Blog Title: Enlightenment or ignorance?

Date: Posted on: Categories Healing, Intuition, SpiritualityTags , , , , ,

question mark - flickrWhich would you choose?
Or do you in fact have to choose?

There are many times these days that I come across people who are on a quest to find “the answer”. They are understandably frustrated and struggling with challenges and seemingly insurmountable problems. They no longer want to be where they are. They are restless and dissatisfied. They want to be able to know and see and understand everything. They are seeking the answer to the meaning of the universe.

They believe that if they can find the ultimate answer, all their problems, challenges and difficulties will be eradicated, they will have arrived and they will be eternally happy.

Is this true? I can’t say for sure as I haven’t yet uncovered the true meaning of the universe. I haven’t arrived! However, I’m pretty sure that if and when I do “arrive”, I will no longer be in this body!

There is something I have learned, however, over the years – the path to conscious awareness and enlightenment is itself filled with challenges, problems, hurdles, obstacles and pain.

Perhaps those struggles you are in the midst of represent one of the many steps along YOUR PERSONAL PATH…… Rather than resist or give up, maybe embracing those challenges will allow you to gain more consciousness, awareness and enlightenment. Maybe you will more readily receive your answers.

After all, is arrival really the goal? Or is the journey itself your enlightenment?

For example, when reading a book, you may find yourself tempted to skip ahead to the end, especially when you come upon a part of the story that makes you uncomfortable or is painful, or is even a little dull. But if you do that, what experience and enjoyment have you missed out on and denied yourself along the way?

On the other hand, we all know the saying “ignorance is bliss”, and there is perhaps some validity to that at times. Being blissfully unaware may allow for a simple life, but what about growth and fulfillment?

Admittedly, we all need a timeout or a break at times. Particularly when there is so much turmoil and suffering everywhere we turn. Turning a blind eye, burying your head in the sand or covering your blinders - flickreyes and ears may prevent you from seeing the ugliness in the world, but while you have those blinders on what are you missing? What about all the wonders of the world, the beauty that is all around us?

Perhaps the answer is not to have to choose either end of the spectrum: neither enlightenment – leaping forward to find the answer, to arrive – nor ignorance – deciding to “stick”, to not move forward.

Instead, can you allow yourself to be both enlightened and ignorant at the same time? To have a conscious awareness and understanding of your life and yet not know everything?

One of the pitfalls of those on a quest for spiritual enlightenment is that when they decide they have arrived, there is a tendency to look down on those they perceive as less aware, less fortunate. Once they make this determination, they are trapped – they can no longer allow themselves to not know something – they have to have all the answers lest they be perceived to be one of the unenlightened!

And this is where their growth stops!

I am reminded of a paragraph from “Desiderata” by Max Erhmann.

…..”Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.

If you compare yourself to others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.”…….

Now, isn’t that the truth!

Personally, I believe we all vacillate between the states of enlightenment and ignorance continually throughout the course of our lifetime – finding an answer, and then outgrowing that answer…..

This is what keeps life interesting, challenging and enjoyable!

spectrum - flickrWhere are you in the spectrum right now?

Photos courtesy of flickr.

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