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My Spiritual Awakening was in February, 2012.
As I've shared in the past, it was born from the most painful life-experience I had ever gone through to-date. I'm going to start calling it "The Crucible of Spiritual Awakening"
If you're going through a difficult time, take advantage of it! It can be the very event from which you Awaken into a new life of freedom.
For the next two weeks after Awakening, I experienced no-mind. This is the state where the constant "monkey mind" is silent. You're absorbed in full awareness of only what's going on, right now, in this moment - 100% present.
For about eight months after Awakening I stayed nearly constantly in bliss. My internal state was at full peace, and from that peace a happiness just flowed. It was like having a continual bubbly-happy river running through me.
Well, before that bliss state ended, I entered another difficult period of time. The most painful experience was ongoing, it never let up. But as all things do, eventually it just became the new norm. That, and the profound internal change I was experiencing as a result of Awakening, it was no longer a real test or challenge for me.
About 6 months after Awakening, I entered another trial that lasted for over a year.
I had a day job that was pretty chaotic. There was a lot of in-fighting between different groups in the company, and financially we had a lot of pressure on us. It was like living under the cloud that you may lose your job at any moment and people were at each other's throats.
At the same time, I was busy trying to launch my own company. I had a base of over 3,000 potential customers who were ready to pay and was busy trying to launch a tech platform for them to use.
Starting around the August (the 6th month after Awakening), I was finally transitioning from them being potential customers to actually taking their money and launching the platform.
(lol, you always know there's an "and then" coming when things are going so well)
And then the bank that had pre-approved me to process credit cards started going sideways.
Suddenly I was scrambling to meet additional requirements from the bank, while trying to complete the tech platform and keep all the waiting customers happy.
This was the perfect moment to have a "spiritual checkup" and see how much Awakening had really impacted me.
I'd like to say the bliss experience was non-stop, but it wasn't. There were times where my entire experience was full awareness of all the pressure on me across all these different areas demanding from me.
There were times (hours at a time) where all I could do was sit in silence and observe. My mind wasn't running away with itself (which would have been the case in the past), but it also wasn't coming up with actionable plans either. The best I could do was just bring full embodied mindfulness to the moment and sit in awareness of all the physical sensations and the inability to focus on anything else.
By the way, these pressures never really changed over the next year. I satisfied the banking requirements, collected payments, and launched the platform. But all I was doing was trading one "solved" problem (like the bank) for another (like customer complaints).
But after the full 8 months of bliss had come to an end, I had successfully maintained my inner focus like never before. I felt I fully passed the "spiritual check-up."
So if you feel like things are getting worse, or more difficult, after you've made spiritual advances, just hold on.
Keep what you've gained, and be determined to at least wait out the difficulties without losing any of your ground.
Just this week I was talking with a dear friend going through his own Crucible of Awakening. It feels like everything I experienced, and he's maintaining the right focus as he goes through it.
I offered him this question I would ask myself every day when I went to work with all of these pressures.
As I rode the elevator up to my office, I'd ask myself "How would a person who has this level of spiritual understanding act when they get off this elevator?"
And then I acted that way. I replaced all my old behavior with the new behavior that was straight out of the internal spiritual enlightenment I had already experienced.
When talking with my friend I recommended asking "What would a Master do in this situation?" And then just do that.
We may not feel like a Master, but we replace the non-Master behaviors of the past with behaviors that reflect our deepest revelation. After enough replacement, you become the Master you modeled after.
I encourage you to do the same!
If you're going through your own Spiritual Crucible, use the contact page, or reply to any of my emails, and let me know how it's going.
I'd love to hear from you!
Until then, my friend, be well and enjoy yourself.