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Radical Gradualism

A Journal of Awakening

By Phil Servedio

Editor's Note

Impatient readers may want to skip ahead to Chapter 5, where Phil becomes awakened during an extraordinary session with Arjuna Nick Ardagh.

Author’s Disclaimer

Reprinted with permission from

The following story is not designed as an endorsement of any of the individuals described. As the Sufis say, “The right time, the right place, the right teacher.” This is a story of a particular set of opportune circumstances that occurred for me over a period of time between May 1994 and September 1995, and is meant for the communication of various experiences and insights only.


THE STORY YOU ARE ABOUT to read is one of Grace, pure and simple. It may appear that effort was made in the following story, but there was no linear relationship between what was “done” and what resulted, nor could there ever be. The real practice espoused is satsang, the relationship to a number of Awakened individuals with whom I have had the good fortune to come into contact, and the wonderful blessings that have occurred within the context of satsang, and not by some heroic, will based effort. By the way, “Radical Gradualism” is a term coined by one of teachers in this story to denote the sudden or radical (or “root”) event of Realization within a gradual process of spiritual growth.

I have written the following for two main reasons. One, out of a personal need to communicate what has transpired in my case, hoping that it may be inspiring or useful in some ways to others, and two, that I’m simply a blabbermouth who never could keep a secret very long, especially this kind of secret!

Phil Servedio

Phil Servedio

Text copyright © 1995 Phil Servedio. Used by permission.

When we published this journal in 2000, Phil Servedio was 45 years old, worked as a software engineer, and lived in California with his wife Annie.

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This page was published on February 22, 2000 and last revised on September 3, 2019.


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