Article by Spiritual Now Editors
The three stages of enlightenmentSpiritual enlightenment is the basic goal of any spiritual practice that you undertake. Spiritual enlightenment marks the culminating point of your practices: when one attains spiritual enlightenment, one feels the unity of soul with everything and all the mental and physical engagements are left aside. Spiritual enlightenment is the possession of highly evolved souls, and great spiritual masters of the whole world propagate the fundamentals that they experience through spiritual enlightenment.
As it seems, spiritual enlightenment is often categorized into levels for practical purposes. Highest stage of spiritual enlightenment marks the attainment of God, but still there are certain levels through which the individual needs to evolve. It is like rising from the levels of animality to which we often tend to degrade ourselves. From the levels of animality, we rise to the level of humanity, which constitutes our true nature. And further from humanity to divinity, where we merge back in the source from where we have come. Let us, for our practical purpose, put them in stages and analyze the state of being in each stage:
The first stage of spiritual enlightenmentAt the very first level of spiritual enlightenment, the individual starts experiencing the reality as it is. It means that your mind ceases to interfere with what you are experiencing. Quite often, we are engaged in continuous talk, gossip, analyzing the environment around us, planning about future, and so on. However, when spiritual enlightenment dawns on your being, you take everything as it is.
The second stage of spiritual enlightenmentAt the second stage of spiritual enlightenment, you feel yourself in almost everything around you. You feel that you have some connection to every object and every individual in the world. It is like losing your own individuality. Spiritual enlightenment has its culmination at merging the soul in Supreme Soul, and this is where you start experiencing it. You feel that you are not individual anymore and not separate from anything. You feel that you are in everything and everything is just a part of the Supreme Soul from where you also have emerged.
The third stage of spiritual enlightenmentAt the third stage of spiritual enlightenment, you no longer feel connected to everything but realize you are everything. Because spiritual enlightenment gives you the experience of oneness with God, you feel that you are not separate from anything. You are not merely the body, sense, mind, and faculty of intellect: you are what everything else is. This stage of spiritual enlightenment imparts the direct experience of oneness.
Spiritual enlightenment is the fruit that sets you free, as you lose all wants and wishes to receive the fruits of your actions. You feel the bliss of completeness through spiritual enlightenment. At first it gives you the feeling that you need “Light”. At the next stage, you feel that you are merging in “Light”. At the culminating stage, you feel that you are no more separated from “Light”–you and “Light” are one.
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