We Are Born Enlightened
We Are Born in the Zone!
We are born enlightened;
We are born in the Zone.
How do I know that? I saw it! I saw in both my daughters’ eyes when they were born. Right there in that moment, I saw that pure awareness twinkle in their eyes. I saw it when my first daughter was born; and then again 8 years later when my second was born, I saw that same pure awareness. It was the pure resonance of the universe pulsating in their eyes. The oneness with all things around them. They had not learned yet to distinguish what defined their identity. We are born enlightened! Enlightenment binds us to our true nature.
We die enlightened! Yes, that’s right. How do I know that? Because I saw it in my father’s eyes just hours before he died. I saw that same pure awareness in his eyes that I saw in my daughters’ eyes when they were born. My father’s gaze stayed with me for a long while; to this day in fact. It’s something I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Yet something I would wish on everyone!
Between Birth and Death is the Zone
Well, if we are born enlightened and we die enlighten, then what happens in between? Life happens in between! But, unfortunately we ”forget” that enlightened state of being. How do we get back…to that sanctimonious state that is the essence of our humanity? We get back there through the Zone. The Zone is our portal; our star-gate to get back to that enlightened state we were born in. This is the way we “remember” our enlightenment.
We all have had that feeling of being in the zone. All of us! When we are playing our favorite sport like golf or tennis; or making love to your partner; or giving a speech; or acting in a great part; maybe it happens when you’re riding a horse; or meditating in the sand at the beach. Whatever makes you connect inside and out. We become the sport, we become the love, we become the act. There is no longer making love; there is just the love—both people dissolving into each other. Or in case of riding a bike—the bike, road, and self all dissolve into each other. (see chapter 29 of The Ten Paradoxes for testimonials of the Zone, download book)
What is left? Enlightenment. You are back to the pure awareness of birth. And the pure awareness you will die with.
Enter the Zone
When we “let go” in the activity in which we are involved, we lose ourselves. We enter the Zone. Now, the more skilled and trained you are in a particular activity, the easier it is to enter the Zone. I am not talking about losing focus as in mindlessly driving a mile and then remembering. The Zone is different, it is INTENSE FOCUS.
Being completely absorbed in the moment; an extreme mindful experience.
There are 1,000’s of documented references of being in the Zone in literature. I’ve studied many reports and books on the Zone, which is commonly referred to as Flow, Peak Performance, Peak Experiences, and Peak Moments by some sport psychologists. It’s the moment when an athlete experiences great joy, effortless ability, total absorption, and intense concentration. Many times, they are mystified by the experience as they have no reference for it. They seem to enter the Flow in the same way a river dissolves into the boundless ocean. The amazing fact is that all the stories of the Zone are relatively the same. Every person in the Zone seems to go through a portal to an alternative awareness that includes a shift to a meta-normal experience. One minute you are playing the game, and the next minute there is no you in the game!
Let’s talk about that shift. What are we shifting from? Or to? When we are born we have not yet learned to distinguish what is us and what is not us. We have not yet formed an identity. Although there are genetic tendencies towards developing certain characteristic traits, they have not formed. Once formed, however, neural scientists have found that even genetic traits can be overcome with behavior modification or re-learning the trait a different way, for example, shyness.
Your Personality-Body is the Gate-Keeper
Here’s what happens…after we are born, we form this identity—or lets call it the “personality-body.” As this personality-body develops, it begins to mask or hide our original nature and we simply forget. How many things do you really remember in your first five years of life? Once we forget our original nature, we begin to exist in this personality-body. It becomes all we know. We see life through this personality-body. We filter our perceptions through this personality-body. We learn who we are and what we stand for based on what we learned. The more we live within this personality-body, the farther we drift away from our original nature—the Zone; or enlightenment.
Our personality-body prevents us from seeing this wonderful aspect of ourselves.
Now, let’s go back to what happens when we enter the zone and push through this portal—or star-gate, if you will. We push through the personality-body which contains our false self. The personality-body is the gatekeeper. It guards the portal to the Zone. Once we dissolve this false self for even a moment in time, we ENTER the Zone. Sometimes even looking at a beautiful sunset can do it!
And that’s the experience that is repeated over and over again by those lucky enough to have seen their original nature again—the pure awareness of our birth and eventually our death.
Every time someone has the Zone experience it is a confirmation of our original pure nature. The time before the personality-body was born, the time after when we “let go” of our personality-body at death.
Between birth and death, we have the Zone.
We are born enlightened.
We die enlightened.
In between, our portal back to enlightenment is the Zone.
Paul Harrison AIA
aka Master Nomi
Architect, Author, Creator of the Zen Advantage Program™ (ZAP)