What IS a soul?

    Friday, January 25, 2008, 9:01 AM [General]

    It’s hard to answer a question like this without regurgitating whatever we’ve been taught on such matters or spouting some reaction to such beliefs. What we really need to do is to rise above logical arguments and emotional reaction  . . . but even those of us on a quest for truth and aware of the manipulations of our mind find that difficult! But we have to try:

    I used to think that our DNA was the physical manifestation of our soul, that our genes were our unique material self corresponding to our true spiritual nature. I’m not so sure now.

    Many theories about human souls see them as not just unique to each of us, but separate: that they come back in body after body in a series of linear lives. Whilst accepting that many religions hold such ideas firmly, I’ve never been too comfortable with it. I’ve always felt that ‘I’ came from ‘The Source’ and will return there when I die.

    I would certainly agree that our soul is our divine essence, the ‘bit’ of us that lives on after death. Key here is that notion that this divine spark within us is part of ‘The One-ness’. Our soul is interconnected to absolutely every other bit of life, the universe and everything. This to me is the truth that rings most true: our inner being is not some separate thing: it’s but a drop in the ocean of life itself, a grain of sand on the beach of creation. This is vital in how I now perceive soul: as ‘soul’, not ‘a soul’. This distinction is small but significant.

    Within religious circles there is often debate as to whether animals have souls. Personally I feel it’s typical human arrogance to think that it’s only humans who have this divine essence. Why should we be any different to the rest of God’s creations?

    But it’s not just animals capable of (at least some) thought and feeling. Why should the line be drawn there? Since life just IS . . . and embraces all things, surely everything has soul? We, you and I, are as connected to the planet’s eco-system and our pet cats as we are to our best friend or lover . . . at the level of soul, spirit, universal energy of life .. . or whatever you want to call it.

    Take this PC that I’m writing this message on. It most certainly has a mind of its own! How often does an electronic gadget seem to not work at critical moments? As I’ve become more aware of my own thoughts, at so many levels, and at how life responds to them, I’m increasingly coming to the conclusion that God is continually using his/her presence in all things to give me messages. For example, to help me to not send e-mails when I’m not at peace with myself . . . to make me stop and calm down. I’m beginning to not just think but feel that absolutely everything is infused with soul, with God’s presence and through this we’re being guided and supported on our own soul’s growth.

    So, that’s where I stand at present . . . though with the proviso that ‘soul’ is still only a word, a human concept. If is does exist, in whatever form, it just IS . . . so why don’t we just let it get on with being and stop trying to label and define it!

    Keith Beasley, 23.1.08

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    What choice do we have?

    Sunday, January 20, 2008, 3:51 AM [General]

    In my 21 years of being on a personal journey (I'm now 49) my experiences keep challenging my idea of Free Will: more and more I see that the concept most of us cling to is deeply flawed, that 'Free Will' is one of the most misunderstood ideas around. Indeed maybe it's a total illusion! For what choice do we really have in our lives?

    We can choose to do God's will  . . . or not. That's it. All other opportunities to exercise our perceived Free Will boil down to this.

    OK, we can choice to rephrase this into words that better reflects our beliefs, for example: We can choose to immerse ourselves in the one-ness of life, align ourselves to the Tao and consciously aspire to BE our true, whole, divine self . . . interconnected to all others . . . or we can insist on being separate.

    Or: We can choice to listen to our inner voice, our soul's divine wisdom, in all we say, think and do . . . or we can allow our conscious mind to be driven by wilful desires, by misplaced notions that we're in control of our lives, by selfish wants or the idea that our human minds can in any way really understand 'life'.

    But what does this mean in practice? How do we exercise these choices day-to-day, moment by moment? My last twelve hours give a very real, and deeply felt, example:

    Last night I went to bed frustrated at not being 'allowed' to move on in my life: I know I'm at the start of a new phase but, if I listen to my inner knowing, I have to accept neither I, nor others in the bigger picture, are ready for this new phase yet. But I was impatient  to get the change underway . . . even doubting that the change was right. So I went to bed heavy . . . but sent myself to sleep with healing. This morning I woke up more accepting of my fate: knowing that the move was coming  . . . but also that I had to wait until 'the time was right'.

    I also felt the need to share these thoughts with others. So I logged on to Belief-net and found a message from judithorloffmd about a video of hers about . . .  you've guessed it . . . free will! Being on a slow Internet connection, I haven't had change to view it yet, but it all fits together doesn't it!

    Blessings

    Keith
    www.alarveowl.com

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