Natural Wakefulness - The Wisdom We Were Born With

Q: What happens when someone reaches enlightenment, liberation, realization? A lot of people talk about it, but they don’t define it.

A: Since writing “Instant Presence” quite a few people have asked me the same question “What has happened”?

One of the main things that has actually happened is that I have lost interest in continually talking about, thinking about, or in any way making spirituality a central aspect of my life.

When you learn to walk, you just walk! There’s no need to keep talking about it. You just walk… And when you stop talking, you discover that you can walk without having to think about it all the time. This frees up so much energy for other things in life!

At the same time, because I live with others, who sometimes ask questions, I notice that whenever topics arise, there are answers as a natural part of the flow. But when it is done it is finished.

Unless the question is there, there is no answer. There’s nothing to say and you just be what you are, naturally, and just get on with living life as it is.

A: Some teachers say that we need practice and others that we do not because we are already awake...

A: If our nature was not already free, that would imply we could become enlightened only after we practiced but if it’s possible to gain enlightenment, then it’s possible to lose it as well.

Enlightenment is not an escape from form. Rather form is the “apparent” veiling of Enlightenment. This realization leads to the understanding that “there is nothing to do and no-one to do it” but when this is directly realized, not just intellectually understood, it becomes our own unshakable knowledge, where every experience is only the knowing of Consciousness knowing itself. Then we no longer see a division between duality and transcendence.

The natural consequence of awakened beingness is a clear and simple expression of awareness that never fixates in any realm of experience. If we find ourselves in a state where something is excluded, that state, however amazing it is, is still a dualistic state.

Consider an empty room, which is naturally spacious. When we add furniture in the room the space is not affected. Whether the room is empty or cluttered and messy, the natural spaciousness will not be affected. Our nature is also naturally spacious. Even when we get caught up in our illusions, our true nature is not affected. We are already free.

As I see it, practice is not about producing enlightenment.

“Is meditation then useless? -you might wonder. No, not at all, because meditation helps clean up and organize the “furniture” in the “room.” First by detaching from our thoughts, we remove the furniture. The emptiness of the room allows us to notice, maybe for the first time in our lives, the spaciousness in the room.

At this point do we leave the room empty? No, not at all.

We reintroduce the furniture and arrange it any way we want— not for ourselves but for the benefit of others in the room.

Enza Vita is co-editor of InnerSelf Newspaper and founder and director of the MahaShanti Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to spiritual awakening. Enza is also the author of the book Instant Presence - Allow Natural Meditation to Happen, published by Watkins. For more information, visit or connect with Enza through her Facebook page.