By Gary Ferguson
What does it really mean to wake up? Is it fair to say that one’s awakening is a journey from the world of what you know, to the world of you don’t know, and never will? Ones awakenings come and go in direct proportion to their willingness to let go of what was and embrace what is in every moment. There is no awakened state as a final destination to arrive at, only the journey. No matter how long or challenging this journey takes it far exceeds any bumps and bruises along the way. The end result of full awakening is freedom from personal suffering, clarity of mind, boundless joy, inner peace and the ability to live an incredibly fulfilling life. The awakened state of being holds everything we have ever desired and so much more. Where are you? What comes next?
There are five stages of awakening and when you understand each stage and where you are on your journey you can recognize the signposts along the way and the possible, the pitfalls to avoid. Please use the following guide as your way to navigate these stages of awakening while keeping in mind that everyone’s experience is different. There is no right or wrong way to wake up. Just like art – it is all beautiful and perfect through the eyes of the beholder.
During this stage the false self subtle awareness of something more begins to grow. In Stage 1 of Awakening, we are mostly asleep and we do not even know that we are asleep. We are entrenched in mass consciousness and going through the motions of life generally following the rules of culture and the laws of the land. We don’t usually question our reality or seek answers beyond what is necessary for survival and maintenance of a lifestyle. Our identities define us and we live within the construct of religion, culture and/or society. We may even play the part of victim or perpetrator while unconscious programming runs us and as a result we see the world in black or white, good or bad and right or wrong. We likely process a rigid model of the world according to our specific programming because there is a great desire to fit in and be accepted in this stage. It is common to sacrifice our needs and compromise our values in order to receive approval and be included in our desired community; be that of family, culture, business, religion etc.
Self-worth is likely conditional and attached to our identity and the roles we play. While there may be other means of proving that we are worthy, the ego generally runs the show. We likely believe we are the ego with little or no awareness that there is a greater part within us. During stage one, our happiness is based on externals therefore in order to feel happy we’re trying to control our reality by controlling other people, places and things. We attempt to control our lives for both happiness and security and it is more than likely that our emotions rule our actions. Our reactions are based on our moment-to-moment feelings and we make no connection between our thoughts, beliefs and our experiences in our construct of reality. That being said, we have no direct ability to consciously create our reality despite our unconscious nature. The first signs of awakening happened during this stage a flash feeling that there is something more or an inkling of doubt that makes us uncertain about life or reality. What’s Next? Take 5 minutes now to reflect on what your present to.