The enlightenment intensive is a path that guides you in staying present to yourself, in the here and now.
The practice of presence keeps you aware of yourself at all times thus letting go of the tendency of the personality or ego, to escape and search in the past or in the future for something that is not.
The origin of the impulse to flee from ourselves
The fear of knowing oneself makes people run very fast: they run in all directions, with any excuse or pretext, in order not to stay here, not to live the now. The society is the collective derivation of this individual trend, implemented.
Why do we tend to flee, running here and there? What are we afraid of finding within us?
* We don’t know our being and how to come in contact with it. We haven’t being taught to recognize it, so the unknown scares us, even if it means to discover ourselves.
* We are identified with the personality, a control mechanism through which the society perpetuates our conditioning, driving us to constantly look outside of ourselves; we are afraid of the unusual, of what is different.
*We are afraid to discover that we are someone we don’t want to be, someone who has been condemned, criticized, by deeds done in unawareness and that are however humanly understandable.
Our inner critic pushes us further away from who we really are, keeping the majority of us in the illusion of being someone we are not. We believe to be the entity that commits mistakes, therefore we get overwhelmed by shame, feeling wrong, or having committed acts that are seen as unforgivable from the prospect of self-criticism.
And so we run: toward money, to ensure survival, to have better relationships, to “do better”, to get entertained and to entertain, avoiding what would bring the race to it’s end, that is, to contact our true nature.
The illusion of being able to achieve something by escaping
The problem is that, no matter how fast we run, we cannot escape ourselves. We’ll be wherever we go, we are the ones from which we are running away from. It is a paradox, impossible and unconscious: that’s why it is a source of unhappiness.
By confronting ourselves, we in fact confront our ego, and the associated illusion of being wrong, unworthy, imperfect.
In the attempt to escape ourselves, we chase the mirage of being able to feel good and in place once we obtain things which are external to us, and from which our identity depends on: our social role, the recognition and consideration deriving from it, the objects we own, etc. … .
This may temporarily buffer the anxiety of being separated from ourselves. But it is a lost battle; dissatisfaction leaks in a superficial contentment given by compensating with a surrogate of the only true value: our being.
It isn’t only the futility of things, situations and relationships in which we get involved that makes us feel dissatisfied, but also the self-judgment carried on wth an automatism that characterizes the interior environment we feel acquainted with.
The illusion of being wrong
Our being has always been here, just we’ve never considered its existence nor encountered it directly, because in it nothing objective can be seen. It is such an intimate and clear subjectivity, so delicate and powerful that no self-judgment on anything we do can take root there.
It has no doubt so any action that flows from it is complete and perfect in itself. There are no mistakes.
The error is due to the interference of the mind that does not act totally, because it is afraid of making mistakes, so it acts partially. The sense of being wrong, doubts, fears, result from not having acted with all of yourself. A partial action is not even worth to be called an action, but rather a reaction, because it comes from conditioning. Escaping is an example.
The action that springs from the contact with being is free, and through it we experience a sense of liberation and completeness.
One feels of having given everything because all the energy has been involved in the action: between feeling and acting the mental activity does not creep in, with its calculations, its “if” and “but” or “maybe.”
A total action cannot come from a mental space, from the ego, because the outcome of such action goes back to where it originated. Ego calls for the ego, being calls for being.
Existence is like a valley that echoes, returning all that we do in it; it is a merciless mirror. But this is why we can connect to it directly by starting from who we really are, because we are not separate from what is real, the substrate of existence itself. The sound of our real voice echoes back to us as accurately as is the reflection of our original face.
The enlightenment intensive: stop and look at Yourself
Stop running and see: the enlightenment intensive is just that, a direct look into the mirror of existence, that is us. And whoever has done it, could only recognize himself in his nakedness and glory.
To look elsewhere needs a constant effort, requires the continuous use of our energy that is inexorably wasted, unnecessarily because nothing valuable is achieved by looking at the ego wall. In it there is nothing, except an accumulation of unsolved problems: the ego itself is an unsolved and unsolvable problem. The solution is to turn our eyes in the right direction, which we have never been educated to do indeed. We have rather been taught to compete, to fight, to pursue objectives that have nothing to do with us. And unless we recognize who we are, no achievement will be valuable enough to satisfy us.
The enlightenment intensive means to look in the right direction: not at the ego, but through it. Everything else happens accordingly.
The enlightenment intensive: to realize that you are already free
As long as we are identified with our mind, we try to solve the problems it creates from within it. It is like trying to escape from the prison but without the awareness of being a prisoner. Nevertheless the tendency to escape should already be a clear sign that we feel enslaved, hunted.
Ordinarily we try exiting the mental prison by trying to pass through the wall: this is when we attempt to understand the mind by using the mind, analysing, comparing, thinking of past experiences and referring to the concepts we have accumulated. We elaborate, process, articulate words, considerations. But the wall still remains there intact, because the key for our search to be successful is missing: we are still running away from us.
The enlightenment Intensive tackles it from another point of view: it invites us to stop and contact our being, which is tantamount to turn on the light of awareness, which clearly shows where’s the door.
These are just words. In reality there is no door, because there is neither room nor prison. We are inherently free, but it is impossible to discern it from the ego perspective: it becomes a cage just because we ordinarily believe it to be true and therefore we nurture it. With the mind we create the illusion of being prisoners and the consequent tendency is to want to escape from it.
We have no other means of comparison. Or so we believe, because we don’t know ourselves as awareness.
But when we recontact who we are, we remember: then the cage ceases to be, falls by itself. To disintegrate it, isn’t an action. It is the realization that it never existed, except through our belief in its reality.
So every compulsion to escape ceases, and we begin to savour the beauty of being. Who is free does not flee, but stays.
To see is to have power: the responsibility
This is the essence of the Enlightenment Intensive: seeing to remember, touching to feel. This marks the beginning of a new life.
By re-owning your life, you begin to really live in a responsible way. You are able to take care of yourself rightly, because you stop running, escaping.
To be responsible before knowing who you are, is impossible. The responsibility that is ordinarily practiced, is based on “good intentions”, on a socially accepted interpretation on what is right and what is wrong, that has been instilled in our minds to keep us within this duality, which condemns for moral errors and grants grace for right conduct. It is a political game, perpetrated to keep people inside a mental cage so they can be better controlled. If we are not the masters of ourselves, we’ll be subjected to be slaves of the mind, both our own and that of someone else’s.
Real responsibility comes from seeing, and it is inevitable to be responsible when your eyes are open. You can see only in the present, when you stop, not while fleeing. Who runs, has a confused view. Who is firm in itself and sees, acts accordingly, is responsive, not reactive, so it ceases to blame others, the world, politicians, parents, etc …
We are the ones who in the first place delegate our power, by demanding others to be rescued, directed, recognized, even if we do it unconsciously, due to the believe that we are not able to do it ourselves. So when our expectations are inevitably unmet, we feel sorry for ourselves.
By reconnecting to who we are, we regain the power that is ours, becoming the architects of our own lives. A creative process begins.
The purposeless, compulsive, visionless running comes to an end. We begin to act with clarity. The enlightenment intensive represents the terminus of the mind, of the ego: here their race ends. They may still continue a bit by inertia, but it will be an empty movement, exhausted, because our participation will no longer be there.
Starts the journey of discovering our potential, which is the unfolding of our lives as not separate from the universal life. Being who we are means at the same time being the masters of ourselves, so no one can affect our inherent freedom, no one has the power to put doubts into our minds, because we see for ourselves what is right, what supports our expansion, what is good, a goodness that is not only childish contentment, but that contributes to the common good as a result of our actions aimed at fulfilling ourselves.
We have nothing to lose and everything to gain; the fear we may have is the fear of being alone, of growing: if the seed is to become a flower, it must die as a seed. But the death we fear is not our death. In fact, if we do not break free from our shell, we are not living: we remain an unexpressed potential. Our soul is a seed enclosed by the ego, which protects its vulnerability and properties for a while, until the individual feels the longing to grow into the open, into the sunlight.
Truth is simple, we cannot even imagine how. We are used to complications because to escape from oneself is complicated, naturally we are prone to think that the same is the case with truth also. Is it easier to keep on running like crazy, or to stop and look? It doesn’t mean to stop doing the things that at present life demands from us, but rather to stop running inside, by trying to keep up with every thought, every emotion, swaying like a reed in the wind of personality.
If you have not been able yet to shirk its vortex, it is understandable: you have done it since always; it has become a habit.
The enlightenment intensive breaks this habit, puts you in front of yourself in your simplicity, giving you plenty of time to recognize and re-unite with who you are. And when that happens you will be laughing: about yourself, about your running like mad, about your daydreams. It is like waking from a dream, that seems true when one is inside it, but we recognize its illusory nature as soon as we open our eyes to the new day: our True Nature.
By Renata Rosa Ughini and Asimo Caliò Roberto
Copyright 2014 – All rights reserved –
with Renata and Asimo
for more information CLICK HERE