Everybody who wants it. But is it that simple? This is a question people ask me. Is it as simple as just wanting it badly enough? In a way, yes, however, it is not as simple as it seems because not everyone who wants it knows what they truly want. So, let’s put it in this way: everyone who truly wants it will get it. To start with, you do need to want it to have it, otherwise you won’t put in any efforts to get it, nor will you be willing to coordinate your life in a way that will allow it to happen.
Many spiritual people talk about how difficult it is to get awakening and describe how they’ve been trying so hard in so many ways to get it, but it didn’t happen. Well, did all those people truly want awakening or enlightenment? Or did they really want something else, but they thought it should be awakening or enlightenment? For example, are they seeking ‘truth’, or seeking ‘peace’, or seeking to experience some sort of ‘nirvana’ that they heard is something great? Perhaps they have been seeking it in the hope that all their life problems will disappear by gaining awakening. The seeking may even be motivated by the idea that once you get enlightenment you don’t have to come back to this hard human life. Or alternatively, the desire to gain some kind of superpower to do and change everything in the way they like.
After talking to some spiritual people, I realised that people do have their own concepts and beliefs about awakening and enlightenment. This is understandable because it is impossible to know what it really is until you get it, until then you can only imagine what it might be. People tend to construct concepts through a combination of readings and teachings, and most importantly, from their desires. People who want peace quite often confuse it with having a quiet mind and enlightenment. People who focus on life problems mistake enlightenment for a life without problems and suffering, seeing enlightenment as some kind of almighty multi-functional medication. If I was to say to you that there’s no guarantee of getting what you desire to happen through awakening/enlightenment, would you still want it?
If what you want is a peaceful mind, you will focus on spiritual practices for it. But, the practices for a peaceful mind might not necessarily be efficient practices for awakening. You might master your mind one day through those practices, but you might still not have awakening. Learning to control your own mind to be able to be in certain enjoyable mind states involves observing and exploring your own mental world for a long time. That can help in your journey towards awakening/enlightenment. However, please don’t get confused by thinking that controlling the mind and awakening are the same. You might be able to learn how to control your mind but that alone is not awakening. However, you might have awakening while having no interest in controlling your mind.
If you’ve heard many different things about awakening or enlightenment, but you’ve tried not to hold any concepts or beliefs from all this outside information, then that will definitely be helpful for achieving real awakening/enlightenment. You can want it, but please do not construct any concepts or beliefs about it. Please take all the information on awakening and enlightenment only as references. The information might be correct, or it might not – you can only really find out when you get it. Also, please don’t confuse achieving certain mind states, and having a life without problems, with awakening/enlightenment.
Do you truly want nothing else but awakening? If yes, then you’ll get it sooner or later.