Redemptive Love – Adyashanti

Redemptive Love – Adyashanti

During his talk at SAND 2019, Adyashanti shared an experience of redemptive love and went on to talk of the transforming power of deeper values of love. An excellent talk.

I wrote about a prior talk he gave on this topic. Also, here’s an article that puts it into some larger context, as a stepping stone to universal, and then Divine love.

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  1. herwig

    Thank you! 🙂
    I love this. It begins a bit lengthy with various personal anecdotes, but retrospectively from his conclusion this structure makes a lot of sense.

    “O Marvel! a garden amidst the flames.
    My heart has become capable of every form:
    it is a pasture for gazelles and a convent for Christian monks,
    and a temple for idols and the pilgrim’s Kaa’ba,
    and the tables of the Torah and the book of the Quran.
    I follow the religion of Love: whatever way Love’s camels take,
    that is my religion and my faith.”

    Muḥammad ibnʿArabī,

    al-Andalus (Spain) 1165 – 1240

    1. Hi Herwig
      Actually, I quite enjoyed the opening story. It informed the whole rest of the talk. Great quote. Rumi is a fav.
      “They say there is a window from one heart to another
      How can there be a window where no wall remains?”
      ― Rumi

    1. Yes, Jeff. As the fetters of our contractions fall away, we can discover layers of love far beyond romantic love. Adya spoke to the power of redemptive love. There is unconditional love. Then a higher octave of love that can unfold in God Consciousness where we can be like a fountain of love. And so forth up to pure Divinity.

  2. Eric

    Hi Davidya. So glad I subscribed to your blog. This talk touches upon what I have always felt to be a blind spot in my experience. Besides being handicapped with what appears to be terminal mental thickness, as I celebrate my 64 years of humanness, there has always been a sense of a diminished capacity to love, not only others but myself as well. As my understanding of nonduality broadens it has become increasingly clearer to me what the nature of love looks and feels like and how it manifests itself through me. Adyashanti’s explanation along with your previous article about the many layers of love have helped to enrich my understanding. I fully intend to take up his invitation to see life through the eyes of the heart also and maybe stop hopping around on only one (spiritual) foot. Thanks

    1. Hi Eric
      Yes, the unfolding has 2 sides, Atman and Sattva, the masculine and feminine, Shiva and Shakti, etc. It’s common these days for some paths to emphasize a renunciate consciousness-only approach, ignoring healing, heart opening, and the richness thats possible. This is why you see less talk of bliss and love in some circles.
      Some teachers have recognized the issue and are trying to address it. At the Science and Nonduality conference, for example, there have been some attempts to create a panel on heart awakening but its not gelled yet.
      Try not to make a mood of love in such a practice. Thats faking it. It’s a more a noticing. You may see some emotional reaction to the activity – notice that. That can help heal the resistance to love. 🙂

      1. herwig

        It‘s my joy.

        I was a few years late. The elder brother of a classmate of mine was on the course in Rishikesh and they had a huge poster size photograph on the wall with him, Maharishi and the Beatles.

        My spiritual guide and teacher for many years was a lady whose husband owned a brick factory. She was one of the first TM practitioners (the generation of Helena Olsen) and Maharishi persuaded her to build a small meditation academy ca. 20 miles away from my birthplace. When it was inaugurated, Maharishi stayed there for about half a year. The Beatles were not there, but Donovan, Brian Jones and a few more of the guys.
        I only know that from hearsay, I started later in 1970.
        But it was still quite hippie like then. It was a bit of a scandal at that time, lots of gossip in the village.
        Germany is a densely populated country with strict laws. You can’t just build an academy for some exotic hippies in the middle of nowhere.
        An elderly lady in a rather rural area, the wife of well-respected factory owner and employer, hanging around with a long-haired Indian guru and a bunch of hippies in the 1960s.
        But little by little she made human beings out of us 😉

        She was remarkable. Nothing of a hippie. Well bred, old-fashioned manners, disciplined and assertive. But she had a deep spiritual understanding and discernment.

        She was a profoundly loyal disciple, but the only one I know who had the guts to contradict Maharishi at times. When he insisted, she would follow, even when he nearly drove her crazy with his spontaneous and contradictory impulses (the kind of thing that Sri Anandamayima used to call “kheyal”).

        Maharishi called her “Mother of Germany” – but he still gave her a hard time. He always demanded the impossible. Nevertheless he granted her more discretion than any other TM-teacher.
        I profited from that.

        Without her I would probably not have been able to stand it through.
        Once, when I was totally desperate with the contradictions and the craziness of the movement and did not understand any more what it was all about, I asked her for advice. She was already over 80 then, and just sighed and said: “You must decide. Either Maharishi is an impostor or he comes from very high above.”

        I decided.

        1. Beautiful, Herwig. Thanks for sharing.
          I was a few years later. Became interested in the brain and consciousness, saw a poster for TM and learned. Was so impressed with the results, I attended many talks and went on and became a teacher in ’75-6.
          That opened a lot of inner doors and brought a foundational understanding. But yeah, organizational egos and politics. And I didn’t have a connection like that.
          I was lucky enough to see him a few times and speak with him once. The latter was an experience – his direct attention was like standing in a high wind. The mind went blank which washed away all the questions. (laughs)

          1. herwig

            Yes. I was lucky to catch the last few years when he was still more easily available. After initiation I wanted to verify the source and booked a 4-weeks course, on which he gave 3 lectures a day personally. (This was before video tape was introduced)
            It was like M. described his first encounter with his guru. I knew “this is IT”. I am not the meek believer kind of follower. I doubt everything. But as you say: when he was present, the questions were gone. The inner relationship has always been there. On my TTC he initiated us personally one by one without intercom. I saw him many times in the 70s, while he was in Switzerland. I met him in small groups and in large assemblies up to 6000 …
            He was always like a powerstation. Literally. Even from a distance before he was visible.
            He was not an individual teacher, and I was not very self-confident at that time.
            But I experienced a few exceptional encounters, when he intervened quite direct (and unexpected) in my life. With lasting consequences.
            Yes, I was lucky!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            Jai, Jai Jai

            1. Yes, Herwig, even by the mid-70s he was much less available. He did come to make us teachers and thats when I got to talk to him. Just 3 of us did from hundreds.
              We were made teachers in a group. I got to set up the puja for Maharishi and got a coconut for my puja. But he was way faster than we’d been learning and the coconut slowed me down (laughs).
              Yes, he was not there for individuals like a traditional guru. He was out to wake up the world. A whole wave of old TMers started waking up in around ’07 and he dropped the body not long after, saying his work was done.
              I do feel blessed for the understanding and the means. It’s made an incredible difference.

              1. herwig

                “the understanding and the means“ …
                Of course. I have never had any doubt about that. My teacher used to say that Maharishi’s objective was something higher – our getting enlightened was just a by-product.
                The bulk of meditators and participants on the international courses were always from North America, but he had an eye on Germany most of the time, especially during the Cold War period. And he stayed in Switzerland, fairly close to us.

                Things changed quickly. After 1975 it was difficult to see him. 1973 he made the first video tapes for the the SCI-courses and showed up less and less personally.

                But somehow I slipped in several times – a few times even by his own impulse.
                I do not know why. I am a nobody. Never had any function in the movement. Just a shattered ex-hippie and LSD freak from a broken family. I did not even think of becoming a TM-teacher. I just went to TTC because Maharishi had said everyone should come, and that was the only way to see him (and I wanted to learn the puja anyway).

                At the end of my TTC in Spain he had me and a group of c.a. 10 other Germans wait for initiation in his conference room three full days after all other participants had already been initiated and were leaving. While waiting we did dozens of pujas, hours of meditating. Meanwhile he sat behind a folding screen having organisational meetings and postponed the initiations again and again.
                When it was finally my turn, I was so intoxicated that I even forgot to say “Thank you!” So I asked for an appointment the next day and returned with a bunch of flowers to make up for that and to ask a few questions.
                Only few weeks later, I was back in Germany, I got a phone call, Maharishi was coming to negotiate the purchase of a plot for a forest academy in my area (some rich meditator had arranged that confidentially with the community). So I went there, he was sitting in the classroom of a village school with the local politicians and representatives of the community that owned the land.
                He then was in a habit of planning lots of academies (2 per 1 million population) – none of them was ever built.

                So he went into the snowy winter forest (with sandals) in a pickup, I in the back on the platform.

                The next day a furious storm of indignation broke out in the local press and beyond. WThe yogi wants to import Hinduism through the backdoor to our faithful Christian land”. Meanwhile Maharishi was already back in Switzerland or elsewhere.

                The leader and initiator of the protest, the local evangelist minister, was the uncle of a girl I had initiated only a couple of days before – a coincidence I was not aware of at that time. This protest was the beginning of a nationwide campaign of the churches and the state against TM. The German movement never really recovered from that.

                The girl had trouble with her family for years. We married a few years later.

                I have several anecdotes of this quality. Most of them somehow ambiguous. My teacher once said, Maharishi created the movement, it is for him to decide, if he wants to destroy it. Bang!
                The basics of “the understanding and the means“ have always been clear, the policies not at all.
                He could soothe the heart and torture the intellect at the same time. Up and down in the centrifuge.

                Retrospectively, I can read a message out of it: You need not understand all of it. You are with us, but you are not the protagonist.

                A strange way of telling me. And why? I am still totally unimportant.


                1. Its not really about your status, Herwig. It’s about your receptivity and openness. That allows source to move through you.
                  Many spiritual orgs are like big karma machines. I think the teacher sometimes enjoys seeing someone not in the drama.
                  But I agree – he was working on a whole other level. It seems that sometimes he gave people busy work, projects to work on that would go nowhere but would resolve karma. Other times, he would test natures support and see where things could flower. And not.
                  Some projects that did flower were abandoned soon afterward.
                  Funny how things can be intertwined like that. Thanks for sharing.

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