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Lesson 363 - Liberation of the One is Liberation of the Whole  (Audio)

From: Yogani
Date: September 28, 2009

New Visitors: It is recommended you read from the beginning of the archive, as previous lessons are prerequisite to this one. The first lesson is, "Why This Discussion?"


Q: I have been practicing for some time. While things have gradually been getting better in my life, I am concerned with the matter of my enlightenment. No one has been able to tell me when I will be enlightened, or what it will be like. Can you?

A: If things have been getting better, all you have to do is extrapolate that to infinity. That is a loaded answer, of course, because nothing can be extrapolated to infinity. But life does keep getting better, and that is something we can enjoy today, tomorrow and the next day. If we look much beyond that, and invest ourselves in that, we will be working against our enlightenment, because enlightenment does not exist in the future. It can only exist right now, not as an idea, but as an experience. So the "when" is right now. Yet, there is a process, as we have been discussing for these many lessons. But the process is not one that relies on expectations. It relies on our earnest intention (bhakti), engaging in effective practices each day, and going out and living fully.

It is possible to describe the "what" of enlightenment. Life is getting better. That is the most important part of what it is. We go from inner silence to ecstatic conductivity, and then to the merging of these in an outpouring of divine love and unity. See Lesson 35 for our first discussion of it a few years ago. It has been visited many times since.

What do we mean by "an outpouring of divine love and unity." It simply means our sphere of interest expands to encompass more than our body/mind. It is a flow of compassion and expanding Oneness. On the practical level, it means doing for others, who we come to regard as an expression of our Self. So, while the what of enlightenment can be labeled as abiding inner silence, ecstatic conductivity, etc., the reality of it in daily life becomes about helping everyone else.

Going back to that infinite extrapolation of things becoming better in the present, it is about things becoming better for everyone. And this is infinite, because the incarnation of consciousness in materiality is infinite. So our enlightenment is tied to the enlightenment of everyone. Liberation of the One is liberation of the whole.

At the same time, our experience of this becomes non-individual, because we are releasing our identification with the body/mind. We are also releasing our identification with everyone else. We care deeply and act accordingly, even as we become released from attachment. So enlightenment is knowing we do not know anything at all, except that we are that which has no name eternal stillness and uncaused happiness. We become the flow of divine love, and all is found to be moving within us. This is liberation in progress, occurring on the cosmic scale.

But not to dramatize too much. Anticipation is not the way. Practices and keeping busy are the way. Then the marriage between the known and the unknown is facilitated, and we are along for the divine ride of self-realization. As was written years ago here, "Getting enlightenment is giving it away." See Lesson 120.

The guru is in you.

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Note: For detailed discussion on the role of service naturally arising on our path to enlightenment, see the Bhakti and Karma Yoga book and the Liberation book, and AYP Plus.

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