The Transformative Strength of I AM — Navigating Mystic Powers on the Enlightenment Path

Navigating the Inner Self — The Direct Path to Divine Empowerment


Image by Author

Man can rise above gods and fall below animals.” -Osho

As someone walking their spiritual path, if you have been curious about what Yogis call the Siddhis (extraordinary abilities that are products of spiritual advancement), then this article is for you.

In my previous articles, I have discussed the direct path of ‘I AM.’ This path, which various spiritual traditions and teachers have taught under different names, was advocated by Sri Nisaragatta Maharaj. He became fully realized in just three years of practicing ‘I AM.’

“When I met my Guru, he told me: ‘You are not what you take yourself to be. Find out what you are. Watch the sense ‘I AM, find your real self.’ I obeyed him because I trusted him; I did as he told me. I would spend all my spare time looking at myself in silence. And what a difference it made, and how soon. It took me only three years to realize my true nature.” — Sri Nisaragadatta Maharaj

The beauty of abidance in I AM, or Self-Remembering, is its relatively simple and direct approach. It doesn’t require complicated postures, long hours of sitting in meditation, or esoteric breathing techniques. It is simply realizing the Divinity within that Nisargadatta refers to as I AM.

Nisargadatta taught I AM to be a powerful practice on its own. However, you can also incorporate it into your meditation practices to enhance them further. For instance, Self-Remembering can take your practice to the next level if you Self-Remember while practicing mindfulness or yoga.

If you would like to know more about the practice of I AM, here is an article you might enjoy:

The Siddhis — The Spiritual Powers

In spiritual and yogic traditions, siddhis are extraordinary powers, abilities, or attainments that are the products of spiritual advancement. The term iddhi, “supernatural powers” is often used interchangeably in Buddhism.

Yogic traditions identify eighteen different siddhis. These include abilities like clairvoyance, clairaudience, telepathy, and control over elements, signifying heightened awareness and control over subtler aspects of existence.

As you progress on the path of self-realization, spiritual powers known as Siddhis manifest as natural byproducts. However, these powers are not the ultimate goal but rather markers of spiritual progress.

Siddhis are not limited to Eastern spiritual traditions. Western traditions also have their version of ‘siddhis.’ For example, the Toltecs of Mesoamerica, which I am personally familiar with, talk about powers that develop as you advance on the path.

Upon incorporating the Toltec Masteries of Awareness and Transformation into my path, I developed the ability to “see,” one of the Toltec “siddhis.” My wife would come home and tell me about a work colleague she had just met, and I would suddenly ‘see’ things about the person, such as their personal challenges in life, even though I had never met them.

Nisaragadatta rarely mentioned siddhis in his teachings on abiding in I AM. However, his Guru, Sri Siddharameshwar, spoke about them at great length.

Who Was Sri Siddharameshwar?

Sri Siddharameshwar Maharaj (1888–1936) was a revered spiritual teacher and Guru. He was known for his profound teachings on the non-dualistic nature of reality, emphasizing the realization of the Self as the ultimate truth.

After the passing of his Guru, Siddharameshwar continued his spiritual journey independently. In 1920, despite initial resistance from his fellow disciples, he developed the “Bird’s Path,” a direct and accelerated path to spiritual realization. This decision marked a turning point in his spiritual evolution, leading him to profound insights and a heightened state of consciousness.

The book “Master of Self-Realization” by Nisargadatta Maharaj is a compilation of 130 talks given by his Guru, Sri Siddharameshwar Maharaj, over several years. The “Master of Self-Realization” offers a profound pathway to enlightenment, centered around recognizing Ishwara (I AM), the God within, and understanding the emergence of siddhis, spiritual powers, as one progresses.

The Self as the Source of Siddhis and The Siddhis Dual Nature

Siddharameshwar emphasizes that the Self (I AM) is the source of all powers and strengths. These powers are inherent in the nature of the Self and manifest as one attains unity with the divine consciousness.

The Self, or I AM, has the power of creation inherent within it. However, the motivation for walking the path of I AM must be for Self-Realization, not the powers of the siddhis. To realize I AM, you must stop identifying with the small ‘I’ or ego. The siddhis can be very seductive for the ego and empower it. Empowering the ego instead of dis-identifying in it will throw you off your path. Siddharameshwar often warned that a true spiritual journey is about transcendence, not gaining power over others.

While siddhis are a natural byproduct of spiritual advancement, they pose a potential distraction. Using siddhis in alignment with I AM can benefit the Self and others. But it is vital to remain focused on the ultimate goal — unity with Ishwara, the Divinity within. The one who transcends the allure of Siddhis becomes a true Siddha, a realized being.

Recognizing Ishwara: The Divine Within

At the core of Siddharameshwar’s teachings is recognizing Ishwara within oneself. Ishwara is not an external deity but the Divine presence residing in every individual. This recognition is pivotal for self-realization, bringing a shift in perspective and leading to inner peace and enlightenment.

Nisargadatta Brought His Guru’s Teachings Into a Simple, Direct Approach

After Siddharameshwar’s passing, Nisaragadatta distilled his Guru’s teachings to ‘abiding in I AM.’ Nisargadatta Maharaj delivered two discourses every day for 30 years at his home in the busy back streets of Mumbai, India. The discourses were open to the public and attracted people from all around the globe. Nisargadatta spoke directly and simply, drawing from his own enlightenment. Although he left his physical body over 20 years ago, his teachings still significantly impact the Advaita Vedanta tradition and inspire numerous spiritual seekers worldwide.

Recognizing the Divine Ishwara within, as laid out by Nisargadatta and his Guru Siddharameshwar, is one of the most direct paths to Self-Realization. The Siddhis, while remarkable, are reminders of the profound capabilities of the I AM and should be viewed as aids in the spiritual journey, not as ends in themselves.

Would you like to receive some downloadable processes along with more spiritual techniques and practices?
Subscribe to the Flowing Zone Newsletter and be one of the first to receive the soon-to-be-released Handbook for Planet Earth — Where I explore actionable hacks to integrate personal growth, mindfulness, and spirituality into daily life.



Carl Gerber (aka Kristopher Raphael)
New Earth Consciousness

Welcome to a Handbook for Planet Earth — You will find actionable hacks to integrate personal growth & spirituality into daily