April 13, 2017 10:01 AM
I like to think of Mystical Oneness as a shortcut to enlightenment. By defining “enlightenment”—by having a clear, straightforward definition—it makes it that much easier to zero-in and target practices specifically for it. Sort of the 80/20 rule for spiritual awakening.
Here’s an excerpt from a lead-in to the Living In Mystical Oneness series I’m working on. In it I’m attempting to explain how the traditional experience of enlightenment isn’t that different from my somewhat controversial definition of it.
Some traditions say Witness consciousness is enlightenment. Others say Unity consciousness is.
But—and this is a huge but—neither of them play very well with the manifest world.
When one awakens to either form of the traditional view of enlightenment, one is faced with three choices:
- Remain in the unified state until you die of starvation or are eaten by vermin or wild animals.
- Find (or be found by) a caregiver to take care of your physical needs and interact with the manifest world.
- Shift out of the unified state to take care of your physical needs and interact with the manifest world, then return back to the unified state when you wish. In other words, switch in and out of it on demand.
Ramana Maharshi famously started out with #1 when he allowed insects and vermin to feed on his body while in the pure, unified state. Luckily for the rest of us, he was found by some monks who recognized his state of consciousness and took care of him for the rest of his life (#2).
Most everyone else has chosen #3.
Maharshi demonstrated that the unified state—in its purest form—leads directly to the physical death of the individual. From the unified state, one’s physical body is no different than the animals who may be feeding upon it. Both are part of the One Thing and it makes no sense to interfere with “what is” and prioritize one over another. Yet even Maharshi came out of the unified state to teach.
To survive, we must voluntarily (ie: on demand) step out of this unified state of consciousness so that we can interact (interaction takes two) with the manifest world.
In other words, option #3 means:
Enlightenment is the ability to unite the personal and the impersonal on demand.
Which is, as I stated above, my definition of enlightenment.
But that’s not how I came up with it.
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Mystical Oneness and the Nine Aspects of Being is a step-by-step guide to enlightenment and beyond.
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