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Enlightenment Doesn’t Really Matter
Dwayne: Dear James, many, many thanks for taking time to answer my message! You were very right with the “subconscious resentment…” I had failed to realize how much I was taking full responsibility for all “results” and “doings.” But following your words, I went back to work and read again the related chapters in your book but at a slower pace, in a contemplative way.
And yes, as you said, “gratitude is the only appropriate attitude.” I almost cannot believe I wrote that stuff but after so many years of taking all these marvelous things for granted it is no wonder that it takes some time to get it. It is a little like being born again; to realize that I am typing these words but that it is not really me who is doing it because this body-mind-sense entity is just the self’s instrument, like the tongue speaking, the feet walking and the hands peeling potatoes.
I think it will still take a lot of training to live like this during all my waking time; I’ve read that after two years of practice I should be happy if 5% of “work” is non-desire-oriented, so in about 20 years I should be ready for self-knowledge. ☺ But who cares? To be free of the “doership” burden is already a great relief.
James: It shouldn’t be that hard once the knowledge “I am not the doer” is steady. In fact “I am not the doer” is enlightenment, assuming you know that the “I” is awareness. It won’t be Dwayne that is not the doer.
The gratitude comes naturally when the doer is out of the picture. And you needn’t really worry about the desire. It is natural – Isvara again – as long as it is “not opposed to dharma,” which can be construed to mean that gratitude is the nature of the jiva that knows it is not the doer. It feels great that it is off the hook as far as results are concerned and that Isvara is looking out for it. Wanting more/not wanting is the problem.
Dwayne: In the meantime I keep doing duties while focusing the attention on the self and discriminating subject/object as much as possible.
James: Perfect. Enlightenment doesn’t really matter insofar as it is in Isvara’s hands and all you get by it is the karma yoga attitude, relief from doership and perfect discrimination, so if you successfully cultivate this attitude and practice discrimination you won’t need enlightenment anyway. Nothing outside is going to change anyway. The wife and kids are still the wife and kids and, well – Bob’s your uncle.
Dwayne: That’s it for now, I just wanted to say a few words. I’ll be very grateful if I can contact you whenever I have a question or if the practice gets difficult.
James: Yes, indeed.
Dwayne: Many thanks to you again!