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By michael ortega 8 years 11 months ago

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"You can drink with the Devil, but you must use holy cunning and leave him to pay for the bill."
-G.I. Gurdjieff

During David's recent Intensive in San Francisco, the moods, or bhava's during various sessions seemed very different, and I'm sure it was different for everyone. For me, the first meditation session was like deep sleep, or relaxation. I was being removed from the picture, so the Shakti could work through "me." During the next session, there was a huge infusion of Light/prana wafting down through the top of my head in no pattern and there was tremendous bliss and santosha. Then, afterwards during David's talk, he quickly changed from a sattvic bhava to a more fierce one, and he instructed us in the fierce fire of Tantric energy, where all aspects of existence are Divinized - even fierce states. There is a Divine Wrath that dispels confusion, or even the tamas/inertia of too much sattva/equanimity. During this time, I felt an intense transmission of powerful Shakti radiating in the space, as if exhorting us to use all means necessary to undermine ego. David spoke of Lions getting together just before the hunt and roaring together, to get each other fired up and in the spirit where killing is permissible, and this was clearly suggesting we do the same as we go out and hunt the fast deer of Ego, which will attempt to outmaneuver primal consciousness at every step. He spoke of doing whatever it takes to trick ourselves, invoking whatever might work to that end, and that in that domain of ego, morality is absent, and that by whatever means necessary is the order of the day ( of course, this needs to be understood with discrimination and in this specific context). This was useful and necessary to rattle our little cages of sattvic bliss that The Divine Mother as David sensed we had become complacent within, and it was energetically enlivening and inspiring. I was left reeling and felt the full force of the Kali in her scrimtar brandishing, ego-decapitating, fire-filled aspect!

MahaKali or Devi Gayatri

Om Adyayai vidhmahe
Paramesvaryai dhimahi
Tanno Kali pracodayat

May we realise the Primordial Energy. Let us meditate on that Paramesvari, the partner of Siva. May that Goddess Kali illumine us!

By ari.meyer 9 years 1 week ago

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The shakti was so strong at the SF Zen Center satsang on July 14th that I felt like I was melting back into primordial energy. The shakti seemed to be gently opening holes in my material being so that spirit could shine through. It was almost like earthworms working their way through hardened soil, making it fertile again. David was just radiating light like the sun god on his throne. It is impossible to describe in words just how rejuvenating this was.

After having spent many years of what seemed to be relatively consistent growth on the spiritual path (if one can speak in such terms), for a long time I felt that I have been somewhat inexorably devolving back into a "normal" human, material being. I know that may smack of spiritual elitism, but after experiencing your being dissolving into light on so many occasions, there is a certain horrific sensation if you start to solidify again. We are energetic beings, and a part of us burns with a desire to return to energy. When stagnation sets in and you feel yourself hardening into a "muggle", wherein your primary concerns are base and physical, your spiritual side becomes malnourished, and it feels like a slow death. Some have mentioned this as a type of "dark night of the soul", and it's a night that seems to never end.

I remember reading the story of Milarepa, who was given a special message by his guru Marpa just prior to Marpa's death. Milarepa was told not to open the letter until he underwent a major crisis. For years he held onto the letter like a sacred relic, at times keeping it on his head while meditating. At one point, though, despite his intense, unrelenting sadhana, he was no longer able to meditate. When this happened, he finally felt like all hope was lost. At that point he opened the letter, and the timely instructions helped him make the final push to self-realization.

I had likewise hit a wall where it seemed like I could no longer meditate effectively. My sadhana was just not happening. Thanks to David, I feel like I've been given a new lease on life. Thank you, David!

By davidspero 9 years 3 weeks ago

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"On Meditation," an edited talk by David Spero,
Given on December 1, 2007, Palm Springs, CA.

There are essentially two ways to meditate. The first method requires outer instruction, and what you are generally taught is how to control or quiet your mind. That is the most common method available and, as you know, there are many traditions and paths that teach this form of meditation.

The second form of meditation happens when the very energy in your own being is spontaneously activated. That can be called transmission-based meditation. In other words, instead of learning “how to do” meditation, you learn how to intuitively feel the activating power of your own consciousness – the shakti. That’s something we can call esoteric. It’s hidden. How this actually occurs remains behind the scenes. It’s not apparent. It’s not a “how to do.” It’s about the state in which you are already functioning.

There are many obstacles that a person has to overcome when performing meditation as a learned exercise. It can take many years to master practiced meditation to the point where there is real and constant illumination – what we call enlightenment or awakening or Self-realization. And that can be a long drawn-out process only because there’s so much conditioning to shed. There are so many layers upon layers of conditioning that have to be, first of all, seen and acknowledged, and then released. And the last sheath is the very one who is meditating; the very identity that believes it is practicing meditation. That’s the most subtle level of conditioning to be penetrated and transcended.

But when you connect with me in my transmission-based context, something radically different may occur, something that cannot be fully expressed in human language. But I’ll try anyway. In the simplicity and naturalness of your own functioning, you breathe. Your heart beats. Your nervous system functions. You take in prana - breath, energy, or light - and then you release the prana. And in that you are already functioning in a natural perfection that was present at the moment you took birth, and that has been flawlessly functioning for many years. The breathing process is rooted in an aspect of your being that we can call the prana sheath or casing.

What I stimulate in my teaching capacity is the activation of great energy or prana in your own consciousness. And that’s because your pranic sheath is being ballooned, it’s being blown up and expanded. So, you see, this transmission-based meditation has to do with you being meditated – not you as an individual, separate person learning something about meditation and then applying it, but breathing and feeling your way into this tremendous power that I have realized, that has been realized. You could say that that power actually is the “I,” which is an impersonal level of cosmic consciousness. So to say “I” realize it, there’s a kind of contradiction or inaccuracy in that. I just want to clear that point up so that there’s no confusion.

So, as you sit in my presence, for a certain time, you’ll find that something genuine starts to happen. You start to cook. Your energies begin to liberate spontaneously and a Transcendental Bliss floods your consciousness. But this is actually a very major event, the cataclysmic event that all human births are pointed toward.

This transcendence of individual attention is the merger of individual energy into something that is cosmic or universal, something that is realized without any effort. When you learn a practical form of meditation, effort is required. Perseverance is necessary in the gradual cultivation of a sacred inner space. But in my teaching we fall into the Bliss spontaneously, without preparation.

Because this is so subtle it will take a certain amount of time to grasp and everyone’s timetable is different. There’s no specific time as to when a full realization of this Bliss will occur, but one could say, generally, that it takes time to blossom into its fullness. You can, from the very beginning, experience this great awakening, but it may take time for the body and mind to actually adapt and learn to function within it comfortably and with full recognition, so that all of one's spiritual dilemmas begin to disappear. Spiritual questions become answered. Spiritual yearnings become fulfilled or dissolved in the inherent Radiance of Being. This is basically what I’m inviting you into, the invitation I’m offering.

It’s not necessary to believe in God, not necessary to acknowledge any traditional spiritual source in my teaching. You can be an atheist; you can be an agnostic. You can be anything because it’s not based upon belief. Your breathing is not based upon your belief system about air and oxygenation of the blood. Whether you believe those things is irrespective to living – you just breathe, that’s all. It’s an existential event and this is the same exact process I’m describing.

So, there’s really no God in this, no external God. You may encounter something within yourself that is, in its inherent magnificence, worthy of the name God, but that thing will not be any different than your own Self. It will be located in your Self, not “out there” somewhere. God, truly, is precisely that which dawns when all “out theres” disappear. So this does cover the territory that religion traditionally covers, most definitely. It does move into those areas referred to as “the Divine,” God, but quite from a different angle. You’ll also find that I’m not directly dealing with the contents of your mind. I’m not going to ask you to change anything about yourself – how you live, what you think. I just welcome you in a kind of innocence, and an innocent approach to realizing what for me is quite obvious, which may become obvious to you too.

By michael ortega 9 years 1 month ago

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"Siddhi, often referred to as mystical or magical power, basically means "accomplishment"...The siddhis have tremendous potential for practical application in healing and other modes of human service."
-Thomas Cleary

Siddhis are typically thought of as supernatural powers in yogic lore; however the primary meaning, as stated above, is accomplishment, and the one who accomplishes is considered a Siddha. This accomplishment is brought about through spiritual practice or sadhana and/or by the Grace of a Siddha who has already attained it. That other powers might be evident is usually incidental and they are not the point; these powers are the play, or grace of Realization in the field of action. The primary Siddhi is when you sit in the presence of a Master and can feel that attainment; it profoundly touches you, and it manipulates the pranic system of the body-mind. This experiential result defines a true Master, or Siddha.

David Spero is one who has obtained the Siddhi of Mahaprana Shakti, or the cosmic life-force. I believe that this is an incredibly rare thing anywhere, especially here in the West. The more I scan different yogic scriptures such as Kashmir Shaivism, Kaulachara Shaktism, Vaisnavism and other sources, the more I realize that the nature of the way David transmits and teaches is completely in accord with what these traditions indicate characterizes the nature of a true Siddha. Diksha or Shaktipat are an initiation into authentic yogic reality. This Siddhi is the proof of the possibility of attainment and the taste of it. Of course, I don't presume that David Spero is specifically seeking to be found as legitimate within the context of these scriptures, but he does suggest that one study them, so as to corroborate and aid us in understanding the correct context by which to approach him.

Without always saying it explicitly, the scriptures describe the importance of Initiation. That it is not explicit, suggests that we are in the domain of the esoteric. It is a secret, albeit an open one, that the true Master initiates through conferring shaktipat. This initiation awakens the disciple into the vast potentialities of the Bliss of Awakening. Shakti is not something to merely get high on, though; it points to and enlarges the Self into the ultimate Reality of Transcendental Consciousness. It is said that a Guru points the way. They teach and instruct us in the ways of the technologies of ecstasy (to borrow from Georg Feuerstein). The Avatars go further, by initiating and ushering us into Bliss and Divine Love. They open your mouth and shove the nectar into the soul, so that it might remember the Truth of the Divine. Avatars give endlessly, effortlessly and the only thing they ask for in return is that we taste and know the Truth. A person might study scriptures for years, sit for years, but unless that taste has happened, unless that Bliss is known, sadhana might never bear fruit. The true Master introduces you into the highest potentialities of Consciousness so that you might know that the one who asks a question inwardly is the one who answers it--that you are That. There is a masculine and feminine alchemy to this process. In the Tantric scriptures this is often symbolized by Shiva and Parvati. Parvati asks Shiva for instruction into the nature of Ultimate Reality, and Shiva answers.

" The Self, which is present in every form and is self-luminous, does both the questioning and answering itself as if by dividing itself into questioner and the answerer itself, both being itself at the same time."


Through imbibing the Shakti we can be initiated into this Reality. It plunges us into Ultimate Reality, or Consciousness. The Siddhi of David Spero activates an ever-deepening course. So, Initiation should not be underestimated. For this reason we fix our attention on the Teacher.

"For I am the goal
And the means,
The prosperity and the freedom
From all sorrows
For the Jnana Yogi
Nothing further beyond me
Need concern the vidvat-sannyasin"


"Oh Uddhava, know yourself
To be ready for this experience.
Once it is gained
Surrender it ~ and it's knowledge ~ to me
and worship me with devotion."

-Sri Krishna
from the Uddhava Gita, of the Bhagavata Purana

The Siddhi of accomplishment indicates that the Master is the goal and the means. What is shared is this Siddhi. The Siddhi of accomplishment is like a raft, or a rushing river that brings us to the destination. You surrender to the river completely and let it carry you all the way. Of course, effort is required, but the right effort, or correct effort is surrender. We allow ourselves to be carried and transformed; if we were to fight the current, exhaustion might ensue.

Siddhi awakens devotion in us. I used to think that a person is usually a devotional type to begin with, or a Jnani, or a Karma-yogin. You are naturally, constitutionally predisposed to one or the other of these approaches. It was only after I encountered rare Masters that I realized that, through initiation, devotion is produced. Of course these propensities are probably latent, but a Master can, through his/her Siddhi, awaken these potentialities in us. This could be said to be another definition of Siddhi - the power to Awaken. Siddhi also means power. The accomplishment of the Master is simultaneously that power which transmits and awakens Consciousness. I have found myself awakened into profound states of Devotion, Bliss and Self-Abiding Calmness by sitting in David's presence, as have so many others. I have found the same situation with David that I have read about with people who sat with famous Masters. Many described going to the Master with their heads filled with questions, only to take a seat in their presence and have them fall away in the radiant field of his/her Bliss.

This has definitely been my experience.

Salutations to David Spero!

By Abha 9 years 1 month ago

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6/21/09 It's been 6 days since the San Francisco Intensive and I've started seeing some changes. Going back to when I started seeing David again in February, he had allowed me into a womb-like environment where all was provided; Light, Love and Shakti. In that space, I was able to be completely vulnerable in order to fully take in the Immensity of That Bliss. All the while, of course, I felt very dependent on the physical proximity of David. When David moved North in May, I experienced separation anxiety, though part of me knew David would always be there. In a way, I felt as if I was still in the womb, really unable to fully breathe on my own. It was a painful 35 days. On June 14, I flew up to SF for the Intensive. David talked of owning your energy and experiences that you have at home, as your own. After I returned home, over the next week, online David told us to look at our own being, separate from anyone else and notice how big the "I" is, how vast It is. As I did that, I was surprised, that the "I", did feel vast. Slowly over the next few days I began to realize that David had somehow taken me out of the womb, without me realizing it and was saying, "Look how you can breathe on your own!" Tonight as I started to meditate and felt the Love Light and Shakti, I thought of David and how wonderful it was to sit with him in San Francisco. I realized that the love I have for David no longer has in it, that fear of separation. I want to be with David physically, whenever possible, but when I'm not with him physically, I no longer feel like something is missing.