Q. How do you know if you're awakened or not?
A: When you are more awake than before, you are more engaged with the present. You feel more alive. There's more energy flowing in your life. You feel more thankful for what is now. Your senses are heightened. You find more beauty in everyday things.
There are certain thresholds of awakening that are quite marked, but we don't mean to imply that suddenly a light switch moves and everything is different. For most, awakening is in stages. It is likely that if you could somehow put how you are now side by side with how you were twenty years ago, you could see that you have awakened somewhat, that you have made progress. When progress is gradual, it is harder to validate. Sometimes, others can see a difference and help you validate.
It is a step-by-step process. All you really need to do right now is be as awake as you can. If you keep doing that, as you remember to do so, you will eventually be a lot more awake. Specific explorations into what is blocking your awakening may yield some big leaps forward. Looking at the bastions of your ego and being willing to give them up can result in great strides. Facing your fears head-on can often accelerate awakening.
What might be called "right action," meaning doing things that are a blessing to others and to the world, can accelerate awakening. The principle here is that you act as if you're already awake, and your awareness may start to mirror that. So when you model compassion for others, it may bring you into an experience that you didn't have as fully earlier.
If you have been feeling an inner urge to do something, maybe something creative that you have not acted on, doing so may open a flow in you that brings greater awakening because there's an aspect of yourself that now has a way to get out.
Life itself is a spiritual practice. For most human beings, simply, say, meditating all day would not actually bring the greatest awakening, because it would bring forth just one part of you. Living a full and varied life and seeking to bring as much awareness to everything you do can bring the most possible awakening.
However, being distracted by the ample distractions that this world has will keep you on automatic pilot. Taking the bull by the horns, as they say, slowing things down a little bit and working to be present in whatever you are doing will allow you as an eternal soul to catch up with your body and take things more in hand.
Channeled by Shepherd Hoodwin