I read somewhere that it might be useful to write down my expectations of what the so-called enlightened state would be like. I wasn’t sure how useful it would actually be, until I started focusing on it, that is.
So here is what I can only assume is a partial list of what I expected when, after so many years of searching, I finally reached the enlightened state:
My life would be forever peaceful;
I would be in a perpetual state of bliss, calmness, equanimity and love;
I would no longer desire anything outside of my present experience – in other words, I would be beyond desire;
My physical health would no longer be an issue, either because my health would become perfect, or I would no longer be disturbed by its imperfection;
I would grok the nature of existence, as life’s mammoth list of mysteries would dissolve in an explosion of deep understanding;
The world would become a better place, as the reality I am projecting would become clearer, more pure, more peaceful, non-violent;
I would directly perceive the true nature of reality, down to the very movement of atomic particles;
My personal issues would either disappear or become a source of amusement;
I would be available to gift my sage advice to all those who might benefit from it (uh oh, sarcasm is starting to leak in here as the list grows);
I would be totally OK with anything that might occur in my life or the life of the world, as my understanding of all occurrences would be complete;
Fear of death would vanish, as I would possess a full understanding of its meaning;
Remember, this is only a partial list, and if I sat here long enough, I’m sure more expectations would make themselves known. Therefore, I reserve the right to add to this list from time to time.
Did you notice the one common element in all those expectations? They are all happening to an “I.” What a huge disappointment it is to discover that I can’t find that “I” when I look for it! Could it be that this “I” doesn’t even exist, that it is just a thought and nothing more, that the illusion of its existence is simply evidence of deep conditioning?
This therefore renders every one of those expectations null and void, not to mention pretty humorous. I never realized until yesterday the full extent of this list, and as I said, I’m sure more items will emerge.
Actually, change that word, “disappointment,” to “release.” The mythical “I” might be disappointed, but the feeling being experienced right now is one of having shed 50 pounds of sludge from my being.
It reminds me of the definition of “expectations” that I heard some years ago: “Expectations are preconceived resentments.” I have yet to find any evidence of that definition being in any way untrue.