, and am insisting upon a scientific approach, no matter where it leads. I'm with you in what you write overall, but do not appreciate being told that my views of historical dating are political.

          As to your point about Yajna moving from the exterior realm to the interior realm…

          As Joseph Campbell writes, "A ritual is the enactment of a myth.". Enacting a ritual is to re-mind oneself of one's origins, essence, nature, identity, to tell and enter one's story. The historical analysis always ends in a puff of smoke, the first cause always infinitely far away. A civilization beholden to the philosophy of Materialism, like the West cannot look beyond history, but cannot ever obtain a complete history either… that's impossible.

          The horizontal approach, the historical, can be contrasted with the vertical approach, the mythic. Where mind is seen as a deeper principle than phenomena which arise and falls within the purview of mind, there the vertical is seen as a deeper approach. The historical analytic approach gives the type of knowledge known as 'vigyana', while yoga gives 'gyana', which is not an analytical, historical type of knowledge. Whether one utilizes external objects or not, the ritual's place is always internal, within oneself.

  14. Hilary Nudell says:

    Thank you. It seems William Broad has been given a free hand to be the Yoga writer for the Times. As a yoga teacher, I wish there were scholars representing us to the world not neophytes who also happen to be writers.

  15. Dee Greenberg Dee says:

    Katy Poole thank you so much for offering an intelligent rebuttal. Many of us have been waiting for this!

  16. Pankaj Seth says:

    Time mag has rebutted Broad's pseudoscience here… http://healthland.time.com/2012/02/29/does-yoga-r

    "Broad goes on to cite research that supports the idea that yoga can improve sex life. But this is where the argument falters. The quality of the data is questionable: the studies he references are either old, uncontrolled or published in obscure journals. Two studies examine the effects of fast breathing, rather than yoga itself, finding that this does enhance genital arousal in women. Broad also claims that yoga can increase a woman’s ability to “think off” — or experience orgasm without any physical stimulation.

    However, while it’s possible that there’s something about yoga that is inherently sexy — perhaps it’s the scantily clad people exercising in close quarters? — Broad neglects to explore a critical issue. It’s not only powerful figures in yoga who have a tendency to stray.

    From John Kennedy and Newt Gingrich to Jimmy Swaggart and Warren Jeffs, top dogs — none of them yoga gurus — have long been known to take advantage of their position. It doesn’t take a yoga pose to arouse sexual appetites."

    • happy cow says:

      no but purity of heart needs to be developed otherwise one might be inclined towards selfish whims , yoga became such commercial business its truly appalling it lost its mysticism, all these scholars and hippy practitioners dressing up like saints please its just a sad picture , what about poor families that fight to support their kids they are true veda warriors vs chantings wanna bee Devis

  17. [...] “Truth is One: Wise People Speak of it in Various Ways.” ~ Dr. Katy Poole (elephantjournal.com) [...]

  18. [...] to look beyond the scantily-clad asana practitioners or the red-herring reference the Times’ Broad makes to the practice/alleged history of hatha yoga starting as a “sex [...]

  19. An extraordinary and deep exploration – and a potent rebuttal to “Broad brush stroke” reductionism … Thank you!!

  20. Baba Rampuri says:

    Bravo. I very much enjoy your point of view. "Colonialization of Knowledge" warrants a long awaited discussion.

  21. Mark says:

    I noticed the New York Times has not enabled any online comments to William Broad's recent article.

    Dr. Poole, can you, and/or your academic colleagues, please consider writing a letter to the editor the NY Times for publishing, correcting the record with regard to the pure origins of yoga (Vedas). I was hoping for some scholar to rebut Broad's claims, but no one has stepped up as of yet, and the window of opportunity is closing fast.

    Otherwise, Broad's poor analysis goes uncontested in the NY Times platform. If it goes uncontested, you can bet that the editors are going to assign him to do more of this kind of hatchet journalism on the topic of yoga and perhaps broader Eastern philosophy. (BTW, does anyone know if William Broad Catholic?)

    Finally, since Broad failed to do so, perhaps someone can give a primer to NY Times readers on "yoga" and how various pronouns determine the different types of yoga, which do not often involve physical postures. Sometimes it just needs to be spelled out.

    Thank you for your dedication to the truth.

  22. Raghavendra says:

    Thank you Katy for taking the time to respond to such insulting article!

    Namaste!

    Raghavendra

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  24. michelle says:

    Thank the GODDESS FINALLY some clear articulation..I am also hoping for a lot more discussion on this subject!
    It is a RARE GIFT to hear a WOMAN from a western academic background offer with such a potent view, and I saw from you BIO that you moved away from just hanging out in/with the academy and are hanging out in the culture in conversation- WONDERFUL, thank you so much!

  25. happy cow says:

    Yoga is good with tons of discretion and be wary of fake Gurus making lots of money of it . Stick to Jesus , Shirdi Sai , Ramalinga do service to your brothers and sisters at no cost or expectations in todays times there is no need for complex rituals none of it will save you , internal worship and love is all its needed . NY times article has a good point so save your money on yoga clothing and jewelry and start to seek true Divine within . Look at life of St Theresa , Ramalinga , Shirdi Sai ,
    or Mother Theresa
    best of luck

  26. pranami says:

    happy cow, there are hundreds of thousands of ascetics living penny less life for society. These ascetics are called sadhus. They are knowledgeable because of their vast experience gained through travel. They help people without any expectations. They are the balancing factors in the society which is excessively going corrupt. Theresa etc may be the names media brings before us, but real 'yogis', 'sadhus' are working selflessly for the society as a matter of tradition of 'sanatan dharma' for tens of centuries. Respect them. Prem aur Shanti.

  27. Yogamamba says:

    We seem to be missing the point here. Neither Yoga as a word nor the practices of yoga produce yoga. Because yoga exists the word and all the texts and practices relating to yoga talk about it. What is Yoga? Rather we should be asking what is a yogi? Simply a yogi is one who knows himself. Once a person knows themselves they know themselves as the yoga – the oneness- itself. Trying to use the word yoga or to even try to describe or talk about yoga as a goal to be reached doesnt work because Self- Yoga- is ever reached. Like using the word silence trying to describe silence. Try to describe silence? In the presence of silence even the word silence must vanish. So too this word yoga fails to describe itself and what it represents. In the presence of oneself – which is indescribable being that in which all is described – the words including the word yoga become redundant. In the presence of Yoga – knowing oneself as the yoga itself – words and the need for description drop out and dissappear – because The Whole – The Yoga – like the silence – once known and understood is Self Evident. If we have to name this oneness – this beingness, this completeness – that is oneself – we can use the word – Yoga.

  28. yogamamba says:

    'But if I were held hostage against my will and forced to surrender my views on yoga’s origins for a ransom, I would seek for it in the Vedas, which considerably pre-date Mr. Broad’s medieval point of conception.' Yoga's origins are not to be found anywhere but the human being as the human being. Yoga continues to exist as the human being. Until we all stop looking so hard in practices and rituals searching for spirituality and identity in vedantic, yogic, or unanishadic wisdom we will not get the truth – or the joke. Realise the simple truth expounded by the vedas and upanishads is that we are the truth – i.e the end of knowledge. We miss the whole point of all the texts. The Truth of the human being is none other than you – You are the truth. Whether as the asbolute formless (consciousness) or in the form of a human being. Without the human being to think over these things there is nothing. Its time we get the joke and get over it. Hearing a joke whats the most important thing? You have to get the joke. Thats all. What pactices or rituals do we need to be human beings? None. What beliefs do we need in order to be ourselves? None. Existng as That already with or without the beliefs – with or without all the ideas and ideologies, and practices – all we need is knowledge to get rid of our ignorance. Ignorance of what? Oursleves. Get a proper teacher. Like mathematics. Can anyone get rid of their ignorance of mathematics and understand mathematics without a proper teacher? No. So how can you ever hope to understand the truth of of who you are – the human being – the consciousness – without a proper teacher. People can talk about mathematics and algebra and you can know about these but until someone shows you the truth of it and how it all works you will never understand. The same apppiles here to yourself. We have all heard about the human being and even exist as one but until someone bothers to explain the truth of who you are and how it all works you will never get it. First though before we can accept the truth of who we are we have to let go all our ideas we have accumulated and picked up along the way about ourselves. Thats a little difficult.

  29. [...] own reaction, I felt it was only fair to read it myself and see what the book is really all about. Mr. Broad says that a synonym of science is organized skepticism. I am [...]

  30. [...] “The fact is A single: Smart Folks Talk about this in a variety of Approaches” ~ Doctor… (elephantjournal.com) [...]

  31. leader says:

    Hey learned something newnow now I’m set for now. Thanks!

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