To say that you’re enlightened is to demonstrate that you’re not. What’s interesting is that we’re all enlightened. We just seem to have forgotten about it, or misplaced it, or started believing the things we told ourselves as kids.
In my last post I referred to my most enlightened experience and a commenter and friend had the logical question, “What was your most enlightened experience?” It’s the type of conversation that flows much more gracefully in the spoken word because you can hear how it lands, if the person receiving the story is with you on the journey or if they’re missing the whole experience. That was the way it occurred when I brought it up. I’ve really only shared the event with two people, my wife who listens to all of my brilliant soliloquies, and that colleague.
Here I’m going to attempt a much more daring feat. I’m also going to be brief. You can make up what you like about whether or not this was a moment of enlightenment, and surely you will. It’s very possible you’ll discount it because that’s what we do and that’s why most of us don’t really notice that we’re already enlightened. Whatever description I give it will be inadequate regardless. Being enlightened must be experienced. It must be experienced right now. You also may want to use it to justify a religion or your religion, or invalidate a religion (or your religion). Don’t. Where I was doesn’t matter. And yes, I regularly attend Roman Catholic church.
I stood in a pew, in a church, with an enclosed ceiling. There weren’t a lot of stain glassed windows in this particular church and the ones that were there weren’t very large and they definitely weren’t near me. In the time leading up to this “phenomenon” I’d just gotten very clear about who I am, about who I’d always been. Love present and experienced.
I stood during a blessing being given to some people that had been married a long time, and my eyes were closed. Light shone down on me, through me really. I felt its warmth and the warmth that I felt was Love. This light extended out through me as if it was coming down on me but as I was a part of it. In my mind it appeared there was a large opening above me and off to the side of me allowing the full rays of the sun to shine down and wash over me.
Standing there basking in that warmth, not doing anything but also not not doing anything, I experienced what was. I experienced myself as part of all of it, part of that light and warmth that extended out through my body into all things. I was that light yet the light was me. I was whole and one. I was you and you were me. I was wood and stone. All those things were love, lit up and warm.
I began thinking more than being, wanting understanding more than wanting experiencing and I opened my eyes to see if there was a window above me, or if there was light shining through a window off to the side. There wasn’t and I was just back in the church, grateful to know that we’re all loved so deeply.
I’ve had other englightened experiences including my favorite and most absurd where I experienced the complete perfection of a pile of dirt with one of those wooden, stand-up road barriers standing on it in the middle of a road construction site. God, it was so beautiful. It all is, when there’s no concealment. It took me a great number of years after that dirt pile to know a word that accurately portrayed the experience as experienced. Aletheia.
With Love and the Warmth of the Sun,