Avatar Adi Da in Hawaii in 2002

Definition of Terms

What do these words mean?


Not-caused, or not subject to the laws of cause and effect.

Conditional / Non-conditional

Avatar Adi Da distinguishes between two meanings of the word “reality”:

  1. He refers to reality as people ordinarily perceive it and participate in it as “conditionally manifested reality”. “Ordinary reality” is the complex “effect” of all kinds of “causes”, and, thus, “ordinary reality” can manifest only in accordance with whatever conditions are the case. Therefore, because “ordinary reality” is dependent on conditions, Avatar Adi Da describes it as “conditionally manifested”.
  2. In contrast to “conditionally manifested reality”, “Reality Itself” (with capital letters) is Avatar Adi Da’s reference to the Divine Reality, which is not in any sense dependent on conditions. Thus, Reality Itself is utterly “Non-conditional”. Avatar Adi Da states that Reality Itself is the “One and Only Self-Nature, Self-Condition, and Self-State” of every thing and every being in the universe.

Conscious Light

Avatar Adi Da defines Reality Itself as “Conscious Light”. By making this definition, he is communicating that the two essential characteristics of Reality are Awareness (or Consciousness) and Radiance (or Light). Furthermore, Avatar Adi Da states that Conscious Light is the essential nature (or the “One and Only Self-Nature, Self-Condition, and Self-State”) of every thing and every being in the universe.

Consciousness / Consciousness Itself

The “Real (Prior) Self-Nature, Self-Condition, and Self-State” of every being and thing—rather than the awareness associated with a conditional (and apparently separate) “point of view”.

Consider / Consideration

Avatar Adi Da describes a “consideration” about something as the exercise of in-depth discriminative intelligence that includes the following steps:

  1. Directing attention to examine anything in your life in a concentrated manner,
  2. Thoroughly examining it to the point of grasping all of its details,
  3. Understanding it in light of the detailed examination, and
  4. Changing your action, on the basis of that understanding.

Crazy Wisdom

In many esoteric sacred traditions, certain practitioners and Masters have been called “crazy”, “mad”, or “foolish”. In whatever tradition and time they appear, these individuals violate prevailing taboos (personal, social, religious, or even “spiritual”) either to instruct others or simply to express their own inspired freedom.

Cultural Governance

Ecclesiastical or sacred (as opposed to secular) governance.

Discriminative Intelligence

Avatar Adi Da states:

The function of intelligence must be made right, must be purified—such that it truly and rightly observes things, truly and rightly “considers” them, discriminates between Real and un-Real, or Non-conditional and conditional, and (by Means of My Divine Avataric Transcendental Spiritual Grace) Awakens to its fundamental capability. If that Grace-Given Awakening is to occur, a real course of ego-transcending practice must be embraced.

—Avatar Adi Da Samraj
My “Bright” Form


Being of the non-conditional nature of Conscious Light.

ego / ego- “I

The presumption of separate and separative existence, or the fundamental activity of “self”-contraction. Avatar Adi Da is communicating (by means of quotation marks) that, in Reality, there is no such thing as the separate “I” (or the separate “self”, or the ego), even though it is presumed to exist (and is perpetuated in day-to-day interactions) as a consequence of “self”-contraction.


Avatar Adi Da always approached the realm of sexuality and the realm of emotions as a single area of “consideration”. He indicated the fundamental interconnectedness of emotion and sex by consistently referring to it as the “emotional-sexual” aspect of life.

Enlightenment / Divine Enlightenment

Divine enlightenment (or most perfect realization) is a matter of the actual conversion of the entire being (body, emotion, mind, and breath) to the state of Divine Conscious Light Itself.

Esoteric / Exoteric

Avatar Adi Da describes esoteric practice as serving the realization of that which is beyond the apparently separate “self” or ego-“I”, whereas exoteric practice serves the consolation, improvement, or perpetuation of the apparently separate “self” or ego-“I”.

Forms of Agency

The means created by Avatar Adi Da during his lifetime through which his blessing presence would be felt and magnified, and through which a living spiritual relationship with him would always be possible. The forms of agency include his spiritually empowered hermitages and sanctuaries, his writings and discourses of philosophical and spiritual instruction, his works of visual art, his literary works, and the stories of his work to serve the enlightenment of beings.

Money, Food, and Sex

“Money, food, and sex” is Avatar Adi Da’s summary phrase encapsulating the foundation matters of human existence. “Money” is not simply “currency”, but all aspects of work, service, and the use of power and personal life-energy in relationships with others. “Food” is everything that sustains the body― nourishment, exercise, emotional support, and spiritual sustenance. And “sex” is not just sexual intercourse but everything related to emotional-sexual intimacy and interpersonal relationships.


The dictionary defines “mummery” as “a ridiculous, hypocritical, or pretentious ceremony, observance, or performance”. Avatar Adi Da uses the term “mummery” to describe all the activities of ego-bound beings, who are committed to the false view of separation and separativeness.


Avatar Adi Da taught that human beings exhibit mental patterning as well as patterning by genetic structures. Mental patterning is an elaborate “interior” pattern of words, memories, and presumptions which has its own kind of existence. People live habitually on the basis of their patterning. Enacting their genetic and mental patterning is generally all that people do. That complex pattern is bondage. In fact, the entire “world” is an automaticity of patterns patterning. If you become disenchanted with your own patterning and that of the world, then you look for something Greater.

Positive Disillusionment

Avatar Adi Da teaches that a clear understanding of the true nature of life results in what he calls “positive disillusionment”. To someone self-identified as a separate being, to be alive is to be vulnerable to threat, separation, loss, illness, and death. This understanding is not merely a negative viewpoint, although it can make people despair if they have no sense of something greater. Rather, it is the relinquishment of naive thinking, illusions, and inherently false presumptions about the nature of life. Positive disillusionment leads one to embrace a life of serious, ego-transcending spiritual practice.

Prior Unity

Avatar Adi Da states:

The world is a prior unity.

It is not that there is a unity yet to be established, which you must seek for and work on.

Unity is so.

—Avatar Adi Da Samraj
Prior Unity


Derived from the Latin “radix” (meaning “root”), “radical” principally means “irreducible”, “fundamental”, or “returning to the origin”. Thus Avatar Adi Da defines “radical” as “at-the-root”. Because Avatar Adi Da uses “radical” in this literal sense, it appears in quotation marks in his writings, in order to distinguish his usage from the common reference to an extreme (often political) view.

Real (Acausal) God / Real God

See “Reality Itself”


Avatar Adi Da considered his works of spiritual instruction, his literary works, and his works of visual art to be forms of “Reality-Communication”—means by which he communicated the nature of Reality Itself, or Truth Itself.

Reality / Reality Itself

Reality Itself, Truth Itself, and Real (Acausal) God—Avatar Adi Da frequently uses this group of three references to indicate that “Reality”, “Truth”, and “Real (Acausal) God” are synonymous terms, all of which point to “That Which Is Always Already The Case” (where “Always The Case” indicates what is eternally so, and “Already The Case” indicates what is inherently so).

“Self-Existing” and “Self-Radiant” are terms describing the two fundamental aspects of Reality Itself: Existence (or Being, or Consciousness) Itself, and Radiance (or Energy, or Light) Itself. “Self-Existing” is correlated to “Transcendental”, while “Self-Radiant” is correlated to “Spiritual”.

Realizer / Realization / Self-Realization

Realization is the process of perfectly transcending all conditional phenomena. One who truly realizes simply abides as the Divine Conscious Light Itself, and freely recognizes all phenomena (including body, mind, conditional “self”, and conditional world) as modifications of the same Divine Conscious Light.

Avatar Adi Da describes the realization of Truth (or Reality) as the state of awakening from the “dream of life”:

The world itself is not Truth—nor is life, nor psyche and body, nor death, nor experience. No event is, in and of itself, Truth. Everything that arises is an appearance to Consciousness Itself, a modification of the Divine Conscious Light That Is Always Already the Case.

All of this is a dream, if you like. It is an appearance in Consciousness Itself. Truth Is Very Consciousness Itself. Truth is to all of this what the waking state is to the dreaming state. If you awaken, you do not have to do anything about the condition you may have suffered or enjoyed in the dream state. What happened within the dream is suddenly not your present condition. It is of no consequence any longer, once you are awake.

If you persist in dreaming, and your “point of view” remains that of the dreamer (and the dreamer’s role within the dream), then your possible actions are numberless. But none of them will “work”. They will simply occupy you in the dream. They will modify the dream state, but no action in the dream is the equivalent of waking. There are simply forms of fascination, of occupation, of seeking—until you wake up.

Truth is simply Waking, No-illusion. It is not a condition within this appearance. It has nothing whatsoever to do with the mind, regardless of whether the mind is expanded or contracted.

There is One Who is Wide Awake while He Appears in the dream. By not supporting the dream, He Awakens others. He is the True Divine Guru. I Am That One.

—Avatar Adi Da Samraj
The Ancient Walk-About Way

Renunciate / Renunciation

Avatar Adi Da does not refer to renunciation as ego-based body- and life-denying asceticism. Instead, he refers to renunciation as “true and free renunciation”, in which the movement toward “self”-fulfillment through ordinary means inherently falls away because egoic “self”-identification with the body-mind-complex and its “objects” is transcended in love-bliss-communion with the Divine. He refers to such renunciation as not a search but rather as coincident or simultaneous with (and inherent in) Realization Itself.

Right-life Disciplines

Specific practices relative to all aspects of practical and relational life—including “money, food, and sex” and social relations—as well as a sacred life of meditation, worship, and service in cooperative association with other devotees of Avatar Adi Da. This life purifies, balances, and rejuvenates the entire being by means of the equanimity of devotional communion with Avatar Adi Da.

Ruchira Sannyasin Order

The Ruchira Sannyasin Order is the senior order of renunciates, the members of which practice Adidam at the most advanced levels.


“Sadhana” is Sanskrit for “spiritual practice”. Avatar Adi Da uses “sadhana” in the sense of “ego-transcending practice”.


The Sanskrit word “Samadhi” traditionally denotes various exalted states that appear in the context of esoteric meditation and Realization.

“self” and “not-self”

The primal illusion of human existence is that “I” is a “self” that is separate from everything and everyone else (or all that is “not-self”). As a means of pointing to the illusory nature of the “self”, Avatar Adi Da places these (lowercase) terms in quotation marks.


The fundamental presumption of separateness and the resulting activity of separation.

Transcendental Spiritual

A reference used by Avatar Adi Da indicating the unique nature of the process in his Avataric Company. He describes that all traditional forms of spirituality are practiced on the “platform” of identification with the body-mind-“self”. In contrast, the Transcendental Spirituality of Adidam is the Spiritual process that is founded in the transcending of identification with the body-mind-“self”.

“Transcendental” refers to the Consciousness(or “Self-Existing”) aspect of Reality, and “Spiritual” refers to the Energy (or “Self-Radiant”) aspect of Reality.

Truth / Truth Itself

See “Reality Itself”


The title “World-Friend” indicates Avatar Adi Da's free blessing-intention toward the world and all beings, human and non-human. The title “World-Friend” also suggests his disposition to speak to all in universal “friendship”, frankly and compassionately, always founded in sympathy and love.