The following is a transcript of the video:
“The Divine and Disillusionment”
which you can find here.
Welcome everyone to this gathering of Full Dawn Circle. Thank you for being here.
The mission of Full Dawn Circle is to share the insights and knowledge revealed through in-depth spiritual exploration and authentic revelation; and to reach out to seekers of truth.
Here we strive to bring ourselves into alignment with the divine, and into balance, so that we may best be prepared to awaken to our true nature and divine reality; and share in fellowship, in community, with others as we grow and mature in our spiritual unfoldment.
We believe each of us can become empowered with the awakening to our divine nature; and in so doing live in love, peace, contentment and joy in full alignment with the divine.
Full Dawn Circle has roots in the spiritual traditions of India, so you may recognize some of the content we discuss and share here from time to time. But our primary source of knowledge and experience is through the direct experience and recognition of the divine as it radiates its presence everywhere around and through us. It is this divine we seek to know directly. Or more accurately be, as it is the true reality of who we are.
I use the word divine a lot — maybe more often than some of you would prefer. So, let’s consider what I mean by the divine.
I am not a scholar. In most cases, my knowledge of world religions and spiritual teachings is limited to general, common knowledge. My perspective on the matter of the divine though has formed from dedicated spiritual practice and resulting revelations.
It has been my intention to seek direct truth, and not to rely on the teachings of many religious and spiritual traditions that, in my opinion, had become distorted through the passage of time — distortions that have significantly shifted the original message and the path to awakening, to consciousness, and the divine.
When I refer to divinity or the divine, I am referring to the source of all sources, prior to creation of the universe.
The divine I refer to is ever-present, now, here, everywhere, within you and without you, beyond infinity — the source of unconditional love, peace, contentment, and joy. The divine I refer to is the true reality of who you are — who we all are — and much more than what everything is.
And this divine is always shining its light, its presence, throughout creation, throughout our universe, and it is this singular divine, the source of nothing and everything, incomprehensible to the mind and intellect, with which we seek to align.
And that movement we make towards alignment brings us more into balance and prepares us for the divine grace of awakening — a progressive unfolding of our true divine nature — and the love, peace, contentment, and joy inherent within it.
Many of us here today have been associated with one or another spiritual tradition that does not speak of the divine directly. This is understandable. Many of us have tried to separate ourselves from the intellectual, emotional or moral baggage of the traditions with which we were raised, and have strayed away from concepts of god or the divine.
But, some day in our spiritual unfoldment, we will be faced with the divine, even if only a faint scent of its grace, and we will no longer be able to deny the reality of that great divinity. It is inevitable.
Some of us long for that day. Others of us are curious. And others harbor deep resistance. Still, we all will have our day faced with the divine. Not to be judged, but to touch the infinite love and joy of the divine.
Once we glimpse the divine in any one of its infinite expressions, it will bring about a profound shift. And whether we long for the day, are curious about it, or have harbored resistance, we will find that each of us is changed by it — and our ideas about the divine, about consciousness, the spiritual process, awakening, realization, and enlightenment will be seen in a new light, from a new perspective.
On the spiritual path there is much talk about reality, truth and illusion. There is much talk about what is real and unreal. And talk about ultimates. Ultimate truth. Ultimate reality. Ultimate source. And ultimate falsehood.
Talk is often full of concepts. And even if the concepts are very well formulated, each of us may have a different understanding of the intent or meaning of a concept. So, if a concept may strike each of us differently, and we may each have a different understanding of the very same concept, then where are we? What truth can be found when we each have a different understanding of the same idea? And what truth can be found when we each have the same understanding of what are actually different ideas?
After awakening to consciousness or to the divine, talk about reality, truth, and illusion is no longer talk or concepts. There is a clarity within awakening itself. Reality, truth, illusion and ultimates begin to take on a focus in deep understanding through direct knowledge, not from intellectual understanding. And the evolution or progression of awakening continues to refine the deep understanding and direct experience of what is reality, what is truth, what is illusion and what is ultimate. We find that truth differs depending on the state of being and the state of clarity to which we have risen. Truth unfolds in layers.
Prior to awakening, reality, truth, illusion and ultimates are ideas. That’s all they can be. They may be really great ideas. They may be very useful. But they are stuff of the mind and intellect. There is not necessarily anything inherently true or real about them.
On the spiritual path, depending on how many teachers we may follow, books we may read, or videos we may watch, we may come across many, many ideas and beliefs about reality, truth, illusion and ultimates. About what spirituality, awakening, self-realization and enlightenment are.
Depending on the teachings we follow, we might be engaged with numerous philosophical arguments or approaches. Some teachings may be very precise. Others a little fuzzy. Some may teach spiritual practices. Others not. Some may assert there is a spiritual path. Others may assert there is no path. Some may refer to awakening as a singular realization. Others may outline stages.
All of this can be very compelling and intellectually or emotionally satisfying. It can be comforting and bring us some peace of mind to think we know something, to think we have the answers. It can give us the sense that we are on the right track. It can reinforce a sense of purpose. Give us something to advocate or rally around. Provide us with a community of like-minded seekers and give us a sense of belonging. It can provide us a sense of security, reducing our anxiety and uncertainty, and make our world seem more predictable.
And each of us will find those teachings and those ideas and beliefs with which we feel most resonant. Our relationship to the teachings we follow will vary, drawing us closer or pushing us away. Engendering confidence or casting doubt.
And all of this is good if it supports us on our path to the divine.
As long as we can maintain the perspective that all of our spiritual study and seeking prior to awakening is fraught with concepts and beliefs; and if we maintain the perspective that these concepts and beliefs may only bear at best a faint likeness to the reality that dawns in awakening, then we are in pretty good shape.
There is a dark side to consider though. No matter how well we believe we have perspective, we can still fall prey to clinging to our beliefs, or fall prey to fundamentalism. This clinging can be an obstacle. It can lead us to look in all the wrong places, making seeking an interminable process that overlooks what is right in front of us. Right here. Right now. Always here.
If we can be vigilant, keeping in mind that spiritual teachings do not directly convey awakening or self-realization; that spiritual teachings are only aids along the way that point to the reality that dawns in the graceful moment of awakening, then we can reduce our clinging and sidestep some of the obstacles.
But there is a way that authentic spiritual unfoldment helps us avoid some of the pitfalls and obstacles. And that way is dis-illusionment. Who would have thought that disillusionment is a good thing? But it is.
Sincere, authentic spiritual unfoldment inherently carries with it the element of disillusionment — and this disillusionment can occur many times in our spiritual process.
Disillusionment is when we find that our ideas and concepts about the spiritual process are false or greatly distorted — and as a result, our understanding of those concepts must adapt or be tossed out entirely.
Dis-illusionment may start with one idea or concept we once thought was a truth. Then proceed to another idea or concept. But whether dis-illusionment occurs a little at a time or a lot at once, those ideas and concepts we have about the spiritual process will be challenged.
This leaves us in a state of dis-illusionment for a time — the dissolution of the illusion that we know something — that in all our study of spirituality, the great knowledge we amassed and thought we understood, now bears little resemblance to reality.
We become dis-illusioned. The illusion of what we think we know is dispelled in the light of awakening and the presence of the divine. As we begin to awaken, or even with a momentary glimpse of divinity, we begin to doubt what we think we know, and the prison of our beliefs, ideas and concepts begins to crumble.
No matter what ideas or beliefs we carry with us, they will be stripped away in moments of disillusionment, as whatever we believe, about consciousness, the divine, reality, truth, awakening, self-realization, enlightenment, pure or ultimate this or that, is subjected to the light of awakening consciousness and growing divine presence.
We will not even be able to treat the non-dual awakening of pure consciousness as the be all and end all of spiritual unfoldment when we come to discover that consciousness is a jumping off point into the divine — that consciousness is not the ultimate source we may believe it to be.
We will simply find that the ideas and beliefs we had prior to awakening may no longer meet the real experience of awakening itself. Such ideas and beliefs must fall, must be let go of, because they simply do not meet the test of awakening. Many ideas and beliefs will be found to be false or fantasy.
And this is reasonable to expect because we cannot truly know any experience unless we’ve had it. So while maps of stages of awakening or states of consciousness are useful to inspire us and point out landmarks along the spiritual journey, they cannot fully capture the reality of awakening, self-realization or enlightenment, or what lies beyond.
When the grace of awakening occurs, prepare to be disillusioned. Expect to be disillusioned. Remember that your ideas and beliefs may not hold up in the light of awakened consciousness. Nothing escapes this joyful scrutiny and spontaneous surrender. And you will be filled with gratitude that divine grace has conveyed this beautiful opportunity to be stripped of falsehoods, while reality and truth are illuminated.