The World’s Greatest Unpublished Spiritual Book
Adi Da adapts philosophy’s venerable dialogue form to create an extended dramatic conversation between the Avataric Sage Raymond Darling and his self-proclaimed disciple (and unconfessed captor), the grotesquely obese “Great Fool” Evelyn Disk. Through their discussion of the nature and requirements of ultimate Realization of the non-dual Divine Reality, Adi Da ventures nothing less than to initiate us—if only for the brief time of its performance—into the highest truths of Divine Self-Realization, while simultaneously confronting us with the hypocrisies, false views, delusions, and outright lies whereby we would falsify, make a scapegoat of, and ultimately destroy the means and bearer of that very Gift.
Thus, The Scapegoat Book performs a function in relation to The Mummery Book and The Happenine Book much the same as the eighteenth chapter of the Bhagavad Gita (the “bible” of Hinduism)—in which Krishna has the Warrior-Prince Arjuna step aside from his epochal battle with the Kauravas for an extended moment to consider the essence of spiritual truth—does for that book. In both works, the central issue at hand is our willingness to renounce the entire patterned conceit that is our egoity in direct relationship to the Realizer, whose blessing guidance and grace we judge to be the sole and absolutely necessary means of our spiritual salvation. By itself, however, such renunciation is not sufficient for Realization. Without an awakening to perfect knowledge, it becomes mere self-denial. Thus, “the necessary circumstance of Truth—Self-Revealed, by Avatar” it is only found “as perfect re-coincidence, between the all of true renunciation and the What that is, alone, true liberation, in the Self-“Bright” singularity of perfect-knowledge-only here.” One glaring difference between the two epics, however, is that the Bhagavan Gita’s Arjuna is a magnificently disciplined nobleman who has spent his life in preparation for his moment of testing, while this work’s interlocutor, Evelyn Disk, is a supremely self-indulgent spiritual poseur who, were it not for the fact that we live in the “End-Time” of universal cultural dissolution, would have otherwise never even be given access to the true teaching.
In point of fact, Adi Da Samraj bases The Scapegoat Book on a classic text of early Advaita Vedanta, the Ashtavakra Gita. Although he has long viewed the Ashtavakra Gita as perhaps the foremost of but a handful of traditional spiritual texts that epitomize the truth of transcendent Consciousness Itself, the author had never been satisfied with any of its English translations, including the version published by The Dawn Horse Press, in 1982, to which he contributed an extensive preface. Rather than simply offer his own new translation of the text, however, Adi Da decided to absorb and freely render its first sixteen chapters into the corresponding chapters of The Scapegoat Book. In the process, the venerable scripture receives a complete, and rather surprising, makeover.
Adi Da is justly renowned for his free renderings of passages from traditional texts, which always seem to improve on the original while serenely divining and preserving their deepest sense. Again and again while preparing this introduction, I found myself highlighting one and yet another passage in The Scapegoat Book that seemed to me to exemplify this point. They became so many that I can make my case almost by choosing at random. Compare, for example, the Ashtavakra Gita, Chapter 10, verse 2:
Look upon friends, lands, wealth, houses, wives, presents, and other such marks of good fortune, as a dream or a juggler’s show, lasting only a few days.
with Adi Da’s rendition in Chapter 10, verse 3 of his book:
Whatever can be desired, or, by means of seeking, actively achieved, is an ephemera, a temporary appearance, that quickly and inevitably passes out of life and sight. As if by a cruel magician’s trick, the heart’s companions come and go. All things and others of delight or love—whether friend, or lover, or acquired wealth, or property, or valuables of any kind—all are the brief diversions of the daily days, and all are dreamed away in a single, sudden night of inadvertence in the while. This fleshly cutted insult, so harshly indented by the virulent molecule of known desire, must make the knower know itself—and instantly, and perfectly so.