I just read The Untethered Soul by Michael A. Singer (thank you, Pam, for the recommendation!). The book blew my mind. As I turned each page, I felt something in my cells and molecules shift and rearrange. Reading it was a holy, beautiful experience.
Singer’s basic premise is this: we are not our psyche. We should be sitting in the seat of awareness; observing what happens, but not being personally involved with it. He talks about how energy is designed to move through us, but we block this healthy process by storing unpleasant emotions and they remain trapped inside of us. This keeps us living in the past, bound up inside by negative energy and fears.
He offers a better way: to feel emotions or notice thoughts as they come, but then relax your shoulders, breathe deep, and choose to let them pass through you. It’s just energy, and not personal to us (even if it may feel personal). This practice helps us learn to live in the present moment instead of remaining fixated on events from years ago or anxiety about what could go wrong in the future.
I’ve been practicing this and I’m utterly amazed at the difference in how present I feel in any given moment. Life is not meant to be taken so personally. Shit will continue to happen to us. Small and large energy shifts will occur in us, where we feel unsettled, afraid, joyful, optimistic or angry. We can notice these feelings and name them, but the key is to let them go so they don’t stay trapped inside of us.
The same is true with thoughts. Our racing, fevered minds can get us into all kinds of trouble, but we don’t have to engage with the rabbit-trail our thoughts want to lead us on. We can simply observe the thought, “Oh man, I forgot to pick up the dry-cleaning and where in the world did I put that receipt I need for my taxes and the car needs more windshield washer fluid…” and then choose to let it go.
We are much more than our minds or our emotions. We have a higher consciousness, and it can only help to free us if we move beyond the confines of our frenzied thoughts and hyper-sensitive feelings.
The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself has offered me a new set of skills to practice. Whenever I start to feel worried or disturbed by the incessant chatter in my brain, I can observe from my seat of awareness and then allow the energy to pass through me. I don’t want anxiety about the dry cleaners or taxes or windshield washer fluid trapped inside of me for the rest of my days. No thank you!
I’m looking for peace and beauty and inspiration, not a prison of drudgery to whatever stress my mind or emotions can dream up for me. Making a conscious effort to be aware of my thoughts and feelings has anchored me to the present moment in an entirely fresh and real way. I love it. I’m so grateful for this brilliant book and recommend it to anyone and everyone.