The phrase “spiritual enlightenment” is a common one on our journey to find happiness, value, and inner peace. Spiritual enlightenment is a conscious state of inner quietness and a deep connection to the universe. The gap that divides you from the universe dissolves and your presence is fully united to it. This is what makes meditation, prayer, and quiet times of solitude so crucial to the spirit’s advancement and growth.
Many different layers of awareness are involved in spiritual enlightenment. Some people are simply born spiritually enlightened and remain so for their whole lives. This is rare, but not impossible. Some such people are considered sages on some spiritual level. Spiritual enlightenment can also come about due to a catalyst of events.
Profound spiritual transformation isn’t necessarily guaranteed to painful, but it will involve a great deal of pain for some people. Significant trauma, such as the death of a loved one or the diagnosis of a terminal illness, may act as a catalyst and accelerate the enlightenment process. Some people experience the appearance of other enlightened and more advanced souls in their lives to assist their enlightening to a higher level.
We Are Spiritual Beings
For enlightenment to occur, we must be aware of the fact that we all are spiritual beings having human experiences, not just human beings experiencing spiritual moments. Many varied definitions attempt to explain spiritual enlightenment, but the experiences are so diverse—from the spark of a tiny “a-ha!” moment of valuing and loving others and self, to the overwhelmingly divine and sacred life experiences—that it’s difficult to encapsulate.
Spiritual enlightenment begins the moment we accept accountability for our journey in life. It may be assisted along the way by angelic beings, spiritual guides, and our own higher selves. Most people remain spiritually indifferent, meaning they’re unaware that all things in the world and every intelligent being is connected to them. When people are spiritually indifferent, their awareness of the connections all around them deteriorates to a point where they feel irreconcilably separated from everything and everybody else. Daily news reports detail the resulting hatred, violence, blame, and greed.
The Opposite of Enlightenment
Spiritual indifference is an active state of addiction. It involves avoiding necessary changes, deliberate self-isolation, a willingness to do or consume anything to help avoid pain and discomfort, and self-destructive behavior patterns. All of these things distract people from spiritual reality.
The 1995 fantasy drama film Powder told the story of a young man who was albino because his mother was struck by lightning while pregnant with him. He was raised in isolation because people felt uncomfortable when they looked at him and when they saw his paranormal abilities.
One scene from the movie shows what spiritual enlightenment can look like. A cold-hearted deputy shoots a deer, and the young man touches the deer and the deputy’s hand so the deputy feels all the terror, grief, and fear the deer feels as it dies.
The deputy lost his brutal energy and he never picked up a gun or harmed another living thing again. But he wasn’t pleased with the transformation. His life fell apart because his beliefs about separation were so abruptly eliminated. It’s difficult to release our ego’s interpretation of humanity.
Spiritual enlightenment shifts the emphasis from yourself to a reality that’s free from shape and form. You become alert to the ebb and flow of life all around you and recognize that it’s a continual motion of interconnected energy and events.
Humans are beings with multiple levels, so our physical beings are just a small component of who we wholly are. It’s rare for a person to go through life without experiencing at least one significant moment when everything is right in their realm of existence. That’s what being connected to the flow is all about.
Most people’s reality exists in the mindset of “me, myself and I…oh, yeah, and I guess them, too.” But earth’s energy will not allow us to remain indifferent. We’re becoming enlightened! It’s challenging for most at the very least, and scary for some, but it’s worth it! Here are three signs of spiritual enlightening, and the actions you can take to advance it
- You feel emotionally connected to everything and everyone around you, whether in joy, anger, or a desire for change. If you feel emotionally detached from other people’s misfortunes because you think they don’t have anything to do with you, you’re spiritually indifferent. If you sense and relate to other people’s joy, pain, or situation in life, you’re becoming spiritually enlightened. Help those you can, and pray for the rest. Always strive for a positive outcome.
- You strongly desire a spiritual pursuit in whichever form possible. This mystical experience is often referred to as “the rapture.” Recognizing your connection to everything and everyone around you forms the base understanding of that desire. Feed your desire by reading books, listening to podcasts, joining groups, following blogs, and finding shamans who can discern and traverse spiritual paths with you.
- You regain the sense that you’ve always been connected as one with the universe. This can help you recognize how your mistreating others is the same as mistreating yourself—in other words, “do to others what you would have them do to you.”
Asking questions such as “What should I do now that I’m enlightened?” is the most significant and tangible evidence of an enlightened spirit. It proves your desire to take action in light of your new way of seeing yourself and the universe. So, don’t hesitate to take action on your new energy of spiritual enlightenment. Serve and help others, remove negative energy from your life, do yoga, meditate, pursue a healthier lifestyle, read, listen to calming music, or get out in nature more often. Your spiritual growth will be evident in your life when you put your new awareness into action.