Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

I just love Adya and I think he deserves his own forum.

Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby karmarider » Tue Nov 23, 2010 3:10 am

samadhi wrote:As for the book - I liked (and in places loved) it and yet it also left a bad taste in my mouth. It was powerful and provocative, yet some things did not sit well with me and I had some issues with the character of 'Jed'.


Yup, me too. But that might be the whole point. We all create ideas about what enlightenment is--in fact there has been quite a bit of fist-thumping on what awakening should taste and look like recently. Jed is a good a reminder that all of this is really just the ego's will to survive. It's a difficult but important realization.

samadhi wrote: Firstly, why the need to write under a pseudonym?


Because Jed and Adya appeal to different audiences. Egos that are highly attached to spiritual practices or conceptual theories or philosophy or meditation would find Jed very uncomfortable.

Adya for example says that he woke up from Zen Buddhism. Jed is more direct--that Buddhism does not produce Buddhas. Both say the same thing, but Adya is the kinder, gentler version.

samadhi wrote:Jed himself often came across, at least to me, as arrogant and sanctimonious at times. The constant assertions of "I'm enlightened (and one of the very very few people who are) and you're not" almost verged on egomaniacal. And maybe it's just my innate distaste for religions that claim their way is the ONLY way, but his continual tendency to tear pretty much EVERYTHING to shreds but what he was teaching left a bad taste in my mouth. Yes, it's important to recognise that so much of religion and spirituality is just dreamtime stuff, but sometimes even the densest of these can provide openings into genuine presence and awakening. Fundamentalism in any form is pretty offputting to me, and I was left with a bad taste in my mouth.


Yeah, me too. And yet, I keep coming back to him. Jed is probably the most direct teacher (or writer) there is. He rejects all techniques except one: ask yourself the next question. That's it. Don't conceptualize too far, don't practice, don't make some sort of validating mystical thing out of this. Watch the ego's will to survive, it shows up in diabolical ways. Just look at the next question you want to inquire into, and do it.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby samadhi » Tue Nov 23, 2010 5:29 pm

Yup, me too. I think it's just a case that Adya works for me, while Jed kind of annoys me. I have no proof they are the same person in spite of the similarities in teaching and despite the disparity in attitude. I'm over it already, I will stick to the former and forget that the latter exists (if he even does ;)).
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby samadhi » Fri Nov 26, 2010 1:36 pm

karmarider wrote:Yeah, me too. And yet, I keep coming back to him. Jed is probably the most direct teacher (or writer) there is. He rejects all techniques except one: ask yourself the next question. That's it. Don't conceptualize too far, don't practice, don't make some sort of validating mystical thing out of this. Watch the ego's will to survive, it shows up in diabolical ways. Just look at the next question you want to inquire into, and do it.


Yeah, I've never quite known a book like it - I was simultaneously annoyed with it and yet it contained some very deep expressions of truth. There's definite power to it. I imagine the Jed books are very polarising, you either love or hate them. Or in my case a bit of both. I'm pretty sure Jed, whoever Jed is, was speaking from a place of wakefulness, I recognised the truth of what he was teaching, I guess I just felt it was presented in a way that was a little...merciless at times. But that might be exactly the kick some people need.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby ivory » Fri Dec 17, 2010 7:48 am

I think that's exactly right. Jed and Adya appeal to different audiences. I think that Jed really appeals to the younger, rebellious type.

I was never a fan of Adya until I really started listening to what he was saying (I always felt he was too soft).

I was shocked as hell when I heard him say that the fastest, most direct way to awakening was to "Figure out what's true" (which is also what Jed says). I found that very shocking considering his background: Zen + meditation.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby karmarider » Fri Dec 17, 2010 12:40 pm

Adya also says he woke up from Zen and meditation.

Here's a pretty good interview of Adya: http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/38 ... this_sound
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby ivory » Fri Dec 17, 2010 6:48 pm

karmarider wrote:Adya also says he woke up from Zen and meditation.

Here's a pretty good interview of Adya: http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/38 ... this_sound


He didn't say that. He simply said he used to meditate a lot.

I think he awoke when he stopped seeking. When he gave up (even if it was briefly). This was his initial awakening experience:
Right after I said to myself, “I can’t do this,” everything opened up. I had an awakening of a sort, complete with a lot of the usual spiritual accouterments. A powerful kundalini energy besieged my body. My heart was beating so fast I thought it was going to explode. I thought I was going to die

This quote was interesting:
The role of the spiritual practice is basically to exhaust the seeker. If the practice does what it’s supposed to do, it exhausts our energy for seeking, and then reality has a chance to present itself. In that sense, spiritual practices can help lead to awakening. But that’s different from saying that the practice produces the awakening

But I think he actually awoke at a random time and for no apparent reason, which seems to be common. Some people are just standing around minding their business and BAM!

I'll see if I can dig up the video I saw of him. When he said the quickest method was, "figure out what's true," my bet is that he was saying that based on the results of his students, not his personal experience. This makes sense, I don't think an honest man would say the best method is "his" method, but rather the method that's work consistently for a larger number of people (at least I should hope).

** Edit: Here's the video, it has 11 parts but is worth the watch if you have an hour to kill: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dULlsNOlTqY
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby ivory » Fri Dec 17, 2010 7:09 pm

Actually, it seems the final moment for him was by self-inquiry. Who hears this sound?
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby karmarider » Fri Dec 17, 2010 8:45 pm

ivory wrote:
karmarider wrote:Adya also says he woke up from Zen and meditation.

Here's a pretty good interview of Adya: http://www.thesunmagazine.org/issues/38 ... this_sound


He didn't say that. He simply said he used to meditate a lot....


He's said it many times. Here's one quotation:

One of the first things I said to my teacher, and I was ready to get crucified for it, because I didn't know how she'd respond, but I said, "It feels like I just woke up from Zen, from spirituality. And she just smiled at me. And she pointed her finger, and she almost never did, and she said, "That's the whole point."


What he means by "figuring it out" is to develop self-honesty and self-inquiry.

What Jed Mckenna means by figuring it out is self-inquiry through spiritual autolysis and memento mori.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby strali » Sat Mar 12, 2011 8:59 pm

That so many of you believe Jed might be Adya really makes me question myself, but I'm still very skeptical. Jed says some things that seem to go against what Adya tries to convey to people.

For example, using one of your quotes, Jed says "If, however, your interest is in awakening to your true nature, then you're in the wrong place and you've got a very messy fight ahead and there's no point in pretending otherwise." Adya has repeatedly said that there's no need to fight anything to awaken, that this idea is actually very harmful. It's a very simple thing and the belief that there needs to be a long hard process to awaken is often what keeps some people from being able to awaken.

This quote also really emphasizes the need for struggle that I just don't feel from adya: "I like happiness as much as the next guy, but it’s not happiness that sends one in search of truth. It’s rabid, feverish, clawing madness to stop being a lie, regardless of price, come heaven or hell. This isn’t about higher consciousness or self-discovery or heaven on earth. This is about blood-caked swords and Buddha’s rotting head and self-immolation, and anyone who says otherwise is selling something they don’t have." Adya often says that anyone who claims that another path is wrong and theirs is right is missing something because it is not possible to know. Jed claims that 'unknowing' is the way to go but at the same time he acts like he has all the answers and many others are mistaken. Adya just seems to me to come from a purer, more truthful and less ego-based place.


Jed: "The student has no idea what the next thing they need to hear might be, but I know exactly what it is because I’m looking down from an elevation that lets me see exactly where they are, where they want to be, and where they have to go to get there. It’s all perfectly clear to me, but because they don’t have that overview, students cannot effectively chart their own course. That’s the role of the teacher, otherwise everyone could just pick up a book and, as Jolene puts it,bam!"
I don't think Adya would say something like this. He puts so much stress on the fact that it is the students responsibility to choose their own path and figure things out for themselves. He's different from many spiritual teachers because he believes that the teacher should play a more minimal role in the awakening experience, and he doesn't like telling people what to do. He definitely does not claim that the teacher is a necessary part of a student's awakening process like jed just did. I can't imagine him saying "students cannot effectively chart their own course". And again, this seems very ego-based to me, he seems to always be stressing that he is on a higher level than others.

It is interesting that they both spoke about manifesting good parking spaces, but they seemed to be using it to say different things. When Adya talked about The Secret and being able to manifest things, he was saying that the power to do this wasn't very attractive to someone who was awake. He said that he noticed he had this kind of power but he never used it except when he wanted to get a parking space once in a while, that it was more interesting to see what life provided for you than to make it do what you want.
I couldn't find where you quoted Jed from, but it would be interesting to know what he was talking about? It seems to me from that quote that he was talking about manifesting like it was a good thing, like people start with small things like traffic lights and aim to work their way up. Not really what Adya was saying at all.

They do say many of the same things but to me it seems like Jed is saying them from a totally different place. And I just don't see why Adya would publish under a secret name and keep his identity hidden because he doesn't want his followers to know this other side of him. Watching him talk, I feel like he is coming from a place of deep truth and I can't bring myself to believe this is something he'd do. I think if Adya had something he wanted to say to his followers he would just say it without worrying it might be too harsh or whatever for some of them to hear - he is already a very no-nonesense kind of teacher. It does not seem to me like Adya is suppressing his personality in any way to come across as more mild, I can't think of a reason that an awake person would do this. I guess it could be argued that he's just doing it to reach as wide a variety an audience as possible, but this seems like it would be somewhat manipulative to me, and Adya is definitely not about attaining as many followers as possible.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby Sighclone » Sat Mar 12, 2011 10:48 pm

I was in Adya's office last week. Although he was not there, I asked one of his employees if he was writing as Jed McKenna. She said "no, he liked the first book ("Enlightenment - the Damndest Thing") -- but not the others. She seemed authentic.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby samadhi » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:18 pm

Ohh that's interesting Sighclone. Although Adya reads out a story he's written in his Spontaneous Awakening series which sounds remarkably similar to the Jed style of writing...I just can't reconcile the two.

What Jed McKenna teaches is very much neo-advaita, or pseudo-advaita as some also call it. I found his approach quite aggressive, condescending and even egotistical - he takes great delight in knocking down everyone and everything but his own teaching. Adya can be quite brutal at moments (it occasionally slips through in Spontaneous Awakening), but he lacks the smugness and superiority of Jed. Not to say there weren't a number of pearls to be found in Jed's book (I only read the first one - I downloaded a preview of book 2 on iBooks and thought, "meh!"). Adya's teaching resonates better with me. But, hey, each to their own.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti...

Postby highlife66 » Fri Aug 05, 2011 11:23 am

Here's my $.02
IMHO Jed is Adya. Way too similar not to be. However it doesn't matter either way. I listened to Adya for a couple of years before I found Jed. I kept getting close but never fully "got" Adya. Then I read "Damndest" and "got" his explanation of "enlightenment". I have since read the other two and enjoyed all three equally. Now that I know that nothing is real and only my perception I get to experience true consciousness. Went through hell to get here though, now I "get" Adya! lol! 8)

Have fun,
Jeff
Do not seek after what you yearn for, seek the source of the yearning itself.
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby erict » Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:30 am

The expression "Reaarnaging deckchairs on the Titanic" was used both in Spontaneous Awakening by Adyashanti and Spiritual Enlightenment by Jed McKenna.
"Be sincere; don't ask questions out of mere interest. Ask dangerous questions—the ones whose answers could change your life."
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Re: Jed McKenna is Adyashanti?

Postby karmarider » Mon May 28, 2012 11:19 pm

I was fairly convinced Jed and Adya are the same. The idioms and parables and writing style and strong energy both exhibit in telling us to stop fooling ourselves with spiritual practices and concepts and adulation are similar from both. Also, although there isn't a complete physical description of Jed in his books, the impression I have is that it's very plausible that he looks like Adya--the tall, lanky, athletic type.

But recently I heard someone suggest that maybe Jed is Chuck Palahniuk. That's interesting too.

Of course, the simplest explanation is Jed is Jed.
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