I asked some of my followers on Instagram what topics they would like for me to post about & enlightenment was one that came up. I have some experience with the enlightenment train so I wanted to write a more detailed post about it. The things that I talk about in this post & all of my blog posts are from my experience. I do not claim to be an expert on any topic other than my own experience. I have studied for myself to gain a greater understanding of who I am & why I act the way that I do. I put information out there to hopefully help others find the path that is best for them & to learn from painful lessons I had to learn. I do believe that experience gives us very valuable wisdom to avoid suffering but some of us have to go through it to grow so I understand if you need to experience things for yourself. Either way I hope your journey is as free from needless suffering as can be. So let's dive in shall we...
The topic of enlightenment goes right along with what I have chosen as a name for my coaching practice, Beyond the Guru. This is because people associate enlightenment with gurus. Those people who have made it to the proverbial mountain top. These people have ascended above the human experience & have mastered the spiritual quest for wisdom & understanding. It is also associated with the European Enlightenment movement of the 17th century where reason & individualism were the main ideals. Read my previous post about gurus to get a better understanding of how I feel about it personally. These people may have attained a level of wisdom & insight that has helped them to understand the way the world & more importantly themselves work. However, when they begin to bypass the harm they have done to others with spiritual principles then they are no better than those who take advantage of the helpless & hopeless.
The term spiritual bypassing comes to mind when I think of these float above types. They are harmful to other people & when they are called on their bullshit, they tell the victims of those trespasses things like the following:
1.We choose our lives before we incarnate so we agreed to the harm they caused.
2. You are just harboring unforgiveness.
3. I'm human stop judging me.
4. Find the benefit in the harm.
5. You are playing the victim.
6. There are no victims & no villains.
7. You need to let it go.
8. My intentions were good
There are more things that people say to minimize the harm they cause so this list can go on & on. At this juncture I would like to make a Disclaimer.
There is truth in the words above however when you do not own how you have harmed another person & say these things to them you are bypassing their pain & your responsibility in that pain. I do not promote a victim mentality because it does nothing but harm us in the end. Yes we were once a victim & what we do to step out of that role is solely our responsibility, no matter if we were forced into it or not. If someone has owned the harm they caused & you still cannot release it then there is work to be done to properly process your pain. Then you can move forward without holding yourself in the prison of unforgiveness, when you are ready.
Finding Your True North
It is up to you to take whatever steps necessary to heal. I believe in cultivating healthy guidance systems that are not driven by fear, codependency, & the belief that religious leaders are a kin to God & therefore should not be questioned. If we choose not to heal we will reap the results of that. Your voice is infinitely valuable to the expression of who you really are. Without it, you will constantly look to others to make you feel OK in the world. Trust me, that is a helluva road to walk & very dis-empowering. So I ask this question, Where is your compass pointing you? Is it leading you in the direction of your true north or down the rabbit hole of codependency & pleasing others? Only you know the truth of who you are. It takes some uncovering after having to hide it to survive but it's there & it requires your cultivation of it. It takes an effort on your part & a willingness to keep going when nothing looks the way you think it should.
Grounded Spirituality by Jeff Brown was on of the best books I've read that helped me understand what I was feeling inside when it comes to this topic. I have struggled with unforgiveness because it was a protective boundary for me. I have a habit of forgiving prematurely without processing the hurt, fear, anger, & frustration that is a very large part of being betrayed. Jeff gave a very balanced perspective of those teachers who abuse their authority & then bypass that hurt with the aforementioned statements or something close to them. I encourage you all to read it as it will help you to step away from feeling guilty for holding your leaders & yourselves accountable.
You will often hear me say that at the end of the day it is your choice to embrace anything that I offer to help you heal. Suffering is usually a catalyst for us to make lasting change in our lives & my main goal in writing is to help alleviate your suffering. The power to choose for yourself is very important. I will not take that choice away from you. Keep in mind that this is your process & you have to deal with your lived experience no matter how much people try to tell you how to do it. Choose what is beneficial for you & your healing & leave the rest. I wish you the best on your journey & I'm here to assist in any way that I can.