The basic things to reach enlightenment are really only half a dozen in number, aren’t they? The willingness to forgive, the realization of the limitations of the intellect, devotion to divinity, the respect for the sacred, one-pointedness or fixity of mind to transcend all obstacles, the willingness to be loving as a way of being in the world, rather than as an emotional give and take–I love you, now you love me… You only need to know about half a dozen things.
David R. Hawkins, M.D., Ph.D.,
The Way to God: The Nature of
Divinity vs. Religious Fallacy
Could it really be this simple? If we were to follow the half dozen suggestions given above, could we reach enlightenment? Yes. But looking again at the list it begins to seem a bit more daunting. The willingness to forgive? The willingness to be loving as a way of being in the world? That’s how we might expect to be after we’ve become enlightened. But before? As this limited human being, beset on all sides by the unfairness of the world and the selfishness of our fellows? How can we even begin to move in this direction?
We’re doing it right now, together. I am writing these words, this series of thoughts, and you are reading them. We are spending some of the precious moments of our life shining a light on the world of the spirit (devotion to divinity, respect for the sacred). We are opening ourselves to seeing things in a different way (realizing the limitations of the intellect). We can choose in each moment and in every situation to be willing to forgive (we don’t need to know how, we only need to become willing). We can choose with everyone we meet to be willing to love as a way of being in the world (again, it is the willingness alone we need to choose). And throughout our day we can choose, again and again, to see past our limitations and resistance to imagine a more whole, more joyful experience of life than we may be having in the moment. We can ask of divinity for Its help in this. We can ask for help in seeing the sacredness of all things.
We can choose in each moment to step beyond all obstacles and most especially the obstacle of our own thinking to see in each other only that which is lovable, to see in the world only that which is sacred, to identify in ourselves only with that part that is willing to be more alive than each day than we were the day before.
Today I will read this list of half a dozen things this morning and at noon and before dinner, and I will find the willingness to live out each part of it to the best of my ability.