E n l i g h t e n m e n t ?
Enlightenment Is the Means, Not the End.
As a student of Knowledge (Steps to Knowledge), I’ve shifted my thinking, perception, and ideas about “enlightenment.” Enlightenment is not an end in itself. (“Freedom” is another topic that’s undergone revision in my thinking, but that’s for another blog.) Enlightenment is a means by which we unburden ourselves in order to serve this world.
Ingrid Rowland, in her recent book, The Collector of Lives, paraphrases Socrates and sums it up this way: “All the enlightenment in the world is worth nothing, unless it is brought back down to Earth to help other people.” (translation hers)
Helping others. Purpose. How?
Imagine a fire that doesn’t singe, yet burns away all that is impure and confusing; a fire that cannot be extinguished, yet is gracious and loving. This is the Spiritual Fire. It resides deep within, beneath the surface of the mind. The desire to create, the desire to contribute, the knowing that there is more to life all come from this fire. It is “the engine of your greater life. …
… It is the fire of love. It is the fire of courage. It is the fire of determination. It is the fire of compassion and forgiveness.” –The Spiritual Fire
With this fire all the best attributes we associate with what it is to be human—forgiveness, empathy, recognition—are brought to bear from the deepest part of ourselves. Our purpose springs from this platform, the Spiritual Fire—which is the Fire of Knowledge.
“Knowledge represents your True Self, your True Mind and your true relationships in the universe. It also possesses your greater calling in the world and a perfect utilization of your nature, all of your inherent abilities and skills, even your limitations—all to be given for good in the world.” (Steps to Knowledge; Step 2)
“Knowledge is the power beyond all power. Knowledge is the strength beyond all strength. Knowledge is the courage beyond all courage. It gives everyone authority according to their nature and purpose and design in the world at this time.” (THE NEW MESSENGER; “Walking With the Messenger.”)
We all came to this world endowed by the Creator with this gift of Knowledge, which connects us to Source and all sentient life everywhere. It is the Spiritual Fire that burns within us with the mystery of who we are and why we have come. May our enlightenment lead us to this Fire.