I am amazed and frustrated that often people who have heard about the possibility of enlightenment aren’t all that keen on going for it. All I can think is, “they must not understand.” From the bit that I have experienced, turning away from enlightenment is turning away from the opportunity to live totally immersed in love.
But, what do I know?
I have taken the liberty of condensing down the words of Adyashanti as he described what becomes of you when you awaken.
Three qualities arose in me when I experienced a deep awakening: wisdom, innocence, and love. Although they are actually parts of one whole, this wholeness can be expressed by these three qualities.
Awakening opens wisdom. [It] doesn’t mean that I suddenly became smart. It simply means I realized the Truth. This Truth is what I am. This is what the world is. This Truth is not a matter of philosophy, science, faith, belief, or religion. It is beyond all of that- far beyond.
The second quality born within this awakening was innocence. This tremendous innocence produces the feeling of an ever-present newness in life. [The] brain no longer holds and compares, so every moment is experienced as new, just as it would be in the mind of a young child. The adult mind tends to take things in [and] compare its perception to the litany of things… “Been there, done that.” The innocent mind arises when this comparison is no longer happening. This innocence could also be called humility.
The third quality that arose was love. What is born in awakening is a love of what is- of everything that is. The fact that there is anything at all seems wonderful because when the insight of awakening goes very deep, there is a realization about how tenuous existence is. I mean we see an unbelievable miracle and from that seeing there is the birth of so much love simply for what is. This is a love just for the fact that we have shoelaces or for the fact that toenails exist, that kind of love. A tremendous love arises simply for the miracle that is life, realizing that all and everything is the One.
When the awakening is very deep, we no longer operate from a place of personal self. In other words, everything doesn’t relate to “me.” Nobody can really explain what the personal self is; we just feel it. It’s a visceral thing. As we see through it, we realize that the personal self is not who we are. And as we really see into our true nature, there is a paradox that arises: the more we realize that there isn’t a self, the more intimately present we actually are.
So, what took the place of the personal self in my experience was the innocence and the love.
Adyashanti, from Emptiness Dancing