The True Self: Resting in Awareness.

As I woke this morning, I re-realized that I passed my self-designated date to post on Perspective on Trauma. Like many other months I had a specific post in mind and spent time gathering supportive resources for my monthly article. But, like some other months, there is something that matters more. I find writing about the previously identified subject, won’t come.

Over the last week my husband experienced a profound loss. A loss that touches his life, and both of us deeply. Unexpected, painful, and currently impossible to understand we find ourselves navigating our days the best that we can. Checking in with each other, offering hugs, allowing tears, and listening as we wade forward.

Neither of us are strangers to loss, as will be true for many of you. Whether that is loss on a personal level or the losses we have all endured and been exposed to within the context of our current health crisis, social, and political climate. Loss to death is painful, impactful, and life altering. As, I think, is appropriate and normal.

I hold deep beliefs regarding spiritual life and simultaneously recognize the importance (in grief) of sharing these only if asked, and only when the other is ready to hear them. Grief is a personal journey, and while there are identified roadmaps, I find, we each need to approach this journey in our own way and in our own time. I am fortunate in the respect that L (my husband) and I hold similar beliefs. This, which is also normative, is not true for all others involved in this loss. I respect their believes very much, and hold ours near, as we make our way through this.

I have been thinking, this week, of the concept of resting in awareness and its application to grief and loss.  A practiced meditation (Inner Peace Meditation) narrated and guided by Deepak Chopra speaks beautifully of the soul (also known as our true self) and the concept of resting in awareness. He says, “The true self is that -which is never born and is not subject to death. The true self is that which many spiritual traditions call the soul. He further notes, “In Eastern Wisdom Traditions when we speak of the true-self we also know that it is ancient. It is unborn. That fire cannot burn it. That wind cannot dry it. Weapons cannot shatter it. It is not in space nor in time but is our eternal home. He then directs the listener to, “rest in being, rest in awareness, rest in the self beyond all descriptions, and all the roles you play as a human being”. He reminds, “You are not the roles you play. You are the alert witness. Awareness is consciousness in which those roles come and go as part of the scenery. Resting in awareness is also called waking up. Waking up from the projections we call mind, body, and the world”.

This brings me great comfort as I navigate the world in general and loss in particular. It is not a comfortable journey but one we will all make, often many times over, in our lifetime.  I have read in spiritual literature that our greatest lessons in life are wrapped in the way we show up to love one another. I find death is the greatest reminder of how we did or possibly did not show up. If we are paying attention, we will take much from this experience.

Death changes the living and, as the teachings offer, this is as it is meant to be.

David Kessler, in his book, Finding Meaning ~The Sixth Stage of Grief” eloquently discusses the loss of his son and his journey to find meaning after his heart wrenching loss. I believe this is the way loss is. It is a painful journey that can (if we attend to our emotions) unfold into a greater awareness of connectedness to our loved ones, others, and consciousness.

I believe the soul lives on in conscious awareness unshackled by the trappings of the roles we play and possibly the illusion this life is. As I write this I am reminded of the poem “Death is Nothing at All” by Henry Scott -Holland.

Death is nothing at all.
It does not count.
I have only slipped away into the next room.
Nothing has happened.

Everything remains exactly as it was.
I am I, and you are you,
and the old life that we lived so fondly together is untouched, unchanged.
Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.

Call me by the old familiar name.
Speak of me in the easy way which you always used.
Put no difference into your tone.
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

Laugh as we always laughed at the little jokes that we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word that it always was.
Let it be spoken without an effort, without the ghost of a shadow upon it.

Life means all that it ever meant.
It is the same as it ever was.
There is absolute and unbroken continuity.
What is this death but a negligible accident?

Why should I be out of mind because I am out of sight?
I am but waiting for you, for an interval,
somewhere very near,
just round the corner.

All is well.
Nothing is hurt; nothing is lost.

One brief moment and all will be as it was before.
How we shall laugh at the trouble of parting when we meet again!

_______________________________________________________________________

 It is this knowing that aides me in navigating the many rocky places this life holds and that reassures me that our loved ones live on, resting in conscious awareness, as we continue to learn.

 It is my hope, as always, that you found something that resonates with you here. I welcome your thoughts and experiences.

(Please note the meditation Inner Peace Meditation is listed in the resources section of this article, as is David Kessler’s meaningful book).

Deepest care to each of you,

LaDonna

Copyright Protected Material: © 2014 ~ 2021 LaDonna Remy MSW, LICSW. All rights reserved. Written content on this blog (Perspective on Trauma) is the property of the author LaDonna Remy, MSW, LICSW. Any unauthorized use or duplication without written permission of the author/ owner of this web log is prohibited. Excerpts or quotes may be shared in the event the author is fully cited with reference and direction to this blog.

Professional Disclaimer: It is important to recognize that all information contained in the Perspective on Trauma Blog is informational. It is not intended to provide advice, assessment, treatment, or diagnosis. Content is not intended as a substitute for clinical care. It is not possible to provide informed care through web content, or to engage in an informed treatment relationship within this format. If you or a loved one need support; it is important that you access this care from your own (specifically assigned) health care provider.

Agreement of Use: In consideration for your use of and access to the Perspective on Trauma Blog, you agree that LaDonna Remy MSW, LICSW is not liable to you for any action or non-action you may take in reliance upon information from the Perspective on Trauma blog. As noted, it is not possible to provide informed (personalized care) through blog content. In the event, support is needed it is your responsibility to seek care from your own health-care provider.

National Hotlines: 
Treatment Referral Helpline: (1-877-726-4727)
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-825

Photo: Image found on Pixabay

Resources:

Chopra, Deepak. Inner Peace Meditation. You Tube

Kessler, David. Finding Meaning. The Sixth Stage of Grief.

40 thoughts on “The True Self: Resting in Awareness.

  1. Hi LaDonna, very nice to hear from you. I do check in on your designated monthly date to see if you have something new. And while I’m glad to see a new post this morning, I am so sorry for its content.

    My deep condolences to you and your husband on your familial loss and wishing you both well as you navigate the next few days and weeks.

    The resting in awareness concept is very interesting. I’ve never heard of it before but the principles seem to apply across multiple belief systems – the idea that our loved ones are never truly gone. That is indeed a comforting thought. 💕

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Heartfelt condolences and prayers for your husband’s loss.
    Grief is a very tough journey. We know that life is transient, yet when the loss hits; it sometimes takes away a part of our being.
    In this period you have written something which will give help to those who will read your post.
    Our prayers are with both of you.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. It is a very powerful part of our journey, touching something that shakes our carefully built life so that we will ask that question…what does really have meaning in my life? One year ago I lay dying on my kitchen floor from a very bad reaction to my Emphysema medication, lungs blown up and closed my breathing down to about a one inch square of lung that this infinitesimal piece of air was squeaking in and out. I was in trouble and I knew it, I could see so many things even from where I was in that moment. So much was events to become what I was but now seen as so many bits of flotsam that we hold onto for comfort and just plain old habit. It changed so many things. There was indeed a detachment as there was another story behind it all, that inner being observing and ‘knowing’ where I was always in all that I do, that backseat driver that will give a nudge in our lives and even at times take over in those moment where you just shake your head and ask…what just happened?
    But the part that really shook my tree was as I was laying there thinking this is it…God spoke to me and said ‘I am the giver of life’. In the space that I was in I was petrified…but behind that was an acceptance of my journey. And so slowly the oxygen returned after what felt like forever and I slowly took stock of what just happened. I’ve never been overly religious even though I am a spiritual counselor and know of what is behind it all. But somehow my father issues kept God at bay. That sort of went out the window on that night and left me to really ponder just what it is that we all do here. I had an understanding of our journey down here and all that I thought that it meant, but somehow touching something so profound has even now allowed a deeper understanding by experiencing it all…because above all else was that acceptance of who I really was, knowing that even if I tripped and stumbled through this life, we have indeed been given something so profound to teach us a love by allowing us to remove it, and in experiencing it all seeing the truth of that journey.
    My heart goes to you both, it is a painful thing to touch but know that it is speaking to you both in ways that may not be obvious now but will indeed create much empathy and love from experiencing it. Painful yes, but you are creating something so, so beautiful within that in finally seeing it truly you will know that this event is done with such a love, so that you can find yours.
    Love and light to you both ❤️ 🙏🏽 🦋

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am sorry for your husband’s loss and how you are both affected. Your insights and assertions on the spiritual experience of death–and responding to the deaths of others–are meaningful and sensible. You give much that is good for us to ponder.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Oh my, LaDonna. I am so sorry for the loss you and L have experienced, are experiencing. Much love to you both.

    I needed this post today. All of your words resonated deeply in my heart, where they will continue to reside. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for being the amazing human being you are, and for sharing yourself with all of us. ❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Jeff, Thank you for your kind words and care. I am glad you found words that resonated. This life can be a a true mixture of things, as I imagine it is supposed to be. I hope you are well. Much love and care to you. 💗💗

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m so sorry for your loss. My heart goes out to your and husband. 🙏 As a person with c-ptsd, who has experienced many different types of grief and loss, this post struck a resonant chord in me.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. “The true self is that -which is never born and is not subject to death. The true self is that which many spiritual traditions call the soul. He further notes, “In Eastern Wisdom Traditions when we speak of the true-self we also know that it is ancient. It is unborn. That fire cannot burn it. That wind cannot dry it. Weapons cannot shatter it. It is not in space nor in time but is our eternal home. ”

    Wonderful post! One who knows this fears no more. I am very happy to get your posts. I have seen that you have linked and followed my posts. I am in this path of enlightenment since last four years. I understood many things.
    “According to Vedanta, the goal of Human is ” Attyantika Dukshya Nivritti, Paramananda praptyachya”. Complete cessation of sufferings and attainment of Bliss is the goal of everyone. In the Second part of the Brahmananda Valli, there is one section(section eight), known as ” Ananda Mimamsa” which means an enquiry into the form of Supreme Bliss(Ananda). The Text first defines what is human joy and defines one unit measure, a standard unit of human joy. Then it explains about multiple units of this Joy at different level”
    He who lives in Man(MAN AND WOMAN BOTH), He who lives in the Sun are one. He who knows this spiritual joy, mind cannot grasp, nor tongue speak, fears nothing.” “He who knows this, cries goodbye to the world, goes beyond elemental Self, living Self, thinking Self, knowing Self, joyous Self.  ”  
    I will read your posts which are full of knowledge, true knowledge. To understand True knowledge, to realize true Self, we need to rest in Awareness. SAT + CHIT + ANANDA = EXISTENCE + AWARENESS( CONSCIOUSNESS) + ABLISS. That is our Original Nature.

    I express my best regards.🙏🙏
    Namaste.
    ARUN

    Liked by 2 people

      1. You are most welcome. From your post, I got more confidence. Indeed there is no birth, so no death of the Self. What we see is appearance. However we remain so attached with these appearances that we can not bear the transformations. I express my deepest condolences for the loss your husband has experienced. You have so powerful knowledge, therefore I pray 🙏 that you all overcome the painful situation.
        My best regards to you and your husband. Wish you and your family a peaceful time ahead.
        🙏🙏🙏

        Like

  8. I am so sorry for your family’s loss – my deepest condolences. The poem by Henry Scott-Allen is so quietly resonant and comforting. This is a difficult time in our shared history to grieve with friends and family. We long for a comforting hug without masks but that cannot be for most of us. Many of our family love thousands of miles from each other and have been unable to visit for funerals. Our plan is to have a happy yet sad memorial some time in the future. My thoughts are with you both and may your love for each other help your through this. K x

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you Kerry. 💗 I am sending you care and thoughts for comfort , too. It has been a long journey through this period. I am glad you will be with your loved ones for a future “ happy yet sad”

      Like

      1. Most of our relatives who died during Covid were not close but the grief reverberates throughout the family and brings back memories of parents who have passed. We are all in this together and will make it through with kindness. K x

        Liked by 2 people

  9. My sincere condolences to you and your husband for your loss. Sending a comforting hug your way. It has been an unfortunate journey filled with grief and loss for many of us, thank you for caring and for finding time to share this post ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Hi, LaDonna, my heart was heavy as I read your post. Deepak is one of my favorite spiritual writers, and his words are indeed comforting. I also love the poem. I think I’ve seen the first stanza, but never the entire verse. Beautiful and so positive. Blessings to you and L on your path to healing this loss. 🌞

    Liked by 2 people

  11. LaDonna, and this is utterly beautiful and touches me, too. Grief can be so painful. I am sorry for your husband’s (and your) loss. We too have experienced grief this week, and it’s a challenge…and not something that’s possible to share publicly. Thank you for writing this. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

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