Masters of the Heart:
The Lives, Work, and Times of
Ramana Maharshi and Adi Da Samraj
an 8-session on-line audio course with Saniel Bonder
Personal Stories and a Unique Perspective
Bhagavan Sri Ramana Maharshi (1879-1950) has become increasingly well known in western spiritual circles as one of the brightest, most serene modern lights of Advaita Vedanta, the nondual path to Self-realization in Indian spirituality. Avatar Adi Da Samraj (1939-2008) was one of the most brilliant, radiant, enigmatic, and controversial spiritual masters to emerge in the tumultuous decades of the later 20th century west. Both professed profound realization and communicated forceful transmissions of divine consciousness and love as the “Heart.” And each made crucial contributions of grace and wisdom to Saniel Bonder's spiritual and total development, eventually leading to his autonomous transmission and teaching of the Heart.
During the nearly two decades he's been teaching, Saniel has often acknowledged and spoken of each of these Heart-Masters. But he's never been inclined to share many of his personal experiences, especially with Adi Da, with whom he studied for 19 years. Now the time has come to tell his stories and to offer a unique perspective on each of these remarkable adepts, based on the pioneering attributes of his own work. He writes:
“Ramana Maharshi was, to use a traditional phrase, my “root-guru” of the Heart in the years 1972-73. Adi Da was my Heart-Master from late 1973 until August 1992. I feel it's time to more openly share my experiences of each of them and to offer the perspective on their lives and work that has become natural to me, based on my own life-work.
“Ramana tends to be idealized by many seekers as a perfect embodiment of pure Being. Adi Da is either loved or hated – he has wildly diverging camps of ardent devotees and equally passionate detractors. The great link between these very different men – the Heart – is not often acknowledged. But it has meant so much to me, as have each of them, that I feel called to acknowledge, celebrate, and reflect upon their lives and work for the benefit of whoever might be moved to hear this course, now and in the future. I also speak of how each one of them related to the Divine Feminine, the Shakti.
“I never met Ramana Maharshi – he died 9 days before I was born – but when he was my guru, I devoured everything I could find about him. Though I only spent a year and a half as his devotee, his impact on me was immense, even many years later. My first pilgrimage to his ashram in India in 1994, early on in my teaching years, could hardly have been more catalytic for my whole work.
“In contrast, I spent nearly 19 years with Adi Da, eventually writing his first biography, The Divine Emergence of the World-Teacher. Throughout those years as a dedicated devotee, I experienced his work and his ways often up close and personal. I want to share the highs and the lows of my relationship with and experience of this truly extraordinary human being. I don't intend to fascinate and titillate, but I did not hold back. I want people to get a graphic, real-life picture of this &lwquo;difficult&rwquo; man – one of his early self-descriptions – as I knew, endured, adored, and loved him. I also want to provide a distinctive interpretation of his contribution that steers a balanced, unflinching, yet appreciative course between the extremes of adulation and denunciation. That's how I naturally see him and his work.
“In the Masters of the Heart course, I present these great and mysterious beings through the lens of my own experience of each of them. The first part of each of the 8 course sessions focuses on my personal stories that also open windows onto their lives and work. The second part of each session looks at their lives and contributions through the perspectives provided by Linda's and my Human Sun expression of our own transmission, teaching, and approach.
I'm not interested in just sharing stories. I want any listener now or in the future to comprehend these amazing beings from the unique worldview that our own path has revealed, which we also call ROSEwork: “Radical Organismic Sentient Emergence.”
“For that reason, we're asking everyone who wants to take this course to view our DVD set on the Human Sun teachings, Awake and Radiant: An Invitation to Your Direct Conscious Embodiment. If you register for the course, you will be able to purchase the DVD set at a much reduced fee. We also strongly recommend that you listen to my recent presentation, The ROSEwork Evolutionary Advance, to which we'll send you a link at no extra cost. It will greatly enrich your appreciation of the course to get these exposures to Linda's and my teachings.”
- Introductory seminar
- Session 1 – The Awakening and Life of Ramana Maharshi
- Session 2 – A Modern Ancient: Ramana Maharshi's Transmission and Teachings
- Session 3 – The Heart and the Amrita Nadi: What Ramana Maharshi Meant to Adi Da
- Session 4 – Adi Da's "Bright" Birth, Early Life, and (Re-)Awakening, 1939-1970
- Session 5 – Adi Da's Early Work, "Teaching Demonstrations," and Search for Hermitage, 1970-1983
- Session 6 – The Seventh Stage, "Crazy" Teaching Work and Passion of Adi Da, 1970-1986
- Session 7 – Divine Emergence and Ascent: Adi Da's Blessing Work and Avataric Ordeals,
1986 and 2000, Leading to His Final Divine Translation, 2008
- Session 8 – Modern Masters of the Heart and Their Contributions to Us All – Summary Reflections
Masters of the Heart: The Lives, Work, and Times of Ramana Maharshi & Adi Da Samraj
8-session on-line audio course with Saniel Bonder, with 2-hour introductory seminar.
Prerequisite: View Saniel and Linda's 2-DVD set,
Awake and Radiant: An Invitation to Your Direct Conscious Embodiment
(available at $20 off when purchased with this course).