In a moment of nostalgia I flicked back over some posts from my old blog.
I came across this one (copied below) from 28th May 2007 and was astounded at my brilliant insights and fluidity of writing back then.
"Gee whizz", I thought, "in 5 years I've totally lost all ability to think deeply and articulate poetically about the inner spiritual journey."
A few minutes later, I realised it was actually a quote from "Essence with The Elixir of Enlightenment” by A. H. Almaas.
Ha, I haven't lost it, I never had it!
But how inspiring to read this again...
“The desire for freedom, liberation, enlightenment, self-realization, inner development or whatever it is called is not a response to a call from outside you. It is not that you hear of enlightenment and then you want to be enlightened. It is not embarking on the journey because other people you know are on it. It is not a fad.
It is not a desire for self-improvement. It is not an attempt to be some kind of an ideal model you have in your mind, It is not doing something according to some beliefs and opinions you have picked up someplace, recently or in the far past.
The search is a very personal concern, an intimately personal interest in your situation. It is a response to a call deep within you. The call at the beginning is a vague, almost imperceptible and mysterious flame. It shows itself as a questioning of the disharmony you live in. It is your disharmony, as you experience it. It is your own questioning. And it is your personal yearning.
The stirring must come from you, from your depths. The questioning must be of your situation, your mind, not of some system that somebody else has set up. You can use the system to help you, but ultimately it is your life, your mind, your quest.
Enlightenment cannot be according to any system. It has to resolve and clarify your own situation. The realization must satisfy and fulfil your heart, not the standards of some system. The liberation must be of you, you personally.
The quest does not bring about improvement or perfection. It brings about a maturity, a humanity, and a wisdom.
The moment essence (God/The Divine/The Source) is recognized as one’s being and experienced as such, a radical transformation occurs.
One’s life will never be the same.
Although the transformation can be total, it is usually partial. Nevertheless it is a radical transformation: the person knows for the first time what being is and that it is his true nature. This discovery initiates the process of inner transforation. The mind and personality are clarified steadily, and objectivity becomes more and more complete. Essence transubstantiates into its various aspects and dimensions.
Life is no longer the exclusive domain of the personality. As essence unfolds and expands, it exposes deeper and more basic sectors of the personality, bringing about knowledge and objectivity. And these in turn allow essence to displace the personality on more and more dimensions.
Life stops being the life of strife and frustration, the wish for success and the fear of failure. More than anything else, life becomes a process of creative discovery and discovery itself becomes the heart of life.
The unfolding of essence becomes the process of living. As this unfolding proceeds, it affects the mind, the personality, and the external life. The identity starts shifting from personality to essence. The individual starts experiencing himself as essence instead of the experiencer of essence.
Commitment to the truth is sufficient for the process to unfold.
It is a matter of letting go of the ego identity and living from the essence that is already present. One’s life with all its situations, comes into focus. One’s style of life – how one leads one’s life in all its aspects – becomes understood and modified accordingly. The individual becomes aware of his environment and ascertains whether it supports or inhibits the life of essence. Everything, everypart of one’s life, inner or outer, becomes conscious, no longer under the sway of the unconscious. This is very deep and involved work. It leads to responsibility and maturity.
One must shift the identity from ego to the essence. This is the most difficult part of the process. Even after essence in its various aspects is uncovered and freed, the individual finds that he still believes in his personality. The essence is present, but the individual still thinks of himself and very often acts if he is not paying attention, as if her is the personality. That is why the death of this identity is so strongly stressed by all true teachings.
This does not mean, as some teachings have it, that the individual must experience the essential self all the time, that he must hold onto it as the most precious thing. What needs to happen is to free this aspect of essence for it to become a station, to become permanently available so that it is there when its mode of operation is needed.
Experiences of ego death occur here. Inner aloneness is accepted. Personal boundaries dissolve. One starts to understand and experience boundlessness, timelessness, not doing, innocence, and purity. Essence and mind start becoming one.
Living one’s life and the work on oneself become one thing. The shift of identity from personality to essence is nothing but the realization of the true self, the high self of essence. Realization then becomes more and more expressed in living, in action. Practical action becomes the action of the true being. There is efficiency, economy, simplicity, directness. One fully lives in the world but is constantly connected to the Beyond, the Supreme Reality."