If no other in the world be aware I sit content,
And if each and all be aware I sit content.
One world is aware, and by the far the largest to me, and that is myself,
And whether I come to my own today or in ten thousand or ten million years,
I can cheerfully take it now, or with equal cheerfulness, I can wait.”
“A Song of Myself”. Leaves of Grass
In other words, don’t let anything you do–no matter how wrong, petty, shameful, or scary–get in the way of your loving. Let your loving embrace every part of you, because that loving and that joyfulness that comes with it is truly who you are.
Unconditional acceptance is the way to deal with the false self, so that we may live in our spiritual nature.
Please pause for a minute to read this poem to yourself silently. Then read it aloud.
- I love myself even though I feel uptight
- I love myself even when I am pretending to be something I am not
- I love myself even at those times when I’m feeling anxious
- I love myself even though I am judging
- I love myself when I am comparing myself
- I love myself when I worry
- I love myself even when I am being egotistical
So what exactly is the true self? Think of a person who seems to radiate something special. What is that quality? As children most of us had someone in our lives–a relative perhaps, or a neighbor, or a teacher, or a local shopkeeper–who always had a smile for us and a twinkle in their eye. Without knowing why, we were drawn to that person. He or she may have had a hard time, a difficult life, but somehow managed to avoid judgment, bitterness, and cynicism; and managed to transcend the human condition. In other words, that person lives from the center we call the soul or the true self.
Take a few moments and think about that person.
WHAT ARE SOME ASPECTS OF THE TRUE SELF?
- • Loving or the action of love
- • Integrity
- • Cooperation
- • Spiritual practice
- • Joyfulness
- • Connection
- • Enthusiasm
- • Fulfillment
- • Generosity
- • Acceptance
- • Peace
My late spiritual teacher, John-Roger, poses a Question: If we are indeed spiritual beings, then why–when the false self is running around screaming and beating us up–doesn’t the true self do something to stop it?
Answer: Perhaps the true self is waiting for us to be quiet and pay attention to it for a few minutes so that it can impart its wisdom and love. To connect with the true self, we need to leave behind the behaviors of the false self and emulate the behaviors of the true self.
Another way to attune yourself to the true self, is to give full attention to the rising and falling of your breath. Observe your breath in a neutral and loving way. By simply observing the breath, we begin to move further into the field of the true self. And as we do, we feel more joyful, more enthusiastic, and more naturally loving about the human experience, no matter how crazy it seems at times.
PRACTICE LIVING IN THE MOMENT:
When practicing “living in the moment,” you release outdated negative thoughts, feelings, and beliefs; and recognize lifelong patterns that no longer support you. With “new eyes,” you begin to recognize and celebrate the extraordinary human being within you.
You come away feeling lighter, more loving, more forgiving, and more grateful, for having had the courage to move on with your life. You can let go of the past and create an inspiring future.
It is possible that much of the difficulty we experience in life, and much of the joy we miss, is the result of being who we’re not. It is possible to be who we truly are, to enjoy the harmony and balance of being aligned with our Soul.
DO SOMETHING FOR SOMEONE ELSE
Guess what I’m going to ask you to do? Yes, you guessed it: Go do something for someone else. This does not need to be a full-fledged service project. A quick review of your friends and family will probably reveal someone who could use a helping hand at something.
Or, you can go out with the intention of being of service and see what comes to you. It could be as simple as giving directions to a lost tourist or buying a homeless person a hamburger.
When the person you’re to do something for appears, you’ll know.
YOUR WHOLE LIFE AND YOUR TRUE SELF BECOMES A PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING.
Here’s to being true to your authentic self,
With warmth and love,