“The infinite is bliss. There is no bliss in anything finite. Only the Infinite is bliss. One must desire to understand the Infinite.” … (Chandogya Upanishad 7.23.1)
Walking the spiritual path has no glory. You will not be recognized or become somebody. It is slow and quiet, and not popular. For the spiritual path does not require that you spend time in Tibet or Nepal. It is not found in exotic lands or far away beaches. You don’t have to spend money or go on a retreat. It is not glamorous or showy. For spirituality is not something external to you, and the biggest chance you may even begin this path is through tragedy or suffering. It is in you, through silence and stillness. The spiritual path must be constantly sought, and applied through focus, intention, and meditation. It must be repeated day in and day out. It is not found in a dopamine hit. Nothing may change externally. It is more likely to occur the more you begin to let go, whether that be possessions, power and titles, or stories of the mind and unhelpful thinking. These samskaras, or subtle mental impressions left by all thoughts, intentions, and actions, shape the moral and spiritual development of an individual. The idea is to produce positive samskaras and break negative ones, and only then can we be free.
The spiritual path feels like going against everything that we know. Because pleasure and sensation are everywhere. The physical form is constantly surrounded by pleasures of the flesh and we think that is us. I want a cookie, I want that cute top, I need that person to like me. But that is not the self, the self is the watcher, the observer behind the finite self-caught up in these senses. The true self is formless, pure consciousness, it is you, it is me, it is the infinite. We can seek this through repeated mediation so that we can travel inward and begin to notice the true self. It will not happen overnight. You cannot take some drug to merge with it. You may glimpse it through some extreme event, but it takes persistence, unrelenting devotion to seeking and listening.
The spiritual path is available to anyone, rich or poor, able bodied or not, available to all cultures and races, all locations. It can be sought on a tree stump, in a closet, on an island, or in the slums. No traveling is required, no money to be spent. But you will not get a certificate, you will not get any “likes”, no one will write your name in a history book, and your outer world may not change at all. But you will find peace and contentment. You will understand the meaning of life, and that this life is not all there is. You will no longer feel separate, and you will influence and serve everyone you meet along your path. For this is the highest goal, not to live for the weekend or vacations or a certain amount of money in the bank, but to live because you are experiencing life, because you have glimpsed something beyond yourself, beyond the physical realm of existence, and touched the infinite bliss.