VIDEO: “Everyone’s already enlightened, only they don’t know it.”

In her interview with PsychAlive Senior Editor Lisa Firestone, Dr. Donna Rockwell talks about becoming enlightened. Watch or read the interview below.

Woody Allen has this great line where he says that everybody’s already happy, only they don’t know it.  You know, and that’s what I say, too.  Everyone’s already enlightened, only they don’t know it.  And you know when you get in the plane and it’s cloudy and dark and you say, “What an awful day this is.”  And then you take off in the plane and you’re through the clouds and the sun’s there and you’re like, “This was here this whole time?  I thought it was a cloudy, awful day.”  It’s the same thing.  You see that all this discursive thinking is just these clouds that are always there.  But what’s also always there is that sun, the awareness of the profundity and the preciousness of this very moment.

And we can come back to that anytime we want.  And what we have to our disposal to that end is our breath, which we have 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.  It costs nothing.  It’s not a pill.  We don’t have to go buy it or take it.  It’s there every second for us to return to.  So the breath acts as an anchor to the present moment.  That’s really its most important function, aside from oxygenating our body is that it is that which we ride back to now.  If you can return to your breath, your long, slow dissolving out breath, you’re already back.  You’re already back in the present moment.  So, the sun is always shining out there.  We are already enlightened.  We just have to part the clouds a little bit so we can see it.

It’s nothing that we achieve from outside.  It’s something that we discover we had all along.  It gets me very excited.  It’s just so real.  You know, when I was a young girl, I spent a lot of time in the woods. And nothing was wrong in the woods.  Things died and new things grew and it just sort of worked in harmony.  And that’s really how life actually is.  It’s, it is that if we can learn how to part the seas of discursiveness and actually be present.

About the Author

Donna Rockwell, Psy.D. Dr. Donna Rockwell, Psy.D., L.P. is a licensed clinical psychologist, adjunct faculty member, community outreach worker, columnist, and mindfulness meditation teacher. Dr. Rockwell specializes in both mindfulness and celebrity mental health. She works with clients in her private practice and teaches public meditation classes. You can watch Dr. Rockwell on YouTube or read more of her blogs at The New Existentialists.

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