Zen hotch-potch. Candle-flickering, hippie-chanting, lotus-seated daydreaming. The concept of enlightenment was to me, a Buddhist buzzword that had long left its influence under the Banyan tree and slid off my thick urban dwelling, corporate/social ladder climbing, numb neuron skin that proudly bore the word 'Indifference' tatooed over my third eye.
Like many aspects in my life, I stumbled on my journey to the door, that marks the road, that leads to the gates, that opens to the path to Enlightenment. In short, I arrived at this twinkling of awareness outside my teeny weeny world of existence by taking a 'wrong' turn somewhere upstream. And secondly, my awareness is only just the top of the iceberg. There are such depths to discover before reaching the tip of consciousness.
The funny thing is that epiphanies, for want of a better word, always seem to lurk up on you. It's like falling in love. There is always talk of the earth moving but more than likely, it's a dawning or slow realisation.
For me, being aware of my role in the universe has always been a bit vague. Like many I sat through half awake in science class as the teacher droned on about the earth and the planets and all in between. And the times when there's been nothing on Star World and the voice over in the Discovery Channel narrated about energy matters. All that may have filtered sub- counsciously into my brain but there was never any Realisation on my part. I never once sat up and said "Really? Wow!"
I have never had a light switch on in my heart, the seat of my soul. To truly awaken? No. Not me. That was stuff for others - for the spiritually attuned. Me? I don't even feel hunger - I just eat when the clock tells me to.
So it was a little bit of a surprise when I sat through a presentation by a professor from RMIT last week and everything that he told me and showed me on his powerpoint just made so much sense. I discovered myself nodding as he spoke and excitement grow in my chest as if I had just discovered a new scientific theory that would be named after me. The piece fit in the puzzle, the coin dropped, I heard the click. It all seemed so logical, so simple that I was amazed that I had never made the connections before.
Of course, he went in to so much more. But the crux is this: We are all part of the universe as energy matters floating about. What comes through our body - water, food, thoughts, emotions - come out as energy also - albeit in different forms - whether its waste, neagtive emotion, happy emotion, whatever. When we die, we transform into energy of another sort but we still maintain as part of the universe. Our actions create a cause and effect on our universe - meaning what we do will end up affecting us in turn.
In turn, this leads to a responsibility. A responsibility that what we do, how we feel, and how we live our lives will ultimately affect the balance of the universe. Whether we lead loving lives filled with positivity, or whether we eat meat and fuel the engine of battery farms, whether we meditate and walk around balanced - all aspects of our existence, from the very micro functions of our bodies to the very macro of how we want to live, is a reponsibility. Its a responsibility to our Creator (if you believe in one), to Mother Earth (if you believe in her), to the energies that share this universe with us. Also a responsibility to our Ego, our sense of self.
Just realising that alone blew my mind away. As I said before, it's nothing new- I'm not declaring anything that we all haven't heard at some point or another. But I guess, when you are ready to accept something, the answers will come. So life will continue to take you on its merry go round of ups and downs, and you may live several chapters of your life before things mean something eventually. Whether you're 18 or 80.
And that was when I realised that I had always asked myself these questions, that I had always known certain things. That I am not spiritually inept after all. The blockage lay in the fact that I never listened. Or if I had, I never acknowledged that I knew.
Isn't there some theory that all babies are born knowing? Just that over time, we forget and numb ourselves. Fade out what we know and depend on modernities to do the thinking ad answering for us.
And in a slow dawning, I realised that my spiritutal self, my soul, has always been around and not fast asleep or numbed by alcohol as I had always thought it was.