Enlightenment is, by dictionary definition, a state of being that is perfect in knowledge and wisdom.
It’s a state where you are aware of and have compassion for every single being in existence. There is a belief that when you achieve enlightenment, you stop being reborn; because you learned all you need to know.
This easily takes a lifetime. And even then, might still be nearly impossible to achieve. But it is something worth pursuing; not to learn all there is to be known, but all you NEED to know.
This is why enlightenment is a path you walk alone.
But where does one start?
Do you read The Power of Now?
Do you join a yoga studio?
Do you sign up with an online course, or start meditating a few minutes everyday on your own?
Do you start with eliminating noise or chasing silence?
I was recently asked by a friend if I really thought of myself as a good writer! It took me a few moments to answer by saying I don’t think of myself as a bad writer. But whether I am good or not, that is up to you, my dear reader to decide.
However, I know that I am not a professional writer. Because a professional writes for others, while an amatuer writes for himself.
And that’s what I do. I read for myself and write for myself. That’s the path I walk. And by desperately trying to document parts of it, you can start to relate to my world.
This is how my journey towards spiritual enlightenment has begun; not by self-denial, but with self-indulgence. Not by escaping earthly pleasures, but by pursuing them.
And in the midst of pursuing money, sex and fame I started to learn what I need to know.
That money can never make you happy.
That sex is a bottomless hole; no matter how much you have it, you’d end up wanting more.
That the journey of earning something, unlike what most would tell you, takes a lot from the joy of getting it.
And this is exactly why no one can tell you where your path of spiritual enlightenment begins or ends, because only you know all that you need to learn.
And usually, it is where you least expect it.
Mine started with materialism. To achieve success in money and professional career. That was my path. I needed to get everything I wanted to get (well, almost everything) to actually realize that this isn’t the end of my journey, but merely a step in the process. Another layer I had to peel off to reach deeper into my core existence and learn all I need to know about the universe and myself.
When you say these things out loud, you get very predictable reactions from most people. Some still in the process would tell you how wrong you are. Others, who have never been in the process would agree with you and claim to have known it all along.
Eventually, both groups can take their arguments and shove it up in their asses.
There are certain things in life that can only be understood with emotions, not intellect. Like finding God, or not. Like the death of someone you love. Like achieving astronomical success, only to find yourself, alone, empty and miserable.
That is also a layer you have to peel off, until you reach the skin. And you peel that off too, and you let it bleed. Then you dig deeper, until you really find spiritual enlightenment. Until you stop being reborn; because you learned all you need to know.
We don’t always get to choose our paths in this life, but we must walk it. No matter the price. No matter the pain. You walk it all the way, till the end of you. So when death comes to collect your soul, the earth will tremble beneath its feet.
“If you’re losing your soul and you know it, then you’ve still got a soul left to lose” – Charles Bukowski.