Saturday, October 16, 2010

Liberation of the Soul

The concept of the Soul being Liberated suggests that it can be bound. The Soul is infinite and limitless and so cannot be restricted. Clearly there is a deeper meaning to the phrase Liberation of the Soul. To get to the meaning I need to know who I am and what the Soul is.

I - meaning my body, mind and intellect - am a micro manifestation of the infinite Soul. This materialization is limited in time and space and is both surrounded by and in association with other finite manifestations of the same Spirit. The Soul can shine through brighter in some beings than in others. This in the case of people can be seen as levels of beauty or strength in the realm of the body; sharpness of intelligence; purity of mind and so on. These manifestations can be honed and enhanced if the individual so desires. The mind has a limited capacity to comprehend the depth of the Soul. The intellect may understand it through analysis and wisdom but the mind has the capacity to experience its presence at a level that is beyond the comprehension of the intellect. Even still the mind is limited and so experiencing the infinite Soul is a monumental task if at all possible. There is a state that goes beyond the mind that is the experience itself.

A mind that is forever expanding by reflection on 'good' thoughts like kindness, compassion, forgiveness, love, generosity, gratefulness, and so on is most conducive to take one into the experience of the infinite soul. Contemplation and meditation are tools to help us silence the mind for short periods so we can integrate our thoughts and actions and bring them on the path to expansion. Silencing the mind and staying in the silence may be a good way for recluses and monks but for those of us who live in the social world of family, friends and work we have to step out of the silence and yet keep the mind forever expanding. This is what keeps us on the path that opens the doorway to the experience of the Spirit.

We experience the Spirit sometimes - when we are inspired. I am not certain how one expresses the experience - yet almost every one of us has been inspired at least once in our lives. The results of these moments are usually heroic or miraculous or phenomenally successful and seem to touch not only the experiencer but also those around them. The source of inspiration is hard to divine even if we are told that it is the Soul, or God, or Spirit, or Universe, or Oneness, or Love or..... We may be able to give it a name but can we really convey what it is? One must experience it and acknowledge the experience to fathom it.

The spirit can also be experienced when we love or when we feel loved unconditionally. There is a sense of being engulfed by an emotion that is very fulfilling. When we serve others not because they need us or because we need or want to but simply because we are there and we expect no rewards or name for it we are in touch with the Spirit. The smile that comes to our eyes when we see a baby or a cuddly animal; when we hear the sound of naturally flowing water in the distance and feel a sense of calm, we have acknowledged the Spirit.

To open ourselves to these experiences needs us to stay aware of ourselves as deeper than the body, mind and intellect. When we live consciously, with purpose and integrity we keep ourselves open. When we lose this consciousness and become engulfed in separateness, selfishness and fear we break away from acknowledging the presence of the Soul. The Soul is always there as the witness but requires our attention to be witnessed. The Soul and I are one and this acknowledgement is possible only when I lose my sense of separation from It and so from everything around me. Everyone, everything is the manifestation of the same Soul. The Soul is the equalizer and our ego identity is what separates us from each other and from the Soul.

Liberating the Soul is a misconception and yet is the only way to express what our true purpose in this world is. Since I and Soul are one, liberation is about my ego self merging into my source. Once that happens the ego self - body, mind and intellect - is seen as the illusion it really is. All manifestations are for the ego to eventually go beyond illusion and liberate itself by merging into the Real.

We can be in the world and be 'liberated Souls' at the same time. To recognize that this world is the illusion of our own making and so unreal, impermanent and incapable of providing bliss keeps us liberated. All work must be service towards all and not only self serving. All love must be unconditional and equal. Kindness, compassion, forgiveness must be consciously practiced. That is the way to go inwards while living out here. There is no sacrifice here, for when we live a clean, pure, loving life we create bliss for others and ourselves. We become the liberated, the equalized, the Soul. We know who we are.

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