Imperience - Centre for Research and Training in P.A.M
“They are mostly dogmatic instead of Godmatic”  - Pujya Sri K.C. Narayana

“They are mostly dogmatic instead of Godmatic”
(“Event Horizon” P. 439)

Sri. K. C. Narayana

1. Master commenting on his work in South India for two years reckoned prior to July 1968 made the above statement. He laments that the results of the work done by him are good but not according (proportionate) to his labour. The word dogmatic used by him in this context needs to be understood carefully. This word certain times may be used as similar to a belief, or a canon or blind faith or even superstition. We may note that Religion is about dogma, beliefs. Faith and Spirituality are about experience. With religion, it is all settled. With faith and spirituality, it is an adventure. We remain open to the spirit, to revelation wherever we find it.

2. Dogma is an established belief or doctrine held by a religion or ideology thought to be authoritative and not to be disputed or doubted. While in the context of religion the term is largely descriptive, outside of religion its current usage tends to carry a pejorative connotation — referring to concepts as being “established” only according to a particular point of view, and thus one of doubtful foundation.

3. Religious dogma, properly conceived, reach back to proofs other than themselves, and ultimately faith. If the faith is questioned the dogma falls as dogmas are not rational categories. Dogmas are commonly found in many religions such as Christianity and Islam and in Shanmathas (the sects upholding the supremacy of Vishnu, Shiva, Ganapathi, Kumara, Shakti and Surya) of Hinduism where they are considered as core principles that must be upheld by all followers of that religion. As a fundamental element of religion, the term “dogma” is assigned to those theological tenets which are considered to be well demonstrated, such that their proposed disputation or revision effectively means that a person no longer accepts the given religion as his or her own, or has entered into a period of personal doubt. Dogma is distinguished from theological opinion regarding those things considered less well-known. Dogma may be clarified and elaborated but not contradicted in the teachings. Rejection of dogma is considered heresy in certain religions, and may lead to expulsion from the religious group. This fear of expulsion from the religious group makes many aspirants who have direct awareness to some sacred knowledge trying to somehow paste it on as the new interpretation of the dogmas. This fear makes them not proceed further in the path.

4. However it must be noted that the dogmas of Hinduism are formidable. The theory of rebirth, the theory of Karma and the theory of Mukti are the three most important dogmas through which Indian philosophy has been made subservient to ethics and religion. The influence which these dogmas have over the moral and religious well-being of the Indian people cannot be overestimated. Not all Indians are believers in God, not all of them believe in prayers, divine grace, or devotion as the best mode of approach to God, but all of them believe in these articles of faith. They have thus held together the entire relgio-moral fabric of the Hindu-Buddhist-Jaina culture. Master also has accepted all these three articles of faith and therefore when he called some persons dogmatic he was surely not referring to these three dogmas of Hinduism.

5. Persons who are determined to know God and relied on personal experience have always questioned the dogmas. The Gnostics believed that questioning ones faith was always important. They held that to know (gnosis) God was to seek deeper and honest meaning for ones life. This gnosis led to integral awareness of oneness of relationship to God and the world. The way of the Masters was always a spiritual journey, not a system of right beliefs. The traditionally or orthodoxically oriented persons have always tried to somehow pattern their personal knowledge to the dogmas of the mutts, missions or ashrams to which they belonged. They wanted always a precedent to quote and the names of accepted authorities like Adi Sankara or Bhagavad Ramanuja or Ananda Tirtha were freely and to a certain extent fearlessly used to substantiate their personal spiritual experiences. But in reality they were only trying to dilute their valid, valuable and authentic awareness gained in the new path. All this is due to fear of the organisation to which they formally belong branding them as “heretics” for daring to put forward an experience or Imperience different from the accepted notions of the organisation. It is history to state that the voices of genuine seekers who differed from the Organisation to which they belonged getting ‘booed’ and silenced. ‘Mobacracy’ has its own way of success and the power of the mob is formidable. It is very few that resist the oppression of the majority. However the institutional opinions always prevailed and this is one of the misfortunes of humanity that dogmas prevail over truth.

6. Though dogmas dominate the organisations of spirituality, Godmatics have always found the scripture providing them a more refreshing, honest, open, spiritual, loving and exciting way to be a follower of the Path. Those who are ‘Godmatic’ or real seekers have a style of faith that is free, open and creative; one does not have to be told repeatedly as to how to act and particularly what to believe. The Commandments of the Master are sufficient and one can and should use his brain and knowledge to apply them to suit the personal perspectives. The supreme gift of God to us is ‘thought’ and we need to apply the ability to think given to us appropriately. The ‘Godmatics’ believe that they have a way of seeking God and that is more important than finding God by a certain dogma or belief or being a ‘dogmatic.’

7. Rev. Babuji in his letter to Dr.K.C.V. was sharing the difficulty he was facing to do spiritual good to the aspirants of South India. The great Achaaryas of South India have given their systems of Vedanta and the fashion of the day is to speak about Advaita or Visistadvaita whenever there is some topic of discussion or debate on a subject of spirituality. It matters little to them as to what their personal experience shows and it is of paramount importance to put the new path in the old wine bottles. Master talks of spirituality being simple and natural and for him the whole effort is directed towards gaining Balance in life. He clarified his position very clearly in his message “Solution to the problem of Life” stating that “We always like to seek our way or to solve our problem of life through the difficult methods so commonly prevalent in our Country. That is why disappointment and frustration result. We want to extract essence from fatty substances, in other words, from things which are puffed up with material knowledge and not from the bones where Phosphorus is abundant to illumine the particles however soiled they may be. Our difficulty thus becomes greater in the struggle.” Continuing he asks us to “Adopt easy means for gaining the easy thing. Dogmas can do you no good. It is only the practical thing that can weave your destiny, under the guidance of one who has measured the distance and has discovered the original source.”

8. The dogmas that are governing the thinking of aspirants in general in South India relate to dogmas or fixed notions about the nature of Brahman or Atman and many other less discussed topics which stand as superior in the minds of the Dogmatics. They refuse to admit the supremacy of their own experience over and above the opinion of the Acharyas as understood by them and they find themselves in a position where help from the Master also finds limitation. This aspect of their partaking the milk and yet spoiling their sweet mouth by taking pickles was a point made by the Master and that was the subject matter of an earlier seminar. The infallible will of the Master not withstanding the Dogmas they entertain keep them glued to the odd notions and perceptions of their intellectual liking. This is a great tragedy: the Sun shines bright yet the Bea caught in the lotus is not able to come out of the flower, lost as it is in the nectar of the flower oblivious of the light of Sun who supports its beauty and all existence.

9. Dr. K.C.V. states the problem of the aspirant by giving a bird’s eye view of the notions we have gained from various systems of philosophy. He states that “We have not merely the six orthodox Astika (Vaidika) but also the several Nastika (avaidika) darsanas as expounded by Madhava charya in his SARVA-DARSANA SAMGRAHA. We are also confronted with the stimulating influence of Western philosophies or rather World philosophies and we are discerning the identity of views or near-identities or similarities all over the globe. In a sense we are enabled to go beyond our little territorial grounds. Inward understanding and realization of gaps in thinking and deductions which were slurred over by dogmatic faith has not only helped us to look forward to a new build up in the internal structure of our darsanas but also the world philosophy to be. This needless to warn, is a very slippery ground. It is nonetheless valuable in so far as we know that most of the commentaries of the earliest works in each darsana seem to have been written long afterwards.”

10. The problem is mainly to differentiate between faith and dogma. Master dwelling on the topic of Faith in his book “Reality at Dawn” states that “True Faith is really an unspeakable virtue which beyond the scope of religion, it is the dauntless courage which leads us on to success, it is that ubiquitous force which makes our path smooth, it is in fact the only thing that solves our problem of life.” When we consider FAITH we for definite do not mean DOGMA nor do we mean BELIEF. Faith is an overwhelming necessity, which in the final resort overrides all our actions and beliefs. At times it even seems as if Faith is simply another name for God, it is that in which we live, move and have our being. A rudimentary faith precedes any action, without it we could never make the first step, that first tentative move.

11. Before we even knew we could take our first step, we had already embarked on that exercise and thus we started to walk. Walking, for the intellectual may be a matter of questioning the reasons for our earlier stages of development being confined to sitting, rolling over and crawling and consequent development. But that is not the case. There is faith in the individual that make him develop to a higher state. Without that step of faith, our lives are restricted in terms of both action and thought. We breathe because we can; it is not an act of reason or a rational decision. It is Life and it simply is. For most of us, not being able to understand how this amazing organism, the human body, functions does not lead us to give up on breathing. We do not have to ‘believe’ in breathing in order to partake of the activity but, we must admit, our lives would be much poorer without breathing. The Faith in the system of the Master might have granted us a set of doctrines or beliefs as its foundation but, the faith is much more than the beliefs that we affirm. When Faith is lost and we stick to these doctrines and notions that were generated by us become more important, then a dogma is born. Some of the dogmas the disciples of Rev. Babuji seem to entertain are:
a. ‘Pranahuti is a panacea’
b. ” purification process eliminates all our samskaras’’
c. “The Living Master” means a physical entity
d. “The last word in spirituality has been already said.”
e. “ with the departure of the Master from his physical cage we have all become widows and orphans”
And perhaps many more are in the making. We need to be careful about this tendency in all of us to uncritically accept notions about Master and his method generated by persons whose claim to authenticity is just the physical proximity they had with him during his life time and not sanctioned either by their evolved condition nor the scriptures of the Master.

12. Concurrent with the tendency to create dogmas is the creation of a new religion of Natural Path. This may appear to be an unnecessary fear for after all the Master is infallible. Master stated that no curvature will ever occur in his organisation and we know we were all united in making that (him) untrue. These are arguments based on emotion and sentiment and not based on reality of facts. Master has stated in several places that there are many other ways and he was giving a new and fresh system that can be followed by all. He never said that without his system or his support no one can reach God. That would be making him a joker. To say that I know the path and can help others in the path if they are willing to follow what I say is entirely different from saying that no one else knows the path and there is no way other than this. He says he gives us the path of grace or dayal marg but simultaneously he says there is another path through Kaal sakti. He is frank in stating that his Master did not teach him that path and he found that after his curiosity was roused in the same by his Master. But the dogma today is “Believe in Living Master or go to hell,” and “obey the rule of the authoritarian Organisation or Mission,” and you would have salvation.

13. In contrast, for us the Godmatics it is far more important to seek God through Imperience than to “just believe.” We are surely believers of the Master the Special Personality but we hear a different message from the Master in our heart than the one propagated by self styled authorities in spirituality. We have beliefs, but we do not insist we have a special corner on or final truth in interpreting the world or God. Master’s messages are all purely spiritual than religious. The place to find God is within oneself and more particularly in the heart and not in externals like belief, dogma or dictates of the organisation. Our faith and understanding of the Master’s works is that we can experience and imperience the eternal Master within. It is not by a set of correct beliefs or creeds, but by sadhana that we realise our oneness with God. It is not the dogmatic belief in the Master but our personal relationship with Him is the way. We do not have the capacity to fix God to certain pet notions and ideas and ideologies.

14. Therefore, it is essential for us to know our true self and be guided by the messages of the Master who is transforming us with his grace and power of love and majesty of the twilight. Being Godmatic with faith in our Master and his method and moving towards Infinity is the true Faith. Seeking God and become one with Him because of the imperience granted to us by the Master and his exhortations in his messages is the real Shraddha or Faith. That is the style of the Godmatics and that spirit will be found in the literature that the ISRC provide to all seekers.