Enlightenment and the Journey to Wholeness

After meeting Osho in 1973 in Mumbai, I went to his 10-day meditation camp in Mount Abu. The name of the camp was Samadhi Sadhana Shibeer, which he translated as; ‘Camp for Inner Ecstasy and Enlightenment.’ In my innocence, I imagined that this meant I would become enlightened during those 10 days. I threw myself into the meditations he proposed with a frenzy of totality. After all, I came from USA pioneer stock, strong and determined people who had conquered the wild-west! Surely, I could conquer the supreme goal of enlightenment!

35 years and countless meditation, healing experiences, and jokes later, the exquisite portal opened. Invariably people may ask, “So how did it happen and what is the path to it?” Ha ha, there-in lies the mystery!

Myriad Paths to Enlightenment

osho-discourseThere are countless ways to reach enlightenment; as many as there are individuals. The myriad ways people have attained this sublime state are really interesting and are certain to inspire seekers of truth. However, in a sense, it can also be discouraging because there is no one way, one path. Some zealots may claim theirs is the only way, but certainly no enlightened being will ever say such a thing as “My way is the only way.”

Some people may say, “Why would I want to search for enlightenment anyway? What is the point of it?” This is a very valid point, and probably those who feel this way should not try to direct themselves towards enlightenment, but rather direct their energy towards experiencing happiness in everyday life.

What is Enlightenment?

There are many definitions and it also depends on the perspective of the one who disappears into this state. However, there are a few things that can be said:

It is a space where ego evaporates and this person merges with universal consciousness. Buddha calls it Nirvana, which means cessation of self, or blowing out the flame. In Tantra, it is called Mahamudra, which means the great gesture arising out of the ultimate orgasm with the universe. In the Hindu tradition, it is called Samadhi, which essentially means to be awake while in dreamless sleep. It is also referred to as enlightenment because in this moment of transmutation, right and left hemispheres of the brain merge and all the ‘lights’ (communication system) are switched on in the corpus callosum,

mid brain, leading to genius. It is also known as the great death, because the experience mirrors death. In my experience, there is a subtle veiling which separates us from the non-physical dimension. In the moment of Mahamudra, the veil is pierced, and the experiencer leaves life as we know it, shifting dimensional reality. The portal is made of both death and total orgasm in one unified flow. And having said that, it is actually beyond words or concepts.

Feeling called to the Path

The people who are gripped in their vitals to move on the path are probably those people who have already been seekers in a past life and feel a yearning to continue where they left off. For this reason, it is easier for some than for others. It all depends where your soul is already on the pilgrimage. Where you will be drawn to, and how you will choose to work on yourself is very connected to your karmic imprints. And of course, quantum leaps are possible!

Tips for Seekers

Since my life has been devoted to the search for and experience of enlightenment through Tantra, I offer here some tips, which may act as beacons on the path.

In Deep Let Go the Magic Happens

let-go1) After almost superhuman exertion, in meditation and other spiritual disciplines, the seeker finally lets go of all effort. It is through this deep let go that the magic happens. However, from my own experience and having heard of the experience of Osho and other mystics, such as Buddha, Mahavira, Milarepa, Jesus, Saint Theresa of Avila, Hafiz, Gurjieff, Pythagoras, and many more, it is first necessary to search with full totality. Having exhausted every possibility of method, discipline and understanding, finally the searcher collapses and it is then the sought appears. In that perfect moment when you no longer have any desire for any goal the supreme envelops you. One may think, “If that is the case, I will simply let go of all desire now and the jewel will be mine!” However, it does not work that way. Desirelessness only arises after trying everything. This is because incarnation itself is fueled by desire. Enlightenment is the supreme desire and so once we have exhausted that avenue of pursuit, the very ground of being implodes.

Male and Female Methodology

2) If a person is in a male body, the tendency will be to follow the path of meditation and witnessing. By sincerely following this path, it will eventually flower into love and compassion. If a person is in a female body she will have the tendency to follow the path of love and devotion. By bringing her totality to this path, she will eventually flower into meditation and witnessing. However, as we all contain both male and female aspects, it is good for a female to also learn meditation and for a man to also learn love and devotion. Then, when it is the right moment for your flowering, you will slip easily and naturally into your inner nature.

The Value of a Guru

osho3) There are two types of people, those who need a Guru or guide on the path and those who don’t. Osho describes those who do not have any guru and who find the truth on their own, as becoming a ‘Master of Masters’, the beginning point of a lineage. This type of person discovers very early on in their search that life itself is the Guru. They learn the art of listening to the subtle indications life is giving as to how to follow the path to wholeness.

Another type of person relies on one or more guides to find their way. If the Guru is truly enlightened he or she will help the disciple to learn the art of listening to life itself and eventually they will be able to find their way to the ultimate truth through the divine that is embodied in each and every aspect of living.

Letting Go of What is Not Yours

4) The art of remembering is a supreme discovery on the path. This involves letting go of what you are not and in this way discovering your true essence. The true essence of each being is already enlightened. Once someone asked Osho, “You became enlightened at the age of 21. How did you become enlightened at such a young age?” His answer was astonishing. I remember him saying, “I simply asked all the voices that were not mine to go.” He then went on to explain a profoundly effective technique for doing so. (This technique is listed in our Meditation of the month.)

5) The Art and Science of No-mind

is of great importance when travelling the path. There are as many ways of entering no-mind as there are leaves on a tree. It is good to choose one of these methods and practice it as a series for a certain amount of time. Osho used to recommend trying a method for 3 days and if you like it, to continue for 21 days. If you are still getting benefit from it, continue the practice for three months. Once you have extracted the nectar from that method, and you and the method have melted as one, you can let go of that method and choose a new technique. In this way, your journey continues to meander, flowing like a river to the ocean of your essential nature.

Mind is Our Secretary, Not the Boss

download-1A little map is helpful to understand this process. Our mind is basically a bio computer, which is designed to accumulate and store information. It is like a secretary who is designed to be in service to our essential nature, the being. In the right moment the secretary gives you the indication; “Winter is coming and you need to stack wood because it will get cold.” Or the secretary may say: “Remember the time you fell downstairs, and therefore you need to be careful when walking downstairs.”

The problem with mind arises when the secretary goes berserk and begins hurling files on your desk at any time of day or night, reminding you about any manner of things that have no relevance now, or worrying about future events which also have no need of being brought to your attention at this time. The constant mind chatter about inconsequential things brings unnecessary stress to our whole biological system. Therefore, the secretary needs to be trained to be quiet and calm unless it is needed for some relevant purpose. Methods of meditation help us to train the secretary and to tune into and resonate with our true essence, the being. The being is always in the present moment, so anything, which helps us to remain in present moment awareness will help.

A Heart Based Life

The being communicates most effectively through the heart, so techniques, which help us to move from head to heart are very effective. In fact, recently scientists have discovered that the heart is a brain and that it is a superior brain to the brain in the head. The heart brain receives its cues directly from the being and these are then meant to be translated through

heart based reality to the brain in the head. Indigenous people know this very well and many indigenous cultures have a heart-based system of life.

6) Natural Enlightenment is Our Birthright

I have heard Osho speaking on how some indigenous cultures never come out of the enlightened state, meaning they retain their original innocence and wonder throughout their lives. For them, no spiritual sadhana is necessary because they live and breathe in oneness with nature, deepest gratitude and cosmic awareness.

Just the other day I had a marvelous session with a Shaman from a remote indigenous tribe who lives near the border of Nepal ask-saritaand India. He told me that in their tribe, when a child is born, the tribe waits for the auspicious moment when a rainbow appears. The moment the rainbow appears, a ceremony is done for the infant. The ties binding the child to the parents are cut and he or she is given to the rainbow, as its new parent. The child is expected to listen to the rainbow, not to its biological mother and father, for all the cues as to how to be a balanced human being.

When a girl reaches puberty, the same day as her first menstruation, she is placed in a dark room for three days. She is given food and drink, and left alone in the dark. After three days, when she comes out of the room, a marriage ceremony takes place. She is married to a fruit. As fruits and the seeds of fruits are abundant, it is believed that through this marriage, she will never be without love. Abundance and juiciness is her first imprint of marriage. Afterwards, she may be with many lovers, and through the nature of abundance, she will choose those she wishes to live with.

It is interesting to note that in their culture, a woman will routinely marry four men and they all live together as one family. Men may also have more than one wife.

Such sensitivity and wisdom can only come from a heart-based culture where people live deeply in tune with nature.

The Shaman told me that unfortunately the old ways are slowly dying out. I hope someone will have the stamina, skill and vision to go and make a film about this tribe who have such fascinating ways of seeing and experiencing life and love.

7) The Body is A Guru

By listening to the body attentively, we will certainly become tuned to our greatest capacity for harmony and wellbeing. Wholeness happens when body, mind, heart, soul and spirit, all work together as one synchronistic whole. This means, on the spiritual path, we need to give equal attention to the body as to the mind or spirit.

At one time, Ayurveda, Yoga and Tantra were all branches in one tree of life. Intelligent living includes right diet, right exercise, and right patterning of the mind as well as the awakening of our full spirit based potential. There is much thirst in people to come back to the body as a foundation for a balanced life. This is why Yoga has spread all across the world. It is a sane and balanced approach to body mind balance. As we really dive into our potential, finally we will learn to reclaim what the ancients already knew. We will once again become devotees of the tree of life in all its splendor.

One response to “Enlightenment and the Journey to Wholeness”

  1. Michael KJ Lim says:

    Dear Sarita,
    I have read your article about the Enlightenment and the Journey to Wholeness. It is interesting to learn and experience what is really good to achieve the road to the Enlightenment. I do believe there are different paths to the Enlightenment. A very good example like Lord Buddha, after many years of rebirth, finally he came to realize himself and born as a Prince. He realized time had come for him to achieve the Enlightenment(supreme state of happiness)where he broke the cycle of births. As a human being like us, finally he achieved self- realization.
    On the other hand, there are a lot of Divine Swamis who achieved Samadhi like Paramahansa Yogananda, Sai Baba and other Divines. As what Vivikananda emphasised four methods to achieve Samadhi, Janana Yoga, Bhakti Yoga, Raja Yoga and Karma Yoga.
    All in all, different routes eventually will reach the goal.Of course, this nevertheless depends on individual’s beliefs and practice.
    As Sadhguru Vassagi said, ‘Inner Engineering’ is a way for us to understand within ourselves. The Internal Energy within ourselves which is indestructable than the External Energy(i.e our body) which is temporary.
    I am not against any good practises.
    Anyway, thanks for sharing your wonderful messages.May the Light shine on you with Joy and Happiness.

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