Enlightenment in a Box: Yay or Nay?

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Whatever awakening is, one thing strikes me as true about it: As soon as we start saying it’s this way or that way, a particular specific thing, we’ve crossed over from the direct exploration of the awakening experience into the doctrines and dogmas that sometimes characterize science, education, and many religions.

This is not a condemnation of religion or schools or the sciences. Rather a single, simple question: is this what we want? To put judgments of worth/unworth, rightness/wrongness on what spontaneously and uniquely unfolds within each of us? Certainly, many of us go through times of not quite seeing things clearly, which is natural and usually takes care of itself through time or helpful guidance/feedback. That’s not what this is about.

Some, in the zeal to communicate or formalize the awakening experience speak of this method, that path; of levels and practices as being “the way”, which only means these might be their way, or the path of someone they admire. The labels put onto the various insights and experiences can facilitate communication between us, and of course many of them are effective and valid means to insight. Yet beneath this is something that might call for a little clarification.

My experiencing, my realizations and insights are exactly right and arrive exactly on time. Yours, too. It’s simply not important that they can and do show up in different forms, or are seen in different sequences. In fact, it could be a true obstacle to imagine that things should happen in a certain linear order of occurrence, or be specific and particular experiences or realizations. This is boxing- the putting of awakening into a container, tying on a pretty bow and handing it out like a party favor. I’m not sure this serves; individual, intimate knowing and experiencing is awakening itself, and the acceptance of pre-digested beliefs a poor substitute. This is the downside of enlightenment in a box.

The upside is when the thoughtful, savvy aspirant or awakening one has confidence enough to keep some, toss some, trash the box and keep on going. Some can, some can’t. We each are responsible for this, of course. And spiritual teachers, guides and gurus also carry responsibility; it is to incessantly and unrelentingly remind their students not to blindly believe, not to silently swallow without clear contemplation; instead, to teach them to walk the territory themselves, rather than worshiping the map.

Contemporary awakening is already way, way out of the traditional enlightenment box, and is happening all over the planet. It will eventually go exponentially viral. Until it does, shall we cultize our awakenings, perhaps even ourselves, by concretizing certain steps, methods, and descriptions as “The Way”? Perhaps we might better serve those who come after by simply and lovingly passing on what could be a key that fits most locks:

“Look for yourself. Explore. Ponder. Don’t believe anything, ever. Hear what others have to say about waking up and then lay it down. They are all pointers, meant to be used and then dropped. You can and will find the answers that are exactly right.”

I would only add: “For you are the answer you seek, every single time.”


About Lisa Kahale

Just THIS.

15 responses »

  1. Dead center Lisa! So often we fall into the trap of latching onto some concept or explanation – usually because it resonates so well. In the extreme case these latching on’s become ‘religion’, must be’s, don’t you dare transgress types of dogma! Beware dogma!

  2. The confidence that comes with awakening that you mention in the fourth paragraph was something that I found really wonderful; actually knowing for myself, rather than trying to figure out whether someone else’s words were true.

    • I agree, Paul… and now there is an attraction still for a few of the words of others, and the knowing that if they don’t resonate, that’s fine. It’s all unfolding just right, no matter what. Thanks for your support.

  3. OH hahahaha!! Yes indeed! What was Greek or even gibberish-seeming before is now something I can understand and then accept or not. Forgot about that part… :)))

  4. Truer words were never spoken, Lisa. Praise the infinite variety of awakening experiences now arising spontaneously all over the world – and praise the day awakening truly “goes viral” and humanity’s collective hysteria falls away…

  5. The process is as unique as the individuals experiencing it, and therefore there is no way to quantify it. I have come to understand that it is useful to another’s process, the story of my own experiences. There is value in hearing about how the energy is affecting fellow seekers. Sometimes we find commonalities, and sometimes not. And that is the beauty of our collective Journey. We cannot each know it All, for we have each had very distinct adventures as incarnated souls that brought us to this place, at this particular time, for this Soul purpose.

  6. Fundamental truths. Please keep me informed of every post/event trough email.

    • I have seen the illusion of the self some three months back.but doubts and tribulation still continue.will it go with the passage of time or I should do some excercises.

  7. Doubts and tribulations are part of the deal, ghanzni. I would suggest you simply look at each thought as it comes up and ask is it true or not? No thought is true but this must be confirmed via experience rather than simple intellectual knowledge. Keep at this and rewards are big… On the right sidebar you can start following this blog. I’ll have more to share…


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