109. Eli Jaxon-Bear

Eli Jaxon-BearEli Jaxon-Bear was born Elliot J. Zeldow in Brooklyn, New York, in 1947. His eighteen-year spiritual path started in 1971, when he was a federal fugitive during the Vietnam war. In 1978, Kalu Rinpoche appointed him the president of the first Kagyu dharma center in Marin County. In 1982, he was presented with a Zen Teaching Fan at ChoShoJi Zen Temple in Japan.

After a search took him around the world and into many traditions and practices, his path and his search ended when he was pulled to India in 1990, where he met his final teacher, Sri H.W.L. Poonja. Confirming Eli’s realization, his teacher sent him back into the world to share his unique psychological insights into the nature of egoic suffering in support of self-realization.

Eli infuses the teaching with his teacher’s living transmission of silence. He presents a unique map of egoic identification as a vehicle for ruthless self-inquiry and final realization of true freedom. He dedicates his life to passing on the transmission of his teacher.

Eli currently meets people and teaches through the Leela Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to world peace and freedom through universal self-realization.
He is the author of Sudden Awakening into Direct Realization, (New World Library), The Enneagram of Liberation: From Fixation to Freedom, (Gangaji Foundation Press), and he is the editor of Wake Up and Roar: Satsang with H.W.L. Poonja, (Sounds True).

Interview recorded 2/5/2012

2nd interview with Eli

Video and audio below. Audio also available as a Podcast.

54 thoughts on “109. Eli Jaxon-Bear

  1. Hi Anatol, give thanks for the exchange.

    I am enjoying the adya link as well as Amma’s quotes. Still some ‘work/unfolding’ left to be done here regarding heart awakening so that is where my focus is.

    Yes, animal compassion (and vegetarianism) is something that i have been in touch with for 20 years now. So i couldnt agree more with your take on it..


  2. Thanks Jill for the background info on Mother Theresa. I now understand better how Eli made this evaluation of her. Yes, happiness, inward love and content would probably be a sign of knowing God . So she apparently was still very much a ‘seeker’/’a longer’. Still a great great human being and beautiful soul. I doubt that her motivations were ‘fear of God’ alone. She probably had a very open heart and the best intents.

    I fully agree with the notion that loving kindness can not be cultivated and practiced as a duty, but one can choose to stay mindful and observe oneself and one’s conditioning in going about daily life so as not to react as a mechanical conditioned robot but as a heartical being. And maybe it is the best preparation for a ‘full heart awakening’ experience, by shizeling slowly on this sense of separation.

    Later , )

  3. But i would still have to think that making the statement that ‘mother theresa’s journey has not even begun’ would be speculation. She might just be 1 life away from Liberation..who knows?

  4. A bit more reading that my mind wants to do these days..but yes, lets keep humble and know that whatever we think we have reached, is not a final ‘destination’. Wise men and women are of few words and much love. Lets live our daily life as an example of how deep our understanding is, and yes, choices and actions still do matter in the realtive realm.


  5. ‘Enlightenment’ as a final state is a myth. I see awakening as a continual process, ever refining perceptions and deepening. The initial awakening impulse takes the feeling of ‘life as a burden’ away and anihilates most fears, including the one of death. To think that ‘one has arrived’ because of that is a misconception, it is ego wanting to grasp on the ungraspable and make it his/her. Awakening is life, every minute. As michael Kewley says: ‘show me your Dhamma’, or show me your Love and compassion, so i can see where you are at.

  6. So tristan isnt awaken, neither is jill, anatol or rick (sorry if i dont mention everyone)..the personality or mind/body mechanism doesnt become ‘awaken’. What is realized is that we are nothing, everything, timeless, just an ‘isness’..many ways to describe it that seem to varry across the spectrum. That realization might just be an invitation to move from a self centered life to one of a life to ‘serve’ or help others. True Liberation is when there is absolutely no one left to take credit for any state. People who abide in that kind of realization probably dont spend too much time on forums and discussion boards , )

    From a ‘mildely awaken soul’ who’s understanding is ever deepening


  7. @Steve – “I agree with your assessment re: refinement – that clarity becomes more clear. My point is that any connection (cause and effect) between practice and refinement is in appearance only. Connection can only be “real” in duality. An apparent individual can apparently awaken, and then, never having really existed, progress (or regress) back to its own non-existence. In Non-Dual Reality nothing has ever been disconnected. Maybe we’re saying the same thing.”

    Non-Dual Reality has been grooving along just fine for all eternity, as apparent individuals and universes emerge and dissolve. Causes and effects between everything are appearances only. But in the world of appearance, they’re real enough. The connection (cause and effect) between practice and refinement is as “real” as the connection between any other relative phenomena. It makes no difference to the ultimate reality whether anyone realizes, refines, etc., but it sure makes a difference to us carbon units who do so.

  8. Anatol –
    I love your beautiful heart – It always shines through your writing…I can feel how much you care for others and the world from what you share…so thank you for that…

    Just one point I’d like to make and that is, it’s good to not have any firm ‘idea’ of what enlightenment might look like before it dawns, cause it may take you by surprise as to what actually occurs…It’s never what you expect it to be..and certainly not everyone turns out to be a saint you know – but what does happen is that whatever role you are given to play afterward, you do it with whole heart..

    My criteria for who is and who isn’t awake – if this even interests anyone – and this is just an observation based on many years of seeing people privately, and knowing many of the modern day teachers personally who claim awakening – is how much of the life is given over to something other than one’s own self-gratification…

    If one gets up every day and is still mostly involved with their own personal desires – even one’s spiritual desires – it would seem that not much dissolution has taken place…If we are truly dissolved, yet full, then we keep giving..quite naturally – expecting nothing in return..Most of the awake people I know, give of themselves, tirelessly..

    As far as refinement after the fact – I see that going on between awakening and enlightenment…There is the back and forth between me-ing and be-ing until the me-ing ceases…Things do fall away after the final death blow but it’s very subtle – so much so that it’s not readily apparent..might feel lighter in the body or some such thing..Without the witnessing vehicle that’s hard to tell..

    I haven’t spoken out publicly in 16 years because it never felt right to advertise and put up websites and also because one does need to marinate in this…But in lieu of doing an interview with Rick, I thought I’d post a few things to share some of what arose here..He encouraged me to do so..

    In working with seekers over the years privately, who get referred to me, it helps to be open and intimate with sharing ourselves..Most seekers I encounter these days don’t want more abstractions, or more gurus on pedestals – they want a friend who has traversed the path – to help them over hurdles – help them close the gap between duality and unity..which intimacy and honesty helps to do – and to bring some clarity to a very confused spiritual marketplace..

    This is the purpose of satsang – public and private – to get up close and personal with one who is awake in order to see our own reflections more accurately…In the presence of the manifest satguru, it’s hard to lie to oneself about what is happening within and without..

    Yes there are false teachers out there – but if our heart is sincere – we don’t attract them…When Papaji was asked about all these false teachers, he’d say, “They are there for the false seekers..let them be.”

    Loved Braco this weekend – thank you so much for posting his schedule..I sent your info on him out to a few hundred people on my list and many enjoyed his loving gaze thanks to you..

    I’ve always felt that healing was the missing ingredient in spirituality…so many ill teachers..past and present.. despite their profound awakeness..So if Braco’s gift can penetrate the deep subtle bodies and truly heal, what a blessing..

    Sure wish he’d been around 10 years ago when my beloved husband of 26 years, my father, and only brother were dying…not to mention the community of firefighters and first responders that were also dying in the neighborhood, and are still dying from the air quality at the site that day….(Our community is about a mile from where the towers stood unfortunately),…

    So just wanted to touch base with you..
    Be well..

  9. Sno – fascinating stuff – As you say, whatever is meant to be is meant to be – can’t force anything..My only wish for friends is that they are at peace…and if that’s where you are, and you feel all is well, then no outside teacher is needed..carry on..

    It’s been my experience that much work is done on people at night – and thank God for that.. Although it can be disruptive, the full blast of energy manifesting during the day is not tolerable for most people…I had both for years – was completely non-functional -surprised I’m still standing..
    The way of the heart is much easier on the body than the energetic path, but then again we don’t really get to choose..

    It seems to me if we’re talking angels, that one of the higher chakras has been pierced…that’s how most visitations take place..back of the head is prolly open – and either actual seeing or sensing other dimensions will occur when that happens…..

    I will say that much of that kind of thing usually stops after coming to rest in the peace of the self..meaning, resting prior to and beyond all phenomena..in the cave of the heart – because the mind is no longer creating anything..either nightly or in waking state..

    I think it’s interesting that you feel the final meeting will be with a feminine manifestation…Many do have a sense of which form will show up…Being married at the time I came to satsang, I almost felt it would be cheating on my husband to surrender to a male form…but in the end it doesn’t matter – you’re not surrendering the body -to another body – and people aren’t what they appear to be anyway…I don’t identify as a male or a female these days and don’t see the teachers as such, just energy, but I understand the practical dilemma you present in terms of a partner..

    I find it sooo interesting that in speaking to many seekers over the years that often, one partner is supremely interested in this and one isn’t..not sure why it works out like that..It shouldn’t stop anyone from pursuing final Truth of course, but sometimes it does..for various reasons..

    My husband meditated for many years- more for stress reduction than anything else – but wasn’t really interested in pursuing satsang…Then Pamela showed up in our lives and he was smitten – caught fire – and thanks to her, he woke up before the diagnosis..

    Through the dream they come – all of it unplanned..but welcome for sure..

  10. Snow… i seem to recall you had a significant dream about Amma… here’s a devotee … Advait… (who was interviewed by Rick)… with many dreams… too many for me to read all… so just in case this might be of interest… here they are… http://www.ammadreams.blogspot.com/

    Jill… thanks for your comments… have you met Stuart Schwartz… a friend of Pamela & also student of Robert…

  11. Yes Anatol – met Stuart about 10 years ago when he first started giving satsang in NY…I didn’t particularly resonate energetically, but many do…He was particularly warm to my sons after my husband passed – hosted them at a retreat in Sedona – and for that I’ll always be grateful..

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