I had a glimmer of enlightenment. A dot. And then another.
The first time it happened I was living on a tiny island off Bali. I had just finished a ten day silent retreat and was studying Buddhist wisdom and meditating all day.
Walking to breakfast one morning, I suddenly felt a wave of peacefulness wash over me and a feeling of love so intense it dwarfed any emotion I had felt in my life. At first it was directed to a hotel employee walking in front of me. I couldn't see who it was, and it didn't matter. A few other hotel guests were in my field of vision, and I felt a powerful sense of love towards them too, as if our hearts were connected in a deep, unspoken bond. When I looked up, I felt awestruck at the brightness of the green in the trees around me and the deep hues of violet and blue flowers that lined the walkway (that I had never noticed before). Suddenly I felt myself dissolving as an independent entity and merging with all the living things around me. I felt nothing but love and gratitude, for the flowers and plants and everyone alive in this moment.
It was a dot. A few weeks later I had another. Shinzen calls it a "spiritual orgasm." I get it :). Since then I've wondered what it would be like to merge the blissful feeling of those dots into a line of living with only love.
I haven't talked about this with almost anyone, ever in my life.
Yesterday I joined a retreat with Shinzen Young. And for some reason, for the first time I felt comfortable asking about this experience. Shinzen teaches about enlightenment in an approachable way and says we can all get there. He is a Buddhist scholar with a background in science who speaks clearly and crisply.
We're honored to host the party for Shinzen's book The Science of Enlightenment Tuesday at 7pm. This will replace our weekly Tuesday meditation and include a meditation guided by Shinzen.
If you have questions about enlightenment, about how to get closer, or even about your practice. I encourage you to join us Tuesday.
Click here to join Shinzen Young Tuesday