Awakening and Freedom
February 15, 2013, 11:13 am
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NirmalaAwakeness is an innate quality of who you are. What we call “awakening” is recognizing not only that there is awakeness present but that that is who you are. At some point, you recognize the immense limitless perfection and innate awakeness of your true self. This happens on its own with no effort on your part. Spiritual awakening is similar to the recognition that you are awake in the morning after sleeping. All of a sudden you realize that you are awake, the sun is up, and it is time to get up. In the morning you do not do anything to awaken. When the time is right, it just happens. Spiritual awakening also just happens when the time is right.

One of the dilemmas that many find themselves in is that they want to awaken more than life itself and yet they can do absolutely nothing to make that happen. The desire to awaken and the fact that you can do nothing about it are two immovable truths, which crush “you” between them. When you just rest in the place where you admit both of these truths, something indescribable can happen. When you just stay there and don’t turn away just because the situation is impossible, then these two truths can wear away all of your mistaken ideas and illusions. What remains is an empty spaciousness that allows the truth of your being to become obvious. You still haven’t done anything, but everything else has fallen away, leaving a clear space for the truth.

There is a difference between awakening, which is recognizing the truth of who you are, and Freedom, which is the end of suffering. Awakening is a gift of grace. That’s the part that you can do nothing about. You can’t do anything to make awakening happen. It just arrives, and it’s not up to you when. However, Freedom comes as soon as you stop resisting what is happening or grasping after what is not happening. When you do that, the end of suffering is instantaneous. Freedom does not depend on awakening. What it depends on is wanting Freedom more than anything else—more than you want to maintain the illusion of a separate self.

After awakening, there is a natural reduction in the tendency to grasp or resist and therefore a reduction in suffering. However, even after awakening, the tendency to grasp can still arise, usually in more subtle ways, such as trying to hold on to the experience of awakening or longing for that experience to return. When that happens, suffering reappears. The good news is that Freedom is available in every moment—before, during, and after awakening—whenever you surrender your grasping and resistance. By surrendering your futile efforts to change what is, you can be free. This choice to surrender is, in fact, the only true choice you have, since you can’t choose to awaken. Then, as always, awakening will take care of itself.

Nothing Personal: Seeing Beyond the Illusion of a Separate Self


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Reblogged this on Awakestate.

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