So many people have had awakening experiences and haven’t written a book.
So many have the experience of, “I had it. And then I lost it.”
In sessions and groups, I hear this over and over.
Enlightenment is quite the tease it seems.
It shows up for a while, bringing the requisite peace, the non-reactive contentment, the bliss.
Oh yeah! We shall say yes to this sweetness. Enlightenment has arrived!
And so have you, now-enlightened one.
Until just as suddenly, on its own timetable and without fan-fair, after hanging out a few moments, hours, days, months, it slips off again.
Hey where’d you go? Adios, enlightenment.
And then you’re back to the same ol’ judging, dissatisfied, thought-believing life.
Only now, you have had a tantalizing taste of sugar.
What person in his right mind wouldn't want to set about trying to get that back?
Although…. you can see the potential carrot-chasing in this, right?
There’s a better yum out there; better than everyday fare. You had it for a while. You're hungry for more.
And what happens to the present, to what is here, when the desire to get back the enlightenment experience runs the show?
“I know! Let’s trash what is here and pine for /hope for the return of what isn’t.”
Dissatisfaction with what we have. Desire for nicer feelings, nicer thoughts, less ego, a moratorium on judgments.
Just business as usual with a fancier label slapped on it.
Besides, is enlightenment even supposed to last forever? I mean, I realize that's what all the spiritual mythology says, but could it be that all that spiritual blah blah is (gasp) wrong? Could it be the forever-enlightened life is actually just carrot-nonsense?
Everything on this planet comes and goes; nothing is permanent. Why should enlightenment be any different?
Whether you consider awakening a point of view, an experience, an understanding, or a feeling state, why shouldn’t it come and go like everything else?
And then, isn't there’s that sense that you- with all your study and retreats and satsangs and meditating and extra-special giftedness or whatever- you made awakening show up to begin with?
Of course then, that also means you failed. Blew it. You made it leave. “I made this happen and I made it un-happen."
Powerful, self-important, all-revolves-around-you You.
Pretty darned Self centered, no? Lots of “you-ing” involved.
Is it logical that the experience of transcending self would somehow simultaneously make self more important, more special?
Or might such reasoning instead confirm ego, just with a new label?
Maybe you can see that this makes no sense, and that you simply can't get what you're looking for that way.
So yeah, had an enlightenment experience and lost it?
Liked or not, this right here…this is What Is.
Experience comes and go as it pleases.
And without the idea that scoring “enlightenment” is better...
It could be that acceptance of the present, with whatever situations, feelings, judgments, behaviors and thoughts show up, is where the experience you’re wishing would come back actually lives.
Besides, once something is seen it can’t be unseen.
Which is yet another way of saying, what you seek is already here.
This experience you’ve got right now is the enlightenment you crave.
Which means there’s nothing to improve, nothing to change, nothing to get back, nothing to seek.
That would not be business as usual, would it.
Who knows, it might even be downright EnLightening.
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