Chapter 4: A New Beginning

Awakening Ushers In A Long Period Of A Transition

After awakening, you turn a corner and head off in a new direction.. But where you are going? What will you to do? You are in a place you have never been in before.

You feel tentative and disoriented. You do not fully understand what has happened or the changes you are going through. There are periods when you feel dizzy and disoriented. Fear rises up. Am I “losing my mind?”.

It begins to dawn on you that you are starting all over again. In many ways, you are back at a very early age when you explored the world for the first time. It is both amazing and a little frightening.

This disorientation effects your balance and movement. You become a little unsteady on your feet. You are more prone to stumble over objects or miss a step at a curb.

When you drive, you may find yourself uncertain and confused as you reach a busy intersection. You begin to question your ability to judge distance of other vehicles or how fast they are traveling.

Your point of view has become more expanded and more global. You might spot a flower and in that moment, the flower opens up and absorbs you. You become fascinated by its magical qualities. In that moment, there is nothing in the world except you and that flower.

Linear thought is more difficult. Holding details in your mind is difficult. Your memory is shot. Sustained concentration and linear thinking drains your energy. You can do it, but it takes much more effort than before.

This will take a lot of getting used to. Years in fact.

The Awareness of Being Awake

Before your awakening, you might have thought that enlightenment, being the culmination of all your spiritual endeavors, would be accompanied by the feeling of joy and bliss. Surely it would be ecstatic.

In fact, life is now very ordinary. More ordinary even than your old life. Before, you were able to inject drama and emotion into your reality, Your life had juiciness. You had the highs. You had the lows. You had the bad. You had the good. You had the sweet. You had the sour. Nothing like a little drama to keep life interesting.

The drama is now gone. In its place you simply experience a quiet serenity. The most you can muster up is the gentle feeling of contentment. Life is simply what is before you in each moment. That is the full extent of your reality.

Your Personal Frame Of Reference Is Gone

Over the years your experience of being a “me” lead you to see the world in a specifically me-centered way. In a way you had become the center of your own universe. Your experience of life conformed to your own personal beliefs about reality.

This is no longer the case. You no longer feel as if you are a personality, a unique human being. Gone is your “me”-centric consciousness. Gone is the familiar world of your projections and your interpretations. Gone is the split between your outer public life and your private inner life. Now you only feel a gauzy emptiness inside you.

The personal shaping of reality is gone. Instead, you are seeing the world as it is. But without the personalizing effect, the process feels strange and unsettling.

The personalizing process gave you a familiar world. Even if there was a lot about your world that you did not like, it was always familiar because it was always a reality of your own making. There was something comforting in this familiarity.

That is gone. The world is no longer personal. It is no longer about you. It is no longer about what the world is going to do for you, or bring you, or enable you to achieve.

The world is simply what it is, an impersonal presence that you can experience on its terms rather than your own.

Your Perspective On The World Is Different

You no longer have a personal perspective on life. You now see things from a detached point of view. What other people do has nothing to do with you. You no longer personalize their actions or ascribe motivation to what they do and say. They are who they are. The do what they do. That is just the way it is.

Gone are the expectations for the way life is supposed to be. Gone are the judgements about how other people should behave. Gone is the sense that some things a right while other things are wrong.. There is just life, doing what life does.

In time you will adjust to your new condition. But your perceptual field and your personal point of view will never return to what they had been.

You Respond to the Movement of the Moment

When you had a private inner life, you focused on your thoughts, your self-talk, your emotions, your inner sensations. All this is largely gone. In its place is a much subtler movement of energy. This inner movement of energy is your interface with the Flow of Life. This inner movement is direction your attention in a particular way. You open to this movement and where it may be leading you.

You sense that you should pay attention to this movement. How strong is the impulse to move? Does it suggest a direction for you to follow? Is your inner movement a response to something going on outside the body?

This movement directs your attention to things you might do, people you might talk to, directions you might take with your life. You begin to trust your own inner ability to read the movement in the moment.

There is a freedom in this. You no longer have to make things happen. You no longer have to try to figure out what is right and what is wrong, what you should do and what you should avoid.

Now it is simply a matter of recognizing and following your inner impulse. You notice a natural rhythm that starts within you, moves through your inner world and seeks for some expression of itself in the outer world.

Your sense of yourself is now beginning to shift. Up until now you have been focused on adjusting to your new situation. You have been like a child that is learning all about the ways of the world. Now you feel more like a young adult. You have a settled sense of the way the world is. Now the question becomes: how do I live in this new world?

A New Kind Of Life Within You

You start to realize that there is a vast universe that is not only outside of you, it is also inside of you. The movement you feel arises within you and seeks expression through you. Life is asking you to participate in the movement of reality from its origins in the inner world and the need to express it in the outer world.

This movement also works in reverse. That is, you start to see the beauty in the world around you and to bring that into your inner world. Wherever you are there is beauty. Life is beautiful and life is everywhere. Life invites you to recognize its beauty. It encourages you to see that this beauty is not separate from who you are.

More and more you see that everything is one. At our core, we are all an expression of the one thing. Just the one thing. Simple. But hard to adjust to.

Your inner world is one single universe. Your outer world is pluralistic. You try to figure out how to express this inner oneness to an outer world that is fragmented. You look for ways by which the One can expressed and be recognized by others for what it is.

Enlightenment is a state of constant becoming. There is no beginning. There is no end. There is only a sense of continual unfolding as you become more familiar with living at the intersection of your inner world and your outer world. You are no longer living life. Life is now living you.

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