There is a line in A Course in Miracles that talks about a Great Power that is ‘in you but not of you’. This notion that we are in the world, but not of the world – can be expressed many ways. In my own personal practice, one of the most useful ways of relating to this idea is that we are spiritual beings having a human experience.
Our non-physical Essence is often described as the Higher Self or the Soul. This is the Self that exists before the thinking mind develops. Also called the Original Self, this part of You is programmed for Love, Connection, Harmony, Growth, and Joy. This Self is in perfect connection with the Source Energy from which it came. In other words, the Higher Self is in direct contact with the Higher Power.
No matter what you call it, there is One Universal Truth upon which we can all agree – we are all Creations of the Creator. As such, we possess within us a spark or Life Force, that is not of us. A Course in Miracles states that this Force is wholly Benevolent and Loving. In fact, this force is Love – the pure, positive energy behind all creation. What’s comforting about this, is that because we did not create this Loving Force, we also cannot destroy it. However, because we have Free Will; at any moment we can turn away from our true nature as Loving and Benevolent beings. We are free to drop into fear, separation, guilt, judgement, and contraction. This is the realm of the ego.
The ego is the self that develops with the thinking mind and is often referred to as the small self. Because of its perception of separateness, this self feels as though the weight of the world is on its shoulders. Disconnected from the Love and Power of Source, the small self constantly feels as though it must prove its worth and always improve itself further. This self is said to have forgotten or turned away from its essence and fallen into the illusion of littleness.
The physical bodies we are born into are like vehicles assigned to the Soul in the quest for Growth. What this means is that as we set forth programmed for Love and Expansion, we will find ourselves presented with opportunity after opportunity for growth. We will bump into people and situations which will challenge our capacity to think and act with Love.
Your Higher Self refuses to drop down and play in the mud with your small self. The reason we often feel a sense of fragmentation or any negative emotion for that matter, is that the Higher Self knows better than to ever wander down that dark alleyway of littleness. When the little self descends into the darkness of doubt, guilt, shame, judgement, or any other expression of fear, the Higher Self stands with feet firmly planted in Truth. The Higher Self will not take its eyes off the prize – Love. This splitting of the Self is experienced as negative emotion such as anxiety, depression, anger, hate, disgust and so on.
When we are thinking thoughts of Love, Gratitude, Acceptance, Forgiveness, and Positivity, the small self surrenders to the Truth. To be in Alignment is to remember our True Nature, our spiritual programming and our Higher Purpose. Alignment occurs when the small self shuts up. A Course in Miracles is often described as a healing of the split mind, a reordering of thought systems based on fear back to a system based on Love. One of the most challenging aspects of this process is to convince the small mind or the ego, that there is nothing external that need be acquired and nothing to do in order to become deserving of this unconditional Love and Acceptance. We already have a direct link within, its not our job to make love flow but to identify and remove the barriers that might obstruct its natural and endless flow in our lives.
In meditation, we entrain the consciousness to look back in the direction of Love. The idea is that this Love has been there the whole time, we simply need to return to it. We gently engage in the work of unlearning the teachings of the physical world, so that we may live in this world as teachers of love.