Enlightenment – it’s not just for the bodhisattvas, the monks sworn to silence, or your devout, church-going Grandmother. The secret to attaining enlightenment is that anyone and everyone can do it and what’s even more surprising: it’s simple.
But how, you ask, is it simple to fast for 40 days just to speak to ‘God?’ or completing a 500-hour yoga teacher training, or doing 10,000 downward dogs and upward dogs, or going on a strict vegan diet and swearing off drugs and alcohol (the horror!), or having a non-office job and living off the beaten path in a cabin in the woods? Not necessary, my friend.
You see, what people don’t realize is that enlightenment is simple. It’s free, and guess what: we already have it.
Buddha’s definition of enlightenment was simple: “The end of suffering.”
Ok, cool. But you’re probably thinking, ‘How is that possible when there is death and disease and war and rape and crime going on at every second of every day? How can I not suffer when I have neck pain, or that I am worried something might happen to my children, or how some people seem to have things easy and others struggle?’
That, we cannot calculate. There is no answer, or reason. It’s the flow of life, the yin and the yang. A manifestation of what we believe – but that’s a whole different topic for another time. What we do know about enlightenment is this: you don’t need to be fixed. There’s nothing ‘wrong’ with you. The real ‘you’ is already there, even if it’s underneath 10,000 layers of debris. The whole part about it is clearing out that debris to uncover the real you.
A wise shaman once said, “It’s not about becoming who you are, it’s about unbecoming who you’re not.” So what that means is, we can spend years and miles around the world and failed relationships and crappy jobs to ‘find ourselves’ or we can simply clear the debris of what isn’t ours to let our true selves shine through. To literally ‘clean the windows’ of our bodies and souls to reveal our 100 percent true authentic selves, without any masques, labels or baggage that we brought from the past or what others have placed upon us.
The key here is to clear the debris. So how do you do that? There are endless ways: energy healing, praying, meditation, journaling, reading spiritual books, laughing or simply asking and giving more love, each and every day. Because the essence of everything, and I mean absolutely everything, is love. So when we ask to bring more love into our lives—love for ourselves, for our partners, for our families and friends, and love to everyone else out there we don’t even know—we’ll receive in back tenfold. That’s just the way quantum physics works: like attracts like.
Where do you start? When do you start? How about now. How about you ask yourself how. Sit in meditation and see what comes up. And understand; it’s not a race. The answers may not come to you in a day, within weeks, months or a year, or they may never come to you at all, like you had wished. But you will definitely get something back, and it will be more than you had ever fathomed or thought or asked for because it is so beautiful no human mind could conceive it.
So take out the old dust mop and rag and start clearing the debris—it’s time to find out who you are really are, and who you really aren’t. The world is waiting to meet your lovely, shiny soul.