If I would have to pick one important thing 2016 has done for me, it would be spiritual growth.

I didn’t seek it though.  I didn’t even want that shit at first. In fact, I used to judge the crap out of those spiritual woo-woo people.

I just happened to be lucky enough to go through a series of events and experiences that had a profound impact on the way I perceive life, the universe and everything.

I've begun to understand that there’s a lot of truth in the things these people talk about.  I also understand how easy it is to misunderstand spiritual ideas when they are presented to you (I’m talking to you, organized religion and new age afficionados).  The problem is that the very essence of this wisdom, is something you can only experience and not grasp in words.  So if someone who doesn’t feel these things yet, reads the words, they’ll think it means something else.

Another problem is that lots of people who are heavy into spirituality are extremely gullible. Once they got their first taste of the fact that there’s more to life than we can see, they tend to believe anything that is sold in a shiny spiritual package.

This chases people away.  Like it chased me away for most of my life.  Somehow, you can’t trust someone’s judgment anymore once they told you “the cosmic configuration of the galactic gates of Uranus are aligned in a unique way that happens only once in 2012 lifetimes” for the 13th time that year.

Which is too bad. Because the essence of a lot of spiritual wisdom is one that could make everyone happier, treat each other better and end all war and conflict.  In other words, exactly the aim of this blog.

So then why haven’t I written about it yet?

 

The Pitfalls of Seeking Enlightenment

One of my best friends once said:

“What if the most enlightened people walking on this planet are not the spiritual leaders, but some of the people you’d never expect it from?  The janitor at your school.  One of the garbage men. The madame running the local whorehouse.“

And you know what, I think he might’ve been on to something.

There is a striking dissonance between spreading the beautiful message of oneness and living in harmony with the universe (a message I totally understand and support) and living in an isolated segment of society that does nothing else but talk of these things and rarely interacts with “normal folks”.  Not to mention the fact that separating the awakened from the “sheep” actually creates more separation and less oneness.

A similar pitfall, is the incongruence between the endless preaching of transcending the ego and taking massive pride in the fact that you’ve transcended your own.

The irony is that you lose all the spiritual advancement you ever made in your life once you start to take pride in it.  You’ll still believe you’ve transcended your ego and raised your vibration.  But you’re only using those stories to delude yourself.  In reality, you’re right back where you started.

You might even tell yourself “I’m enlightened now”.  As if it was a degree, or a new level to reach in life.  Instead of a way of being that you can be depending on the particular moment.

At the same time, that one garbage man and janitor are living humble lives of service.  Dutifully paying their dues to creating a harmonious environment for everyone to live in.  And that enlightened madame is helping the hopeless feel just a little hint of human touch and connection, when they would’ve otherwise completely lost it.  While you are sitting in your cave, meditating and telling yourself (or others) how great it is to be so enlightened.

 

Spiritual Development for Its Own Sake

All the above may sound like I’m a bit biased against spiritually oriented people, but that couldn’t be further from the truth.  Lots of my friends are like that.  And some of the best books I’ve read in my life are of the spiritual kind.  Continuing to explore consciousness and my own spirituality is one of the best things I ever started doing for my own happiness.  But when you choose to pursue that path, there’s a very important question to ask yourself:

Why?

Why do you want to see the light?  What would a “spiritual awakening” give you that you need?

Are you lacking something right now in your life?

Is there another part of reality that you are trying to escape?

Are you seeking happiness in something outside of yourself?

The people I know who seem legit awakened beings, are somehow never the ones who sought it.  It just happened to them, and then they started looking for sources to understand what they were going through and further explore those ideas.

And it’s probably meant to be that way.  Just letting the evolution of your consciousness unfold itself in a natural pace.  Stripping away the layers of reality and your own existence in bite-size pieces that you are able to digest.  Without forcing it.  Without being in a hurry.  Just relaxing, letting it happen naturally.

This idea may seem a bit stupid.  Because you can say “If everyone could just see things for what they are, we’d all be better off”.

Would we though?  What someone who has done terrible things, became conscious of the full impact of his deeds in 1 harsh blow?  Would he be able to deal with that?  Or would it be better if that happened gradually? So that he could process and heal at a natural pace, learning to both forgive himself step by step and creating a new life where his actions are aligned to make the world a better place.

I believe spiritual advancement comes when it’s meant to come for you.

And to be frank, if you believe the universe always gives you exactly what you need.  Why search for anything else?  Why pursue further enlightenment at all?  Don’t you trust your universe that it will cross your path when you need it? 😉

I believe raising your own consciousness is indeed what you’re here to do.  Life gives you an endless series of lessons and challenges that brings you ever closer to the core of its own meaning.  But more important than discovering those things, is what you do with it. 

Otherwise, spiritual development can become an addiction that prevents itself.  If you don’t know why you are trying to reach yet another level of consciousness, you are simply raising it for the sake of raising it.  And it’s a fixed race. You’ll always be chasing that next high of experiencing life with just a little more depth than the day before it.  Not realizing that in reality you’re not even experiencing it any more, so you might just as well die.

Because consciousness is nothing, when there is nothing to be conscious of.

And while there’s indeed vast worlds of nothingness to explore, you’ll have an eternity of time left to do that once you’re dead.

But this physical world, is something that’s only available during your limited life on earth here.  And if you believe your spirit will live on to grow as a conscious being anyway, why not actually let it do what it came here for and participate in the physical world?

Why not take all that extra consciousness and apply to the things you do on this planet?  The physical things?  Instead of wasting it on pursuing more?  The next awakening will come once you’ve actually used this one, for the benefit of the experience in this physical world.  And if you don’t do that, there is no point in seeking more enlightenment.

That’s like saying “I need more bread!!!  I need more bread!!! So I can pile all the loafs on top of one another and create one big throne of bread to sit on every day, doing nothing but pondering the awesomeness of all the bread I already have and asking for more!!!”

When alternatively, you could also just shut up and EAT THE DAMN BREAD.

Cause when you butter it up with some of that consciousness, it tastes amazing  😉

 

Receive Pepijn's new articles by email.

While there's enough articles here to fill a couple of books and sell them, keeping them on this site where you can read them all for free would be much more awesome!   And it's amazing people like you who make that possible.  If you feel like these posts have helped improve your life, please consider making a donation.

 

 

 

 

Categories: BlogHappiness