The Zen trained Adyashanti had this to say about 'enlightenment success': 'When I looked around at the Buddhist tradition, I realized that the success rate was terrible. People were in it for enlightenment, but very few were actually getting enlightened. If this were a business, I thought, we'd be bankrupt.'
'I think it's unfortunate that a person can spend hour after hour, day after day, year after year, dedicating his life to enlightenment, and yet the very notion that anybody attains enlightenment is a taboo. We're all going after this; but God forbid somebody says they've realized it. We don't believe them, we're cynical, we have doubt; we go immediately into a semi- (or overt) attack mode. To me, it highlights the fact that people are chasing an awakening they don't believe could happen to them. That's a barrier, and the biggest one... And when people have breakthroughs and talk about them in public, awakening loses its mystique. Everyone else can see that it's not just special people who have deep awakenings, it's their neighbor or their best friend.' The TMO seemed to do pretty well for a while selling something nobody seems to have found. Perhaps one reason for this is the ideas we have in our heads about what enlightenment is supposed to be. The usual ideas about what enlightenment is, are something out of a comic book, something fantastical. Maybe it is something not quite so interesting to talk about, something so familiar that you discount it entirely. ---In FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com, <sharelong60@...> wrote : MJ, speak for yourself! I was never chasing enlightenment. I simply wanted to fulfill my desires. From: "Michael Jackson mjackson74@... [FairfieldLife]" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> To: "FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 1:29 PM Subject: Re: [FairfieldLife] Most Absurd Rumor And yet from the very beginning of the Movement till about the 1980's enlightenment was what we were all chasing and what Marshy emphasized over and over. Till it became obvious that no one was getting enlightened even with the 10,000 times more powerful than TM TMSP program so he switched to world peace. From: "Share Long sharelong60@... [FairfieldLife]" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> To: "FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 2:26 PM Subject: Re: [FairfieldLife] Most Absurd Rumor First of all, I'm familiar with spiritual groups who proclaim people enlightened. I didn't always agree with their proclamations! And as mentioned, I know of a group who gives certificates of enlightenment. Maybe they use different criteria than me! I also know people in the TMO who I think are pretty darn enlightened. But of course they don't proclaim themselves as such. The whole thing is such a hodge podge that I simply ignore all the posturing and go by my own sense of a person. And actually, it doesn't matter to me whether or not they're "enlightened." There are other qualities that I value more. From: "TurquoiseBee turquoiseb@... [FairfieldLife]" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> To: "FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> Sent: Tuesday, November 18, 2014 12:06 PM Subject: Re: [FairfieldLife] Most Absurd Rumor From: "Bhairitu noozguru@... [FairfieldLife]" On 11/18/2014 09:17 AM, TurquoiseBee turquoiseb@... mailto:turquoiseb@... [FairfieldLife] wrote: From: "Bhairitu noozguru@... mailto:noozguru@... [FairfieldLife]" <FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com> mailto:FairfieldLife@yahoogroups.com On 11/18/2014 04:26 AM, TurquoiseBee turquoiseb@... mailto:turquoiseb@... [FairfieldLife] wrote: It's not so much a rumor, more of a sales pitch or claim, but I've always gotten a chuckle from "TM is the fastest path to enlightenment on the planet," coming from an organization that in over 50 years has been unable to produce even a single person they can point at and say, "This person is enlightened, and got that way as a result of practicing TM." What organization does? Just to make a point about the kinds of bullshit humans are willing to accept, think about the TM sales pitch for enlightenment, compared to almost anything else being sold on this planet: -- "So, that's your introductory lecture. Just sign here, pay us your $75, and we promise you that you will be fully enlightened in five years." (Please note that this actually *happened* with the TM movement.) -- "Sounds good, but looking into my crystal ball that shows me the future, I can see that what you're trying to sell me isn't going to cost me only $75, but tens of thousands of dollars over 30 or 40 years, to pay for all the extra courses and 'add-ons' you'll try to sell me. What can you show me to convince me that this 'enlightenment' you're trying to sell me will actually occur, and that if it does, it's worth it? -- "Well, you just have to trust us. Give us your money now, and in 5 to 8 years (ooops, sorry about that) you'll be enlightened. And you've heard the lectures -- when you're enlightened, you'll be able to know everything and have everything you want just by wanting it. Isn't that worth the hundreds of thousands of dollars (ooops again) you'll wind up paying us?" -- "It *might* be worth it, but what can you show me to prove to me that this 'enlightenment' you're selling me actually exists? For example, there are many people here in the room today who have been practicing TM for more than 8 years, the maximum time you say it will take to become enlightened. Point out the ones who are enlightened, and let me talk to them to figure out if this is all going to be worth it." -- "Sorry. <insert reverential tone of bullshit here> 'We don't talk about our individual state of consciousness.'" -- "WTF? So you're saying that I just have to TRUST you about all this enlightenment stuff, and you are NEVER going to show me anyone who you can guarantee has achieved it?" -- "That's right." -- "You DO know that this is insane, right? Promising the 'fastest path' to something you'll later refuse to ever produce?" -- "You think WE'RE insane? Talk to the millions of people who bought this exact sales pitch hook, line, and sinker." :-) It's a "path to enlightenment" but my point was that no organization I know of guarantees it. You can't. It even goes against TM teaching because one's progress is dependent on the state of their nervous system. And by no means would it be the fastest. It really is just a meditation for the masses. It's nothing special other than it was probably better organized than some of the other front runners. Bhairitu, it's not "guaranteeing enlightenment" that I'm riffing on for hopefully humorous purposes. It's the promising it for 50 years and never *producing* it I'm riffing on. That, and the fact that they got away with it because their clientele was too stupid to ever say, "Now wait a minute...where are all these enlightened people you promised me I'd be surrounded by and be one of? Point them out to me. Show me an enlightened person." Someone saying that -- *anyone* saying that -- would have been the counterpart of the line in the fairy tale that goes, "Uh, guys...you *have* noticed that the Emperor has no clothes on, right?" Asked to put up or shut up and actually *produce* a "certified TM enlightened person," the TMO wouldn't have been able to do so. It's all a house of cards perpetuated by the fact that no one ever says, "Show me an enlightened person."