Thursday, May 18, 2006

what is enlightenment?

too often in modern society enlightenment is thrown around like a consumer product on the shelf, packaged for sale.
few can even describe it, never mind sell it.
in some ways it can be described by what it`s not.
it`s certainly not authority over others. the guru or teacher who preaches a method to enlightenment is generally an egotist with a messiah complex looking to have you join his cult. enlightenment isn`t a light beaming out of one`s eyes that is recognisable by those on a similar path. that is a romantic hallucination. that leads to cult behaviour too.
many who teach this idea of enlightenment are merely learning strings of buzz-words and offering classes at the local community center to the next crop of wide-eyed subscribers looking for the latest fahion in "spiritual" developement.
enlightenment can be a curse and divisive in a society that doesn`t understand the attiudes of a person enlightened in any meaningful way. the enlightened soul can anger the men of conscience and poke thier egos into conflict without meaning to.
history has it`s stories of just such things.
enlightenment gets confused with conscience, which is a construct of religion designed to set people amongst each other. conscience is an ego play leading men to interfere in politics and religion without any real understanding of how they are being manipulated. enlightenment draws people together in a gentle way whereas conscience binds and obligates.
in a.a. there is a practice whereby people are asked to differenciate between the things they can do in thier lives and the things they can`t. this is a healthy spiritual practice. mind your own business is basically what that is saying.
exactly what men of conscience cannot do.
enlightenment is the opposite of all of thse angry and resentful things.
the practice is letting things go with faith that some enlightenment will be attained.
i know what it looks like from this vantage point, but like playing guitar, i can`t make you play.
you have to practice.

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