Coming to God

Coming to God

On the waterThe process of unfolding to the Divine has a lot of variation. It also depends on what we notice subjectively and how we frame it. And it depends on how much refinement developed in prior lives. At some point, we pick up in this life where we left off before.

But broadly, the return to the Divine comes in stages.

The first stage is unfolding refinement. This includes refined perception, unfolding fine feelings, intuitive knowing, and more.

The second stage is when, through that refinement, we come to recognize the hand of God in the world around us. We begin to see the profound intelligence behind the surface appearance of the world. There are many ways this might come to be recognized.

I remember one point where the speed of karma increased and so I saw many consequences much faster. It made the rules of the game clear and helped guide my action. To this day, I watch for how life is supporting where I put my attention.

As this recognition and refinement deepens, sattva becomes prominent and we come to recognize the world as a divine play, Lila. We see even the surface experience as God’s doing.

The players on the stage broaden a great deal too. We often start by recognizing astral beings, like humans between lives, then angels and so forth. As refinement deepens, forms of the Divine can appear.

This is where personalization has a huge impact. Our culture, expectations, and the intent of the form all influence how they appear for us. The form makes it easier to relate to what may otherwise just be a cloud of intelligence.

As I’ve discussed in another article, we may experience them as a distinct, detailed form, as an intermediate or “spirit” form that is less defined (not the same as a foggy experience), as a law of nature or principle of Divinity, or as a direct expression of Divinity.

At some point on our journey, we may develop a devoted relationship with one of those forms of the Divine. This is called the Ishta Devata. This can correspond with the higher heart chakra (hridaya) opening or not, depending on our devotional inclinations.

Much of this can start prior to awakening, especially if there is a stable witness as a platform. But the fullness will come once awakening is established. The Self gives that stable platform for deep refinement. To paraphrase Maharishi, we can’t know God until we know who we are (know the Self).

Alternately, we may lean more impersonal, focusing on principles rather than forms. Or the refinement may not unfold until much later.

Ideally, its fullness will unfold with the stages in consciousness. As a result, we’ll experience a God Consciousness stage, and Refined Unity aka Unity in God Consciousness. But this is a little less common.

At the peak of Refined Unity, there is the potential to unite, even with God. This is God Realization and can set the stage for the Brahman shift, although it’s not a necessary step in that process.

The Brahman shift itself is a surrender of all expressions of the Divine in consciousness. In other words, we go beyond “God.” That can then set the stage for ParaBrahman or pure Divinity, where the Divine itself can be known by itself.

Divinity herself, like the above, unfolds in stages, revealing her glory to herself. She is the source of the source, the origin of all. We have come all the way home.

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  1. Malika “happened” to post on the same topic in her latest newsletter.

    Different Levels of God Within You:
    1 Fear/Conditioning Around What God Is
    2 Openness to Exploring What God Is
    3 First Glimpse/Experience of God (can be anything)
    4 Repeated Experience of getting into that State
    5 Daily Connection with God
    6 Feeling God every moment
    7 Acting through God
    8 Birthing Creations through God
    9 Marrying God

  2. Lewis

    Have always wondered about this. Lately I’ve been reading about the universe and it’s contents. 64% dark energy, 27% dark matter and only 5% “normal matter”. What I wonder is if Brahman or Para Brahman is only the tip of the iceberg… the 5% of normal matter and that beyond that is much more than we have the capacity of observing. cognizing or experiencing. Even that there exists those who are able to cognize more depth such as Guru Dev or other great yogis. As you might say, experiencing Parabrahman itself is just another kindergarten. That there is even a greater God beyond what we might think of is the beyond.

    1. Hi Lewis
      So-called dark energy and dark matter come out of a materialist paradigm that insists everything is physical. Every force must have a corresponding particle, etc. It’s “dark” because it can’t be measured physically.

      Maxwell’s original electrical equations included ether and were more accurate than the modern dumbed-down versions. If you include ether in the models, then it makes more sense and there’s nothing “dark” about it, just non-physical and thus not measurable with physical methods. But just as “dark”matter is implied by its effects, it can be recognized if they stop sitting in such a small box.

      Our eyes similarly see less than 1% of the electromagnetic spectrum.

      However, I disagree the rest is more than we have the capacity to experience. This is what refined perception is all about. Physical eyes are attuned to the physical but consciousness inherently perceives, so anything that is conscious can be perceived, depending on our skills and inclinations.

      Cognizers are relatively rare, but thats a specific style of experience. We can all experience in other more typical ways. All of the layers I describe can be experience by everyone.

      ParaBrahman may indeed be yet another starting point. However, I don’t think the progression is endless as it all comes full circle there.

  3. Giovanni Ghirardi

    Is there any particular method to see the profound intelligence? I can understand experiencing peace, love, or gratitude, but I think recognizing intelligence is a little different.
    Thank you!

    1. Hi Giovanni
      I mentioned the example of karma and seeing how everything is a play of action with itself, constantly seeing balance. Natures support is another big one. As we step into tune with nature, our actions and desires are supported in unexpected ways. We just take a few steps and everything falls into place. Easy. Even deeper, we step into the flow of nature and our life becomes guided.

      Of course, this is taking place in the field of karma so other dynamics are in play. And nature works for the whole, so the support shows up when our desires are supporting the whole. This happens naturally as we clear the decks.

      Studying nature itself is another big one. Having a world requires a constant input of order or entropy will take over and dissolve it. Having that same world grow and evolve requires even more order.

      And another common way is through recognizing the devas, elementals and other beings managing nature.

      Lots of ways we may come to it.

      All of this depends on our inclinations too. Someone more heart-centered is going to open to the love, peace, etc first. Someone more analytical is going to take the intelligence route.

      You can compare my list to Malika’s in the first comment, for another example.

  4. Priya

    You mention that you watch for how life is supporting where you put your attention. I find it the other way around, that life informs where my attention goes. And getting into the day to day moments, life and attention are the same. Thoughts?

    1. Great point, Priya. It can work both ways.
      Basically, if I’m taking a new direction, I watch for how nature is responding. Is the way smooth and supported or is there resistance?

      Resistance can be internal, to be cleared, or can be nature indicating it’s not time or it’s not a direction that supports the whole.

      But yes, when we’re in the flow of life, nature is leading our direction. We’re not the doers. We just watch the natures support happening.

      Yet, as enlightenment deepens, we come back to initiation and creation. Not as a separate entity doing but as an expression of the Divine, moving through nature.

      1. Priya

        I see the points you are making but I’m trying to point to something different. That expression of the divine, the initiation, creation is what takes the direction and attention arises simultaneously. There’s not even the noticing of it as even that subtle distinction falls away. I am not referencing the ‘flow’ here but something deeper and more immediate/direct.

        1. Keen observation, Priya.
          And yet, when you and the Divine are one and the same, what difference is there between that expression of the Divine and it coming through you? Who is creating/ initiating? There is no distinction.

          1. Priya

            Yes, and I think the difficulty here is actually failure of language (or my ability to use it accurately). I guess I’m trying to say that things can get so transparent that the falling away of an ever-subtler distinction/separation can be pleasantly surprising and only realised after the fact.

            1. Thanks, Priya. I appreciate the comments. Agreed. I hadn’t considered this for awhile, so I had to think about what was here.

              As part of the embodiment process, I’m being called to move into the world more. Kind of a revival of old ways of being but in a very new context. For example, doing but not as another. Clearing the collective, for example. Or setting goals – not as a person but as an embodiment, to give intention to the process and support further embodiment.

              Interesting to reflect on.

                1. Right – that’s another distinction where we can be on an inward or outward stroke. More focused within or being called out into the world more.

                  My illness called me within but there was a distinct outward shift at the beginning of the year. That still feels like it’s building into a new expression. Not sure where it’s going yet but what’s coming up continues to surprise me.

  5. I can see a progression here of:
    – being identified with the objects of experience and thus experiencing myself as the doer
    – being identified with the observer or witness, and thus detached from the doing, just observing.
    – being identified with the process of experience and thus being in the flow of the doing.

    Post-Brahman shift, a similar process unfolds
    – being Brahman, experiencing an uncreated appearance
    – being Brahman as the uncreated, in the flow of appearance.
    (nirguna and saguna)

    – being PB, observing the flow of the Divine
    – being PB, as the flow of the Divine.

    Of course, this is a broad generalization. What we’ll notice and how we’ll frame it can vary widely. For example, a devotional path may sustain a distinction and this remain secondary to the expression. Some will stay more detached as it takes refinement to step into the flow. etc.

  6. Priya

    Lovely. I’ve always noticed the wave and whether it’s high tide or receding. I did not used to like it before but now have great respect for it.
    Discovery is a wonderful thing especially when not entangled with expectation.

    1. Right. When we’re in the ebb and flow of life, we’re much more conscious of the collective and the flow of our own life. It can make change a constant, yet that’s the nature of it anyway. 🙂

      When we learn to trust the process, we can let go of any need to control. With the loss of expectation, it’s much easier to enjoy life as it is.

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