How well do we really know ourselves and who do we think we are? What masks do we use and put up for the sake of social conformity and appearance, attention-seeking and acceptance (especially on social media), ego trips and ambition in the pursuit of desires and wants that are not even our “own” but based on social conditioning, insecurities and wounds? People always say, “just be yourself!” which is most often mistaken for the conditioned ego personality. Do we really know who we truly are to begin with? How honest and sincere are we really with ourselves? Not honest in the sense of having no secrets, but in the sense of truly understanding and seeing oneself as one is, seeing the lies, illusions, assumptions and beliefs we have about the world and ourselves – our (unconscious) conditioning and programming.
Life on planet earth may seem like a prison but essentially it is like a school from a soul evolutionary perspective, a rough one at times, but a school non the less. We all have different lessons to learn and different parts to play. Not one person is alike and what works for one may not work for another. There are people whose soul lessons do not seem to entail waking up in this cycle, but who have a different “inner wiring”, and there are others who are naturally drawn to esoteric self-work and seeking truth who have the “seed”, so to speak. Many are called but few choose to answer the call.
The process of awakening is not a walk in the park. Yet, there seems to be some sort of thread that becomes clearer the more one becomes clearer with oneself, dislodging the conditioning, programming and healing deep rooted wounds and trauma. During the process of conscious inner work there are moments of clarity here and there – of more objective understanding and embodied knowing – of true Love, as suddenly the true self makes its appearance [the “psychic being” according to Sri Aurobindo], but it can easily hide away again at the next “trigger” that activates our mechanical reactive personality, the ego with its self-importance, reactionary behaviors and conditioned habits, or self-calming (addictions), spiritual bypassing and avoidance.
The goal of esoteric self-work is to be in this world but not of it, not to be persuaded by external influences of “official culture”, nor being mislead by false light teachings and spiritual deception, but to build the “inner cage” (esoterically speaking), the kingdom within, that keeps our connection to Knowledge and the Divine always intact as the soul comes to the front and the ego-personality takes its place in the “back”, essentially building the vessel to receive Gnosis, higher knowledge through embodied intuition and inner knowing as a transducer for Divine Will. Then nothing can disturb this inner equilibrium, nor do we keep looking for love, joy, and happiness outside ourselves.
However, while doing inner work and learning the lessons in our personal lives we also must not forget the bigger picture and what is happening in the world, for seeking “inner” truth goes in hand with seeking “outer” truth, and recognizing and discerning the lies within and without. Simply seeking inner peace and being passive while ignoring the outside world misses the point and that’s also where the danger and deception lies in many “New Age” teachings and distorted eastern spiritual practices these days.
In the end we’re all in this together, we’re all teachers and students alike, but we all have different lessons to learn and integrate. We can all assist each other in this work and do the best we can to move from ‘Service to Self’ to ‘Service to Others’, create community and be around like-minded people. On the path of awakening and sincere self-work people and long-time friends my fall out of one’s life to make room for new ones to enter. That is a normal process. As we change inside, the outer changes as well. It can get lonely at times and confusing, but there are assisting forces all around who guide and support if we can tune into them via our embodied sixth sense cognition outside the mind chatter.
Then there are the occult hostile forces that target anyone who is on the verge of a true awakening, trying to put him/her back to sleep, most often appearing as divine powers to create traps of agreement. As it is written: “Satan most often appears as an angel of Light”. So, discernment is key in the seen and unseen worlds.