NDM: Can you please tell me about your awakening, how and when this happened?
Braying Jack Cass: It was quite a shock. It happened very suddenly and unexpectedly, like that time I ate at the 1-star Indian restaurant in Tijuana, Mexico. When in Tijuana, stick with Mexican food, I say.
NDM: When you came to this Self realization, that you are "I Am", were you studying the Kaballah, or anything else like Vedanta, atma vichara, or Buddhism and so on?
Braying Jack Cass: I was studying Swahili at the time, actually. It’s been my dream since a child to go to Kenya and live amongst the goat herders. I haven’t gotten much past “Hamjambo” though, so it will probably take me a few more years to realize the fruition of my dreams.
NDM: Then when you finally realized that you are "only awareness". At this point what kind of a vasana load did you have?
Braying Jack Cass: Oh, I had a full load. Quite a load. A pants load.
NDM: Can you please explain the difference between sense of being awareness and finally only awareness?
Braying Jack Cass: I could, but I doubt that you’re intelligent enough to understand it, so what’s the point, really?
NDM: On page 16 of your book entitled, One. Essential Writings on Nonduality, Sri Ramana talks about the importance of vasana-kshya. The destruction of vasanas. Do you believe it is possible to be Self Realized, to be liberated, (moksha) without destroying these vasanas?
Braying Jack Cass: Vasanas are very fragile, like a Chinese vase. And I’m like a donkey in a China shop. So, many vasanas were destroyed in the process.
NDM: What would you say to someone who was saying they were liberated but were still acting out on their vasanas for violence, and saying they are not the doer/perpetrator. That it is God that is the doer/perpetrator of this violence?
Braying Jack Cass: I would say, “Wise up, stop acting like a schmuck.”
NDM: Ok, let me put it another way. Sri Ramana said: ‘For those who are very attached to their filthy bodies, all the study of Vedanta will be as useless as the swinging of the goat’s fleshy beard unless, with the aid of Divine Grace, their studies lead them to subdue their egos.’ Sri Adi Shankaracharya says: The first step to Liberation is the extreme aversion to all perishable things, then follow calmness, self-control, forbearance, and the utter relinquishment of all work enjoined in the Scriptures. Do you see it this way or is anyone fit for this, no matter how they behave or are acting out?
Braying Jack Cass: I really like that “goat’s fleshy beard" analogy. That’s pretty cool. He could have also said, “donkey’s filthy nutsack.” That would have been cool too.
NDM: Ok, as far as divine grace but how about being fit to practice atma vichara? Sri Adi Shankaracharya says: 69. The first step to Liberation is the extreme aversion to all perishable things, then follow calmness, self-control, forbearance, and the utter relinquishment of all work enjoined in the Scriptures. Sri Ramana Maharshi also says: ‘Only to such a mind which has gained the inner strength of one-pointedness, Self-enquiry will be successful. But a weak mind will be like wet wood put into the fire of jnana-vichara ‘If the aspirants have not one-pointed mind, which is possible for him who has pure mind full of sattva, dispassion, discrimination, etc., Self-enquiry is impossible.’
Braying Jack Cass: Stop the name dropping, please. What do YOU say?
NDM: What are your thoughts on neo advaita saying that there is No morality. No right or wrong. No meaning? Please See the interview with Suzanne Foxton.
Braying Jack Cass: I think that Suzanne Foxton is kind of cute. Is that immoral to say? I wish there were more cute, female non-dual gurus. Enough of these sweaty guys, with their scratchy beards, reeking of patchouli.
NDM: Yes, but Avadhuta Gita is also reading material meant for the use of advanced students.
Braying Jack Cass: True. One should only read the Avadhuta Gita after having read “I Am That” for the hundredth time. If the spine is still intact, you haven’t read it enough. One of the most spiritually-advanced people I’ve ever met had it held together by duct tape. Now that’s dedication!
NDM: The Ashtavakra Gita is also from the absolute level.
Braying Jack Cass: Yes, it absolutely is. Luckily, I only live half in the absolute. My left half. That’s why I lurch when I walk.
NDM: Yes on this absolute level there is no right or wrong. But what about on the relative level.
Braying Jack Cass: My relatives are absolutely wrong, at all times. A bunch of meat-eating Republicans. They think I’m some kind of freak. That’s actually the only thing they’re right about.
NDM: Dattatreya is considered by some to be the predecessor of the Aghori tradition. The tantric left hand path. Are you saying that neo- advaita is a new western left hand path of the Aghori? That Tony Parsons and Suzanne Foxton, Jeff Foster are some kind of neo advaitic tantric Aghori? Breaking all taboos and violating traditions?
Braying Jack Cass: Taboos, schmaboos. Ok, seriously, enough of this gibberish. I’m going to go for a walk in the woods…
*all of the Non-Duality Magazine questioins are real, I just substituted in my own answers