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The Spiritual Path

by Ken Lloyd Russell


The spiritual path is not to perfect who you think you are or to become who you think you should be. It is not an aid to polishing and refining your personality so it can attain more of what it wants, whether that be affection, love, power, prestige, sex, wealth, or even being spiritual. No! The spiritual path is to discover who you really are.

This discovery of who you really are is so stupendous that no one has been able to accurately describe it. It is far beyond the conception of even the most creative mind. You will discover that what you envision as the highest good pales in comparison to the reality of what you actually are. And you are it—right now!

All the spiritual path does is to help you remove that which prevents you from being this reality. The spiritual path is subtractive. You do not need to add to or improve or develop yourself—only to discover what lies buried under the accumulation of life experiences. The spiritual path helps you see that what you took yourself to be is not you but a social fiction, necessary for functioning in the world, yet only a tiny fragment of your actuality.

You will come to understand that it is your identification with this social creation, this apparent "you," that does not allow you to actually be your reality. On your path you will be encouraged to drop what is not essential. Your parents’ beliefs, which have formed your own, are not essential. Your society’s beliefs are not essential. Your sense of accomplishment is not essential. Your sense of failure is equally not essential. No thought whatsoever is essential.

All these are obscurations, covering some-thing of infinite worth, a something that has been called God, Buddha-nature, Christ consciousness, the Self, or the Tao, according to the religion trying to describe it. You come to realize your Self by dropping more and more of what you are not. What you are can never be destroyed or diminished. It can only be covered up. Your nature is like a diamond that has been buried under garbage; the diamond is perfect, having the potential to reflect the radiance of the universe, needing only to be removed from the refuse and cleaned off.

You say this is not your experience, that you have all kinds of problems, relationship difficulties, bad habits, compulsions, hang-ups. In fact, you only appear to have these problems, in much the same way you appear to have problems when you dream. Our consensual, social life is like a dream, and you have been hypnotized into believing your per-sonality is you. In fact, and this can be observed if you wish, you are that which is aware of all this, rather than that which appears to be happening. Your personality occurs within the context of your Self.

We are so bewitched by this appearance that we forget our reality. It is like living in the Seattle area, where you may not see the sun for days. But the sun is always there, its power and glory undiminished by clouds and fog. Which is more powerful, and which will continue? The clouds and fog dissipate leaving no trace, while the sun shines on untouched by them. Your true nature is the sun, your personality but clouds and fog.

On the spiritual path, your human understandings are clouds and fog, including those that come from conventional religions. Your ideas of virtue are as much ignorance as your ideas of sin. If you believe yourself to be virtuous, you may be fooling yourself, unwittingly becoming a hypocrite. However, if you believe yourself to be a sinner, you are just as mistaken, and you will suffer needlessly. Virtue and sin are concepts of the social environment, not the spiritual realm. They are there to ensure the harmonious functioning of society, not to enable individuals to realize their true nature.

Your essential being cannot be soiled by sin, no matter how grievous, nor improved by virtue, no matter how noble. This, however, does not mean we can disregard social mores, for society inflicts punishment on those who deviate from its rules and regulations. Also, what we do, whether or not it meets society’s standards, can either bring us closer to ourselves or estrange us further from ourselves, can increase the clouds and fog or help clear them.

Unfortunately, our present society tends to handsomely reward those who are willing to deviate the most from the spiritual path. It rewards those who are willing to disconnect from their Selves in exchange for society’s toys and distractions. If you put all your energy into making a lot of money, having a beautiful house, becoming loveable or famous, or proving the worth of your existence through accomplishment, society may approve of you; but you will distance yourself from something of infinite value, your Self. And then, no matter what your outward success, your life cannot be fulfilling.

The spiritual path is the antidote to the forces of society that alienate us from our Selves. The spiritual path is the means to come back to what we really are, something of infinite worth and magnitude. And this something is always there, just awaiting our attention.

Copyright 2004 by Ken Lloyd Russell.

 

Ken Lloyd Russell is a mystic and has been helping people for 38 years. He has created a unique approach to spiritual transformation, "The Way of SeeingR, a very simple yet highly practical way that can be used in everyday life. Full information and helpful articles are at http://www.thewayofseeing .com/ including info on his weekly radio show.

 

 


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