1. Introduction — The entire landscape of emotion and sexuality is a minefield of contradictions, immensely powerful in their influence over virtually every aspect of ordinary life, from the very moment of conception onward. Adi Da’s work with sexuality has always been predicated on this fundamental acknowledgement. Nevertheless, the methods He has employed to address this area of life in relation to devotees have prompted challenges to His Work and questions about His integrity as a Realized Spiritual Master. This essay is especially addressed to those who are newly responding to Adi Da Samraj, but who have heard possibly confusing accounts of His intimate Work with devotees. I write not in the spirit of contention, but to shed light on the heroic and groundbreaking nature of His Work in the complex, emotionally charged, and complicated domain of human sexuality.
2. The Context of “Consideration” between Adi Da and His Devotees — Adi Da’s consideration with devotees of emotion and sexuality (which included every aspect of ordinary human life) was never a “thing in itself”, but an essential lesson about seeking, and also a necessary preparation for real Spiritual life in His Company. But why sex? What would prompt a Spiritual Master of Adi Da's stature to so openly explore sex and emotion with those who gathered around Him? Adi Da writes, "I Have Observed That sex — or, More Accurately, emotional-sexual life — Is The Primary Obsession Of human beings, Especially In The Earlier Stages Of Life. Human beings Are self-Driven To Fulfill their emotional-sexual Motivations." He was compelled by an overwhelming compassion to serve a greater self-understanding and personal responsibility in His devotees — as the necessary foundation for His Spiritual Work with them.
3. “I Did Not Work With ‘Super-Straights’ ” (The Context of Adi Da’s Self-Submission Work) — Many of Adi Da’s early devotees were already unconventional in their personal habits and social attitudes. They came to Him from the common world, but with all the counter cultural emblems of the early '70s, including, in many cases, a history of free sexual and lifestyle experimentation. His devotees were not even remotely qualified for real spiritual practice. Seeing all of this, Adi Da Samraj concluded that He had no recourse but to “come down off His chair”, that is, to submit to His devotees by living intimately with them and directly addressing their most basic human concerns. Adi Da knew that to move His devotees beyond emotional-sexual concerns and conflicts would require an open, yet profoundly intimate process of inspection and self-examination, free of puritanical attitudes, prudery, and squeamishness. Adi Da’s early students were willing participants in this consideration and all the theatre that attended it. Once it was clear that a truly open context (free of social and sexual taboos) had been established in Adi Da’s Company, they felt free to explore their sexual fascinations and interests and also to divulge their sexual concerns, problems, and obsessions. While the exchanges between Adi Da Samraj and His devotees uncovered every kind of limitation on emotion, sexuality, love, and self-understanding, they were primarily an intensive investigation of the dynamics of love itself, and a calling to what is beyond and greater than all forms of ordinary human expression.
4. Personal Testimonies — Several stories concretely illustrate the paradoxical nature of Adi Da’s compassion in the modern-day context of His own Work: Frank (Cheech) Marrero's story about knowing how to have sex, but not how to love; Katsu's story about having a body-negative, sex-negative, fearful, and self-suppressed point of view; and Eileen McCarthy's story how, as an emotional-sexual being, she was self-suppressed and hidden. Each devotee describes how Adi Da gifted them with self-understanding of these core patterns.
5. Disaffection and the Scapegoating Ritual — There is an organized campaign against Adi Da (and Adidam) being waged by a small group of disaffected members. Much of what is said or alleged by this group is simply untrue or beneath any level of serious comment or dialogue. But my firm conclusion, based on all that I have seen in Adi Da’s Company over more than 30 years, is that the underlying reason for their reactivity and disaffection is not some wrongdoing on Adi Da’s part, but the simple fact that did not get what they wanted or expected from Him. What they actually received from Him (which invariably included His direct — and yes, even His dramatically wild, unconventional, and harsh — criticism of egoic tendencies) was a fundamental lesson in self-understanding and responsibility that they simply refused to accept.
6. The Paradoxical Conclusion Of Adi Da's "Self-Submission" Work — Adi Da has only recently revealed His final conclusions about His years of Teaching-Submission in general and about emotion and sexuality in particular. In both instances, His conclusions are surprising and paradoxical. Those relative to sexuality run contrary to the “spiritual” mind of popular “new-age” culture. More significantly, they also run counter to various tantric traditions and practices aimed at the yogic transformation of sexual energy into spiritual energy. Sexuality, Adi Da affirms conclusively, “is not causative” relative to the real spiritual process.
Regarding His Self-Submission Teaching-Work altogether, Adi Da describes how His Work “to Reflect humankind back to itself” necessarily failed, because, it was conclusively proven by Him that it does not work to address people as egos — as presumed separate beings, who are identified with a body-mind and seeking its fulfillment by any means, high or low.
7. Conclusion — After so many years of firsthand experience in His Company, I am convinced that Adi Da Samraj is singularly devoted to the Liberation of each and every devotee and to the Transmission of His Divine Heart-Blessing to all. But Adi Da’s Work with each individual necessarily involves a calculated risk, the outcome of which is always uncertain. This is because the real requirements for ego-transcendence are often more than individuals are willing to undergo. This is where all the controversy really lies. In the end, each individual is simply invited to consider Adi Da’s Teaching-Revelation, and, if so moved, to freely take up the Way of Adidam in His Company. Only in the actual practice of this Way — in direct relationship to Adi Da — does one discover firsthand, and to one’s fullest satisfaction, the Truth and Purity of His Heart-Revelation to all.