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   “Forsake me not, O God, in mine old age, when I am gray-headed, until I have showed Thy strength unto this generation, and Thy power to all them that are yet to come.” - Psalm 71

   “He who has attuned himself to the Lord, even for a moment, has not wasted his life.” - Adi Granth

   “In the first place it should be known that if anyone is seeking God, the Beloved is seeking that person much more.” - St. John of the Cross (The Living Flame of Love)

   "The time is not distant; it is near, it is even at hand; let us hasten to anticipate it; let us love that eternal beauty which never grows old, and which preserves in endless youth those who love naught but it.” - Fenelon

   “It is an ancient error which makes unimportant the strivings for moral virtue provided they are replaced by strivings for ultimate knowledge.” - Paul Brunton

   “Every sage leaves a rich legacy behind, to help us reach the Truth. It is as a result of that legacy that we have been able to meet here today. We are ungrateful wretches if we do not recognize it.” - Shri Atmananda Krishnamenon

   The following material addresses topics that are of varying degrees of difficulty. Articles, including those in the Biographies and Awakening Accounts section, attempt to be thematic on various aspects of the spiritual quest (patience, perseverance, uncertainty, doubt, faith, hope, endurance, purification, grace, intelligence), different schools of practice (Buddhism, Islam, Christianity, Sant Mat, etc.), and other assorted topics (the enigma of man, the dark night of the soul, death and dying) with frequent, yet not exclusive, reference to the work of various spiritual Masters, teachers and directors, most especially Sant Kirpal Singh, Anthony Damiani and Paul Brunton, as well as that of many spiritual friends and writers, both past and present. I offer these writings as a garland of flowers to my primary master Sant Kirpal Singh, who gave me freedom and life.

   Effort has been made to be exhaustive as much as possible in order to summarize many ideas, paths, and teachings. These are generally for the serious student with some background in philosophical matters. Articles are continually being revised so please visit them again. They contain ideas found uniquely valuable or meaningful to the writer and his own study, and are offered freely for the reader's personal, exploratory consideration. They are not listed strictly in any order, but, where possible, thematically similar articles are grouped together. As many diverse teachings, including modern presentations of non-duality, are increasingly populating the spiritual airwaves, my apparently chosen personal task with many of these essays could be considered "tying up loose ends" of spiritual philosophies and paths. But, in the end, these articles are exercises in my own self-inquiry, contemplation, and ongoing investigation, and the reader might do well to consider them in this light, rather than as attempts to explain what is with authority. Furthermore, recognizing his limitations, the author throws himself upon grace, with the understanding and assurance that

   “He does not need to be conscious of a clearly defined mission before he sets about doing something for the enlightenment of others. There is always some means open to him, some little thing he can do to make this knowledge available or to set an example of right living.” - Paul Brunton (Notebooks, Vol. 16, Part 1, 4.140)

   “An intense student may be endowed with the slenderest of good qualities, but if he can readily understand the truth - however theoretically - and expound it to others, this act of exposition will help him to become himself imbued with those ideas and his own mind will soak in their truth. This in the end will lead him to actualize the Divinity within himself.” - Tripura

   Some words for consideration

   “If we are not careful the acquisition of knowledge will so occupy this life that we shall need another life to practice! We are in danger of believing ourselves advanced towards perfection in proportion to our knowledge of the way, but all our beautiful theories, far from assisting in the death of self, only serve to nourish the life of Adam in us by a secret delight and confidence in our illumination. Be quit then of all trust in your own power and in your own knowledge of the way, and you will make a great stride towards perfection.” - Fenelon

   "The glory of man (manas) is that he is the thinking being." - Hindu tradition

   "Everyday, what you choose, what you think, and what you do is who you become." - Heraclitus

   "Hafiz, there is no one in this world who is not looking for God. Everyone is trudging along with as much dignity, courage and style as they possibly can." - Hafiz

   “ It is proclaimed by all great men that one should not discourage an aspirant from following any path, unless one has something higher and easier to offer him. Therefore, no true shastra discourages the pursuit of any path, even if it only serves as a good preparation course...Every path has some nugget of Truth in it.” - Shri Atmananda

   "The days when he could speak glibly and assuredly on the most recondite phases of spirituality gradually go. A new humility comes to him..." - Paul Brunton

   “One man says this, another man says that. O mother, pray, tell me, what Truth is.” - Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa

   And furthermore, the reader is also asked to ponder this warning from Michael Molinos, author of The Spiritual Guide (1675):

   "It is impossible to write a book that pleases everyone, and it is impossible to write a book that everyone understands. The question is, "what will be the book's relationship to you?" The subject covered herein is mysterious and not easily grasped. Such a book carries, therefore, a high vulnerability to criticism. But if you cannot understand the book, how can you censor it?"

   Further Introductory comments

   “There is a way suited to the particular individuality of each separate person, which will bring out all his spiritual possibilities as no other way can...It is misleading to pick out any one way to the Overself and label it the best, or worse still, the only way. It is unfair to compare the merits of different ways. For the truth is that firstly each has a contribution to make, and finally each individual aspirant has his own special way...It is a common error, among the pious and even among the mystics, to believe that one path alone - theirs - is the best. This may be quite correct in the case of each person, but it may not necessarily be correct for others, and even then it is only correct for a period or at most a number of lifetimes...We hypnotize the mind with ideas that may suit other persons but are unsuitable for us, we practice techniques that warp our development, we follow teachers which know only the way they have themselves walked and who insist on crowding all seekers on it regardless of suitabilities and we join groups which obstruct our special line of spiritual growth...Again and again one observes that the technique, exercise, method or rule which bring good results for one person fails to do so for another. It is absurd to make a single uniform prescription and expect all persons to get a single uniform result from it.”

   “However different personal reactions will necessarily be with every individual seeker, there will still remain certain experiences, requirements and conditions - and these are the most important ones - along his path which must be the same for every other seeker too...Each man’s approach must inevitably be individualistic yet each will also share in common all the essentials which constitute the Quest...Whether he seek the Christian Salvation or the Japanese Satori, the fundamental approach is more or less the same.”
(The Notebooks of Paul Brunton, V.2, chapter 5)

   Inclusion of material by other authors does not necessarily imply endorsement of any group, organization, or even point of view mentioned. This website is for educational purposes only. Fair Use of Quotations: "Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976 allowance is made for fair use for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research..." Please enjoy reading, and thank you for visiting.


   A word on footnotes

   As these articles in many instances were written over periods of time, and not with the rigorous standards for publication, it was not often convenient to re-number all footnotes every time a change or addition was made, so instead of a nice, neat “1,2,3,4,5” listing one may find “1,2,2a, 2b, 3,4, 4a,4b,4bb, 4bbb, 5”, and so on. In many places the reference is simply given in parentheses within the text. And in some cases no reference is given at all. Even worse, from perhaps sheer laziness or fatigue some articles have no sources given, other than to a given work as a whole, thus encouraging the reader to dig deep into that material on their own. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

The Deeper Meaning of the Dark Night of the Soul The Dark Night of the Soul - Part One
Spiritual crises and breakthroughs in Western and Eastern traditions.

"God turns the heart into blood and desperate tears; then he writes the spiritual mysteries upon it." - Rumi

"The more the anguish...the more the Higher Self is squeezing the ego." - Paul Brunton
The Dark Night of the Soul - Part Two
“To be saved,” “to be enlightened,” or “to get the mind pacified” is not of primary importance. Shinran Shonin, who is respected as one of the greatest religious geniuses in Japan, once deplored, “I am unworthy of any consideration and am surely destined for hell!”....When one goes through this experience, for the first time the words of the great religious teachers are directly accepted with one’s whole heart and soul...”

'Khanti' Yoga The Path of Endurance: “Khanti” Yoga

"Such is the strange paradox of the quest that on the one hand he must foster determined self-reliance but on the other yield to a feeling of utter dependence on the higher powers.”

   - Paul Brunton


   “The child cries and [the mother] comes to give him something to eat and again goes away. Again he cries until nothing satisfies him but the mother taking him in her arms. When you want nothing else other than Him, He comes. Just as mothers always have pity, grace for the child, so it is with Master's Love. With His little thought, you weep like anything. Do you follow?” - Sant Kirpal Singh

Scrubbing Scrubbing

”The extent to which the soul is purified in its most secret recesses, is the measure of its union with the God of all holiness.” - deCaussade

Spirituality is Medicine - not Philosophy Spirituality is Medicine - not Philosophy

The church of spirituality is a hospital for sick souls. By Peter Holleran

"That which hurts, but is profitable, is drunk by the wise like medicine. For the result, afterwards attained, becomes incomparable." - Nagarjuna


Kenosis and Metanoia - Straight Talk on Emptiness Kenosis and Metanoia
Self-emptying and a change of heart: a profound transitional stage in all paths. Fear (Awe) of God followed by love of God. By Peter Holleran

“The sacrifice of God is a troubled spirit: a broken and contrite heart, O God, shalt Thou not despise.” - Ps. 51

“The Lord taketh pleasure in them that fear Him, and in those that hope in His mercy.” - Ps.147:11

Karma and Grace Karma and Grace

   "It is not within the power of man to finish either the purificatory work or its illumination-sequel: his Overself, by its action within his psyche, must bring that about. This activating power is grace." - Paul Brunton

Bedtime Stories: Are They Real? Karma and Reincarnation

“My realization is higher than the sky, But my observance of karma is finer than a grain of barley flour.”

   - Padmasambhava

Never Be Too Proud To Pray Never Be Too Proud To Pray

"Beware what you pray for. Do not ask for the truth unless you know what it means and all that it implies and nevertheless are still willing to accept it. For if it is granted to you, it will not only purge the evil out of you but later purify the egotism from your mind. Will you be able to endure this loss, which is unlikely to be a painless one?" - Paul Brunton

Shraddha “Shraddha” - Fundamental Faith and Trust

Trust or faith in God, Guru, and our true nature.

   “A thought of faith once awakened is the basis of the way forever.”

Doubt As A Doorway To The Divine Doubt As A Doorway To The Divine
Doubt as a form of grace.

"The greater the doubt, the greater the awakening; the smaller the doubt, the smaller the awakening; no doubt, no awakening.” - Zen saying

Sarmad's Renunciations Sarmad's Renunciations
     Non-dual insight, the nature of voidness, and suchness, from Sarmad and Sufism.

Why Did Sankara Speak (and Think) So Much? Why Did Sankara Speak (and Think) So Much?

On the paths of experience and the path of Identity. The role of the mind in spiritual practise.

Masters Die Many Times
Spirituality is in the sage’s blood, his life a perpetual sacrifice.

“The soul that is destined to have no other support but God himself, must pass through the strangest trials. How much agony and how many deaths must it suffer before losing the life of self.” - Pere La Combe

Kundalini: Up, Down, or ? Kundalini: Up, Down, or ?

"During my days I lay in the prison of Tihran...I felt as if something flowed from the crown of my head over my breast, even as a mighty torrent that precipitated itself upon the earth from the summit of a lofty mountain. Every limb of my body would, as a result, be set afire."
  - Baha u'llah

On Suicide and the Spiritual Quest On Suicide and the Spiritual Quest
Words on a delicate issue of profound importance.

"The fact that suicide is always possible is the starting point of any genuine metaphysical thought."
   - Gabriel Marcel

“A mad man clings to samskaras, whereas a jnani does not. That is the only difference between the two…Jnana is madness of a kind.”
   - Ramana Maharshi

The Path of Wrath The ‘Path’ of Wrath
Samrambha Yoga - the way of the Asuras.   By Peter Holleran

"You can meditate for fifteen years and get one inch closer to God; or you can be really angry and be with Him instantly."
   - Sufi proverb

The Great Uniqueness The Great Uniqueness
The sage is merged into and works for the World-Idea. Ego-I and 'I Am' become one.

“The ego to which he is so attached turns out on enquiry to be none other than the presence of the World-Mind within his own heart. If identification is then shifted by constant practice from one to the other, he has achieved the purpose of life.” - Paul Brunton

It's Not About Me It's Not About Me
Thoughts on a key insight arising in any truly liberating process

   “What he chooses at the beginning of his quest will predetermine what he will become at its end. And the choice is between self-centered escape or selfless activity.” (Paul Brunton, Vol. 2, 5:116)

   - forthcoming

Not A 'One-Shot' Not A 'One-Shot'
'Awakenings' are steps to Enlightenment. 'Enlightenments' are stages to liberation.

"The sage is the flower, the blossoming of intelligence, throughout eons of time...It is the product of nature's strivings to bring about such blossoms. It takes a long time to produce a sage."

   - Anthony Damiani

The Depths of This Thing The Depths of This Thing
Trying to say what can't be said: stages of realization, and what gets enlightened.

"The sun rises at a certain moment, and with it day breaks and all is clearly illumined; the snow and ice, however, take time to break up and melt. A baby is born at a certain moment, though it may take years to walk, talk, and help others." - Great Doubt, p. 67

After Awakening, What Next? After Awakening, What Next?
Awakening and evolution. A comparison of the teachings of Paul Brunton, Sri Aurobindo, anadi, Nisargadatta Maharaj, contemporary non-dualists, and more.

"How can a man fully express himself unless he fully develops himself? The spiritual evolution which requires him to abandon the ego runs parallel to the mental evolution which requires him to perfect it."
   -    Paul Brunton

The Geology of Realization The Geology of Realization
“Geology is the study of pressure and time. That's all it takes really, pressure, and time..."

The Long and the Short of It The Long and the Short of It
Truth is both a gradual development and a sudden attainment. A representative sampling of quotes on the "Long Path" and the "Short Path", from The Notebooks of Paul Brunton.

"No effort is needed to get hold of the Overself, but every effort is needed to get rid of the many impediments to its recognition. We cannot take hold of it; it takes hold of us. Therefore the last stage of the quest is an effortless one. We are led, as children by the hand, into the resplendent presence."

Two Sprites Two Sprites
Some seed-thoughts on worry and hurry.

"In every life we have some trouble; when you worry you make it double." - Bobby Mc Ferrin

Holy S**t! Holy S**t!
Thoughts on fertility in the darkness

The Best of J.P. deCaussade The Best of J.P. deCaussade
Words of wisdom on classic purgation and faith. Edited by Peter Holleran

"The life of faith is nothing but the continual pursuit of God through everything
that disguises, disfigures, destroys, and, so to say, annihilates him."

The Best of Francois Fenelon The Best of Francois Fenelon
Words of wisdom on faith and trust. Archbishop Fenelon, cousin of Madame Guyon. Edited by Peter Holleran.

"Then we taste, then we are fed, then we become one with the truth. We no longer see the truth as an object outsides of ourselves. The truth becomes us, and we experience it as intimately as the soul experiences itself."

The Best of Madame Guyon The Best of Madame Guyon
Subtleties on the way to God

   "The life of the believer is like a torrent making its way out of the high mountains down into the canyons and chasms of life, passing through many experiences until finally coming to the spiritual experience of death. From there, the torrent experiences resurrection and a life lived in concert with the will of God while still going through many stages of refinement. At last the torrent finds its way into the vast, unlimited sea. Even here the torrent does not totally come to be one with the vast ocean until it has once more passed through final dealings by the Lord."

Backdraft Backdraft
The fire of grace creates and fills a vacuum.

"One does not begin to know and to feel one’s spiritual miseries until they begin to be cured.” - Fenelon

Dying in the Master's Company Dying in the Master's Company
The graceful passing of Ramana Maharshi's mother and Sant Kirpal Singh's wife. The influence of a saint or jnani at the time of death. The death of a Saint. Different perspectives on dying.

" At the time of death the initiate will be as happy as a bride on her day of marriage!"   - Sant Kirpal Singh
In the Bosom of the Lord: In the Bosom of the Lord:
Death for the Unliberated
The ins and outs of the existence of consciousness after death for the as yet unliberated soul. Contrary views from Buddhism, Christianity, Sant Mat. The death process. "Pure lands". Companion article to Dying in the Master's Company.

"Death is not extinguishing the light; it is putting out the lamp because dawn has come." - Rabindranath Tagore

The Idea of Man The Idea of Man
The concept of an archetypal 'Idea of Man', as found in the work of Daskalos, theosophy, and Paul Brunton; and the notion of 'Primal Adam', or 'Perfect' or 'Heavenly' Man, in Hebrew, Islamic, Sufi, Taoist, Hindu and Buddhist traditions..

Emptiness Is 'Empty' Emptiness Is 'Empty'
Companion piece to 'Maya Is 'Maya'. A discussion of the shunyavada or emptiness teachings of Madhyamika Buddhism, their relevance, and similarities in other traditions. How, if misunderstood, they can be a means of avoiding the human condition.

"Believers in emptiness are hopelessly incurable."
   - Nagarjuna
Maya Is 'Maya' Maya Is 'Maya'
Companion piece to 'Emptiness Is 'Empty' (read that first). An extensive discussion of the 'provisional' teachings of Maya or illusion in Hinduism, with similarities in other traditions, and why it is a bug-a-boo or outdated illusion itself!

“Alas! What a wonderful thing this veiling power is! It can even destroy the wisdom of a learned and wise man! One may be intelligent and wise, a scholar, very clever, and also adept in the vision of the exceedingly subtle Atman. In spite of these high qualifications, even a little breeze of this concealing power can destroy everything.”    - Sankara

Don't Expect To Know Don't Expect To Know
Compiled by Peter Holleran.

"Unless one becomes a six-month old baby, there is no hope for one in the realm of Self-knowledge." - Ramana Maharshi
Ignorance Ignorance
Compiled by Peter Holleran

"A dog has the soul of the philosopher."
   - Plato
Caught on the Path - the Master Trap Caught on the Path - the Master Trap
On reaching a spiritual state of helplessness and hopelessness.
Compiled by Peter Holleran.

"Dear heart, where do you find the courage to seek the Beloved when you know He has annihilated so many like you before? I do not care, said my heart, my only wish is to become one with the Beloved."
   - Rumi
Patience, Perseverance, and Good News Patience, Perseverance, and Good News
Words from the wise on important virtues. Compiled by Peter Holleran.

"Ask and ye shall receive, knock and it shall be opened unto you." - Jesus
Ennui Ennui
On boredom and the passage through the wilderness.

“But first the disciple must pass through the complexity in order to exhaust the various possibilities until the awakening of the consciousness which leads toward simplicity: would he be able to bear the intermediate phase between his dream and reality.” - de Lubicz

Goo-Goo Eyes Goo-Goo Eyes
"Tests" on the quest: humorous, painful, and informative, depending on point of view. Some adult content. Edited by Peter Holleran.

[Note: References to the masculine gender were left unchanged so as not to interrupt the flow of the text; they should, however, be read as gender neutral. Also, while the humorous links appeal most directly to the male mind, with a little imagination they can apply equally well to that of the female.]

Sant Mat: A Comparative Analysis: Part One Sant Mat Through the Heart's Gaze - 1
An exhaustive consideration in four parts: Traditional models of the path; psycho-physical anatomy; comparisons with yoga: Sivananda, Yukteswar, Yogananda, Ramakrishna; Faqir Chand's radical views; Ishwar Puri; the Master's Radiant Form; “84” steps in the pool of Amritsar in Daswan Dwar; is the experience of the inner planes the same for all? Subjectivity/objectivity. Vedanta; Ramana Maharshi; Secrets of the Path; Nirvikalpa; Sach Khand; Anami; Dissolution and Grand Dissolution; Maha Sunn/the Void.
Sant Mat: A Comparative Analysis: Part Two Sant Mat Through the Heart's Gaze - 2
A discriminating look at: Planes and Bodies; Sach Khand and Soul - are they nondual, or is only Anami or the 'One' nondual? Sant Mat versus Buddhism; More on Sant Mat and Non-Dualism; Shabd Yoga as a Jnana Path; Dissolution and Grand Dissolution; Shabda-Brahman as Liberator, not Creator: an alternate nondual view; What is Sat Purush?; Simran, Spiritual Intuition, Inner Hierarchies; After Death: What Happens.
Sant Mat: A Comparative Analysis: Part Three Sant Mat Through the Heart's Gaze - 3
For some initiates, perhaps the most relevant of the four parts. A look at self-introspection, ethics, and the keeping of a diary, from different stages of perspective/understanding; mindfulness, contemplation, and journalling; straight talk on spiritual progress: what is it?, ‘secrets’ about progress, unrecognized progress; the little mentioned topic of psycho-physical purification: Babuji Maharaj, Sri Aurobindo, Sant Darshan Singh, St. John of the Cross; the question of cultism; attitudes and preconceptions about the path; a rational consideration of nutrition, dietary accessories, and sexuality.
Sant Mat: A Comparative Analysis: Part Four Sant Mat Through the Heart's Gaze - 4
Samadhi versus Satori; Perfection/ Perfect Master, Omniscience: precisely what are they?; Advaita; Sahaj Samadhi; Liberation from the inner realms; Advantages of a Lineage; Kabir's Anurag Sagar; "Seeing" in Sach Khand; An Extensive discussion on 'Kal'; the concept of Avatars in Sant Mat; “Lineage ego”; Relative and Absolute Teachings; Divya Chakshu vs. Jnana Chakshu; Amrita Nadi; "Anubhava" vs. Samyagnana; Maha Sunn and equivalencies in other traditions; “Do Buddhists only go to the third plane as Sant Darshan Singh said?” - what is the meaning of that statement, and what it might mean even according to Buddhists!; Eradication of karmas/vasanas: Sant Mat versus vedanta; sleep; the importance of the waking state; Siddhis: acquired and innate; Sant Mat re-contexualized as a non-dual path, and not just other-worldly escape; “marked” souls; “The Fall” an outdated story and concept stigmatizing human suffering and error as “wrong.”

Scare Tactics Scare Tactics
Traditional practice motivators.

“The experience one has at the time of death is as if a thorny bush were placed inside the rectum and extracted through the mouth." - Quran

"When the soul leaves the body one feels pain as if bitten by a million scorpions at once.” - Bhagwad Purana

Tribute to a Parent's Love Tribute to a Parent's Love
Receiving and accepting the deeper truths of the heart. An audio-visual experience.
Languaging Non-Duality - Some Common Errors Languaging Non-Duality - Some Common Errors
A consideration of polarities and their misleading use in the articulation of non-dual teachings. Is truth 'timeless' ? etc.. A major discussion, not for the faint-hearted.
Non-Duality and and the Soul: Some Knotty Problems Non-Duality and and the Soul: Some Knotty Problems
A comprehensive attempt to reconcile contrary views. The teachings of Paul Brunton compared to Advaita, Buddhism, Sant Mat, Anadi, and other schools. Topics considered: realization, practice, Soul, Overself, individuality, and more. Why and how "Atman and Brahman are One" - but not the same. A four-part series.

The Primordial Ground The Primordial Ground
Is the realization of consciousness the ultimate One, or the Divine Soul? Is there an Absolute beyond consciousness? An analysis of the teachings of Atmananda, Adyashanti, and Sri Nisargadatta. The "mirror" analogy in Advaita and Dzogchen.

"Consciousness exists in awareness and awareness is the reflection of the light on the waters of existence." - Sri Nisargadatta, I AM THAT 

The Grandeur of A Sage The Grandeur of A Sage

A Plotinian view of the Godman.

“The sage unites with his soul and he's permanently soul. He can get a glimpse of the Intellectual Principle but he cannot become or be the Intellectual Principle. He must return and be soul. He will always be soul. You, I, and everyone else. So the higher glimpse is not your glimpse of the soul, but the soul's experience of the Intellectual Principle.” - Anthony Damiani

Religion Is A Disease Spirituality Is A Disease - ?
Beware of being medicalized! And other issues.... By Peter Holleran.

"Jnana is a form of madness."

   - Ramana Maharshi

"If There's a Hell Below, We're All Gonna Go" "If There's a Hell Below, We're All Gonna Go"
How could an animal ever get good enough karma to evolve into the human kingdom, and how can man evolve if he goes to hell as soon as he incarnates from the animal kingdom as a not-yet perfect human? Thoughts on Hindu cosmology and the seven nether regions.
"Resist ye not evil" "Resist ye not evil"
A brief look at three stages of spiritual approach to personal ethics and social activism.

Have You Ever Been 'Experienced'? Have You Ever Been 'Experienced'?
On the issue of drugs and spirituality.

Esoteric Climatology Esoteric Climatology
Global warming: true or false? natural or man-made? Dissecting the evidence. Conclusion: don't worry too much. And, how it relates to the solar system, the Big Bang, and metaphysical teachings.

"I'm not sure which is more arrogant - to say we cause global warming or that we can fix it."

The Greater Kingdom The Greater Kingdom
Appreciating the river of Intelligence that runs through all life.

"Nothing I say can explain to you Divine Love, Yet all of creation cannot seem to stop talking about it." - Rumi
Hellenic  Buddhism and Buddhist Christianity Hellenic Buddhism and Buddhist Christianity

Theravada Buddhist and other Indian Influences on Greek Philosophy and early Christianity, and subsequent Hellenic and Christian Influence on the Rise of Mahayana Buddhism. Also, esoteric origins of Christianity and the mystery of Christ.
The Secret Doctrine The Secret Doctrine

All you wanted to know about man's esoteric evolution but were afraid to ask. This article should help exhaust your seeking and also save you two thousand pages of reading or more.

"Nor is it, after all, necessary that anyone should believe in the Occult Sciences and the old teachings, before one knows anything or even believes in his own soul....Your experience is limited to a few thousand years, to less than a day in the whole age of humanity and to the present types of the actual continents and isles of our Fifth Race. How can you tell what will or will not be?"
     - H.P. Blavatsky
The People of the Book The People of the Book
Written several years ago, current events find it more timely than ever, and so we move it up the list. Examining the common ancestry of the Middle Eastern faiths from historical, exoteric, and esoteric levels, in an effort to promote tolerance. Also discussed, Primal Adam and earthly Adam; 'Hu-man'; 'Man-hosh' and 'behosh,' the Idea of Man.

"I dwell neither high nor low, neither in the sky nor on earth,
   nor even in paradise,
O beloved, believe me,
   strange as it may seem,
I dwell in the heart of the
   faithful and it is there
   that I may be found.”

   - Rumi
The People of the Tradition The People of the Tradition
The "Custodians of Wisdom." Esoteric origin of the world's religions.

"The soul emanates from an unchangeable and higher spiritual order as well as from a former material evolution, from an extinct solar system,” and has inhabited many other such solar systems. A visitor on this earth for evolutionary purposes, it is humanity’s destiny to evolve beyond it, beyond the moon, beyond the orbits of the outermost planets and beyond the Sun, and so return to the true home-world lying far from this solar system in the depths of the universe.” - Pythagoras
Why We Need a New Vision? Why We Need a New Vision?

Problems with traditional models of spiritual realization.

"Plotinus even delivers a warning, and he says [in The Enneads] that we must TEACH OUR SOULS....So right there he's warning us that we must have the correct doctrine, or we will misunderstand the experiences that we have...If you can ask an intelligent question, that shows that you already understand. To formulate a question precisely is already quite a feat of knowledge." - Anthony Damiani

Elvis the Bodhisattva Elvis the Bodhisattva
A look at the King of rock and roll's spiritual side.

   "All I want is to know the truth, to know and experience God. I'm a searcher, that's what I'm all about."
Elvis Was Not a Mentalist Elvis Was Not a Mentalist

Thoughts on manifestation, the "I-thought" and self-inquiry.

”His first mental act is to think himself into being. He is the maker of his own “I.” This does not mean that the ego is his own personal invention alone. The whole world-process brings everything about, including the ego and the ego’s own self-making.”   - Paul Brunton
The "Lost Years" of Ramana Maharshi The "Lost Years" of Ramana Maharshi
His two death experiences and their meaning in regards to self-realization, spiritual practice, the heart, jnana, bhakti, the World-Mind, and astrology.

" All that you can say of the Heart is that it is the very Core of your being."
BE AS YOU ARE: The Core Direct Teaching of Ramana BE AS YOU ARE: The Core Direct Teaching of Ramana
A selection from Talks with Ramana Maharshi. Compiled by Peter Holleran.

"You are always in the Heart. You are never away from it in order that you should reach it."

The Heart of the Lankavatara Sutra The Heart of the Lankavatara Sutra
The Lanka in a nutshell.

"But, if they only realised it, they are already in the Tathagata's Nirvana for, in Noble Wisdom, all things are in Nirvana from the beginning."

PB and Plotinus: The Fallacy of Divine Identity PB and Plotinus: The Fallacy of Divine Identity
Is sahaj samadhi realization of the Soul, or the One?

Dual Non-Dualism: Part One Dual Non-Dualism: Part One
"Consciousness Is Not All." A comparative overview of the teachings of anadi.

   “This vision is beyond duality and non-duality, embracing the paradoxical existence of the individual soul and her evolution within the ocean of universal intelligence."
Dual Non-Dualism: Part Two Dual Non-Dualism: Part Two
"Distinctions of Oneness." A continued look into truth 'beyond the mind.'

"We should not forget that often awakening is brought by the power of grace. In many traditions, students are supported from the esoteric dimension. That's why, even when one is doing the practice without having the full understanding but one is sincere and genuine - transformation simply does take place...Grace is the ultimate source of awakening." - anadi
Dual Non-Dualism: Part Three Dual Non-Dualism: Part Three
"I am Not THAT" - or am I? Are Atman and Brahman the same? Is there not a Soul? Is Advaita the last word?

"You must find your own way. Unless you find it yourself, it will not be your own way and will take you nowhere." - Sri Nisargadatta

Dual Non-Dualism: Part Four Dual Non-Dualism: Part Four
"Invasion of the Body Snatchers." The nature of wholeness vs. the negation of body and soul. Concluding dharma debate.

"It is not only awareness of mind and body which creates a conscious human being, but participation in them too!"
    - anadi

The Purpose of Spiritual Training The Purpose of Spiritual Training
The wisdom of Jack Nicholson.

"You can't handle the truth!"

Spiritual Implications of Brain Research Spiritual Implications of Brain Research

Brain-wave studies on TM and Buddhist meditators, Carmelite nuns, Primal Therapy patients, neurosurgical volunteers - and what it all means. Can enlightenment be proven in the laboratory? By Peter Holleran.

"There is no machine that can measure a person’s realization." - Tsoknyi Rinpoche
Teachers, or Masters, of the One? Teachers, or Masters, of the One?
***Revised 07-29-13***

"So what if you have dropped illusion?
You didn't drop your pride.
Pride has fooled the best sages,
Pride devours all."
   - Kabir, Bijak

 "Without virtue, God is only a word.”
      - Plotinus

A Brief Summary of Creation Views: A Brief Summary of Creation Views:
Five creation views, from God created the world ex nihilo to the ajata (non-causality) view of Vedanta. By Peter Holleran.
A P B ! A P B !
The sands of time. Four short pieces on aging.

"The unexamined life is not worth living."   - Socrates (470-399 BC)

"The unlived life is not worth examining."     - Socrates (b. 1949)
Greek Views on the Soul Greek Views on the Soul

On the nature of the body-mind-soul relationship. By Peter Holleran.
Casablanca Casablanca
A contemplation.
Maybe THIS Time It Is Different Maybe THIS Time It Is Different
Spiritual Revolution: the Mayan Calendar, 2012, Energy Shift, Golden Age, Brunler Scale, Morphogenic Fields, Planetary Ascension, Ashtar Command, Photon Belt, Kalki Avatar, Holographic Universe, Binary Sun, The Great Year, "Global Warming", and "Solar System Warming". Get ready, it's happening! ["For entertainment purposes only"]. Edited with commentary by Sirius.
The Dance of Dharma The Dance of Dharma
Scintillating rays from a diamond-like source open the door of freedom. By Peter Holleran.

"In whatever place you find truth, with whatever name it may be labelled, take it."
   - Paul Brunton
Mt. Tamalpais, the Sacred Mountain Mt. Tamalpais, the Sacred Mountain
Take a spirit walk on a San Francisco Bay area treasure, visted by numerous saints and sages. By Peter Holleran.
The Teachings of Don Juan

An excerpt on the four natural enemies, from Chapter 3 of The Teachings of Don  Juan, by Carlos Castaneda

Saga of the Disillusioned Seeker Saga of the Disillusioned Seeker
On how a noble soul was entranced by an enigmatic cult, struggled with the still, small voice within, was liberated from false authority, escaped the pod people, and found his way back home. Humorous and irreverant. Rated: PG-17 (some language). By "Morpheus".
"The Opening Gambits."

An imaginary conversation between contrasting points of view at Wisdom's Goldenrod Center for Philosophic Studies on the relationship between realization and transformation. By Peter Holleran.

"A truth's initial commotion is directly proportional to how deeply the lie was believed. It wasn't the world being round that agitated people, but that the world wasn't flat.When a well-packaged web of lies has been sold gradually to the masses over generations, the truth will seem utterly preposterous and its speaker a raving lunatic.”
     - Dresden James
"The Reply of Plotinus"

The debate continues.........

"The gradation of the One, the One-Many [Nous], and the One and Many [Soul] is eternally fixed, and is an expression of reality."

    - Plotinus
"The Fall from Grace"

"If there is no soul, does Buddhism then teach that death is the termination of all conscious existence? This question cannot be answered by a simple “yes” or “no”.

"Last Gasp of the Puppet People"

"None of us is thrown into this world against his will. All of us are here because we want to be here...Some are eager to descend into a body again, but others are reluctant and are half-dragged down."

    - Paul Brunton

The Mirror Analogy The Mirror Analogy
The symbol of the "mirror" in spiritual teachings. By Peter Holleran. - forthcoming
Truthfulness Truthfulness

A discussion of Sacca (truthfulness, integrity, character), the most important of the ten Buddhist paramis (perfections). By Peter Holleran.

   - forthcoming -
What Is Intelligence? What Is Intelligence?
A look at the dynamic aspect of enlightenment. By Peter Holleran.

"When intuition guides and illuminates intellect, balances and restrains the ego, that which the wise men called 'true intelligence' rises." - Paul Brunton

- forthcoming -
The Throne of God The Throne of God
The archtypal image and experience of the Throne of God in Christianity, Sufism, Buddhism, and philosophical esotericism. "Shall we gather by the River, the beautiful, the beautiful River." By Peter Holleran. - forthcoming

One-Eyed Monsters The One-Eyed Monsters
Fallacies of Absolutism, with reference to the teaching of William Samuel and others. The three stages of Zen, and how many teachers and students remain stuck in the 'mountains are no longer mountains' stage, despite argument to the contrary. 'Believing in emptiness, they fall into a self-condemned void' (Nagarjuna), often needing the resort of convoluted reasoning to justify action or purpose in a tangible world. By Peter Holleran. - forthcoming
Is "Ajatavada" Non-Dual Enough? Is "Ajatavada" Non-Dual Enough?
A look at ajatavada or non-causality, central tenet of the Mandukya Upanishad and non-dual teachings, and the suggestion of a more inclusive, 'modified' version. By Peter Holleran.

"Our position is not that we have established non-causality, it is that there is no proof of causality. There is a difference here." - V.S. Iyer

- forthcoming -
'Columbo' Yoga 'Columbo' Yoga
The need for precision in language in philosophical teaching. by Peter Holleran

"When you see two doctrines contradicting each other, it is a sure sign and warning there is a logical contradiction somewhere." - V.S. Iyer

- forthcoming -
The Ego Starts at Birth or Before - Not By Age Two The Ego Starts at Birth or Before - Not By Age Two

An investigation of a popular notion about 'personal stories' and samsara. By Peter Holleran.

- forthcoming -
Seven Fundamental Questions Seven Fundamental Questions
Who, what, where, when, how, and why am I? And, what is the world? A short essay on self-inquiry. By Peter Holleran.

- forthcoming -
It's All Too Much For Me To Take It's All Too Much For Me To Take

Subtle Dimensions: mind-bending thoughts on Holarchy and Hierarachy

   - forthcoming -
Dredging the Depths of Cyclic Existence Dredging the Depths of Cyclic Existence
The grace of the masters on a journey through the Bardos. By Peter Holleran.

- forthcoming -
The Divine Path of Growing Old The Divine Path of Growing Old
The evolutionary impulse built into the World-Idea, according to astrology and the words of sages. By Peter Holleran.

"Whereas the spiritual evolution would be implemented through the [transits of the] outer three planets - which require abandoning the ego - the rational souls from Saturn inward are demanding that the ego gets fulfilled." - Anthony Damiani

- forthcoming -
“The last lesson to learn is an ancient one: be willing to be humble. For it was refined in pitiless fire and shaped by a holy communion.” - Paul Brunton