The 2%

If scientists are right and we are only using 2% of our brain, that means there is a 98% left. Is nature that inefficient that it would waste 10 pounds weight on an organ? In any species on the planet you can observe the organism uses its maximum capabilities to survive and function in life. Why are human beings different?

This “If” as regards science is a big if. UG said that pure science is mysticism. There is no concept employed by science that has not been cooked up by the collective ideas of previous science which means it necessarily operates out of the past. There is no way science can measure life. It is a series of speculations about the way things may or may not operate in the world according to the two percent of the brain being put to the task of understanding.

The momentum of this 2% is enormous. Even Jiddu Krishnamurti emphasized that point. UG went even further, saying it is impossible for that 2% to be there if the 98% kicks in.

The only thing left from an encounter with UG is that slowing down that 2% mechanism may or may not occur. This 98% is not in the field of thought, nor under the influence of thought. It pumps our blood and inhales and exhales without any theoretical model, or idea of how to do that. So if that slowing down happens, what will take place in the body will have to be tested by the individual since there is no way of confirming it from the outside.

UG made a point of emphasizing that the most important thing was for the individual to throw away the crutches of the 2% and stand in life alone, or all-one. This sounds simple but eliminates most of his audience since it means giving up without volition and not being in a position to sell anything any more, any longer, to the corrupt 2%. I am convinced that any ambition to achieve that enlightenment promised by the 2% jokers in the spiritual business, no matter who they are, is the expression of material greed.

UG never took a dime for any speech. He never allowed organizations to spring up around him. When he died, his body waited in line for 7 days in an Italian crematorium to be burned anonymously. His ashes were dumped anonymously by a friend in an undisclosed location. This final exit was orchestrated by him and flies in the face of all ceremony, protocol and tradition. His residences were so temporary that it will be impossible to set up a shrine for him for a long time to come. If someone does that, and inevitably they will, (set up a shrine for him or in his memory), it is the expression of that 2%.

UG’s only job in this world was to convey that are all capable of standing on our own but the fear of doing it stands in the way. Deifying him not only allows one to avoid dealing with the core essence of what he had to say, it defeats the purpose of what he was telling us.

I know this from my own experience. I see my fear of this happening more clearly every day and it does me no good to ‘understand or observe’ it. As long as I am afraid to let go of what I know, I am stuck in the 2%.

“Fear of losing what you know is the only thing.”

Enjoy your 2%.

Or don’t.

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33 Responses to The 2%

  1. Branko says:

    Thanks Louis… I was reading Nisargadatta early this morning when i found your new post in my inbox. I don’t usually read blogs because the 2% expresses itself in 99.99% of every/thing ๐Ÿ™‚
    I was actually reading the section in ‘I AM That’ that is in reference to U.G.
    U.G. and Maharaj have been my training wheels, helping me to take off and “ride” all on my own. “Crutches” are deeply held beliefs/fixed positions, were as “training wheels” are lightly held and let go off when one can ride… ๐Ÿ˜‰ Here is a part of the section i read when Maharaj is in dialogue with U.G.’s friend.

    M: All this weighing, selecting, choosing, exchanging – it is all shopping in some ‘spiritual’ market.
    What is your business there? What deal are you out to strike? When you are not out for business, what is the use of this endless anxiety of choice? Restlessness takes you nowhere. Something prevents you from seeing that there is nothing you need. Find it out and see its falseness.

    • Janet Brown says:

      Joking aside, here is a quote from chapter 52 that address some points in your post…

      [Watching how UG handled himself, it was clear that he’d gone out of his way to see to it that the enshrining could not happen at least physically, but in an video Bob shot the year before, he said it had already happened a long time ago. The enshrining is a way of putting him into a religious, or spiritual frame and bypassing the content of what he was saying. No matter how he lived, his words will have to be twisted to suit the needs of the traditions. Enough people told me โ€œUG is saying what they all say.โ€ Listening to him was a different experience, but he always said, โ€œYou listen because you think I am saying what the others said.โ€

      Addressing that ‘frame’ of spirituality, he said to Bob, โ€œAre you ready to throw away the frame?โ€ I think he meant the death it would entail to do so. For me the company of UG was a benefit to enhance my life. I wouldn’t have hung around if I wasn’t convinced I was getting something. The thing is, what I came for I didn’t get, and what I didn’t know I wanted or needed, I got.]

      • dear janet,
        ug said, you see nothing’ ,that is you interpose your thoughts between yourself and what is before you and distort the object and when adi sankara and buddha stopped one step before ug or rather they failed to see what ug saw and ug used to quote many passages from the vedhas some of which he respected and admitted the ‘singularity’ of cosmos,and there were 9 Nath tradition who ferociously debunk just as ug did and it is not quoting someone to support ug but to re-emphasise what had been there all along and we were only blind to see it.

  2. Janet Brown says:

    Hi Louis,
    I don’t want to try to figure out the mathematical alterations that occur in the 2 % when you register into account the difference in the size of these heads.




  6. Andres says:

    Hi Louis!

    First of all; thank you for your very good book about your time spent with U.G. A good read!

    What I wonder about U.G.s sayings and also the other sages of recent time (Maharsi, Nisargadatta) is this thing about “seeing”, “observing” or “watching”. It seems to me that all of them share the conclusion that you cannot come to it (your self, realization, natural state etc.) by effort. Because anything you do, in any direction is the workings of the ego, or the thought. Still, even U.G. says (in Biology of Enlightenment) that what is of importance is “to see how this mechanism is operating inside of you”. Something like that.

    That takes me to a place where I canยดt leave the whole business alone. To drop it, so to speak. Because to “be aware” or to “see” I constantly have to remind myself to watch or to not go astray in my thoughts, and this, I feel, keeps me paradoxically stuck in the realm of thoughts. Is it not just thought watching thought? Or is there an awareness that are just quietly watching? And if so, how could I get in touch with that before the thoughtmechanism has ended? And also; why would I want to watch that movement/mechanism inside of me? Then there must be a motive. And where does that motive come from? Like this I find myself go round and round…

    I understand this is a mess to answer…

    But anyhow; What is your view on this dilemma?

    Best regards!

    • louisbrawley says:

      Hi Andres, thanks for writing this, (and thanks for reading Goner by the way). As you would have seen by the end of that book of mine, I was no wiser after all that time with UG than when I started. I still harbor hope of progress for myself so since that is not burned out, these questions will haunt me probably as much as they do you. The beauty of that guy UG was that he didn’t encourage anyone because as he said, “How can I tell you to do something when I don’t know how this thing happened to me?” There is a thing called “Asta” a sanscrit word with some meaning like a faith in the workings of nature. This is the material we cannot comment, analyze or work consciously toward. It’s the other 98% if you will, which cannot be manipulated by these practices of ‘observation’ et all. The interesting thing about UG was that if you look at his story, he stuck around JK until this thing was totally finished. Only when he had that certainty he spoke of, did he walk away. Then only was it clear to him that it was not about JK, or what he himself, UG had practiced. Rather there was apparently a slowing down which occurred when he really deeply saw the futility of his efforts. This is why, (I am convinced), he was constantly pushing those of us around him into very painful corners where we had no way out of the situation. If there is any good reason to write UG’s biography it may be simply to illustrate how hard he really worked and what he gave up in his search. It was no mean feat what he went through even years before the calamity. He was really ruthless. Nirvana by the way is defined as a “Blowing out” in certain sacred scriptures. Thanks,

  7. Branko says:

    U.G. confronts the automatic tendency of our brain/nervous system that looks for ‘similarities’
    This helps to fortify and strengthen our knowledge (to loosely use his words.) It is part of the survival/seeking mechanism of the “I”
    I do this all the time. Most of my conversations are just a trail of all my associations (looking for similarities) “Oh, that reminds me of a time when” etc Instead of listening/ hearing i am searching for more ‘similarities’ and associations
    THis mechanism stops us from hearing u.g. and facing our own nothing/extinction.

    • louisbrawley says:

      Thanks Branko, That thing is hard wired. Even JK spoke of the ‘momentum’ of the thought process. The good news is it helps us deal with day to day reality, the bad news is it doesn’t stop there. Even UG said when he was talking that mechanism was in action. The lucky thing for him was that when he didn’t need it, it didn’t pester him. What a stroke of luck that was to get rid of!! I don’t even believe JK had that much luck. UG also had the common decency and elementary manners to say he was no different from the rest of us, that thoughtless states promised by the spiritual jokers are a sham. “When there is no thinker there you will be a dead corpse!” ( I can still hear him saying that line with all the emphasis at his command.) As with all his comments too, there is a double and maybe triple meaning, depending on the audience of course. He was talking about actual physical death being the “ending of the known” for anyone who sees for the first time. Thanks for posting.

  8. Branko says:

    Thanks Louis.. and Andres too. It seems that biological changes must occur for that mechanism to lose its grip.
    Observation/mindfulness is Bullshit because it is part of the same mechanism. I think U.G. said you would go crazy if you stay on this level (observing every step, etc) There is a basic fundamental state behind it. This is were Maharaj is trying to push people into – the I AM. It is a very blank, no special feeling state. It is independent of any state an “I” is in. This is the only place were you can leave the mind alone and not dick around with what your feeling. It has an equilibrium that is there all the time… Damn, I don’t want to start sounding like eckhart tolle or something (then we are really up shit creek). ๐Ÿ™‚ He lives in a disassociated state and is ripe for a mental ward.
    For a seeker it is the most boring state (the I AM) and easily bypassed because there are no goodies there.
    So why the hell would you want to abide in that state ? There is no pleasure there. It is the only place you can see this “mechanism” and truly hang loose. Equilibrium is a good word to use for it.
    For me its the only place i can be when i am feeling emotional pain, etc. Because “thought” is not taking over, then the body handles the emotion and cooks it.
    U.G. must be sometimes pushing people into that place, he just hasn’t named it and made some kind of “path” technique etc.
    Obviously U.G. is operating from beyond that.
    Watching U.G. on his death bed on those videos was mind blowing. I am going to use the most horrendous word which is L_VE ๐Ÿ™‚ I felt a tremendous empowering wave of it watching him blast the foundation of thought. I have never felt so empowered. Sorry for sinning and using that word:)
    Thanks for letting me ramble a bit Louis.

    • Janet Brown says:

      Hi Branko,

      Interesting to read you comments and I don’t have much background in the areas you talk about.
      ~ taking extra steps
      ~ to apologize for a word ?
      ~ so much more thinking ?
      ~ or something like that


    • louisbrawley says:

      The scene of UG’s death, when I think of it now brings exactly the same response you describe. To talk is one thing, but what I saw in operation there was something else. I’m not even sure I saw it. I don’t know. Lucky bastard I am. How anyone could say he was finished ‘teaching’ or what ever he was doing, is beyond me. I don’t know much about science but he was like what I’ve seen and read about those white dwarf phenomenon in the cosmos, a star condensed and exploding all at the same time. Or what ever they do…

  9. Andres says:

    Thank you Louis and Branko!

    Interesting thoughts. Yes, I guess itยดs a hard nut to crack!

    But, Branko. What you mention is my problem. You talk of an “I am” kind of state, independent of any state the I can be in. Still you say that that (I am state) is the only place you can be in when feeling emotional pain etc. So how can YOU be there if it is a place independent of any I? How can you experience it?


  10. Branko says:

    Hey guys, I dont wanna rubbish Louis’s blog up and make it sound all advaita and mystical.
    What i am referring to is not a hard nut ๐Ÿ™‚ … It is not a mystical state or realisation. More than anything it is deeply functional. U.G. and Nisargadatta can and do negate this ‘IAM’ state as an illusion. We cant help but turn that into an intellectual position – that just keeps us in the intellect and stuck. For myself what hides behind this negating position is a feeling of (very deflated) “whats the point” This was part of a deeper feeling of helplessness. Remember even u.g. mentions not moving away from the helplessness (not reacting or thinking about/overcoming)
    I am assuming that when U.G. is blasting someone he is not just being a grumpy old man on a power trip. I can only assume he is exposing/pushing on the pain “you” organise around or he is blasting you into a non-verbal place/state. I am sure that little guy was capable of making your brain explode… unintentionally of course.
    U.g. is always emphasising the body/animal and whacking us out of the intellect, unless it is required for functioning.
    Louis, sorry if i have gotten diverted from the aim of your blog.

    • louisbrawley says:

      Thanks for your consideration Branko. I’m just throwing things out there. No real aim for me except to talk about UG. Trying to control it would be ridiculous. I do wonder why I do it at all of course. Janet recommended doing this on facebook. Not that I’m against it, but it wasn’t my idea to open a discussion group. It seemed like an opportunity to discuss what I witnessed around UG, an ad hoc extension of the book. I don’t think I’m doing a very good job at that at all. Maybe I should just be sticking to that and let it fly as it will.

      • Janet Brown says:

        Well, the book did talk well about UG … well enough that UG is more of a feeling then a network of teaching for me.

        How to do that in any forum setting that is open to comments seems like it might be a exhausting exercise of moderating O_o
        You know your audience …
        and you would like to show them a picture …
        not answer questions when you keep saying you don’t know wtf anyway. No?

        I think the facebook is better functionally. This system is too hippity-hoppity ~ you don’t know whether to type up there or down here. It’s also hard to find somehow; have to remember where the link was posted last. And forget going in through I still haven’t figured out how to get from there to here.

        I also like facebook because right in that arena are all the potential readers who could make your bank account come true. Thanks for considering the facebook idea, Louis. Since I already read ‘all your crap’, now I can say thanks for reading mine.

        Maybe there are some ways to format a group with slightly more control features to fashion a forum conducive to story-telling.

        or not


      • Janet Brown says:

        Oh! Mr. Mukundo Rao began a story on
        In which UG was on your shoulders while you were dancing ….
        I don’t remember reading that one in the book.

      • louisbrawley says:

        That was a strange night. He was holding my head down at the coffee table while playing at beating me up. I thought to myself that I could lift him up and carry him around on my shoulders like a child. The next thing I knew he was crawling up and demanded that I give him a ride. No one had a camera of course but I’ll never forget the sight of him in the reflection of the glass cabinets of the room, smiling ear to ear while everyone laughed.

      • ansjanet says:

        Maybe someone did have a camera …

      • ansjanet says:

        It must have been strange, at first, having your mind read like that.
        He read you like a book.

      • ansjanet says:

        Here he comes
        This one looks like when he got the idea

      • ansjanet says:

        I broke the link to the head on coffee table picture trying to make it bigger.
        This link will work.

  11. Branko says:

    For Janet,
    Hi and thanks for what you wrote, i do get a sense of what your pointing at but i am not 100% clear with exactly what you mean.
    What i am referring to is close to what you write about when you mention
    – No Conclusions
    You could slide further back down the brain stem and you would be/feel more ‘blank’
    – a further back deeper experience of no conclusions and associations.
    It is very blank and non mystical. When i look at small children i assume that is were they are often sitting – not conceptualising or caught up in the thinking machine.
    The nervous system is very clean here when it comes to emotions. Young kids dont stay in moods for weeks on end.
    I apologise for the word love as a joke. It is hard for me to write about this stuff and impossible not to use ‘loaded’ words. All of these words feel ‘pukey’ but for the sake of conversation i use em.
    I really hate writing, but i do love reading about what louis and you folks have to say. It is really entertaining and exhilarating. No Joke !

    • Janet Brown says:

      Branko (keep wanting to make you Barko)
      Thanks for the mention. Last night’s comment was a prime example of this leading to that which started with a poem I wrote about Chicken Soup that got 27 comments.
      The soup poem was better
      You touched on two red hot words … the one you dare not spell … the other, “apology”
      Doesn’t matter … I will go from this to that endlessly … It’s just the way I do it

      Since the soup reminded me I LOVE UG’s references to being chicken. My iconic grandfather only had to let out a small “cluck” and we all knew exactly what he meant. It’s always the smallest reminders that helps me do the bravest of things.

  12. Branko says:

    Barko is better… I think i finally found my spiritual name ๐Ÿ˜‰

  13. louisbrawley says:

    Thanks Janet. I don’t think I ever saw this picture. The strange thing about his so called reading of the minds around him is that with him it wasn’t strange at all. Made sense because of how empty he was so it seemed normal or natural. In any case we are reading each other all the time. He was just clear about it and didn’t censor or manipulate like we are all the time doing with “all those ideas put in there”. He wasn’t imposing anything so it didn’t even really feel like ‘reading’ just looking at what was obviously there. I can only conclude this from the way it seemed different and heavier when communicating with other people. With him the baggage was all mine.

    • Janet Brown says:

      Ha! If you missed those albums, you may be in for some surprises.
      Your clowning around comes across here and there
      But seeing the photos …
      heh heh, well so much material for my newly aquired hack art
      and for when my own self-censorship reaches a new low

      I edited my former comment to include “at first” before I posted
      (regarding the strangeness)
      then it just becomes something that is

  14. Branko says:

    Hi Louis. I have noticed that U.G. can be really tender and gentle (sometimes), even when telling someone that they are the embodiment of greed. Obviously his statements can trigger anger and pain in us. I see the spontaneous nature of his actions/statements and how that arises according to the situation. This may be too generalised – what was he like with folks who were not into any philosophy ?
    I just wondered if he would “hold back” and not be as confronting with everyday folks who aren’t
    caught up in spiritual mumbo jumbo. There is an old saying about speaking to people according to their level of understanding. I guess he was not tied to this kind of idea at all.
    Any stories or incidents come to mind ?

    • Janet Brown says:

      Hey Barko, I am glad you asked Louis that question!
      I wondered too, if UG ever got to pay much attention to any of those folks.
      If any did get to know UG, they must have come to him attached to one of you’s.
      But I can identify (*curses) with those people you imagine.
      Of course I can’t say I came with a blank slate in the spirit-olosphy department
      …but, pretty close.
      I do have to cop to the “mindset” if that’s what you call it.

      So here I am hanging around.
      Refusing to study (I think that made someone mad)
      after all, the Warning Is On The Label
      So mostly what I experience is what bounces of you guys.
      and just some ‘feelings’
      which may or may not indicate that how UG would approach someone like me…
      is to….
      how to say it ???
      use me to instigate.

      that’s all… just how it seems.

    • louisbrawley says:

      As I was reading this the image came into my mind of a woman who used to come to the farm house outside Bangalore. She was the cleaning lady for Major, a completely uneducated village woman with skin blackened by the sun and hardened by a life of labor. She didn’t speak English but she would come when ever she heard UG was around and sit by the door staring at him with a look of total focus. Apparently she was convinced UG was … well, you know, like that. He spoke to her once or twice about her family, and would acknowledge her when she was there. She would smile and cover her face, embarrassed and thrilled at the same time. It was a very sweet and totally non-verbal connection. She would have been freaked out if he’d spoken to her any more than that but she always came and her entire life changed after meeting him according to Major. There was something about that connection, how he was so respectful of her, that spoke volumes.

  15. Branko says:

    Wow… Silenced…. Thanks man.
    Hey Janet, Barko here… Don’t worry about all that spiritual-osophy we get tangled up in.
    It is all mainly clusterfluff and just extra layers of stuff to discard.
    You had personal contact (lucky like Louis) and also minimal conceptualising.

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