Preparing for Enlightenment
In years past, if you sought the meaning of life, you would get on a ship, sail to some far off land like India or China, and hope you could find a teacher who would take you in to their ashram. In preparing for Enlightenment, it could take you years (or lifetimes) to master the spiritual practices necessary to be considered ready for Awakening. Nowadays, you just consult the oracle Google for the answers you seek – and here you are.
My point is that if you were lucky, and found a guru, you would have plenty of time and plenty of help in getting ready for Self-realization. It takes time for the physical body to adjust to the higher energies that spiritual adepts have to deal with. That’s part of the reason for the creation of body stretching techniques like yoga. If you’re in good physical shape you may not need practice Yoga. Unfortunately most people aren’t in very good shape so you might want to consider a class or two.
Some people don’t get the chance to prepare for Self-realization. It hits them like a ton of bricks out of the blue. Many of them wish they had a little more warning of what was coming because ‘waking up’ changes everything and can really create problems if you’re not prepared. On the other hand, they may have been involved in lifetimes of spiritual practices that we wouldn’t know about.
Most people wake up very gradually and some may not even notice they are self-realized until after the fact. Others may need a little more help. So how does one prepare for this most powerful spiritual experience? The first thing that comes to mind is meditation. Done properly and done daily, meditation is one of the best ways to prepare you for Self-realization. Meditation helps quiet the mind, and also tends to help create a certain amount of detachment from your thoughts. These traits mimic some of the qualities of the still/quieter) mind that one has after awakening.
We all carry with us from lifetime to lifetime unresolved issues that need to be addressed and released. And on top of that, there are plenty of negative emotions we’ve repressed in this lifetime. These emotions get stuck in our chakras and our subtle bodies and block the spiritual energy from flowing freely through us. Some meditation techniques can help you loosen and release your unresolved negative emotions. The more of these blockages you can free up before Self-realization the better.
It takes lots of your spiritual energy to create the illusion that this game we are playing here on Earth is real. We have to completely fool ourselves into believing that we are separate from the source of ‘All That Is’. Self-realization removes the veil that keeps us from this truth. When that happens, all of sudden all kinds of energy is released and starts to flow through us. The physical body is pretty solid so the flow is somewhat limited or we would burn to a crisp. But we still get plenty of it and if there are any unresolved negative blockages in the chakras or the auras it can cause some real difficulties. So dealing with your ‘stuff’ is a wise thing to do while you are preparing for Enlightenment.
Many people think they need a physical teacher to help them with preparing for Enlightenment. And while there is something to be said for the love and ‘transference’ between guru and disciple it is not necessary for everyone. This was true in the past, but not so much now. The earth’s vibrations are speeding up and that is influencing the group consciousness of the entire planet. And while no man is an island, it’s getting easier and easier to Awaken on your own.
It would be wise for you to consult some of the good quality reading material available now on Self-realization and Enlightenment. Books about the teachings of Ramna Marshi, and Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj are a good place to start. Authors such as: Adyashanti, Dr. Frank Kinslow, Gina Lake, Jeff Foster, Shellee Rae, etc. are excellent resources as well. Adyashanti’s book; “The End of Your World” is a wonderful book that has just about everything you will need to know about Awakening and Enlightenment. Dr. Frank Kinslow’s books will introduce you to a completely different enlightenment model. His way of explaining enlightenment is very simple yet powerful. Check out these two Kinslow books; ‘The Kinslow System’ and then read ‘When Nothing Works, Try Nothing’. The techniques in his books are very easy to do and very helpful in the Self-realization and Integration phases.
Another wonderful resource for information on what it’s like to be Awakened and what other seekers experienced during the process is a Podcast called ‘Buddha at the Gas Pump’. It’s conducted by Rick Archer at: www.batgap.com. Rick is a master interviewer and spends about an hour and a half to two hours with each interviewee. He’s done about 350 as of the writing of this article. He usually asks the person to tell him about their awakening and what it was like for them. This is priceless information for all sincere spiritual students. I highly recommended you go to his website and check out the archive of his past interviews. Then get on his e-mail list to be notified when he’s posted a new one.
Adyashanti points out that each spiritual student needs to take their time with preparing for Enlightenment and ‘let their own dharma work itself out’ with regards to Awakening. This is wise counsel from a wise man. In other posts, I will be introducing you to advanced techniques that may greatly speed up the process of Self-realization and Enlightenment. Some of you will be ready for this and some not ready. My advice to you is to consult your own inner guidance before using any new techniques.