What is the nature of enlightenment?
Enlightenment is very radical. It blows away our understanding, and the reason for this is that we realise that life is impersonal. The realisation is that there is no “personal doership”. The great Indian sage Ramana Maharshi explained it this way,
“What is supposed to happen will happen, like it or not. What is not supposed to happen will not happen, like it or not.”
There is no “I”, so there is no question of free will or no free will – a question that Western Philosophy has been so occupied with! The Indian understanding and realisation is that the “ego-me” just exists in the mind – in thinking and nowhere else. It is a creation of thinking. When we really understand this, it is totally mind blowing.
So what is there, when the ego does not decide? When we live identified with the ego-mind, we know only three dimensions: awakened state, dream state and deep sleep state, and these three states appear in time and space. All of them are unreal, which means that none of them have a real unique individual nature! But there is a “fourth state”, in Sanskrit called Turiya, which just means “The Fourth”. We are essentially this state, but we appear as the three other dimensions in time and space.
If you can have a glimpse of what I am trying to say, you will know that in reality you are not in this joke of life – you are not the three dimensions. The real you creates the three dimensions, and then you believe you are them. This is how the whole world lives. Very few wake up to the truth of who they really are and stop identifying with how they appear in the other three dimensions.
Ignorance is like the spider, which after it has created its web, gets imprisoned in it.
But who are we if we are not the person? We can say that this apparent life – in Sanskrit Maya – is God’s dream and you are one with the Divine! In the words of Christ: “Me and my God are one”. But this must be realised!