Sadhguru answers a question on how long it takes to get enlightened and speaks about how it is not a question of time but a question of intensity.
Questioner: How long does it take to get enlightened?
Sadhguru: It is not really a question of time, it is really a question of when will you do it. ‘How long does it take?’ There is no such thing because you are here. If you want to realize yourself, should it take time? In reality it should not take time. But it takes time because you do not give in all at once; you give in by installments. So whether you want to go by small installments and take 100 lifetimes, or you want to do it today is your choice. How long it takes simply depends on how intense is your longing to know.
Everybody would like to know what is after death if they could get it on the Internet. If you can login and just find out, everybody would like to know, but how badly do you really want to know? If you can casually ask ‘What happens after death? What is the source of my creation,’ that means you do not know the immensity of the question. If you burn with this question, to such an extent that you cannot utter a word but you burn, then knowing is not far away.
It is very simple. The reason why it is so far away is because the longing is still lukewarm. It is still not killing you. Still, it is on the side. If you want to know the truth like some entertainment, it will not happen. If you want it in such a way that that is all you want, then it is just a moment away, because what you want to know is within you. What is within you cannot be denied to you by anybody except yourself, isn’t it? So you just have to get yourself out of the way. Either you go in installments or you just go once.
Enlightenment need not always happen with a bang. It can happen quietly, it can be like a flower blossoming. The greatest things happening on the planet do not make any noise, isn’t it? Now a seed is becoming a plant, a plant is becoming a tree. It is not a small phenomenon, it is a tremendous phenomenon. Does it make any noise? The little achievements make a lot of noise. You know the cock gets up in the morning and makes a lot of noise. But the big things happening in existence do not make any noise. It is happening quietly isn’t it? So enlightenment also happens quietly without any noise – no big firecrackers happening, very quietly from one dimension to another. In the garden the flower quietly blooms but once it has bloomed you cannot ignore it; it is significant. The fragrance and the beauty of it is undeniably there.
So similarly enlightenment, blossoming from one dimension to another happens very quietly, but when it happens, the moment you notice it, it is a very big thing. You cannot ignore it.
Editor’s Note: Sadhguru explores the realm of the enlightened in the ebook, “Encounter the Enlightened.”