Wishing you a very merry Holy Day season with this heart-opening and inspiring festive satsang with Shunyamurti and the Sat Yoga Sangha!
"We’re not celebrating a historical event, we’re celebrating a metaphor. But to celebrate a metaphor accurately, you have to realize that it refers to you. It’s not about someone else."
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So we’re here to celebrate Christmas. In India they call it “Kish Mish”, which means “raisins” and they hand out raisins. It’s the nearest word they have in Hindi, and they took it, but others will call it Krishnamas, because Christ is based on Krishna, who of course is based on earlier manifestations, such as Zarathustra was the first virgin birth, and then the archetype got very popular and you had a whole bunch of others all happening to be born on December 25th. Right? We know that story. So we’re not celebrating a historical event, we’re celebrating a metaphor. But to celebrate a metaphor accurately, you have to realize that it refers to you. It’s not about someone else. OK?
So you see this is the problem with all the religions of Kali Yuga. They both reveal the truth and obscure it at the same time, and they defile it through obscuring it. And this is the sin of religions, and so we have to go from sin to synergy, by realizing our oneness, and transcend the sense of separation and difference. So it’s very important that people who are, let’s say, from the Jewish persuasion, realize that there is something very important to learn from Christianity, right? And vice versa. Christians generally don’t pay much attention to the Jewish wisdom, unless they happen to be studying Kabbalah or something like that, but there’s a tremendous amount of wisdom in the Old Testament, which is why Christians didn’t just lop it off. They had to keep the Old Testament—it was very important because Christianity would have lost its meaning without it.
But we also have to learn from Islam, which is a very beautiful ancient religion. Much of the wisdom of which comes all the way back from Zarathustra. Of course Buddhism as well, and the Vedic culture before that, and the Taoist, we have to learn from all of them, the entire legacy of human wisdom, both religious and secular, are necessary to be integrated. If we miss out on any aspect of it, including modern science, then we will not get the full picture, we will not be able to connect all the dots. And since the universe is made of information, the only way you graduate from this wisdom school that the world is, is by accurately connecting all the dots. OK? So this is important that we not close our minds to something thinking “oh that’s for someone else”—no. It’s all meant for us. The one God created all the religions, so let’s learn from everything.
Now as far as I’m concerned, the main teaching of the Christian dispensation is a continuation of an insight from the Torah. Now if we go back to the Torah, when Moshe climbed Mount Sinai and spoke to God via the burning bush, he asked him, “Who may I say is calling?” Who is calling me to go to the Pharaoh, and who is calling the Pharaoh to let my people go? Right? And the bush replied very simply, “Tell him, I am sent you.” So there it was revealed that the name of God is “I am.”
This is very important. Is there anyone here who cannot validly say “I am”? Is there anyone here who doubts that they are? Is there anyone here who can’t honestly and truly say “I am?” OK, well that means all of you are manifestations of God. Do you understand that? That’s what God is. That is the reality of God—"I am.” In everyone. Nothing but that. It’s that simple. People want to make it so difficult, all this mystification—it’s simply that.
The problem is, you’re not satisfied with “I am.” No, it’s, “I am angry. I am sad. I am lacking. I am inadequate. I am toxic. I am stupid. I deserve more than I’m getting. I am this... I am that.”… Why can’t you stop with, “I am.”? If you stop with, “I am” then you are God. If you add something to it, you’re a human sinner. OK?
That’s all religion is about. Stop adding crap to the “I am”. Just be. OK? It’s that simple. You don’t have to do anything. You just have to stop adding to the reality of what you are. OK? So I want everyone here to take five seconds and realize, how do I feel when I am just “I am.”? And I don’t add anything to it. (“I’m miserable, I’m sad, I’m hungry”—whatever)—when you don’t add anything to it, you just have a pure “I am.” How do you feel? Please.
OK. Did everybody like being “I am.”? Isn’t it a way to let go of everything? “I am.” That’s it. Punto. Full stop. That is the celebration of Christmas. That’s all, that’s all it is.
Now, what did Christianity do with that? Lately I’ve been listening to these Russian Orthodox YouTube things, because they’re actually closer than the Catholic tradition to the original, but every time they open or close a lecture they say, “He is risen!”
Well now, if God said his name is “I am”, why are they changing it to “he is.”? It’s “I am risen.” I am is risen, not he is. It’s not someone else. God is not someone else. OK? That’s the problem with Christianity. It forgets that God is your “I am” and it says it’s “he is.” Not only he is, he was. He’s gone. Right? Well now you’re bereft. Where is your God? Where’s your Self? But it’s not somebody else, because it’s not a body, it’s not a being, it’s Presence. Presence has no form, and Presence is what animates everyone. It’s the same energy, the same consciousness. It is the “I am.” that everyone is naturally, automatically, inherently, from long before your body was born, to infinitely long after it is back to dust. The “I am.” remains—immortal, eternal, the light always lit.
OK? That’s it. It’s very simple. So the incarnation is simply the recognition of the “I am.” while that “I am.” is functioning through a body. It is the refusal to identify, or misidentify with the body, and say instead “I am this organism that’s too thin, too fat, too small, too big, too whatever...” and instead you stay with the “I am.” and not identify with the body. Then you’re a true Christian. But as soon as you identify with the body, you fall into what they call “sin”, because you’re missing the mark. Now your identity is going through a filter. Now you’re no longer the pure “I am.” Now you’re the “I wish I was something else..” and of course then you have lost God-consciousness.
So, the story of Christianity is about the crucifixion of the “I am.” Right? That’s the story. And what is the ego, except the crucifixion of the “I am.”? It’s the torment of the “I am.” How many of you are crucifying your “I am.”? Is there anyone here who is still crucifying their “I am” with self-attacking thoughts? If you are, you are the anti-Christ. That’s what the ego is. And that’s Satan too. So if you want to be on the side of God, you stick with the “I am.” and you never attack yourself, and you obviously can never attack someone else, because they are also “I am.”
Now one important nuance of this, is that the “I am.” is always “I am.” It doesn’t become “We are.” Not only is it not “he is” but it’s not even “we are.” Why? Because “we are” is a sign of tribal thinking. This was what Christianity replaced from the Jewish tradition. There’s no such thing as a chosen people, there are individuals who choose to be God-conscious, but just because someone in your tribe might be God-conscious, doesn’t mean everyone else is. It is an individual decision that each one must make, to return to the “I am.”
Because when you are a child you will be given another name, and told to identify with a body, and adapt to society and become this or that, for the sake of the other of society, and you will be told, “forget the ‘I am’”. Right? That’s what adaptation to society is about. So the person who returns to the “I am.” and who then transmits the truth of the “I am.” is the one who is choosing to live in God-consciousness. But it is always a movement of individuality, and differentiation from the tribe, from the herd, from the mass, to be able to say “I am.”
Because you have to think for yourself, because even if you were encouraged to believe some of this, you are still socialized into thinking you’re an ego saying “I am.” So then it would just become another religion—no—it’s not about saying the words “I am.” it’s about being the “I am.” which is prior to thought. Right? The “I am.” is not about thought. Thought is what comes after, and that obscures the “I am.” The “I am.” remains in silence. And if thoughts come out, they come from the silent Source, so that they have wisdom, they have truth, they resonate with the “I am.” They don’t obscure it, and they don’t deny it, and they don’t turn it into some illusory imitation of themselves.
You see the idea of Christianity is imitation: Imitatio Dei. You have to imitate yourself? That’s what you’re taught? How could Christianity be authentic if you have to imitate God? If you’re not realizing you are already God? But if you’re not already God, you’re never going to achieve salvation. Right? And the whole idea of being a Christian is “I am saved.” But you are not saved until you are the “I am.” Until then you still need saving, but you are saved from your own misidentification of who you are. And so the birth of Christ is the birth of your realization that the “I am.” is your Real Self, without any additions. That’s the birth of Christ. It’s not some baby in a manger somewhere, it’s your rebirth as the purity of Presence, beyond thought and beyond identification with any images or concepts.
So, it’s all very simple, but they had to make it very difficult and mystified and all of that, to be able to justify having a whole clerical establishment that you’d have to pay to tell you their pseudo-secrets about, you know, the mystical esoteric levels of religious truth, which was never really there at all. There are no esoteric levels that are not available to everyone internally. You don’t need a priest to tell you anything, you just have to be the “I am.” and the wisdom will come directly from within you, that’s the key. If there’s any secret, it’s that. But you have to allow yourself to trust that the wisdom is within you, and the power, and the light, and the ability to love—you see?
But the ego, once the ego gets in place, the ego is a defense against love. Why? Because it got to many toxic versions of love, and therefore it doesn’t ever want to open its heart again. But it’s in agony, because its heart isn’t open, and it has lost touch with its own “I am.” because its own “I am.” is always emanating love. That’s what the “I am.” does—it’s a natural shining, a radiance of the purity of Being.
So the ego becomes an anti-Christ barrier to the Christ-self emerging, and until we make the decision to drop the ego—it’s a decision—then we cannot call ourselves true Christians, or true God, or true avatars, or true beings. Because the “I am.” is still obscured by other signifiers that modify its meaning and bring it down into a terrestrial level, rather than a celestial level. But the “I am.” in its purity, because the “I am.” when it’s not defined by predicates of any sort, it’s the formless Zero Point of consciousness, which is Shiva. And so the Shiva-consciousness, which is the reality of the “I am.” with all of its power, its truth, its capacity for transformation of itself, of the world, which is its dream, becomes awakened and activated, through the return to the “I am.”
But that decision is the ultimate step of individuation, and because it involves opening oneself, letting go of defenses, letting go of fear of vulnerability, letting of the illusion that you are somebody—because the “I am.” is not a body and it’s not someone. It is the Presence. It has no ego. It can’t appropriate it, right? As long as you stay in the “I am.” there’s no ego to try to make use of that, to make money out of it, or to make some other kind of territorial aggression out of it. Whereas, if “I’m a Christian, oh yeah, then I can attack others and feel justified in having crusades and all of that.” The same goes if I am a Muslim, or a Zionist, or a Buddhist, it doesn’t matter—whatever one is identifying with that is beyond the “I am.”—then justifies imposing on the other a kind of illusory moral superiority, that is actually the justification for an inferiority of moral consciousness, or in fact, an elimination of moral consciousness.
And so the “I am.” comes with the moral responsibility to see the “I am.” in everyone, and to offer the energy of the “I am.” which is that of Divine Love, to all—unconditionally, without playing favorites, and without any emotional reactivity that would project something other than the Godself onto anyone.
So if we’re going to celebrate Christmas and really mean it, then we have to very consciously remove any self-identification that obscures the “I am.” and never allow it to return. And if we do that, we will find that we’re immediately happy, we’re immediately without any lack, we’re immediately in union with the Source of our Being. But again, the “I am.” is not a verbal repetition like a prayer “I am. I am. I am…” No, it’s the realization of the “I” that doesn’t need to think to know itself. You don’t think “Oh maybe I am?” You don’t need to think, to try to figure that out through some logical process, right? You know it.
Now Descartes had to figure it out. He said, “I think therefore I am.” Ah, OK! But isn’t it really the reverse? “I am therefore I can think.” But I can also choose not to think. I am the master of my mind. So the “I am.” is prior to thought and it only obscured by thought, and that’s why, when you meditate and you’re in inner silence, the “I am.” emerges and it shifts the firing of the patterns of the neurons in the brain, because now they will all come from this “I am.” that is emanating an energy of love, and of light, throughout the physical organism, and into the dream field of the world, and will be transforming it, automatically, intuitively, because that’s what the “I am.” is and what it does.
So there’s no need to figure anything out, the only need there is, is to Be. And it’s when you stop trying to figure it out, with a limited finite mind, that could never grok the real meaning of “I am.” it cannot understand, what is Presence? You see, science has never been able to get even close to figuring out what consciousness is. That’s the ultimate mystery. But it’s the mystery that you are, not of something else out there. It’s the mystery of, “how come I can know all this? How come I can be in a state of lucidity? Why is it possible for me to love? Why is it possible for me to have consciousness that can link with everyone? And that can feel a resonance and be at home in nature?”
If it is at home in its own skin, if it’s not in a state of anxiety, then the “I am.” that emanates is at one with everything. It is limitless, it is non-local. And it effects the whole quantum unified field. It produces echoes, because it is echo-locating itself in the field, it is producing quantum wave function effects, that will echo back whatever is being put out. You put out love you’ll get love back. You put out paranoia you’ll get paranoia back. It’s very simple. So one who is awakened to the “I am.” is always going to allow the “I am.” to emanate, to its highest levels of vibration. Because that is the blessing, the only real blessing we can give to anyone, and the only way to receive the blessings of love, and to augment them, and multiply them, so that the energy field becomes ever stronger and ever more expanded, and magnetically draws those souls who are seeking the “I am.” but haven’t figured out that they are already it, and need to be in an energy-field that resonates with that state of consciousness, so that the obscurations can be let go of, and everyone can be free.
So the holiday is about liberation, right? It’s not just about one person’s appearance with a message of God, it is about the liberation of everyone’s mind from the shackles of a false identification, so that the “I am.” can re-emerge as the guiding light of the noosphere of our planet. And that in turn then allows everyone’s light to be lit, and that light will change history. Will change the nature of the order in which humans organize themselves, because they will be at a higher level of coherence.
If everyone is emanating from the same “I am-ness” then we will all be able to be totally coherent with each other, and coherent with the world, and coherent with a power then of expanding that coherence, and the changing the signal to noise ratio, of what’s going on in an incoherent world out there, and being therefore able to impress others with the possibility and the benefits of spiritual growth, to higher levels of consciousness in which the ego snake-skin can be shed, and the fullness of our creative intelligence can emerge. Because what a “new order” means, based on the “I am.” is that artists will again be transmitters of truth—that’s what the arts are really supposed to be about—but the truth of the “I am.” If it’s obscured, can never become the focus of the arts, but the whole idea is you realize the “I am.” and then you express it, you transmit it, you turn truth into beauty, and you turn beauty into social organizations that are just, that are fair, that are enjoyable to be a part of, that are not oppressive or militaristic, and are not all the things that we have to deal with today, and in which there is no deception.
We have become the people of the lie. The lie must be shed. So that the world can live in truth again. But if we are still living in a false self, then we are ourselves people of the lie. But to be the true Self, the “I am.” means that your love is of the nature of the love of the whole. The love of the “I” that is formless. OK? If your love is directed only to a form, or to a being who is in a formed body, then you have lowered the vibrational frequency and quality of your love, and you have turned it from Divine Love into mere human desire.
And human desire, because it functions in duality, will soon enough become its opposite, and love turns into hate at the human level very easily, or at least into disgust or disinterest, etc, because the human consciousness at the ego level cannot retain consistency, or object constancy. But the “I am.” has no objects, it has no other. It lives in unity because there is only the one “I am.”. It may be manifesting in many, but it is one out of many, it’s a ploribus unum. And so that one overcomes, supersedes the illusion of the manifold, and the world then becomes a manifestation of unity, and the vision that one has is that of nonduality. There is no otherness and therefore there are no enemies, and therefore there doesn’t appear any object of desire, because you have transcended the level at which desire appears, because desire is always based on lack. And the real truth of human love at the ego level, is you want the other to see you as the Great “I am”. Right?
And then of course, that stops after a while and you are a real jerk, and then it turns into an opposite kind of projection. So you cannot demand to be the Great “I am”, without really being the “I am”. And that “I am” will then emanate its love in every situation, and is not going to create bonds of attachment to any particular being, it’s going to emanate to everyone like the sun shines to all beings on the earth—it doesn’t choose certain ones.
In the same way, the Sun of Consciousness must shine without any conditionality, and it’s in that state that the perfection of our being becomes manifest, but it may be that there’s a process because the ego first of all can’t love anyone, doesn’t love its own bodily manifestation. It usually doesn’t love others, even though there may be infatuations and desires and that kind of thing, but love is the purity of the “I am”. And the ego is always a defilement of that, and because there is a sense of lack that comes with an ego identification, that lack then gets interposed into the energy-field of any relationship.
So the lack, which is a black hole that is really non-existent, that is the corpus of maya, that becomes the ping-pong ball that is batted back and forth in most relationships, but there can’t be anyone left holding or being scapegoated, by holding the ball of lack. And that’s usually what every family system does. So we want to make sure that a sangha is a healthy family system, in which there are no scapegoats, there is no lack, there is no one who feels not entitled to resonate at the level of the Pure “I am”.
And in that, all will be empowered from within, to be free of whatever demons have been lurking in their minds that were usually put into their minds in childhood because of an unhealthy family system, and the fear of being attacked by unhealthy people who may have had very perverse desires or hatreds of their own children or of siblings or of other members of extended families, and have created a basis for that paranoia to then be projected into adulthood and to repeat the same traumas over and over again. But once those tendencies can be removed through the simple shining of the “I am”, and the refusal to accept demonic thoughts or affects, which is anything that is not pure love, then that love will overwhelm those incoherent mental objects and energies, and one will be able to live in peace. That’s the message of Christmas: Peace.
But that message is only given if you accept that you are the manifestation of God, who is the “I am” and then you, in that state, are able to resonate, without losing your sense of who you are, some bodily being who is either in danger or who is not able to relate to others because in some way they are either dangerous or perhaps too desirous or too territorial or conflictive, but once you are in the “I am” then there are no conflicts.
And if anyone else is in conflict its none of your business and won’t bother you. Your energy field won’t take it in, and they will be transformed by the more coherent message of love that is put out when you’re in this state. So it’s a very simple antidote to suffering. But we don’t need to make it into some ritual, and we don’t need to limit it to one day of the year, and we don’t need to think it’s any relation to the solstice or anything else. It has nothing to do with the astrological conditions or psychological conditions or any other conditions.
You are unconditionally the “I am”, no matter how screwed up your ego is, you’re not your ego and so just by dropping it by that decision you are free. So why not be liberated now? Why take the long arduous task? Ahhh, work through this neurosis, and then that one, and then that one.. that’s going to take you years! And then you’re going to get the neurotic tendencies from past lives that are going to come up.. you’re gonna say “Oh my God.. why did I even start this? I’m worse off than when I began!” You don’t need all of that, just go to the Source, and Be, and shine, and be done with it all. That’s my advice anyhow. Nobody takes my advice, so it doesn’t matter, but you could, you know? So.. and maybe you want to on this Christmas, and stop suffering.
How many people want to stop suffering? Yeah? OK! Will you just be the “I am” that you already are? Already, now? Yes? Take that medicine, and you’ll be done. You won’t have to see Yogi Raj, you won’t have to be in first aid, you won’t have symptoms, you won’t need sessions… hey! So please take my advice, let me retire.. and then everyone here will be in a state of bliss, OK? That’s what we really are here to share. So that’s my prescription for a merry Christmas.