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End of the Experiment

December 11, 2013

parrinibbana

“All fabrications are subject to cessation.” — Mahā-parinibbāna Sutta

All things that have a beginning also have an end. This blog began about a year ago, in the aftermath of the spectacular failure of the spiritual community I founded as a Vedic guru, as a chronicle of my research into integrity and leadership. It morphed into an existential examination of the human condition based on phenomenological observation and ontological analysis. It finally settled into a narrative of my inner journey from theistic tradition to radical direct realization of the teaching of the Buddha.

I made a sustained effort to describe my realizations as I researched each important component of the Buddha’s teaching. That covered a lot of ground. I supplemented the essays posted here with podcast discussions and video tutorials. I tried my best to make the material accessible to intelligent westerners. I even started a separate blog (now closed) of intimate Q&A sessions with my Mentor, a fully self-realized monk.

Unfortunately, there was very little in the way of appropriate responses. Only one or two readers provided useful feedback or relevant discussion. Other western monks have been very critical of my work. Only my teachers really support it. Given the hostile response from the western monastics, I am very glad that I protected the identity of my teachers, monastery and lineage from the start. I certainly would not want them to experience censure or trouble on my account.

Anyone who enjoys this blog should understand from the attitudes of western monks toward this work that even Theravāda Buddhism is not without sectarian envy and partisan politics. It is not free from sociopathic attempts to denigrate deep thinkers and usurp individual efforts to attain higher stages of enlightenment. As in other spiritual communities, there are organized efforts by outside agencies to thwart exceptional individuals from receiving due regard and install showbottle ‘authorities’ who divert sincere inquiry and interest in the Buddha’s teaching into superficial doctrinal wrangling.

Considering all the above, and the general climate of fear now that the pervasiveness of online spying has been revealed, I think it is appropriate to bring this experiment to an end. I have done my best to fulfill my ethical obligation to society at large to document my transformation, report on my experience and share my conclusions. I have done this with as much honesty and integrity as I can muster; if some people don’t like it, I don’t think it’s my problem. But I have lost my taste for publicly sharing so deeply.

It’s time to move on, both to a more secluded location and into a different orientation towards my teaching work. I will step aside, adopt a more background supporting role, and let others take credit for being on the front lines. My natural inclination is to live a contemplative life of quiet and solitude, free from the inevitable harsh politics of public teaching and the disturbance of contact with the puthujjana mentality. But I had something valuable and important to say. Now that I’ve said it, it’s time to let someone else be the hero and deal with the inevitable flack.

Inevitably, a few will be disappointed; but I think in a larger sense, no one will miss me. That’s fine, since my aim in life is to disappear into nibbāna anyway. I will leave this blog online, accessible to search engines, as a legominism for future pilgrims on the same path. Good luck; may the Triple Gem bless you.

aya buwan • budu saranai • namo buddhāya

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