It is certainly not easy to consciously be on a path of awakening. Our lives are so filled with activities, distractions and people that lead us away from our centre and our serenity. It takes a real commitment to reserve time to go inside and shut the world out regularly. It is not easy to have a normal Western life and not being dragged by the materialistic, entertainment and stressful wave. Being in the world and not of this world.
In my case, it has helped the choices I have been taken in the last twelve years, starting with giving up my comfortable bourgeois life in Paris, be willing to start from scratch, lead a simple life for many years and accept complete uncertainty as a companion.
Let’s get real, it does take a lot of relinquishment to get close to enlightenment. It takes a lot of changes in the outer world to leave time and energy to cultivate the path of awakening. You need to have enough space for the search, the preparation, the training.
In my experience, you do not need to become a Buddhist and go through 3-year silent retreats, or follow a guru in India, or completely give up your life in society. But it does take serious adjustments, changes in your material life and difficult choices to take. And this cannot be sugarcoated. How many people are willing to do that? Voilà, that is why there are so very few enlightened people in our society. Because Samsara is very sticky, and it is easy to get stuck on its mirages life after life.
It takes great commitment to an inner path, not only not commonly accepted but often despised and shun. It means solitude. It entails walking off the beaten track. You often feel you do not belong anywhere. You may even feel a weirdo, a member of a rare species that does not share the same values or interests of the vast majority.
Sometimes this will take a toll on you. You need to learn to live with it and hold on there. The path is long but there is light at the end of the tunnel. And the Light is so powerful, so joyful and so peaceful that is worthy of all the sacrifices.
As a matter of fact, all those seeming sacrifices are just the way of getting rid of all your useless and heavy armors accumulated over time, of all your burdens that did not allow you to fly high, of all the tethers that bound you to the soil and kept you crawling.
Do not despair, it is all worthy. And it is our final destination anyway. We can use our free will to choose how fast we get there, but all of us will end up Home.
“When we quit thinking primarily about ourselves and our own self-preservation, we undergo a truly heroic transformation of consciousness.” Joseph Campbell.
**If you want to find out more, I can recommend you to watch the film Samadhi. It is beautiful, profound and inspiring.
You can also check the next entry to my blog. It will come out very soon.