“Don’t try to hold onto what is realized, be what is realized. You cannot maintain realization or sustain it. In order for it to always be, you must be it yourself—in your humanity.”
It is important to differentiate between experiencing and being. Prior to awakening, we may have experiences of higher stages. But these are just experiences. Wonderful, but if we try to hold onto them, they become a barrier. We can never hold onto an experience anyway. We’re just holding on to a memory of an experience. A memory is not even the experience and tends to devolve over time.
Real awakening is letting go of experiences and becoming that which we really are. And even the experience of awakening itself must be let go of to continue progressing. There is much more.
At some point we find progress is almost a continual letting go of what has been “reached.” A continual surrender into greater and greater depths of being.