Enlightened humans are often described as being consistently kind and compassionate, and are most admired for their total commitment to goodness. They are often described as calm. In fact, they are masters of calmness with the ability to achieve serenity even during the most difficult and stressful of events. They exhibit such a constancy of strength, grace, and inner peace that they are often considered spiritual masters.
Those individuals achieving enlightenment are consistently described as having powerful intelligence and possessing great knowing. They are considered the wisest of the wise. They appear to have stabilized in the highest level of human consciousness.
Some humans seek enlightenment directly by making it their primary conscious goal in life. One of the best examples of this was Siddhartha Gautama, who became known as the Buddha.
Other humans seek enlightenment indirectly as an unintended side effect of their hearing and successfully responding to their personal call. These individuals feel called to fulfill some unique and special purpose during their life on Earth. Some hear their call as a ‘message from God.’ Some of these seekers of enlightenment went on to organize religions. More often, religions, based on their teachings, were organized after their deaths by their followers. Sometimes, their followers considered these ‘messengers of God’ to be supernatural—incarnated Gods come to Earth on a holy mission. However, most humans seeking enlightenment in response to a call do not hear that call as a ‘message from God.’
Mohandas Gandhi sought enlightenment when he responded to his personal call. He felt called to liberate his country from domination by the British Empire. Gandhi innovated the strategy of nonviolent social resistance. His employment of this strategy over several decades won India her independence. Gandhi expressed his understanding of this pathway towards enlightenment when he taught: “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
Abraham Lincoln, Florence Nightingale, Albert Schweitzer, and Martin Luther King chose to be the changes they wanted to see in the world, and they realized enlightenment as a side effect of their responding to their personal calls. They felt called to a higher purpose—called to deliver a unique and special gift to their community. And just as enlightenment can never be fully achieved, a life of service can never be fully completed.
When individuals discover their unique and special purpose for living on the Earth—when they live in their calling—when they follow their hearts—when they live an inspired life, then the door opens to the process of their own personal enlightening.
Enlightenment is a unique form of human behavior, which I have been studying for the past several years. Today’s author is one of my favorite enlightenment teachers. This essay is re-posted from his website.
Recently people have been asking me what I mean by the phrase, “Answering the Call,” which I have been talking about so often during my talks about the democratization of enlightenment teachings in these past years. So when I woke up this morning, before I was fully awake, I jotted down a couple of words on this topic. …
Once you understand that your uniqueness is not a historical accident but an intentional expression of essence, then you realize that enlightenment is a genuine option for every human being. Including You. When you realize that your Unique Self is the God having a You experience, everything in your experience of your life changes.
Once you understand that your uniqueness is not the haphazard result of your cultural social or psychological conditioning, but all of these are necessary conditions for the emergence of the personal face of essence which is You, your essential experience of your life transforms. You move from a desperate need to escape your life to the radical embrace of your life.
When this happens, fate is transformed to destiny. Desperation becomes celebration. Grasping becomes purposeful action and resignation becomes activism. The contracted smallness of your frightened suffering self becomes expanded joyful realization of Your Unique Self. At such times, the irreducible human uniqueness of every human being is the invitation to enlightenment. For the full and authentic expression of your uniqueness living in the world as God’s verb, that is, essence living in you, as you and through you, is the essence of enlightenment.
It is from this place that you “Answer the Call.” It is from this place that you give the world your desperately needed “Unique Gifts,” those endowments that derive from your Unique Self. This is what I mean when I talk about Unique Self enlightenment. Enlightenment
Unique Self enlightenment is a genuine possibility and therefore responsibility for every human being. For there is no separation in essence. Every unique expression of essence is part of the seamless coat of the universe. Seamless but not featureless. Failure to clarify the contours of your Unique Self is not a failure of the contracted ego but a failure to love God. For to love God is to let God see through your eyes. Through the unique perspective of essence which is You.
Realizing Your Unique Self and giving your Unique Gifts is the evolution of love which is the evolution of God upon which the future of God depends. There are two key steps involved.
Firstly, you clarify your realization to know that you are not a separate self but a True Self, inseparable from the All.
Secondly, you realize that your True Self has a Unique Perspective. True Self + Perspective = Unique Self. Your Unique Self is able to address a Unique Need that can be addressed by no one else in the world that ever was, is or will be other then you. No one has the capacity to address this unique need in that the way that you are able to do. This is your Unique Gift.
In sum, your obligation and joy in being alive is to clarify your Unique Perspective, realize your Unique Self and give your Unique Gift. This is how you Answer the Call. Transforming your awareness of self to unique Self-consciousness is the change in your life which changes everything.
Democratization of enlightenment therefore does not mean that everyone is enlightened but rather that a full expression of authentic unique essence is a genuine possibility and therefore a genuine delighted obligation for every living being. In other words, it is the joy and responsibility of Answering the Call.