This question has come up recently. We have been using the term awakening quite a bit lately. People are wondering if that word means the same thing as ascension. Are these terms interchangeable? I can understand the confusion, and it is time to clear things up. Not only will we clarify the information, but we will give you some valuable insights that I have not previously presented. Now it is time for you to receive them. We dealt with this question some years ago using still different terminology and I highly recommend that you click here to read that message as it provides good information on this subject without specifically focusing on most of what I have to say now. So, with no further ado, let’s speak of awakening and ascension. In that previous message we used the term enlightenment. We’ll deal with that word right now so that our focus can be limited to the two terms in the title. Enlightenment and awakening are synonyms. They have the same general meaning as I use them. You are welcome to substitute the word enlightenment any time I say awakening, but I will only use the latter term for the rest of this message.
Now, let’s go back to the beginning. In this process of dealing with the subject of pure non-duality – the realization that any time we are dealing with opposites we are dealing with illusion, with things that are not real in that they do not pass the test of foreverness – we are dealing with questions of truth or untruth. In truth there is Oneness. Of course it goes without saying – though I am saying it anyway and have said it before – we are using words here and words never express the truth. They are by nature dualistic because your reasoning mind can only work in the realm of separation. When we speak of Spirit and ego, we are speaking dualistically as if these are two different things that truly exist, when in truth only Spirit exists. Spirit is connected to the Divine and ego is not. This process that we are talking about in using the terms awakening and ascension has two steps. This is the new information for you, or at least for most of you. The first step is what we have often been dealing with in these messages. That is the letting go of the ego. This process is what we have been calling awakening. When you are awakened you are in an ego-free state. This means that you have no attachments; you no longer hold people or things as special; you have no personal goals; you have no horse in the race – whatever happens is perfect. What you do is to simply listen to your inner guidance, to Spirit, and follow it in absolute trust and love without a need for understanding. When the ego is dropped there is no judgment, no competition, and no right and wrong; there is only love.
Let’s go deeper into what this ego-free state is like. I won’t cover all of the many questions you might have about it, so feel free to send any that linger with you to Michael and we will visit them in future messages. When you are in this awakened state there is nothing that limits you. This physical illusion is now your playground instead of your classroom. You know that whatever happens is perfect, so the thought of anything possibly being upsetting to you is insanity. It does not compute. It will not happen. You know that everything that happens is on purpose and as it should be. Your part is to play your role, following your guidance, doing something that will be a joy for you. You know what to do because you feel guided. You are being told what to do, but there is no separation between you and the guiding Spirit. Your wills are one. That is non-dualistic. There is no limit to the possibilities of what different services you may be asked to perform. You might be teaching others through your words, written or spoken. You might be led to artistic expressions. You might be building things or growing things. Again, there are no limits to what you may be inspired to, other than you will be filled with love and joy in the doing. Results will not matter; only the doing itself has value for you.
You may be wondering how long this ego-free state goes on for. The answer to that is up to the Divine. We will say that as you are performing the services that Spirit is asking of you, which you are doing with love and joy, you are still aware of yourself. You notice the world. You have consciousness, even though the ego has disappeared. There is the observer and the observed. You are in an in-between state. Perhaps we could say that you are not ruled by dualism, yet you do not have the full experience of Oneness. It is not possible to have a self and to be One at the same time, so your non-dualism cannot be pure. You are still experiencing separation from God. The longer you are in this state of egoless self, the more you will feel the separation blurring. As you do all of these Spirit inspired things you will gradually realize there is less that you are motivated to do in the illusion. Ultimately, you come to the second step which is the letting go of the self. When this occurs you no longer have an identity; you no longer have consciousness. There is no you remaining that can observe. You are One with all, One with God. There is no longer a physical experience, a body.
There is an important understanding that accompanies the two step ascension process of first dropping the ego, and second dropping the self. Some of you have been afraid to drop the ego because you thought that ascension was in one step. You feared that dropping the ego meant you would immediately – poof! – leave your body, the world, everything! But that is not the case. When you awaken, everything is still there, except the ego. You are now experiencing the illusion without an ego. That’s it! Then you will have a long run – or a short run, depending on what Spirit has in mind for you – of playing with the illusion from an egoless perspective until you are complete with that. You cannot be forced into letting go of the self, nor can you force it to happen. You will stay and play in the illusion until you have had your fill. What we call ascension is the point where you willingly and through the grace of God let go of the self. Then the illusion absolutely disappears. There is no separate consciousness, and you are One with God. Of course the truth is that you are already One with God, even as you are experiencing the illusion of a separate self and an ego, but that hasn’t been a part of your conscious awareness.
In the awakening level of letting go of the ego, you know that it is all an illusion so you are able to play in it without attachment to anything. In the second level of awakening, or ascension, there is no more you. You have let go of the self, of consciousness of any separate awareness. Both of these ascension steps happen with the grace of God. Your ego will not choose to let itself go, so you ask Spirit to do that for you. You, therefore, cannot control the timing, though you can maintain a clear focus and continually face the untruths you are holding. Your self also cannot decide to let go of itself because that would be an act of consciousness. Only Divine energy can dissolve that illusion of separation to allow the self to be submerged into the Oneness. It is analogous to falling asleep. You cannot will yourself into sleep. The more you try to sleep, the more you will remain awake. Sleep comes when you let go, which allows it to happen. When you have left the ego, your self may still have a lot to do. Let it run its course. Your ascension occurs when the self has nothing left to do and can let go, simultaneously free of any need to stay or to leave. When this happens, we call it “by the grace of God”. This was demonstrated by Jesus. This was not demonstrated by the Buddha, though he did demonstrate awakening.
We have today, and in all of the messages talked about the egoless experience, how to achieve it and what it is like. To talk about the self-less experience is not possible. There is nothing I could say that would give you the remotest feeling for what the Divine experience is, not even a sniff. I have given the following analogy before. It has been said that the human mind only uses five per cent of its potential. What would the experience of using the full potential be? The awakened egoless self has a similar relationship with the experience of the Divine. Notice we’re not even bringing the ego consciousness level into this equation. And in saying that the awakened self experiences only 5 percent of the ecstasy of Divinity, we are being very generous. When the self has a “divine” experience, this a projection of the self, not a true experience of the Divine. The most glorious earthly experience with perfect weather, fantastic nature, smells, sights, sounds, loving people, and the feeling of a divine connection with God would, from the Divine perspective, be a descent into hell. The highest dualistic heaven would be experienced as hell by the Divine. So much for your ego attempts to create heaven on earth.
For most of you reading this, the information about leaving the self is academic. Your work is in leaving the ego. If there is anyone in the audience who is egoless, your job is to enjoy creating in that place as long as you are so inspired. Leaving the self is not a focus of any importance. Back to the rest of you, there will likely be a gradual transition where you are less and less influenced by your ego and more and more listening to the guidance of Spirit. If you still can get upset, there is work remaining. Again the final letting go of ego is through grace, not your efforts. It is not earned, but there is clear intention. For all there is never a rush. Everything happens in Divine time and order. Go set your alarms for awakening, but without selecting a time.