Burst into singing all ye lands,
for the time of awakening is here.
SELFHOOD, SURRENDER, and the JOURNEY TO WHOLENESS
Julie of Light Omega
Just as a circle appears to have no beginning or end, so too does the spiritual evolution of souls bring the developed soul back to its point of origin, making it appear to the casual observer that it might have been possible to traverse this circle in another way, or perhaps to eliminate it altogether. Such an observer might speculate that it could have been possible to join the threads of beginning and end in a way that did not involve so much time or distance between the two.
Such speculation, however, would not be the case, for the distance traveled from beginning to end of the circle and, indeed, what makes the joining of the two points possible, are the developments that take place in the course of the passage. This passage itself is composed of the history of spiritual evolution on both individual and collective levels. It consists of the various stages of consciousness which allow the embodied soul to become self-aware and to develop a more refined sense of its own uniqueness.
The feature of self-awareness is not an incidental one, but is fundamental to the soul's journey. For the complexity of thought and emotion that a person experiences as part of life make up much of what we consider to be their character, and while character is not spirit, it is meant to reflect its spiritual origins. Therefore, the progression of self-development proceeds along lines of character development, with the soul learning more and more about what is important to value in life and what can be discarded.
To arrive at a heightened sense of selfhood may be equated to the ripening of a fruit which, in its earlier stages, is still a fruit, but does not have the fullness of taste, aroma, texture, or color that it will have later on when it matures. So, too, does the soul who takes on a physical body need to ripen and mature so that the inner qualities which exist in potential can develop fully and contribute to the individual's sense of themselves and what they have come here to do.
The growth of self-awareness is simultaneously an experience of learning for the soul as well as for the embodied self, for it is not just the personality that lives through the various experiences of life, but the soul as well. Indeed, the two are never separate, even though they may be experienced as such. From its own vantage point, the soul is continually accumulating knowledge about the state of existence within multiple dimensions of reality, including the physical. As it does so, it expands in consciousness and in its capacity to carry the light that exists within its deeper core.
Even if the personality-self knows nothing of spiritual development, and even if belief in a divine Source is never fully articulated, nonetheless, the purpose of the soul's journey is always a spiritual purpose. That this purpose proceeds blindly and mutely for many incarnations is the truth of the human experience for most embodied souls. Yet eventuality, even for those whose time of awakening takes somewhat longer, the point is reached at which the soul and the personality come closer together, making it possible for a new way of life to begin on earth and for greater communication to take place between the soul and the embodied being.
With respect to completing the circle, the embodied self must first travel far in the direction of self-awareness, even to the point of forgetfulness of the original unity from which it came. This becomes necessary in order that the proper maturation of self-aware individuality can take place, and in order that full freedom of choice, based on this individuality, can be arrived at. For without awareness of feelings or thoughts, choice becomes severely restricted. And so freedom and individual expression go hand in hand as developments within the soul's journey; and individuality and awareness go hand in hand, making possible the eventual completion of the movement toward unity.
This movement takes place in stages. At a certain point in the soul's journey, all points of individualized expression that the embodied self seeks to explore have been explored, and all yearnings for freedom as a separated self have been met. At this point, the embodied soul begins to realize that something is missing, still, and begins to seek the larger context of self-identity that can only be arrived at through identification within a greater Whole.
This turning toward unity and the desire to surrender the separated self cannot happen before the embodied self has explored its options in complete freedom. It can only happen when the ripening has taken place which allows the soul to recognize that the wholeness it seeks cannot be fully arrived at as long as it experiences itself as separate from Creator and Creation. It is this recognition that creates the turning point, and that manifests the path of return.
Surrender of the separated self, therefore, comes to each soul eventually as a desire for the completion of its own purpose for existing. It may not be apparent as a desire or as a purpose within any given lifetime, yet one lifetime does not summarize the whole, and within the entire incarnational sequence, the movement toward unity will inevitably take place, once the soul has reached a certain degree of maturation. Before then, there may be conflicts about surrender, both ideological and emotional, but these conflicts relate to a stage in personal development, and eventually they give way before the desire for greater wholeness.
There are, of course, interfering factors in the human experience which have to do with the efforts of darkness to keep souls separate and to maintain the illusion that only in separation can freedom exist. These efforts have been very successful over many millennia in preventing souls from experiencing the truth of their Divine origins and the meaning of oneness. Nevertheless, the striving of darkness to maintain separation and to prevent a return to Source has been foreseen from the beginning of the creation of human beings and the planet they occupy. It was also known that these efforts, in the end, would not prevail, no matter how much they tried to keep souls from experiencing a deeper truth.
Today, as always, the choice of which identity to hold remains an individual one, and there may be some who still believe that freedom can only exist in separation. Nevertheless, these positions must be looked at from the standpoint of a learning process, and so what is deeply felt today may become something else tomorrow. Such is the history of the soul's journey through time and space – a journey that will ultimately bring all souls to the point of return to the one true Source that is their spiritual origin and home.
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