Given up on life

QUESTION: Masters I’m 48. I had my share of trials and struggles. Enlightenment was the ultimate answer to the tribulations of life. I have already had the experience of the Self and desperately sought to regain it. I even went to India to meet a “satguru” but come back feeling more inadequate and depressed than ever. Now I know there is no shortcut to awakening, no “direct path” to Self-realization. It’s programmed. The worst with this spiritual quest is that I no longer have any interest in life, no motivation, no passion. I have difficulty to be grateful for all the benefits I have, seeing Existence like a deception, a burden. Not surprising that I now suffer from fibromyalgia. How can you expect to help, inspire others in this context? ~Mabel, Canada

ANSWER: Self-realization, enlightenment, awakening, or whatever you wish to call it, is not programmed into a soul who has chosen a human experience. Your soul chose to come into this negative environment to face the problems you have before you and to work through them by understanding what they represent.

Where you are having difficulty is being inflexible with the beliefs you have ingrained in yourself. Your experiences have not met the expectations that you are convinced are the only way to go through this life.

What does enlightenment mean to you? Since you followed a satguru, it must mean whatever this person, with their Eastern philosophical reasoning, defined as the only way to peace. That is an over-simplification that they would like you to believe so that you will be true to their beliefs. There is not a single way to do anything. There are no absolutes in the physical world.

Everyone must work out their direction in life. Following another will only show you how things worked for them – it may not be appropriate for even one other person. Your lessons include self-confidence and self-worth.

Examine those things which bring fear and doubt into your life. Delve into them and find why they have appeared. Understanding and ridding yourself of these is what enlightenment is for you. This is the true self-realization. It is the actual connecting to your soul. Doing for yourself is the only thing you came to Earth to complete. You have no obligation to inspire or help others unless you have succeeded on your own and then may have the time to show them how you did it.