Thursday, September 10, 2009

Where Is One After Satori

After a satori or two, many think they are enlightened. Is that so? The Unitive Experience, which always comes unbidden, arrives like a tsunami with overflowing ecstasy, overpowering oneness, and explicit absolute authority. There is no desire, wish, or possibility of challenge.

Many a satori lasts for only seconds, yet in those seconds it is eternity which is known. It is eternity one knows. Sometimes the unitive effect lasts for days, and giving and receiving are the same word. One and another are not separate -- separate appearance, separate form, but not separate in reality.

Yet long or short, satori doesn't last. Does one or two of these make one enlightened? After one of these, does the ego come back and grab it, like a crown.

Are you now anointed? Does one place this experience in the ego's treasure chest and pronounce oneself, enlightened, teacher, knower?

And how does one live one's life when this satori, this experience dissipates? How does one live when the normal state returns? When in comparison, normal seems so much less. When normal has lost it's meaning. When it is pale in comparison, with no blood, no life, no truth.

It's like being an existentialist, yet knowing better. Like being in the wasteland, having tasted paradise. The taste of paradise, like a beacon, a lighthouse, known but not seen. There is nothing to grab.

Here and now, the field seems dull, slow, passable. But nothing in comparison to the taste. There is a waiting, a wondering. Why the taste? Why the knowing? One seems unnecessarily placed in the position of eating the cake and wanting it too. No middle ground. There was a taste, now only these dregs remain.

Untasted paradise leaves no measure for God. The existentialist may feel the hero. But when paradise has been tasted, there is a measure for God. Then what? This here, this now, so doesn't measure up.

Only trust remains. Trust in the unknown, trust in having known. Trust that Oneness is, though ungrasped. Only humility may reign, only submission, surrender, asking for revelation.


Anonymous said...

I've just started reading Jed McKenna's "Spiritual Enlightenment", and he mentions this problem - having Satori experiences vs. awakening. I'm not sure what to make of them, but I've heard it said many times, through different sources that that which can be experienced is not it. To experience still implies an experiencer. Who, or what is that?

Admittedly, I'm as lost as most everyone else, and I'm still trying to find my way, but I appreciate your posts on the matter. Are you seriously questioning this, or are you making a point?

Maury Lee said...

An answer to your excellent question deserved more than a comment, so I made a blog entry "What is Enlightenment," in an attempt to respond.

Thanks again for visiting my blog and asking questions that prompt me to answer my own questions.

Unknown said...

I believe to not be taken over by the ego after satori, one can choose either of two paths. Abandon the world of desires as a recluse atop a mountain awaiting enlightenment and ideally making the eternal choice after death, or diving into the game we call world, life etc. However it must be done with sincerity. The difference between before satori and after satori is now you know full well that people are your brothers and sisters. Cats, plants, they too are a part of you and you love them all, but at the same time at the end of the day you don't take it too seriously because now you know its just a game. If the stakes aren't high then its not worth playing. Please comment on this thought if you feel anyway about it.

Unknown said...

Well... yes this is a difficult moment. Knowing but not being anymore! After a Satori or that kind of experience nothing is the same. What was so importante before as job, money, girlfriend, frienship, family, success etc... doesn't make much sense anymore. We don't need nothing to be happy, happiness is already there, we are just a part of everything, what ever happends in our life is fine, this is what we discover in those moments and it's amazing, this is a profound truth! Then after a while this feeling tends to disapear and the "normality" comesback, and now what?! That was a few monthes ago now I feel I'm becoming a "seeker",meditating a lot, watching a lot of spirituls videos etc... as Branden commented, I've been taken over by the ego, "that was so amazing, I miss it, I want to be there again...". It's a bit difficult to deal with that duality, in one hand I know nothing realy matters, but this is only based on a remembrance, by the other hand what I'm really feeling at this moment is anxiety about the future (and other usual negatives thinkings). So this why I feel a bit stuck, do I keep seeking for somrthing I may never get? or just stop seeking as if nothing happends?

ed said...


This is why a Teacher is necessary.
To bring you back to earth.

There are some experiences that arise either in the context of meditation or
simply out of nowhere. The emotional overload can shatter you. Following that,
the perception of VAST space can keep you almost immobile for days. There is
the temptation to simply walk away from everything in your life since it is
intensely clear that no-thing matters.

This is where, in my view, a Teacher is critical.

The Zen advice is " Have you eaten? Then wash your bowl."

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi said this to someone in private and that person related the
comment. Maharishi: "Be practical in the world".