Normally waking up means rising refreshed after a long and restful sleep. But, prior to falling fully asleep we must be truly exhausted.

Exhaustion is one thing to the body, but it is another thing in spiritual inquiry. In this sense, exhaustion means to becoming tired and indifferent to our conditioned selves. To put it another way, we loose interest in our own agendas. Only until we become this exhausted with our apparent selves are we ready to allow life itself to become the magic carpet of our lives.

Before this, we are navigating the often troubled waters of our life. Because the underlying theme is nearly always self-deficiency, we are always seeking opportunities to gain in life or, conversely, to avoid loss. Thus every situation presents a win/lose outcome.

It is this very win/lose quality to life to which we must, one day, become weary of. Again to put it another way, we opt out of the game of our small selves. Our investment and interest in winning or losing just falls away.

This is the essential exhaustion of the self that will always precede awakening to the light of this moment.

Thoughts about “me” and what “I” need to do will continue to pop up. Conditioning has its own momentum, but now instead of falling for it and doing our usual psychological routines, their power to control our behaviors and mental life is greatly reduced. The real test of self-exhaustion occurs in those situations that really engage us in either a very positive way, where the ego perceives an opportunity for very substantial gain or negative way where the fear of personal loss is especially vivid. Authentic self-exhaustion will even cancel the emotional charge that these situations have had for us. We stop seeking gain (especially spiritual gain!) and avoiding loss.

We have now moved pass the egotistical concerns of the everyday life. To put it in the clearest language possible, the locus of control moves from “me” to “life”. When this happens we embark on the literal wings of life and allow ourselves to be guided by the substance of life rather than the substance of ego.

Each moment becomes alive for it is our newly created sense of self – so greatly expanded. It is a kind of spiritual molting. Our judgments have become painfully boring for us. The demand for gain and fear of loss no longer weigh us down. We are so much lighter. This is the portal to awakening.

Don’t negate exhaustion of the self. It is the prerequisite to the full awakening that is, even now, happening.


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