Have you discovered who and what you truly are? Whether you know it or not, your consciousness is a thread of Universal consciousness and your body is a temporary vehicle for having experiences in this physical reality. Ultimately your self is simply pure consciousness and has no form whatsoever.
Levels of Self
The self that you have created here in our earthly reality is by no means the all of you. Your true self is not limited to the egoic self that identifies solely with its physical body and its worldly accomplishments and imagines that this is all it is. You are a multi-level composite being that exists at many non-physical levels at once. There are multiple levels to self and ultimately your highest self is Source Consciousness! To keep it simple, let's talk about the three most important levels; (1) The LESSER-SELF (or egoic self), (2) your SOUL, and (3) your HIGHER-SELF (your over-soul and beyond).
Self and The Nature of the Universe
Before diving deeper into the nature of self, we'll need to take a side trip to explore the fundamental nature of the universe. One cannot understand the nature of SELF without understanding its relation to the nature of the universe. Let's take a whirlwind tour.
The universe is a field of energy. And everything seen and unseen are simply patterns of energy — matter, electromagnetic radiation, etc. And here's the kicker, this energy field is CONSCIOUS! In some way, not fully understood yet, consciousness is embedded in the fabric of the universe! And everything is conscious to some degree; an atom, a rock, a cell, a plant, an animal, a human.
Of course current mainstream science isn't aware of this, but hey, there's a lot of stuff they haven't figured out yet. They've been ignoring or ridiculing the work of a small group of free thinking scientists, around the world, that have been digging deeper into this for the past twenty years or so. If you are skeptical about this and want to read a detailed account of what leading edge science has uncovered about the energetic field and consciousness check out the book The Field: The Quest for the Secret Force of the Universe.
The universe is intelligent and aware. It is essentially a mind, a being — one being. Many terms have been used for this one being; God, supreme being, source consciousness, etc. The term that I prefer to use is "Universe" with a capital U. Henceforth this is the term I will use when referring to the one universal being. And here's the mind-blowing part, everything is a manifestation of the thoughts of this one being. There two ways to think about this; (1) Everything is CREATED by its thoughts or, (2) Everything IS its thoughts. The difference is a fine point that probably isn't important to this discussion. Just to be clear, by "everything" I mean ALL THAT IS; energy, matter, stars, planets, etc. And guess what? That includes US too!
This brings us back to the idea of SELFHOOD. In a sense, the Universe is ONE SELF. But here's where it starts to get very interesting, apparently it decided that it wanted to experience "manyness" instead of "oneness". Why it wanted this is hard to say, maybe it was lonely, who knows. So it created OTHER selves. And because it is ALL THERE IS, the only way it could do this is by creating SUB-SELVES. It couldn't create other selves OUTSIDE of itself because it is ALL THAT IS, hence they must be WITHIN itself.
When it created each sub-self it did so with a slightly different mix of its own qualities. This way they each would be different and unique. Presumably it did this because it's more interesting than making a bunch of exact copies of itself. A bunch of little clones of oneself might be kind of boring or maybe even annoying. In addition, each sub-self has its own point of awareness and local memory. In effect, each sub-self is fully individualized. Another way of thinking about this is as threads of consciousness — it created many threads of its consciousness each with its own point of awareness and memory. And guess what? This is where you and I come in — we are those threads; we are those sub-selves.
And all those points of awareness that are US are actually its points of awareness! Yes, consciousness can do this. It can have multiple points of awareness. The Universe is experiencing through us! That's the whole point. The Universe does not want to WATCH "manyness", it wants to directly EXPERIENCE "manyness". The Universe is having a massively parallel experience through us! In effect, the Universe is SELF-ACTUALIZING through us!
- The universe is an energy field and this field is conscious.
- The universe is one mind, one being.
- We are all sub-beings of that one being.
- Oh by the way, as far as we can tell, the universe is infinite and eternal.
So IF the universe is an energy being THEN that makes us energy beings too! And IF the universe is eternal THEN that makes us eternal too!
YOU ARE AN ETERNAL ENERGY BEING … did you know that? Why then do we have physical bodies and DIE you might ask? Good question, and thanks for asking because this gets to the heart of the matter regarding SELF and LEVELS OF SELF.
Your True Self, Your Higher Self, and Your Soul
Your TRUE SELF is that eternal non-physical being we've been talking about. We'll call this your HIGHER-SELF, and it is a thread of source consciousness. From Sources perspective your higher-self is one of its many sub-selves. And guess what your higher-self decided to do? It decided to create some sub-selves of its own, one of which you call your SOUL.
Your soul is a thread of your higher-self's consciousness. Your higher-self created a bunch of souls (including yours) each with a unique mixture of traits. And each one of these souls is connected to a physical body and having a physical life. Your higher-self does this so it can experience many scenarios and learn and grow spiritually. Your body is a vehicle for your soul, and your soul is a vehicle of experience for your higher-self. Your higher-self is experiencing everything you are experiencing, and everything that each of its other souls (and their bodies) are experiencing. Your higher-self is the sum of all its sub-selves experiences. This allows it to spiritually evolve faster.
The universe (and us) decided that it would be interesting and formative to create physical worlds and physical bodies and for us to play in. One of these physical worlds is EARTH. Our higher-self creates our soul and your soul binds to a physical body (incarnates) because it provides a delicious experience and an immense learning/growth opportunity. The whole point of this "game of life" is growth and self-mastery. Hence, it is sometimes referred to as the "school of life".
You (your soul) CHOSE to incarnate and participate in the earth game knowing full well the challenges and the rewards. To explore more deeply why your soul chose to participate in the earth experience check out What's the Point of Life? Why are We Here? The earth game is a highly engaging, demanding, and immersive experience. A part of the fun of the game is that you lose yourself in it. You forget who you really are, and why you are here. But eventually you "wake up" to the fact that you are indeed in a "game" and this realization is very exciting indeed. After that you begin playing the game "consciously" — you know you are in a game, and you start to figure out what the rules are (the rules of creation). This allows you to start playing the game on a whole new level. And you begin to realize you have far more control over your experience and outcomes than you ever imagined. For more information on how the game of life works, and how to become a master player, check out the book Living the Law of One: The Choice.
The YOU that is here on earth right now is a multi-dimensional being. Your soul is an aspect of a higher-self which exists in some other energetic plane of reality and is connected energetically to your physical mind/body. Through this connection your soul, and the higher-self that created it, is experiencing everything that you are experiencing. It is often said the we are 3 part beings; mind/body/spirit — but the spirit part of you is actually three parts as well; soul/higher-self/source.
From the perspective of your soul, your physical mind/body is your LESSER-SELF. From the perspective of your physical mind/body the three levels of your eternal non-physical consciousness and beingness are its HIGHER-SELF.
The three level model that I've presented here is actually a simplification, there are many more levels of self than this. For a deeper exploration of this check out my article The Multidimensional Self.
- You are an eternal non-physical being that's having a physical experience!
- Your soul is an aspect of a higher level of consciousness which is an aspect of source consciousness.
- Your soul is bound energetically to your physical mind/body
- Your higher-self and source are experiencing everything you are physically experiencing.
Your Lesser Self
Many people only know their self as their identification with their body, their gender, their job, their possessions, and the thoughts and emotions churning away in their egoic mind. This is your LESSER-SELF. This self lives in fear of being less than others and having less than others. This leads to competition, conflict, greed, and selfishness. The world is full of people who only know their lesser selves, and has been for a very long time. You can see the kind of world that this creates — your living in it. It creates a world characterized by competition and conflict. This is reflected throughout our history.
This is unavoidable because the world we create is a reflection of our inner-selves — our state of consciousness. To change the world for the better, we must first change ourselves. Lasting change in the world is impossible otherwise.
Normally your higher-self would have some degree of influence over your thoughts and behavior but the earth experience is so intense and deeply immersive that we get lost in it. Our egoic minds are so attached to the reality of the game, and our thoughts are churning so furiously that we cannot hear our higher-self. We do not realize that we chose to be in this game, that it is indeed a game — we are completely lost in the game and completely wrapped up in the drama. Most of us will not wake up to our true self in this round of the game (this lifetime), and when we die, and become our true self again, we may be quite surprised and dismayed at our performance.
Your Highest Self, Your God-Self
As discussed earlier, in our whirlwind tour of the universe, your highest self is universal/source consciousness, God if that's the term you prefer — The being that is ALL THAT IS and that we are all part of. The being that is experiencing through all of us. The being who created us and bestowed free will and creative power on us. Not because it wanted to do us a favor or something, but because IT is US and US is IT. It is free and creative and so are we because we are it. You are GOD, get over it!
This brings up a very interesting topic. A fact that your higher-self is very aware of but your lesser-self has probably lost sight of. You command the same creative power as the Universe! YES REALLY! Why you ask? Because your highest-self is the Universe ding-dong! You have all the power and potential of the Universe (God) at your disposal but you just don't realize it. Check out Discovered Your Creatorship? Manifesting 101 to dive deeper into this subject.
NOTE: This article was one of my first and presents a simplified view of the multi-level structure of Self. Check out my later article The Multidimensional Self which presents a much more sophisticated and mature model of the multi-layered and massively parallel structure of our consciousness and Self.