THE NEW AGE OF ENLIGHTENMENT
Enlightenment and the paths to enlightenment are different for each and every individual. Some use a strict path of religion and dogma to reach that state and others choose paths free of such restrictions. It's the goal of enlightenment and not the journey that matter when one takes on such a commitment. One path to enlightenment is the acknowledgement of a self without limits, ready to find that state through the help of one's guides. For example, we know subconsciously or consciously that we are not the sole intelligent race in the universe. We know there is far more to reality than what is accepted fact and it creates a longing for knowledge outside of the general consensus. Three centuries have passed between the last age of enlightenment and this new one though the excitement of discovery is still as strong in the human race as it was back then. Greater than space, greater than the depths of the ocean, the exploration of the mind is the truly last frontier where anyone with any amount of knowledge can make great strides in understanding those limitless possibilities.
The first age of enlightenment took place in the 18th century through the writings of men such as Renť Descartes and Voltaire as well as through great advances in science, politics and government. Back then, it was all about perspective. No longer was religion the only source of knowledge but instead reason now came to the fore. To go from reasoning to proof was the next obvious path and thus the age of enlightenment was born. Explorations to far-away lands widened the perspective of everyone along with scientific breakthroughs, exciting literary works and even more exciting landmarks in philosophy and thought. This was the point when most of our modern world had its roots through both the American and French revolutions as ideals replaced religious ideology. One could say we too are coming out of a dark age in modern times where a new age of spirituality is replacing religion as a source for guidance. Places of worship bring communities closer together and provide a comfortable place to practice oneís faith. With the Internet's advent, the world is now a global community and it will take more than religion to bring that community closer. What the world needs is enlightenment but it has to come from a global desire for spiritual growth on an individual level.
TMI, too much information, the enemy of enlightenment. In times past, freedom of thought that challenged conformity was dismissed outright as a form of madness or even outlawed throughout large parts of the world especially if it conflicted with the religious tenets of a non-secular country. Now freedom of thought and religion allow one to express or learn as they wish instead of mind-expanding information being banned and forbidden. Competing theories and a continual flood of new content added daily make any search for information that moves the soul a challenge for even the most patient of knowledge seekers. Even once found, keeping up the learning faces the challenge of getting sidetracked by new information that draws the student away from the original search following trails leading down unproductive paths. In the past, the growth of spiritual uplifting came from an inner search through books, meditation and contemplation of self. Today the self is directed outward towards uncounted options for entertainment instead of inward where one can find inner peace. It takes a supreme effort committing to consciousness raising and for those willing to make the commitment, there couldnít be a better time to take advantage of this new flood of information once a path to follow has been found.
Take a moment to close your eyes after you are done reading this to imagine living in the previous age of enlightenment. The modern world falls away to see yourself in the mid-1700ís without any of the electricity or conveniences we rely on daily. Freedom of thought was not for the sane as conformity was rewarded and self-expression frowned upon. Slavery was still a major factor back then as was the many rights denied to women and entire classes of people. Sexual preference was socially limited to the opposite sex, clothing distinguished class and you didnít marry outside that class. Too little appreciation is afforded these days to the fact that sites such this are common and itís no longer outside the norm to believe in what you want to believe. No longer are human rights ignored and we live in a world free of such restrictions for the most part with the freedom to expand consciously if so desired in any way, shape or form that we want. This is a time where the only limitations to finding enlightenment come from the person themselves and how well they overcome all the distractions placed in the path to that goal. Welcome to the new age of enlightenment, an age that will transform the planet just as happened three hundred years ago.
In love and life as one.
Russ and Karra