If everything is God exploring itself (lila), then one-sidedly seeking awakening is a peculiar form of delusion. It is an attempt to escape God’s exploration of itself.
It comes from (a) the appearance of I and other, (b) wanting this “I” to escape the “other” in the form of delusion and suffering, and (c) not realizing that it is all the play of God – God exploring itself in all its infinite potentials, including as (apparently and temporarily) finite.
In a certain way, it is pointless.
Movement through delusion
At the same time, it is also one of the many drivers built into the world of form – allowing for movement and direction of this world of phenomena.
Delusion, a belief in the idea of “I” and the appearance of duality which comes from that belief, is one of the main drivers in human life. It is one of the main ways God is currently exploring itself through and as human beings.
Delusion as God exploring itself
If seeking is present in a human life, then that is also God exploring itself. And if it is one-sided – from a view of awakening as “good” and delusion as “bad” – then it is just one of the many forms of (apparent) delusion.
It is God exploring itself through and as one of the infinite forms of delusion. And it is a delusion only in a temporary and local sense. Ultimately, it is just part of the game.
Exploration before and after awakening
When there is the awakening of our true nature, of what is with no “I”, the exploration continues. The only change is that the game is seen through, to a certain extent. And this allows us to participate in it more fully, the resistance – coming from believing in the idea of “I” – falls away.
We still participate in the unfolding of the world of phenomena, including through our own development and maturing as human beings.
This comes up for me when I listen to or am present to people speaking about awakening – in whatever form it takes – in a one-sided way, creating the appearance of awakening as somehow intrinsically “good” and delusion as “bad”.
Of course, as human beings we seek the release inherent in awakening and we seek to avoid the suffering from believing in the idea of “I”. It is important to acknowledge this, in humans in general and ourselves in particular. But this is still only the preferences inherent in our human selves. It comes from seeking bliss and avoid suffering, which is also embedded in our biology and coming from our evolution as a species.
Beyond this, we see that awakening and delusion both are God exploring itself – in different ways. One is not inherently better or worse than the other. They are just two patterns in the much larger tapestry.