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Can You Reach Enlightenment Without Meditation? If So, How?

Yoga woman meditating at sunset.

Meditation is a way to ease stress, depression, and anxiety. Many people turn to it during times of need to reach their higher self and become present. Some people use meditation to be completely enlightened, spiritually and with the present.

However, if you are having trouble focusing during meditation or do not find yourself making it a routine, you may be wondering if you need it. To reach enlightenment, to feel completely at ease with yourself and the present, you do not actually need to meditate. But you may be asking yourself how you can reach enlightenment without such an accessible tool as meditation.

Meditation helps you become present, and reevaluate your needs and wants in everyday life. It opens your senses so you can reach your higher self and become enlightened. So, how can you find enlightenment without meditation, and what is the true feeling of enlightenment?

How do you achieve enlightenment without meditation?

A man on a concrete looking at horizon.

To reach enlightenment without meditation is a path of diligence and concentration. Here is a list of ways you can achieve enlightenment without meditation:

  • A quiet, alert mind: Letting your mind rest is important. This means focusing on your surroundings rather than having your mind wander to the future or past, grounding yourself.
  • Self-realization: When your mind spontaneously reaches conclusions about life and the greater world, you will feel more at ease. Rather than having constant worry or anxiety, you are coming to conclusions about life itself.
  • Focus on the present: Not letting your mind drift to worry about the future or the past is important. Focus on your surroundings and your present moment.
  • Stress management: Stress and anxiety are the results of a worrying mind. If you are constantly worrying about what will happen or stressed about what tomorrow will bring, it is important to have some coping mechanisms. This will not only ease your mind but keep you in the present.
  • Leave questions unanswered: In life, there will always be things that we do not understand and are not capable of understanding. This may be understanding life after death, or that higher beings may exist. However, we may not have the exact answers to these. Instead of trying to understand it, let it be and be okay with not knowing. In this sense, you are leaving things up to the universe and letting your mind be at ease with the present.

How do you know if you have reached enlightenment?

Happy woman wearing white top.

Some people will say that you will never know if you have reached enlightenment. Enlightenment is a process, and dependent on your situation, can take a long time to achieve. You may not know if you have reached it or have ever reached it.

However, there are a few ways to tell if you are there or are close to it.

1. You are honestly happy.

In an everyday setting, you find yourself happy and enjoying every moment. You are completely present and not stressed or anxious about what is to come. When you are completely enlightened and content, you are happy with your everyday life.

2. You are no longer bothered by small things.

If you are stuck in a traffic jam, or your coffee order is wrong, you are not bothered by these occurrences. You acknowledge that this is our everyday world and everyone faces similar things. Rash anger does not control you, and you are content with inconveniences happening.

As inconveniences are a fact of life and you are okay with them.

3. You enjoy silence.

When silence comes in situations or it is a quiet day in the park, you feel at ease and present. You welcome silence as it gives you a second to check in on your surroundings and nature.

4. You are not connected to things or objects.

You find yourself accepting of letting go of tangible items. You are not connected to them in the way that society wants you to be connected with them. There is a lot of stress that is related to losing things, items, and even money.

If you no longer feel connected to these things, you will not feel the same amount of worry. When you are not connected to tangibles, you are more aligned with the present moment.

5. You understand that life is a gift, and live with intention.

Instead of taking life for granted, you live with intention. You are blessed to have each day and enjoy it. When you see life as a gift, you can appreciate the good and the bad that come with it.

This means enjoying a nice breeze, silence, or even a lesson that came out of a negative situation. Life is a blessing, and you live with this intention.

6. Emotions no longer take control of your actions.

When you feel strong pain or strong happiness, you no longer let these emotions control your actions. Instead, you make decisions or react to things based on contentment rather than strong emotions. You can separate your emotions and no longer react to them.

Strong emotions are only temporary, so when you react or make decisions based on them, the situation may change in the long run. When you can separate your emotions, you are no longer controlled by them and can achieve constant contentment with life.

7. You are no longer afraid of death.

This may be a difficult reality to achieve. To reach enlightenment, however, it is needed. When you are content with the idea of death and its reality, you can live without fear.

For much of our lives, we are afraid of death and avoid it. If you face reality head-on, you can be at ease with the fact that we will all die. When you are no longer troubled by death, you can focus entirely on the present rather than the future, creating enlightenment.

What are the 7 stages of enlightenment?

Low-angle shot of a happy person smiling.

There are multiple stages of enlightenment when you are in the process of finding it. This process can also be called the “seven factors of awakening.” This is as if you are awakening your mind.

These are not in any specific order, but each stage comes with the process of enlightenment. Mindfulness. To keep you aware of reality and the present, you will become more mindful.

  • Investigation: You will think and research more about life and reality.
  • Energy: You will put energy, determination, and effort into becoming enlightened and accepting the world for what it is.
  • Joy: You will become happy with life for how it is.
  • Relaxation: Your body and mind will be relaxed with a feeling of tranquility.
  • Concentration: Through enlightenment, you will concentrate on only a few things at a time.
  • Equanimity: At this point of enlightenment, you will be able to accept reality for how it is. You will be stripped of many needs and wants and will value life as it is.

Is enlightenment permanent?

Through hard work and a dedicated mind, you might wonder if enlightenment is permanent. It is said that enlightenment can come and go. That is why people spend all their life studying it and concentrating on it.

Again, one of the stages of enlightenment is dedication. This dedication may be lifelong.

How does meditation lead to enlightenment?

Happy person with arms outstretched to the sky.

While you can find enlightenment without meditation, some people may find it difficult. If you want to use meditation as a tool to find enlightenment, it is important to meditate once or twice a day for 10 to 20 minutes. Meditation is not the only thing that will help you become enlightened, as it is an everyday concentration.

However, if you meditate to create a silent and present mind, it may be easier to achieve.