I have heard so much about spiritual awakening but I still don't know what it means. I'm a novice, can you help me to understand?
Spiritual awakening is waking up to the truth of your being. Assagioli, the founder of Psychosynthesis said that 95% of our energy is spent defending, protecting and maintaining our self-image -- and it's all an image, imagination! When you ask yourself, "Who am I?" you don't get an answer because there is no one to answer that question. Ordinarily you become confused, dumbfounded or frightened. You are awareness itself and therefore all you are left with when you ask, "who am I?" is just pure awareness and that's it. The mind will want to make something concrete out of that but there's nothing concrete about our true nature because it is not something that comes and goes like matter. It is spirit-consciousness. This spirit-consciousness produces thoughts out of itself and we live from these thoughts (beliefs, ideas, conditioning, imagination and emotions. We make them so real that we identify totally with them. However, we miss something greater that never changes and is both unborn and undying known as pure awareness. It is Presence. It is Being.
Therefore what awakens us from our spiritual sleep is knowing the difference between pure awareness and what you are aware-of. Until we see clearly this great difference we shall remain confused, unclear and have a multitude of questions. We perceive two ways when we read spiritual literature -- we understand either intellectually or emotionally. Both create barriers in our understanding.
Emotional listening is very personal and so we can't see what is deeper than the personal beluiefs and thoughts. Intellectual listening, on the other hand, is literal and listens to the words.
Here's an example of each -- an emotional person would relate everything they hear to themselves where they feel that the whole world revolves around them. They often say, "He must be talking about me when I read him." They are easily hurt, offended and upset at the slightest 'thing' that seems to point to them. The intellectual or literal person take words to mean something separate according to their thinking. Here's an example...
Someone asked me once to explain what ego is and I said, "Ego is resistance. It sees as it conditioned to see them rather than how they actually are. Anger is resistance. Fear is resistance to what-is. Upsetness is resistance to something seen or heard. Depression is resistance to the moment as it is and feel hopeless to control it, and so on. Resistace and control make up the ego. I emphasized to her that ego doesn't really exist at all, it is just resistance.
One day this person wrote me and said that she's caught in her ego and there's nothing she can do about it (of course not!) Resistance resists itself. So, I said to her, "Since you cannot control the ego since ego is control then accept it fully." Some time after she wrote back and said that I contradicted myself by saying -- "accepting an ego that doesn't exist!" Now that's literal thinking (intellectual) and so fails to see what is obvious. In asking her to accept the ego I was really saying, "there is no ego" which is using different words meaning the same thing. However, she took the term literally that acceptance was something for her to do. If she looked deeply into it she would have realized that accepting something that resists, automatically removes the resistance. When the ego's resistance is gone, where's the ego?
Spiritual awakening is usually a slow process because people are divided into two groups ordinarily -- intellectual and emotional. Some are both. When we can see the difference between PURE AWARENESS and what you are AWARE-OF then that's awakening and both the intellectual and emotional take a back-seat and finally see clearly what is actually obvious. In fact, awakening is like waking up from a bad dream and realize it was all a dream. It is seeing what is obvious here and now.