Authenticity and Spiritual Awakening

The first time I heard the Voice for God and consciously knew what It was, was at the moment I came out to myself as a lesbian. I was seventeen years old, three months out of high school and infatuated – once again – with a woman. I said to myself, “You know this means you are a lesbian” and a still, quiet Voice in my mind said, “I know.” I felt a rush of relief and I felt joy for the first time in my life. It was as though a curtain was pulled back and I allowed myself to see who I really was for the first time.

The world is an illusion. Those who choose to come to it are seeking for a place where they can be illusions, and avoid their own reality. (W-155.2)

The self I saw then was not my True Self, but my human self, my ego, the illusion of myself. In time, as I learned the Truth that I am Part of God, I wondered about that moment. Why would the Holy Spirit bother to be with me when what I was revealing to myself was not Truth?

There is a conflict we all have in the world with our human identities: Do you live your life authentically – true to your own personal human nature -- and risk rejection from others? Or do you conform to what your family, church and/or culture or society dictate for the sake of being accepted by them? Which is more in line with spiritual awakening?

The answer is that an authentic life is more in line with spiritual awakening because to live inauthentically is to repress. Repression is a tool the ego uses to hold your attention on it, to keep guilt and lack in your mind and to keep you from God. Let’s look at how it does this:

Since you made the ego it needs your belief to “survive”. It doesn’t care if you love it or if you hate it, but you must give it your attention. Repression is a tool of the ego because it doesn’t release you from what you don’t like about yourself, but hides it from you and/or from others, making sure you don’t get rid of it. It takes a lot of energy to do this, and this energy is expended on the ego, which it loves.

Of course, what you repress is what you think is “bad” or “wrong” or “sinful” about yourself. You feel guilty about it, and holding on to whatever you repress holds on to the guilt. If you repress for the sake of being accepted by others, then you believe you lack love and you need to “get” it from others. This is an illusion, since love is always within you and you learn you have it not by getting it from others, but by giving it to others.

God is within you, but if you feel guilty, you will not go within because you will not want to see the horrors you have hidden there. This the ego knows well and it always counsels you to not look within. Moreover, if you feel guilty you fear God, a necessary condition for the “survival” of the ego.

An authentic life is not in itself spiritual awakening. But a person living an authentic life is more likely to be open to God’s Love and a person who decides to open to God’s Love eventually realizes they must release themselves from repression to experience It.

The ego makes no sense, and the Holy Spirit does not attempt to understand anything that arises from it. Since He does not understand it, He does not judge it, knowing that nothing the ego makes means anything. (T-9.III.3)

Judging the form that ego takes is no different than embracing it because it makes it real to you. You release ego by letting it be. It makes no difference to God what your ego is since it is never real. Only God is real.

The Holy Spirit being there at the moment I came out to myself saved me years of wondering if I was okay with God. I never seriously thought that God cared that I was a lesbian. Three years later I was a student of A Course in Miracles and experienced the holy relationship. If I had been busy with repression and guilt I would never have been open to seeing my holiness reflected in another. This is why the Holy Spirit was with me even when I was uncovering a facet of an illusion about myself. It was a step in the direction of awakening.

God takes you where you are and welcomes you. What more could you desire, when this is all you need? (M-26.4)

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Comments

Monica said…
Again well said. thank you!

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