Excerpt About Maturation
Engaging practice so completely and so totally requires a particular maturation of the soul. We are not able to have our practice be a continual practice until our motivation and interest for practice have become our own. The soul matures in this particular way when we develop an autonomous, independent, and true motive for engaging the inner work. This means you are not driven by your mind, you are not driven by what you heard, you are not driven by some experiences you had. You are driven by something much more fundamental, something beyond your individual self. From the beginning of our lives, we are driven by powerful inner forces. These inner forces, these drives, help our survival, our learning and maturing. These drives express life in us; they are expressions of the life force as it differentiates into various arenas of life, such as skills and functionality. Perhaps the most obvious and well known of these forces is the survival drive—the drive to keep on living, which commands potent energies and wide-ranging intelligence. We are born helpless and don’t have much chance at surviving. We won’t have the desire or interest to survive and thrive without this powerful drive that motivates us from beyond our conscious experience. There are other unconscious drives that express our sexual and social energies. These powerful drives—the survival, the sexual, and the social—permeate our feelings, attitudes, and actions. Generally considered biological in nature and origin, these drives are often referred to as instinctual.
The particular maturation of the soul that fosters true practice involves the awakening of a fourth drive, the enlightenment drive. Although similar to the instinctual drives, with similar energies and intelligence, the enlightenment drive is not completely biological. Its aim is not a physical one; rather, it is about the quality of inner experience. We may recognize the enlightenment drive as the religious drive, the longing for God or divine union, the desire for enlightenment or truth, or the love to discover the secrets of existence, what life is all about.