The self and the Self
We all have that sense that we are something much deeper than what we can perceive with our five senses or mind. But any glimpse we get is fleeting, and we often discount feelings, flashes of insight or sensed synchronicity as simply our imagination. It is so much easier to believe that we are the sum total of our thoughts, our emotions, our physical body and our possessions. Its easy to associate with our culture, gender, vocation or other social groups. All of these things help define our ego, or sense of self. But all these things are impermanent and superficial. They are not who we ARE.
We are DIVINE. We are all part of the same universal energy. We are beautiful timeless divine beings experiencing humanity via our mind, body and emotions. We have simply forgotten who we are. This is one interpretation of the story of Adam and Eve: when they ate the apple, they no longer lived in unity with the divine energy of the universe, but instead saw themselves as separate beings made up of the trappings of man.
In ancient yogic texts, there is reference to the kleshas, or obstacles to returning back to a place of unity, back to a place where we connect with, and experience, our divine Self. The first of these kleshas is Avidya, or ignorance. This is the great forgetting – no longer knowing we are in fact divine. Believing that our thoughts, emotions, possessions and human form are all that we are. Believing that we are impermanent, believing we are separate.
Yoga nidra enables us to retreat to a place where we go beyond the body and mind, returning back to our divine presence, or big S Self. In a place of deep stillness, we quiet the clamor of our mind and the world around us. We open a door and, with repeated visits, spend more and more time with our true Self. We begin to understand ourselves at a much deeper level, letting go of fears and attachments. We can participate in the human experience from a deep place of knowing, a place of unity. Our lives are transformed.