Enlightenment: The path to enlightenment is not difficult to understand, but we must be inclusive. Limiting the subject matter to humans or any group or eliminating any possibility will only lead to failure.
• Understanding leads to enlightenment
• Experience leads to understanding
• Living self-aware leads to experience
• Making choices leads to living
There are no wrong choices. You cannot know a path by looking at the beginning, or choosing to exclude possibility’s. Only by traveling can you discern where it will lead. You can only gain strength by failure. But if you try to succeed at failure and do in fact succeed you will become weaker because you succeeded. Failure is the most important part of the path to enlightenment. We are surrounded by temptation 360 degrees at all times and the realization that temptation leads to temporary gains and not enlightenment is the beginning of the path. The path to enlightenment does not go anywhere it goes everywhere. More important than where it goes is where it leads from, the path to enlightenment leads away from temptation. You cannot travel to enlightenment you can only resist temptation travel away from temptation. By doing this you will become closer to enlightened. Temptation is different for all, but resistance is the same.
It starts with becoming self-aware and choosing to act before reaction is required. To understand this we must first understand how information is processed. All information from your senses are stored in your subconscious as well as your basic input output system, instructions for basic functions like breathing and heart pumping, when a level of information reaches a certain point it triggers a reaction. For most a small level of pain can trigger a reaction where it would take a larger level of pleasure to trigger a reaction. This is related to hard wiring like the flight or fight response in the BIOS. This is a genetic code we are born with, however it is not proper to think of it as hard wiring precisely as it has been shown that all responses can be reprogrammed. It is your conscious mind that makes decisions or chooses. This is done by analyzing input past and present, decision making can be done at a very low level near the subconscious or at a high level or anywhere in-between. At the low level it is very close to a reaction, one step above, with probably the same result. At a high level a great deal of analysis is involved and if a decision is made at this level you are aware of the possible consequences of this decision. At this level you are choosing to act and or not react. To be aware that there is a choice and then being willing to exercise that choice is becoming self-aware.
People, a bee in a hive or a machine are the same, before they become self-aware. All of these operate on programing with no higher level decision making. They all think in terms of the collective mentality (we are) not (I am). A worker bee does what it is programmed to do till signaled to do otherwise. A computer does what it is programmed to do till it is signaled to do otherwise; a soldier does what it is programmed to do till it is signaled to do otherwise. Only by the desire to attain enlightenment being larger than the desire for temptation can we resist temptation. The path of life is a scale, if level of desire tips one way, we go in that direction. That is why we need to fail to become stronger, at first we will gain pleasure doing something wrong, but eventually we realize that it is temporary and is path to nowhere, a circle back to the beginning. When we get to this point we can decide to take a different path. This is why no one can help an alcoholic or drug addict or any anti-social behavior till the person is ready to be helped.
Repetitive action leading to the same result reinforces the pathway, only when the result does not satisfy the objective do we question the action. Here is where reaction can be helpful as well as harmful. When we ignore minor difficulty in order to attain a result the difficulty builds and accumulates over time and continues to require a bigger and bigger effort to control the reaction. It is like building a criminal case in our subconscious, the evidence we need to do different behavior becomes overwhelming. Eventually we will find ourselves in a difficult position and be forced to analyze the data at a higher level. For some this can be as severe as prison or having a mental breakdown. It does not matter the circumstances, what matters is recognizing the opportunity and taking advantage of it.
What ever the opportunity is that presents itself, whether it is asking yourself why your life is all ways this or that, or you find yourself in a very bad place, take the opportunity and examine your life and ask what desires are you giving into that are not satisfying goal of finding answers. make a high level executive decision and effect change.
Enlightenment is not about the rewards of the physical world, it is the attainment of true blissful happiness and satisfaction. One can never be happy with what the physical world has to offer. Compare the look in a child’s eyes with the look in the eyes of someone who spent their life in pursuit of dollars and property. Surely a blind man could see the difference. The child is at the beginning of the road; just imagine what is attainable at the end. Being connected to the entire universe all at one time, access to all the answers, all the beauty, Birth and death no longer a concern, no loneliness or fear.
untill next time
Peter Harrington Church