The mind does a good job at conceptualizing what enlightenment looks like or even the process of the days leading up to the event horizon within the self. Since the dawning of the great awakening of human consciousness there have been countless stories passed down from those who have realized themselves. They are nice stories to read, but that is exactly what they are, stories. Someone else’s experiences. The wisdom has and continues to provide some guidance for those who are seeking, but nothing will prepare one for their own personal realization, or their very own “21 days of hell”. That fortnight plus some doesn’t just come once. The first time around one will learn and remember to make friends with this period of detoxification and integration going forward. What are the 21 days of hell? Le me explain…
When one has sought out all that can be learned from the outside world; when one has surrendered into the opening of the inner world without shutting down or closing off to the self- the first experience of this intense period of detox begins. At this point it is understood that the journey of enlightenment is not about the fulfillment of joy & happiness and coming into the final product or version of the self. It is understood there is no more working it out or fixing the self. This is the ultimate surrender. But still, nothing can prepare one for this detox.
During the first few days and nights the purging begins- profuse sweating, aches & pains, a sort of flu that is not the flu and the only thing that can be done is fully embrace the experience with all the bodies (mental, emotional, physical) out of balance. All the stored wisdom comes out now, and this too shall pass is now thoroughly understood. Nothing outside the self will help. There are no angels, guides, or ancestors that are going to come to the rescue, no superman, and certainly no God. No one, but simply YOU. Now the loneliness comes creeping up. No one is going to understand your craziness. Now you hear voices or the voice in your head (that was always only in your head) is no longer familiar. You think you are going crazy, and in a sense you are. That’s the good news. You have finally accepted that you have always been enlightened, you merely chose not to realize until now. This is the point of no return.
Day after day you continue to experience an intense mental, emotional, and physical breakdown with all its hellish pleasures along with what I call “cracking open”. This step in the realization process is similar to the frying of an egg. Once the egg has left its shell it can no longer be placed back into the shell ever again. So now you have intense mental, emotional, and physical pain, you are losing your mind, you have no one to talk to, and you are completely aware there is no going back to how it was before. What to do? You know that you know. Surrender.
There is no doctor, no prescriptions, no pleasure, nothing outside to help you now. So you use your tools. You take that good deep breath in and let it out on the exhale, ahhhhh. Your breath is now your best friend.
The experience eventually passes with time and you feel you can begin to move forward again. You will recognize it when it finally comes to pass, but know that the experience will come again, bye and bye. But the next time, you will know what is happening. You will be fully conscious. The 21 days of hell or the full thrust forward into self realization will only come once. After that, you will consciously call in the experience when needed. It will no longer be known as a living hell, but merely a period of detox and expansion. This my friend will continue for eternity.
Many blessings on your journey into the darkness and the lightness of all that you are!
(I honor you for the journey, no matter where you are)
Blog/Musings by Muriel Shickman
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