What are the most useful methods of the spiritual game?

How do you clean up your game? How do you get to God? Well, you use methods.

The method of offering it to Kali, of purification is one method. Meditation is a method. Devotion and prayer are methods. Hatha yoga is a method. Dance is a method. Methods upon methods. However, the methods are an illusion. You use the illusion to get out of the illusion.

The game isn’t to end up a good meditator; but to end up free.
The game isn’t to end up a good Buddhist; it’s to end up Buddha.
The game isn’t to end up a good Christian; but to end up Christ.
The game isn’t to end up loving; it’s to end up being love.

You must ask for it all. Demand it all, but be willing to sacrifice. And surrender all.

Look around and see what methods you feel you need to use for what you’ve got to clean up your game.

If your mind is agitated and you need to calm your mind down, look around for meditation techniques. Learn how to meditate, and you’ll learn how to quiet the mind. If your heart is tight and closed, approach devotional yogas and techniques.

If you feel that you don’t understand what’s been happening to you, Study some philosophy and you’ll begin to understand what the game is all about. If you find that you’re tuning to spaces where huge amounts of energy are pouring through you, And your body is weak, get your diet straight. Learn to sit tall so that energy can flow freely through you and you can become strong.

Because I’ll tell you, before the journey is done, before you have become in truth what you truly are, you will have to become strong enough to hold all of the energy of the entire universe, not to withstand but to surrender into.

You will have to be able to open into that ocean of love that is lying within you.

You will have to surrender into your own love. You will have to quiet your mind, in which no thought grabs at the mind. The mind is like the vast deep ocean, where thoughts are like the waves on its surface. Before you are done, all of that will happen.

How you will get there is the whole business of method or Sadhana, and at first you will say, “My mind is agitated so I’ll meditate. My heart’s not open, I’ll try a little of this, a little of that,” it’s like going to a smorgasbord. Then as your demand to go home gets stronger and stronger, and you’re not just someone who wants to want God, and your whole life is dedicated to getting free, you will be pulled towards a more consuming form of getting free. You will understand that what is keeping you back is your own lack of surrender of your models of the universe.

Then you will look for a teacher, for an environment that forces your hand a bit. And which do you pursue?

You will not choose it with your intellect. You must listen quietly inside. Begin to hear the lineage or the tradition which will be the tunnel through which you will progress. Because eclecticism will only take you so far. Eclecticism is based on the choice of your mind. At some point, you’ve got to surrender your mind to go the whole mile. So you don’t join a lineage because it’s the hip thing to do, because your intellect tells you it’s interesting. It doesn’t work that way.

You go through a lineage

A lineage which is purely defined, in which the teacher is a free being is one that catapults you out the other end. It isn’t designed to make you a follower of the lineage. It is designed to take you through itself. To free you at the other end. A less pure lineage is designed to trap you in the lineage, to make you a Buddhist or Christian or Hindu. Not to make you a free being.

When the people that lead do not have the full connection, they cling to the institution, rather than the truth. Institutions corrode unless they are constantly fed by the living spirit. The living spirit comes only through the beings who are in it. You can become an organized group as part of your path, but if you know it’s not enough, have the honesty to let it go.

Ultimately, when you come out of a lineage at the other end, you will acknowledge that through the Sufi, the Hebrew, the Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, on and on, lineage after lineage, come beings who have become the living spirit. Free beings who dance within the illusion. Free of the illusion, and thoroughly enjoying the illusion as the play with God.


-Ram Dass

3 thoughts on “What are the most useful methods of the spiritual game?”

  1. This just cracked my heart open and it could not have come at a better time. I am so grateful to Ram Dass and Rachel and everyone at LSR. I have pulled out my BHN book I bought at the Bodhi Tree. It feels like a huge embrace .

  2. Ram Ram – I appreciate this soft and gentle introduction to the 50th anniversary in celebration of the BHN book the was introduced into this plane of existence in 1971. I have been very eclectic this past decade, nice choice of word and dove deep to my heart soul to know my guru Baba Ram Dass. I am grateful for this opportunity to expand my knowingness though this participation and to touch loving awareness more often here and now in my heart and in all the heart souls that I meet in every way and in every moment reflecting this spiritual love on this journey. Thank you for making this into reality and for inviting us to open ourselves into more compassion and dedication for healing ourselves and our world. Namaste. Jai Hanuman ! Cambridge, Ontario, Canada, Earth, Sky, Universe


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