The essence of who we are is spiritual light which resides within.
Why is there so much suffering in the world? What makes us happy or unhappy? Why is there so much hatred, anger and warfare? How can we feel better and be more loving toward one another?
The answer to these questions can be found within us. Within each and every one of us is a spiritual light. When we allow this light to shine we create joy, happiness and health. When we impede the flow of this light within us we create misery, suffering and illness.
We impede the flow of the light through our ignorance. It is because we do not know how to create joy that we unwittingly create misery. Through our “not knowing” we have created darkness within us. Now when we look inside we see both light and dark aspects. In order to become whole and live in joy we need to learn to align with the light as well as heal the darkness as it emerges from within us.
We do not need to seek out the dark because when we focus on the light these darker aspects naturally arise. In the presence of love all that is not love comes to the surface.
This book is intended to help you to connect to the light within you, to help you to heal the darkness and help you on your own spiritual journey.
The spiritual journey
The spiritual journey not only encompasses our entire life, it is also a journey which we make repeatedly, often on a daily basis. This journey can be described as one of travelling from Separation, on to Connectedness and ultimately onwards to Oneness.
This journey is all about aligning who we are in essence with who we are in expression. This can also be described in terms of
being and becoming – who we are in essence (being) and who we are in expression (becoming). In our being we are perfect in every moment. In our becoming we are constantly refining our expression of our being.
To make this journey we need to understand the terrain (how the physical and spiritual are intertwined), which qualities we will need to cultivate to help us on our travels, and also learn to recognise the obstacles in our path and how to remove them.
The image that has consistently presented itself to me as a symbol for this spiritual journey is the image in figure 1. We can think of this image as either a kind of wheel with spokes or as a sun with rays emanating out from the centre. To expand on the metaphor of the sun, we are all individual rays emanating out from the same Source. The farther away we travel from the centre the more we identify with being individual rays or even individual fragments of existence. The closer we come to the centre the more we see how our ray is simply one unique expression of the same Oneness.
We can summarise the key points that this image represents as follows:
- Within each and every one of us is the same light which emanates from a central Source (A);
- The light expresses itself through each of us in a slightly different way. This is what makes us unique individuals;
- In the beginning of our spiritual journey we see ourselves as separate entities (D) reaching out to something that is “other than us” to help us;
- As we progress we begin to see that although we are still separate we are also connected in some way (C) to all-that-is (B – the outer circle);
- As we continue further we see that the light that is within us is also within others, expressing itself in unique ways;
- As we reach the central circle we experience the Oneness and we no longer see any kind of separation (A). We no longer see any difference in essence between ourselves and other people, although we may still see differences in expression.
What do we mean by the light?
Any being who has only physical consciousness and who does not possess self-awareness, will not be aware that there is a whole new world of mental consciousness, above and beyond his own. He will not be aware that there exists such a process as thinking. Similarly, anyone who believes that thinking is the pinnacle of human consciousness will not be aware that there are further levels of consciousness above and beyond his own. He will not be aware, for example, of what many call the Spiritual Light which emanates from a level of consciousness beyond the human mental level.
There have always been people who are aware of the spiritual light and who work consciously with it in order to help raise the consciousness of humanity as a whole. When the energy from these spiritual levels enters into the mental, emotional and physical levels of human consciousness, it brings about a kind of clear-out. As the light emerges it brings about a cleansing on all levels which removes accumulated toxins. Just as it is when we do not clean the cooker for many months and then we spray it with some wonder chemical, a chemical reaction takes place and a certain dissolving ensues. All the grease and grime is loosened and must be washed away. This is symbolically what is happening for many people today. As the light emerges it is clearing away the toxins of illusory beliefs which have led to toxic bodies and toxic minds.
This is an aspect of the spiritual unfolding that is often not grasped by aspirants. Many people believe that the spiritual path should be all love and light. But how can there be an enlightening without a removal of darkness? When we turn on a light it seems that the darkness has disappeared. But we do not identify with that darkness which is why we do not notice it leaving. We do, however, identify with the darkness in our minds and bodies, so when the darkness begins to leave them it feels as though we are losing a part of ourselves.
As the darkness begins to leave us it inevitably has to take with it any beliefs, thoughts and feelings which are not compatible with the light. We have to learn to let go of the hatred, anger, jealousy, envy and other negative tendencies that have taken up residence within our minds and bodies. If we see ourselves as spiritual beings of light it will be easier to allow this transition to take place. If we continue to identify with these lower impulses then we will endure greater suffering.
Allowing the light to shine
When we allow the light within us to shine we give other people permission to allow the light within them to be expressed. Moreover we find that the light within each of us is the same light. Just like individual rays of light emanating from a central sun, in the centre we are all One. One Light. One Source. One Essence.
By the time we start out on the journey back to the Source most of us have forgotten that we came from the Source, forgotten even that we are rays of light connected to the Source and have assumed that we are separate fragments of existence, disconnected from the Source of love.
But no matter how separate or fragmented you think you are, you always carry the light within you because in essence you ARE the light.
Stone is still stone whether it is a mountain, a boulder or a pebble. The essence of stone cannot be removed no matter how small the form or how far removed from the Source.
Our experiences as humans in the physical world take us away from the Source along our own individual rays of expression. But no matter where we go, who we pretend to be or how far we travel, we carry the light within us always.
How do we allow the light within us to shine? Sometimes all it needs is a smile. Sometimes the simple act of appreciation is enough to transform our experience of separateness into one of connectedness and Oneness.
How do we align who we are in this physical world with the light that we are in essence? Although there are many expressions of alignment the one common denominator for all is love. Love yourself, love others and love life. Through love you will always be aligned with the Source.
Although this is simple to say, in practice we can find it quite difficult because we have spent most of our lives learning not to love.
You may think that you are not very smart and that you have a lot to learn but this is not true. Within you is the light and the light IS you. The light knows everything that you need to know. The way to receive the message from the light is to remove all the obstacles which get in the way. Those obstacles are the multitude of things you learned which are not true and all the ways in which you learned how to do things the wrong way.
The part of you that contains all this “false” learning, we call the ego. This teaching is all about showing you how to get the little you (the ego) out of the way so you can allow the greater you (the light or who you are in essence) to shine through.
The false learning with which your ego identifies is made up of your fears, beliefs and judgements. You learned that you needed fear to keep you safe but this is not true. All you need to be safe is love, knowledge and awareness. You learned that you needed guilt to prevent you from doing bad things but this also is not true. All you need to live a good life is love, knowledge and awareness. The love and knowledge are within you. Awareness grows as we remove the obstacles to that love and knowledge.
*** This chapter is taken from my book The Light Within ***