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Archive for October 4th, 2013

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I am currently at the third week of a five part series I am teaching called Self-Possession.  I love teaching and as is always the case, I unravel my own complexities and truths around anything that I teach.  So, with this thought in mind, I wanted to write about the Truths and the Dares that arise in exploration of those aspects of our nature identified as Lower-Middle and Higher Self.

A few basics about the points of reference before the interesting part begins.  Most spiritual traditions acknowledge that we are more than the flesh, bone and other physical matter that our bodies are constructed from.  Depending on what that tradition’s beliefs may be there are three to five parts of definition of what constitutes our soul or life force. Broadly at a psychological/spiritual level these relate to:

The Lower Self- A primal or animal self driven by instinct, survival and compelling urge.

The Middle Self- A self formed by conditioned responses, thoughts and emotions that seeks to balance the individual needs and the collective and societal patterns of what you “should” want.

The Higher Self- A SELF guided by the interface and acknowledgement of Divinity as an immanent presence within and without their being.

The goal being to bring into alignment and communication these varied aspects of ourselves and creation of a whole and enlivened individual.  In seeking this integration there are many perceived truths that are firmly clung to as being the real and true nature of that aspect of being.  This line of cause then produces the reactant effect of challenging those truths and daring to recalculate, refocus and reassess the ideology and emotions that empower something that may be unworthy of holding on to.

I thought it would be a good exercise to excavate some of these things I believe to be true and challenge their validity.  Although, this could become the basis of some shadow work, that is not my intent for this exercise.  It is, however a way for me to identify those areas of instinct, emotion and mind that need reformatting to make them more useable in personal spiritual work.

Truths and Dares:

Lower Self: The Animal, primal and instinctual self. The Unconscious

Truth– I fear failure, so I wear the mask of composure and success, especially when I have failed.

Dare– Accepting that failure is the partner of success.  At some point and in some time failure will be the winner, and the lesson that emerges from that failure is what will ultimately become the success.  I dare you to inspect your feelings about failure and what mask you cloak them in.

Truth- I am at war with my physical nature and needs. So, I ignore what I want and suppress those urges that would remove me from a space of control.

Dare- Structure and order are part of the refining process. So is chaos and abandon.  These are the testing grounds of what makes us truly human. I dare you to surrender to a primal impulse and allow the natural flow to loosen the boundaries you limit yourself by.

Middle Self: The Conditioned self by culture, collective consciousness, values and society expectations;conformity. Conscious Awareness

Truth- I question that I am fully capable of what others believe to be true of me.  This stems from feelings of inadequacy and not truly believing that I am as smart and knowledgeable as I should be.

Dare- We are conditioned by society to behave and act a certain way.  We are groomed by our parents that successful people are this way or another. We, as a culture venerate the educated and the higher the degree the more we aspire to be and act as these repositories of great thought and deed characterize. The challenge is in realizing that each of us has their own unique set of gifts, expertise and knowledge.  The truth of the matter is that the energy and time I spend in self-deprecation is wasted energy and time.  When I belittle or undervalue myself I am no longer acknowledging the expansive and flexible nature of my real self. This form of contraction cuts off the flow and exchange of ideas and information that are the supports of being knowledgeable and sharing that knowledge. By seeking out what I don’t know, I will learn more.  By fulfilling my own expectations and giving the best that I can there is nothing more that I can do.  By looking to hone my strengths and and using them as the building blocks of what I truly feel needs deeper understanding and clarity I also build a healthier sense of what I know myself to be capable of.  I dare you to objectively evaluate your strengths and weaknesses.  I dare you to step into the power of those strengths and those weaknesses and lay claim to both as a way of stepping into your full potential with the correct tools of self-knowledge.

Higher SELF: Connection to the Limitless All, Divine Spark. Higher or Expanded Consciousness

Truth- I try to follow a path of Service, but often question if I am serving only myself and my ego or working in accord with my Higher SELF.

Dare- Sometimes the lines blur between what is ego and what is EGO.  When I use the small “e” for ego I am referring to those actions that are guided by self-interest purely for the sake of personal reward. The uppercase “E” is the Ego that acknowledges itself as having a higher spiritual nature and accepts the responsibilities and the joys of that place in the larger cosmos.  I am coming to learn that there is more ego is thinking that every spiritual act must be self-sacrificing, instead of affirming that each has its place in spiritual work and at times what begins as one form may actually be better served by the other.  I dare you to fully accept your place of Divine Kingship.

Truth- I choose to ignore my physical nature and am often only concerned with my spiritual nature.  I could easily become a “spiritual junkie”.

Dare- There is the constant reminder that this is a lifetime of physical corporeal form that keeps me in my body.  When I was younger I loved the feeling of moving, leaping and defying gravity as a classically trained dancer.  I was euphoric in losing myself in the music and becoming part of a vibrational stream having no shape or form other than what the music dictated and the story portrayed.  There was freedom to shed the mundane and become something more; something different.  This is the joy that I feel in spiritual work. This is the same losing of myself in meditation or ritual that reminds me that I am so much more than what the limitations of physical form allow.  And, this is my greatest challenge. Seeing this physical form as limiting.  There is a need for balance in all things and the lesson of this experience is in union of the manifest and the formless essence that is co-creator of the experience I have in this life’s journey.  Ignoring or giving more weight to one or the other is a form of avoidance and resistance, neither of which serve the purpose of spiritual growth. I dare you to find that sweet spot of realization of your spiritual nature using a physical vehicle for its expression and finding your place of balance (not, necessarily equibalance) in feeding both.

I invite you to put some of your own truths to the test and be daring enough to challenge the way in which they serve or hinder your personal growth.  At first glance it may seem like an easy enough thing to do since we all have the same rhetoric we return to as response when asked what we don’t like about ourselves or would like to change.  Abandon that planned response and dig a little deeper into those areas that are just below the surface, waiting for your recognition and assimilation into the process of self-discovery.

Blessings on the journey of a lifetime!

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