The Nature of Spiritual RealizationThe Nature of Spiritual Realization
The Nature of Spiritual Realization

God-Realization involves
a series of permanent shifts in identity
until the Ultimate Divine Identity is Realized


The shift in Realization from the sense of reality as a God-less universe to one in which one is standing as the Divine Being is an extraordinary one. And so the Ultimate Realization does not happen overnight, nor even in a single Realization. Instead, a progression of Realizations typify the Way. And at the core of these Realizations is a shift in Identity. Avatar Adi Da Samraj likes to use a particular quote the Indian Master Shankara, because it nicely summarizes these shifts (and the change that spiritual practice undergoes as well):

Avatar Adi Da SamrajIn [the] tradition of Advaita Vedanta, there is a very interesting summary statement, associated with Shankara, of devotion to the Divine: 'From the point of view of the body, I am Your servant. From the point of view of the mind, I am a part of You, a fraction within You. From the point of view of the Self, truly, I am You. Any statement of equation with the Divine is authentic only from the "Point of View" of Ultimate Realization. Yet identified with the body, or, even more advanced, identified with the mind, subtly as Yogis are . . . from the point of view of such identification, the great statements are not true, the statement 'I am You', or, said another way, 'Thou art That', is not true. Identified with the body you are the servant of God, subordinate to the Divine. From the point of view of the mind, you are not the Divine. You are a part of the Great Unity, seeking Union with the Great Unity, or That Which is One. Therefore, previous to Ultimate Realization, the philosophy, the philosophical point of view, the presumption, must acknowledge the position you are in, acknowledge what you are identified with.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, Ishta

Thus, the growth in Realization, the increasing depth of Realization, proceeds through the following sequence of Realizations:

1. I am the physical body in a still, often, apparently God-less, materialistic universe, the universe of my physical senses. But I now have sufficient human maturity, and have been sufficiently Graced with the Revelation of God (through my Spiritual Master's Transmission), that I am now aware that the degree to which I am not feeling God for Real on any regular basis is not evidence that God doesn't exist. Rather it is an exact reflection of the amount of counter-egoic (even bodily) work that is required of me in order for the "vision of God" to be restored as my ordinary Realization in every moment.

2. I am the physical body, but now tangibly aware of the Divine Presence, thanks to the unrelenting Transmission of my Spiritual Master. I am now rightly practicing as the 'servant' of God, conforming the body-mind to better serve as a vehicle that conducts the force and Presence of the Divine. The core of my practice is conscious absorption in You, conscious surrender of all my (otherwise unconsciously self-contracted, self-absorbed) parts – mind, body, emotion, and breath – so that they are absorbed in You. I am fulfilling what was for Hamlet only a yearning:

O, that this too too solid flesh would melt, thaw and resolve itself into a dew!

Shakespeare, Hamlet, Act 1, Scene 2

3. I am spirit or energy. The physical body is spirit or energy. The entire cosmos is spirit or energy. E = mC2, but I am now directly aware of the equation of matter and energy as my actual experience. I have "lived to God" long and deeply enough that a fundamental, even physical conversion has occurred in the body-mind. What I am is not fundamentally that which dies when the physical body dies; I am most primarily the "mind" (or “soul”) part of the body-mind, which survives the death of the more superficial "body" part. Thus I have been set free of my mortal fear. I am now directly aware that "I am a part of You", and what I used to have to even muscularly feel through to You, my physicality, has now been transformed to become as if transparent (to feeling). My practice continues to be absorption in You through contemplation of You in the form of my Spiritual Master, but it is now easier and more profound.

4. I am Consciousness. Even “soul” is understood to be a limit – like the physical body, it too is not immortal, but rather, a passing thing. The entire body-mind complex, body and soul, has been brought into a profound equilibrium through steady, prolonged absorption in You, and the moment Gracefully occurs when the self-contraction is relaxed even beyond any identification with the body-mind. I suddenly discover: "I am You". What I am, most primally, is neither matter nor energy, but simply Consciousness Itself. You are my True Self, only appearing in the apparent human and Spiritual guise of my Master for the sake of bringing about this Realization of Identification with You. My practice has shifted from communion with and absorption in You, to Identification with You. Even so, there still appears to be a "difference" between Consciousness and the universe of arising phenomena.

5. There Is Only God. The Great and Ultimate Realization, Divine Enlightenment, has occurred. I have completely Awakened. I am Consciousness, but there is not the slightest difference between Me and anything. All beings and worlds are arising in Me. Everything is directly tacitly recognizable as a modification of My Own Consciousness. I am Perfectly Eternally Free. I am Perfectly Eternally Happy. Paradoxically, I may still be associated with My human body for the span of its years, and thus may serve as an Instrument of Realization for all beings who still suffer the illusion and activity of separateness, effortlessly and continuously transmitting this Revelation of God to all other beings.

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