“Enlightenment proceeds from very simple processes. Here, too, t is a matter of developing certain feelings and thoughts which slumber in every human being and must be awakened. It is only when these simple processes are carried out with unfailing patience, continuously and conscientiously, that they can lead to the perception of the inner light-forms. … The student gradually learns, by their means, to see something like soul and spirit colors. The spiritual world with its lines and figures remains dark as long as he has attained what has been described as preparation; through enlightenment this world becomes light.” ~Rudolf Steiner
Whether you think the process is simple or complex, easy or difficult, lengthy or short may depend on who you talk too but one thing is certain with all real spiritual teachers: there is a process that needs to be followed to achieve enlightenment. The ridiculously simplistic idea that you have become an enlightened person just by joining a particular church, buying a sparkly crystal, or declaring Jesus your savior just doesn’t work. And as more and more people are becoming aware that these popular approaches don’t work, they turn, unfortunately, to atheism. What they should be doing if they really do want enlightenment is to seek out a real spiritual school.
Just as a doctor, lawyer, carpenter or plumber needs to start with learning from experts and to use the proper tools, so too must the person seeking spiritual growth. If the lawyer carried a hammer and a screwdriver while the carpenter had a law book, they could not do their jobs properly.
The interesting thing about the tools for spiritual growth is that none are absolutely required, though all can be helpful. It’s like the difference between crossing a lake in a rowboat or in one with a powerful motor: both will get you there, but one will do it faster and with less difficulty. Here is a list of the tools generally recommended for the spiritual student:
- Crystals or gems – They are used to help raise vibrations, awaken latent abilities, and protection from harm on all levels.
- Incense or perfumed oils – The scents also aid in raising vibrations, relaxing the mind, and helping to put one in a spiritual mood.
- Music, especially from bells or singing bowls (metal or crystal) – Music helps awaken dormant chakras and get energy flowing between them. It also helps one raise his vibrations.
- Colors – This comes into play mostly in what we wear and to a lesser degree, in what we eat. When actually doing spiritual techniques, one needs to wear mostly spiritual colors like blue, purple, and green, or at least neutral ones like white, gray and black.
There is more to the tools, but that’s a good start and if you check older posts on this blog you will find a lot more about individual tools. As already mentioned, you don’t need all of the tools, and some work better with one person than another. You will have to decide for yourself what tools you want to start with.
Even scientists are starting to recognize the importance of light for human health and now recognize that the pineal gland needs sunlight. The spiritual student must go beyond mere gazing at the physical sun like a lizard on a rock and turn instead to the spiritual sun. Just as the light of the physical sun can help strengthen the physical body, so can the spiritual sun awaken and energize the spirit and soul. Therefore, a major part of spiritual practices is to take in that light and to do it regularly. The problem, of course, is knowing how to do that. Simply looking at the sun won’t work, you will be taking in mostly physical sunlight which will make you more material, not spiritual. That is why spiritual development is something that should be done with the aid of a spiritual school and not by random experimentation.