Introduction > Adi Da as Divine Incarnation

The Offering of Perfect Happiness:
The Divine Incarnation, Life, and Work
of Avatar Adi Da Samraj

Chris Tong, Ph.D.

It is obvious, from all sorts of subtle details, that [Adi Da Samraj] knows what IT's all about . . . One who knows that he is the Godhead doesn't have to use any kind of force to be that . . . a rare being.

Alan Watts

In truth, every human heart longs to be perfectly and eternally happy. But, in a time dominated by the materialistic viewpoint, few of us even consciously aspire to Perfect Happiness, largely because we are not aware that it exists. An honest appraisal of where we spend our time (despite toying with ideas of "spirituality") reveals what we generally settle for: a dinner out with a bottle of "fine" wine; a good movie; a little "peace of mind" through meditation; a little relaxation of the body through hatha yoga.

Adi Da as Spiritual Transmitter

Throughout history, the great Spiritual Masters appear on occasion, to re-Awaken human beings to their highest destiny of Perfect and Eternal Happiness. By "great Spiritual Masters", I mean something quite specific. Search the web and you may get the sense that "spiritual teachers" are numerous and everywhere: This one teaches Tibetan Buddhism; that one offers shamanic drumming; etc. All fine and good. But the truly great Spiritual Masters are rare. They have never been merely intellectual teachers, charismatic (but otherwise ordinary) human beings, or providers of piecemeal techniques or rituals. They are always Spiritual Transmission Masters, tangibly transmitting their own Spiritual Realization to their devotees:

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

Different kinds of Spiritual Realization

Different Spiritual Masters transmit different Spiritual Realizations, corresponding to different human destinies. God-Realization Realization of Perfect, Eternal Happiness is the greatest human destiny. And those rarest Masters ("Divine Incarnations") who appear here by "crossing down" (the literal meaning of "Avatar") from the Divine Domain spontaneously transmit that Divine Reality to others:

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

Adi Da as Divine Incarnation Transmitting in our time (and eternally)

The world's traditions are replete with spiritually significant stories about great Masters like Jesus, Krishna, and Gautama Buddha. However, sorting out the historical fact from the mythical embellishment is a formidable challenge. Even if we could discover what occurred thousands of years ago (and who actually really existed), is it still of spiritual use now? Are these Masters still "Spiritually Transmitting" in the 21st century?

No Transmission comes directly from Jesus now. The link with Jesus through Baptized devotees has been broken. But many other Adepts appeared before Jesus and after Jesus, and they too have come and gone. Some precincts may exist within the Great Tradition here and there where this true spirituality is still alive it is alive in My Company.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
"A Birthday Message From Jesus and Me", The Fire Gospel

Adi Da Samraj is a Divine Incarnation who is Transmitting now.

Often, Westerners react to the notion of a "Divine Incarnation" our skepticism is born out of both the traditional Judeo-Christian notion of "God" ("How can the all-powerful God appear in limited human form?"), and our broader, materialistic doubt in the existence of anything spiritual.

Adi Da strongly critiques both God-less materialism and the notion that God is "all-powerful", the "Creator", "in charge of the universe", etc. He instead describes God as the Source: the Consciousness in whom all beings and things are appearing, as in a dream. It is possible for God to appear in the "dream" (as a "Divine Incarnation"), and for us to Awaken out of it (with the help of a Divine Incarnation); such "God-Realization" is our greatest destiny.

I am like the sunlight in the morning. I intensify the light of morning until you Awaken. Until then, you continue to dream, try to survive within the dream, pursue all kinds of goals, searches, none of which Awakens you. I, Myself, the One Who would Awaken you, am not an individual within the dream. I Am the Conscious Light, the True Divine Heart Breaking Through the force of dreaming. I Am your own Most Prior Self-Nature Appearing within the dream in order to Awaken you.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, The Gorilla Sermon
in The Ancient Walk-About Way

"Divine Incarnation" does not occur through a Divine act of will alone (since the Divine is not all-powerful in the Judeo-Christian sense). It depends on a rare and mysterious conjunction of circumstances that creates a "gateway" or "hole in the universe" for the Divine to appear here in the "dream".

The human life of a Divine Incarnation

Adi Da as a child
Adi Da as a child

Adi Da Samraj describes how the Divine Being seized upon just such a rare opportunity to incarnate in 1939 as an American named "Franklin Jones" in Long Island, New York.

I have no past lives and no future lives in any dimension. This is My only birth . . . I am before time and space . . . I have not appeared for reasons. It is only that this [body-mind] vehicle has mysteriously, paradoxically coincided with Me. Therefore, I have conformed it to Myself and come forth.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
My Devotee Always Feels Me To Be Present
in Breath and Name (1977)

Thus, Adi Da's first thirty years are the extraordinary story of the Divine progressively Enlightening "Franklin Jones", and preparing that human vehicle for the Divine Work of Enlightening all beings.

Because it is a story of Divine Descent, Adi Da's early life is a radical reversal of the storyline of the lives of traditional saints and yogis, whose spiritual attainments reach up to God in vision and mystical union, and may even ultimately attain Identification with the Transcendental Consciousness (see the left column of Figure 1), over many lifetimes of spiritual effort.

In contrast, Adi Da's early life reflects the Divine Descending into the human vessel of "Franklin Jones", and awakening the various higher centers (and their corresponding Realizations) in the reverse order from the familiar spiritual traditions (see the right column of Figure 1), at the "God Speed" of a few years.

Adi Da's Work of Divine Emergence

In September 1970, the process of Divine Acquisition reached the point where "Franklin Jones" consciously Awakened as the Divine. Almost immediately, the same Divine Process began extending Itself to all other beings:

Now. . . instead of confronting what was arising in "myself", I "meditated" other beings. I would spontaneously become aware of great numbers of people . . . and I would work with them very directly, in a subtle manner.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, The Knee Of Listening

It was as though the Divine had established a "beachhead" on Earth through "Franklin Jones", from which was launched a "campaign" ultimately capable of Awakening all beings to the Divine Identity through this same means of Divinely Emerging as them:

There is only one Divine Process in the world, and It is initiated when I [spiritually] "crash down" and "enter" My devotee. I Am the Divine in bodily form. When My devotee truly surrenders to Me, then I enter My devotee in the form of Divine Light.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, Guru Enters Devotee

My Divine Avataric Self-"Emergence" takes place not only in This Body. My Divine Avataric Self-"Emergence" takes place in your body, the bodies of My devotees, the bodies of all beings, the "world" altogether. All must "experience" My Divine Avataric Self-"Emergence", transformatively.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
"My Divine Avataric Self-Emergence Is An Event In My Divine Bright Spherical Self-Domain Of Conscious Light",
The Knee Of Listening

It has been given to me to Awaken from this terrible script. And the Way of life for man has been clarified in my heart. This dreadful destiny of recoil and self-possession must be transcended. Every tradition of "Narcissus" must be overlooked. We must be re-established in the native equanimity of fearless birth. This is the secret: we are a Universal Divine Incarnation.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
Scientific Proof of the Existence of God
Will Soon Be Announced by the White House!

During the time of His Work with devotees from 1972 to 2008, Adi Da fully developed the Transcendental Spiritual Way of Adidam, in which devotees "link up" with this Process of Divine Emergence. That Divine Process distinguishes Adidam from other traditions. Conventional meditation, astral projection, and other aspects of "New Age spirituality" work by stimulating specific "higher" centers of human anatomy. The Way of Adidam places no ultimate value on such "higher" experiences. The same limited ego experiences them, and is not set eternally free by them. Instead, the Way of Adidam is about surrendering the whole body (and all of its centers, higher and lower) to the Divine, to the degree of complete Awakening.

The Way of Adidam is not based on any form of search for the Divine. Adi Da makes the point that the Divine Reality Itself cannot be sought, since It always already is the case. Seeking for the Divine only puts off and diverts one from the actual finding of the Divine. The only way to realize the Divine is for the Divine to be revealed directly. Adidam is a God-Realizing Way because Adi Da's Incarnation here directly reveals the Divine.[1]

Implications of a Divine Incarnation

A Divine Incarnation actively Transmitting now provides immense opportunities: most significantly, for Divine Enlightenment. The possibility of God Realization depends upon the Divine appearing in human form; the Divine Being and State are not otherwise accessible to humankind. (Figure 1 illustrates how the traditional processes of Realization stop short of the Divine State. One can't Awaken "oneself" from the "dream"; the Divine Person must initiate the process by "crossing over" into the "dream".)

Short of our own Divine Enlightenment, Adi Da's appearance here is also extraordinarily clarifying. He demonstrates what Divine Realization looks like in factual — not mythical — terms. And He provides the unadulterated details of how Spiritual Realization works, comprehensively addressing the questions of spiritual beginners in the 21st century. Here are some of those questions.

Will "Realizing God" require giving up my ordinary life and viewpoint? Will it "ruin" my life? Yes! There can be no Realization of God the Great Identity without complete transcendence of "self" the lesser identity. At some point, we realize our "precious" ordinary lives are pretty "low" on the scale of possibility, as we start to really suffer their limitations (often as we age). Such "positive disillusionment" opens us to being Awakened out of this mediocre destiny, which otherwise keeps repeating mechanically, lifetime after lifetime.

He who desires a comfortable and nice life and at the same time wants to realise the Self is like the fool who, wanting to cross the river, caught hold of a crocodile, mistaking it for a log of wood.

Swami Vivekananda, Sadhanas Or Preparations For Higher Life

[Adidam] is not a message for consumers, it's a wake-up communication! You don't get to be the same. You get to be told you are full of it!

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, September 19, 2008

Most Perfect Realization of Reality Itself utterly destroys your egoic life so watch out! The "trouble" with seventh stage Divine Self-Realization is that there is no "one" left over to enjoy "It"!

Adi Da Samraj, The Way of Zero Bargaining
Part 17, The Aletheon

Only Real practice undoes the psycho-physical energies of bondage the practice that coincides with Transcendental Spiritual Blessing, profoundest devotion, Real Transmission, real "self"-discipline, endurance of often intense difficulties, going Beyond "self", becoming a "self"-ruin in the course of practice until by uncommandable Grace, there is Revelation which is Undeniable and Absolute, and Which never could have been thought before.

Adi Da Samraj, part VI of
"The 'Perfect Practice' of 'Perfect Knowledge'
Is The Avatarically Given Divine Way of Adidam"
"Radical" Transcendentalism

Is the body-mind-complex leading you to Real-God-Realization? The body-mind-complex is a "guru" that leads you toward karmic destiny. It is the ego. The body-mind-complex is the ego. The body-mind-complex is the "self"-contraction. The body-mind-complex is what you are transcending in the Great Process, then. It is specifically just that. In the course of ego-transcending practice, then, there are increased dimensions of the body-mind-complex for which you become completely responsible, or at least fundamentally responsible. You cannot simply fulfill your destiny in life and Realize Real God at the same time. It is not possible. You must put yourself to work. You must transcend your limitations. You can practice the Reality-Way of Adidam in the context of household living. This is certainly possible, if you bring the discipline of the Reality-Way of Adidam to household living. I have made it very clear to you how you may do so. But if you simply will not do it, you are just stuck with the "householder's" destiny. Then you are just fantasizing Real-God-Realization in some fashion that consoles you, perhaps. What you have is the "householder's" destiny just that. And what will you have twenty years from now? What will you have after this lifetime? What is existence for altogether? If you are going to get involved in intimate relationships and make babies, and so forth, you better take practice into account! so that you have fullest energy and attention available for the Great Process. Otherwise, that is just a ticket into the "world".

Avatar Adi Da Samraj

As one of Adi Da's devotees puts it poetically:

Invoking Him

this world crumbles
into pumice and ash

like Pompeii

when your tongue
touches the roof of your mouth
to pronounce His Name

the destruction
of self's ancient city
is Inevitable

when the Syllable of Him
rises out of your throat
like molten lava

an Eruption of Bhava
will rain down
to cloak your ruins

when The Master is Invoked

Michele Krueger

Is the Guru-devotee relationship archaic? Now that we're living in the modern world of the 21st century, wouldn't a "do it yourself" approach work?
Like the laws of physics, the "psycho-physics" of how Spiritual Realization actually works does not change just because social trends do; the Guru-devotee relationship remains its very core. The "self" preferring the "do it yourself" approach is the very identity needing to be transcended. For more about why the Guru-devotee relationship is essential for Divine Realization, click here.

How can we know Adi Da is a Divine Incarnation? By the unique characteristics of the Divine State He Transmits the complete dissolution of all sense of "separate self", the Revelation of Consciousness and Energy as a Unity, etc. relative to which each of His devotees is a "recognizer" and "reporter" (not a "believer"). Read the stories and testimonies on this site (or watch our videos), in which devotees from around the world, who are "tuning in" to His Transmission, describe the Revelation they have received of Who Adi Da is, and what He offers. Talk and meet with them. Read our FAQs about taking up the Way of Adidam. Then place yourself in a position where you too can receive His Transmission, and the Revelation of Who He is: view pictures and videos of Him; listen to talks by Him; view His "Image Art"; visit Adidam's Sacred Sanctuaries — all of these means have been Spiritually Empowered by Adi Da to channel His Transmission.

For much more about recognizing Adi Da as a Divine Incarnation, read our article, "The Significance of Recognition in the Way of Adidam".


In a world ruled by human egoity and by the "bad news" egoity creates worldwide, the amazingly good news is this: Beyond all materialistic expectations, Perfect, Eternal Happiness is possible; and the means for Awakening to that egoless Divine State is presently available through the devotional and Spiritual relationship with Adi Da Samraj:

Adi DaThere is only One Absolute Realization. I have described it when I said It was the "Bright" as an infant. I described it [when I was a student at Columbia University]. I have always been describing it. It is the Self-Existing, Self-Radiant Conscious Light, The Divine Self-Condition That Is Always Already The Case. Everything else is a mere and unnecessary appearance. And nothing else is satisfactory only this One Realization, which is Absolute and transcends all perception and is utterly and inherently and perfectly egoless and Divine.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
August 22, 2004

You are just beginning to Awaken.

I am like the sunlight in the morning. I intensify the light of morning until you Awaken.

Until the Light Awakens you, even the Light of Consciousness Itself, you continue to dream, try to survive within the dream, manipulate yourself within the dream, pursue all kinds of goals, searches none of which Awaken you.

Those who are Awakening in Truth begin to notice something. They begin to recognize the signs. They begin to recognize the activity of dreaming. They begin to sense something very unusual about Me. I Am your own True Self-Nature Appearing within the dream to Awaken you.

I Am your Awakening, and your Always Already Conscious State.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj, The Gorilla Sermon
in The Ancient Walk-About Way

Oh friends, do not fail to mind Me in and out. I am the Sweetness, the Taste of Unmortal and Unimaged Grace. I am beyond incarnation, neither here nor there. I am only for a moment — not merely to Save you all, but all to Warn and all to Call to this Wonder that I Am. And every one is as I Am, if only they fall in love with Me.

Avatar Adi Da Samraj
The Enlightenment of the Whole Body

To learn more about Avatar Adi Da Samraj and the Transcendental Spiritual Way of Adidam, please read the many stories and articles (as well as the many video and audio clips) on this site.


Editor's Note: An earlier version of this article was reviewed (line by line) by Adi Da and blessed by Him. After being translated into Hebrew, it was accepted for publication by Ma'ariv, the second largest newspaper in Israel, on 7/23/06, a date that Adi Da has indicated has special significance relative to the future of the planet. (For more, read chapter XXI of Adi Da's book, Not-Two Is Peace.) It was published a week later on 7/30/06, and appeared on the front page of Ma'ariv's Lifestyles section, and also appeared on the Ma'ariv website.

The publication of such an unusual article about a Spiritual Master who offers Perfect Happiness, appearing in a prominent place in a major Israeli newspaper at the height of the Israel-Lebanon conflict made news itself, appearing in some television news reports around the world (even as far away as Australia). Adi Da was pleased with the exposure, and called for us to replicate this degree of communication about His Offering on a regular basis. One of the ways we responded to His Calling was to create this Adi Da Up Close site a few months later (in February, 2007).



The primary point here (as suggested by the red "X" in Figure 1) is that one can't "Wake oneself up". The Divine must do that, by incarnating and making the Divine directly available. For more on this subject, click here.

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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