What is Inner Freedom and Enlightenment?
“Inner freedom – or enlightenment – is to become that which you have always been. It is to find the only thing that has never been lost. It is to be that which cannot be described.”
The enlightened state cannot be described; it can only be experienced – just like you cannot describe the taste of an apple to a person who has never tasted an apple. The apple has to be tasted
When we describe enlightenment with words it is in the deep understanding that these words are mere road signs. Like the road sign saying “Copenhagen” is not Copenhagen. The road sign merely points out that there is a place called Copenhagen (the Enlightened state). Road signs are also useful when finding your way. This is why words from persons in the enlightened state can be powerful openings in your own enlightenment process. The unfortunate thing is that some people believe that the road signs ARE Copenhagen. They are stuck in intellectual insights and believe that these relative truths are Enlightenment.
Enlightenment is not to have a lot of spiritual insights. On the contrary many of these spiritual concepts can block the freedom state. Enlightenment is not clairvoyance, healing abilities or temporary experiences of light, angels and other dimensions. Enlightenment is not out-of-the-body experiences, to walk on water, telepathy or telekinesis. Enlightenment is not to have spiritual abilities – even though it can be a “side effect”.
Enlightenment is much more simple – and a thousand times more profound. Enlightenment is a fundamental shift from being “something” into just being. A shift from living in the mind to living in the heart. A shift from identifying with your personality to a permanent experience of being the Universe. A shift from being mortal to being immortal, from being limited to being infinite. A shift from being something thought-up to being alive. A shift from being a concept to being your true nature. A shift from being completely overflowed with thoughts and feelings to being pure awareness experiencing the thoughts and feelings. A shift from being in the world into being the world. Simply a shift back to your natural state.
In reality there is nothing extraordinary about it. It is your natural freedom. It is living free of the mind – not without the mind. It is being in full contact with Life – unconditionally. It is letting what comes come and letting what goes go. Or as the Zen monks say “chopping wood and carrying water”. It is the ability to declutch the mind and abide in the stillness.
Bruhn’s experience of the quantum leap
“Before I was a tree looking at the other trees in the forest. I often compared, evaluated, judged and condemned myself and the other trees. Even though I was aware of the projections it was a nightmare. As a tree I knew that there was something called the Forest but I had only in brief moments experienced to be that.
Suddenly it happened. The whole Forest filled me. The sense of being an individual tree vanished and I was the Forest. At first I thought it was one of these temporary experiences. But no, it didn’t change. I continued to be the Forest. Now I am the Forest looking at the Forest. It is an amazing experience in every sparkling now. I can still see the peculiar tree called Bruhn but I am no more this limited personality. I am free and infinitely grateful.
On March 6th 2004 in India I experienced a breakthrough in my consciousness leading to a permanent state of inner freedom. Some call this state enlightenment or just our true nature. The “glue” that normally surrounded my thoughts and emotions was dissolved and the world is now experienced in a completely new perspective.
It is like flying up above the clouds where the sun is always shining. The clouds (the thoughts and emotions) are still there but they have a completely different quality and extent as the sun of awareness is always shining upon them. And the sky (now my basic state) is high and blue all the time.
I had experienced that state before for shorter periods, when I was skiing, watching the sunset or meditating. Now the state is permanent. My mind, which used to be a prison of thought, has now become a tool that I can clutch or declutch just like using the clutch in a car. There is no resistance to any thoughts or emotions manifesting. They are accepted – I have no need to change them or me. My body has surrendered 90 % of its tensions and the remaining 10 % are experienced in a state of complete acceptance. I am free – and infinitely grateful”.
Cecil’s experience of the quantum leap
I had no particular longing for enlightenment as I had misunderstood totally what the Buddhist masters meant when they spoke about Emptiness – to me that sounded like death, really, really boring and not attractive in any way :o)) But luckily Life gracefully gives us what we need and not what we want (or think we want)………and often in the most unexpected ways.
Life is so beautifully simple. So simple that when I received enlightenment on September 6th 2004 in India, I really didn’t realize at first the immensity of the shift that happened in me. On that day Divine Presence completely permeated my being, dissolving me into nothingness…. turning me into everything at the same time. ….. This experience left me completely transparent, one with the wind caressing the leaves, the earth, the sun….. and a deep, deep feeling that life could now flow unhindered through me. This permanently changed the way I experience life – everything is the same, but different :o)
There is an endless space within me, a complete inner freedom and a bubbling undercurrent of love, joy and humor, which is not conditioned by anything at all…. it is always there – also when I am crying. There is a fullness in every moment that cannot be put into words. Like Life breathing itself in and out of the heart. I love myself, I love people and snow drops and gingerbread and silence and working and ……….”
This whole enlightenment-thing is not at all about any particular kind of experiences, but about the FREEDOM to experience – really experience – anything and everything that flows through you without any kind of resistance or clinging. States come, states go, feelings come, feelings go, thoughts come, thoughts go…..in one infinite dance of Life. All strange, beautiful, mystical and very natural at the same time – and gratitude is happening all the time (like a big fat river flowing from the Heart :o)) and it has nothing to do with the particularities of the coming and going (of which I have no control anyway ;o)).
And there is no end to the Journey – it is like the knowing or the insights that I have already had, I am receiving again and again – but on deeper levels…like the process both before and after enlightenment is about discovering/experiencing more and finer nuances/subtleties of this magical manifestation that is Life. It also feels like there is a constant fine-tuning of my bodies to make them hold higher and higher vibrations for longer and longer periods of time – this, in my experience, is a completely automatic process, but sometimes the work being done is felt more intensely…. And for every fine-tuning new depths reveal themselves – it is an infinite journey in infinity :o)
I am full of Life and totally surrendered to the divine plan/love/joy/humour and always in the deepest gratitude to the great All.
Love love love love crazy love
The House Metaphor – The Cosmic Jail break
The house (the ego based and limited personality) is filled with both fine furniture and a lot of old junk. It has shutters on the windows. The door is locked and the key is on the outside. Inside the house it is dark. You only have a small flash light (the unenlightened consciousness) to find your way through the rooms. Perhaps you spend a lot of years cleaning and redecorating in various ways (therapy, self-development programs, meditation, yoga, reading books on spirituality, philosophy, psychology etc.) You learn how to rearrange all the old junk in the house (anger, fear, greed, arrogance, pain, grief, resistance, pride, low self esteem etc) and to place them so that you do not trip over them so often in the dark.
It is like a kind of Feng Shui making the energy flow better through the inner house, but basically it is only “sorrow management”. The task is not an easy one as you only have a small flashlight to locate all the old junk and store it in the best possible way. Strangely enough that old junk (negative patterns) pops up in new places even though you know you put it in a box in the basement. Naturally the house becomes a nicer place the cleaner it gets – but it is still a prison. The same darkness still prevails although you can entertain yourself with reading, knitting, movies and other fun stuff.
Very rarely you have been fortunate enough for the shutters to open and you have been able to stick your head out of the window and see the picturesque and open landscape outside. (The fleeting experiences of inner freedom – the enlightened state). These enlightenment experiences when you can truly see the beauty and the light slowly turn living inside the house into a hell. Because you know in your heart that in reality the house is not your home but a prison.
The beautiful landscape outside is your eternal playground and your real home. Every time the miracle happens and you are free to see the sun shine it is painfully frustrating when the shutters close again as quickly as they opened. You begin to realize that you can re-decorate your house for eternity, but that this will never set you free. The continuous re-decoration cannot open the doors or windows of the house permanently. The existential frustration and lack of meaning becomes more and more overwhelming until you begin to surrender and pray for someone or something outside the house to come and help you out.
You get in touch with helpers who are outside in the illuminated landscape (incarnate and non-incarnate teachers). Through communicating with them on inner and outer planes you realize that the last thing holding you back inside the house is fear. The fear of the great unknown, the fear of love, the fear of life and the fear of light. But slowly your confidence is built up through your relation with your helpers outside and you feel trust growing in you. You experience how your level of consciousness and your energetic frequency is raised in the presence of your inner and outer helpers.
Suddenly it happens. You are surrendered. Without any effort on your part the roof is lifted and like magic all the outer walls (the ego) fall away. The sunlight pours in and you suddenly see all the nice furniture and all the old junk all at once – lit by the sun.
The old junk is no longer annoying you, because you are free to wander all over the world. The content of the house (your personality) is microscopic compared to the open space that now surrounds you. And in reality the old junk is as beautiful as the rest of the world in the beautiful sunlight. Your reality has become the Universal Reality. Your personal consciousness has become Cosmic Consciousness. You are now abiding in the enlightened landscape where you have always belonged.
Being soaked in enlightenment solvents
Both Cecil and Bruhn have experienced the necessity and benefits from attending longer retreats (2-21 days) with enlightened teachers. Deep transformations happen in body and mind when you tune in to a higher frequency for longer periods. The frequency of the enlightened teacher creates a resonance with your own higher self. It is like soaking the ego and the personality in solvents (enlightenment fluids).
Based on the intense experiences and insights we’ve had from our personal processes we are offering a series of retreats, which can be attended as a whole process or one by one.
All retreats are based on a direct experience of the various themes through exercises, meditations etc. “It’s not in the idea – it’s in the experience”. Some basic ingredients in the retreats are:
- Presence work – catalyzing your journey towards inner freedom
- Teachings and dialogue about absolute truth and it’s power to transform your experience of Life itself
- Guided meditations, energy- and body-work
Read more about the content and form of the retreats under Ways We Work and under Activities/Calendar.