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January 20, 2008

Spiritual Enlightenment - An Essay

This is the only one of all my essays that I have kept in my entire life. It dates from July 2003. This is an essay I wrote to pass my English at my previous college, and I wrote with great effort – six pages every revision without using a computer. It was hell but the produce was and still is heaven.

The title is “Spiritual Enlightenment.” I hope you read it despite the length (1,515 words) because it is really astonishing.


Have you ever sought enlightenment to feel that forgotten glorious experience in your soul? Of course, you have. But how did you know about enlightenment? Why search for it if you have never experience it? You see, enlightenment did not just pop out from nowhere. It had a history of development. In ancient times, we discovered and worshipped gods and goddesses. We carried our beliefs until one belief took over another one. Let us fast forward to the time when Romans ruled the lands. With their pope, they colonized and converted the barbarians and the outcasts to their religion. They said that we have to do this and that, pray like this, not like that, and the like. They manipulated our beliefs and thoughts. But when a major event – the Vatican Council II (the 21st general/ecumenical council of the Roman Catholic Church which took place between October 11, 1962 and December 8, 1965) – occurred, our beliefs and thoughts were free. We started shouting our questions to the world. Our conscience and way of thinking slowly changed. We sought ways and sources to attain these answers for our questions. Our focus of thoughts changed. From spirituality to science and/or vice versa, we searched for those answers. Then, we started to improve science and choose a spirituality to lean on. Yet it does not stop there. As you breathe now, everything changes even if you are not aware of it. Maybe at this moment, you have questions in mind or, somewhere in the distant future, you will find something to seek. From the birth of this planet or of this universe, we have only stayed here for just a short time. We are like animals, always hungry, but hungry for knowledge. Yet, as obvious as it is, our changes have never stopped and our need continues to grow. That is why enlightenment, especially spiritual enlightenment, is sought to satiate our hunger for the answers we seek. Spiritual enlightenment is more important for me because mental enlightenment can be accomplished through the sciences. While spiritual enlightenment can be achieved through personal reflections, strategic planning, and extensive social support. These are like the parts of a living plant.

Reflection is important because it is the root of interest and planning is the stem. To uphold all of this, social support, like oxygen and water, must be present. Thus, enlightenment is the flower, the fruit of patience and hardship. How can I ever be influenced by the fragrance of the flower if there is no flower? But, as I was a loner, I had so much time to reflect on my life and my questions of it. So, I reflected on my personality and on my attitude. I wonder what should be changed and not be changed. So, that my life would be easier on me and how I prayed for it. Yet reality detaches me from these dreams – these reflections. Then I really experienced life as it is – full of successes and failures. My experiences of God and my religion gave me desire to attain spiritual enlightenment because I needed specific answers. I wanted to understand God. Possibilities are limitless but to name a few, I can be a priest and I can let my life serve the Lord till I can grasp what he likes me to do. I can research for these answers in bibles, works and other forms. Or I can just quit and see my answers at the gates of Heaven by waiting for my life to expire or I will shorten my life. But what this enlightenment will do to me is unknown. I think it will ease my mind and caress my heart to a higher place. It will lead me to someplace where I am superior to the unenlightened. All of these gave me the interest to pursue spiritual enlightenment. I feel a need for it. It is like my last meal before I die.

If you have the reason to attain enlightenment, then you must know how. Strategic planning is the first step in attaining spiritual enlightenment. So, we can arrange our thoughts and unite them to one. We are mortals and we are limited in some factors. One of them is time. Time limits our life. Time was created by early man to schedule his daily life. For us, enlightenment seekers, we need it to schedule our progress and with another factor, maturity, we know our level of thinking. This tells us that our views might be difficult to achieve while some persons need just to pursue some small goals to attain their spiritual enlightenment. The length we have to go through can be determined in our pace of development. This might be due to our interest or our willingness to go through what should we do from one level to another. The things to be done are the most important. Thoughts are useless if it will not be acted out and/or be applied in our actions. Be devoted. It maintains interest and refrains us from falling even when we’re failing. It is the life support of our interest. Another important act you should do is to pray. Praying refreshes one’s status. It heals the poison of temper and gives an optimistic mind. It stretches the muscles of your spirit and cools the fire in the mind. Knowing is a must do to understand where we are and what development we are in. It determines where or what our source of sorrow is, if taken seriously. It is an action – a path – taken by one. For it takes one to know one. Never will it take one to know two. To know one’s self is to be oneself. Once you know the source of sorrow, it should be eliminated. If it can be created, it can be eliminated. This elimination must be done quickly because sources of sorrow may appear and disappear unexpectedly. If done quickly, we will have immunity towards it the next time the source of sorrow will appear. No man is an island, as the saying goes. We need to have other views and open our minds to other things but some views are not that effective. Before using other perspectives, we should test them and make sure their results are good. Once done, we can apply them to the daily decisions in our lives. Again, acting our thoughts will prove that our beliefs are useful. It will give us the opportunities to move on. We must flow like the wind and must not rot in the deep. For God has given us a gift to act and it would be failing to accept it when we don’t use it.

My extensive social support upheld the roads I passed by and, I know, you have your own supports. People are such great helpers plus they gave me more views in life in spite of the views I originally have. Man’s outlook on life gave me an idea that there are other ways of thought different from mine. With that, they achieved with their beliefs and they were successful at it. It really inspired me to see that they achieved what they conceived. It is a great act that they have told the world what they will do and they have done it. Books, another external influence, opened my eyes and my mind to a world full of amazing things and simple wonders. Books of evolution tell me man and spirit are changing and developing to a higher level of energy but both are in a different pace. A higher level of energy also means higher consciousness that means the level of thoughts is advanced and the spirit is freer. For example, the spirit can change from a sorrowful to a glorious state of feeling and it can detach from the body – which is a materialistic object. Surroundings can affect a person’s life from neonate to old-aged. A harsh surrounding can make a person be aggressive towards other people and can be a training ground for criminals while a serene surrounding can make a person light-hearted and merciful. Surroundings are like music. They can really change a person’s mood and aura through the rhythm and beat. If people find themselves spiritually inadequate, they start searching for an answer that will satiate the emptiness of their life.

Attaining spiritual enlightenment is a momentous event and can be viewed as a model for people who want to be enlightened. It would be a great opportunity to achieve enlightenment because it is only been successful to few who have lived to have it. It is so great because, again, time limits us from doing or acquiring it. Attaining it would signify that man or a part of man has reached a certain point that tells us that enlightenment is easier to achieve than in the past. It would mean that any mortal has the right to be enlightened. It also tells us man continues to develop and that enlightenment is just one of the steps in attaining the last evolution of man.

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