What is the Right Path to Enlightenment?
What is the right path to self-awareness, and then the five hops, two skips and one jump to connect you to the creator that lives within all of us. Hard to tell, because when you are standing at the starting point, there are a myriad of paths that lie ahead, a maze really. There is Yoga, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Taoism, Vendetta, and well the list is almost never-ending.
Then there is the kaleidoscope of destinations, Shiva, God, Allah, Yahweh, Universe and well that list goes on as well. Which then is the right way and which is the wrong way?
The challenge with the world we live in today, is not that there are a multitude of paths, it is that we have become attached to those paths. Off course there are many routes. The Universe is an intelligent mind filled with millions of frequencies. Therefore, when religion and disciplines came down through various saints, gurus, and humans, the level they connected to was dependent on the frequency they were on. This in turn was influenced by the paths, rituals, and customs those beings had taken to reach enlightenment. Which in turn were influenced by the language they spoke, the region they lived in, and the customs and traditions that prevailed in their lives.
Over time as religions and disciplines grew, we came to believe or were taught that it was the tools and paths that took us to destination enlightenment, rather than the journey they took us on. It is at this junction that we began to fragment not only from our own species but from all living species.
It is not religion and practises that divide humanity, it is our attachment to it that does so.
Personally, I have connected much of my journey to the path of Yoga. After having grown up Hindu, and entered relationships with various other religions, I have found that Yoga offers me a path to connect to the universal consciousness that lives in me. Each tool is practical, accessible, and explained spiritually and scientifically. It does not ask me to bow down to any god, as if I am somehow inferior and unworthy. Rather it asks me to humbly bow to the universal consciousness within me. God, consciousness, the ALL, exists everywhere, including in me. I am everything and everything is me.
However, I am not attached to my path, for there are many, each offering a different frequency, a unique experience. Each makes me aware that in the end, the destination is the same. The other path I meander on is Shamanism, through my deep connection to all the five elements in their pure form but also in their manifestations as animals, plants etc. Every day, I greet the ocean with a swim, bow to the earth by walking bare feet on it, acknowledge space by feeling it, and embrace the wind as it cleanses me. Knowing that all those elements are me, and in connecting to them, I hear the universe. As every single aspect of this universe is beholden to those five elements.
I have found that in places where the connection to the elements has disappeared under concrete, rituals have arisen to keep that connection. As all the elements have the power to cleanse us of ignorance and negativity and move us to a state of a purer connection. The connectors I speak of are for example baptisms to connect to water, mantras, songs, and prayers to move air, fire rituals to connect to fire, food sacraments to connect to earth, and silence and meditation to connect to the Akash, space. The space that is just consciousness.
There are other paths I wander as well; from Hinduism, I connect to mantras and their vibrational power to connect. From Christianity, I pray for humanity and every time I practise a sun salutation, I feel a little connected to Islam and their ritual of prayer. Every tool, ritual, and custom connects me in a separate way, but each offers me the same sense of bliss and peace within me. Each takes me deeper into myself, creating a self-love, that then manifests in selfless love to others.
Unlike the dominant narrative that is filling social media and religions, God does not come to me in a human form, it comes as elements. In my deepest meditation, there is light, the oceans and all the elements merge into one with me. But according to many out there, that is not what the destination looks like. Were I to follow the dominant narrative in the social media world right now, I would be led to believe that I have somehow become lost in the woods, and that I should follow a human manifestation of God out into the light.
We have become so obsessed with the destination that we have forgotten the power and beauty of the journey.
This is the beauty of a United Consciousness. It understands that the consciousness that pervades the Universe and the creative force that rises from it in this Universe, known by its various names of God, Shiva, Allah etc. are all manifestations of consciousness. It seeks to create a quilt showing that every path in the world may have distinct colours and patterns, but the fabric is all the same, and they are all one in their destination. Understanding that the destination will look different for different people depending on how they are connecting, but the essence of that connection will be the same.
That essence is a realization that we are all birthed from the same space. An essence manifested as awareness, love, light and the deep understanding that this life we are embroiled in is merely a school for us to learn and evolve ourselves. To experience this world, but not to attach to it. For to attach to it, would be akin to a magician attaching to the illusion of his magic.
What every path asks of us is to know that there is something larger than all of us and we are merely actors playing out the creativity of God and the meditation of the Universe. But don’t take my word for it or anyone else's, find a path or several, practise the tools it offers, enact the knowledge, and see for yourself.
You may find that it takes a couple of walkabouts to find your path. However, understand you are not the tools, the path, the religion, or the discipline. Know that some tools may work for you and others may not, and that is okay. What is important is that you are connecting to consciousness that is you. Ask the questions. Understand your human form, your biology, your energy and why you are engaging in the rituals that you are.
I find that to be the beauty of yoga, it explains all the steps from the level of science. It explains exactly what is happening in your body every step of the way. It is not asking you to have faith, it is asking you to take the journey and see it for yourself in this life.
Humans take a path but don’t become the path. Be inclusive of all humans and living beings. They are a part of you, connected by a consciousness that pervades everything. Everything and everyone appear separate from you because their forms are different and because your conditioned mind says so.
Just because someone is on a different path or appears different to you, it does not mean they are not connected to you. Stop focusing on the external forms, rituals etc., that divide you from everything, but rather on all that connects you to everything. If you use a two-headed hammer and your companion uses a single-headed hammer to build that same house is that a reason not to love them? The tool is different, but the human behind it and the destination are the same.
There is not your god or my god, your Universe, or my Universe. There is just one and any path that asks you to exclude another in the name of God, of enlightenment, of reaching heaven is a product created by humans, not God or the all-prevailing universe. All humans filter what comes through them, based on the limited instruments we are given in this form. As well as the limitations of words and speech.
Humans, bring yourself back into alignment with the universe, do this by connecting to it from within. It is not whom you love, what rituals you do, or what God you pray to that creates that connection. That connection is a personal one, that can only be taken by you because you are the connection.
When you understand that, you will be free to love everyone, from the human down to the butterfly. No matter the colour of it, the path it is on, or its form, you will realise those differences are an illusion created by the mind. When that happens, well then you will begin to experience the magic and power that lives within you.
Imagine what a magnificent world we could live in, if we all stepped into the knowledge that lives within each one of us. If every action, word, and behaviour that ever rose from us, rose from the foundation of love and connectivity, in alignment with the entire universe. What a wonderful world it would be.