Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretence. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true. -Adyashanti

This is a chapter I wanted to include because I do recognize there is a stage beyond seeing and understanding the dream we are creating. This stage arises when we simply do not need to see the dream anymore, nor feed any illusion. We may have no need to create a story, be it one of conquest, one of disappointment, or one of anything else. Because we do not need the dream anymore, we likewise do not need the dream dictionary and all of the consciousness of labels and definitions (including labels and definitions of various states of ‘dis-ease’) that we tend to collectively and unconsciously take on, believe in and live by. There is no need for earth feng shui anymore either, because we have learned enough about our illusions to know why and how they didn’t serve us in the end. Our story at this stage is merely of being the lotus, living in the now, and being One with All That Is.

Because we know what our true nature is as the lotus, we no longer need the fruits and symbols of the world to guide us concerning all the ways we sought love and our reflection outside of ourselves through becoming a slave to what pollutes the collective mind and our own. If we still wish to engage in the dream of life, we can do so without attachment to it. We can become lucid within the dream rather than carried haphazardly by its flow. Furthermore, if we should get lost in a current of consciousness/dreaming from time to time, we know how to release ourselves and come back to what is real and pure when we need to.

Ultimately, nothing I present in this book is really any new truth to learn. This truth has always been present in various philosophies, religious texts, and even A Course in Miracles. However, as I stated in the first chapter, I did notice that I could not completely grasp these philosophies the way they were presented, until I was willing to give up a need to conform to current lifestyles.

The Importance of All the Steps

Those who imagine truth in untruth and see untruth in truth never arrive at truth but follow vain desires. Those who know truth as truth and untruth as untruth arrive at truth and follow true desires. -Siddhartha Gautama Buddha

The truth is that most of us will not be able to surrender our current lifestyles and mentalities in one step. While I have heard various individuals claim that we can bring about the greatest change if we focus primarily on the self, I have a problem with this philosophy because I have lived it. I find it keeps us stuck in a loop of suffering and unconsciousness that we can never get out of. This is largely because we cannot change what our egos keep us unaware of in ourselves. And, for those who are ready, being able to see past all of the forms of conditioning we have received will likely require being able to look at the world in a new way, free of blindly conforming to it.

Enlightenment needs to come first. And, while enlightenment always starts in the self, part of this process comes from being able to see the big picture as well, concerning the world and what is out of alignment. Until we can properly form a perception of what is going on without, we will not be able to properly form a perception of what is going on within. We will not be able to understand why we keep repeating the same struggles in the same ways.

One reason that I wrote this book—apart from being asked to—was to reach out to others who might feel as confused as I did about how to separate the spiritual reality they wish to honor as truth from various rules of living (which stem from collective illusions that confine us). What I learned for myself was that without some form of middle step, we may end up trying to be the lotus and the muddy pond together. We thus mistake mud for something that contains some version of truth and purity within it, instead of seeing mud for simply what it is: mud.

In the same theme, until we are given tools and steps to help us understand the ways we are being unloving, we cannot truly know love. So, it makes sense that if a philosophy is about love, it is not going to advocate a lack of awareness of cruelty; whether it is to self, to others, or to the world. It will, instead, give us steps that help us to identify where and why love is lacking. A philosophy about love ultimately teaches the effects of our choices; which, unless advised that more than one choice is available, it will be difficult for us to turn away from what we have been conditioned to be a part of, to initiate a movement toward new ways of living/being that are friendlier. This need not require that we live in denial of where we have acted out in unhealthy ways our feelings of self-loathing, separateness and emptiness. Instead, through fully facing what we have denied, compassion can be extended.

This is why I believe that while ancient masters such as Buddha and Christ were focused upon love they still educated others concerning what is the effect of making an alternative choice, i.e. they discussed evil, Mara, hell, etc. One must also take into account that words and teachings can be misconstrued through being written down, edited and translated. Even my own copy editor in places changed my message through rewording sentences. Sometimes a ‘not’ was added where she felt I was trying to express an opposite contention. What I was suggesting was too radical to her thinking to believe I intended to be that radical.

Even without teachings being misconstrued in these ways, many individuals could perceive certain instruction as full of inborn contradictions. For example, are we the essence of love and created in the image of God, or are we sinful? The answer requires understanding we live in a multidimensional reality.

I tend to believe we are part of what I have seen termed as a Luciferian Experiment, i.e. a false light experiment. It makes sense to me that we have for many lifetimes incarnated into a dream reality where we are unable to see the true light of who we are. We have willingly lost ourselves in darkness and false light. The path seems to be to find a way to awaken to such falseness in order to better perceive the Truth.

In other words, I believe that we live in a dimension where we exist as holiness within unholy living; living that does not necessarily reflect the pure and perfect truth and beauty that we are. Hence, we can reflect both what is good—through aligning with Spirit, and what is evil—through losing our Self through succumbing to various ‘temptations’ of the ‘flesh’. The latter only pertains to the story we tell. As I stated elsewhere, if you look at the word live and read it backwards, what does it spell? Evil. So, to me, evil merely spells the choice to turn ones back on the One life and the miracle/spirit it contains to favor the worship of what is lifeless, i.e. what is lived spelled backwards (the personification of what is anti-life). So, the choice that our masters have ultimately presented to us has always been to choose which version of reality to primarily serve: the real one or the one that only appears real.

Ascension as an Outcome Versus Ascension as a State of Mind

There is a great deal of discussion on the planet right now about a process called ‘ascension’ where you rise above your physical forms. As much as you are being called to physically ascend your material reality, you are also being called to emotionally and intellectually ascend it as well. Start to look at your concepts of materialism, consumerism and ownership. Dear ones, you do not need to struggle so much in an attempt to own, protect, possess and have so much. In truth, most of what you would label as your possessions does not even truly belong to you. Such ownership ideas are based in illusion. Which, if you can begin to shift your focus toward seeing the world in nonpossessive ways, it will open your heart to portals of love in which everything around you becomes filled with the energy of cooperation, connectedness and Truth… – Mat

I believe that ascension consciousness is part of the path toward releasing the need for dreaming and creating a new mantra in life. However, I feel the way society views ascension is riddled with inconsistencies and confusion; which as I explained in chapter 1, this is largely due to our ego and being philosophically split.

Part of our dilemma is that people within the new age community are focused on the topic of ascension without really knowing what it is about. Everyone is saying something different. For this reason, I prefer to simply live my life in the truth I am creating in the present moment.

What do I mean by this?

With ascension, I try not to focus on the outcome of whether or not we will or will not ‘ascend,’ but rather on how to have an ‘ascension consciousness.’ In order to do this, I define for myself what is logical that ascension entails; which, to me it seems logical that it would entail the release of both our preoccupation with flesh and our attachment to forms. This is what ascension is after all, is it not? Whether we enter a new dimension, are taken up into heaven by Jesus, taken into space ships by E.T.’s, enter a non-physical dimension, or stay on earth to create a new world, there is something about the word ‘ascension’ and the consistent thread running through all the ways and manners it is being discussed which suggests that it will involve leaving certain facets of our physical world behind.

Also, when you think about who first taught us ascension, it was individuals like Christ, Buddha and others who taught how to release our attachments and preoccupation with form.

In the end, I tend to feel ascension is a process that occurs as we keep separating ourselves—our lotus nature—from what we are not—our attachments. We cannot take our attachments, money, wealth, and other things with us when we ascend. These things have no life-force energy. Why chase after them? Why not make our ascension process one in which we join with Earth’s life-force energy, in celebration of her innate holiness and our own holiness as a part of the same Creation?

Then I heard a voice from heaven saying to me, “Write: ‘Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.’” “Yes,” says the Spirit, “that they may rest from their labors, and their works follow them.” -Revelations 14:13, NKJV

Unity Consciousness

Asking my guides if there is any other information on this topic to pass on regarding releasing our need for dreaming and creating a new mantra for life, I hear the word unity. Then, what becomes revealed to me is a beautiful vision. In this vision, I am looking up at the stars on a clear night. I am reminded that each star is a sun; each radiates its own light.

Then, I am shown a vision of the Milky Way. I am asked to notice how it almost acts as one light. From a distance, the stars form a beautiful swirl of light. Each star is part of what creates the picture of the Milky Way and the light it radiates.
Then, this vision is related back to humankind with the message that we are each a sun/son and a star in our own right.

Notice how our lives our guided by the workings of the universe, external stars, planets, etc. We love to read about astrology and our horoscopes. In this ancient science and our myths of Gods, we become tied to the planets and heavenly bodies in some way. The stories of our lives, and those of the Gods, take on the personalities of the planets and their interplay.

Journeying in to our bodies and the way they operate, we can even relate this interplay to the functions of our cells, hormones, proteins and other elements; which they seem to be guided by a higher intelligence that goes beyond our consciousness. Also, consider that within us are meridians, chakras, neurotransmitters, synapses, and other miraculous interplays of an intelligent energy cosmos. Even within molecules are atoms that behave a certain way, and within atoms are electrons, protons, neutrons, and a nucleus, all of which are alive with energy and movement. Everything that is infused with life seems to interplay in a way that conveys the mechanisms of a cohesive, meaningful and quiet intelligence. We are all part of a that unified intelligence. We are all part of the same miracle in many different ways, from the deepest levels of our soul to the tangible and living.

In this way, unity consciousness can be viewed as a process of divine recognition, worship and praise that goes beyond the egoic concerns of the limited self. Understanding unity consciousness helps one to attain miracle consciousness. After all, how can we create miracles in the ways Jesus did if we have lost grasp of the miracle that each of us is and what life is a part of?

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” -Matthew 17:20, NIV

In western society, this miracle gets lost in lifestyles that many of us feel trapped in, and which we feel we cannot change. For some, things seem so hopeless that their only resort is to practice defeatism. However, there are forms of societies that are emerging, seeking ways to live more in alignment with these ideals without necessarily joining or conforming to any religion, cult or sect. Not that religion is right or wrong, but some of us may wish to transcend beyond the definitions and rituals that may be asked of followers. I describe some of these emerging societies in the following section.

Intentional Communities

For the many out there who do not know what intentional communities are, they are communities that have arisen that allow the individuals within them to live in more alignment with their spiritual and ecological intentions. They are places to live where each member receives or buys a portion of the land, and is expected to cooperate and share in the various responsibilities within the community. In this way, such communities foster attitudes of cooperation and sharing. Many of these communities also aspire toward ecologically friendly living and the use of off-grid power sources (e.g. solar power and wind power).

While many of them currently require that members buy a piece of the land or make a financial contribution, I believe that in the future these types of communities could become merchantless and operate solely on a system of barter, trade and cooperation.

The other added benefit to intentional communities is that they offer more protection if the economy should collapse or if power grids should fail.

All in all, these types of communities can help many of us to safely let go of certain patterns of living in order to allow our lives to be lived in more freedom and service to Spirit. Intentional communities seem to offer many who find a home within them a middle step between our current lifestyles and the types of lifestyles that can be part of what heals the world.

To find out more, you can visit www.ic.org.

Finding a New Mantra for Life

What do I mean when I say we can ‘find a new mantra for life?’ Once we realize how many illusions we have made real, we begin to shake off what was never the truth or a part of us. We shake off all the labels and beliefs we so easily and unconsciously conformed to before. We can then allow any inner void we feel within us to be filled with the truth of who we are. This replacement of what is untruth (that we are what we manifest in the muddy pond) with what is truth (that we are the pure lotus) becomes our new mantra; a mantra which effectively affirms, in both mind and deeds, “I am the pure lotus, not what I create within a muddy pond.”

This new mantra—this choosing a new identity for who we are—when affirmed on a consistent basis, can then help us hold a new vibration while keeping us from falling back into the polluted pond again. In essence, we allow ourselves to more fully understand that the pond in its most pristine state forms the universe and the stars of what we are a part of. We also understand that the thoughts and beliefs that form the mud and slime do not represent the true seed that the lotus originally sprouted from.

It is also important to note, because each of us is gifted with our own free will, we have a choice of what type of mantra we wish to live by and allow to define us. We also have the free will to come to know and to live the truth of who we are in our own timing and way.

As I’ve stated elsewhere, it is not necessary to force any process. Even A Course in Miracles does not wish the shifting of the mind to be forced. I do not think it even advises that the mind can be shifted this way. I am of the same belief. In fact, there are a multitude of exercises in the back of the book of A Course in Miracles which readers are instructed to work on without the application of mental manipulation or force. Rather, the purpose is to have the mind lightly touch upon certain realizations and affirmations, thus allowing the mind to become gently conditioned to accept them.

Another technique that can help us to let go of force and perfectionism is to learn to view any unconsciousness within the world as a dream in which we can become more lucid. In dreaming, no one is better than or less than. Dreaming is dreaming, until we do not need to dream so much anymore (or take them so seriously). Also, once our egoic striving is disengaged from the neediness within the world, then we may find we no longer need to take as many middle steps. We can be released from any need to dream at all; that is, we will not need to have a life purpose that is focused upon manifestation and storytelling.

As an example from my own life, in 2005 I would have a dream in which a cord with a crystal on the end was spinning around my body (in the same manner as one would use a pendulum to clear blocks or energies21 ). There was an awareness that as the crystal on the cord was rotating around my body, it was sweeping my energy field in a way to clear all consciousness that I ascribed to or had taken on. Thus, as it continued to spin around me, it was purifying me of all beliefs, all labels, all consciousness of the world and all consciousness of my own, as well. In the dream this allowed me a sense of purity and stillness. I still use this as a waking visualization to help me focus on a state of purity that allows me to drop the dream of life and anything external.

In learning to drop our external world (the pond), we may even find we wish to retreat from the world for a time. This may include retreating from taking courses and reading so many books so that the mind is not being continually bombarded by worldly thoughts and consciousness. After all, most of the self-help books and material out there really deal with how to cope with the philosophical split we keep maintained (discussed in chapter 1). Not only that, but they seek to teach us how to continue living that way. So, when you are ready to give up such a quest, you will not need certain kinds of books or knowledge anymore.

Though, again, it is not about forcing ourselves out of any state of being, nor about skipping middle steps. In fact, without feeling a need to skip steps, we can then shift between steps. What do I mean by this? I mean that we do not need to be all or nothing. As we shift between steps we can practice the art of observation rather than attachment. We can use the increased awareness that results from this process to deprogram ourselves from various untruths we have been taught to believe.

Mantras, A Course in Miracles, worship, devotion, meditation, sounds, music, dance, appreciating nature, drumming, and breath work are all beautiful practices that can assist in the process toward creating a new perception of ourselves and showing us a way in which life can be lived more gracefully. In fact, it may help to begin to see life and nature as the expression of such things, i.e. seeing life as a meditation, a prayer, a poem, a melody, a dance, etc.

We can only find what works best for us through our own self-examination. What works best for one person may not be another person’s cup of tea.

In the end, finding a new mantra is merely about finding a self-definition that needs nothing worldly (of the muddy pond) to support it. This does not mean we are never in the world; it only means that we take time to know ourselves apart from it. It is the practice of the art of innocence, presence, and simplicity.

To help you along this path, if you would like to explore the many lessons in A Course In Miracles, the entire course can be found free and online at www.courseinmiracles.com.

[21] For more information on what I mean by using a pendulum to clearing blocks or energies see http://www.newspiritservices.com/pendulum.html

Read Chapter 11 – Part 2

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Mandy Peterson is a psychic visionary, empath, channel and EFT Practitioner. She is the author of the book “I Am the Lotus, Not the Muddy Pond,” and a regular columnist for the metaphysical magazine, Bellesprit. As an empathic healer and reader, Mandy works 1-to-1 with clients, helping them to achieve clarity, peace and balance. For more information, see the “About” page.