Your Path and the Path to Enlightenment
Enlightenment is a goal of many people who are interested in spirituality. Many will make a real effort to investigate about what enlightenment is and how to achieve it. Depending on their circumstances and the readiness of their inner Being, the search may take them in different directions and philosophies, such as to Gnosticism, Theosophy, Sufism, various branches of Hinduism or Buddhism , or some more contemporary spiritual branches, such as New Age etc. (just to name a few). There are many different ways that people could take and those who search for enlightenment will eventually settle somewhere.
Also, there are many people who think that they are searching for enlightenment, but in reality it is more that they have curiosity about spirituality than a real yearning to change. Enlightenment, on the other hand, is just that – a change. It is a profound inner transformation that is permanent and upon which more and more of enlightenment is built. Often time when people think of enlightenment they think of some kind of realization, a one-time event in their life through which they understand certain things and that changes their lives, but enlightenment is more than just realization – it is also an inner awakening and incarnation of the Being (Higher Self). This is achieved gradually on the path to liberation, rather than instantly as some kind of a “Aha moment”.
I noticed that many people today have formed an opinion about what the ultimate goal of spirituality is, or what enlightenment is. This opinion often time comes from digesting many texts and books of various kind about spirituality, to finally form a view that most resonates with them. The final product of that often time is something like: “I am on my own path to enlightenment.”, or “My path to enlightenment is different” or “We are all on different paths to enlightenment”.
It is true that every effort to reach enlightenment has a value, in the same way as everyone’s life has a value, regardless if they are pursuing spirituality or not. It is also correct to say that if someone is interested in enlightenment, though not yet ready for it, so instead they take an easier form of spiritual living, their life will ultimately have some spiritual value. However, paths in spirituality are many, and not all of them lead to the point of enlightenment, of final liberation, which is the liberation from the Wheel of Samsara and beyond. There are paths that lead in that direction, but eventually they branch off, to eventually remain only one path, which is the Direct Path that leads to the incarnation of the Being and to the Source.
In order to liberate oneself from Samsara, some serious efforts need to be applied, and that is not easy. It is not something that can be done by walking on one’s own path to enlightenment. The reason for this is because the path is already fixed and existing; it cannot be modified by how we would like it to be. It can be tempting early on in our spiritual journey to allow the mind to create its own path and then believing that it will eventually take us to high spiritual achievements. This is a luxury that we simply do not have; we cannot allow ourselves to believe the mind in this case if we want to reach enlightenment, the final Liberation.
As I mentioned above, there is value in various spiritual efforts that we make, provided they are of the type that doesn’t harm us nor others. Even small spiritual efforts count to certain degree, because they can have a preparatory effect. However, if you are looking to free yourself from suffering, both internal and external, then there is no easy route to achieve this. There is a path that provides “the way out”, and that is through inner self-transformation and self-realization. If we want to achieve this, it is necessary to stop sitting on the fence and to make appropriate steps towards that goal, because easy paths to enlightenment do not exist. Even those who think of enlightenment as achievement of high meditational states have to apply a lot of time and effort into practice. And so too a lot of effort needs to be applied to reach the liberation from the wheel of Samsara, by walking on the defined path that eventually brings all the qualities of the inner Being.
HDP, May 2020.