Authentic Spiritual Teachers

Portals In the Desert

LEASBURG DAM SP, NM—After getting out of bed, I immediately wrote this down in my journal. As with most of my journal posts, it’s not well thought out, nor fleshed out. Just a typical (for me) 5am insight. I am no expert on spiritual teachers or their teachings (I don’t follow or keep up with them).

Date: February 6, 2013 6:47 AM 

Authentic Spiritual Teachers

This morning, during my early morning musings, it became apparent why certain (still living) teachers feel authentic to me (Tolle, Adyashanti) while most others don’t.

When you step through the gateless gate at the top of the mountain, you have, as I see it, three choices:

  1. Stay at the top (ie: Ramana Maharshi) engulfed in emptiness and with no desire (rare, since it requires someone to take care of you),
  2. Turn around and head back down (and often start teaching),
  3. Or continue onward, heading down the mountain—not the way you came up, but down the side few people travel.

The truly (in my opinion) authentic teachers, the ones I consider “Illumined,” are the ones who continue onward (#3), who explore the “new” real world on the other side of the mountain. The side where the essences of Life—the core archetypes—are revealed and felt and experienced in their beauty and pureness: Love, Wonder, Lust, Anger, Will, Uncertainty, Gratitude, Confusion, ….

Not the dead, emptiness “world” that most of today’s nondual teachers focus on, but the land of raw, pure, untainted emotions that make up Life itself. Not feelings that are shunned or explained away, nor bent to fit an ideal, belief or theory—but which are felt and lived and experienced unabashedly. The divine world beyond thoughts and theories where God Herself resides in raw purity.

I believe that all authentic spiritual teachers are, by necessity, mystics—that the Will that operates through them is not entirely their own (the duplex personality).

Adyashanti calls God within the Infinite.

Tolle (last I heard) calls God within Presence.

I simply call Her Her.

Note to readers: After passing through the “gateless gate,” when the personal self was seen through, I at first did what most do, #2 above: theorized, explained and pontificated. That was until She finally drove me back up and over the other side of the mountain during the course of the first year with a series of bizarre and ongoing “mishaps.” See September 2009 though September 2010 in the Archives at the right for various examples.


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7 thoughts on “Authentic Spiritual Teachers

  1. As for number one…don’t forget those folks who people have found deep in meditation in a cave after, like, three hundred years! Doesn’t always require someone else to caretake. :-p

  2. Don’t particularly like the mountain analogy because it implies a pinnacle after which there is nowhere to go but down. Life is about experience and it’s not climbing but ever expanding, with the gateless gate being just one of a multitude of possibilities.

    • Actually, the mountain analogy is Adyashanti’s with the top being “enlightenment” and how you have to come down from the mountain to bring it into the world.

      I added the two sides (mystical vs non-mystical).

      But just keep in mind, this is a journal entry (please see the top of the post).

  3. Agree with your choice of those two wonderful teachers. They also demonstrate a remarkable humility and lack of defensiveness, which to me are signs of someone who really “has it”. When you have talked about many non-dual teachers being stuck in emptiness, I always thought to myself, “what about Adya?”

    I think there are also great teachers who teach by example rather than speaking, like Mother Theresa. I imagine there are many more of these, but we do not know of them because they work silently behind the scenes. Being of selfless service to others may be the truest marker of someone who has truly let go of ego.

  4. Have you looked at James Swartz – he doesn’t say it’s his teaching, it’s true Vedanta but for me it has shed a lot of light on ‘problem’ areas.

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