Contrary to popular belief, a Spiritual Awakening does not need to take multiple lifetimes. It can happen in the same amount of time it takes to snap your fingers.
Do you need to be a regular meditator? No. Must you be a student of the Holy Scriptures? No. Need you spend time in prayer? No. What is it that differentiates those who Awaken from those who have not Awakened yet? According to a teaching that is common to many sages and saints, it requires “ripeness,” like a piece of fruit ready to fall from its tree.
What makes someone “ripe?” I have often said that having a body on Earth is like attending a school. Most of us think school is where we are taught language, history, math, etc., but our spiritual lessons are about our ability to love and be loved, and our spiritual classroom includes everything we are able to experience with our physical senses. Our teachers exist in many forms, and our lessons teach us how to lovingly relate to them and to ourselves.
Every one of our Spiritual lessons has to do with choosing love over fear, hatred, greed, or some other negative attitude which suddenly appears within us. The more difficult it is for us to choose love over cowardice, denial, avoidance, self-depreciation, etc., the more impactful our learning becomes.
Our most difficult situations test us about what we have learned. If we respond to what life brings with caring and kindness for others (as well as for ourselves) we have learned the lesson, passed the test, and are ready to move on to the next level. If we respond with negative attitudes and behaviors to what life brings, we will need more lessons and tests before we are “sufficiently ripe enough” to “move on.”
A Spiritual Awakening is for those who have become humble and loving as a result of their spiritual education. If you care primarily about how others see you, what you can gain for yourself from others, and are not kind and caring towards others and yourself, you are not ready to graduate from Earth School. If you want to Awaken so you can feel like you are better than others, or want others to treat you special because you have attained some unique power, you are also not ready to Awaken. If you are telling yourself “I’m not good enough,” or “I cannot be happy until I have what my mind desires,” you are definitely not ready for the Advaita teachings.
BUT, if you are thinking about how you can make a difference in the world, or want to serve others in some meaningful way, you are RIPE, and the Advaita teachings will open your mind as well as your heart. Then you can let go of whatever you have realized to be false, so the inner peace and happiness of your True Self can become fully present as your way of BEING. This inner shift will seriously alter your current human experience – in no time at all.