A talk by Adi Da Love-Ananda Samraj
January 6, 1996
AVATAR ADI DA SAMRAJ: Most non-human beings, you could observe, are spending a lot of time in Contemplation. Their times of non-Contemplation are associated with some kind of physical necessity. They prefer to be in a situation of not having physical obligation. Very often this is so. Then there are others that may move a lot, even the bees, for instance. They seem to be very busy, and not stopping for Contemplation much, except the queen perhaps. But the hive is a place of exaltation, extraordinary sound is in it, and nectars drunk.
They are in a Contemplative state of exaltation, constantly, while their bodies otherwise appear to be very busy, like fishes, too, and so on. You know? So either it's something like that, some profundity even though seeming to be very active, or, as in many other cases, animals, or non-humans of whatever kind, pause a lot, sit still a lot. And there's these chameleon guys. Are you all familiar with them in the kitchen there? [actually the breakfast room next to the kitchen.] They will spend huge, vast hours in a fixed position without the slightest movement - no blinking. . .
I mean, the animals or the non-humans may look to you like they don't really have much to do, what's the point, you see. They can live a whole lifetime without doing anything that you think is creative especially. They just seem to exist somehow. It doesn't look productive at all. It's extremely non-human. [mild laughter] You think, "What difference does that make? Bump it off, whatever, abuse it." [laughter]
DEVOTEE: It's just wasting its time.
AVATAR ADI DA SAMRAJ: It's not human. It's sub-existing, you know. It's not a person. It's not aware. It's just a thing.
Human beings propagandize themselves to the point where they don't have to be sensitive to where they are or what its laws are, what's really happening there. Human beings dehumanize one another. They select some group to hate, and "We're the good guys, you're the bad guys" -- they do all this kind of stuff all the time. Well, they do the same thing with the non-humans. You're desensitized to the point where you can treat them like they're just stuff. You know, so what does a chameleon do that makes any difference? Why "chameleon" it then, you know? It doesn't seem like it has any real purpose to the human view often, it seems.
But these are the true odalisques, all around you. Look at the trees odalisquing. They handle their business in an elegant and very slow manner. [soft laughter] And they stand there in constant Contemplation, full conductivity -- unless you abuse them, or they get interfered with somehow. . .
So what do you think about the non-humans, then, now that we've talked about it some? Right now in the outback in Australia, aborigines, so-called aborigines, are sitting around fires or just sitting out on the ground somewhere. And among the things they look to observe are the non-humans in their movements about, and the whole non-human process - the weather, the sky, the stars, everything, observed in a rather Contemplative disposition of openness altogether.
Among those people, like among the Native American Indians, it is not merely believed in some heady sense, but presumed that the non-humans are a unique display of what is beyond the human - and are not lesser at all. They are a unique sign, something to notice very profoundly, and to learn from and so on. There is also the presumption that for the humans to survive they have to sometimes kill animals or whatever for food. But even that is done in a sacred disposition - not maliciously, but with respect and an acknowledgment of necessity, with regret and asking for apology and expressing good will and blessing. Something of that is in it all.
But apart from the eatings of the non-humans, those peoples do spend a lot of time observing them, noticing all kinds of things about them, including their survival abilities and whatnot. But beyond that, they are viewed as direct spirit-forms, with something instructive about them and a kind of power even to become intimate with. Such peoples do a kind of samyama (consideration), then, on animals. They Contemplate them to the point of achievement of sometimes remarkable states and so on.
We were just talking about the non-humans here in a somewhat different fashion, perhaps, in terms of them being signs of Divine Awareness, not just representations of the invisible world and so on -- here to help humans or to be of use to them, perhaps, somehow. Divinely Awake, in profound Contemplation -- not merely of the dream world -- beyond self, forgetting the body-mind, profound Contemplatives. So that's what we were talking about. But it still would require the same thing of you basically that was done long ago and still. You have to allow yourself to become sensitive to everything, everyone, and realize that everyone is a one, not just the humans. In their presumption they are, certainly, as alive and conscious as you, just as self-aware in every fundamental sense. They get afraid in their bodies when threatened, like you do. And, therefore, they are urgent with Contemplation. They are not over-busy; or if they are busy, they're intoxicated somehow by their song with one another, or whatever it may be -- for example the bees, and so on.
So they exercise the capability of Divine Contemplation. They also experience psychic dimension things and so forth -- what you might call dream-world awareness. They wake, they sleep, they dream, and they Contemplate, by relinquishing self-regard, and even awareness relative to the body. So they go in some protected spot, and check it out, and then zone out. And yet remarkably they retain the ability to [snaps His fingers] in an instant, react if their territory is interfered with or encroached upon. But given the opportunity again, you know... they don't want to fight all day.
A lot of animals even have mock fights - like deer and such. With their great antlers they have these fights, in which there is no intention whatsoever to do anybody any harm and such. Some kind of rules they've worked out about when you say you're beaten and who you acknowledge to have won, but there's never any intention for them to kill one another or anything in those game-battles.
So they always move to return to free Contemplation and prefer to be as un-busy as possible. And it's not just because they just want to lie around and relax. They forget body-consciousness, self-consciousness, and enter into Contemplation. They do this rather readily. Of course, they can be interfered with like human beings can, and have a lot of trouble from human beings and the effects of human beings. And there's even a lot of trouble in the natural world, too, that they have to be wary of.
GLOSSARY OF TERMS USED IN THIS TALK (use if you feel necessary and as you wish):
O`da`lisque' The word odalisque comes from a Turkish root which means "concubine" and was used to describe the women in the harem of a Mogul emperor who luxuriated in the sensuous "Pleasure Dome" of their sultan. All of their needs were cared for and their only responsibility was to live in pleasure and bring such enjoyment to others. Adi Da Samraj uses this word frequently as a metaphor for the blissful Contemplation of non-humans.
Adi Da Samraj: So they always move to return to free Contemplation and prefer to be as un-busy as possible. And it's not just because they just want to lie around and relax. They forget body-consciousness, self-consciousness, and enter into Divine Contemplation.
Conductivity is a term that Adi Da Samraj generally uses to describe the process in which the human body-mind is aligned and submitted to the all-pervading natural life-energy, through a variety of practical and cultural disciplines. In the talk, A Contemplative State of Exaltation, Adi Da uses the term in a looser sense to describe the same alignment and submission to the all-pervading natural life-energy in plants and places as well as in animals. Redwood trees, for example, Adi Da has described as huge energy systems, with a balance of ascending and descending energies in constant circulation.
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