Spiritual texts and psychology handbooks use a lot of different ways to explain the higher self. What is your higher self and what’s the point of figuring all this out anyway?
The mind – body – spirit analogy is probably the most widely accepted model for representing our understanding of humankind and what constitutes our being. These three distinct parts of the Self seem to encapsulate our entire experience of ourselves and our lives.
For decades now most of the analysis about human consciousness revolved around some version of the body – mind – spirit model.
There is however another way of analysing the self (one of many) that is equally valid and in many ways more useful as a way of understanding more about our spirituality and how we can live a more conscious life.
Looking at things in a new way can be mind opening.
We tend to get so stuck in accepted ways of looking at things that we rarely stretch ourselves to a new level of understanding that often comes from looking at something from a new perspective.
With this in mind, let’s take a look at spirituality from a different angle – from an angle that will help you in your everyday life and in consciously growing in both your understanding and in your evolution of your spiritual path.
What Is Your Higher Self?
Each and every one of us have two distinct aspects about ourselves. These two aspects are our constant companions on life’s journey and no matter how hard we try, we cannot escape them.
Together they make up your consciousness and your very experience of your Self and your life.
The first aspect represents our appearance and the “face” we wear in this world. It’s called the ego and it that part of you that represents you to others and to the world at large.
The ego is like a mask you wear, a mask that is necessary for your spirit to be able to ‘live’ in this life.
The ego is often referred to as the lower self. While most people function from their ego, the ego is in fact “below” the higher self.
It is only an idea of yourself. It is your soul, your higher self that knows who you really are.
These two aspects of yourself makes up your consciousness and higher consciousness comes from living from your higher self.
It is a consciousness where you can live beyond the mere surface level of life where the ego is running the show.
The Higher Self:
The second aspect of You, is your spirit or your higher self. It is that part of you that’s invisible and that quietly lives in that inner space deep inside your consciousness.
Try and think of these two aspects of your Self not as two people living inside you, but rather as two sides of the same you. Like two faces of the same coin they are inextricably connected to each other.
Both are part of the life force, the one primarily concerned with where you are while the other is primarily concerned with where you came from and where you are ultimately going back to.
Although ego and spirit are so closely related, they have vastly different demands on both your conscious and your unconscious attention.
Your lower self sees you as the centre of the universe- your higher self sees you as a cell in the body of humanity.Peace Pilgrim
Your ego is primarily concerned with maintaining its importance in the world. It always wants to be right and is convinced of the fact that it is separate from everyone else.
It’s always in competition – always wanting to be better than everyone else.
Ego always strives to have more, to be better and to dominate. The ego’s value is determined by comparing itself to others to see how it stacks up – the ego’s point of reference is always outside of itself.
The world is filled with ego driven people. Winning, being “the best” and being the most important and significant has come to be the main driving force in most people’s lives.
One of the key characteristics of more spiritual people is their ability to focus more on their own spiritual dimension.
Do not abandon trust when your ego thinks things should be different than they are.– Wayne Dyer
In many ways the needs of spirit is almost the exact opposite and is not interested in any of the demands that dominate the ego.
Spirit’s primary need is to be at peace and being right and conquering others is of no concern to spirit. Spirit has no need for more because it knows that it’s value comes from itself and not from what it gains, what it wins or what it collects and accumulates.
The Importance of Aligning With Your Higher Self
Much of our own inner conflicts arise from a conflict between these two aspects of ourselves. It presents us with two vastly different and conflicting sets of demands.
Living a more spiritual life with a greater sense of inner peace and personal fulfilment is primarily about placing greater emphasis on the higher self and on giving the spirit a greater prominence in your life.
It’s not a process of slaying the ‘evil’ ego, but rather about learning to subdue the ego and it’s demands in favour of the higher self’s demand to be at peace.
The real question is who you are allowing to run things in your life.
Is it ego or is it spirit?
If your life is driven by having more, being better than, being right and dominating; then ego is in charge.
If your life is driven by having a sense of inner peace, by being compassionate, reaching out to others, giving, loving and being authentic – then you allow spirit to take over.
Living from your higher self is about living in harmony with the flow of the goodness (God-ness) of the universe and you will rarely encounter any internal conflicts.
Ego on the other hand thrives on conflict. Every conflict is it’s a chance to prove its importance and dominance over other people and circumstances.
Renowned scientist Albert Einstein said it beautifully when he said:
The true value of a human being can be found in theAlbert Einstein
degree to which he has attained liberation from the self.
What he meant with his statement is that we will discover a higher value in being human when we learn to free ourselves from the demands and expectations of the ego.
The ‘self’ that he is referring to is the ego. The question is who is running your life?
Is it ego or is it spirit?
Learning to break through the facade that your ego upholds will ultimately lead you to live a life where you feel more peaceful, joyous and fulfilled.
So often people spend a great portion of their lives striving for the demands of the ego. When they finally reach the “success” their ego so desperately wanted they come to the realisation that this brings no fulfillment.
This often leads to a “personal crisis” which is the impetus for change from ego to spirit.
Being aware of the ego and its demands in itself can help you align with your higher self. Making an effort to make conscious contact with your highest self through reading, study or meditation are all great ways to feed your spirit.
As you gain a greater understanding of life and spirituality you will start to see your entire life in a new light.
Living from the higher self does not mean you can’t have success and achieve a lot.
It simply means that you don’t struggle for it.
You don’t fight for it and you don’t make it the be all and end all of your existence.
When you turn to the higher self and live from that place within yourself you will find that success and achievement is no longer the driver of your life.
Success and achievement rather becomes the result of living a more fulfilling life that is filled with love and joy – regardless of what happens on the surface level of life where the ego operates.