Gradual or Immediate Awekening

Discussion in 'Modern and Contemporary Approaches' started by Aiming Higher, Feb 9, 2015.

  1. Aiming Higher

    Aiming Higher Seeker

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    Hello all.
    I have been contemplating and searching different school of thoughts about awakening consciousness and have some thoughts about it.
    I am not speaking from an experience, but after contemplating and meditating these things came to my mind.

    Is it possible to have a sudden awakening?
    Yes, it is possible, but it is not as common, as some may think.
    Yes,Buddha did have it, but he went through a lot of self inquiry and thinking, until he finally realised the truth.
    As I mentioned, it can, has and will happen to some people suddenly, but I am of the opinion, that it is rare phenomenon indeed.
    Many Advaita teachers claim to have awakened, but how many are truly awakened?
    If awakening occurs only intellectually, it might not be full awakening.
    I believe, there must me more to it.
    Actually, not many of those so, experienced, have started to teach of love,mercy,compassion,helping less fortunate,etc...
    There was even one teacher, who claimed to been awakened, but still closed his eyes from millions of poor people, who lived nearby.

    Among some circles, people are edging insanity, because the promised awakening didn't happen.

    The point I am making is, that gradual step by step approach to awakening is more natural way for most of us anyway.
    This way we will have time to 'ripen' and getting ready as the truth unfolds itself to us.
    It's like we have multiple layer of skin on us, that need to be peeled off one by one and helping us to be ready and mature enough to that full awakening experience.
    Awakening is probably like growing process or maturing process, which will naturally unfold itself as we seek it.
    Of course the Universal Consciousness is already complete unchanged in us and we ultimately are that,but the cosmic law works it's own perfect way for each one of us.
    So sudden awakening happens to those,who are ready for it, for rest of us it happens in it's own course according to our ability to absorb and realise it.
    These were my thoughts and you may disagree with me and that's fine.
    The ultimate truth is kind of hidden from all of us to the extent to know it 100%
    But we're on our way to get it, sooner or later.

    John.
     
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  2. Karin

    Karin Vanguard

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    I agree. :)

    I can add that in my opinion, a large part of the 'awakening' process happens in unexpected ways, and we cannot possibly know how it will happen for ourselves, only observe how it is happening in the moment, and reflect on how it happened.

    I can also add that it can also start happening in people who were absolutely NOT seeking it at a conscious/personality level and didn't even know any such thing as 'awakening' existed.
     
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  3. Aiming Higher

    Aiming Higher Seeker

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    Yes Karin, that's is exactly so.
    Awakening happens, when we are ready.
    We can not possibly self initiate it.
     
  4. jub jub

    jub jub Navigator Staff Member

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  5. Karin

    Karin Vanguard

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    I just came across this video that illustrate the case of out-of-the-blue awakening and thought I would share here. These two young ladies used to be materialistic/narcissistic NY fashionistas. I do like the reference to Paul Selig's 'I Am The Word' book, which I also benefitted a lot from. It also familiarized me with energy sensations and frequency changes, I highly recommend it especially for beginners.

    Awakening Kundalini with Val and Ali
     
  6. GuyRichardson

    GuyRichardson Sojourner

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    I felt as if mine went gradual but I had sort of bursts in understanding, strange and difficult to explain but it was a bumpy ride and continues to be.
     
  7. MtnGoat

    MtnGoat Voyager

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    When an infant is born, it is sudden in a day and with great labor. How long is it before an infant recognizes its own hand? When teething, do all the teeth appear suddenly one day? No, they arrive slowing and with discomfort. Does the child not crawl before it walks, and walks before it runs? And how long before that child grows and becomes aware that there is a time for its own reproduction and then care for its own? Doesn't all this take place with considerable attention, effort, and guidance by others training the child?

    The geminating seed may suddenly break its husk, only to wait for the moment to push beyond the soil, then to wait longer for signs of significant leafs and on it goes, from moments to moments. Looking at what we see all around us, why would one expect that an awakening would be sudden, and if sudden that it would be complete, and what is complete awareness?

    From the child's progress of recongizing its own hand, to knowing parents, to knowing friends to play with, knowing one's mate.... awareness is developmental and a continuinng process. Capabilities come in their assigned time.
     
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  8. Nameless

    Nameless Voyager

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    Sure it's possible to have a sudden and spontaneous awaking. But the truth, I really don't think even Buddha could answer that.
    An awakening just means that you finally understand the bigger picture of whatever it is you are looking at. These happen to every one through out their lives. Like how a man may not fully understand the miracle of birth till his own son arrives. Or a woman may not understand how or why her mother tolerated some of the things she did till she finds herself in the same position. Or the surgeon, having given his all still loses his first patient. Those are all awakenings.

    Terms like awakening and enlightenment are not all encompassing words. The seeker may wake up and realize that there is an existence above, beyond and outside of themselves but that is not an automatic pass to say they hold the truth. We wake up to many truths everyday, some of those truths touch no one but ourselves yet some of those truths are profound in that they apply to life or to mankind as a whole. Doesn't matter in the least that a person wakes up it's what they do with it that counts.

    We've got to get passed this idea that the awakened are somehow more than or better than. I've had light bulbs go off in my head. I've had the wake-up call. I am being primed for something. None of that however makes me any more enlightened than anyone else.

    I might be wrong but wasn't it one of those enlightened individuals that sat under a tree for years. He left his wife and children for all that time to be taken care of by others while he sat on his butt and daydreamed. Seriously, what's so enlightened about that?
     
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  9. Shu-Man

    Shu-Man Voyager

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    If you studied Buddhism you would see that they are miles ahead of us. Buddha is a good reason for that. Never underestimate the teachings of the original Masters.
    Those are all "experiences" one may have in their lifetime here. There is a difference between "awakening" and experiencing, at least there is in all of those examples.

    I like this explanation of Awakening. Once again Eckhart Tolle was right on the money.


    What is awakening?
    [​IMG]
    Awakening is a shift in consciousness in which thinking and awareness separate. For most people it is not an event but a process they undergo. Even those rare beings who experience a sudden, dramatic, and seemingly irreversible awakening will still go through a process in which the new state of consciousness gradually flows into and transforms everything they do and so becomes integrated into their lives.

    Instead of being lost in your thinking, when you are awake you recognize yourself as the awareness behind it. Thinking then ceases to be a self-serving autonomous activity that takes possession of you and runs your life. Awareness takes over from thinking. Instead of being in charge of your life, thinking becomes the servant of awareness. Awareness is conscious connection with universal intelligence. Another word for it is Presence; consciousness without thought.

    The initiation of the awakening process is an act of grace. You cannot make it happen nor can you prepare yourself for it or accumulate credits towards it. There isn't a tidy sequence of logical steps that leads toward it, although the mind would love that. You don't have to become worthy first. It may come to the sinner before it comes to the saint, but not necessarily.

    There is nothing you can do about awakening. Whatever you do will be the ego trying to add awakening or enlightenment to itself as its most prized possession and thereby making itself more important and bigger. Instead of awakening, you add the concept of awakening to your mind, or the mental image of what an awakend or enlightened person is like, and then try to live up to that image. Living up to an image that you have of yourself or that other people have of you is inauthentic living - another unconscious role the ego plays.

    Only the first awakening, the first glimpse of consciousness without thought, happens by grace, without any doing on your part. Once it has done so, it cannot be reversed, although it can be delayed by the ego.

    For some, the awakening happens as they suddenly become aware of the kinds of thoughts they habitually think, especially persistent negative thoughts that they may have been identified with all of their lives. Suddenly there is an awareness that is aware of the thought but is not part of it.

    Once you have had a glimpse of awareness or Presence, you know it firsthand. It is no longer just a concept in your mind. You can then make a conscious choice to be present rather than to indulge in useless thinking. You can invite Presence into your life, that is to say, make space. With the grace of awakening comes responsibility. You can either try to go on as if nothing happened, or you can see its significance and recognize the arising of awareness at the most important thing that can happen to you. Opening yourself to the emerging consciousness and bringing its light into this world then becomes the primary purpose in your life.

    So while you are perhaps still waiting for something significant to happen in your life, you may not realize that the most significant thing that can happen to a human being has already happened within you: the beginning of the separation process of thinking and awareness.

    Many people who are going through the early stages of the awakening process are no longer certain what their outer purpose is. What drives the world no longer drives them. Seeing the madness of our civilization so clearly, they may feel somewhat alienated from the culture around them. Some feel that they inhabit a no-man's-land between two worlds. They are no longer run by the ego, yet the arising awareness has not yet become fully integrated into their lives. Inner and outer purpose have not merged.

    Excerpt from:A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose
    by Eckhart Tolle

    (2005)
     
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  10. Nameless

    Nameless Voyager

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    I do agree and do get where you are coming from. I read back over my previous response and realized how it may come across a bit different than intended. I was aiming at the misinformation where so many do think they can obtain it by forcing an AP. Anyway, I'll stop now before I cause more confusion.
     
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  11. subtle traveler

    subtle traveler Navigator

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    Generally, I do not see eastern as better than western. I kind of see it as another duality of this plane.

    However, reading Eckhart Tolle changed, shifted, awakened (whatever people want to call that for themselves) me. It was a relief from the dogma of thought forms I was experiencing. Tolle demonstrates very quickly and clearly that how we point to things when we communicate matters (a lot), because so many are stuck on some kind of label and the eventual attachment to that label.

    One thing that has surprised me over the years is that I have not heard Tolle speak directly about multi-dimensionality and manifestations like OBE's and astral projection. For all the conscious awareness he intends, he apparently prefers being in his body to experience that. It is because of that, that I have not read one of his books in years. I still get present moment reminders in my email box on a regular basis (and read every one of them).
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2016
  12. 8080

    8080 Sojourner

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    This is an interesting question. From my perspective, its a matter of surrender and its relationship to awakening. For me it was a combination of both. If you are ready and your surrender is total or has a completeness, then you can become aware of your true nature (awareness as tolle put it) today, right this moment. If your surrender is slower or more gradual, then so will be your awakening, but either way, what you think you are what you know yourself to be has to go. Some nuts are tougher to crack. :)
     
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  13. MtnGoat

    MtnGoat Voyager

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    Surrender? To who or what? In my opionion....

    Surrender is a popular word in many religious and cult groups that teach, or demand, one surrender to someone's will - their will; more directly that one submit... submit to God's Will. Surrender also has the notion of some combat; recognizing the losing battle. In the sense of what ST said..."the relief from the dogma of thought forms"... illustrates what the combat is. In this sense what has happened for the indivudual is that one has because exhaust with their own 'struggle' with their own belief system however it has been acquired. At that point one 'may' learn a new point of view, move into another belief system, realize the dynamics of certain dualities. (This is not to say belief systems are bad) These are tiny awakenings, that are more like realizations, coming into new understandings. How many people are 'turned-on' in school simply by the experience of learning fresh and new concepts? Their awakening.

    In this sense the relationship to the awakening, as I think you are refering, is that one comes into alignment with the purposes of higher awarenesses. One does not surrender one's will or one's mind to something. One has learned something, a new understanding with which one is able to join in to the shared conscious of those higher awarenesses (perhaps it was revealed per some greater purpose); that is, one may come into communion (or brought into communion) with the common mind of that group. Here one becomes aware of higher purposes as a result of the 'common mind' they share, that one has participated in for some moments. This is 'a' awakening. But one does not surrender to it. One aligns one's will with that purpose and then is in concert with thatt greater consciousness. One aligns their will as a result of understanding some value/characteristic/truth that one apprehends as the thing to do, or the way to be. No it is not yet the great Universal Conscious, but one's mind has ascended a bit.

    It is not about surrendering one's will, or possessions, or life to something. One may need to let go of things. That is true, given man's nature. It is about learning a new scope o understanding and gaining the resulting judgement; a judgement potentially implemented via one's will, that serves greater purposes. The captain of a ship at sea, facing starless nights, storming winds, raging seas, tides that drives one onto the rocks, uses his or her 'judgement' in piloting that ship. The captain does not surrender his ship and crew to the sea. This is one reason why we have free will; for it to be implemented.

    Rather than surrender, one simply needs to spend time coming to the quiet place where one may glimpse or listen to the greater principles that are available to be apprehended. That, however, may be very difficult to do depending on the turmoil and chaos in one's life. Perhaps do to the struggles exhaustion one's mind finally stopped for a moment to listen. This is a common senario for humans, advancing spiritually as a result of some struggle.

    .... in my opinion.
     
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  14. subtle traveler

    subtle traveler Navigator

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    Hi 8080 ... first, welcome to the EIC forum!

    In regards to surrendering to the present moment, I see it similarly ... although I word it a bit differently for myself these days ... I point to it now as "releasing resistance" to the present moment. And as resistance reduces, then I am able to build more momentum.
     
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  15. 8080

    8080 Sojourner

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    Hello Mtn Goat! In terms of awakening, there seems to be some murkiness. My definition being total awakening, not necessarily insights but the full realization of your authentic being. This stuff can be impossible to convey and mostly we will end up talking in circles unable to bridge a gap that is real and illusory at the same time.

    The "one" you speak of is where i may see a hole or an entry point. When you say "one" i see totality, all-ness, everything, awareness, non-duality whatever you want to call it. I don't see "one" as a separate entity who has room for concept or judgement or even "ones own will separate from the totality of existence." There comes a point where ownership no longer applies as regards to will, or possessions or piloting a ship. I turned over the helm a few years ago and this winks at what surrender may be but doesn't truly do it justice, its just too subjective to convey.
     
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  16. 8080

    8080 Sojourner

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    Thanks ST! Really enjoy reading you guys' travel journals, shout out to Karin (fun read), it took me a few days to get through them but they were great!
     
  17. MtnGoat

    MtnGoat Voyager

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    Yes, putting these things into words is quite murky. Many notions are given to us in words or images that we can only understand in our terms, but these terms are pretty simple and attempts to describe some things (places, individuals, gods) that are symbolically immense isn't easy. I find that total awakening...knowing one's authentic being, also comes in steps. Knowing who and what one truly is may also come as a great surprise and may be very difficult to absorb the full meaning and reality.

    Oops. The "one" I was refering to was a grammatical identity. One as is "One ought to brush one's teeth". In terms of the totality you refer to, I call that Source. Some call it God, but that has many mixed connotations, tho many of the gods people think of do exist in more abstract forms. Some adopted the coined phrase the "I AM", but I find there is no 'I' in the Source. The Source is neither a 'what' or a 'who'. The Source "IS". It is the existence and fabric of all that Is; the Creative Source on which all originates and depends. In that sense nothing is seperate from it, however each created thing is seperate by virture of having be given an identify. You are you because of the distinction that allows you to be you. In this sense you and all created things have been distinguished from, or separated from Source. This is intended by the Source, it is not a defect or lower state. It is a large aspect of creating.

    I think now that what you refer to as surrender, I would call 'acceptance'. It coming to the place of knowing something...beyond faith.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2017
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  18. CFTraveler

    CFTraveler Navigator Staff Member

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    To me the process is like making soup. You have a bunch of ingredients, and then all of a sudden-pow- it's soup.
     
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  19. Bee

    Bee Navigator Staff Member

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    I guess I took the idea of surrender, as such, as a point where you're willing to give up the teddy bears(certain earthly beliefs) and begin to understand the struggle of what it is to grow up...So to speak.
     
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