Q: It seems like my biggest challenge over the last few years—because I have done a lot of different things, really intense meditation groups, and workshops, and all sorts, here and there—and every time I go deeper, I mean that sweet, juicy, wonderful deepness, I have this belief that I am just going to stay there, and be there, and hang out there—and I am thrilled about it. And then, sometimes within minutes or hours or days, I am back in the hallucination of fear. It’s like you are in this amazing beautiful paradise and you are like, “Okay. I am going to leave now.” Why would the mind just keep dragging me back to this hallucination of fear?
A: So this is one of the commonest misconceptions that, “I have had these profound amazing experiences, why do they not continue? Why can I not be in that space twenty-four hours a day? That would be heaven on earth.” It does not happen on earth. It is not—literally—not possible.
What is possible, completely possible, is remembering. Is letting those moments where something more of the beyond has entered you, where you have gone into something that you know is more real than sitting here in this moment—what is possible is for the remembering of that, the reality of that, to be with you every second. To inform everything else. That is the most that is possible.
Because what you are asking for is a repeat experience. And the nature of experience is not repetition—it is change. And again and again and again, for every minute, life teaches you this lesson. But somehow (we are amazing—human beings are just amazing) we absolutely refuse to learn it. We expect when we are happy (it is really a joke—don’t we all do this?) we expect when we are feeling really good there is kind of, in the back of our minds, this sense that, “Oh, I really hope that this—maybe this is it! Maybe this will—maybe I will always feel this way!” … It is so human, it is so common. And it is so wrong. Because it does not ever happen, and never will. So the bad news is: You cannot stay in the sweet place. Life is, life is—
The good news is you can go to spiritual meetings. That is ‘the good things.’ … So the right use of the spiritual meetings is not how to stay there. And believe me, there are teachers who will take your money and teach you how to stay there. And it will not work. The right use of all these aids and helps is to get you to the point where you are better at remembering. Where you can be influenced by what is deeper—no matter whether you are in a sweet space or an unsweet space. No matter what has changed. No matter what is going on in this second—that knowing can be there. Now, what experience that leads to is not in your control. But the knowing is something you can do. Is something you can remember. Is something that can go so deep and be so true for you, that there comes a day where you cannot forget it for a second. And unfortunately, people think, when that day comes for you, “Ah—I am enlightened! Ah—I will never have a bad moment.” Wrong. Enlightened people and unenlightened people—same life. Same set of problems. There is nothing special about ‘getting there.’ It does not cure your problems. It does not make you ‘not human.’ It does not take you to a blissful cloud where you float forever. It just means, now you have completely accepted the unknown. Now you do not forget where you really are—which is the intersection of infinity and eternity.