Finding Your soul


by Jayaram V

If you, your life and all that you have is a storm, the center of that storm, where there is perfect calm and peace and where nothing happens, is your Self. Jayaram V

The soul or self is one of the most commonly used words in daily life.

Most people in the world believe in souls, ghosts, (and zombies).

Depending upon which religion you practice, you may have your own concept of soul.

In some traditions a soul has a distinct form, substance and individuality.

Jainas believe that souls have different sizes depending upon which bodies they occupy. Thus, according to them the soul of an elephant is much bigger than the soul of a rabbit or squirrel.

The Buddhists of course, do not believe in souls at all. They believe in the nonexistence of soul, which is known as the doctrine of Anatma or not-self. Hindus prefer calling the soul as self because it has no qualities attributes and individuality.

For the atheists and materialists, the mind is the soul of the body. There is nothing beyond the mind that can be consciously experienced and analyzed.

The following discussion is a simplified concept of soul or self. It is presented to remove all the complexity associated with the subject of self-realization or self-awareness.

Here, I am not raising any dispute about what a soul is. I leave that matter to you. You have to find it yourself and tell the world what your soul is like.

I am presenting here a way to reach your soul and find it in yourself. It is a journey, which you have to perform and complete.

The method has been practiced in India for at least 5000 years. I have tried to simplify it as much as possible.

You do not have to wait to know your soul until you are dead. However, it is up to you whether you want to do it now, later or never.

Before we go to the method, it is important to affirm that the soul, or the self, is not different or distinct from you.

Your inner self is a state of your consciousness different from your wakeful consciousness just as your sleep is.

It is your deepest aspect, or your hidden aspect.

You do not know it because it is hidden behind a lot of mental flux.

Your mind and senses are not greatly helpful in seeing it.

In fact, they do not let you see it. Hence many people will never know their hidden selves when they are alive.

You cannot perceive your self with your mind or senses.

To see the self, you must stop seeing outside and stop grasping things from the objective world.

Instead, you need to slowdown and begin to look deep within yourself, which you can do in three ways, namely concentration, meditation and concentrated meditation. The last one is often called Samyama.

While practicing them, your aim should be to make your mind come to a total rest.

You can do it in two ways, by forcibly preventing your thoughts from entering your mind by restraining your mind and senses, or by letting it do whatever it wants to do, while you remain a passive and detached observer, until your mind is fully exhausted and ceases to be active.

You can choose any of these methods.

However, you will not go far on the path even with them, unless you also practice detachment, dispassion, self-control and mental renunciation.

The calmer you become. the greater is the progress, which means you must practice silence.

The silence you must practice in this regard is not the ordinary silence. You have to silence both your mind and body and all the activities associated with them.

When you establish it firmly and arrest all the movements of your mind and body, you will discover the center of calm in you.

When you enter it, you will experience perfect peace, stability, aloneness, and awareness without knowing.

Each of these words used here has a specific significance and meaning and you will understand them when you make progress.

That center of calm is your soul or self, and in that are hidden all the secrets of your past and future and eternity itself.

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