Part 1: Have you ever had an inner conversation with yourself? Ever wanted to do something but ‘someone’ in your thoughts said otherwise? Have you ever been day-dreaming and suddenly you had a great thought, or some seemingly insoluble problem is suddenly solved?
In all probability you’ve had an encounter with your ‘inner guide’.
I had a heart to heart talk with a good friend yesterday evening in my local ‘pub’ – the pub is a great British institution where beer (and now coffee, hooray) and good food is served, and my local has a roaring fire in the hearth, several comfortable sofas with coffee tables and a bookshelf, ‘stuffed’ with good books to read. It’s like a second living room! If you’re ever passing by, do drop in.
This friend was the same one, mentioned a short time ago, who had experience some trauma in her family, was a devout Christian and burst into uncontrollable tears, and was in a ‘slough of despond’, living life ‘stuck in a rut’ or ‘running on two pistons and not four’, and yet she said she believed in the Good News. However, It seemed the Good News wasn’t good news for her.
In any spiritual belief, is it common for there to be a ‘mis-connect’ between what we know and believe?
With this friend, we were talking about my latest post about awareness and how, most of the time it is fleeting, and then we fall back into a spiritual sleep. And it occurred to me that much of what I wrote there might be of benefit to her, especially if expanded. So here goes:
Alternation: We alternate between being ‘awake’ or awareness, and slumber, and though we might want the former all the time and not the latter, it seems that we do alternate between the two. And, in some senses this is be welcomed.
If being aware means that we ‘live’ in the present and don’t concern ourselves with the past or the future, then to live in that state all the time, in this form, would be unworkable For instance, you wouldn’t be able to review what foodstuff you had used, nor would you be able to plan for the future about what food to buy. You wouldn’t concern yourself about last year’s great holiday, so why plan to go back there, infact, you wouldn’t plan for the next holiday at all. You would be so engrossed in the ‘now’, that other people, your family, your job etc would seem unimportant. So, being ‘aware’ all the time, in this form, is unworkable, I believe.
We don’t need to beat ourselves up about alternating between awareness and spiritual sleep. It is to be expected. It is to be welcomed.
My friend, (several weeks ago) overcome by grief wailed a mournful noise in the pub, waved her arms about and burst into tears, and felt hope-less. Her response showed that ‘alternation’ was all she knew. Her understanding, it seems, was ‘head-knowledge only’, and that knowledge gave no solid foundation to the ‘storms of life’. There was a mis-connect!
Head knowledge is a good start, but it’s a bad place to stop.
Using the analogy of my car: my car monitors what it is doing. I’m told that my car, and indeed all modern cars, have ‘electronics’ in them that monitor performance and alert the driver to any problems eg oil, water, ‘timing’ etc.
[As an aside, do not go to the garage that I went to last year. A light on the car’s dashboard was lit up and I had no idea what it meant. And I don’t think the garage did, either, as they told me that the easiest solution was for them to remove the lightbulb!]
Inner Guide: Go deeper into the operating system of the car and there’s an electronic monitor. Go one or two ‘layers’ deeper into the human psyche, the human being, and there’s an ‘inner guide’ that you can experience. This ‘inner witness’ is a ‘deeper you’.
I am not I.
I am this one
walking beside me whom I do not see,
whom at times I manage to visit,
and whom at other times I forget;
the one who remains silent while I talk,
the one who forgives, sweet, when I hate,
the one who takes a walk when I am indoors,
the one who will remain standing when I die.
Juan Ramón Jiménez
This ‘inner guide’ is unruffled by external events, doesn’t get annoyed, doesn’t ‘alternate’. This ‘inner guide’ is ‘constant’, cool, calm and collected. The ‘inner guide’ doesn’t move closer to us at times or further away, but waits…as it ‘us’ the alternating, emotional, ‘movable’ self that moves. You are more complex than you realise.
This ‘inner guide’ is an aspect of you that you can experience, and it is just as ‘real’, if not more so than the external ‘you’ you see and which is caught in the throes of alternation, for a while.
Knowing that, when we ‘alternate’ can come back to re-establish contact with that ‘inner guide’ is an asset, so beneficial and comforting. Infact, we never lost contact with that ‘inner guide’, but we just think we did, and act accordingly, and so probably felt/feel hopeless or upset by others in some way etc.
The ‘inner guide’ is the one who remains calm and silent while I talk, and forgives etc. ‘Joining’ with the ‘inner guide’ ‘balances’ us, and so there are benefits. Knowing that we have that inner resource at our disposal gives us another option to merely ‘alternating’ and responding to external events.
‘Then we will no longer be infants,tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind,’ as it says in sacred text.
Consequences: The abovementioned is, ofcourse, simplified, and I’ve aimed to illustrate that we have access to inner resources, especially an ‘inner guide’, and so don’t need to be governed by externals alone. And, that is a great benefit.
Ofcourse, people are different, and my friend had she known about her ‘inner guide’, might have acted differently, but there was part of me that was pleased she didn’t ‘bottle things up’, and hold it so tightly that it made her unhappy or ill. It also showed me that, perhaps, she was only operating at that ‘alternating’ and external level, and it was time to move up a level, to connect to that ‘inner guide’ (or realise an already established (but unrealised or unused) connection).
But, not only do many not know about there ‘inner guide’, some of those that do know, give it a wide berth for various reasons.
Tomorrow: How we avoid ‘meeting’ our ‘inner guide’ – our ‘deeper’ self, and why we do that, and overcoming that, is the theme of part 2, tomorrow.
Part two is now up, so to go there, and continue reading, do click: The ‘Inner’ You [Part 2]
Meanwhile, do please drop me a message and let me know your experience(s).