Spiritual Awakening in the "Real World"
Author: Nanice Ellis
If you can be the watcher of your thoughts, you will begin to awaken. Just watch the thoughts â€“ without believing or even disbelieving â€“ just watch and see what happens.
Spontaneous Spiritual Awakening is not the norm. I’m not saying that it never happens, but it is infrequent and unpredictable. If you wait for that magic moment, you may wait forever.
But what if you had the power to quicken your own awakening? There are, of course, many paths to spiritual awakening, and the process is unique for each one of us, but there is one thing that you could easily practice that would exponentially hasten your path to awakening.
I personally spent many decades seeking spiritual awakening. I tried every technique and teacher I could find. There were several times that I believed I had awoken but the “experience” wore off and I was back where I started. Years later on my journey, I would realize that I mistook many mystical experiences for that of true awakening. If I had known then what I know now, I probably could have saved myself many, many years of seeking…
What I now understand is that spiritual awakening is accessible to everyone, and you don’t need to travel to a special part of the world, or do any bizarre yogi tricks in order to awaken. You don’t even need to meditate. Right now, you have the innate ability to wake up.
Many years ago, I visited Zions National Park in Southern Utah; in the middle of a pitch black night, I sat alone on the edge of one of Zions’ famous towering cliffs. It was a difficult time in my life and the challenges desperately made me want to wake up – in order to release the pain. As I sat there, I yelled out into the dark canyon, “I want to wake up!” I heard a voice call back, “Jump,” it said. I slowly crawled away from the edge. Happily, I did not listen to the voice, but the message never left me. “Jump,” it said, but what did it mean?
Who you really are is awake so if you were to peel away all the layers, you would suddenly find yourself to be completely present, free and awake. These layers include the roles we play in life and everything in which we attach our identities, but these layers are illusions, and not who we really are.
The world we live in appears so real, but don’t let the real in reality fool you – there is nothing real about reality. Everything, including you and me, is energy – moving, vibrating, living energy. This infinite and conscious energy is malleable and limitless, but anything that is made of energy is still just energy and energy is not tangible. It is all smoke and mirrors because energy can only create illusion.
What gives the illusion power is belief – your belief. When you believe that something is real, for all intents and purposes it appears real, and reacts real.
Every time you give your attention to illusion, it takes on your consciousness and it interacts with you in a very real manner. This is how life operates and it is also what keeps you immersed in the dream – keeping you asleep. Illusion can only control you if you believe that it is real. In order to wake up, you simply must let go of the illusion.
Letting go is the one practice that has the power to exponentially quicken your path to awakening.
On the spiritual journey to awakening, many of us have been taught to let go of attachments, roles and identities, but unless you are a monk or someone who does not live in the “real world” it is virtually impossible to let go in this way. For me, as much as I desired awakening, I wasn’t going to leave my young kids in order to attain it, or move them to a remote area where they couldn’t grow up with the comforts of home.
The thing is, you do not need to change anything in your life in order to awaken. The only thing that you must release is the attachment to your thoughts. You let go of attachment to thoughts, when you no longer believe every thought that you have.
Who says you must believe all your thoughts?
For years, I had a practice of discerning the good thoughts from the negative thoughts and that was very effective in helping me to reclaim power in my life, but in order to awaken, the secret was not to believe any thoughts. At first, I wondered how I could live my life without believing any of my thoughts, but after a little while, an interesting and unexpected thing occurred. My thoughts were no longer running me or controlling my life. Something Else – something deeper or greater than me, and my thoughts, kicked in. It was as if I had found a magic switch that allowed me access to a world beyond thoughts; a world where all action was inspired and effortless and everything just flowed.
If your goal is to live a happy and satisfying life, it is important to let go of the negative thoughts and turn your focus to thoughts that support the life you desire, but if you want to fully wake up, it is essential to release attachment to all thoughts. Full Spiritual Awakening requires that you let go of the good as well as the bad. The awakened state is a state of constant letting go – of everything.
Without believing your thoughts about your relationships and your experiences, you are present in this moment with the purity of connecting to life in the fullness of every experience. In other words, you are awake.
I realize that letting go of thoughts can be challenging because thoughts can be relentless, but no thought is true. It only becomes true when you believe it to be so. Letting go is not a one-time thing. It is a practice that you partake until you reach a state of wakefulness. The more you do it, the easier it becomes.
The typical thought system of mankind is limited in perception because it is tuned into a dense frequency of the current state of humanity. Therefore what you perceive and think about is limited to that frequency. This is why so many of us are living in fear and stress. In other words, every time you believe thoughts of limitation, which are most thoughts, you are tuning yourself further into dense reality – where the pressure of that density causes us to stay asleep.
Because this is not your natural state of being, when you let go of the limited human mind by letting go of thoughts, your frequency rises and you organically tap into universal mind that is omniscient and omnipotent.
Because universal mind has the answers to all problems, what once caused fear and stress can now be resolved. Letting go allows you to rise up, much like letting go of a helium balloon – without effort you peacefully arise. You naturally awaken.
One of the reasons that it is often so challenging to let go, is because we don’t consider what we are letting go “to.” If you do not know what you are letting go “to,” it can be quite scary. This is where your own spiritual beliefs come in. Do you believe in something greater than the human you? That is what you are letting go to – be that Source, Universe, The Divine, Big G…. You are letting go to your all-knowing, all-powerful Higher Self.
Yes, this requires trust, but that is the point. Letting go requires that you trust whatever it is that you truly believe in, but you must find out for yourself. Do not take the word of religion, parents, society or anything else. You must make this discovery and this connection for yourself – on your own terms.
I have come to the conclusion that I, as the human me, have no idea what is best for my life, but my Higher Power does and this is something that I can trust. From this perspective it is quite easy to let go.
When you let go to this all knowing source, you rise up and you become that which you trust; you discover that you are now relating to your life from a higher level of awareness, where you naturally know things rather than just think them.
We are told that meditation is necessary for awakening but it is not necessarily the meditation that awakens us – it is the letting go that transpires during meditation that is the key for awakening. When you meditate, you stop listening to your thoughts, and when your thoughts turn off, you are present and awake. As soon as you start listening to your thoughts again, you fall into sleep. Understanding and utilizing this Stop and Start Switch gives you immense power to awaken.
In the past, a thought pops into your head, and you naturally believe it. This belief invites other similar thoughts to manifest in your mind. Before you know it, you have a full blown story and the emotions that go along with it. The shift is simple. When that first thought pops into your head, don’t believe it. Just let it be without inviting other thoughts to join it, or maybe ask yourself, “How do I know it is true?”
If you can be the watcher of your thoughts, you will begin to awaken. Just watch the thoughts – without believing or even disbelieving – just watch and see what happens.
By releasing thoughts, you are also releasing emotions and attachments which originate from thought. You let go of mental attachments and emotions, simply by letting go of thoughts. Let everything just pass on by. You will still experience attachments, emotions and thoughts but they will begin to lose their power over you.
From a completely awakened state, you will be able to choose thoughts, emotions and attachments in order to consciously create. Each of these elements are tools for creation, but first you must become the master of your mind instead of the slave.
I now understand that the voice that spoke to me on the cliff was my own voice telling me to let go, but it wasn’t the tangible that I needed to release. It was simply my attachment to all my thoughts.
It may be challenging to let go at first, but you have the power to believe any thought or let it go. The more thoughts you let go, the freer you will become. Here is the best part, releasing thoughts allows you to be present here and now, and then something remarkable happens. It is as if “Life Pops” – everything is clearer, colors are brighter, sounds are heightened and your sense of being alive is intoxicating. This is the Awakened Experience, and it is available to you right now, simply by letting go
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