Robert Adams was born on January 21, 1928 in the Bronx (New York) to a Jewish mother and a Catholic father.
Very few have had the fortune to meet Robert Adams, yet his experiences and teachings are among the highest expressions of spiritual liberation that we know of. The first memories of her life were of a man just over half a meter tall with a white beard who, from the foot of his cradle, spoke to her in an incoherent language. He remained by his side until he was seven years old, the age at which Robert developed a siddhi., or spiritual power. Every time he needed something — whether it was candy, a musical instrument, or the answers to a test — he would repeat God’s name three times, and whatever he wanted came to him. One day, at the age of fourteen, during a math test, he repeated the name of God as he used to do; but, instead of the answers for the exam, what came to him was a complete enlightenment experience, a great satori , which left him astonished and transformed […]
After this experience, Roben lost all interest in worldly life. He left home at sixteen and became a disciple of Paramahansa Yogananda who, despite Robert’s pleas, would not allow him to enter his monastic order. Instead, Yogananda sent him to meet his guru in the then almost unknown village of Tiruvannamalai, at the foot of the sacred mountain of Arunachala, which led a path down the mountain – a frail-looking man and an extraordinarily compassionate face on the sparse white beard – he recognized in him the little man who had accompanied him during his childhood muttering nonsensical words. He realized that he had finally come home. It was about Ramana Maharshi, who would later be considered one of the most illustrious sages of the twentieth century. In recognition of the clarifying influence Maharshi had on him, Roben said: It was the contact with Ramana that opened my eyes to the meaning of my experience .
(Excerpted from the introduction to Silence of the Heart )
After Ramana Maharshi’s death, Roben Adams continued to travel, and over the next seventeen years he met many teachers and instructors (including Krishnamurti and Nisargadata Maharaj with whom he spent six months), verified his enlightenment, and his understanding reached its fullness. Robert Adams was a jnani(Knowledgeable of Truth), who openly shared his wisdom with all those truth seekers who came to him. Although he never wanted to be a guru in the traditional sense, he had students from all the places where he stayed for a short time. He spent his last years in Sedona, Arizona. He never tried to gain notoriety or a large following; in fact, he never even allowed his photograph to be published.
Simple, direct, clear and profound, Adams’s teachings are rooted in the Advaita or non-duality tradition. Like his guru Ramana, Robert Adams emphasized the importance of transcending the individual “I” through the process of self-investigation, in order to finally perceive and understand the reality of the one Self that manifests in all that exists. The essence of his philosophy was: You are neither your body nor the doer. Everything is consciousness. Everything is fine .