Heart Opening Moments

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What Can Enlightenment Do for You?

In Southern California, our idea of spirituality is "it is ALL ABOUT ME!"

In Southern California, our idea of spirituality is “it is ALL ABOUT ME!”

A friend came to visit. He excitedly told me how the universe gave him everything he wanted from meeting celebrities to being on TV without the chance to allow himself to take a full breath. “I must be in such high vibration that everything’s working out for ME!”

Smiling, without a word, I served him a cold iced-tea with a piece of freshly cut white peach on the side. He pushed it aside and went on to tell me about how people everywhere are stopping with envious stares since he got his amazing six-pack…

In Southern California, there’s a culture of speaking of such things as “cleanse”, “mindfulness”, “detox”, “healing”, “meditation”, “organic”, “yoga”, “reiki”, “zen”, “juicing”, “being in alignment”, “high vibration”,  “unity”, “love”, “enlightenment”… The list goes on and on. Lots of us here eat organic to be in a higher vibration – not as an aware expression but as a concept – for the purpose of becoming better.

In more ways than one, we use yoga, meditation or anything “spiritual” for our own personal gain. When I do an “OM” chanting practice, I can do it in several different ways – 1. I can use it to show those around me how peaceful and spiritual I am, 2. I can use it to open up my energy so my life can run more smoothly; or 3. I can do it with subtle awareness and witness the interconnections and changes as each “OM” progressively expresses through my body. For these three ways, these actions are exactly the same, yet the essence of each are completely different.

Consciously or unconsciously we are always asking “what can Enlightenment do for ME?”

Our collective ego structure is always interested in how to feel better. We find shortcuts in life and indulge ourselves in momentary pleasures often resulting in long drawn-out pain. We use alcohol, television, sports, sex, fashion, games, relationships, politics as ways to escape reality, as ways to turn away from looking within ourselves. As a result, we put on a false mask along with lavishly decorated armors to show the world who we pretend to be.

smart sexy personality purchase

Now this smart sexy personality can be purchased on ebay!

A young lady posts her intellectual achievements, re-shares the latest scientific discoveries, and shows-off how charismatically smart she is so she can gain the approval of her friends – only to find no matter how hard she tries to impress, she still felt like a black hole inside.

La Vérité - Truth (1870), Jules Joseph Lefebvre, oil on canvas, Musée d'Orsay, Paris, France.

La Vérité – Truth (1870), Jules Joseph Lefebvre, oil on canvas, Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France.

An older man got married to a glamorous “trophy” – only to discover 15 years later that he’s trapped in a marriage without ever experiencing true love.

Amy’s Baking Company asked Chef Ramsey to help improve their business, only to not take any feedback and decide that everyone else is wrong. The owners blamed the internet haters and never for a second quietly took a look to see if they themselves are to blame.

Like Chef Ramsey, Enlightenment is not shy to serve you a plate of truth. You might overlook and ignore it for a while, but eventually it will slap you in the face until you wake up to the reality you’ve been avoiding for years.

Yup, I’ve been there. I’ve experienced the personal ego structure to the most delusional level and felt the collective ego structure on the most fundamental level within my own being. Our ego structure cares feverishly about the outer appearances of things while pushing aside the gut feelings, and ignoring the simplest truth.

The last time I witnessed myself asking “what can Enlightenment do for me?” I didn’t expect the honest truth it served me in such a timely manner. I got to look within myself and saw how egotistical my whole life was. All aspects of my life had been contaminated by a self-importance, self-consciousness, fear of failure, fear of looking bad, fear of rejection, a need to be accepted, a need to show-off, and the list goes on and on. I was that young lady, I was that older man, I was the owners of Amy’s Baking Company, and I too once played all parts in these roles. When I looked for what Enlightenment can do for me, I had hoped for a chance to win a million dollars, a top of the line sports car, or a way to look young and beautiful forever. Instead, Enlightenment has a different sense of humor.

For me, Enlightenment was holding up a mirror to reflect where my life was lived as a way to put on a show. It unveiled the naked truth that I avoided for so long – in every area and every moment of my life. I could not run away any longer. This time, I was stripped naked by Enlightenment, with a magnifying glass to examine each and every part of my self, my belief structure, and my hardened delusions. Then it took a scalpel, and surgically removed each and every untruth as they are being revealed – sometimes with insurmountable pain, other times with gentle awareness. The surgery is not complete. It has to be done over time. A time reveals more truth when each moment presents itself.

So if you found yourself asking “what can Enlightenment do for me?” If you are not ready for the truth, run the other way as fast as you can. Because Truth has a way of catching up to you if you are not careful. For some people, they can run and hide until Death comes to claim them. If you happen to slip and fall, know that Truth in her naked form will come with her bright mirror held up high and show you the truth regardless if you want it or not. Usually after putting up a fight, most of us can no longer keep up turning the other way in denials. There is a point that Truth will bring the arrival of Judgment Day when you are least expecting – and blows your masks and armors away without an apology. Truth is not nice. She is Truth. And Truth always wins.

What can Enlightenment do for you?

Enlightenment will strip you clean layer by layer until you recognize the naked truth of who you really are – Empty, Rich, Simple, Love, and Beautiful.

(A special Thanks to this simple and yet honest blog from Dragon Rider One.) 

September 2, 2013 Posted by | Choices, Enlightenment, Inner Growth, Self Realization | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Freedom from Untruth

Are we covering ourselves with a shield of untruth masking who we really are?

Are we covering ourselves with a shield of untruth masking who we really are?

Unlike how I’ve imagined, after awakening, our identification and attachments don’t melt into thin air in the snap of a finger. I’ve heard incidences that a few people can work through their karma load easily and quickly, but for most, it takes dedication and the help of grace to clear out all the remaining untruth. Once we’ve witnessed the truth and know in the depth of our being that we are consciousness itself, anything that is untrue tends to float to the surface so we can take a closer look with an open heart.

Last year I found myself unable to lie. This happened right after my explosive weeks of awakening. I walked down the street and saw how people pretend to be asleep and they soak themselves in the lies they created. It is almost like a fantasy bubble – each and every one of them protects themselves in it. People are attached to their stories and like to tell their stories – in a way they define themselves with their past and what they believe in. For a while, it was very difficult for me to relate as if I were a newborn and I didn’t have a past. My senses could only be rooted in what is happening now that I didn’t have a story even if I searched for one. I didn’t mind listening to other people’s stories as I deeply felt what they were going through. When it was time for me to share something about myself I couldn’t conjure up anything at all. My past seemed insignificant in comparison to the present. To me there is only the present and nothing else. Yet nearly everyone around me lived in the past or was aiming for a fantasy future. At the time I thought if people truly become intimate with one another based on their attachments, beliefs, or even their shared hopes for the future, I will no longer be able to experience intimacy with people on that level again. There were moments of grief. For a while, I tried to push myself back in the game of pretending again, unsuccessfully. Every time I would say something out of alignment with the truth of the moment my body would feel so twisted up inside with nausea that I had to admit my mistake and move back to complete honesty again.

It has been one year now. What I’ve noticed is our body and our energy are all affected by the untruth we tell ourselves on one level or another. If I were to believe that I am not well, my body would shrink down, I would slouch a bit, and react in such a way to match my belief. This identification with the belief actually comes even before the appearance of a thought. In a way, any identification system formed the structure that allowed us to grow up in an environment safely. Early in life when we had to navigate our environment  it served a purpose – kept us safe. As we progress on our spiritual path these structures might become too constricting or ill-fitted altogether. Like a big fish in a small pond, as the fish grows in size, it needs to find a bigger pond – a more suitable environment. The same goes for us. As we grow physically, emotionally, spiritually to our full potential, our old structures might no longer fit. This is when struggles or internal conflicts might occur. In a way, like the ever expanding universe, we are growing beyond old dimensions, so somehow, with awareness, we need to uncover the structure we need to let go, and melt into the new truth of NOW.

When we speak of untruth, it really refers to a false identification of our past belief structure that’s outdated. This is where psychology and spirituality can co-exist as we bring awareness to see what is not true that is creating discomfort within us. I have a beautiful fuchsia plant. She is tall, beautiful, slightly timid in full pale pink blossoms. Because she grew up within a structure that limited her upward growth, she twisted herself around the obstacle in order to get a glimpse of the sun. She had to bend her spine in order to survive. One day, I gently moved her away from that confining structure and give her a much bigger home with plenty of sun, food, shade, and water. Within a few days, she had miraculously straightened her spine and opened up herself to new heights. She no longer looked timid, but instead, she enjoyed her newly found freedom.

We too are as such. We are also just a part of nature with an innate ability to adjust to each moment anew. Yet, it is our attachment to old identifications that holds us in our old patterns unable to fully express our wholeness. Some might call it ego-identification, egoic nature, false beliefs, etc. Either way, as we progress we must reassess our current state without the clutter of old definitions that hold us back. Whenever we find ourselves contracting or shrinking down physically or energetically, we can use this opportunity to examine what we are still holding onto that is no longer true. Often times by seeing our identifications without judgement we can remember why that particular structure served us once upon a time. And how it was useful at the time. By seeing it with compassion we can then move into a more clear space of the now, with clarity to let go if that is the truth of the moment.

Some spiritual paths help us to strengthen our inner truth to push out any untruth. Other spiritual paths help us uncover untruth and polish clean ourselves to surface one’s true nature. For me, it has been extremely helpful to do both at various times. For a while, life took me onto a path with incredible grace as if the whole core of my body is filled with strength and light that is growing in size, pushing outward. Other times I feel uncourageous and small, yet with the awareness to sense the origin of these feelings, I was able to find and let go untruth – and to fully breathe again.

June 17, 2013 Posted by | Choices, Death & Rebirth, Enlightenment, Inner Growth, Self Realization | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Inner Evolution for World Transformation

The power of love is infinite

The power of love is infinite

We’ve all done plenty of personal development and spiritual work throughout our lifetime. Does any of that actually matter? Does our own internal evolution send an uplifting aroma to the outside world? Does our loving conscious actions improve the well-being of our society? I’ve heard numerous claims such as “inner evolution for world transformation” from various leading edge spiritual teachers but I never truly believe it myself. How could the little subtle things I do within me make any difference to impact the world? That seemed not only improbable but it was almost narcissistic. Of course someone would make such a claim – in order to appear important!

Nevertheless, somewhere deep inside of me wondered if it is at all possible. If I’m loving,would the world become more loving? If I’m compassionate, would others become more compassionate as well? If I’m happy, would all the people around me live in that happiness as well? … The endless possibilities boiled within me and my curiosity wanted to know more. If at all these narcissistic claims are possible, how would I experience it or even capture that data?

I finally decided to conduct an informal scientific experiment – at the airport. I knew I had to find something to keep me intrigued while waiting in the endless lines at LAX, so why not make use of that time wisely? The objective – to find if my sincere openness and loving smiles would allow others to be more open and loving. The time – 6pm, May 6th, 2009. The place – LAX. The subjects – anyone I can naturally strike up a conversation with.

Subject #1 – The curb side assistant
Input – I smiled at him openly and nodded my head to acknowledge his presence.
Result – He quickly smiled back and started running to help me with my luggage.
Input – I said “thank you” sweetly.
Result – He glowed with love and said “you made my day sweetie.”

Subject #2 – The airport security
Input – I acknowledged him with my eyes as I walked pass him seeing the beauty inside of him underneath his hard emotionless professional mask.
Result – He softened and started to glow with happiness. Everyone around him seem to have been hit by this magnetic radiation as well without realizing what just happened. As I watched him from afar, all of a sudden he was giving helping hands to the elders and giving directions to the lost – with a sincere smile on his face! He later enthusiastically waved to me as I walked by the second time.

Subject #3
– The old lady in line behind me
Input – No one was conversing in line so I decided to strike up a conversation with the old lady behind me – with a smile.
Result – Laughter and smiles somehow penetrated each person like a domino effect. All of a sudden people were talking to each other about the weather, about traveling, and about secrets to happiness! Within 5 minutes, we were all introducing ourselves to one another and I’ve gained 10 new friends in the process.

Subject #4 – The carry on security check lady
Input – “Gosh, it smells like feet here!” I exclaimed with such intensity.
Result – She was grumpy and soon started laughing and replied “I wonder why?!” Suddenly she passed on my comment to several other attendees near by and we all started laughing.

Subject #5
– The Segway police officers
Input – “Awesomeness!!!” I exclaimed as I check out their new toys.
Result – Three Segway officers and I started chatting. One of them offered the other’s Segway for me to test drive. But we realized the security cameras are on, so someone would get in trouble if I actually got close to the Segways. They did give me demos such as the figure 8, two Segway dance, and top speed up a ramp. It was totally radical! By the end we were all laughing so hard and glad to be working our abs in the process.

SO – that was how I spent an hour of my pre-boarding time in LAX – conducting my experiments and having a blast!

Conclusion: My positive attitude and loving smiles do have an extraordinary impact on the world around me.
Discussion: I have asked why this was the case. Does that mean as I heal myself – through inner evolution, my state of being becomes more positive and fun loving naturally? Does this act  turn another opportunity for others to experience the warmth radiating through me? Does the power lie within the authenticity of my beingness? What is the scientific basis of this conscious infection? As I dive into this subject, there are only more questions floating to the surface. More experiences are needed for a greater conclusion and I hope we can all gather as much data as possible.

I hope you will conduct your own experiments and see if your attitude and actions have an impact on your world. I would love to hear about your experience during your own research on the quest of “inner evolution for world transformation.

 

May 6, 2009 Posted by | World Transformation | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment