Most human beings are mentally ill, it’s a precursor to having a mind. The trouble is, most people are so content with their dis-contentedness, they don’t even know they are ill. This is denial and/or ignorance.
Those of us who have come to that realisation then embark upon a journey of growth, which may or may not result in some form of spiritual awakening. Suffering is a precursor to enlightenment. How can one return home, unless we have first experienced exile?
Speaking from my own personal experience, and I know a thing or two about mental illness, I know that I used addiction as a form of escapism in order to cope with the terror that was the reality of my mind. It took me a long time to understand this concept.
I’ve been told on more than one occasion that I will be ill for the rest of my life, that the disease of addiction is something that I will just have to accept as an affliction for the rest of my life.
I do not agree with this viewpoint. I see this as weakness. As an unwillingness to grow beyond the confines of the known.
When asked what enlightenment was, the Buddha said simply “it is the end of suffering”.
Because I AM aware of this human experience, I chose to seek enlightenment, rather than remain a captive of my own mind for the rest of my life. I used my OCD mind against itself. I set it a task that was to ultimately free my consciousness from mental bondage. It worked and my suffering ended.
I then wasn’t sure what I was supposed to do with my enlightenment, so I started thinking about this problem… my enlightenment ended. Thinking is the problem.
I haven’t yet returned to state of persistent enlightenment, but I know what it is and I know what to do with it. I cannot tell you what enlightenment is. You will simply have to experience it for yourself, but what I can tell you is that if you embrace your suffering and study it with the kind of dedication and curiosity that you pursued your addictive/destructive behaviours, you stand a very good chance of passing through the gate.
Some wisdom that came to me today is this:
A good choice is its own reward.
We always have a choice, but the mind will often delude us into believing that we are powerless to act or that we are not ready for change or that we do not deserve peace.
This is of course utter nonsense.
Wisdom is the realisation of that choice. The choice is to choose NOW and to give ourselves the gift of Being Present.
Serenity is the acceptance of the consequences of the choice. Sometimes we must do what other perceive as the ‘wrong thing’, but as long as we do that thing for the right reason and from a source of peace, love and compassion, the consequences will ultimately bare fruit.
It’s why Jesus said “The truth shall make you free”. A lie perpetuates the madness that is the condition of mind and stops our consciousness from breaking free and discovering itself. When there are no more lies within us, we become free because we are no longer in conflict and therefore able to meet our true self. This is enlightenment. This is the end of suffering.
So if someone tells you that you will be ill for the rest of your life, believe me when I say, the end of suffering is humanly possible, therefore why would you chose to not end suffering?
It may not be easy and it may be very painful and frightening for you, but if you have known great despair then you can also know great joy. Do no look for joy, instead surrender to what you think and simply accept what is. In that moment, in between thought, you will witness a silence and a stillness that may feel very alien to you. This is Being Present without thought and is the gateway to everlasting peace. This feeling may feel very frightening, as if reality itself is caving in on you. Simply breath and say to yourself:
In this moment I AM calm
In this moment I AM peaceful
If you surrender to this mantra and continue to repeat it, you will instinctively manifest calm and peace. It is impossible not to, as you attention and intention will determine your reality. Do not think, just focus on what you are witnessing.
Once you know peace, you will know yourself and from that stillness will blossom the deepest joy and most fulfilling contentedness. It will be unimaginable, because the mind cannot image such things, but once it witnesses such things, it too will come to understand such things.
It’s taken me many years, as this is a journey I’ve been on my entire life, but then so have you. It’s only when I realised what I had been waiting for, that I stopped for long enough to understand that tomorrow never comes and this moment is eternal.
My realisation began with:
I know nothing. I now know something.
Try it for yourself.