Empowered Places and Things > Introduction > Principle of Empowerment

The Principle of Empowerment in Adidam

Leroy Stilwell and Laura deBaun

Leroy Stilwell has been a devotee of Adi Da Samraj since 1976. He is one of the founders of this website. You can read his biographical information in the About Us section.

Laura deBaun has been a devotee since the early 1980's. She is a marriage and family therapist. Her principal services in Adidam includes caring for Holy Sites at The Mountain Of Attention Sanctuary.

Leroy Stilwell and Laura deBaunBecause Avatar Adi Da is the literal non-separate embodiment of Self-Radiant Conscious Light that Is the Source and Substance and Being of manifest existence itself, He, His bodily human form, is the principal vehicle or means of the communication of That. This is a fundamental principle of Adidam, and this is always the case. Avatar Adi Da in His Human Form is therefore the Principal Empowered “Object” in Adidam.

Avatar Adi Da has also stated that, after His bodily manifestation, the principal vehicles for the extension of His Inherent Transcendental Spiritual Power are His written Word, His Empowered Hermitages and Sanctuaries (and the many Holy Sites on them), and His Image Art. He refers to these as “Agency.” People, not only devotees, experience this “Agency” in many ways. Adi Da speaks of His Transcendental Spiritual Transmission as “Reality Revealing Itself”. Thus, His essential communication via His Person and Agency is the present Radical Realization of non-difference. However, until one is capable of that Perfect Realization, one principally perceives its effects (in the body-mind and in the world), rather than being moved to the utter ecstasy of Being in undifferentiated Identification with Conscious Love-Bliss-Light Itself. Thus, in Adidam, when we speak of an “empowered” place or object, we mean a place or object that literally serves to contain Adi Da’s Tangible, Transcendental, Spiritual Force. And by this we mean not merely the felt Spiritual Power or Force that can generate yogic or mystical experience in the human body-mind, but that Transcendental Force of Transmission that conforms the being to Reality Itself, that when related to rightly dissolves the illusion of separate self.

One of us (Leroy) once told Avatar Adi Da about a visit a then well-known monk of another religion had made to the Mountain Of Attention Sanctuary in Northern California. This monk was, in his own right, a great and exceptional man and was highly respected. He was very devout and humble — a true contemplative renunciate. He was especially noted for his lifetime of integrating in his own practice the tenents of both Christianity and Hinduism. He had dedicated his life to mutual religious understanding and tolerance and had written many books about this. I shall refer to him as Father M.

It was January or February of 1987, during the period now known as The Indoor Yajna. Our consideration with Adi Da this evening was about the seven stages of life and the different modes and degrees of Spiritual Realization. It was in that context that I remembered the following story. In the late 70’s, Father M. was our guest, staying in the special guesthouse adjacent to the Sanctuary. He was attended by one of his younger student monks. This young monk was American by nationality. When it was time to show our guests around the Sanctuary, Father M. did not allow the young monk participate. The young monk seemed to be bit offended by this. On the tour, Father M. was very respectful of everything about the Sanctuary and seemed to be sensitive to its Spiritual qualities as he was shown the various Holy Sites and Temples. When everyone was back together again, the young monk said to Father M., “Why wouldn’t you let me accompany you on the Sanctuary? Isn’t it a place meant to be open to everyone to receive its Blessing?” The query about Blessing was posed to both Father M. and the devotee host. Just as the devotee host was about to say something, Father M. spoke up and simply said, “It's not that kind of place.”

As devotees of Adi Da, what we understood about Father M.'s statement, and what we have learned both through experience (and traditional study) and Adi Da’s Instruction, is that one has to be rightly prepared to enter a Spiritually Empowered Holy Place. An empowered Holy Place is not a place where one goes to receive something, rather, where one goes to surrender everything. One has to understand this relationship. One enters into living relationship with the Spirit, or the Spiritual Person of the Divine when one enters into such an Empowered Place. Yes, there is Great Blessing to be received via a Spiritually Empowered Holy Site or Temple, but only if you are capable of being responsible for that Gift through your surrender. Also, because it is a living relationship, the Site is also affected by the person entering it.

It seemed to us that Father M. did not feel that this young monk sufficiently understood or was sensitive to the Spiritual nature of the Sanctuary or its Holy Sites and Temples.

Now, one of the reasons I was telling Adi Da this story was that I felt it as a way of praising Him, via the respect that Father M. showed for Adi Da's Sanctuary and for Adi Da as the Spiritual Presence there. I felt that Father M. was expressing a genuine recognition of Him. However, just as I was finishing the story and repeating Father M’s comment to the young monk, “It’s not that kind of place,” Avatar Adi Da looked up from His chair and tilted His head back as if about to call out to someone who is far far away (He may have even cupped His hands around His mouth like a megaphone), and bellowed out, “It’s not that kind of place, Father M.!”

Exactly! Avatar Adi Da had stopped me in my tracks! He was correcting my own misunderstanding of His Sanctuary and His Holy Sites and His Transcendental Spiritual Transmission. Yes, Father M. was respectful, good, sensitive, but in his occupation (and philosophy) within the devotional (Christian and Hindu) practice in relation to the Spirit (or Shakti) he had not been aware of the Radical Nature of Avatar Adi Da’s Transcendental Spiritual Force: the utter Awakening beyond and prior to self. In the language of the evening’s consideration with Adi Da, Father M. was a genuine and profound Spiritual practitioner, a truly saintly man in Spiritual relationship and devotional service to his God, but the Person of Avatar Adi Da and His Agencies are the means for the Transmission of, or Radical Awakening to, Reality Itself, prior to all difference, all separation, all presumption of self and other, even of self and God.

The Principle of Empowerment, then, is a Principle of relationship whereby and through Which one is drawn beyond what one cannot do for one's self, beyond the presumption and enactment of separation, into the Reality, Condition, and Truth that is always already prior, and inherently simply so.



Quotations from and/or photographs of Avatar Adi Da Samraj used by permission of the copyright owner:
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