You spend your whole life looking for it.
And then you die.
No doubt having previously convinced yourself that you’ve somehow done enough good in this lifetime, to put you one step closer in the next.
It’s a lovely story….
But like many spiritual ideas out there, that’s all it is.
And that act of self-delusion, is unlikely to help you in the end.
The Story that we are Sold
I remember it well – the story that I was sold.
I’ve even taught it myself at Buddhist Centre’s through the years
Here we are, an imperfect being – with our unhappy states of mind and unethical actions.
And here’s the Buddha, the perfected one.
Not a flaw to be seen.
And in between him and us, there lies the path…..
The path that takes us from who we are now, to this saintly Buddhahood.
Where everything will be fine….
What the Story Neglects to Tell You
What the story neglects to tell you is something rather key.
There is no actual destination called Enlightenment. At least not in the way you take there to be.
All the ideas you hold of how it should or will be – are simply that….
And are no closer to the taste of an orange…. than one who has spent their life reading, but never having savoured that exquisite taste.
Equally the idea of you…
The ‘you’ that is somehow going to go on this journey and attain this immaculate state.
That is a fiction too.
Much as this can be hard to see…..
The Grand Deception
The problem with spiritual teachers and spiritual teachings is that they perpetuate this deception for you.
They do not point to the fallacy of what is being said.
They do not ask you to turn full circle and analyse your very nature.
And point beyond the conceptual nature of the promised land!
They do not ask you repeatedly, ‘Who is it that wants to attain Enlightenment?”
Or ‘What is it that is telling you how Enlightenment will be?’
In fact, many give no such pointers at all, but let you stew (whether by design or through lack of wisdom)……
In the process of seeking…
Until it is well and truly worn out and you have no other option but through desperation, to begin looking elsewhere.
What Enlightenment IS
What Enlightenment is is hard to say. But one thing is for sure….
It is not about something in the future.
It does not exist somewhere else other than here.
It cannot be found.
It cannot be given to you by a teacher.
And it’s definitely not what you think it is.
It’s difficult to make sense of this
It’s difficult to make sense of this from the perspective of a seeker. The words can go in but they don’t really hit home.
I am sure people said this to me in the past, but I just made a fancy concept around. it.
Stuck it in a public talk to increase my perceived wisdom and self esteem.
And yet that doesn’t mean the message is invalid – nor not useful to keep putting it out there.
Because one day, just one day….
It might sink in….!!
p.s. If you like this post, you might also be interested in this one: What is Spiritual Awakening?