What Spiritual Awakening is

Much has been discussed and will continue to be explored about spiritual awakening; however, its simplicity is often overlooked. Contrary to popular belief, spiritual awakening is not a sudden, magical event that transports one to a realm of light, peace, and happiness, disconnected from everyday reality. This notion is merely a fantasy conjured by the mind.

In essence, spiritual awakening involves the realization that you are more than just a limited, ever-changing individual defined by a name, traditions, culture, past, and a specific personality. Rather, you are the enduring field of awareness within which this transient individual seems to exist, alongside the rest of the world. This field of awareness, where all experiences arise and subside, is referred to as Presence, representing your true self and essential nature, and serves as the primary focus of this blog.

Spiritual awakening is often mistaken for the acquisition of increasing layers of spiritual knowledge and practice. In reality, it is about shedding these layers and letting go. It involves ceasing the “horizontal” search within the realm of thoughts and recognizing that what you seek, your true self, is present here and now, not just as a person, body, mind, or emotion, but fundamentally as pure presence.

Awakening is a revelation of a new perspective, a shift in the focal point of consciousness. Although it doesn’t instantaneously transform one’s personality, it does alleviate many fears and anxieties associated with identifying solely with the impermanent non-self. The establishment of peace and happiness is a gradual process that unfolds naturally as this newfound vision is embodied and integrated within the individual.

Spiritual awakening is not an accomplishment akin to constructing a house. When it occurs, there is nothing left but pure presence. Awakening transpires when the layers of accumulated mental constructs collapse, allowing one to step out of the river of impermanence and embrace their true, unadorned nature as pure presence. It is at this juncture that the real post-awakening work begins, a topic that I describe in other articles on this blog.

Spiritual awakening is a temporary milestone. The embodiment of this newfound perspective after awakening is an ongoing process that unfolds over time. As such, awakening does not inherently signify a person of good character. The process of embodiment is unpredictable, as it is influenced by the individual’s personality, areas of least resistance, openness of the heart, and the mental, emotional, and physical experiences that comprise their history.


6 thoughts on “What Spiritual Awakening is

  1. Martin

    You wrote, “embrace your real permanent naked nature as pure presence”. But how do you know it is permanent? What is “pure presence” made of? It seems to me that spiritual people make big claims but with weak evidence. The evidence just seems to be just intuition or quotes from spiritual authorities. It would be nice if there is a permanent end to suffering, but I see no evidence.

    1. Calwen Post author

      Hi Martin, your remarks are completely valid.

      Would any evidence of a possible end to suffering bring inner peace to you straight away? I know we like answers but would answers to the deepest mysteries bring inner peace to everyone ?

      Essentially I am only sure of one thing is that I do experience the world and this person. If we call that experience my sphere of consciousness I then become aware of energies circulating within that sphere, some are pleasant some less pleasant.

      If we honestly look at the cause of our pain and discomfort we will always find conflicting energies. If we ask ourselves « how are those energies put in motion » we will always come down to thoughts, emotions and actions put in motion based on what we see or think we see of ourselves and of the world.

      What I am saying is that, thoughts, feelings, actions and reactions are only directly associated with what you see, what you believe, what you define as your reality.

      What I called Presence is what I perceive as this unified field of consciousness shared by all and everything. That silent “space” from which emerge thoughts, feelings, actions, words and eventually what we call the world. What it is made of ? That would be a thing then wouldn’t it 🙂

      An occultist called Helena Petrovna Blavatsky said that it’s not really necessary to try to understand the ultimate reality as it is not possible for finite perceptions, she use to call that the “circle pass not”.

      This being said the Presence I am talking about is instantly perceivable…by itself…not by the mind. It’s nothing difficult in the end, it’s a bit like those 3D magic pictures, some people see it straight away, it will take longer for others but when you do see it you realise it was just a set of mind, a way to look at it.

      1. Martin

        That’s all fair enough as far as it goes. The problem is that I don’t see why people settle there. They like the positive feelings, and stop because they think they are enlightened or have reached the end of the road because it matches what the scriptures and gurus say. But the moment you question the conclusions, the whole thing is seen as unsatisfactory. If we are eternal, then it seems that suffering will recur. So any spiritual realisation/freedom is just a temporary rest. But if someone knows for sure that the end of suffering is permanent, then I’m looking for some kind of evidence, e.g. “I saw god and She explained to me how suffering can end for me forever, or She showed me how to never fall into suffering again. But there’s nothing even remotely close to that in everything I’ve read or experienced. So I would say that some kind of spiritual realisation is good for this lifetime, but there’s not proof that it’s the end of the road. Blavatsky saying that we are too limited to know is depressing. It means we could suffer miserably next life and over and over forever. Nightmare!

  2. Calwen Post author

    Chasing enlightenment is not the path of the seeker of truth, the seeker of truth is unconditionally dedicated to the unveiling of the essence, even if that means it’s complete annihilation in the process. There is a lot of spiritual tourism and fast food awakening out there nowadays, that was predictable in a world ruled but the non-self.

    We all have our essentials and questioning I guess but for me, it stops at “how can I be at peace here and now” and I do proceed from there.

    Over time I also did realise that being strongly and solely identified to a defined ego and individual Identity makes life incredibly difficult, especially with the difficult baggage that might comes with it or the self-inflating feeling that could come from beneficial circumstances.

    Once you realise that that identity is just a thought, a trick of the mind and has no basis in reality life becomes a lot easier.

    Once you realise you are that essentially that unified field of consciousness manifesting through a temporary specific form, life becomes a lot easier.

    It also helps when dealing with the idea of death.

    As I said in some of my posts we can’t escape our raw humanity but realising we are essentially not just that humanity makes things a bit sweeter.

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  4. johanne mcguigan

    Wow. Just wow. I have felt this briefly before and I’m feeling it again now. Completeness, wholeness, peace, tranquility, serenity and so on. All my life I have known inherently that something was missing or not quite right. I have suffered much pain in the past and nearly exited this mortal coil. This feeling fits and I haven’t had to be intoxicated by an external substance to get it! I’m thrilled right now. I hope I can tap into this more. Thank you! You have connected with me in a direct way and I’m grateful. One question (for now, lol) the least resistance that you mention, what it that? I’ve realised that whenever I fight against something I cause myself pain. Am I on the right track with what I think you mean here? My goodness me, my heart is full right now and I have searched for this since forever.


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