Yoga Wellness Educator. Certified to teach Hatha Yoga, Meditation, Pilates, Reiki. Yoga Therapy Foundations program. I love to write.
Higher States of Consciousness
I have always been fascinated by the stories of the angels who fell from grace. I understood the fall from grace differently, at various states of consciousness, at different times in my life.
Today, as I was relaxing after my morning meditation, it occurred to me that the fall from grace happens when we are forced to see reality in a new and different way because of our present-day perception. The clearer our perception, the higher our state of awareness, and the less likely we are to find ourselves fall from a higher state of consciousness or fall from grace.
Angels are those beings who lived in a high state of consciousness, but fell from a state of bliss and all-knowing to a state of ignorance and conflict because of doubt and craving for power. From living in a higher state of consciousness, they found themselves relegated to lower levels with their emotional, psychological and mental hang-ups. They downgraded themselves from freedom to chaos.
How do we recapture that state of grace? We can work toward reaching higher states of consciousness by using a combination of some of these techniques:
- Praying – communicating with our God or our preferred deity, which is like talking to our best friend.
- Meditating on a regular basis.
- Yoga practised on a regular basis.
- Gazing at a mandala or a symbol. This practice can give us profound insights that may not solve a mystery for us, but may help us grasp something awesome.
- Being mindful of ourselves, our surroundings, the people around us, and of life in general.
- Walking slowly and mindfully in nature, when it is safe to do so.
- Journaling daily – writing about anything and everything that cross our mind or happen to us during the day.
- Learning or practicing an art like painting, drawing, sculpting, playing music, making music, attending a piece of theater or a good movie etc.
- Psychotherapy if needed, especially when we experience trauma or a tragic loss. Life happens.
- Avoiding negative people if and when possible. We want to avoid having their negative attitude rub on us.
- Taking care of our health and paying attention to signals from our bodies. Some nerves in the stomach react when the brain is prompted by something.
- Exercising in a reasonable manner without excess. The kind of exercise that is suitable for us individually.
- Paying attention to our intuitions. For those who have yet to fully develop their intuition, there are exercises to improve insights and gut feelings.
- Reading uplifting books or articles.
- Listening to uplifting conversations, or attending uplifting talks.
- Taking up a meditative hobby that requires a repetitive action. This kind of repetition frees our worrying mind so we can focus on and enjoy the present moment. Knitting is an example of a meditative hobby.
- Relaxing and using creative visualization. We can visualize what we want to create, and see our ideas come to life in our mind’s eye.
- Being grateful - feeling grateful improves our mood, raises our spirit, and sheds a positive light on what goes on in our lives, and
- Taking time to do nothing, which will inspire us to get in touch with the insight of our spirit.
In her “Eastern Mind, Western Body” book, Anodea Judith talks of our needs and the issues we face, mainly in early adulthood and adult life, with developing or regaining our higher state of consciousness and our higher self. These needs and issues are spiritual freedom, intellectual stimulation, and spiritual practice.
When we find ourselves craving for “a deeper understanding and connection to the underlying fabric of existence”, we are aiming to reach a higher state of consciousness.
Anodea Judith likens the higher self to climbing to the top of a tree so we can have a better view of the environment where we are at that moment. This better view allows us to make decisions in a wise manner and helps us to chart the optimal course of action.
The higher self is a mystery, an enigma that we spend our lives trying to comprehend and attain. Aiming to reach a higher state of consciousness gives meaning to our life and makes life worth living.
We make our destinies by our choice of God.
The Role of Faith in my Life
The notion of higher consciousness is prevalent in religion. It is said that the earliest historical mention of higher consciousness is in the Upanishads, the Sanskrit Hindu texts. It is a projection of the higher aspects of Nature.
I come from a long line of Christians of the Middle East. My grandfather was a catholic priest from the maronite eastern catholic rite and I was brought up by maronite and catholic nuns from an early age. I grew up with a Christian mindset, but never really made a conscious decision to belong to this faith.
More than a decade ago, I decided to stop the practice of yoga and meditation, and dedicated all my free time to understanding the Christian faith. The beauty of the Christian spirituality took my breath away, and I fell in love with it.
I have restarted the practice of yoga and meditation for health and healing purposes. I still feel a Christian at heart even though I no longer go to church. This may change with time, but who knows?
I have stripped my yoga and meditation practice of any religious context and use them to heal my body, my mind, and my emotions. I may not be considered a true Christian by the Christian church, or a true yogini by the yoga masters, but I am fine with that. I do not need approval or recognition from either and I thank the wisdom of the Crone for that.
For those of you who may have forgotten, the Crone is a symbol of wisdom that comes from experience. The Crone is a woman who has lived through love, sadness, hope, and fear and emerged from all of it a wise and self-assured spirit.
© 2020 Liliane Najm