One reason it can be hard to recognize enlightenment is that it is viewed as a long lasting solution to all of your problems. You may think that you become enlightened once and for all time. That may happen, but before that happens, your awareness of your enlightenment comes and goes. You remember it and forget it. You wouldn’t think that you would forget such a thing, but it happens all the time. The world is a very distracting place. You can forget anything.
Your enlightenment is your basic state of being. You experience it when you are absorbed in the world, not thinking about anything. You want nothing, fear nothing, regret nothing. These moments are so full of nothing that they mostly pass unnoticed. They go away when you start thinking about things again. These moments can be so brief and so inconspicuous that you would never think that you were experiencing your enlightenment. You wouldn’t think at all.
You are always enlightened, so there is nothing brief about your enlightenment and nothing prolonged about it. It is what you are beyond who you are. When you think you need enlightenment, just stop thinking, put down your problems and be enlightened, briefly. Then load up all your problems and go back to being you.