Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

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Aloka
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Aloka » Wed Apr 16, 2014 11:07 pm

tiltbillings wrote:The video creeped me out a bit

Woo, me too!

It also reminded me of conversations with friends when high on wacky baccy, back in my student days at Uni.(Not something I do now)

.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kasina » Thu Apr 17, 2014 12:48 am

Linda Clair wrote:“Enlightenment is not a state of mind. It is the realisation of love…”


... Oy vey... :roll:
"This world completely lacks essence;
It trembles in all directions.
I longed to find myself a place
Unscathed — but I could not see it."


Sn 4.15 PTS: Sn 935-951 "Attadanda Sutta: Arming Oneself"

"You will be required to do wrong no matter where you go... This is the curse at work, the curse that feeds on all life..."

Wilbur Mercer in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby David N. Snyder » Thu Apr 17, 2014 1:14 am

From the first video, first line:

Linda Clair wrote:What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? The meaning of life is to discover why we are here.


Circular reasoning fallacy.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Viscid » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:05 pm

Had the opportunity to briefly go through her videos, and they're not as creepy as I expected. The first one is because she has those long pauses..

I've also noticed this very thread is the third search result (at least for me) when Googling 'Linda Clair.' Any prospective student looking into her is probably going to read this thread over.. so if we're going to criticize her, I think she deserves better than the nit-picking we're currently providing. I'm not even sure what business it is of ours when she doesn't claim to be Theravadin or even to teach Buddhism. She should be free to teach however and whatever she wants for whatever cost, as long as she isn't exploiting anyone or causing harm.

Regardless,

I think much of what we find irksome is
A) her guru-like authority which she founds upon a tenuous enlightenment and
B) the vacuousness (and derivativeness-- it looks like she read a lot of Adyashanti) of her teaching and perhaps
C) her suspiciously high prices which betray our expectations of enlightened selflessness

If anyone wants to elaborate, I think it's a worthwhile exercise.
Last edited by Viscid on Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kasina » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:21 pm

Viscid wrote:C) her suspiciously high prices which betrays our expectations of enlightened selflessness


The prices themselves betray her claims of selflessness... What I mean to say is, if she really has transcended her ego, why would she need to be materially satisfied beyond basic needs? Further, does she have any other means of income? If this is her only means, that would only raise my suspicions ever more.

Perhaps she has some sort of attainment, or is at least very convinced she has... Though she's very clearly still caught up in egocentric desires.

If I were looking at her as a perspective student, even as a new ager (which I'm guilty of once being), I'd be very doubtful and probably look elsewhere. :shrug:

:anjali:
"This world completely lacks essence;
It trembles in all directions.
I longed to find myself a place
Unscathed — but I could not see it."


Sn 4.15 PTS: Sn 935-951 "Attadanda Sutta: Arming Oneself"

"You will be required to do wrong no matter where you go... This is the curse at work, the curse that feeds on all life..."

Wilbur Mercer in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby SamKR » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:29 pm

I concur with you, Viscid.

There are numerous other neo-advaita type spiritual teachers who unhesitantly claim enlightenment (of their definitions) and charge monies for teaching or sell books. What intrigues me is that their experiences and realizations are very similar to each-other. I believe most of them are indeed "enlightened" to certain truths although their definition of final enlightenment is very different from that of the Buddha's Dhamma. Why only pick one person to criticize?

Kasina wrote:
Linda Clair wrote:“Enlightenment is not a state of mind. It is the realisation of love…”


... Oy vey... :roll:

Realization of the true and ultimate "love" is indeed an aspect of enlightenment in many nondual circles.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kasina » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:43 pm

SamKR wrote:I concur with you, Viscid.

There are numerous other neo-advaita type spiritual teachers who unhesitantly claim enlightenment (of their definitions) and charge monies for teaching or sell books. What intrigues me is that their experiences and realizations are very similar to each-other. I believe most of them are indeed "enlightened" to certain truths although their definition of final enlightenment is very different from that of the Buddha's Dhamma. Why only pick one person to criticize?


You make a good point, but I'm sure other must have been criticized here before? If not, I'd be surprised.

SamKR wrote:
Kasina wrote:
Linda Clair wrote:“Enlightenment is not a state of mind. It is the realisation of love…”


... Oy vey... :roll:

Realization of the true and ultimate "love" is indeed an aspect of enlightenment in many nondual circles.


As someone who was a member of one such circle I am quite aware.
"This world completely lacks essence;
It trembles in all directions.
I longed to find myself a place
Unscathed — but I could not see it."


Sn 4.15 PTS: Sn 935-951 "Attadanda Sutta: Arming Oneself"

"You will be required to do wrong no matter where you go... This is the curse at work, the curse that feeds on all life..."

Wilbur Mercer in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby SamKR » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:50 pm

manas wrote:there are quite a few 'western', lay teachers of Dhamma and meditation who, while embodying the principles of Dhamma to a greater or lesser extent, still however make no such claims of 'enlightenment'. For example, Joseph Goldstein, Jack Kornfield or Sharon Salzburg, just to name a few. One's own enlightenment doesn't need to be proclaimed; just proclaiming the Dhamma is sufficient.

I am not sure about other teachers but Joseph Goldstein has stated about his experience of realization of the unborn - which is a certain level of enlightenment (sotapanna, at least?).
Last edited by SamKR on Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kasina » Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:50 pm

Although, I should mention for the sake of posterity, that many of those claims are sort of more like settled beliefs. For instance, one may take the idea that everything is one, and regard it as a very deep effectual insight, and carry it with them as such. It really does change the way people behave and think, but it's genuinely different from insights we come across in Buddhism, as it takes the form of an assumption, not as a direct truth...

Some do claim to receive it as direct truth, but this is usually with the aid of psychedelic drugs, or sudden visions. I have experienced a sudden vision like this before, but at the same time, it may have been sleep paralysis. All of the experiences tend to be the same: Cryptic, pointing towards non-duality, and the importance of unconventional love. Oh, and also living for the sake of living.
"This world completely lacks essence;
It trembles in all directions.
I longed to find myself a place
Unscathed — but I could not see it."


Sn 4.15 PTS: Sn 935-951 "Attadanda Sutta: Arming Oneself"

"You will be required to do wrong no matter where you go... This is the curse at work, the curse that feeds on all life..."

Wilbur Mercer in Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:37 pm

SamKR wrote:
manas wrote:there are quite a few 'western', lay teachers of Dhamma and meditation who, while embodying the principles of Dhamma to a greater or lesser extent, still however make no such claims of 'enlightenment'. For example, Joseph Goldstein, Jack Kornfield or Sharon Salzburg, just to name a few. One's own enlightenment doesn't need to be proclaimed; just proclaiming the Dhamma is sufficient.

I am not sure about other teachers but Joseph Goldstein has stated about his experience of realization of the unborn - which is a certain level of enlightenment (sotapanna, at least?).
Source?
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Apr 17, 2014 7:44 pm

Viscid wrote: She should be free to teach however and whatever she wants for whatever cost, as long as she isn't exploiting anyone or causing harm.
Of course she is, and if someone wants warm fuzzy, fluffy bunny and expensive "enlightenment," she would probably be a good option.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby SamKR » Thu Apr 17, 2014 9:19 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
SamKR wrote:
manas wrote:there are quite a few 'western', lay teachers of Dhamma and meditation who, while embodying the principles of Dhamma to a greater or lesser extent, still however make no such claims of 'enlightenment'. For example, Joseph Goldstein, Jack Kornfield or Sharon Salzburg, just to name a few. One's own enlightenment doesn't need to be proclaimed; just proclaiming the Dhamma is sufficient.

I am not sure about other teachers but Joseph Goldstein has stated about his experience of realization of the unborn - which is a certain level of enlightenment (sotapanna, at least?).
Source?

There is a spiritual documentary titled "With One Voice" which is available in Netflix and Amazon prime. Watch from 8:50 to 10:00. He just briefly mentions it.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby tiltbillings » Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:39 am

SamKR wrote:There is a spiritual documentary titled "With One Voice" which is available in Netflix and Amazon prime. Watch from 8:50 to 10:00. He just briefly mentions it.
He talks about that experience at more length here: http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/96/talk/2335/

It is one of those spontaneous experiences that point to, that suggest, something very different, some further possibility.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Kusala » Fri Apr 18, 2014 6:50 am

Viscid wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:Unfair? I don't think so, not at a $100 AUD per hour.


I'm willing to bet she caters to wealthy individuals who can afford it. I ask this question genuinely: Does that make her a bad teacher? Do good teachers necessarily have to teach at low cost to accommodate as many people as possible, or are they allowed to be so selective?


'One should not go about making a business out of the Dhamma' (Ud.66) http://sdhammika.blogspot.com/2010/03/p ... hamma.html
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Homage to the Buddha
Thus indeed, is that Blessed One: He is the Holy One, fully enlightened, endowed with clear vision and virtuous conduct, sublime, the Knower of the worlds, the incomparable leader of men to be tamed, the teacher of gods and men, enlightened and blessed.

Homage to the Teachings
The Dhamma of the Blessed One is perfectly expounded; to be seen here and now; not delayed in
time; inviting one to come and see; onward leading (to Nibbana); to be known by the wise, each for himself.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby fivebells » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:06 am

I was tutoring someone in Math recently, and making good money, then somehow it turned into tutoring about Buddhist meditation. I felt like I had to forgo charging him, once it became serious. I told him he's welcome to make donations, but haven't received any so far. :-)

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby seeker242 » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:15 am

David N. Snyder wrote:From the first video, first line:

Linda Clair wrote:What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? The meaning of life is to discover why we are here.


Circular reasoning fallacy.


Or, perhaps just a skillful means to direct people to investigate it more deeply for themselves, instead of asking someone else. :) I've heard zen masters say the same thing. But not because they are trying to tell people the meaning of life, but to help spur a students motivation, etc. Zen teachers are not really known for being "logical" :lol:

This Linda Clair person definitely has a "zen flavor". On her website it says "Although the meditation is based on basic Zen Buddhist practice, there are no religious teachings or rituals involved." Seems to me to be a type of "secular zen" so to speak.

It’s a state of not knowing – that’s what enlightenment is. And when you’re really fully immersed
in not knowing and not wanting to know, there can’t be any experience. There’s no time for any
experience.


A pretty typical zen view, even from the zen masters of old. Which is understandable being that she practiced at zen temples with zen masters. The "zen view" of enlightenment does not really go by the typical "4 stages" with "enlightenment" meaning the completion of all 4.

Chan Master Sheng Yen says "Ch'an expressions refer to enlightenment as "seeing your self-nature". But even this is not enough. After seeing your self-nature, you need to deepen your experience even further and bring it into maturation. You should have enlightenment experience again and again and support them with continuous practice. Even though Ch'an says that at the time of enlightenment, your outlook is the same as of the Buddha, you are not yet a full Buddha"

The description of this persons experience appear to be consistent with "Satori" often translated as "enlightenment". Satori is considered a "first step" or embarkation toward nirvana, not the final end. To view her statements in the context of a Theravada definition of enlightenment, is really to view it out of context IMO.

:anjali:

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby SamKR » Fri Apr 18, 2014 1:24 pm

tiltbillings wrote:
SamKR wrote:There is a spiritual documentary titled "With One Voice" which is available in Netflix and Amazon prime. Watch from 8:50 to 10:00. He just briefly mentions it.
He talks about that experience at more length here: http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/96/talk/2335/

It is one of those spontaneous experiences that point to, that suggest, something very different, some further possibility.

Thanks for the link. Interesting to know about his initial experiences in more details.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby David N. Snyder » Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:30 pm

seeker242 wrote:Or, perhaps just a skillful means to direct people to investigate it more deeply for themselves, instead of asking someone else. :) I've heard zen masters say the same thing. But not because they are trying to tell people the meaning of life, but to help spur a students motivation, etc. Zen teachers are not really known for being "logical" :lol:

This Linda Clair person definitely has a "zen flavor". On her website it says "Although the meditation is based on basic Zen Buddhist practice, there are no religious teachings or rituals involved." Seems to me to be a type of "secular zen" so to speak.


Yes, possibly. In my first post in this thread I mentioned how she is not enlightened according to the Theravada perspective since she is a lay woman. A lay person can attain enlightenment, but then ordains within 7 days according to Theravada. Also her teachers all appear to be lay people, whom she calls enlightened. As I mentioned previously, she wouldn't be considered enlightened according to Theravada, but could possibly use that term according to some other tradition. If that is true or not, is up to others from those traditions to decide. I was just answering from a Theravada perspective since this is a Theravada Buddhist forum and I personally resonate most toward the Suttas of the Pali Canon / Theravada.

If others from other traditions find her useful and a good teacher, good for them.

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby Digity » Sat Apr 19, 2014 4:39 am

I don't like this idea of having different versions of enlightenment for different traditions. The only form of enlightenment that matters is the Buddha's. So, to say that Linda is enlightened in her own way just seems wrong. If we do that we water down the term enlightenment. Frankly, I prefer the term awakened. If we state that Linda is not awakened in the sense taught by the Buddha then she's not awakened at all. End of story.
Samsara sucks. #samvega

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Re: Linda Clair - claims of being enlightened?

Postby tiltbillings » Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:20 am

SamKR wrote:
tiltbillings wrote:
SamKR wrote:There is a spiritual documentary titled "With One Voice" which is available in Netflix and Amazon prime. Watch from 8:50 to 10:00. He just briefly mentions it.
He talks about that experience at more length here: http://www.dharmaseed.org/teacher/96/talk/2335/

It is one of those spontaneous experiences that point to, that suggest, something very different, some further possibility.

Thanks for the link. Interesting to know about his initial experiences in more details.
You are welcome. If you haven't listen to the second part, it too is worth the listen: http://dharmaseed.org/teacher/96/talk/2567/

Joseph is an excellent, experienced teacher, and the value of these two talks is hearing a teacher talk about his own experiences.
This being is bound to samsara, kamma is his means for going beyond.
SN I, 38.

Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
People live in one another’s shelter.

dheamhan a fhios agam

"We eat cold eels and think distant thoughts." -- Jack Johnson


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