A Series of Realizations
Each spiritual essence is unique. The path to enlightenment for such a unique essence is inherently solitary; it is a lonely path. Try as the Divine might do to inspire many to lead an enlightened life, it is still a choice of the few and faithful. Enlightenment is not a destination; we can search every corner of the world and still not find it. It can only be described as a series of realizations from which doubts and remnants of doubts are erased from our ignorant mind, exposing our pristine mind.
Indulgence in Ignorance
Ignorance is still king; notwithstanding that mankind has advanced by leaps and bounds in the last few centuries. It is true that living conditions have improved tremendously, and choices are aplenty, but at what cost? Advances without morality and wisdom eventually give rise to greed and excess. In a world bent on becoming more prosperous, there are more people today who feel lost, insecure, frustrated, confused, and fear for their future; to the point where they cling on desperately to the values they have, unaware of the damage they are inflicting on their karma and their disconnectedness with the Divine. If the grasping continues to manifest in every aspect of our life, then the Divine will not be able to bestow divinity upon us. No amount of grasping will prolong our life; celebrated or otherwise. Neither will it lead us to our enlightenment. Only a spirit free from grasping will eventually find enlightenment.
The teachings of the Divine are simple; it is the grasping that confuses and complicates. Our relentless pursuits driven by our personal desires give rise to conflicts and contradictions within us. Unless we learn to rein in on wanting more, we will find that indulgence has no part to play in our enlightenment - regardless of our blessings in life. To seek enlightenment must be the primary purpose of our life.
The Catalyst for Enlightenment
Grasping fuels our feelings and emotions. The sensation of having something (e.g., power, status, security, safety, house, car, clothes, jewelry, belongings, etc) or someone to call our own (e.g., spouse, son, daughter, grandchildren, friends, subordinates, servants, pets, etc) is a powerful gratification that causes feelings and emotions to arise and take root within our psyche. Karma is set in motion when the conditions are ripe for the expression (or the non-expression) of these feelings and emotions through the biological (physical) body. Karma begets karma; the incisive effects of action or inaction. Every action (inaction) or expression (non-expression) unwittingly causes sensations, feelings, and emotions to arise in the person we are interacting with. In this context, we are one with all others; interlinked by the actions (inactions) or expressions that originate from the feelings and emotions that our spiritual body (spirit) carried forward from lives past and made complicated by our present grasping. The process continues till the day we are awakened from this dreamlike state called reality.
Life is transient; everything else associated with life is therefore transient. Time does not begin at birth (or rebirth) nor does it end at the point of death; anything else associated with time is therefore of no relevance to life and death. Most of us view our life as only the present one. The Divine knows our “life” as the present one that is a consequence of our grasping in previous lives. It is important therefore to re-align our viewpoint to this so that we can begin to see the perspective of the Divine. If we understood the purpose of the realignment, we will also realize that life and time - the two pillars that we measure our passage in this mortal world - are of no significance to the Divine. They are mere tools to lead us towards enlightenment. A new birth heralds a new life. More importantly to the Divine, a new life is bestowed a new opportunity to align one’s perspective to the Divine or to rekindle a lost relationship, or simply to right a wrong done in a previous life. If only we see our life as filled with opportunities to neutralize all our sensations, feelings and emotions (past and present), then this life will become the catalyst for enlightenment; if not, the catalyst for a chain of events leading to a series of realizations that culminate in enlightenment. It is not enough to just count our blessings. It is just as important to be aware that each moment that we experience life now, is an opportunity for us to be awakened. To see through the veil of reality, to escape from samsara, and to emerge an enlightened being.