By Jafree Ozwald
In February of 1995, I took a trip to Lucknow, India to find the answers to life's deepest questions. After several weeks of introspection and sitting with a guru named Papaji, something happened to me that changed my life forever. I tapped into extremely expansive, perpetually blissful feeling of peace which awakened an intimate personal connection with the conscious Universe. In one moment I tapped into an outrageous abundance of spiritual energy, Universal wisdom and unlimited manifesting power which created a new way of perceiving my life, this world and everyone around me. I could see the infinite light within every one of us and at the core of everything in this world. On this day I could say I experienced a state of spiritual enlightenment.
"In a single moment, in one stroke, you can become enlightened. It is not a gradual process, because enlightenment is not something that you have to invent. It is something that you have to discover. It is already there. It is not something that you have to manufacture. If you have to manufacture it, of course, it will take time; but it is already there. Close your eyes and see it there. Be silent and have a taste of it. Your very nature is what I call enlightenment. Enlightenment is not something alien, outside you. It is not somewhere else in time and space. It is you, your very core." ~ Osho
When I received a glimpse of spiritual enlightenment, I realized that nothing that happens is by accident. Yes, nothing. Even your decision to read this is not an accident. The Universe is constantly guiding you into a more enlightened experience of life. All you need to do is let go of your resistance to it. Welcome each and every experience that comes your way. All your problems and struggles in life are like tiny particles of sand in between your toes. Depending how you move through your day they can either grind you up or massage your feet. Your problems are your greatest teachers, and when you explore each of them with a childlike curiosity you receive the greater lesson they are here to download into you. Welcome each problem with an open heart and mind, and you'll understand that the entire World is designed to awaken, enlighten, heal and empower you.
"As for serious problems, consider these problems as opportunities for growth. Change is not easy. The ego rejects change, yet change is the law, change is the real. Obstacles to the higher path are many. That is why few arrive. If obstacles are nonexistent then the ego will create them. Understand?" ~ Babaji
It's good to know that you are already a spiritual being, naturally and eternally connected to an unlimited Source of love, abundance, intelligence and power. You can't do anything to change this. Your mind can make-believe it's not true, and make up an entire world fabricated with all sorts of negative thoughts, perceptions, beliefs that hold many solid points saying it is completely false. Yet that doesn't matter to the soul, the spiritual awake essence inside you. The infinite quality of its nature creates a much deeper foundation than thoughts can. The thoughts you have about life always remain on the surface and never mix in with the spiritual essence. Your true spiritual foundation can never be tainted. It's like adding oil to a glass of water, no matter how much you stir the water remains separate beneath, while the oil floats on the surface.
"And this is a miracle: the moment that you realize that there is no way to make a home, then this whole existence is home. Then wherever you are, you are at home." ~ Osho
To begin your journey into spiritual enlightenment now, stop whatever you are doing, stop whatever you are thinking. Right now, see if you can open yourself to your natural knowingness that you are an Infinite Being that will never die. Continuously return to this feeling and understanding again and again and again. Do this for 2-3 minutes a day. Let it be the first thing you are aware of when you wake up. As you consciously open this door, you'll be able to rest deeper inside your body and find the most quiet peaceful still center in the heart of your being. This is where you will find spiritual enlightenment and fully awaken to the Divine being you truly are. The longer you can abide in this center, free from doubt and fear, the faster you'll find yourself manifesting a rich life, full of depth, meaning, clarity, love and abundant with bliss. Make this dynamic shift and choice in your consciousness right now.
"An Enlightened Being does not hate you and does not love you also. In fact such a One has no feelings for you at all. The Enlightened One is only there to guide you back home when you are ready for it." ~ Unknown Hassidic Master
The experience of spiritual enlightenment comes from a deeper knowing that who you are is beyond this body and behind this mind. This heightened feeling of pure joy, expanded consciousness, and absolute bliss is a by-product and reward for those who've chosen to awaken from the constantly dreaming mind. It is only for those who want to discover who and what they truly are. It naturally manifests for those beings who want to see through the veil of beliefs the mind lays over reality. Pure awareness is the only thing that can pierce through this veil and transcend suffering forever.
"Consciousness is a being, the nature of which is to be conscious of the nothingness of its being." ~ Jean-Paul Sartre
Spiritual enlightenment is kind of like experiencing a death and a rebirth. When you realize you are eternal, then your real life begins and this is where "you" and your struggles end. Each moment is not so much about what you can attain, give back to the world, or transcend. It's more about surrendering to what simply is. This is where the ego/identity vanishes and the true effulgent Self is found. There is no real ending or beginning to one's identity, because it never existed. It was your imagination creating an imprint on reality. Spiritual Enlightenment starts with realizing this truth, not in a harsh way, but a healing way. When one door closes another instantly opens. When you let go of identifying with your thoughts, mind and ego, the enlightened spiritual existence must present itself naturally and instantly.
"Your ego is creating obstacles. Maya creating maya." ~Babaji
Death is not really death when you realize you're an eternal being, so really there is only the illusion of death and re-birth. There is nothing inside you that ever dies or is reborn. The body/mind may come and go, yet your consciousness always remains. Consciousness exists forever. You are for eternity a spiritual being with infinite power, love and a wealth of divine information. You can only experience this through your physical body. We need the temporary as a foundation to tap into the eternal. You are abiding in this physical form which enables you to be intimately connected to every atom in the entire Universe through it.
"Although each of us obviously inhabits a separate physical body, the laboratory data from a hundred years of parapsychology research strongly indicate that there is no separation in consciousness." ~ Russell Targ
Allow your body to become very relaxed, empty, soft, and open to almost every possibility that comes its way. You'll soon experience that everything is connected to a cosmic intelligent web of energy, love and information in between every atom in this Universe. An exponentially increasing flow of amazing enlightening insights will happen to you the moment you let go and dive deeper into exploring this Infinite Source of energy and Universal intelligence inside you. You are the Divine Intelligence. When you accept this, you'll notice everything changes and you discover you are in the heart and center of an infinite field of space/time we call The Universe.
"When you love you should not say, "God is in my heart" but rather, "I am in the heart of God." And think not that you can direct the course of love, for love, if it finds you worthy, directs your course. ~Kahil Gibran
The first thing to do to reach spiritual enlightenment is to celebrate this moment of your life. The soul is always celebrating existence. Every moment, every hour, no matter what events, problems or situations you're encountering. It lives in the infinite spiritual realm beyond the mind. When you know this, you begin living, breathing, and feeling this conscious intelligent energy coursing through each moment of your life. You realize that there is a divine intelligent conscious energy that truly loves you unconditionally everywhere you go. The main job is to enjoy it, trust it and surrender completely to it.
"The spirit down here in man and the spirit up there in the sun, in reality are only one spirit, and there is no other one." ~ The Upanishads
Discovering the experience of spiritual enlightenment can sometimes be a very long arduous process before it happens instantly. Buddha took 7 years of tenacious inner searching to peel back the many layers of the ego. Enlightenment is a gift you give yourself by shedding all your layers. Only through trusting this process of letting go yourself, your ideas about yourself, your beliefs about you, can you begin truly opening to receiving this divine gift. When you let one layer go, you can instantly reach into your true radiant Infinite Self! As you reach into your innermost being where the God Source abides, you'll find true peace with life and everything in the entire Universe.
"Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes." ~ Carl Gustav Jung
Yes, the experience of spiritual enlightenment is already seeded within you. It is discovered on your journey inwards, where it is planted at the very center of your being. By continuously diving within yourself, looking within, noticing who is watching, aware and awake, in everyday situations you will discover your infinite awareness and vast spiritual nature. You can be looking within yourself all the time, no matter where you are or what you're doing. You'll see that this sacred sweet awareness is always there.
"Attach to the real. Changes are many. Lessons are many. The flow of life plays out. The fog slowly lifts and the path becomes visible. But always be aware that the path is like the Ganges, always changing, never still. That is why we would bathe in it early each morning. To remind us, to understand, that change is the Law of Nature." ~ Babaji
By perpetually diving back into this awareness-ness, eventually you get hit with the realization that you are an eternal being who will never die. In that moment you realize you are that which is beyond life and death. You cannot die and will never die. This enlightening freeing path will open more doors than you knew were possible in this world. You will be able to transcend any experience of suffering that presents itself, simply because you are not afraid anymore. There is nothing to fear when you realize you are eternal. This simple yet profound understanding comes on its own accord and cannot be forced. Yet, what you can do is till the soil, plant the seeds, and water it daily so that one day you reap a future enlightening harvest for all to enjoy.
"Recognize God and goodness in every face. There is no saint without a past and no sinner without a future. Praise everyone. If you cannot praise someone, let them out of your life." ~Babaji
Look Inside at who you are and what you are. Notice there exists a divine energy inside you that is connected to the Infinite Source of this Universe. This Source is ALWAYS available to you. The real question is when are you are open and available to it? The moment you have a tiny glance of your infinite nature, you see that you are The Divine. You are the Source of Love itself. There is nothing greater than knowing this. The Universe is a conscious field of energy that is constantly supporting you in awakening to knowing the Truth. Simply ask yourself, "What am I... really?" This instantly leads one into your center where spiritual enlightenment is found. There is no easier path if you have the patience to explore the simple truth of what/who you are.
"Cease from practice based on intellectual understanding, pursuing words, and following after speech, and learn the backward step that turns your light inward to illuminate your self. Body and mind of themselves will drop away, and your original face will be manifest." ~ Dogen
If you try to answer this question, "Who am I" with another thought or belief about yourself, you just arrive at another limiting thought about what you are and are not truly seeing, feeling, experiencing your real Infinite Nature. The infinite is beyond words, ideas and beliefs. You simply are BEING with what is, whatever arises, being with it and at peace inside. This pure beingness frees the mind from all its bondage, its words, its wordage. You break free from self-imposed rules and belief systems and open yourself up to your simple soft sweet presence. Do this daily, on every hour and one day this experience of spiritual enlightenment will suddenly pour into you. This pure state of being is outrageously simple and utterly amazing. It is the foundation of enlightenment and what all the billions of people are seeking.
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside thoroughly used up, totally worn out and loudly proclaiming 'Wow! What a Ride!" ~ Hunter S. Thompson
No matter what happens on your journey know that each moment is unfolding perfectly. Nothing is by chance, accident or coincidence. Everything is divine and pre-ordained in some wild co-creative way. Sure you are manifesting all of it through your thoughts right now, and it the path has already been paved for you. Free will and pre-destination co-exist simultaneously. The Universe is too big, too vast and infinite for it to be anything less. Think of them as not opposites yet as complimentary thoughts that need each other to exist. All in all in the bigger picture, everything is perfect and always unfolding exactly as it should. Trusting the experience of trusting life is the path of awakening. Trust yourself and everything that happens is divine, each and everyday. Do this and you will create a great wealth inside. This spiritual wealth is what you get to bring with you whenever you move on and transcend this body.
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say "thank you?" ~ William A. Ward
The Universe is always guiding you, protecting you, giving you directions to go within. When you are listening to your heart you can hear this guidance and follow it easily. Practice feeling the stillness inside you. Only then can you know you're on track and can fully relax, have fun and enjoy this wild adventurous journey. As you practice being patient with yourself you'll become wiser, and you'll naturally create more time to explore your inner world. By practicing quieting your mind with meditation everyday you'll begin to go deeper into your being...truly exploring your heart, mind and soul.
"Knowledge is structured in consciousness. The process of education takes place in the field of consciousness; the prerequisite to complete education is therefore the full development of consciousness -- enlightenment. Knowledge is not the basis of enlightenment, enlightenment is the basis of knowledge." ~ Maharishi Mahesh Yogi
Your inner world is an infinite exploration. If you've gotten hooked on the idea that you are a very advanced spiritual being and feel that you've "done it all" you are simply creating another prison in your own mind. The mind lives in a realm of dreams, beliefs and illusion, yet the source of the mind is beyond all that. Follow the mind back inwards to its source. There you will find freedom. As you are efforting, striving, reaching towards the center of "you" and you stumble upon a cyclone of strong negative beliefs and identities from your past, don't stop! Keep diving within for beyond these thoughts there is a deeper stillness where your infinite spiritual nature resides. Spiritual enlightenment happens to you the moment you can truly remain completely silent and still.
"Remember, obstacles are part of change and change is the law of nature. If you react, then the obstacle becomes larger. If you observe, pure observation, then the obstacle passes, as quickly as it was created. Go now. Observe. Pure observation. No judgment. Chant silently. Invoke Babaji within your heart. Now see the movement of Truth, the movement of Simplicity, and the movement of Love permeate the fabric of space and time and move upon the heart." ~Babaji
Problems keep re-occurring because of unlearned life lessons. When you inner world is ignored past issues that arose to awaken you to realizing the infinite being you really are go into a state of hibernation. As you go on living and experiencing your life these issues bubble up again to be fully self-realized. Learn to simply be with what is happening on the inside, on the outside and as the witness of it all. When troubled by the mind, notice the depth and/or shallowness of your breath and simply observe the mind.
"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.
Spiritual enlightenment happens when you stop judging anything, especially yourself! Whenever the experience of suffering rises, remember that it's an opportunity to realize who and what you really are. Inner peace is always a choice. You can instantly shift in your consciousness at anytime. Right now, try this. Take 10 deep breaths and keep your focus only at your 3rd eye. Bring your attention to a spiritual awareness within. Notice how you feel after the last breath is released.
"Before you speak, ask yourself, is it
kind, is it necessary, is it true, does it improve upon the
It is only in this divine silence that your answers can be heard. The silence is always pointing you inwards, towards the Source. Follow each thought back to its source from where it arose. There you'll find who you are. Your heart will fill with joy, love, the light of consciousness and this amazing sensation of freedom. All you need is a little curiosity. To reach this point you must master your mind. This is not achieved through hard labor, in fact its quite the opposite. When you are completely relaxed, you can step back behind the mind, beneath the thoughts where you can truly rest and meditate on the Universe. Sure, it's good to train the mind to focus on what is working and good, instead of what isn't, yet meditating on your infinity is better. Going beyond the mind's world of duality, right and wrong, you stop trying to attain enlightenment, start resting in your infinity, and the miracle simply happens to you.
"You feel the presence of God when silence reigns.... when all is filled with silence." ~Sai Baba
Perhaps all of this information about spiritual enlightenment sounds good to you, yet you are still burdened by a specific problem in your mind which keeps coming back and will not go away. Talk to your problem as if it is an entity and listen to what it really wants. Listen to the intensity of mental chatter occurring in your head. Then sit with it and face it directly. Write it down with pen and paper to get it out of your body, release it from your head and then write down the opposite thoughts and beliefs to it as well. See that this problem has a solution. If you cannot see the answer, practice being very silent and void of any thought. When you step into the void, you can think outside of the container of which any problem was created, and the solution instantly presents itself.
"The ordinary man lives in the brain unaware of himself in the Heart. The enlightened one lives in the Heart. When he moves about and deals with people and things, he knows that what he sees is not separate from the one Supreme Reality which he realized in the Heart as his own Self." ~Ramana
Problems become problems because there is a perception that something is wrong, a judgment about it and a holding onto a certain belief in the mind that it must change. Remember, the Universe has no problems with anything, it's all perfect, everyone's enlightenment is all on schedule in the Universal cosmic mind. Simply drop the thought, let it dissolve into the void as quickly as it came, and you'll find the Supreme Reality, the God-Source that you are, as fast as it seemingly left you.
"Step back. Observe, without judgment, unconditional. Watch now as obstacles melt, become no-thing. Do this each time a block appears. Step back and observe without judgment. Chant the Mahamantra silently. Invoke the name of Babaji within your heart. The obstacle passes, quickly." ~Babaji
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