In previous blogs, I have spent a great deal of time deconstructing popular myths about what the awakening process is, or means. There are a huge range of myths out there– from what oneness is like, to what someone who is awakening should eat, look like, act like… to what path or religion or guru or meditation technique “must” be followed… to a consistent and constant focus on the “pains” and “shifts” that awakening entail and an odd focus on “killing the ego”, as well as a focus on how awakening means that you will be completely free from judgement, human emotions, human experiences, human thoughts, and will be in a state of indescribably bliss and a field of love like none other.
Most of these myths are engendered by people who have no direct experience of being awake, or the awakening process– they simply hear about states, or hear gurus speak about states, and tack on their own illusions, their own traumas, and their own hopes to what they have heard.
I realize, from feedback, that I have spent a lot of time (albeit necessary time) deconstructing many of those myths, but I would like to bring forward what being awake actually means, and is like. It is important to note that those of you struggling with ego, or with competitive spirituality, may turn this blog into something like “oh she is full of ego she considers herself awake” but that has nothing to do with me in actuality. There are plenty of awake people out there, and plenty of people who have awakened differently or are “further” than I am in the process.
Now that that has been cleared up, let us discuss what being awake (vs. still awakening) is like:
There is a shift from seeker to sought. This is the biggest shift that I see, and have experienced. In all of awakening processes we are desperately seeking how to merge with source. We take classes, read hundreds or thousands of books, listen to gurus… constantly needing to do more, to be more, because whatever we have done is never enough. Most of us can feel that call to merge with source, to understand how we are a part of it, and for many this call leads to many years of searching, of seeking. When that merging, or that understanding has emerged that we are merged with divinity, and we have unraveled and cleared a lot of our surface traumas, beliefs, thoughts, etc so we can become who we are we don’t need to search any more.
This is not to say that there isn’t a desire to learn more, to unfold more… to read books, or to listen to teachers, or to take courses, but that incessant searching, that ache for more, that list creating of always needing to do more or be more ceases. There is often a casting off of more surface materials that happens in this stage– a release of books, teachers, and belief systems that no longer serve. In this stage I went from owning close to a thousand books to about two hundred, for example.
Competitive spirituality ceases. Before awakening, there is still a desire to prove yourself, to prove where you are and how much you know. There is the endless presentation of arguments, of “truths”, of looking down on people for being “asleep” or eating, acting, or being different from you. When awakened you realize that people are where they are, and everyone is acting and being from their current level of consciousness. There is no need to awaken people, or get people to where you are, or get people to understand you. When you become content with where you are, there is no need for any of this behavior. When awake, you realize that people are really struggling, and many people are still really asleep. But people, in general, are doing the best that they can… and that they need their illusions, their beliefs, their traumas, their chaos… because without it they wouldn’t feel in control, they wouldn’t feel safe.
Instead of judgement compassion and discernment develops. Much like the last category, there is a realization that people are where they are. And it is not your job to get them to be anything other than who they are and where they are. There is compassion that emerges that people (including yourself) are really struggling. Most people have difficult lives and are really struggling– and if they do not (they are financially secure, have what society tells them is a good life, for example) they create struggle and difficulties.
Along with compassion, discernment develops. In awakening states it is either easy to go one direction with this and think that everyone needs to act like you and think like you otherwise they are a lower life form… or another direction of thinking that oneness and compassion means that every opinion is valid and every understanding and person is the same and has the same level of consciousness. Neither are true. What happens is the clarity of seeing people where they are, and seeking people and their understandings as being valid, or of being in a spiritual sort of kindergarten (and everything in between). It is possible to look at someone in spiritual kindergarten or realize that someone is just starting their path (even if it is a guru or “popular spiritual teacher”) and realize that they don’t know what they are talking about and still have compassion for them. This discernment, in fact, is necessary to find out what you want to spend your time on in this lifetime. Evaluating something as not worth your time, or as a lower level of consciousness, is done with a level of clarity and understanding… and contrary to popular belief is a necessary and fundamental skill that should be developed by every person who is awakening or awakened.
Realization of true spiritual power, spirit guides, and the flows of divinity develops. It is common for people who have awakened to go through a period where all of their former “spirit guides”, archetypes, deities, and so forth consolidate and disappear. This is necessary to realize true oneness, true divine flows… and then the person can choose to work directly with divine flow… or with the forms and understandings that come from pure divine flow.
True peace develops. Awakened people are generally a peaceful bunch. When we are struggling with beliefs, with traumas, our lives are filled with chaos. We are constantly in a reactive state. Whatever chaos or emotions occur in our lives are magnified. When we are awake we naturally flow with divinity, understand what divinity flows mean for our individual existences, and have worked through enough of our chaos and trauma that we can fully participate in this flow.
A resting state occurs. This typically happens right after becoming awake, but the seeking process is exhausting. It simply takes a lot of energy. We may have struggled for decades, or lifetimes, to merge with divinity. When this merge becomes permanent and realized, we can rest.
We see through the vessels of the Heart. This is something that is ever deepening and widening, but after becoming awake the ability to see not only through the physical eyes, not only through the third eye, but also through the vessels and the spiritual heart develops. This creates a sort of glow around things, but also has the effect of softness, of compassion, and of developing a love-based understanding for people, things, and places (basically everything in existence). This does not mean that you do not see them for who they are, or how much they struggle, but the capacity to see everyone… from the small joyous child to the guy who cut you off in traffic to the worst demon in hell with compassion and even love develops. It is easy to see the small joyous child or a flower with love, but the development of compassion, understanding, and feelings of divine love for the “worst” of ourselves, the darkest of humanity, the darkest in the Universe develops.
The stress of opposites ceases, black and white either/or thinking ceases. We become okay with and understand paradox. This is a big one. When we are not awake, we need this either/or linear thinking. Both sides cannot be right, and opposites cannot exist with one another. This is how and why oneness has been described as this big puddle of undifferentiated bliss, and how the mythology of seeing every person as equal and valid has developed. The idea that you can be one and separate, or can be compassionate and discerning of where people are, is hard to process in an unawakened state. In an awakened state, you can be full of bliss and love and also think someone is a jerk for cutting you off. You can experience bliss and sorrow at the same time. You can know that one side of a story and the other are both valid (or are both filled with illusion). Contrary statements, states, and understandings are not diametric opposites. They can exist, and do, side by side.
A return to the physical body, and understanding of physical emotions and sensate experiences occurs. In “awakening” communities, the focus is often on “ascending”, on leaving, on being anywhere else than the physical body or the individuals individual lives. Any emotion that is not bliss, or love, or anything that is not positive is hidden away, not talked about because it is “bad” or will cause “bad vibrations”.
In an awakened state, the importance of having a strong and balanced mind-body-spirit occurs. There is no longer a seeking to go outside the body, outside of our lives. The divine flows through and informs our lives. There is no longer fear, or castigation of any emotion or experience no matter how “dark” or “shadow”. There is a realization that there is beauty in anger and fear, that sexuality is sacred and blissful, and that we are meant to have physical bodies, the physical form… and that all of our senses are why we are in the physical form and divine flow can allow for us, in our physical bodies, to touch, taste, and smell things on a deeper level.
The “shadow” or “ego” or anything else about ourselves is no longer something that needs to be dealt with, it is not bad, or something that needs to be “cleared”. All parts of ourselves, demon or angel, are welcomed with open arms, as are all emotions.
We let go of control. Surrendering of control is one of the most difficult lessons or initiations. We actually don’t have much control (if any) but the illusions that we create around control are plentiful. We fear not being in control, we have many mythologies and spiritual experiences we have created to prove we are in control. Being awake is a realization of that lack of control, and of how divine flow shapes our existence, and being able to float through and in it… without creating any illusions of control to comfort ourselves.
We realize that we are very important… and also very small and not important. Most of us spend our entire lives trying to prove our self-worth. Most of us are attracted to spirituality because we can make up spirit guides, archangels, and other spirits who have our best interests at heart, and who can make us feel special and powerful after many years of feeling worthless or not important. In the awakening process we discover our true selves, our divine selves… which are very important and have a lot to bring to humanity… and we are each unique with unique attributes of divine flow to bring to the world through our physical bodies. But the realization of oneness, of divine flow, also allows us to understand that we are very small, and that we are not that big of a deal.
The realization of being very small and insignificant to most people in the awakening process is something that they wish to control and will not move past. They have spent so much time building themselves up, realizing themselves as gods and goddesses, that when the realization comes that one person, no matter who they are, is also small and insignificant most people desire to control and fear returning to old patterns of self-worth (which are still present, otherwise they would have no issue being a peasant rather than a deity). It is an important spiritual initiation to recognize and allow the understanding of simultaneously being large and small, important and insignificant, in at the same time.
Thoughts cease. The realization of an awakened state means that there is no longer idle chatter in your brain. The universe is essentially one big brain, and we have one big brain that creates our reality and all of its illusions. When we awaken we move past this, and our brains no longer are generating our realities. We still have thoughts, but the ceaseless chatter and creation of realities and illusions and problems stops.
We have stillness. At the center of the Universe is stillness. It is the Void(s). This stillness is wonderful, and blissful, and is able to be seen by others.
Although there are more things that I can go into, this is a fairly comprehensive list for now. There are likely “higher” states that I have not been to (as there always are), and some things that I am forgetting as I am writing this. If you would like to stop seeking, stop searching… to find what you are looking for I do offer programs and appointments and such. Contact me with interest. But even reading this list will allow for you to understand and move you towards realizing this state for yourself. There is a reason why you are reading this, as there is for many things in this world.