June 5, 2012

In this Changing World, is there a State of Enlightenment? ~ Josh Barzell

We’ve all experienced peace in our lives. We get a sense of what this supreme state is, move on with our lives and then spend our energy trying to getting back to it.

We hope we haven’t found that state via drugs and alcohol, or other avenues that would lead us to endless addiction to harmful behaviors. We hope that we’ve found it in a healthy way that doesn’t necessarily mean being a workaholic either. And we hope it doesn’t mean four days on the beach in Honolulu—because that can get expensive. Plus, finding enlightenment in external things isn’t what those ancient ones had in mind. Here are some ways that may help you on this path:

1.  See that the state of peace we all feel from time to time comes from within.

There are a couple of ways to try to get into this state in your daily life. One is to see yourself as you are—but in a new way that you’re not accustomed to seeing. It is to see yourself as a genuine part of the universe. See yourself as completely immersed in those feelings of peace that arise from time to time.  Now, even if you don’t feel good, you know that any good feelings that have ever come to you have come from inside yourself.  So, how is it that we look for them outside, in the world?

2.  Take responsibility for your own state of mind.

I see many people who are happier at times than others, this always makes me wonder why. If one situation is not pleasant, why do people find themselves in it?  We have to be real. This world was not created for suffering. It was created to experience joy. But sometimes, we have to look within ourselves to find it. We can’t just make it the world’s fault if we are suffering. We must make ourselves responsible for our own states of mind. Once we take responsibility for our own minds, we are then able to have more control of our world.  Remember, the world is not separate from you—you exist as a part of it.

3.   Meditate to attain peace within yourself.

Be peaceful in your downtime. Be peaceful at work and be peaceful with friends. If we find peace in our lives, it’s because we’ve allowed it to happen. When it does happen, we always realize in that moment that it is the best feeling there is.

This proves that the body is happiest when it is at peace. Find time to meditate. Find time to tap into this natural bliss inside. When you come out of meditation you will find a much more beautiful world. And you will, as a result, appear more beautiful.

This is the magic of understanding yourself and it will grow with practice.


Josh Barzell has been following an enlightened path for nearly 12 years, first under western methods of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis, and later under eastern methods of meditation and contemplation.  He has written on the subject of Enlightenment, with his essay “Enlightenment in the Modern World,” which can be found in book form on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, online.  His websitewww.modernworldzen.com is currently undergoing a renovation.  Modern World ZEN website has other short writings that are offered for free.  Josh currently lives in Boulder and graduated With Distinction from CU-Boulder with a B.A. in Biochemistry and has been writing on spirituality since 2009.

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Editor: Hayley Samuelson/Jessica DeLoy.


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