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Waking up to ourselves describes a whole new level of being self-aware. We no longer know ourselves simply through the thoughts we have about ourselves, but we can now see these formerly self-defining thoughts as being only one small aspect of who we really are. So it can be said that awakening begins with being able to see that we have been asleep in the state of thought.
Looking at this same idea from the other way around, to be spiritually asleep means that we are not conscious of our own thoughts, and are convinced these thoughts and feelings are the same as us. This sleep state has far-reaching implications.When we don't know we are in thought, then the choices these thoughts make can't be said to be our choices. This discovery explains much about how we often unwittingly choose our own undoing!
Now, add to this insight that our lives move at the speed of our thoughts. Suddenly we can see why we tend to crash as often as we do. There is no real driver aboard! Once this discovery is confirmed in us--through observation of it by a part of us that can see into this thought nature instead of seeing from it--we become interested in making a whole new kind of choice in life. We want to be awake to ourselves more than we want the comfort of the dreams that our thought nature creates. We are willing to invest more of our attention in seeing where we go to sleep to ourselves in ourselves.
When we will come wide awake, bringing ourselves fully into the present moment, thoughts cannot travel into it with us. With even a small willingness on our part to enter the Perfect Present, it is possible for us to experience the consistently new, thought-free, and untroubled Now.
In this higher, timeless realm, we are free not to do what we no longer find worthwhile. For instance, we don't have to relive our past again and again. We don't have to fear the future, because it ceases to exist as a fearful place in the true here and now. With all of this in mind, use the following special lessons and exercises to help you come awake and remain in the untroubled Now.
Whenever you do find you have suddenly come awake to yourself, your first inner task (besides welcoming this awakening) is to work to remain within this self-elevating presence. The difficulty is that this still, small, briefly awake part of you gets quickly overruled and run over by habitually sleeping "I's" effectively returning you back into a state of undetected psychic slumber. This is why, whenever you do find yourself a bit more awake than the moment before-- wherever you may be, or whatever you may be doing-- deliberately align yourself with this inwardly breaking light. Will yourself over to its will that you be awake. Seek ways to lengthen its stay within you by embracing these moments this awakened-ness has brought you. In other words, do all that you can to stay awake.
One exercise in self-awakening is to begin to see that when certain types of thoughts or feelings pour into you, they bring certain pre-known qualities with them that lull you to sleep in their welcome familiarity. When detecting these agents, voluntarily struggle not to go to sleep. Refuse to recline in the comfort of these habitual states.
Other inner practices may include deliberately speaking with people at an undetected fraction of your normal speed so that while you are conversing, you will start to see and feel inside of yourself a whole host of thoughts never before known by you because of their formerly habitual pace and place within you. Through this now-conscious contrast created by consciously slowing yourself down you will be kept awake and rather than falling to sleep, and into trouble, you will gain new strength and insights into the truth of yourself.
Whenever you can, and as often as you are able (right now for instance,) just come aware of yourself, of that to which you are inwardly connected. This awareness of what you are in relationship with in the moment instantly changes your relationship. Come awake over and over again in this way, and watch how new and higher energies, and their commensurate inner states, make a happy home in you.
Excerpted from Seeker's Guide to Self-Freedom, © by Guy Finley. Published by Llewellyn Publications.
Guy is the acclaimed author of The Secret of Letting Go and more than 37 other books and audio programs that have sold over a million copies in 16 languages worldwide.