What is a ‘spiritual awakening’ and is there confusion around this topic?
In the following short paragraphs, we’ll take a quick look at these questions and more.
What is Spiritual Awakening?
If you close your eyes and take a long, deep breath, and are able to see your future or someone else’s, or even the future of our world, does this mean you’re awakening from your spiritual slumber?
Does having some sort of psychic ability mean you are spiritually awakened? Maybe yes. Maybe no. It depends.
Regardless of whether you believe that psychic visions and capabilities are real or imagined, having this ability, or believing you do, is not necessarily an indication of a spiritually awakened existence.
Being drawn to crystals, incense, or other things sometimes considered spiritual also is not indicative of a ‘spiritual awakening’, nor is a sudden shift in perspective or being drawn to spiritual teachings and wisdom.
So what is a spiritual awakening?
A true spiritual awakening is about desire, intent, and action. Awakening is another term for awareness. When we awaken, we become aware.
Think about the time when you first open your eyes in the morning after a restful night’s sleep. You instantly see something different. Instead of the dream-state you’ve been experiencing for the last few hours, you now see the physical surroundings, the environment where your body has been during that time.
Spiritual awakening is much the same, with one distinct difference.
Rather than being aware of the body and its existence in time and space, with a true spiritual awakening, your focus turns inward. You become genuinely aware of your internal selves, the real you, the spiritual nature that is you.
Misconception 1 – Joy vs Happiness
Most people live their lives moving from one experience to another attempting to artificially create a feeling. For most, the desired feeling is happiness.
Unfortunately, there is a problem with such a pursuit. Many confuse happiness with joy. Joy can be created artificially but it’s temporary. It is true that joy is a feeling of elation — an internal feeling that makes one feel good in a moment — but it usually dissipates quickly. This is not happiness.
Happiness is not created. It is uncovered. and it is unending, unlimited.
Happiness is not generated through experiences. Happiness already exists within. To experience it, layers of other feelings must be peeled away like the layers of an onion. This allows it to express, to come to the surface. These layers often act as a shroud, hiding the actual happiness that’s already there.
Most are reluctant to peel the layers, so they substitute the temporary highs and lows of joy for the unlimited calm and peace of real happiness.
What does this have to do with spiritual awakening? The act of peeling away the layers — of uncovering the happiness already within — is about developing internal awareness. The pursuit of internal awareness is the definition of spirituality so to be ‘awakened’, to see a different reality when eyes are opened, one must be looking within, and not outside of oneself.
Misconception 2 — Distractions
Many talk about awakening. When this talk enhances their process of going within, it is helpful. But when conversation is more about trying to figure out if one has or can develop psychic or other types of powers or abilities sometimes associated with spirituality, it can be more damaging than anything else.
One can be completely spiritually awake and have zero powers or supernatural abilities. Dr. David R. Hawkins in his non-judgmental way called these abilities parlor tricks and gave them no real value.
Spending time and energy looking for those types of things can be a distraction from the real work of spirituality. Anything that takes one away from the dedicated pursuit of inner awareness is a distraction.
The development of inner awareness is spirituality. The awakened person has developed internal awareness.
Our world is filled with distractions. Activities, experiences, relationships, jobs, family and more can all be distractions. This is not a judgment of these things. They are here to be experienced and enjoyed. (Joy is not a bad thing, but it is not happiness.)
But the awakened person is able to properly contextualize these things, keep them in perspective so they do not overtake their lives and distract them from the real work. Learning to go within and acquiring the ability to identify the inner selves is the real work. Everything else can be a distraction, if we’re not aware.
Misconception 3 — The Selected Few
Here’s an idea that some may find alarming: We’re all Spiritual beings.
That’s not really an alarming statement, so who might be upset by that? Those who don’t understand what spirituality is might find this to be an off-putting statement. Some who consider themselves religious, but who are deeply mired in a myopic dogma, look upon those outside their belief system as not worthy.
Therefore, in their belief systems, they are spiritual but everyone else may not be.
When we take a deeper look at ourselves, we find that we are not body’s with a spirit that was created as a result of birth.
All of us, regardless of our beliefs, are spirits who were born into bodies. We are spirits who currently inhabit a body, and the body is only a temporary vehicle used to experience the physical world.
That being said, it is only logical to assume that spirituality and a true spiritual awakening is for everyone, and not just a select few. But it is up to us to choose. We each have free-will and choice. We each get to decide whether we want to experience the physical world and its limitations through our Ego self or aspire to a higher level of consciousness.
Spirituality is for everyone. We’re all spiritual beings by nature but we each have the option to choose how we’d like to experience our lives and the world.
So, are you ‘spiritually awakened’? Or, have you yet to awaken from your deep sleep, from a focus on the physical world and its distractions to learn one more concerned about the essence of your true, spiritual nature?
Everyone can make the choice to awaken. Few actually do. But that’s okay. The choice is yours to make.
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Great post! Agree with all of it. These misconceptions pretty much explain all that we see and experience in a physical sense. The misunderstanding, indoctrination, and confusion. Thank you for sharing.