The good news is that we are all already Enlightened, all perfect in every way – perfectly happy, perfectly healthy and all our desires are instantly fulfilled. Unfortunately, the bad news is that we’ve forgotten it and so live these less than perfect lives, where we get sick, depressed and frustrated by unfulfilled desires. Our spiritual journey to Higher States of Consciousness, isn’t about learning anything new, it’s about remembering what’s already here, remembering who we really are.
Everything in the Universe has awareness. We can choose to live in constricted, limited awareness or in totally expanded awareness. The only difference between the average person and an enlightened sage is awareness. Most of us live in self-imposed limitations, whereas the sage lives in the unbounded freedom of fully expanded awareness. We say, “I’ll believe it when I see it”, the sage believes it and it manifests.
The Vedas describe four different time periods or Yugas called Sat, Treta, Dwapara and Kali, each lasting for many thousands of years.
Sat Yuga is the Golden or Enlightened Age. A time of joy and peace, a time without crime or violence, sickness or suffering. People had yogic powers and lived in higher consciousness, a state of Oneness.
Over time, people allowed themselves to become tired and stressed, they became distracted and allowed the purity to slip away. This led to the beginning of moral decay, dualism and the time of Treta Yuga where only half the people lived in higher consciousness.
As the ego awakened, trickery and fraud emerged, the true purpose of life became lost. The world entered Dwapara Yuga where very few remembered higher consciousness.
The collective consciousness continued its decline and the world entered a time of chaos and confusion. Thinking became turned upside down, conflict and suffering became accepted as the norm. Materialism dominated and the world descended into Kali Yuga. This is where we find ourselves today, where only a few shining lights live in higher consciousness.
This obviously could be a very depressing story unless we remember that, at the Cosmic level, time doesn’t exist. Sat Yuga never really ended, except in our minds, as a result of being distracted and seduced by the external world. By simply turning our awareness inwards, away from distractions, we can, once again locate the field of Pure Awareness within and begin to restore the memory of Wholeness in our lives. This is the journey of meditation, from chaos and confusion to peace and harmony. A journey from ordinary consciousness to Higher Consciousness and its re-integration as our everyday reality.
When God created the Universe, She wondered where to place the Essence of Life, the Light of Awareness. Some angels suggested hiding it in the distant stars, others suggested the deepest oceans. But God said, “We’ll place it deep in the hearts of every human being, only the wisest of seekers and the true lovers of life will think of looking for it there”.
This Light has and will, always be with us, hidden deep within. All we need do is turn our awareness inwards, away from the noise and into the Silence. This Light is the Light of our Soul and, when we nourish it, it will grow brighter. It will illumine our journey out of the darkness of Kali Yuga, back to the sunshine of Sat Yuga and Higher Consciousness. As the poet Rumi said, “Why do you stay in prison, when the door is wide open?”
The Vedic texts describe seven states of consciousness. Each of them has its own biology, emotions, and the way in which we experience the world. We are all familiar with the first three. These are the states we experience every day – the waking, dreaming and deep sleep states of consciousness. Collectively, we have accepted these as our “normal” states of consciousness but, as we will see, so much more awaits us.
We all have thoughts and one thought leads us to the next. However, between any two thoughts, there is a space or what Deepak likes to call the “gap”. If this wasn’t there, all our thoughts would be happening at the same time. This gap also has two very important qualities – it’s silent and a field of infinite possibilities. If it wasn’t silent, it would be the next thought and between any two thoughts is the possibility for any other thought. However, we are not our thoughts, we are the one who thinks them so, the only place where the “thinker of the thoughts”, our Essential Self or our Enlightened Self can be, is also in the gap between thoughts.
All the creativity, insight and inspiration, joy and peace in our lives comes from this gap. Unfortunately, because of the chaos and confusion that surrounds our lives, we have almost squeezed the gap out of existence. The key to regaining Higher States of Consciousness therefore, is to slow everything down so we can spend more time in the silence of the gap and less in the noise, so we can enjoy its blessing every day in our lives.
The simplest way to spend more time in the gap is through meditation and particularly mantra meditation such as Primordial Sound Meditation. Mantra meditation is a systematic process to take our awareness from activity to the field of Silence and Infinite Possibilities. Our awareness moves to subtler and subtler levels of thought until we slip beyond (transcend) thought and into the gap between them. This can also be called Soul Consciousness, where we aren’t aware of anything in particular but everything in general. A state of Pure Awareness or Pure Consciousness. A non-local state of Being, which we can call a fourth state of consciousness. Awareness becomes aware of itself, intentions come from Being not from ego. This is your true birth place, your country of origin from where you temporarily travel to the waking, dreaming and deep sleep states.
By regularly alternating between meditation and normal activity, Transcendental Consciousness begins to be established within Waking, Dreaming and Deep Sleep Consciousness. The non-local field of Silence and Infinite Possibilities becomes available in the midst of your everyday localized experiences. Higher States of Consciousness begin to unfold.
Now a fifth state of consciousness dawns, where we experience the local and non-local at the same time. The silent, unbounded, unlimited Self witnessing the small, limited self, performing its activities of waking, dreaming and deep sleep. Past, present and future are experienced as the Eternal Now. You realize that you are not the mind and body you are the role-player in the
multitude of roles you play. Now you can fully enjoy the roles without being overshadowed by the good or bad scenes. The mind is fully awake. The fear of death disappears as you realize that death happens to an experience, not to You. You experience the Divinity within yourself.
As we continue our spiritual journey, our awareness continues to expand. The non-local value you recognized in yourself, is now seen in everyone and everything else. You recognize that you live in a celestial world filled with the Divine. You begin to see everything at its most refined level. The heart fully expands bringing a state of deep unconditional love.
Finally, we reach the end of our journey. Separation dissolves and everything is seen as an expression of one’s own Self. You still function in the localized world but recognize that you also have a universal body. Everything is your Self in different disguises. The whole Universe is your body, your projection. You are in the world but not of the world.
In Cosmic Consciousness we experience miracles, in Divine Consciousness we create miracles and Unity Consciousness everything is the miraculous.
Higher Consciousness is with us right now, we can have glimpses of it at any time. It’s in the spaces between thoughts, the spaces between breath and the spaces between objects. Slow down, take time out from the events and objects and become aware of the spaces. One day, the glory of Enlightenment will fully dawn in your life.