Each of us has experienced events that have unsettled us, emotionally and physiologically. These events not only break our sense of peace, but often cause us to question our lives, and the meaning behind our own existence.
The path of spiritual evolution empowers each seeker to move beyond these unsettling experiences, by attaining true inner peace through reaching their essence.
Our own supply of ‘water’
In ancient times, when an enemy wanted to conquer a city, it would first surround the city and then cut its water supply, so that the occupants would panic and open the city’s gate. However, those who had their own well didn’t panic, as they had access to their own supply of water.
For all of us, the ‘enemy at the gate’ is all the uncertainties and troubles we face in our lives, and the ‘well’ is the inner eternal fountain we possess within our hearts. Spiritual empowerment is attained when a seeker has connected with their essence, and is able to tap (at will) into their own eternal fountain, in order to maintain their sense of peace and surf the waves of emotional storms that often cause some people to sink.
This is the true meaning of spiritual empowerment and inner peace.
When we develop our inner fountain, we are no longer obsessed with the world of forms, as we gain access to the universal consciousness, which is the Reality behind all forms. We no longer live in a world of illusions, but become truly awake and enlightened, and eventually become a master of the emotions and ego.
However, just as we need to dig deep to create a well, we must also delve deep within, and traverse the multiple layers of consciousness that constitute what we refer to as “I.”
In this journey, we also attain substantial answers to three existential questions that all of us have tried to answer, at one time or another, throughout our lives. These questions are: Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here?
How we try to answer these questions will ultimately define our destiny. Even if we choose not to answer them, we will have also made a choice that will define our destiny.
Those who have attained their own personal answers to these three questions are often regarded as having achieved the status of complete self-awareness. So, in some sense, spiritual empowerment is nothing more than the state of complete self-awareness. The gateway to reaching this state is our heart, and establishing a one-to-one connection to the consciousness that gave us life.
Such a connection is perhaps best explained by the following ancient story from the tales of Mullah Nassr Eddin, full of allegory and symbolism, in which a man calls on a sage’s house, wanting to borrow a rope.
The sage, in response, says, “You cannot have it!”
The man, who happens to see the rope resting idly at the side of the sage’s garden, asks in a baffled tone, “Why not?”
The sage smiles and replies, “Because it is in use.”
In response, the man scratches his head, and in a puzzled tone, retorts, “But I can see it just lying there, on the ground!”
The sage grins, and counters, “That’s right: that’s its use!”
The man, who is totally stumped by the sage’s response, in a bewildered tone, asks, “How long will it stay in use like that?”
The sage chuckles, responding, “Until such a time as I feel that I want to lend it!”
The rope, in this story, is the symbol for the connection that the sage has developed, through years of spiritual discipline, to the Universal Consciousness. It’s a personal connection that he cannot share with anyone, but instead, he can show others how to develop their own connection.
Yet, as this connection has a metaphysical element, its use in the everyday life of the sage is not visible to a non-spiritual seeker. That is why the man wrongly assumes that the rope is not in use. So, even though the man is in search of such a connection, he wrongly assumes he can borrow another’s connection, and thus, asks the wrong question of the sage.
The right question would have been to ask the sage how he had come into the possession of such a rope.
Everyone travels the road on their own
In seeking such a connection, it is not enough for us to simply seek it. We need to find a person who has developed such a connection for themselves, and is thus able to teach another the same process.
This path has a beginning, but no end, and it starts and ends within us! A teacher, on this path, is only there to show a person how to walk the path, and guide the seeker away from hazards on the way. Everyone travels the road on their own!
On the path of substantial evolution of body and soul, the spiritual discipline enables each of us to reach our goal of self-awareness by creating such a rope within ourselves. This process transcends religion and belief systems, as it focuses the seeker’s attention on one of the key things, we all, as humans, have in common: our heart and the unlimited potential it holds.
This rope is nothing more than a heart’s connection between an individual consciousness and the Universal Consciousness. The person’s spiritual and physical aptitudes become connected to this consciousness, and are empowered by this Reality. They are in service of this Reality, through serving humanity.
It is through such a connection that each person gains their own individual answers to the above existential questions, and becomes empowered through the answers, as well as through the guidance they receive from their own personal connection.
For each of us to become empowered, we all need to ask ourselves the following two questions: Do we possess such a rope? And are all our aptitudes powered by such a connection? If the answer to either question is no, then we need to embark on finding a person like the guide in the story, and then ask the guide to teach us the method that creates such a connection.
For when we do, we will have, in effect, started on the path of individual enlightenment in a step-by-step manner, through the spiritual empowerment of our inner capacities!
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