One of the great dangers in any endeavor to live a spiritual life is self-deception. On one hand, one can deceive oneself concerning the motives of these endeavors. On another, one can avoid critically and objectively investigating the life and claims of whoever one accepts as one's "teachers" or exemplars, because an objective and unglamorized approach could be energy-consuming or even painful.
To be intellectually honest is to refuse to allow factors which are not intellectually sound, and even more which are the results of emotional wants, to interfere with one's thinking. It is to recognize for what they are and what they produce the factors of pride, fear, and of the immature longing for props to support one's dim understanding of transcendent facts and values. Without intellectual honesty the finest endeavors may miscarry. Glamor is the enemy--even if it is most often needed at the beginning of the spiritual quest to "fascinate" us into taking steps which arouse otherwise paralyzing instinctual or emotional fears. Needed as they may be at first, glamor and deceit must be overcome as soon as possible, or else spirituality turns into "psychism."
In considering these quotes I can see more clearly a necessary role in my development for having read through nearly all of the posts on the ex-Amma Yahoo group. I can also see how, after going through a period of enabling a sense of specialness (and thus, of "glamor") with respect to spiritual-seeker friends, I eventually came to reject my role as an enabler of those illusions. Yes, there was "learning" to be had through a period of apprenticeship in a phase characterized by "glamor," but the deeper lessons seem to involve the achievement of a more palpable sense of the dimensions of personal and collective shadow with respect to the spiritual path as carried out in the context of spiritual organizations.
Om Kreem Kalyai Namaha,