If you read across traditions what the highest attainment is within those traditions, most would-be disciples go back to the mundane world. You have to have a pretty strong calling to want to subject yourself to the asceticism required to achieve advanced awareness. From hours to days to decades of fervent prayer, chanting, meditations, and isolation from the world, there isn’t a whole lot in the brochures to encourage membership in the liberation club. One should ask themselves, however, if these adherents haven’t traded attachment of the world for attachment of soul numbing disciplines and ‘holy’ appearances.
Being awake is not isolation from, nor perpetual battle with temptation and distraction. Often times the disciplines utilised are more physically distracting to actually awakening, than the background appetites and attractions of the body. If you incorporate DNA, the body has had much more experience being an addict of consumption and fear than you have being a master of your domain. You will never be a master of the body. Your only hope is to cease identifying with it. The appetities are not your’s after all. They are part of the dream you were having.
Being awake is not an empty thoughtless mind. The Self cannot experience without a body. The body cannot exist without a Self. It is your body’s attention and your unconscious creative energies that interact within the world of phenomena until you awaken. Capable seekers are discouraged by lofty descriptions of what enlightenment and/or awake is. I once was told I was not awake because I could not tell a man precisely how many jellybeans were in a jar on his livingroom table. “An enlightened person would know the correct answer” , he cackled.
Being awake has nothing to do with the appetites of the body. Being awake has nothing to do with knowing the answers to any questions that are asked of you. Being awake has nothing to do with the health of the body, or the chemical distribution within it. Being awake does not give you the emergent abilities of levitation, mind control, telekinesis, being in two place at the same time, knowing winning lottery numbers, controling aging processes of the body, walking through walls, super human feats of strength, a clear communication channel with alien species, or the undying love and respect of family, friends, and countrymen.
Being awake does give you a quiet peaceful seat in the theater. Being awake does give you choice. Being awake does not mean you never react again. You just react knowing the mechanics of the interaction consciously. Being awake does not mean you never judge another again. You just judge from an awareness of knowing the other’s script. Being awake does not mean never feeling sadness, fear, or anger ever again. Each experience has an appropriate conscious reaction, which is a liberation from the unconscious dream reactions.
Being awake is a state of presence. Simple mechanics – you are either identifying with the brain’s version of reality, or the Self’s more presently informed version. This means that not only enlightenment, but also waking up are just a slight shift in perception – from body to Self. This should not take lifetimes, or decades, or even years. That prefrontal lobe has evolved our awareness to where it can take a moment to experience it…that is the potential of this moment. The concept comes before the awareness.
Before enlightenment, you chop wood and lug water. After enlightenment you chop wood and lug water. After awakening, you pay someone else to chop the wood and lug the water while you listen to the music in our chat room.
~ DC Vision