It seems that Dennis Waite
and his fellow Traditional Advaitists have been
challenging the validity of something they have
decided to call “Neo
Advaita” or, it has to be said, their particular
interpretation of it!
I have been asked to comment because The Open
Secret communication seems to have been their main
target and so, of course, there can only be a response
from this apparent “perception”.
So right away I am puzzled at any attempt to make
a comparison between two perspectives which simply
do not meet. Dennis Waite’s works are an
excellent expression of the fundamental principles
that generate the majority of traditional and contemporary
dualistic teachings. They are, in simple terms,
rooted in the belief that there is something called
a seeker (one) that can attain something else called
enlightenment (two). The Open Secret recognises
the relative as the absolute appearing and form
as formlessness . . . there is not two! And so,
everything is already the unconditional expression
of wholeness, including the belief that it isn’t.
Traditional Advaita is a teaching of becoming,
The Open Secret is not, but it exposes the one
primary misconception that is the mother of many
others. It also attempts to describe the nature
of “what is” rather than teach what
It seems that Dennis Waite does not recognise
the difference and continuously confirms his belief
that there is an individual who can attain enlightenment.
So, I will not respond to these criticisms with
any counter arguments, but will only try to demonstrate
the futility of comparison.
Presuming that Dennis Waite accurately represents
something he calls Traditional Advaita, he confirms
his belief and experience in the reality of the
constant existence of an individual with free will
and the ability to choose and bring about consequence.
The Open Secret recognises that the belief and
experience of a central “I” or a “me” or
a “self” is an assumed inconstant state.
Out of this one adopted belief in individuality
arises many other beliefs, including self-autonomy,
the story, time, purpose, destiny, deity and karma.
Individuality is the transient appearance of wholeness
seeming to be part of itself that feels separate
from wholeness and can only apparently seek to
be whole. But a part can never know the whole.
It is a metaphor.
Dennis Waite believes and recommends that, in
order to resolve the real and constant sense of
separation and become enlightened, the individual
should choose to follow a progressive spiritual
path. This path involves practice, meditation,
self-enquiry and the eradication of ego and ignorance
through a clear understanding of the scriptures
and the guidance of a teacher.
The Open Secret recognises that the above beliefs
and recommendations are generated out of an assumed
and inconstant sense of being a separate individual
who needs to attain something called enlightenment.
It is also recognised that an investment in the
above recommendations can reinforce and maintain
the assumed sense of being an individual who can
resolve its sense of being separate.
Dennis Waite confirms that enlightenment is something
that can be described in words, and attained and
known by the individual mind when it acquires the
knowledge that there is only a non-dual reality.
The Open Secret recognises that there is no such
thing as enlightenment or liberation, or an individual
that can become enlightened or liberated. These
are all ideas that come and go within the individual
story. When the assumed sense of being separate
seems to collapse, already there is only the constant
and unknowable wonder of being.
The Open Secret perception is that there is no
such thing as a “mind”. Thinking seems
to happen and sometimes thoughts formulate into
belief systems which are still experienced sporadically
by the apparent individual in what seems to be
a story in time. Absolute clarity also arises within
the story and is transient.
Traditional Advaita appears to make proper use
of logic, reason, belief and experience, rational
explanation, truth, and traditional wisdom, all
directed towards helping the seeker along the path
to their enlightenment.
The Open Secret’s apparent communication
is illogical, unreasonable, unbelievable, paradoxical,
non-prescriptive, non-spiritual and uncompromising
and entirely without meaning or purpose. There
is no agenda or intention to help or change apparent
individuality. Its resonance is shared energetically,
not through the exchange of ideas. It is prior
to all teachings and yet eternally new. Belief
is seen as married to doubt, and experience as
a fluctuating personal state. The Open Secret does
not recognise anything as being “the truth” nor
does it see how something called Traditional Advaita
could be anything other than a complex collection
Traditional Advaita is a teaching about that which
can be known. The Open Secret illuminates the myth
of separation and points to that which can’t
Surely an unbiased view of these two “perspectives” would
immediately recognise that they do not meet.
However, it seems obvious that Dennis does not
recognise the difference, and is also unable
to comprehend, even intellectually, the principle
and implication of individual absence. One of
his recommendations is that the aspiring so-called
spiritual teacher should ask themselves if they
are truly enlightened?! How can he see any possible
connection between this idea and The Open Secret
communication? He probably still believes that
these differing perspectives are “ours” and
that Tony Parsons is an individual who tells
other individuals that they are enlightened,
and so there is nothing to do.
Either there is resonance or not and, because
the ineffable cannot be understood and therefore
controlled, it can seem threatening to the apparent
seeker. Consequently any attempt at expression
of the indefinable has to be rejected or misinterpreted.
What often emerges is a reconfiguring which can
be believed, and is safe, and which offers hope
and purpose to the seeker.
Dogmas, doctrines and progressive paths which
promise eventual enlightenment, or Nirvana, or
the Kingdom of Heaven, through sacrifice, discipline,
refinement and purification of the self, appeal
tremendously to that within the seeker which feels
unworthy. Hence, the power of classic religion
and teachings of becoming. Traditional Advaita
is just another one of these.
Of course, for any apparent seeker who believes
in self-autonomy and the seeming reality of needing
to climb a spiritual mountain, Dennis Waite’s
work seems a logical, sound and reassuringly complicated
instruction manual to follow. However, what does
devalue this apparent testimony to “the truth” is
its seemingly prejudiced portrayal of so-called “neo
Advaitans” which appears to be mainly based
on hearsay, wishful thinking and the misinterpretation
of quotations taken out of context.
Of course there is a lot of dualistic nonsense
broadcast under the non-dual Advaita banner. A
relentless regurgitation of the idea that there
is “no-one”, or that everything is
fine because it is only arising as “all there
is”, is nothing more than a replacement of
one set of beliefs for another.
Words can only ever point to the inexpressible,
and anyone who is concept-bound can nit and pick
and tut their way through every word of this response
with the sole purpose of seeing nothing more than
that which they believe to be “right or wrong”.
It is what happens . . . apparently.
Isn’t it wonderful that all of this is already
only the unconditional expression of wholeness
appearing as much ado about nothing.
See the response
from Dennis Waite.
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