The Ariyan Vocation


The Ariyan Vocation is jump-started with two essential variables—Samatha (unshakable calm) and Vipassanā (clear-headed gnosis). Without them one remains bound to patterns of contingency—forever linked with samsaric strings of irrationality and chaotic consequential behaviors. Beings of a nobler-kind are like lotus-flowers that rise above the muck and mire that line the byways of those who are forever linked with ignoble enterprises.

The essential, rather, is to confront a man with a relentless analysis of himself, of the conditioned nature of common existence in this world, or any other world, and to ask him: “Can you say: this am I? Can you really identify yourself with this? Is it this that you wish?” This is the moment of fundamental testing, this is the touchstone for distinguishing the “noble beings” from average beings; it is here that they are separated according to their natures; it is thus that their vocations are decided. The test in Buddhism has various stages: from the most immediate forms of experience the disciple proceeds to higher levels, to supersensible horizons, to universality, to celestial worlds,” where the question is repeated: Are you this? Can you identify yourself with this? Can you satisfy yourself in this? Is this all that you wish? The noble being always ends by answering in the negative. And then the “revolution” occurs. The disciple leaves his home, renounces the world, and takes the ascetic path. (The Doctrine of Awakening, pg.76)

The way forward to being an Ariyan-renunciate is based on Right-Gnosis that is accompanied with a sense of “transcendental dignity”.  This does not consist in a morbid rejection of mortality (likened to sickly, pallid and shriveled-up monastics) but rather a deeply rooted inner-realization that all that appears to be is inadequate to a higher and nobler enterprise. 

On the path of awakening, the point of departure is positive: it is not the forcible bending of a human being who is only conscious of being a man, aided and abetted by religious images and apocalyptic, messianic, or superterrestrial visions; it is rather, an impulse that springs from the supernatural element in oneself that-although it has been obscured during the passage of time-still survives in “noble beings” beyond their samsāric nature…

These are the beings who, according to a text, gradually realize that the world unveiled by ascesis is their natural place, “the land of their fathers,” and that the other world-this world-is, instead, a foreign land to them. (ibid, pg.76)

For the Ariyan one’s natural place to be is with the spirit of the Tathagatas and not with the spirit of the father of lies. Mara’s dominion is forever a foreign land and the ‘heroic-choice’ is to not self-identify with Mara’s samsaric-states but to continually Recollect the Ariyan’s ‘True-Self’ that forever precedes the mark of the beast…

Buddhism does not say: the “I” does not exist-but rather: one thing only is certain, that nothing belonging to samsaric existence and personality has the nature of “I.” This is explicifly stated in the texts…

This is the scheme. The Buddha repeatedly makes his questioner recognize that the bases of common personality-materiality, feeling, perception, the formations, consciousness-are changeable, impermanent, and nonsubstantial. After which, the question is asked: Can what is impermanent, changeable, and nonsubstantial be considered thus: this is mine, this am I, this is my self? The answer is always the same-as if it were perfectly natural and obvious-Certainly not, Lord. The conclusion is then more or less of this type: “All matter, all feeling, all perception, all formations, all consciousness, past, present, or future, internal or external, gross or subtle, low or high, far or near, all should be considered, in conformity with reality and with perfect wisdom, thus: `This is not mine, this am I not, this is not my self.’ Thus considering, the wise, noble disciple does not identify himself with materiality, does not identify himself with feeling, does not identify himself with perception, does not identify himself with the formations, does not identify himself with consciousness. Not identifying himself, he is detached. Being detached, he is freed.” (ibid, pg.78)

This Higher Self-Realization remains the fundamental reference point for the Ariyan-Buddhist. All else is stuffed with a ‘perennial insufficiency’.

It is thus that “the noble sons moved by confidence” recognize their vocation and come to apprehend the “Ariyan quest”: “Thus, O disciples, a man, himself subject to birth, observing the misery of this law of nature, seeks that which is without birth, the incomparable safety, extinction; himself subject to decay, observing the misery of this law of nature, seeks that which is without decay, the incomparable safety, extinction; himself subject to death, observing the misery of this law of nature, seeks that which is without death, the incomparable safety, extinction; himself subject to pain and to agitation, observing the misery of this law of nature, seeks that which is without pain, the without-agitation, the incomparable safety, extinction; himself subject to stain, observing the misery of this law of nature, seeks that which is without stain, the incomparable safety, extinction. This, O disciples, is the Ariyan quest. (ibid, pg.81)

For the Ariyan Buddhist the “extinction” referenced here refers to deathlessness. And the ultimate quest is for the Deathless Unborn Buddha Mind—the Mind of the Ariya, the Mind that is impervious to the born, the created and the conceived. Evola insists that the road towards ‘pantheistic promiscuity’ mars the quest for the Unborn. He speaks of a those who cling to ‘pseudo-mysticisms’, who confuse momentary-experiential sensations with what is won through hard-core Buddha-gnosis that brings clarity of Mind and NOT feelings based on flimsy short-lived naturalistic episodes of the clouded-mind—mistaking astral-impressions for the Imageless surety of the Unborn. Evola would consider all of today’s New-Age philosophies as mere puff-balls that, once squeezed, reveal their lack of any Substantial Essence of the One and Absolute. ‘Strict Ascesis’ is what is required on the hard-won awakening path of the Ariya.

In reference to the One and Absolute, any ‘personal god, as pure existence, himself belongs to manifestation and cannot therefore be called absolutely unconditioned.’ (pg.84)  Indeed, all the six-realms of impermanence are exactly that—lacking any substantiality of the unconditioned—they are ‘conditioned-realms’; this includes the realms of the gods. The gods are conditioned with karmic attributes and when their karma has run-out, they too will experience rebirth in the realms of the impermanent. This also includes the devas:

Divine entities (deva) exist in their hierarchies like those of the angels of Western theology, but they are not immortal beings. Although their existence may be indefinitely long compared with the life of a man (devia dighāyukā) yet even for them there will be jarāmarana, decline and dying. (ibid, pg. 69)

Thus the following is indispensable for those who adhere to the Ariyan Path:

Here, then, is one of the extreme points in the test of the vocations: not to crave even the “highest of all lives”-not only to pass from this shore to the other, but to apprehend that which lies beyond both. The words of the Awakened One are: “Nature, the gods, the lord of generation, Brahmā, the Resplendent Ones, the Powerful Ones, the Ultrapowerful Ones, all things, I have known, how unsatisfying are all things: this have I recognized and I have renounced all things, abdicated from all things, detached myself from all things, foresworn all things, disdained all things. And in this, O Brahma, not only am I your equal in knowledge, not only am I not less than you, but I am far greater than you,” And the words: “This is not mine, This am I not, this is not my self” must be said by the “noble son” for the whole of that world too. It is still “samsāra.” (ibid, pg.87)

In conclusion of this chapter it is necessary to point out that the ascetical-ways of those with an Ariyan Vocation are classically ‘free from spiritualized and sanctified masochisms’. (ibid, pg.91) However, this must not lead one under a false-assumption and illusion that the way is barren of any ascetical-discipline. The ariyan-adept needs to develop ‘exceptional inward energies’ that fine-tune the Spirit of Recollection that alone empowers one to discern the true from the false. The remaining chapters in this series highlight what Evola designates as the “Practicum”, or those spiritual-techniques that will fine-tune for the ariyan adept those two essential variables: Samatha and Vipassanā.

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