Our soul is who we really are. It is our authentic self – also referred to by many other names including our true self, awareness, original self, inner self, authentic self, essence, instinctual self, spirit, innate knowing, higher consciousness, vibrational self, essential nature, Self, organic self, inner being, psyche, higher self, true nature, intuitive self, inner knowing, innate wisdom, and sacred self.

It may seem paradoxical, but we all need to work at being who we really are – our authentic, original, soulful selves. We each intrinsically encompass a source of unconditional love within, it’s just that we are unaware, busy maintaining self-protective mechanisms and blocking our true capacity and potential. To a large extent, it seems as if we are encouraged not to listen to the callings of our inner knowing, and to be wary of trusting something as intangible as our intuition.

When we are not listening to life from our inner awareness, our attention is focused externally and we are often living on autopilot. We respond to situations based upon our prior conditioning, which acts like a kind of archaic life map. This map is populated by beliefs we have inherited, and perceptions we hold based upon early templates of relationship. When we are unaware of our conditioning it runs in the background of our minds like a program preceding automatic responses. Until we come to understand this, it is easy to get stuck in suffering. The thing about this however, is that it is not who we really are. We are not our suffering, and we are not our conditioning.

“Knowing more about the soul and its mysteries you could free yourself from the fascination which makes you suffer.” – Carl Jung

The socially constructed conditioned mind influences us to focus on thoughts about our differences rather than our alikeness and shared humanity. Making assumptions and placing judgements upon oneself and others comes from our ego and generates separation from the soul and from our authenticity. Experiencing this separation is painful and causes much suffering, because when we disconnect from our truth, we’re living in our falsehood, identified with the ego and disconnected from the core of who we are. From our inner being.

“Behind everyone’s learned behaviours and odd eccentricities lurks a soul, ready to make contact if only coaxed out through a crack in the ego” – Ram Dass

Mental health issues and dis-ease arise when we become stuck functioning in a state of misalignment and fragmentation. This state of dysfunction is precipitated by our beliefs about who we think we are. The beliefs we hold If we don’t address the underlying disconnection from soul then we end up just coping. Coping is not really living however, it is simply managing the separation from our soul and surviving, and it perpetuates further disconnection from the source of unconditional love within. To live out our purpose and thrive requires letting go of our conditioned mind and getting acquainted with our essential nature.

“Not the world, not what’s outside of us, but what we hold inside traps us. We may not be responsible for the world that created our minds, but we can take responsibility for the mind with which we create our world.”

– Gabor mate

Developing the courage to reconnect with our true self, means listening to, taking responsibility for, and paying compassionate attention toward our Self. This means honouring, nourishing, supporting, and respecting our true nature. By attending to our inner self and doing ‘the work’, we place ourselves back on our rightful, authentic and most soulful path. A path that allows us to heal through experiencing our natural energy, and becoming radiant, joyful, healthy, and wise.