What is this human earth-trip about, anyway, I found myself saying to a client today: We are souls on earth, here to unfold our potential from within. And we have no idea what that potential is.
What are we to do?
First we need to turn the spotlight of our attention inward, where that potential resides. We need to invite it to grow brighter and reveal its light and nature to us. We need to listen inwardly, so that we hear its impulse to act and express, hear and feel its messages to us, and sense its reality. It is subtle, it is quiet; it takes careful, attuned listening. We need to make a space for this in our lives.
We also need to gradually dissolve the rigid walls formed by the structures of our ego, that keep us caught in believing we are less than our true potential. When those barriers are reduced, our soul can become more free to flow and express itself, in the way that it alone chooses. . . .
I sometimes think of this free-flowing soul-nature as ever-changing colors, or music, or as a unique fragrance that carries your personal signature. Or as light and energy flowing in never-repeating patterns you create, adding your special element to the amazing dance of life.
That and more is your soul’s potential; contained within it is every quality and capacity. How it will manifest is unknown until it starts to unfold, and even then is a continual revelation and surprise.
Opposed to this fluidity and aliveness are the dense structures of the ego, where the fluidity of our soul gets caught in frozen, rigidified repeating patterns of suffering and tedium. They are entirely predictable, hold us spellbound by their dramas of pain and blame, yet are ultimately boring and deadening, compared to the aliveness and refinement of the soul’s potential. Drug-like, they stimulate us but also put us to sleep. These ego structures are the soul’s sleep.
I am using the term “soul” here to refer to the totality of our alive, aware presence, the field and medium of all our experience (as described in the teachings of A.H. Almaas). It is not removed, above, or on a different plane of existence from our conscious awareness. In its pure state it is open to all the subtleties of spirit. We are born unconditioned, but quickly become imprinted and that fluid awareness becomes formed into what we call “ego.”
Through the narrow channels of these ego structures, the free-flowing substance of the soul moves, but only in predictable patterns, repetitiously, over and over; like a tiger imprisoned in a cage.
It is the same life force, the same essential substance of self, but imprisoned by structures built of memories, woundings, thoughts, feelings, reactions, concepts, fears, beliefs, expectations, and attempts at protection. And yet, within is always the potential to flow freely, without restriction, and to release into the world that true elixir which is uniquely yours to express and give.
To liberate our potential we must follow a double path.
One path leads within, to connect with and encourage the energies of our soul; to turn up the light within us so that it burns more brightly, so that it fills us and expands in all directions around us.
The other path is that of detached awareness. It allows us to step back from our ego patterns so we can observe, understand, and through skillful means, start to dissolve them. We need to cultivate stability in our witness awareness and enough skill to do this without getting pulled back in to the ego’s view, which has been deeply ingrained.
Gradually, by following this double path, the structured, habitual self, the predictable and limited self we have come to call “I,” will start to dissolve, until finally it no longer holds captive the true, luminous, infinite I which is waiting within us to live.
Then the alive infinite spirit and the one who lives in the world become one and the same. Then we are free.