by Michael Maciel
The central reality of our existence is the Sun at the center of our Solar System. We are immersed in its life-giving energies, as though we were “in” the Sun and not merely revolving around it at a distance. The Sun is but the visible center of an organic cell — its nucleus — a cell that is over seven billion miles in diameter.
And it’s not so clear whether the Sun’s vitality isn’t due to being part of a larger network of similar cosmic entities, all of which burn with the same intelligence-laden brilliance, an intelligence not of ideas but patterns of organic thought. Their combined light is but the first visible manifestation of an ineffable, indefinable Well of Being, one that contains every possible form of life and life-giving power.
Our bodies are natural tuning forks to this combined celestial Life Wave. Why? Because they were created by it. They are the response of the chaotic cosmic soup of undifferentiated vibrations to a supra-physical formative power. God spoke and the worlds came into being.
As deeply as we may imagine, our structure — including physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual — are enervated by this “spoken” impulse — the Word. It is that by which we exist on all the multi-planes and without which we could not exist, not even as a thought.
This “spoken” impulse is the Logos, not a particular person but many persons who have aligned themselves with it to such a degree that they have become vocal-points of its expression. When they speak — whether with their voice, their thought, or their actions — their Word tends to ignite the sleeping, potential spiritual energy of anyone who is capable of receiving it.
But unless receptivity is there, the Word barely makes a dent. The requirement for ignition to occur, apparently, is the willingness to hear, not with the ears as much as with one’s spirit.
Herein lies the necessity for preparation and spiritual development in order for the Illumination Event to occur.
How to prepare for Illumination:
The energies of life are cyclical. We know this because we can watch the ebb and flow of the vitality of our bodies, the rise and fall of our emotional exuberance, and the steady ascendance of our spiritual awareness. Nothing about us is stationary. Change and life seem synonymous — the surest sign of life is movement.
Knowing this fundamental, metaphysical fact of the cycles of life enables us to harness their energies by feeding them during their upswings and withdrawing our attention on their downswings. For example, in the morning when our energies are ramping up, we lift our awareness towards the highest spiritual states we can, while at night before bed, we retrospect the day’s events one-by-one and let go of them. This is working with the cycle, not against it. Similarly, in the beginning of our life, we strive to build constructive habits, while at the close of life, we relax them so that they do not bind us at the moment of death. There are many examples of how we work constructively with cycles.
If you are fortunate enough to have a spiritual teacher, he or she has been trained to monitor the cyclic activity of your spiritual vitality. To the untrained eye, what looks like a temporary depression can actually be the point at which the inner light is in its ascendancy. The outer mind is resisting the impending expansion and so believes that its identity is in jeopardy — hence the depression. Colloquially speaking, this where people “find God at the end of their rope.”
The seeming chaos in the outer is an inverse reflection of the reorganization of one’s inner reality. Conversely, an outer enthusiasm and enhanced physical activity is not always an accurate indication of a person’s readiness to “die on the cross.”
Confidence isn’t always a good thing. In fact, it is more likely to get in the way. This is why discursive means of study are discouraged, while contemplation and devotional readings are encouraged. The teacher may, in fact, work to undermine the student’s confidence so that surrender is made easier.
The sole purpose of mental instruction during the time leading up to the Illumination Event is to loosen the mass-mind beliefs that will prevent the student from letting go at the crucial moment. The proper kind of instruction during this phase is metaphysics — those teachings that contradict the evidence of sensory logic.
One of the best methods for this is teaching students how to get their prayers answered. Nothing blows a hole in the mass-mind wider than a good ‘ole demonstration of the Law of Prayer. When it happens, one’s entire belief system comes crashing down. The worldly mind doesn’t know what to do with the new phenomenon, and in its confusion (sometimes panic) all the doors and windows are left open, providing an excellent opportunity for the astute teacher to upload the most seditious seed-thoughts — seditious, that is, to the student’s mass-mind belief systems.
Much of this is basic psychology — reprogramming the mind so that it resonates better with divine ideas. But more is required than mere resonance. There has to be a deliberate ignition of the spiritual life force within the individual. Only a person trained in this kind of work can do it safely and effectively.
Sometimes, the Illumination event can happen spontaneously but only when the standard prerequisites are fulfilled, however that might happen, whether by design or by circumstance. One person I know experienced the sudden influx of brilliant white light when he was stranded penniless in India. He was starving and destitute, with no way of obtaining help from his family back home in America. It came upon him suddenly in the most unlikely of circumstances, not sitting in lotus position at a guru’s feet.
Others have experienced it as a result of the laying on of hands by a teacher who spoke the Word of Power, commanding the light to enter and fill the student’s body. It can happen in various ways, but the results are always the same — the direct, unmistakable experience of light within one’s body. Whether it happens in that moment or at some point in the future, it happens.
Some experience the Illumination Event in subtler ways. It might not be a profound experience of visible light. It might be an overwhelming feeling. But this can be the result of having experienced the light all throughout their lives and not knowing that it was anything exceptional. Because of its familiarity and their body’s lack of resistance to spiritual energy, their spine doesn’t light up like a Christmas tree. Instead, a sudden feeling of clarity and “lightness” comes over them. But no matter how it happens, their lives are never the same after the experience.
Illumination is real. It IS a distinct experience. When it happens, you will know it, believe me. It does no good to downplay it or to misconstrue it as an insight or greater understanding. When someone says, “I saw the light,” they are usually describing an “aha” moment, not the ignition of the Life Force made visible within their consciousness. That is not an aha moment. It is an event, one that changes you forever.