Question: Hello Sir, I want to ask you how I could get enlightened?
Bearji: Yes, this is the question isn’t it?
Enlightenment begins only from direct personal experience of what many call Self-Realization. After this awakening, it is hard to resist, as much as one might try, as there indeed appears to be no other choice but to give your life to that awakening.
Let me also start by saying that Enlightenment is everywhere at this moment. In fact, you are already enlightened, you just haven’t realized it yet… Or I can say it this way; there is no such thing as enlightenment as there is nothing, no one, to be unenlightened.
Considering there is only One Wholeness, some call emptiness, and everything that exists, all forms, including all universes, dimensions, and realms, as those too are subtle forms, are of this One so-called Emptiness. So it is everywhere.
Now considering there are over 7 billion people on this planet, there are over 7 billion paths to enlightenment, and honestly not two will be identical.
“It doesn’t matter which direction you throw your prayer rug. It’s all God, and it’s all Grace.” ~Rumi (paraphrased)
Now the questions are many!
‘How do I know I’m on the path?’ ‘Where do I go? What do I do, or not do? Are there books on enlightenment? (Oh, brother, let me tell you!) Can I listen to people speak? (Holy Mother, they are out there!) Is there anyone I can pay for enlightenment? (Oh, sister, now let me tell you they just don’t stop coming out of the woodwork! Ha!) Do I need to dress, eat and speak differently? Ah, crap. Now, do I have to stop using deodorant?’
So now I’ll tell you, you are in the right place, as I can save you ALL… over twenty-five years to lifetimes of seeking and suffering.
STOP ALL THAT!
My path? Extremely challenging life from the very first day. These challenges continue nearly sixty-five years later. Also from the beginning as far back as I can remember, profound mystical experiences have also filled my life and have fueled my spiritual seeking. Age four, again at age seven, fifteen was a big one that blew my heart wide open to where it left me with absolutely no doubt what direction my life would take. Twenty-five years later, at age forty, I had my direct realization on day five of a two-week silent retreat, Satsang with Gangaji 1994, Breintenbush Oregon. Mystical experiences are part of living in the Now; there is no other choice but to live in the present moment. There is no such thing as mystical anymore really, there is no separation.
I make jokes about my ‘guru handbook.’ But indeed for a true teacher, a final teacher, some things can and can’t be done if one is TRULY true to Truth. One of those rules Gangaji told me when she pushed me out to teach, I can only speak from direct experience. So you can trust what I am saying as I know how to be true to Truth. It’s in the blood that keeps pumping to my heart. I’ll say, at this point in my life, stillness hasn’t let me down once. Whatever the question.
So with that said. Here are the instructions.
STOP ALL THAT!
Relax, it is you already. At some level, this is the most natural thing as since you are that one Self, you have unlimited power and opportunity to realize this. Yogananda once called it a Sacred Remembrance, and when I read that, I had to laugh as indeed, that was my experience, ‘Oh, right! It was me all along!’
Relax means to stop seeking, stop the search! It is not separate from you now in this instant. So STOP. Put down the books, put down the calendar to listen to someone speak, stop paying someone for what and who you already are. What you seek is seeking you and you are That!. It is not outside of who you are. Seeking in this way creates learning obstacles along the path to help point you back to center.
Satsang is always free for everyone.
The self-inquiry question, ‘Who am I?’ cannot be answered. So give up the search, now you can be Still.
BE STILL. NOT KNOW. These words are the final instructions.
Self is beyond mind, meaning it cannot be discovered, uncovered, or otherwise revealed with the use of the mind. Also saying it is and has to be, beyond all of your present moment beliefs about yourself, including and especially all identifications. You are not the body, also meaning you are not your gender, mom or dad, brother or sister, and you are not your name, or your career or job choice. You are not any of your preferences, habits, beliefs, fears, hurts, angers, desires or circumstances.
The ego mind has built, rebuilt, put up support structures throughout, has defended its position and sought out other like-minded souls to have a ‘universal’ belief system. It is the ego’s beliefs that are in the way.
‘Getting away from my beliefs? It’s the world I know! How can anyone do this?’ This too I often hear; ‘it is so much harder then it sounds…’
Yes, if that’s what you want. Being Still is a choice.
It doesn’t have to be hard. It actually takes less than a millisecond. It requires letting go of your mind for just a slip of a second.
Mind training you ask? YES, PLEASE! Five words; Meditation, Meditation, Meditation. No excuses.
Finally, once and for all, BE STILL. Surrender to ‘Not Knowing’ and find out for yourself. Right now is good, no need to finish reading…
It happened to me on an exhale.
Okay, I know what you are all thinking. “But… “Why… “When… “I’m not getting it… “Maybe I’m not ready…
“A gold mine is calling us into its temple. Instead, we bend and keep picking up rocks!” ~ Rumi
Stop using the mind for investigating the outer dimensions. All worlds, all universes, all realms, all gods reside in you. What is it before creation? Imagine an emptiness, something which you can’t define as there are no reference points and thus no attachments for the ego to identify within this void of emptiness. It has to and will always remain an endless mystery. So get over it. Yet, that is who you are and you can experience yourself as Mysterious Self.
It’s the story of the fish who keep saying they are thirsty while they are surrounded by this golden nectar called Grace and Glory all along.
Do you want to know Mystery? It’s the love you seek. It is the love you have tasted. The longing for LOVE will guide you. Love is Trustworthy. Trust Love. It is all and only LOVE. Whichever way Grace looks at you, it’s still Grace.
After awakening? Give me your report, as there remain some traps to fall into, all I’ll say right now are the next three words you’ll need to know after awakening — Mindfulness, Mindfulness, Mindfulness.
All Love and Smiles,
Padmā Bhājan Bearji