Nowadays, no conversation about spirituality happens without the word “woke” or “awakening”. This leads to the idea that being spiritual, and following rules dictated to us by mystics, can help us wake up from the dream-like state in which most of us live our lives. We might also think therefore, that if we devote our lives to prayer, charity and follow a set of rules, then we will become enlightened. Nothing could be further from the truth: awakening and awareness are not achieved by following a set of rules, they are part of an individual and personal journey that must take place from within, and which rarely even touches the outside world.
Many religions tell us that by following certain rules we can consider ourselves as going through an awakening, regardless of which religion we choose, yet the vast majority of the world’s population live their lives unconsciously, as if they were asleep. Events follow, one after another, the years pass without any of us even catching a glimpse of what it feels like to be truly aware. This is a real shame because a life lived without awareness is also without true happiness. A life without awareness is a succession of fears and worries whose foundation is judgement and a sense of guilt and dissatisfaction. People who live like this place their attention on the details and concepts that distract them from their well-being, and feel pain and fear in their struggle to accept a harsh but very real truth: life actually has no meaning, and if it did, it would most likely be completely beyond anything our minds could conceive. So, feeling dissatisfied because you are unable to find meaning in things, or focussing too closely on the value of our life and on day to day events, is useless.
It follows that awakening can only happen through changing the way we look at the world. We must begin to observe it from a distance, moving away from predetermined concepts and labels, and instead start to learn how to appreciate life as it actually is. The fact that life is a nightmare for many people, an uphill struggle or a succession of unhappy events, is due to the preconceptions that were instilled in us when we were children, and the only way to wake up and be happy is to get rid of these preconceived ideas and look at the world through fresh eyes. Only those who can look at the world, at life, and at other people through the lens of awareness, can consider themselves awake and forever changed, which means that they finally achieve happiness, and can fully enjoy life.