Enlightenment is a destructive process. It has nothing to do with becoming better or being happier. Enlightenment is the crumbling away of untruth. It’s seeing through the facade of pretense. It’s the complete eradication of everything we imagined to be true. –Adyashanti
This last week found me going several rounds with the truth. In the boxing ring with the lights on us sweat pouring out of every pore we fought it out. In the end battered and bloody, I lay on the floor. In the distance, numbers float past my head. I am down for the count. I have always hating boxing, its savagery, its brutality, its potential to inflict a permanent harm. And yet, here I am in the ring.
I lay there as the arena empties until I am left all alone. The last one to leave turns out the lights. My facade of pretense is gone. I have forgotten how to get up and try again because the world as I knew it is gone. Nothing remains the same. I remember the time before the fight and I want it back, the innocence, the ignorance. Knowledge may be power but this power is too much. It is attacking me from the inside. I can’t contain it and it wants out.
As I lay in the dark, on the soiled mat, surrounded by ropes to keep us in but that can’t keep anything out, I close my eyes and give in. This resignation, this relinquishing the hold I know longer have comes easily. The struggle to maintain my grasp has beaten me. It is time to let go. What I knew, what I believed has been eradicated. I watch figments of my imagination, the things that I clung to, the falsehoods that I had mistaken for the truth, float away.
The death of the imaginary has been a brutal one. Quietly in the dark, the truth slowly steps in to take its place. I hear its footsteps and take comfort in them.