Got it - Lost it Awakenings
Phase 1: The Enlightenment journey begins
Many on the spiritual path have a whopping Awakening that will hit out of the blue. This is typically some sort of transcendental, spiritual or God-type experience then it's gone. You'll certainly feel the I want that back. Unfortunately the pillar No3 evidence is that it has gone if you are pillar No4 self honest.
Lost Awakenings are a taste of Enlightenment. These can become ongoing and then permanent in Phase 3 onwards. The 9 pillar framework sets out why the experience of Enlightenment was temporary. Can you guess why?
How was your Presence practice through that video? Did the birds distract? Were you able to juice into Presence? How much effort was applied to the steps of Correct Presence Practice. This is all indicative of what is real for you.
Per the introduction, if all the birds and mayhem is too much for you there is an extensive 1 hour video from 2019 in the Awakening phases overview page. As you Awaken your attention span will grow and the magic of the birds will not distract. The birds so play out what is being spoken, it's like Grace is directing them.
Laws of Grace / Presence Practice courses
Phase 1 Awakening & Presence experiences
A person can experience a wide variety of spiritual experiences that can last from a few milliseconds to weeks or months. Often an Awakening experience can be a real shock as well as a great experience to have.
Eventually this will end and the normal levels of connection and non-Presence will return. The wanting to be back in that higher consciousness is a sign that you have fallen out of it. If the experience of Presence is not ongoing then typically this is the phase you are in. Some tend to believe that because they had a significant experience, even one that may have lasted for months, they are now fully Present all the time. Check the evidence and apply self honesty. This is a hindrance to progress at this point because it is the mind's thinking and the ego has taken ownership of the experience.
Also, after significant experiences of Awakening, you may crash and enter states of depression and withdraw from life. If the crash is big you may want to leave humanity altogether, but please note that is just an aspect of you wanting the deeper truth. Thus dispatching yourself will not solve the problem. If feeling this way then watch this feeling suicidal video as it's important to understand those thoughts and feelings.
Talk to that part of yourself that wants to leave and find out what it wants. Inquire into it. Seek assistance immediately if you are feeling this way. Use this as motivation to practice Presence with more consistency. That means to be in the moment fully, not in avoidance of the pain that comes with being a human. Feeling a bit Crazy (nuts, insane etc) at times is also natural and is discussed here.
The mental and emotional pain will end as you practice through it. It is important to point out here that in some audio recordings Eckhart Tolle, eg: dissolving the pain-body DVD/cd, states that even people with quite heavy pain-bodies typically dissolve them within two years of consistent practice. After the pain-body is dissolved strong depression and suicidal tendencies will be unlikely. This is because you will be anchored more in the moment with no drag from your past pain. Your practice of living in the present moment will also be more consistent and deepening.
In this phase you may not have significant experiences of consciousness. If you are practicing the practice of Presence, as described here or by Eckhart Tolle, Adyashanti (etc.), you may experience it as something simple and still. The indicators are stillness, spaciousness and calmness that can be felt concurrently with what is happening in the moment as you do your best to practice Presence in your life.
Ironically this ordinariness of stillness, spaciousness and calmness is what becomes normal once you have been in the Abiding Presence (phase 3) for a few years. Everybody is different. Experiences of profound states can be just as much of a hindrance to progress as the desire to have them is by those who have not had them.
Addiction to metaphysical experiences and chasing bliss can be quite a problem. The experiences and feelings such as bliss, ecstasy and samadhi that occur are not Presence per se but a by-product that may occur. Bliss and spiritual phenomena may also happen by creating it in the mind. That can then generate fake feelings in the body. Can you tell the difference?
I made this error for twelve long years while I also had genuine experiences. Knowing the difference will stop you staying stuck in this first phase of Awakening. Yes, they all feel real, but that is why the human makeup is so special, it really can make up fake stuff and it seems genuine. The fastest way to know the difference is one-on-one coaching. I'll be able to help you find clarity on this, then as you test it the real situation will be come very evident. The other is wait a decade, if you are not in phase 3 Abidance by then you have your answer that something wasn't real. The 9 pillar framework will point to the cause if you did not progress to phase 3 non-enlightenment.
In this phase you will be actively disassembling your emotional baggage (or pain-body as Tolle terms it) either through doing introspective work, inquiry or by dealing with reactions as they happen in your daily life. This is the most challenging aspect of this journey. Sweeping your unconscious behaviours and reactions under the carpet will no longer be possible.
The practice of Presence is by trial and error, and your experience of what it is to be Present will change and deepen on an ongoing basis. The trick of practice and the discovery that it requires your volitional attention to check the steps of Correct Presence Practice will be a learning curve for you.
In the Laws of Grace course I call this the grunt phase. It is hard work. Yes, it seems difficult, impossible and relentless to apply yourself to practice. This is entirely natural as pillar No5 the unconscious mind has to learn this habit correctly and then apply it to all areas of your life. It does get easier. You do earn your Enlightenment. Correct habit is pure mathematics of time and attention. The shorter path is coaching from someone who lives this and a community who are also learning this as a lifestyle.
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