25 Jul 2012
July 25, 2012

The Consciousness of Saints



Where do you feel that saints or realized beings fit into the evolution of consciousness, and what part do they play in the scheme of things, both inside the body and out of the body?

 Ram Dass: All beings are involved in an evolutionary journey. In the course of history, and far into pre-recorded history, beings have been getting lost in the illusion, and awakening out of it. Some beings have finished their work and have awakened out of illusion, the illusion that is involved in birth after birth, not only on the physical plane, but on every other plane as well. When these free beings finally emerge from the illusion through grace, through the help of other beings who have escaped, they are faced with a choice. That choice is whether to merge back into God, or to resist that merging and remain in form on one plane or another; either to take birth again on the physical plane or to make their substance condense on a lower astral plane in order to do ‘work’ for the relief of suffering of other beings.

The pull to merge is incredible. The love of God is so intense, and the completeness of the merger is a pull of such intense power that for any individual to resist that and remain separate is the greatest conceivable sacrifice. So the first quality that one attributes to true ‘saints’, truly free, realized beings is that they have made the ultimate sacrifice, just to be on any plane where we can recognize and know them. And they have done this specifically for us.

Many of the beings that are free in this way, and who have remained in form on one plane or another, work across planes and remain primarily on other lokas, in more subtle bodies, and they work not only with beings on those planes, but also with us on the physical plane. Many people have experienced or read about having a ‘guardian angel’, or the guidance of the ‘guru within’. Such beings are equally as real as beings on the physical plane; because all beings on all planes are only relatively real. For, in truth, the only Truth is the unmanifest Absolute.

The way in which these saints, these spiritual beings, help us is to speed our journey back to God. They don’t turn us around. If you’re aimed away from God they won’t interfere. But the minute you look up, the minute your despair concerning the possibility for worldly gratification is great enough, you turn inward or reach upward towards God. And at that moment these beings are called forth by your prayers, by your cry for help, by your seeking for God. And then they shower upon you the grace of their presence, and the vibratory rate of their presence speeds up your journey incredibly.

So that a journey through literally thousands upon thousands of incarnations, that has been evolving in an arithmetic curve suddenly becomes a geometric curve under the intense light, love and compassion of this grace. You could call what they do ‘brute force’. They don’t go against the will of God, but they work within it. And since the will of God has no time in it, since God is behind time, they can speed up the process. And thus, while a physical guru is not necessary, since every being will make it, the guru in fact does speed up the process incredibly.

On the physical-psychological plane, it’s apparent when one is around such a free being, that such a being is a perfect mirror for oneself, since they themselves are not attached to being anybody; who you see them to be is merely your own projection. Being around such a being allows you to see the way in which you are creating the universe. That mirror helps you gain the perception of your own attachments which ultimately allows you to become unattached to any models you have of the universe, and to truly see the guru who is none other than God, who is none other than Self, which is the unmanifest Absolute.

The guru is constantly confronting you with where you’re not, with where you’re holding your secret stash of attachment. For people who are still much attached to their senses and to their thinking-minds, the guru manifests the teachings on the physical plane. It may be through a person, whom you call a guru (that is, they may embody themselves on this plane for that purpose), or it may be just through a set of teachings that they may create for you out of your life ‘web’. Though they are not manifesting on the physical plane they manipulate the substance of your karma in such a way as to speed up your awakening, once you have reached up for God.


~Ram Dass, 1977

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  • http://www.thethirdtesticle.com Ron Shirt

    Is there such as thing as ‘the evolution of conciousness’? I wonder? Or are there just ‘wild winds’, jumps and things neglected, akin to ‘Cosmic Storms’?



  • Indra Starshine Giese

    Piercing thru the veil of illusion…
    Thank you Baba for all the help you have given us on our journey home.

  • Geoff

    If this is the case, I’m left to wonder why. Why the process? Why the test? Why does the Absolute split from Itself and play these games? Why create time? Why bother? Why doesn’t God, if He is absolute, complete love, existing outside of time, just remain in that perfect state? Why create suffering?

    • Sara

      The answer I got to this was that time doesn’t exist outside of God but within Him. So in one sense God is perfect but at the same time all of the bad we see around us is within Him – is part of Him. The reason we exist (as individuals) is to change the bad to good, as we purify ourselves individually God is purified.

  • http://@derailleur09 Jack B

    Wow, that sounds like my guru Paramhansa Yogannda. What a sacrifice he must continually make to come back to troubled planes like this time and time again just to guide our poor souls. Thank you for the beautiful commentary, Ram Dass.

  • Anthony Meier

    Thank you for reopening the eyes of my heart. The disintegration of self into love is always ongoing but not by any means linear. I keep seeing myself again and again and again yet I cannot see my way. I feel your consciousness within me through your words and thoughts and those around you. There is a reason so I will keep listening

  • Melanie

    I intuit suffering a bit differently: I believe “suffering” is born of the erroneous perception of the ego’s veils; I will continue taking birth’s until I “realize” that the separation has always been an illusion…I am He as you are He as we are He and we are all one, all ways. When I fully inhabit that consciousness, poof: the “suffering of separation” is revealed to have been my own misperception!

  • Melanie

    My erroneous sense of separation is the source of my suffering

  • M.A.DeSanto

    I thank you Ram Dass-
    Shine on :)

  • http://www.chroniclesofhan.com H Gibson

    Interesting. I wrote a Blog relating to this exact subject in Nov 2010 “Who am I, who is Han Storm?”
    Thank you Ram Dass for confirming our work.

  • Geoff

    Thank you, Sara, for your reply!

    Your reply was refreshing; I experienced a flash of clarity when you reminded me that all exists *within* the Absolute.

    I can understand that we might exist to help “purify” God or to “change the evil to good,” but that still doesn’t provide me with a reason. I’m still left asking why the Absolute would have us experience life as we do–filled with the pain of attachment and loss, the suffering brought on by our own inability to comprehend the perfection of ultimate reality. I get that we are part of a vast process, I just don’t understand the value of having us experience the process in the way we do.

  • Sara

    No problem, I struggled with this for a long time myself so I know how you feel! The thing is we ARE God, there is only one consciousness and it’s in all life. We are One. Only God isn’t perfect, there is both good/positive and bad/negative energy within Him/Us – just as there is within us as individuals. The negative energy has all been contained within what people think of as the astral realms so that it cannot contaminate the good energy – this good energy, outside of the astral, is where God is perfect. When we incarnate we bring some of the negative energy into the shared reality/physical world in an attempt to neutralize it – this is why we suffer, because of the negative energy inside of us and others. This is the reason life exists, to neutralize of all of the negative energy within God so that He/We can be perfect. Hope that makes sense, it’s hard to explain!

  • Erica

    As I have come to believe it, with much wisdom and understanding coming from Ram Dass and his teachings, suffering exists in our experience as grace, a way to speed up the process of enlightenment. It is through this suffering that we search for God and truth in the first place, most of the time. My personal philosophy is that the reason that we have any experience in the first place is to learn the lessons that will eventually lead us back to the One, or God, with fulfillment. However if suffering were not part of the process of realization…would we ever really look for truth in the first place? If everything were perfect then there would be no need to look anywhere or to learn anything, however it is not so..everyone is on a journey, the Universe was just set up that Way. Another view point, Ram Dass mentions, is that we left God “just for the sport of it”. Perhaps experience is just a game, perhaps it is all just a play of consciousness…isn’t it beautiful?

  • http://www.livingearthgatherings.org Betsy Toll

    Ken Wilber’s answer to “Why does God create samsara and all the beauty and pain of the universe?” is.. “Well, because it’s no fun having dinner alone.” I take that to mean that perhaps it’s that the pure One, boundless Godhead or Ground of Love stirs from boundless slumber and dreams of being two — of playing in deep subtle form as God, and knowing It would delight in, take deep joy in, having a dance partner – a beautiful, complex, free ‘other” to tango with. So from that Impulse of love emerges all the universe, with its drama and terrors and joys and sweetness. Something in that model resonates deeply for me. All that is is God’s beloved, enacting a drama in countless ways.

  • Geoff

    Thanks, everybody, for the beautiful thoughts. I’m swimming around in them right now, allowing some of these perspectives to emerge for my own mind.

  • Erica

    This is such a beautiful explanation…thank-you!

  • Erica

    Of course..we must all find the answers for ourselves..but we’re all in this together! ~Namaste~

  • Chakravarthy

    I am happy to see an interesting discussion here. Dear Geoff, frankly, any amount of explanation won’t alleviate the unending sorry of our life UNLESS, we really know HOW to overcome it. Even if we heard and convinced of through hundreds of examples and preachings, can we experience the eternal bliss from the next moment? This was discussed and reasearched to a great extent by indian saints and sages and is well documented in books like GITA. They all arrived at one common solution to achive that and the same is well explained to a common man in the following site. Hope this clears off the basic doubts on how to obtain and once you are convinced, the rest of the doubts on hows and whys can be cleared off from the GURU.

  • http://Website cynthia

    sara> with respect,
    God is perfect.
    From the perfect, comes the perfect.
    the notion that “negative” energy is somehow God’s and contained within other realms, thereby contaminating beings on the earth plane is sheer nonsense!
    (reread ram das’ post)
    The manifestation is for God’s experience of Itself.
    The suffering is caused by misidentification with the illusion, instead of realizing your identification with the Godhead.