How Do I Know If I’m Enlightened?

How Do I Know If I’m Enlightened? March 28, 2024

Enlightenment EasyPreasyAI

Enlightenment does not mean at some point you ‘arrive’ at and you are there and the race is over and you suddenly become spiritually and intellectually superior to everyone else. I believe life goes on and you will learn more and you will change and adjust and continually be forming into the best version of yourself.

As I offered earlier in my definition of enlightenment I do not believe it is some point you ‘arrive’ at and you are there and the race is over and you suddenly become spiritually and intellectually superior to everyone else. I believe life goes on and you will learn more and you will change and adjust and continually be forming into the best version of yourself if you stay on the path to spiritual learning and enlightenment. I do believe though there is an ‘Ah-Hah’ moment where it suddenly makes sense and you have clarity and understanding like never before. This will be an imperfect example but to me, it is like buying a shiny new knife; this represents that ‘Ah-Hah’ moment. You use the knife day after day and you wonder how you ever did without that knife; this represents the continuing journey where you learn more and more and achieve confidence on a level you never had before. Then the knife gets a little dull; this represents the occasional crossroads and challenges to what you believe will arise. At this point hopefully, you don’t throw the knife away because it doesn’t work as well as it did before. Hopefully, you sharpen it and maybe even hone a better edge on it than the factory where you bought it from; this represents where you dig in spiritually, you meditate, you pray, you read what the masters say. Then you continue using that knife and constantly oil and maintain it and you know what to expect for you have learned and accepted that the knife will get dull but now you know what to do when it does; this represents that part of enlightenment when you accept things as they are and you are at peace. There is a peace that comes from realizing that control is only an illusion and you just let go and let God. As much as possible,  live a life free of worry, casting off illusions, focusing more on yourself being the best version of yourself you can be and not overthinking things.

self righteous
Original by Benjamin Raven Pressley

One thing I have realized as a follower of Christ is that being ‘born again’ is not necessarily enlightenment. It can be that ‘Ah-Hah’ moment but more times than not most churches tell you to recite a predetermined ‘Sinner’s Prayer’ and to join their church and follow the teachings of their particular denomination or church. I have seen too many, time and time again get all worked up emotionally, go down to an altar and cry their eyes out and genuinely feel better in that moment and confuse that with actually being born again and having a spiritual experience and enlightenment. They confuse the release they get from a good cry with a true spiritual life-changing experience. These often get over it in a few days and go right back to the way they lived before.

I was not one of those who cried off a little emotion at the altar. I had a genuine life-changing, life-altering moment when I prayed that first prayer to be born again. I had another moment of awakening and enlightenment at an all-time low in my life and a vision of being out of my body and seated with Christ. The next came later as I grew and shook off all the religious chains and traditions that bound me and allowed God to teach me unafraid to question even the most dogmatic of teachings and traditions I was entrenched in. But when I reached that moment of true clarity and enlightenment it was like Neo flexing his muscles in the Matrix and instead of him bending to it the Matrix bent to him. If you ever have a moment of clarity like I am talking about you will know it.

    Now look at a passage of scripture with me in 2 Corinthians 3:10-18
10 For even that which was made glorious had no glory in this respect, by reason of the glory that excelleth.
11 For if that which is done away was glorious, much more that which remains is glorious.
12 Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech:
13 And not as Moses, which put a veil over his face, that the children of Israel could not steadfastly look to the end of that which is abolished:
14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remains the same veil untaken away in the reading of the Old Testament; which veil is done away in Christ.
15 But even to this day, when Moses is read, the veil is upon their heart.
16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away.
17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Apostle Paul was the writer of this passage and he was talking to some Jews and Gentiles who followed and adhered to that which Moses taught and the 600 or so interpretations of the religious leaders of their day, the Pharisees. In the same chapter before these verses, he is trying to respect their beliefs and honor what Moses gave but then he also tries to get them to see that the law of Moses was never meant to be a permanent or ideal solution. He expounded to them in as plainly as he could (“we use great plainness of speech”). He reminds them of the account recorded in Exodus 34:29-35 when Moses came down from Mt. Sinai with the Ten Commandments engraved on stone that his face

Moses Creative Commons

shone so bright from being in God’s presence they had to put a veil over his face (talk about enlightenment!). He then brings it around and tells them that when Christ came to Earth in human form he fulfilled the law of Moses and showed them the next step in their enlightenment confirming Jesus’ very own words recorded in Matthew 5:17. He continues on and continues to use the example of the veil. Now what does a veil do? It allows the wearer to see only partially and it blocks someone else from seeing the face of the person that is wearing it clearly. Think about a bridal veil. He tells them that as long as they stay stuck in Moses’ law and live according to the Pharisees’ interpretation, even fearing it, their view is obstructed from seeing the truth; like a person wearing a veil can only see partially. He says in verses 17- 18 that the person who listens to the Lord (speaking of God/ the Holy Spirit/ Jesus) is like someone removing the veil off of their eyes and looking through a glass. You can see better through a glass window than you can a veil, can’t you? And what does this person see as he looks through this glass? They see the image of God and not only see it but “are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” This is the next step that must be taken by sincere seekers of truth! I respect and don’t doubt the enlightened life-changing experiences of Buddha and anyone else who describes a life-changing experience they had but I admonish them all, Don’t Stop There! Take your enlightenment to the next level. Your eyes have been opened for a reason, your veil has been removed, but now look into the glass that the Holy Spirit wishes to present to you and see that the path continues, it does not just stop at that ‘Ah-Hah’ enlightening moment. Whatever religion, experience, writing, or prophet God used to bring you to your awakening don’t stop there, he has so much more. He wants to lead you into ALL truth. I say this same thing to Christians who claim to be born again and go to church every service that is stuck in that one life-changing moment, as good as that was, it gets even better, don’t stop, continue! Paul describes it as God wanting to take you from “glory to glory”.  He wants to indwell you and partner with your spirit and lead you into all truth. James 1:18 and Romans 8:23 imply these are only the ‘first fruits’, in other words, just the beginning.
Anyway, that is the way I see it and I have thought about this hard and long. I hope I have in no way disrespected anyone and what they believe. It is only my desire to connect with anyone willing to listen to the Holy Spirit who will guide you into all truth.

Be sure to read the prequel to this article WHAT IS ENLIGHTENMENT?

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