When I started my spiritual quest, I would have never thought that awakening was a simple process. My mind was full of colourful “clichés” but I would not see that what I was seeking was already “with me”, that I was already there.
My mind was just excited and way too busy with its excitement to pay attention to my presence, my permanent nature, it was probably too simple and did not fit to the little story of awakening that my mind had created.
I am not sure that my mind, at that time, would have really wanted to awaken anyway. Especially if it knew it would never “happen to him” but that he would just dissolve in the process.
Before awakening you will think that you are an individual that is going to awaken, but it is an illusion. What awakens is the presence in which the mind activity occurs, this is an important key to awakening.
Before awakening, most of the seeking activity is operated by the mind at the “horizontal” and dualistic level of the world of objects, forms and labels, the realm of the mind. “Which spiritual strategy and techniques am I going to adopt?”, “Should I concentrate on my chakras?”, “How many times a day should I meditate?”, “Will mantras help me to awaken?”, “Should I wear amethyst to attract positive energies?”, those questions reflect an activity essentially polarised at the level of the mind.
There is no permanent individual “in there” but there is a real tangible triangle of substance-energy-consciousness that we call the personality and that personality is the instrument through which Presence operates, consciously or unconsciously. Transfiguration simply is the process through which that personality is finely tuned and optimized after awakening.
It wouldn’t be wise nor correct to say that the activity of mind has no part to play in awakening, it is a useful tool, but only when it serves the partially awakened presence not when it completely runs the show for its own gain.
In a mysterious way the mind is also a manifestation of Presence but as it manifests as the mind, Presence appears to “disappear to itself”. Hence the necessity to be able to, initially, witness and control the activity of your mind, it is the first step to awakening and, in that regard, meditation can be useful.
It is not easy to say what triggers awakening, it would seem that all experiences are different, intimate and often very abstract. What I can surely say is that an intense desire to stand in the fire of the truth motivated by an open heart and a pure impersonal intent can only accelerate the process.