Gordon Atkinson at Real Live Preacher posted these signs of spiritual enlightenment back in November. I know many folks have already read this, but it was interesting enough that I wanted to link to it even now. Here they are for those of you too busy to click the link:
- The embracing of paradox
- The love of mystery in the presence of unanswered questions
- The acceptance of your small place in reality
- The willingness to engage in spiritual exercises without knowing how they will work or even what it would mean for them to work
- The increase of love, grace, forgiveness, and patience visible in your life
Part of me wonders if these are true signs of spiritual enlightenment or if they are signs he has interpreted as enlightenment in his own life. I can say that I share some of these traits, but I haven’t necessarily considered them signs of spiritual enlightenment. Befuddlement…perhaps. Hopefully we can embrace a blessed befuddlement as a kind of grace that we can receive. I’ve heard theologians talk about the simplicity beyond complexity, and I think blessed befuddlement can be that simplicity that we should strive toward. Is this the goal? Maybe the true end of our search is realizing that creation is so darn complex that we just have to shake our heads and smile a perplexed smile of amazement.