I do not believe in any form of final illumination as the end point of a spiritual journey. If enlightenment there is, it will be temporary anyway for everything in the universe is cyclic and not to be aligned on a straight line. Hence what counts is the Way, the Journey, the fact to be Moving, for in movement is development, and only in movement.
The static life of the dogma-believer and religion-addict is based on ideals that are what they are: idealistic beliefs without a foundation of ‘goingness’ and thus without an inherent developmental dynamics. Somatized in the body, the static lifestyle manifests as sclerosis and arthritis. These ‘cracking’ conditions that made an end to the natural smoothness of all joints and articulations says: ‘I do not want to flow. I want to stay where I am. I keep to the known. I keep to my beliefs. Otherwise I would be afraid of life. When I flow, I lose ground and this shatters all my senses and I panic. Hence, for me security is more important than spirituality.’
In addition, the belief in religious dogma and ritual adds foreign elements to one’s inner purity that have no place there. For if this inner pond or landscape gets spoiled, we lose all, we lose our soul! Thus we need to keep that inner mind pure and unspoiled, and free of any alienating beliefs and rituals.
This is really possible as I found out over the last thirty years or so of ‘freemanship’ and ‘selfthinkerhood’ or how you want to call the autonomous spiritual quest, also called ‘spiritual sufficiency.’ But you do not need to even call it ‘spiritual’ at all. It is a state of ongoing inner joy that leaves a space open for the unknown to unfold.
When you keep yourself in this natural flow condition, which ensures that also your emotions keep to be flowing and changing, you experience natural contentment, simply because it is the natural state of being. Small children are in that state of creative flow all the time, most adults however would need a diet to get there.
This diet is achieved by a sort of internal feng shui: cleaning your inner clutter for removing the obstacles to the flow that years of static living have possibly brought about in your life. There are no hard objects to remove as when you are cleaning your house. But subtle habits, addictions, beliefs and a thousand preferences have got you in a worse condition than with your house or garage cluttered. This kind of inner mess is worse than a messed up living space for it is much more difficult to clean up. I needed about ten years or so for this kind of inner cleansing.
And before that could happen, I needed to make a decision about it, and before I could make that decision, I needed to build awareness about it, first of all. The building of that awareness is the toughest element in the entire process, it is the most difficult to achieve. For our ego does all to keep our inner pond polluted for then it can make its voice heard easily and clearly.
Many people on the spiritual journey today reverse the process: they try to get away with their ego, or weaken their ego, to arrive at a more pristine inner flow condition. But that way of doing is awkward and dangerous as well. We need a functional ego for all day-to-day tasks, and for functioning in an ego-based society.
Thus I came to believe that it is much safer and easier to keep your ego untouched and to work on removing the inner clutter in the form of addictive and static beliefs, for example the belief in competition, the belief in achievement, the belief in punishment and reward, the belief in male superiority or female emancipation, the belief in dogma, religious guidance, social status and distinguishing values, and worse, the belief in superior knowledge, the power of an ‘elitist’ education and the glamour of a ‘great career.’ All these beliefs obstruct our inner flow and lead to static conditions in life, which in turn bring about a static and rigid body, and thereby hasten death.
The death of all belief equals the removal of all internal disturbance and represents the first step to a state of lasting inner peace. But it is only the first step, for there is more to spiritual autonomy. It requires active involvement in daily life rather than a life ‘in an office’ and that means: all and everything in the household needs to be embraced and all chores need to be done with equal magnanimity.
And in this realm of ‘oikos,’ the ancient Greek word for ‘household’ lies our ecology; the wisdom of understanding the interconnectedness of nature and the universe can unfold once you are ready to embrace all-that-is in your natural flow condition.