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We see it all the time.

You are driving, and unknowingly you take a left to your own home. It was your hands, but not you.

“There was a time when I used to sleepwalk. And once I woke on the parapet of a 60 foot high building… My mom petrified near me. Not knowing whether to pull me back, wake me, or watch and trust? I gave a shriek and toppled over this way, into my mom & dad’s hands.” – A seeker. Many in India will think of this as a past life intrusion {possible}, possession {possible}, but the most likely explanation is the body consciousness taking the reins of the body.

A young 3 year old relative, would sometimes be talking to you, suddenly his hands would dart out pick a curio and send it flying. He was a lovely kid. His body consciousness, exuberant and curious would sometimes slip the reins.

A friend: Saba encountered a terrible crisis on a trek. Where everyone else fell apart she felt a cold presence takeover and handle everything, coolly, calmly… Who was this other her?

“In 1980’s, when I was in St Stephen’s college, we were having an arbit discussion about a temple, this was before I had ever visited a temple, and one of my seniors was talking about darshan etc., words suddenly burst out of my mouth. “Why do you want to visit a temple, when I am here?” The senior who looked into my eyes shrank back, a little stunned. It was just fact, unvarnished, real. And remember this was still in ragging time. Who spoke through me? Now I know. Then it was as if a curtain was twitched impatiently aside.” – Tarun.

Most journeys begin with a glimpse. A hint. A dream. A boast even. When I Tarun blurted this out, I had already merged with a cyclonic storm and seen Madras from a perspective that was unbelievable. But could I then ask Storm to shift direction? Would storm hear me if I asked? No. Today we can do so. We can talk to Storm, and Storm may listen, will it agree? For about 25 years, we have taken many to the hem of God… But can I honestly say, as some gurus do: ‘I am Bramha’. It is true, I am Bramha, you are Bramha, but can I claim that truth without it being a lie? A tantric sage had a simple way of separating grain from chaff. A teacher claimed to be realized. He stuck a knife into the teacher’s foot. The teacher shrieked in pain. The tantric pointed out, that claim was a lie.  

“In the early 2000’s, after an explosive session, Tanya an advanced seeker, exclaimed “The Sun & the moon are my anklets… And for a millisecond it was true she was connected to a self to whom The Sun.”

But can Tanya or any of us know the planets so well, they will brighten at their request? Yes.

Dreams Reveal Egoic conversation

Where The Many Mes Have Been Hiding?
Many know The Muladhara, Sahasrara Chakras: Fewer know The Ka, Ba, Akh, and Nafs. Many talk of chakras, energy bodies, past lives. But few talk of the Many Selves and Souls.

When we talk of the many selves, you hear a furious… “But I thought I had only one soul” many will exclaim. “There is only one self in me.”

And here’s the crux, 1) All of us know we have many selves. We do? Yes. Just as we discussed in the article intro. Take the most basic: The Sleeping & Waking Me. {You maybe confident at work but mutter in sleep.}. How you behave when awake, groggy, asleep are different.

Second, we all know Public Persona and Private Persona: The I projected to the world. And the I that you are when no one’s watching.

Third, we all know Thinking Me and Automatic Me: The I projected to the world. And the I you are when no one’s watching.

Then there are other I’s, the normal I and the I in crisis. 

While we all know there are many mes in me. Many I’s in I. The way this orchestra of your being listens to its conductor, the ego, means we sometimes forget the many selves.

The Self in action

{There are days when the sound coming from a kitchen, reveals the maid's mood... sometimes it is unconscious... the irritation, anger, is embedded into the hands. What is not said is said... Sometimes unknowingly...}

The Egos: Easier To Know, Harder To See:
Now one great reason many focus on Chakras rather than egos is because chakras are easier to see. For they are connected more clearly to body locales. For example, Celia’s ego now as she is cooking is connected to the navel, but is some 7 feet away from her body at the heart level. Her body consciousness then was centred below her feet. Her higher self looked like a fan above the head (Actually her higher selves, 6 of them were revealed then, 3 had temporarily aligned themselves.)

Tarun’s Ego as he writes this has his ego connected to his navel chakra, but it’s proboscis is deeply embedded in the 3rd eye.  His higher self on his right shoulder, is at the moment not connected to his chakras, at all. But is a free floating entity.

ego n goddess

The Indian Tradition's focus on chakras:
Another reason why The Ego is talked about but not seen is simply: Focus. One of the more influential ways of looking at the spiritual world today is the Indian tradition, and this tends to focus on Chakras. The entire dialogue centres around Chakras. Many go to the extent of saying by tapping the major chakras one can reach the ultimate. While Chakras are certainly useful, the truth is what we consider to be Chakras are structures on the etheric, lower body, astral & causal bodies principally. While these can trigger higher order shifts often they don’t.

While obviously the Indian tradition speaks of the ego, the average guru, speaks only of egos and egolessness. But it today does not pay sufficient attention to the many gears between.

The Egos and how multiple traditions look at it:
Now other traditions are not as Chakra focused. For example the Egyptian tradition speaks of the Ka, Ba, Akh of Egyptians.

The Arabic Middle Eastern Tradition clearly speaks of Nafs & Ruhs, or Egos/Selves/Souls…

The Judaic tradition in its qabbalic mode with its tree of life offers a variant format of selfhood.

The Buddhist Tradition speaks of many minds, many levels of the Mind. Many mandalas are beautiful systematizations of such.

From another continent the Amer-Indian Tradition speaks of the inner twins: The Outer Ego and The Inner Ego.

Nafs, egos selves

Closer to our modern world we see Freud’s formulation of the Id, Ego, SuperEgo. This closely parallels Middle Eastern ideas… For example similarly, The Middle Eastern Lower Mind is depicted as animalistic. Precisely what The Id is supposed to be. {This also highlights an unfortunate tendency of the Western Scientific tradition. Stealing. Borrowing from the ancients without giving credit. Freud is both pioneer and just copyist given credit.}

The Body Consciousness: Hidden by Conditioning:
We have given a far more detailed understanding of the many selves in The Chronicle of Death & Rebirth}. Obviously, the body consciousness has deep primacy in a human child’s early years.

The Body Consciousness is very deliberately modified, restructured and even terraformed. One of the strongest ways in which animals mark territory is by urinating and defecating. But what has that to do with me? You may not be able to relate…

Consider how the Body Consciousness ‘thinks’… and how it weaves into life…
‘I put my smell on things’.
‘I put my mark on cattle.’
‘I put my child in a woman’.
‘I put my progeny at the centre of a dynasty’.

But some will say that is lower egoic action. What about higher level functioning. The ‘highest’ peak of most traditions is the development of priests. Where are Western Priests shaped? In seminaries. What is the root word of seminaries? Semen!

Now civilization, human civilization very strongly imprints itself on how a baby shits, pees, eats, walks, sees, thinks, and this control mechanism is so deep, and pervasive, discussing alternates, even looking at it is taboo.

Body consciousness in its true form is often impossible to witness, because the taming, or should we say, the crippling of the body consciousness is so thorough.

A truly free body consciousness is capable of physical feats that far surpass the greatest athletes. Just as a monkey can make a monkey of the world’s greatest gymnasts.

Then there are other gifts that are even more impossible to comprehend. The ability to live with minimal breathing. The ability to eat glass, drink acid. The ability to hibernate. The ability to reduce body temperature by half. The ability to raise body heat enough to melt ice. The ability to heal with extraordinary rapidity. To be cut and not feel a thing.  To take terrible mutilation.

Then come gifts like being able to play with wild lions. To get a crowd to backdown with one’s presence.

Then comes gifts so incredible they are legend. For example the ability to shapeshift. Many such we have spoken of in earlier articles. Like the ability to enter into bodies...

The Power of The Deeper Self

{The Body Consciousness today is rarely seen in its true force... And that is because daily life rarely needs physical courage, grace, or deep connectivity to nature... to the shaktis... }

The Ego: Shaped by Soul Directive. Formed in Early Years. Tested by Life:
The ego begins with an inspired projection of the Soul, and multi-life influence. This is extended by soul choices like bodies, culture, era, country… But obviously early childhood experience, parental touch, sibling interaction, can greatly modify this core… and while the soul in its pre-life choice of a life takes much of this into consideration, the possibilities are immense.  Damaging child abuse can cause the ego to malform or go through painful trajectories.

Now the ego, in some traditions is seen as just muck beneath the soul's chappals. Far from it. From human spiritual growth or even soul-acceleration, it is a critical battleground. Are you being peaceful because you are scared, or peaceful because you are assured? Do you talk peace but scream at fellow men? Do you see the divine in animals but destroy their habitat? Are you being generous to extract something from God, or generous because your heart is big? These questions are tricky for all of us.

No the Ego is not a mere appendage. Perhaps the image of Lord Indra or Lord Krishna as charioteer gives one the true sense of how critical the ego and its challenges are.

Let us illustrate: A computer engineer in the 90's had a choice, skyrocket to being a Fortune 500 CEO or give up her career for her special child. What would she do? The second option is what many would go for... But what if you know it would lead to a broken marriage, living on dole in an ugly part of America, seeing your other 2 children barely escape gang violence... What then? These choices challenge us so deeply, the ego is forced to reach into extraordinary deeps... Where Soul, Shakti, Titans, Heroes, Yogis, Gods lie sleeping...

Now there comes a point where the self begins to delve deep demand so much of itself and its world that other portions of itself begin to be revealed.

Perhaps there is a sense of inner grace, perhaps there is responsibility that catapults growth, perhaps helplessness so profound something beyond has to appear. And appear it will and can. Be it the body consciousness that sips at acid. Or a mind that crunches numbers faster than a supercomputer, or a self that seems to know the whole pattern of life as if it were a game.

The Higher Ego: Not A Simple Oneness, but a complex of many perspectives:
The higher self, the egoic twin, the soul as described variously in literature is rarely directly encountered. But its presence often seen in dreams. Of course dreams may have the body consciousness, the ego or higher ego all speaking.

The higher self often reveals itself in greater clarity, deep impulses on life purpose… “I hate cats so why did I pick up a cat? I have 12 cats now. Er why? Because I know that cat and I were brother & sister in another place. The cats have made more wild, caring & human. Sometimes I have a feeling someone’s looking out for me. A Cat Goddess? Or a part of me that stalks eternity with cat paws?”

Now higher souls or egos can increasingly be difficult to incorporate as their perspectives are so strange. For example, ‘A mother and son have a difficult interaction. Is it just because her husband died in a car crash and the son was partly responsible? No, but principally because her son was a lover who betrayed her in another life. The time she fed her child as a baby was both beautiful and orgiastic, mother & child, mother & lover. Unknowingly, because the deeper self gives her ego glimpses of the deeper interaction, she places the child in situations where he has to choose her over another. Over a lover, over a friend, over a career.’ {Note Sexes changed, circumstances shifted to mask the family}.

Putting The Focus on The Egos:
Now these many selves are an extraordinarily useful ladder for higher order spiritual growth.  And they form the third stage spiritual growth booster.

According to the Jihad Al Akbar, The Prophet returning, with his troops after a war said, “We return from the small struggle, to the great struggle.” Consider this: The Prophet is addressing, dusty, bloody, wounded soldiers who had just fought a brutal war of hand-to hand combat. Having slashed, axed, tripped, stabbed, battered, enemies. Adrenal is pumping, many have limbs, cut, gashes, blinded... and they are being told that that battle is the lesser one. That the greater one is still ahead of them. And what is the greater war? The struggle against Nafs or many souls, many egos. And what was the struggle? To align the lesser, but essential egos to the greater truth.

The plucking of a Jain nun’s hair, the poverty rites of Swami’s and monks do precisely this, but to really harness the power of egoic and transegoic growth, one needs to sense the full tree of Nafs, the structure of many selves in our self.

Practically many in India tend to fast, at least twice a month. Does this tap a chakra. Yes. The Navel and Foot. But that is not the purpose of it. The real purpose is to get the body consciousness self to come alive and to disengage the ego from a nadi connected to the root.

The lack of an egoic language means that many tend to miss out on the formidable psychic power, and spiritual grace of The Western Magical Tradition. The most significant focus of The Western Tradition, Magical & Scientific is on the development of The Will.

Turning  The Many Egos into a Ladder to The Divine:
How many egos and selves do we have? As a simplification 3, body-mind-spirit. But truly there are 10 in the kabbalic tradition, 17 if we include the full spectrum.

There are basically a few standard techniques of egoic transformation.

  • Denial of Desire. Throwing the seeker into strange sexual encounters.
  • Using Panic, Fear and Death.
  • Shift from selfish to selfless action.
  • Change of direction and values. 
  • Change of world & world view & social groups.
  • Shift from self to self.

Put like that it sounds reasonable…

What The Guru Asks of The Student:
St Francis of Assisi to the modern mind is one of those cuddly teddy bearish spiritual beings… He loved nature, gave sermons to birds, bees, befriended a terrifying wolf… So if you had entrusted your spiritual journey how would he treat your soul. Tenderly right? 

When St Francis of Assisi took on neophytes they had to give up all wealth. To spurn wealth. In one case they were asking for funds for a charitable cause. Francis felt one neophyte felt a coin a few seconds longer. He snatched the coin from the monk’s fingers, tossed it on a pile of cowshit, and got the monk to pick the coin from the steaming pile of shit with his lips.

Because Buddhists and Lord Buddha is portrayed as in deep peace, we imagine the path to be one strewn with lotus petals…

Milarepa the great Tibetan master was given the task by his master of building a stone cottage with his hands 7 times and having to tear it down 7 times.

To realize how terrible the egoic thrashing was imagine picking up some 1000 to 5000 stones, carrying them up a hill, struggling with heavy logs to form the roof, lashing it down in a fierce mountain wind… Not once but 7 times and each time having to rip it apart. How many times would you or I last? Building ½ a house? But why you may ask was Milarepa so ill-used by his master? Consider this, Milarepa before he met his guru was able to get storm to listen to him. So when a relative attacked him, he retaliated with a thunderstorm which killed 30-40 people. Take elemental force that extreme, and an ego unable to control its rage, how many would Milarepa scythe through next? And what would happen to Milarepa in life after life?

A seeker pestered Babaji to join his group. The legendary master told the seeker to leap off a cliff. The seeker did. Babaji walked down to where the dying seeker lay and revived him.

Do Celia & I expect you to pick shit with your mouth, tear 7 cottages, and leap off cliffs? Here is a Creator’s Child session dealing with The Ego and many selves, experienced of the Fantastic Four, a set of four adepts who have been exploring for 10 years. It is related by Tanya…

The Fantastic Four See The Ego Growing to Awakening:
“Fantastic Four were back! This time around for a 6 month long causal body workshops under cosmic heart program with our teachers Tarun (on the white board) and Celia (on the chair) and through half sessions Buffy, who left us in between. These workshops took the “seeing” to another level for all of us, some more intense than others.

“The more we experienced, saw, and confirmed, less blind we were.

“In one of the sessions, Tarun asked all of us to see the ego of a renowned Spiritualist who lived a long time ago and the revelations were fascinating.

“Ashwin started with the early years of the person and saw (felt) his ego to be heavy & deep, there was no movement.

“Then Shweta &  Ravi sensed the ego during a particular life transition period of the person and they both confirmed ego in movement in a particular pattern, a pattern of lotus or some other geometry.

“I was asked to sense the ego when the figure gained enlightenment and seemed like fireworks upwards from a point at the bottom, more like a wellspring to the sky.”

This joyous session, will help you feel the bright, joyous side of awakening. Of egoic growth. But make no mistake moving above life’s morass to soul freedoms is far from easy.

Each of these 4 adepts were tested by ghostly beings. The kind that lock damp lips on extremities. How else do you go beyond the astral. Each of these were tested by astral traps, by passions so intense one wishes to tear off one’s clothes in the middle of the street. Each faced, death, disease, humiliation…

Do Celia & I expect you to pick shit with your mouth, tear 7 cottages, and leap off cliffs? Well, not really. But sometimes we ask worse of you and ourselves.

Tormented by a brother-in-law, almost committed to a mental asylum by him, a seeker has been asked to forgive him. Not embrace him, not be less than wary… But to forgive. To see herself and him in full perspective. Can she do it? Will she do it?  And if she cannot will she be crippled, spiritually? Answer is not really. But if you are marching deep into enemy territory and you leave an enemy fort on the route unconquered it can snap your supply line. 

The Truth is finally we have to look fear in the eye. Know anguish and not fall prey to it. Feel desire’s full rage and not be consumed. Engage with life, but look beyond age-old hatreds. We have to feel a killing rage but be willing to bless.

A spiritual seeker, was a great soldier. But not unnaturally having fought bitter wars with Xstan and Yna, he is ferociously patriotic. And that is good. But will his patriotism be destroyed by hatred? An exercise we gave him involves guiding 6 soldiers brave as him to the light. Some are enemy, some friends, some terrorists, some spies… Now he is highly influential and inspires think-tanks and so may formulate strategies that inflict terrible damage on aggressors. But when he does so, he will not do so out of hate. But of a willingness to engineer a true peace on ferocious foundations.

War n peace

{Germany-England, Jap-Chinese, India-Pakistan... deep seated, deep-raging conflicts are the egoes greatest challenge, for there is realism and idealism, finding a balance in the earthly world is tricky...}

The Egos and a Game Called Life:
Now all this talk of Crazy Gurus, impossible sacrifice, leaping off cliffs, may make one gibber with fear… or run for the hills.

The simple truth is that Life is a training program designed to help souls discover their true miraculousness.

And Life is Beautiful, and Life is Ugly.

Some of our most magnificent students are those terribly abused as children. Many shine the brightest. Brilliant musicians, writers, businessmen, politicians…

Childhood is romanticized. But easy? A seeker spoke of how bullies would crush his balls in class. But this sense of being crushed makes him a teddybear who will lift up many.

Teenagehood can be lovely. But we can go left or right. One of our seekers had turned into a brutal fighter. Left he could have become a mafia don, who killed a child. Right he is a communicator who inspires.

First Love, can be so wonderful. And heart-aching. Pushing you beyond you.

And then you enter the workplace. And you do magnificently, but your great success turns to sawdust as you crush competition and some fool kills himself. Or encounter terrible bosses who can crack egos like peanuts. Or meet a colleague who sticks a hand between your… and the office sniggers as there is no proof but everybody knows… Or perhaps you delight in crazy orgies at office with hideous consequences.

Or what if you make a bid for real power. Come up with a brilliant innovation, make shitloads of money and discover everything get swept away in a wave of cocaine and gambling…

And when you think it cannot get worse you lose a child, to, is it divorce or illness? Find your mind go ripped apart by schizophrenia or plain despair?

You live on and love your grandkids at your knee? Or is it worse as you live to see your kids suck your money out and throw you on the street.

Or maybe it is just old age and your friends drop like flies. Or just disease worse than torture.

Life is a game of Snakes and Ladders. But is its purpose to enmesh? Or liberate?

Stand Tall

{The Ego uses achievement as a measure of growth... But true egoic growth uses a higher standard... Success but morally or rather spiritually sound...}

Did you know the game of Snakes and Ladders all of us play is actually an esoteric technique to guide seekers, to help them free themselves of the shackles of the ego? Ok do some research, which sage was designed to have made this board game? Ok, now for our adepts, which divine form devised the game of life in front of 9/10ths of mankind today.

If you look at it truly, the book of SMILEnces we just presented you with is precisely that… A book of Ladders and Snakes… If you have not picked it up, you should… for it is life’s many stages… And how to dance above it…

Tailpiece: We think of ourselves as me…  Beneath the bedsheet you see the many bedfellows that make up the illusion of I… What will you do with this knowledge?

The Soul has wings… And life has children about rip the dragonfly’s wings off.  Eventually, the game between wings and cruel fingers leads to soaring… For some this eventually is one lifetime… for others 10,000 years…

 

 

By Celia & Tarun Cherian