Bhagavan Das: Scumbag or Saint?


This weekend I watched Karmaggedon. I’m not going to say much about the film, other than it’s a documentary about Bhagavan Das of some sorts. The film spends quite bit of time deciphering whether or not Bhagavan Das is a guru or not. Is he a holy person or is he a sinner? Is he a scumbag or saint?

My first thought (in response to the movie’s overall question) is:  There is no polarity in Oneness. All simply Is.

My second thought is: Anyone in a human body is literally a scumbag. They are literally a skin bag of sh*t, blood, waste, & random thoughts, walking on two legs, slowly decaying before our eyes. But look at that body more closely & see the divinity there in the sh*t, waste & decaying flesh. See it all as divinely orchestrated & (w)holy. Understand that all of it has value at some point or in some way, sh*tty & rotten or not. And if you can’t see that, simply see it as beyond understanding or comprehension (with the mind). All of us do things that are stupid or misunderstood or unreasonable. Albeit to various degrees, but nonetheless, it happens. Bhagavan Das is one of many (when I say many, I mean innumerable) people that do things (repeatedly in various ways) that are foolish at the moment, but in hindsight, happened for some sort of reason.

My third thought is: Let’s get clear about what Guru means. Many people think it means spiritual teacher, or destroyer of darkness — someone who shows one the light & removes ignorance. But the meaning that is closer to the actual Sanskrit definition is ‘heavy.’ In the case of a teacher, it could be said to mean ‘hard to understand’, ‘heavy with knowledge’, or ‘hard to digest’. Another definition for guru in this way is, ‘to break, shatter’ — to shatter illusion. Bhagavan Das is definitely all of those definitions. Especially the latter. In the film there is no doubt he is ‘heavy with knowledge’, ‘hard to understand’ & he definitely shattered the illusion the director previously had of him (as a saint or perfect being). Which I’m sure came unexpectedly, as the director Jeff Brown was longing for someone to relieve him of his own demons or conflicting emotions, in order to find Self-realization. Instead he found a guru full of demons. But that is what life is.

Bhagavan+Das+nudeLife is the Divine as all of it: as the sh*t, the decay, the useless random thoughts, as well as the insights. It’s the stupidity & the brilliance. It’s the known & the unknown. It’s the pain & the pleasure. How could any of it be possible without the other? How could any of it be possible without Life-force? Without Energy? Without a heart beat? Without a pulse? Without a Divine spark?

I’m not here to condone anything that Bhagavan Das said or did (or still does). Or to say that the movie is good or bad. Or to say that the director is right or wrong. I’m here to say that it’s all Divine. And it all had to happen. Because it did. And the more we see life from a place of Oneness, the more oneness we will feel. The more we come from a place of Wholeness, the more wholeness we will feel. Much of that has to do with Unconditional Love. With compassion & acceptance, not just for those around us, but for ourselves first.

The desire for others to change stems from a deep desire for much needed change within ourselves. As well as the desire to understand another better, that too stems from the need to understand ourselves better. Self-reflection is always helpful in this matter. One could ask oneself: How do I cause my own confusion or suffering? How do I contribute to the confusion or suffering around me? Rather than placing blame, or looking for answers outside of ourselves, or trying to achieve some sort of perfection, or find perfection in another that could be mirrored — what if we just gently asked ourselves that question, “How do I cause my own confusion or suffering?” Many of us will say: “I don’t know” or “I know, but I can’t stop. It feels out of my control.” This is when the love, compassion & acceptance comes in. For others & for ourselves, always. Until little by little, we get the insights to gradually stop the suffering & clear the confusion.

And remember, insight happens on the inside. So look within yourself. It’s never about the other. There is no other (in Oneness).


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Filed under art & film, relationships, spirituality

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