The Path of Awakening…

The path of awakening is not an easy path, as I have been finding out over the past 40 years. Truly, there have been wonderful moments of awakening, but then I would fall back into the pursuit of money for the support of myself and my family. After a while, I caught myself and began walking the path of awakening according to the teachings of the Buddha and Zen Master Thich Nhat Hanh. This was 1984.

Cancer treatments in the late 1990’s were also mixed with moments of awakening, as unlikely as this sounds. One day, during a guided imagery session with Leslie Davenport, I entered a moment of awakening as I recognized the value of choosing the “road not taken” and advocating for myself. You can read more about this experience in Healing with the Seven Principles of Mindfulness.

Adyashanti echos these teachings in this Tricycle quote:

Enlightenment Isn’t Perfect

We must give up the pursuit of positive emotional states through spiritual practice. The path of awakening is not about positive emotions. On the contrary, enlightenment may not be easy or positive at all. It is not easy to have our illusions crushed. It is not easy to let go of long-held perceptions. We may experience great resistance to seeing through even those illusions that cause us a great amount of pain.

—Adyashanti, “Bliss is a By-Product”
We Make the Path by Walking It

As I come out of a period of great stress after the launch of my book, I utilize these teachings to go back to the island of myself and reaffirm my commitment to the path of awakening. The bumps in the night simply cause moments of suffering that are troubling at the moment, but the insight of impermanence helps me to realize that they would pass. As Reb Zalman would say, “This, too, shall pass!”

Some people say that it takes a lot of courage to enter the path of awakening. What do you think? What have you experienced?

Books by Adyashanti

The End of Your World: Uncensored Straight Talk on the Nature of Enlightenment

by Adyashanti

More and more people are “waking up” spiritually. And for most of them, the question becomes: now what? “Information about life after awakening is usually not made public,” explains Adyashanti. “It’s… [Read More…]

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