At last, the soul is ready for the final leg of the journey: the return to unity and the end of reincarnation.
This return to unity does not involve any loss of individuality, as some imagine. The end of reincarnation — “ascension” or “enlightenment” or what have you — does not mean fading out of existence, dissolving into nothingness. Rather, the soul completes its adventure as a unique individual, like a distinctive star in the night sky, a completely realised Self.
So to begin this stage, the soul will tend to focus on true self-expression and self-actualization, seeking experiences which provide personal fulfilment within life on the physical plane. This could be found in, say, acting, painting, wine-growing, gardening, flying old aeroplanes, or simply being a grandparent. The soul is not interested in success or fame so much as doing something it loves well, and finding inner satisfaction.
Then, towards the end of the stage, there is more of an emphasis on teaching rather than simply learning: passing on the lessons learnt, showing others the way.
A must read, by the way!
I’ve just read this wonderful article and have come away with more questions than answers, as per usual. I have qualities and defects that fit in every stage, but do not feel fit to even assume myself a first-stage soul. I am an enigma to myself. Could it be that I am a soul that reincarnated prematurely and am still in embryonal stage, but who was raised by two old souls? Another conundrum.
Thangkas are portable paintings of Buddhist deities. Traditionally mounted in a brocade fabric, they are rolled up and taken along on journeys. Each Thangka we sell is hand painted in Kathmandu Nepal by a Tibetan artisan who has studied for years with master thangka painters. Wonna buy? See the link!
Appointing a file clerk: I was rearranging assorted neurons in my spidery attic, trying to establish some semblance of order, but I soon threw my electron arms up in the air, in despair. I might as well rename those neurons(or morons?), which govern my thought processes, “ludicrons”! It was then, that I remembered something, which my Gran, who was the wisest of women, had told me once. She had said, that if I ever had trouble remembering something, or if I wanted to organise my attic, that I should appoint an imaginary file clerk, name him, and then I would be able to summon him at will, later on. I might as well give this a try, but I did not envy the poor sod his task, which was gargantuan. I hope, that he has better luck than Sisyphus.I named him Bob, gave him an office in my subconscious and left him there to get on with it. A subconscious can be handy sometimes, if you want to relegate a job, that you had rather not do yourself.
This mental labour had as yet left me childless, except perhaps for Bob. I therefore decided to try my hand at meditation. However, my hand proved to be an uncooperative, little so-and-so. The more I tried, the more I did not succeed. But then, I had long ago swept the notion of a void, a vacuum or nothingness under the carpet, for the dust mites to gnaw on. I finally let go and immersed myself in my favourite state of Zen, to be at one with the all, the whole, which has no frontiers of any kind(I greeted Captain Pickard, while I was there!).
This reminded me of a supplicant, who had come to the Dalai Lama, filled to the brim with questions. The latter had remarked, that the man was so full of questions as to leave no room for any answers. To let go is the key, but is far from easy! I thought to myself, that my wish for peace and tranquility was a tad futile in an ever changing universe. This left me, if not at peace, then at least with a modicum of well-being.
Next, I was transported to Elisabeth Gilbert´s book: Eat, Pray, Love, which sports an anecdote about a guru, who when complained to by his disciples, that a kitten was disturbing their meditation with its meowing, had consigned the kitten to be bound to a tree, out of hearing. This seemed to me to miss the point. Granted, it is far easier to achieve peace of mind, when all outside stimuli have been removed. But should one not seek to be able to achieve this cherished state even, or perhaps especially, when one finds oneself in the middle of New York´s central station? For is not life filled with distractions and tribulations? I thought, that the point of meditation was to help someone deal with life, in all its confusion.
Right, Bob, you may file this under the disjointed ramblings of a tired old soul! I wish you all the peace you can find.And if you should discover its hiding place, could you contact yours truly and divulge this most treasured information(perhaps you would also be kind enough as to include a map)?
- Halil: BBC News – Scientists at MIT replicate brain activity with chip (bbc.co.uk)
- Mind Relaxation ~ 5 Life Changing Reasons to Meditate Regularly (mediumsworld.wordpress.com)
- Neurons That Fire Together Wire Together (qflf.wordpress.com)
- Computer chip that replicates brain activity brings AI closer to reality (news.bioscholar.com)
- Teaching The Neurons To Meditate (tricitypsychology.com)
- Meditation: Small Dose, Big Effect (psychologytoday.com)