Spiritual Recognition of Adi Da

Adi Da as
"First, Last, and Only Seventh Stage Adept",
"Promised God-Man", and
"Divine World-Teacher"

This section is organized as follows:

Introduction to the matter of Spiritual Recognition

Who is Adi Da? In His Talks and Writings over the years, Adi Da has used various phrases to suggest something about Who He is in spiritual terms, and the spiritual uniqueness of His appearance here. The phrases have included: "Divine World-Teacher", "Promised God-Man", and "first, last, and only seventh stage Adept".

Not all that surprisingly, phrases like these often stir up strong reactions in people who hear them. A major reason for the reactivity is that, through no fault of our own (but also generally without our awareness or permission), those of us brought up in Western culture have been culturally programmed to have a profoundly materialistic viewpoint that automatically rejects (as nonsense) what is indicated by these phrases. If our viewpoint is materialistic, who or what Adi Da is spiritually is not really the point; our "doubt" is far broader. Anything non-material is in doubt for us . . . let alone "God", a "God-Man", or a "Promised God-Man"! And so a phrase like "Promised God-Man" is automatically presumed (by materialists) to be the self-promotional communication of a megalomaniac; the possibility that it could be an accurate, functional description of an extraordinarily rare event in human history isn't even considered.

In a real sense, if we are confined to the materialistic viewpoint, we cannot recognize anything genuinely spiritual, because we are spiritually "blind".[1] We can be open to the possibility of a greater-than-material Reality; we can read extensively; we can "believe" in something; but we cannot really know without spiritual sensitivity.

Unlike some traditional cultures, nothing in our cultural upbringing has trained us to be spiritually sensitive. Quite the opposite! We Westerners are trained to be exclusively interested in (and to exclusively put our attention on) the material dimension — particularly, whatever will bring us material fulfillment. Our Western culture gives us the means by which we can train our palates to recognize a fine wine; our ears to recognize a musical masterpiece; our eyes to recognize a beautiful woman or handsome man. But we are provided with no training that allows our heart to directly recognize a great Spiritual Master, or a human incarnation of the Divine.

This section explores the matter of spiritually recognizing a great Spiritual Being, by people who are not confined to the materialistic viewpoint and who do have a greater sensitivity. Fortunately for the rest of us, it is possible for those who do not have any (or much) spiritual sensitivity to develop a sensitivity to the Divine Itself through the tangible human form and Spiritual Transmission of Adi Da, as many of His devotees can attest.

To have no greater sense of Reality than the physical is to be like a trapped rat, trapped on all sides. You just cannot endure the confinement of mere mortality — your heart cannot accept it, you see. To be in that disposition, to have that sense of Reality, is obviously a disturbance. So, obviously, the human being requires a Way — not merely a way out. A way out, yes in some sense — but, for the integrity of your existence, you need direct access to the Divine, even as a matter of ordinary sanity.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj

Spiritual Recognition of Adi Da: Some Initial Stories — This article provides stories of spiritually sensitive people (from a variety of cultural traditions) who have recognized Adi Da in spiritual terms.  
Spiritual Recognition of Adi Da by the Sixteenth Karmapa

Spiritual Recognition of Adi Da by the Sixteenth Karmapa — In November 1980, two of Adi Da's devotees — James Steinberg and Craig Lesser — visited the the Sixteenth Karmapa, Ranchung Rigpa Dorje, in Boise, Idaho as Adi Da's representatives. This is the story of what happened next.

Adi Da as First, Last, and Only Seventh Stage AdeptAdi Da as First, Last, and Only Seventh Stage AdeptShortly after His Re-Awakening in September, 1970, Adi Da began a decades-long consideration (concluded finally in 1993) about whether there had been any other seventh stage Realizers among all the great Spiritual Masters throughout history. In this article, we lay out Adi Da's search for a historical precedent. This consideration would first lead Him to a greatly clarified set of criteria for assessing whether the teaching and life story of a great Realizer or Master indicated that they were in the seventh stage of life. Ultimately, it led Him to conclude that He was in fact the first such Realizer; and further, that, for functional reasons, He was the first, last, and only seventh stage Adept — His appearance and work as seventh stage Adept has opened a "hole in the universe" that now makes possible endless numbers of seventh stage Realizers.

Having laid out (in this article) Adi Da's criteria for assessing whether a Realizer is a seventh Stage Realizer or whether a seventh stage Realizer is also a seventh stage Adept, any readers of this article who fully understand these criteria can duplicate Adi Da's consideration. They can go through the thousands of Spiritual Realizers in the Great Tradition, apply these criteria to the teaching and life story of each Realizer, and confirm Adi Da's conclusions for themselves.
The Significance of Recognition in the Way of AdidamThe Significance of Recognition in the Way of Adidam — In The Aletheon, Adi Da speaks extensively of recognition of Him as the Divine Person being the key to growth in the Way of Adidam. This article explores many issues, including: recognition as a Revelation, not a belief; moments of recognition vs. the recognition capability; and the "recognition consideration" for prospective devotees, whose successful conclusion (the Revelation Itself) dissolves all questions or doubts they may have about becoming Adi Da's devotee.

Spiritual recognition of Adi Da: Stories from His devotees

Whatever any individual may ultimately think, feel, or spiritually recognize about Adi Da Samraj, the recognition that Adi Da Samraj is a uniquely powerful Spiritual Transmitter is undisputed among His devotees. It is their direct and often repeated experience, as well as the experience of many who are not Adi Da's devotees. Most people who take the time to get to know something about Adi Da also acknowledge Him to be an unequalled Spiritual Genius, both in the profundity and breadth of His Written Teaching, and in all the many other modalities through which He creatively communicates that same Message: from art to theater to social wisdom. When taken altogether, the thousands of stories of devotees’ relationship to Adi Da Samraj, weave a rich, mysterious tapestry of Who Adi Da Is, and of His Undifferentiated Unity with all beings.

A major part of Adi Da's Work with His devotees — spiritual beginners by and large — is to draw us beyond the beginning stage (of recognizing Him as a great Spiritual Transmitter) into recognition of Him in even more profound terms: as the Incarnation of the very Divine. Many of us have had glimpses of that in one or another moment, especially in Adi Da's physical Company:

Michael Shaw

I felt Beloved Adi Da's Spiritual Transmission thick in the room. I saw Him as the center of a field of visible, Love-Blissful, Conscious, breathable Light. He was simply Divine Love-Bliss. There was no longer a sense of being a separate self — just the profound peace of realizing there is nothing to seek, nowhere to go, nothing to attain. This was Reality Itself, and it was not separate from "me". I had no sense of my usual persona or contracted self. It was sort of like waiting all your life for a package to arrive, and then when it comes you aren't there — but you are so happy that you don't mind at all!

Michael Shaw

Raewyn Bowmar

I didn't have any expectations when I first saw Him. But as Avatar Adi Da walked toward His seat, I looked at Him and felt He was only Love, walking around in a human body. I began to weep and weep, because I was literally seeing the Vision of God. And I was overwhelmed with gratitude.

Raewyn Bowmar

And for a few of us, not surprisingly the most advanced practitioners, their recognition of Him as the Divine Incarnate is more profound — it is a continuous, unbroken recognition of Adi Da as the Divine in every moment, not just in a few rare moments. It also is the very basis for their more advanced practice — recognition of Adi Da as the Divine ultimately enables the recognition of everything as the Divine: the seventh stage Realization, “there is only God.”

The Qualities of the Divine Person. As Adi Da has clarified, the Divine is not merely a nebulous "soup" or abstract "ground of being"; the Divine is a tangible Person with describable qualities. And Adi Da, as human incarnation of that Divine Person, manifested those qualities in His human person and life:

Do you see the way I Am? You see My Manner, My Disposition, My Humor, My sometimes Sympathetic Sorrow, My Quickness, My Disposition to Intervene, My Gentleness, My Hardness, My Power-Foot, My Beauty-Foot? You see all these Qualities. These Are the Qualities of My Omni-Presence also, My Eternal Presence. So I am Exhibiting My Eternal Personality to you, by Showing It, in some basic terms, in your likeness, through a human Form. . . . I Am Who I Am, the Very Person. Therefore, by All I Do, by All My Appearance here, I Am Showing you the Qualities of the Divine Person. . . . And they will continue after My physical Lifetime. I will Be Present exactly as I Am now.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, Love Is How I Got To Here

Many of the stories emphasize particular qualities of the Divine Being in the human person of Adi Da. For example:

Don Webley

A conversation with Adi Da Samraj about His uniqueness as a seventh stage Adept Realizer — Don Webley was the first devotee to speak extensively to Adi Da Samraj about the Uniqueness of His Teaching and His Realization. Don recounts that 1993 conversation with Adi Da Samraj, when He openly Confirms that He is the "first, last, and only" seventh stage Adept.



Daniela Morena

The Divine Force That Brings an End To "me" — Daniela Morena: "It took me about two steps into the room. . . then IT hit me full frontal. My mind shattered. My knees gave way. My body started shaking and my teeth were clattering. What I saw was Adi Da's fiery, 'Shiva the Destroyer' Form. I was in a state of absolute Shock."


A State of Absolute Freedom — Anne Henderson: "I was sitting at the dining room table in the late morning, breathing consciously to try to relax a little bit before giving a presentation. . . Suddenly, there was what Bhagavan Adi Da would call a 'transformation of view'."
Anne Henderson
Crane Kirkbride

"And Who Is a Master?" — a conversation between Crane Kirkbride and Adi Da Samraj about the difference between the Divine Self-Realizer and God.

"Open Yourself to Become My Instrument" — a story about Adi Da Samraj talking with a devotee (also a United Nations diplomat) about His Influence in the world and His relationship to devotees (and others) who come to Him for His Blessing in their service to the world.

Adi Da Samraj: I Work on the pattern that is prior to the pattern that seems, or the pattern that is concrete at the moment. I Work on the pattern that is invisible, prior, not yet observed. And then I Breathe it down into the world. And the more people there are who know Me and know this is What I am Doing, and who enter into devotional Communion with Me, the more means I have in the concrete field.

Suffering the Pain of Mankind — a story of devotee Stanley Hastings touching Avatar Adi Da Samraj's body and being given a vision of His vulnerable non-separation from the world of universal human suffering.
Stanley Hastings

Ross Keen

Touching the Body of the Divine Being — Licensed osteopathic physician, Ross Keen, DO, describes the utterly unique experience of doing "body work" on Adi Da.
The Heart Hears and Sees the Truth — "It was beyond anything that I had ever dreamed possible. I had asked God for a teacher — and He had come Himself!"
Kevin Pinkstone

The Fulfillment of My Heart-Longing, and the Fulfillment of an Indian Prophesy — Sonia's story of becoming Adi Da's devotee, discovering genuine Spiritual Transmission and being awakened to the truth of Prior Unity by Avatar Adi Da Samraj.

Michael Shaw

The Graceful Key to Recognition of Adi Da — Moving beyond the mind and the search to "get it". From the consideration period known as "The Overnight Revelation of Conscious Light."

The Secret of the "Who" of the Divine Person — Leroy Stilwell's story and conversation with Adi Da Samraj about the experience of the "Divine Person."
Leroy Stilwell

George Greer

He Is Certainly the First — an approach to Adi Da by engineering psychologist and devotee, George Greer.

Reality as Happiness as Avatar Adi Da Samraj — an account by Kathleen Ewart of recognizing Avatar Adi Da Samraj as all-pervading Happiness.
Kathleen Ewart

Bill Dunkleberger

Avatar Adi Da's Extraordinary Connection to Events in the World — Bill Dunkelberger tells a story of Avatar Adi Da's extraordinary connection to events in the world.

Going to the Source — The story from a Chi Gong master, devotee Jane Yang, of how she came to acknowledge Avatar Adi Da Samraj as the ultimate source of power and healing central to all of Chi-Gong.

Jane Yang

Ann Rogers

The Hole in the Universe: The Sacred Empowerment of Red Sitting Man Fire Site — In 1979, Avatar Adi Da created and consecrated a holy site at the Mountain Of Attention called Red Sitting Man. It was there, in July of that year, that He Initiated devotees into sacramental worship of Him in the form of fire. Fire is one of the most powerful elemental symbols of the Divine — a sign of Spirit, Light, and purification. Ann Rogers recalls the potency of the occasion in initiating her recognition of Avatar Adi Da as the Divine Person.

Extraordinary Eyes — Emily Grinnell describes how Adi Da used the circumstance of His own dancing to reveal Himself as the Divine Person to her.

Emily Grinnell

Ashoka Dhar

I Felt Adi Da's Divine Power Immediately — Ashoka Dhar is India's first female dhrupad singer. She describes her spiritual recognition of Adi Da Samraj and her visits to Naitauba to sing for Him.


Recognition of the Master — Victor Lagasse: "I saw Bubba alternatively become Swami Nityananda, Swami Muktananda, and Ramana Maharshi. ... I remember feeling very deeply that this was a relationship that had gone on for aeons of time. He had been my Master, and I his devotee for aeons of time."

Victor Lagasse


A Spontaneous Gesture of Heart-Recognition of Adi Da — From an 18-month old child, demonstrating that recognition of Adi Da is not limited by age, and doesn't require a conceptual mind.


He is Here! — After years of searching and practicing world religions, Dennis Coccaro discovered Adi Da Samraj when he heard a radio broadcast-interview which featured some of Adi Da's early devotees. Dennis describes an occasion where Adi Da self-evidently manifested His Divinity to Dennis.

Dennis Coccaro

Donald Webley

Beyond All Doubt — Donald Webley: "I saw, in person, the living demonstration of that for which I had longed all my life. . . . Ever since then, I can freely confess from my own experience that the Divine Being, the inmost Heart of all beings and of all manifestation, does exist, and was, beyond all comprehension, and human understanding, shown alive in the Person of Avatar Adi Da Samraj. That certainty was imparted directly to my heart, beyond the possibility of doubt."


No Feeling Feels Like Adi Da — Devotee Michael Gabriele describes why he loves Adi Da with all his heart and has faith in Him.

Michael Gabriele
    The Secret — Timothy describes a secret he wants to share with everyone.    

Catherine Dames

I Knew He Was the Divine Being in Human Bodily Form — Catherine Dames: "At a certain point into the video I felt a strange but very pleasant feeling between my eyebrows, as if an electric charge was plugged into that spot. When I looked at the Guru, I felt completely overwhelmed with Joy. His bodily expression of total Happiness and Freedom were such as I had never seen before in any man or woman."


God In Person Was Loving Me — Nahshon Nahumi: "Suddenly, there was no limitation, no self-contraction — only Divine Freedom. . . I felt like God in Person was loving me. I tacitly knew that Avatar Adi Da was my Master and had been my Master before all time. His Presence was so familiar and so personal that there was no way I could deny it. I felt liberated from the seeking and dilemma of my life and reunited with my Beloved. And I knew that this moment was the true beginning of my Spiritual life."

Nahshon Nahumi

Daniela Morena

He Is the Heart, Infinite and Blissful — Daniela Morena: "As I focused on the right side of the heart, I 'saw' a space apparently very tiny, but also limitless, which looked extremely bright. Something in me instinctively recognised it as "the heart on the right", that Adi Da had often spoken about. And there I saw, to my utter amazement, my Beloved Guru, seated in all His Glory. He was magnificent! He was Supremely Attractive. He was the Heart, Infinite and Blissful."




In a real sense, if we were "highly spiritual" — i.e., if we had Realized any of the greater-than-material dimensions of Reality — we would not have been born here in the first place! The very fact of our incarnation here in this material dimension is a reflection of where our actual "center of gravity" is (regardless of whatever spiritual aspirations we feel we may have) — with the exception of the great Spiritual Masters who deliberately make the sacrifice of incarnating here from a greater-than-material dimension, for the sake of helping us Realize what they have Realized.

Quotations from and/or photographs of Avatar Adi Da Samraj used by permission of the copyright owner:
© Copyrighted materials used with the permission of The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam Pty Ltd, as trustee for The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam. All rights reserved. None of these materials may be disseminated or otherwise used for any non-personal purpose without the prior agreement of the copyright owner. ADIDAM is a trademark of The Avataric Samrajya of Adidam Pty Ltd, as Trustee for the Avataric Samrajya of Adidam.

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