This article by John-Roger was first published in The Movement Newspaper, November 1977.
How do you ever reach the level above you if the mechanism and the tools you have present cannot see above and so cannot get you there? There are Light bearers, way showers, who come to show you the vision of enlightenment, the vision of Soul transcendence. – John-Roger
How do you receive enlightenment? How does it happen? Many ways. Do you get it through yourself? Yes. Do you be it by yourself? Always. What if you don’t know where to get it? Those who are enlightened can point the way. Their great value is that they can be way showers–not teachers, way showers.
One thing that can become discouraging and disturbing is that people who are moving towards enlightenment, but who are not yet there, may get the “holy man’s disease,” which is: “My enlightenment is better than yours.” And, really, how can that be judged? Is fifty to ninety doing well? Thirty to forty just making it? I don’t think it can be graded that way. If it could, it might make some people feel very secure to think that they could get the right vocabulary terms and ensure that they’d have God in their corner. “Turn to page thirty-two… that’s God.” It doesn’t happen that way at all.
When you come to the realization, inwardly, that you need to find God, how do you go about that? You find Him through yourself. You find Him by yourself. People who are following Jesus may say, “Jesus will save you.” I’m not going to argue, but who has to make the first step? You have to make that first step towards your own salvation. You have to make the commitment and let Jesus save you. In essence, that is saving yourself. You have to always assume responsibility to yourself.
People will say that their gurus will save them. But no guru, no teacher will work with you towards enlightenment unless you let him know that you are interested. So you go to a teacher and tell him that you are interested; you ask him to save you. He may say, “Okay,” but he will also say, “Then do these things I ask of you.” Jesus said, “Do these things.” All teachers say, “Do these things,” and they are all talking about the unity underlying all things. Every one of them will tell you that there is a cause and there are effects, that you are the cause and you are the effect, and that you can transcend the rigidness that your body seems to place upon you.
Those who are traveling the Surat Shabd Way know that we in MSIA deal with the Sound Current of God. That is our path. The Bible tells us that the Word (which is the Sound) was made flesh. Others call it the Logos. It doesn’t matter what the words are — it is this essence of God with which we are working.
We also work with the Light of God. But if you follow any path, and do not find the Love of God on that path, then leave it and seek out one that carries the Love. There must be Love of God and Love for God. There must be Love for the Light consciousness that comes through all people, for that is God. If you say you love one person but not another, you cannot say that you love God. You can have love for all, but prefer certain people close to you — and still love God. It is your responsibility to live in preferences and discernment.
When you discern your preference levels, you are not discriminating against the rest. That is not a play on words, either. That is an actuality. The life of preference is the life of discernment. You cannot establish preferences unless you have the ability to discern. And you cannot discern clearly unless you have some knowledge of the subject at hand. The physical body discerns physical bodies, and the basic selves discern other basic selves. Emotions can discern emotions, and the mind can discern the mind. The Soul discerns the Soul and everything below it. But the level you are on rarely discerns any level above it.
How do you ever reach the level above you if the mechanism and the tools you have present cannot see above and so cannot get you there? There are Light bearers, way showers, who come to show you the vision of enlightenment, the vision of Soul transcendence. You may not know their reality, and you may not be able to tell if they are phonies or frauds, but you can work their information anyway and see if it awakens you.
The challenge is present. Regardless of who tells you, regardless of whether or not you believe it, if you can work the information and bring your own awareness higher, you are moving towards enlightenment. You have to go to those levels of Spirit, however, to get this. You can’t go to a mathematics book to discern Spirit. (Actually, you could, if you understood that it is infinity that you are dealing with in all equations. If you stop short of that concept, you’re caught in numbers and figures, and that is not of Spirit.)
To discern Spirit, you must attune yourself to Spirit and to those who know Spirit. It is an eternal struggle, because on this level you have the body, emotions, mind, unconscious, and subconscious — all thrusting to bind the Soul to this level. The Soul, on this level, is the weakest element, which explains why we sometimes fall apart. Yet, that which is weakest on this level endures the longest. When you get up into Soul, the Soul becomes the strongest element. The rules change; the Soul wins. It will always win because it is the Soul that endures past all things. The Soul in the Soul realm is positive energy in a positive realm, and its strength cannot be matched. But, here, on earth, the Soul is positive energy in a negative realm, and the negative elements appear to have greater strength.
As long as you hold the illusions of the lower chakra centers, you will get caught up in them. This isn’t bad; it may be that the cause and effect with which you are dealing are going to hold you into the earth plane for a few more lessons, for a few more experiences. Don’t condemn your experiences. Love them. The key to breaking free is to love yourself and to love each experience that comes to you, whether it appears to be negative or positive. Love it all equally.
If someone comes up to you and says, “I don’t think you’re so smart,” love that person. He can’t do much in the face of pure love. You may not love what he’s doing or saying; you may not love his expression, but I think that somewhere inside of you, you can still love that person. You may love him far away from you. That’s fine. You have a right to select whom you have close to you. You can love people and not have them all in your front room. You can love them in their front rooms.
Being spiritual doesn’t mean that you have to be namby-pamby or weak. The spiritual path is not necessarily an easy one. It can be difficult. And it often is open game for every religionist, agnostic, atheist, and for all those who don’t fall into those categories. It takes great strength to walk the spiritual path in the truth and honesty of your own consciousness.
With greater spiritual awareness comes greater responsibility to Spirit, and this means to the Spirit everywhere. It is your responsibility to be true to the spiritual essence that you have discovered within. It is stated in all scripture — the Bible as well as the scriptures of the Eastern religions — that you let your Light shine among men and let your good works speak for you.
You have a responsibility to be loving. And often you can do that silently more effectively than you can do it verbally. You are loving in whatever situation you find yourself. Even a husband or wife have no right to hurt each other. They didn’t get married for that purpose. They were married to become a fortress, possibly to raise children, to become a family, to create a retreat from the world, so that they all can come back to that area to gain the strength necessary to go back out into the world, and learn to work with energy and to break conditioning that appears upon them. If you come home after a “hellish” day at work and get hell from your wife or husband, that is really hell. Then you don’t want to come home at all. It is your responsibility to be loving — not to let yourself be taken advantage of — but to be loving in all your relationships.
Love is the key to awakening to the Spirit within. Sometimes you don’t even know when you sleep. It takes discernment to recognize the level of our enlightenment and then to seek out those who can show you the next level. That part that is awake is the Soul. It never sleeps. It is in a constant state of pure awareness. The mind sleeps, the emotions sleep, the body sleeps. As you realize this, you wonder if you’re really as great as you sometimes think you are. You’re not great in the sense of ego involvement, but in the Soul you are far greater than you think you are. Thoughts cannot conceive the greatness of the Soul. So all you can do is let it go and say, “It is beyond my mental ability.” You can’t find the majesty of the Soul in science books or math books. You may not even be able to find it in spiritual books, but you may find a key that awakens something inside of you a little more than before.
Be with those people who are lifting towards Spirit. Let them share with you, but realize that each person’s “trip” each way, is special for that person. Don’t compare levels of what you call spirituality. Sit and listen and support each person with your love and your joy for them. And then move back to your own truth, to your own work, to your own beingness. Within you is the kingdom of God. You have the key. And as you awaken more fully to the consciousness of God, you find that there is no love or lover. There is only the Beloved.
If you find that you love God, you are separate from God. If you find God loving you, you are separate. But when you find that you are the Beloved, then you have become the path. You have become the Light, the Truth, the Way; and there is no separation. There is only the Beloved.
WATCH A VIDEO CLIP “WALKING THE PATH TO GOD” BY JOHN-ROGER