WHO ARE WE, REALLY?
To really come to the Knowing of who we are, we need to first know who we are not.
Taking time for introspection and contemplation allows us the opportunity to realize the many layers of mistaken identity.
The crux of Awakening is to love and appreciate our ego, our entry point into and our vehicle through this particular human experience, yet not identify ego as “Me.” The ego is an essential tool allowing us to operate in this physical reality, but it is not who we are.
When we misidentify as ego, our minds and hearts are co-opted and we constrict, distort, and limit our truer reality. The misidentification with ego as Self creates a powerful illusion of separateness that is the primary cause of our human suffering.
Examining and letting go of our identification with a lifetime of accumulated thought forms, memories, habits, labels, expectations, and all that we have gathered, allows loosening of the sense of separate individual boundedness. This loosening opens us to a greater sense of Oneness. And in that Awareness is our great sense of deep peace, compassion, joy, and contentment. That which we are yearning for is within us, as us.
So where do we start this examination of misidentification?
With gratitude. With self-compassion. With curiosity. With an understanding that you come by these false and limiting identifications through a lifetime of being told who you are and who you are not.
And then, take an honest look at all of the beliefs, thought forms, self-definitions, roles, and labels that define your mistaken egoic identity. To name them, to acknowledge them, you lessen the power they have in blinding you from your True Self.
Your ego will resist this self-examination. Explore it anyway. See what arises. Remember the way of curiosity.
Journal Process for this Week:
Meditation for the Week:
As you look at the many lists from your Journal entry, begin to realize you are none of these things. These are roles, labels, thoughts, feelings, and beliefs that you “have.”
By definition, anything you have, you are not. I have a body, I am not the body. I have a mind, I am not the mind. I have a feeling, I am not that feeling. I am aware of what arises, I allow what arises, but I am not what arises.
I AM. I just AM. I AM that which is aware of what arises.
As a mantra for this week, gently repeat “I am not the body, I am not even the mind.”
A regular meditation practice is an essential component to creating space between the false ego identities and the True Self. This allows us to begin to dissolve these false identities and decrease the suffering they generate.
The practices we suggest are meant to enrich your own meditations. You can add these to your usual practice, or simply experience them on their own. Remember, you are the authority determining what is helpful and what is not. Experimenting with different practices can help us find what is right for us at any given time. In this way of experimenting, one finds their own Way.
OPENING TO GRATITUDE
Our Spiritual opportunity in times of distress, upset, angst, is to open to gratitude, self-compassion, sacred intention, spiritual courage, and radical forgiveness that we may find our Way back to the Awe of Enlightenment, the True Nature of our Unbounded Consciousness.
We are always invited to an expansion of Consciousness through self-reflection, introspection, and realization.
And let us begin with Gratitude.
Gratitude is not an idea or concept, it is an energy. We “feel” it. It fills us. It is in feeling into the energies of gratitude that we open to the experience of being more fully alive. Expressions of gratitude awaken greater appreciation for the remarkable beings we are, and for the amazing lives we are living.
Gratitude reawakens our ability to be present to the unexpected wonders of the moment. Holding the energies of Gratitude allows us to more compassionately and meaningfully engage in this spiritual process of Remembering.
Expressions of gratitude can offer a surprising and joyful shift in our experience of life. We encourage you to experiment with endin each day focusing on feelings of Gratitude.
A Journal Process for this week:
Just before you retire each night, begin your journal entries with,
“This day, I am grateful for. . .”
Be curious and see what arises. Give yourself some quiet time to allow the gratitudes to find you. Focusing on Gratitude is very powerful just before going to sleep as it shifts you from the more chaotic energies of the day and opens you to the potential of Remembering a Greater You.
Pay attention to how this practice impacts your experience from day to day, from week to week.
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