Your way to spiritual enlightenment
This is a small, audacious article on a vastly important topic, your enlightenment.
Let us dig straight in: To get anywhere worthwhile in life, you will sooner or later find out that you need to get anywhere near enlightened.
Firstly your ego does not become enlightened, it becomes under control, not of you, your ego, but of YOU, your higher Self.
This means that you have to be cautious about me-statements, are you, your ego, your individuality enlightened? I think not! Maybe YOU, your higher Self has finally been allowed to express itself through you, but your ego stays humbly out of the way. To get there there is a few simple "traffic rules":
What you must
You must be truthful to yourself, including acknowledging when you don’t know if you are or are not truthful.
You must be ready to take the consequences expected as well as unexpected, pleasant as well as unpleasant for what you do or don’t do.
What you must not
You must not believe what someone say, without reality testing it with your own integrity, your heart and your brain!
You can take advice from someone (a book, a teacher etc.) if your heart bids you, and your head see the point, and then only carefully!
Remember, you become a follower for example of someones understanding of Christ by entering a church. You become a follower of Christ by finding your understanding of Christ in scriptures read with your heart and intellect. You become a Christ, by discovering Christ within, discovering your own inner divinity, your own "Buddha nature".
Below is a set of suggestions on steps in the direction of enlightenment. But first: We do not need to take any steps, who we really are, are enlightened - your higher Self is and has always been enlightened, its voice is just drowned by the ego, the "me", the separate. This is true, but then again, you don’t see many around that live this truth? This is simple to explain - we are cowards! - To be enlightened, meaning being who you truly are, your eternal Self (!), you need to have the clarity and courage to ask no-one for certificates, backup, support of your opinions, no-one but your heart, that is! Can you listen to your hear?t - do you hear it?
It takes many years of ernest practice to do that, with competent teachers advice, even if the teachers know what they talk about.
Can you bear if family, peers, employer, church etc., disagrees with your stand?
Most people are more afraid of being alone, ostracised from their "home group", than they are afraid of play-acting a role that is not their truth. So for you to be enlightened, this is a starting point: Can you hear your heart?
Now it becomes complicated - You can hear your heart, so - what to do next?
Because you have already exercised doing the right things, so it is more likely your heart bids you to be, not to do! As an example, maybe you have to drive somewhere to get to a beautiful view - that is the doing - but if you don’t stop the doing, you will never get to the being, to "drink", take in, enjoy, the beautiful view.
Magic moments - moments where life is is a good next step.
Well - "next step…" You would probably not read this if you were not already well established in terms of your spiritual development. You probably feel affinity with one or more of the main religions, maybe you have visited a spiritual master of our time, maybe you are already using meditation and prayer.
And this is good - actually fabulous - without that many subtle obstacles would remain in the way! You just need to follow the teachings with both your head and heart in full gear - does it make sense intellectually? does it make sense with your heart? - do you diligently do what makes sense to do, or can it wait? … and if not, do you have the courage to take the consequences if you wait anyway?
If this type of truth seeking is not encouraged by your spiritual mentor or teacher, be careful with that teacher.
When you are truthful, you will meet how much you like yourself.
This probably could do with some improvement.
To improve that, you need to act as a good friend to you!
Not in terms of doing what other people tell you to do, but to do and act in line with what your heart and your intellect bids you to do.
A very good way of training this, and also a very stable platform to meet lifes challenges is the traffic-rules, dharma. If you are game, they are all in your heart, the ethics, the knowing what is right, and what is not right, is there, the knowing of this is not dependent on teachers or scriptures, even if many teachers and scriptures teach the same thing.
Actually, what our hearts know is universal wisdom, so if you read carefully (think, feel!) you will see that all religions have a set of suggestions on how to behave, and even if the language and style is different, the message is not. and maybe one or more of these set of suggestions are worthwhile checklists, dusters, reminders, helping you to use your head to visit your heart:
The Christian teaching have this beautifully described for example in Matthew chapter 25.
Buddhism have the beautifully clear 4 noble truth, and as part of that, the eightfold path.
The Hindu Sage Patanjali sutras describes it with almost mathematical precision in the Yamas and Niyamas.
The Koran has embedded the 99 names of God, that give a beautiful role-model for human core values.
Remember, we grow spiritually by emulating the divine ideals set forth in our scriptures, or as Christ says,
"Be ye therefore perfect as your Father in Heaven is Perfect".
It is no trouble to understand this, the trouble is to do it, and even worse, to be it.
In our struggle towards living our truth, it pays to know a few laws from the area of depth psychology.
The law of projection and the law of resonance.
The law of projection, (as formulated by Carl Gustav Jung): Anything in the unconscious is projected! If somebody exhibits a personality trait we ourself harbour unconsciously - and which we like - We like this person. If somebody exhibits a personality trait we ourselves harbour unconsciously - and which we dislike - We dislike that person.
Handy - No it is not because the other person is … that I’m angry, it is because something, an emotion, a memory, a sore spot, within me is triggered (without that indicating that my assessment of the other person to be … is wrong!)
The other law it is worthwhile understanding is the law of resonance:
If an object vibrates at a certain rate of vibration, everything in its vicinity that has the same vibration as a latent possibility will start vibrating at that frequency This is why your mood may swing from you being on one side of a door to being on the other side, nothing happened, nobody did or said anything, and yet, your mood changed, simply because you resonate with for example one person, creating one mood on one side of the door, another person, creating another mood, on the other side of the door.
This is commonly utilised in spiritual practises. If you contemplate an object with higher vibrations (an Icon, Thanga, the Path of Dharma symbols, a beautiful flower, a candle), the higher vibrations make it easier for you to align with your own inner higher vibrations, wherever the meditation object harbours frequencies resonating with your more or less latent qualities.
The idea is to come back to moments, glimpses, fractions of seconds, of your real Self more and more often, until you grow tired of hiding in your conditioned self, and see you for who you are - essentially your enlightened Self.