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Becoming Enlightened

Melli O'Brien

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Melli O'Brien

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Becoming Enlightened

Personalized support for learning how to integrate mindfulness into your life. Delivered fresh everyday by our world renowned experts. Choose meditation duration:

Hi, and welcome to your Daily Mindfulness.

Today, we're going to talk about

the concept of becoming enlightened.

Now it's a wonderful thing to be drawn

towards the experience of waking up.

This desire is what gives us the

motivation to learn to release ourselves

from suffering and stress and find greater

degrees of freedom and peace of mind.

And one of the greatest challenges

on the path of awakening is that we

often bring with us the condition

to attitudes and ideas that

dominate our mainstream culture.

Now in Western culture, especially,

we're taught from a young age to strive,

to accomplish and achieve things and to

expect that we will feel fulfilled or

more special once we get to that goal.

We're rewarded, for instance, when

we do well on a test in school,

when we win a competition, when we

make the cut of the sporting team.

And then as adults, we strive after

status maybe, wealth, career success,

or to be the perfect partner.

We have these ambitions

that we constantly pursue.

We love to accomplish goals.

So when it comes to the path of

mindfulness and we hear about this

concept of enlightenment, this

possibility of enlightenment, the

danger is that we bring these attitudes

in and make awakening into another

ambitious goal to attain in the future.

Another goal that we believe when

we get there will finally make

us whole and happy and complete.

But when it comes to awakening, you're

not seeking to attain some future state.

That's the mental trap that so

many of us can get caught up in.

We create this mental image of some

special state called enlightenment

that's out there in the future,

something that we want to achieve.

And then we set about striving towards it.

Now the irony is the more we focus on the

outcome of attaining enlightenment in the

future, the more strongly we attach to

that idea that the more that we reinforce

the idea that who we are right now and

where we are right now is not acceptable,

it's not enough, we're not there yet.

And the attachment to that idea makes

it impossible to be awakened, present

in this moment right now fully,

which is the only place where we

can really do the work of awakening.

So instead we want to let go

of the goal and simply aim to

be present right here and now.

This allows us to approach our

practice with wholeheartedness,

acceptance and ease.

This message was beautifully summed

up by Eckhart Tolle when he said.

"Even my desire to become free or

enlightened is just another craving for

fulfillment or completion in the future."

So he said, "Don't seek to become free

or enlightened, just become present."

In today's meditation, we'll

explore this a little further.

So I invite you to settle in for that.

And as always, thank you for your

practice and your presence here.

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