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The Original "Getting Real"

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Thursday, 16 July 2009

Damascus Road

Wouldn't it be wonderful to have one Damascus Road experience where everything suddenly was clear in a blinding flash of light? Life changed in an instant, and Enlightenment dawning in the blink of a blinded eye!

In my experience, it doesn't happen like that. The most inspiring ones, are those for whom the journey to awareness has been quite a trek. Gathering wisdom here and there, developing their own understanding and, more importantly, stripping away the layer upon layer of misguided beliefs until they reach a place where they are truly themselves, fresh from their Divine Essence, and can simply be.

Equally interesting is that the phrase, "Damascus Road experience" is based on someone - Paul - whose life apparently changed in a flash and whose ardent conversion led him to re-write the Gospel of Jesus and make it 'according to Paul'. Jesus Himself had been thirty years on earth (pretty old in those days!) before His 'ministry' began, and even during that ministry He seemed to develop His message, to the point of asking His followers, "Who do people say that I am?"

Those who change in a flash tend to be fire-brands and rather oppressive in their certainty of what is right or wrong, what is so or not so. Though there are surely some people for whom life-changing moments happen in a flash, I have little faith in instant conversions. Most truly edifying 'instant conversions' are, in reality, the result of years of learning, wondering, questioning and seeking. They don't blaze like fireworks making an impression, but rather simmer and create a steady flame growing ever lighter and, when they reach their potential, they have no zealous desire to convert the rest of the world to their thinking because they appreciate that everyone else is equally capable of making the same journey at their own pace.

Damascus Road experiences would make life so much easier for all of us but, for the most part, it's a steady pace up a steep hill, and we might as well enjoy the lovely scenery...And something lovely to hear en route is Charles Trenet's La Mer:

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