The untethered soul, the journey beyond yourself by Michael A. Singer was the book I took on my little camping trip. My first attempt reading it failed, and I chalk it up to the timing not being right. Reading it this time, I felt as if my own spiritual journey was explained and made sense of. It was a celebration to see how far I had come, while each chapter shed more light on the actual how’s and why’s itself, and how to free oneself from a life of conditioning. It allowed me to understand the actions and behaviors of others in greater detail and to meet actual painful experiences with more love, understanding and compassion. It allowed me to make peace and gain greater insight of what it is we all face on this journey beyond ourselves.
I would highly recommend it to anyone who has questions, who is daring to take a look, and seeking to understand more about themselves. It’s a journey of our thoughts and emotions, our inner dialogue and the fluctuations of our inner energy, resulting in feelings, behaviors and reactions, a lifelong programming we adapt in order to protect ourselves from pain. It’s a journey of awareness and awakening, tethered to the ego with hands on examples and scenarios for inner freedom and liberation. It’s simple, yet a pure mastery of clarity. It has profoundly touched me this time around and is one of the best self help books since Eckhart Tolle. I will probably quote and share bits and pieces with you many times going forward.
In awakening consciousness and the first chapter titled “the voice inside your head,” Michael talks about our inner voice and the dialogue we have with ourselves. It’s the voice that keeps you up at night when you are trying to sleep, the voice that only you can hear, the dialogue that narrates your entire world. It never stops. Even when it is saying nice things, it’s still disturbing everything you’re doing. You surely have heard this voice in the past, haven’t you? So who is this voice if you are the one who is observing it and why do we do it? A study carefully revealed that the narration makes us feel more comfortable with the world around us. For instance: You walk home alone late at night. It’s dark and foggy and you feel an eerie silence. Your mind and inner dialogue is going a 100 miles an hour.
“All is ok, not too much further. I’m almost home. What was that noise, is someone following me. Should I run or keep my composure?”
It goes on and on and it never stops, playing out every possible scenario. The narrative keeps us focused, distracted, even calm and again it tips back to the need of being in control, being prepared for the unknown and the unexpected. It all happens in an attempt to protect ourselves from pain and to avoid any inner disturbances.
Reality is a serious thing for many of us and is often too difficult to deal with it. We try to temper it with our minds and our inner dialogue, talking our way through the difficulties. In an attempt to hold the world together, you are really just trying to hold yourself together. True personal growth is about transcending the part of you that is not ok and needs protection. This is done by constantly remembering that you are the one inside that notices the voice talking. If used properly, the same mental voice that has been a source of worry, distraction, and general neurosis can become the launching ground for true spiritual awakening. Come to know the one who watches the voice, and you will come to know one of the gray mysteries of creation.
Words: excerpts from the book “the untethered soul” and myself