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Integration of Awareness and the Individual Life

41PrIv5n6YL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Once we discover that Awareness is our True Nature (not some identity composed of thoughts that we call the ‘ego’), it can be quite an upset to our way of life.  While the discovery that Awareness is who we are may take considerable time and energy, it is not the end of the process that we call Enlightenment.

The discovery of Awareness creates a seismic shift in the sense of identity.  Okay, we’re Infinite, Eternal Awareness (or Emptiness or any of the 100 other names) which has become these body-minds.  Our actual identity is simultaneously the Infinite/Eternal and the here-and-now person (in this particular writer’s case, called “Jonathan Labman”).  Both are true, paradoxically and at the same moment.

The implications of this discovery will take us a long time to embody, or ‘live out’ truthfully in the real world.  All of our ideas of who we ‘are’ or in this case ‘were’ will actually be only partially true.  The ‘ego’ doesn’t really exist?  What does that mean?  That’s what we begin to discover as we continue the journey of Enlightenment after discovering that we are Awareness.

This discovery that we are Awareness and so is everyone else, will also have a profound effect on how we interact with the so-called ‘others’ (all of whom could be seen to be aspects of the same Awareness).  How can we know we are Awareness, and exploit, harm, abuse, ‘use,’ or steal from others?

However, some people stop too soon in their Enlightenment trajectory.  This is why some people appear to be so injurious to others.  (More to follow.)

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Ordinary Life

Ordinary Life

“When you’re hungry, eat.  When you’re tired, sleep.”

“Before enlightenment, I chopped wood and carried water.  After enlightenment, I chopped wood and carried water.”

There is a lot of mythology in the world about what happens when a person ‘wakes up’ or ‘gets enlightened.’  First of all, the ego doesn’t wake up: Awareness wakes up to Itself.  Second, once Awareness wakes up to Itself, It continues a transformation process in the body-mind of the person through whom Awareness has woken up to Itself.  (Many more myths persist but, whole books have been written about them, so no need to list them all here.)

This is akin to the Christian tradition of salvation, being followed by sanctification.  The individual will bows to The Absolute will.  The ego is seen through and given up.  Sometimes, in other traditions, the ‘sanctification’ process is called ‘purification’ or ‘transformation.’  This is not always easy, and is often painful!  The ego doesn’t give up without a fight.

Looking at it from a three-dimensional-life point of view, this process of purification takes time.  Simultaneously, a new way of living comes into being: decisions are no longer made based simply on what is ‘good for me’ because ‘me’ doesn’t exist.

While this transformation is going on, ‘normal life’ continues.  We work, pay our bills, buy and/or grow food, shovel snow off the driveway (for the third time in ten days), and go to seasonal holiday celebrations.  Life looks and is ordinary.  People who ‘wake up’ still look like regular human beings, and aren’t ‘special’ in any way.  When we’re hungry we eat; when we’re tired we sleep.  We still chop wood and carry water (if we need to), or do the modern equivalents of those activities.

All the while Consciousness is busy transforming the life of the body-mind it’s awakened in, punching holes in the ego’s idea that it is real and rules the world, and bringing Silence to an ‘internal world’ formerly dominated by chatter.  This is generally done quietly and ‘behind the scenes.’  It is something to look forward to, because everything changes for the better.

May all who read this awaken in this lifetime: it is possible!