The Untethered Soul: the journey beyond yourself by Michael Singer (New Harbinger Publications, 2007)
As a yogi and spiritual seeker of many years, I felt lifted into the next dimension by reading this fabulous….it’s not a book, more like an event that draws you in deeper and deeper to the core. Author Michael Singer combines ancient and modern spiritual teachings from an amazing array of sources and synthesizes them into a potent promise of enlightenment by inviting us to return to the “seat of consciousness” in each moment.
Singer writes spiritual axioms and powerful truths in unassuming ways: “A wise person remains centered enough to let go every time the energy shifts into a defensive mode”.
“The mind is a place where the soul goes to hide from the heart.”
So as I’m sitting reading Singer’s views in my lovely, quiet home with the warm fire and the bite of the cool spring evening, I feel zapped with this sharp lightning bolt: the mind thinks it’s in charge, but it’s actually not.
Instead, Singer articulates simply and with zinging focus how the mind keeps us insane and frantic because we believe it when it’s fretting over the outsanity–the way the world runs in such strange ways. For me, it’s sometimes small things, like the way the neighbor’s dog barks incessantly. But it can latch onto large injustices too, like the anguish I feel about the degradation of the environment (especially with the US pulling out of the Paris Accord).
And my most recent emotional hook: the horror of the 5,000 young girls and women held as sex slaves by ISIS and now living in a refugee camp. Unwelcome back to their communities because they are “defiled” and not allowed into other countries because they may have been “radicalized”. And then there is my own seriously tiny but ongoing fretting of what you think of me and how I sometimes judge you (and myself!) harshly.
Singer says, “Your only way out is the witness. Just keep letting go by being aware that you are aware….You just keep letting go, and remain aware that you are still there…You now become aware of a universe behind your seat of consciousness.”
A deeper sense of freedom and choice is offered, even when the mind and emotions roil around like venomous snakes in a pit of darkness. Just this moment. Be aware of being aware. Pause and breathe in the truth of this.
“When the energies inside start to move, you do not have to go there.”
So for me the new way is that I take action out of a deeper place of conscious stillness instead of my usual place of righteous rage. If I’m not in my centre, deeply connected with consciousness.
Perhaps one moment I’m furious about the many injustices (see starter list above) or maybe yearning desperately for the new carbon fibre kayak that only weighs 32 pounds while mine weighs 56 and I can hardly carry it anymore.
If I begin to be aware of my awareness of the cravings and aversions of the mind then I can (more often) allow the disturbances to pass. And hold myself in kindness and compassion, returning over and over again to the seat of consciousness.
“There’s a place deep inside of you where the consciousness touches the energy and the energy touches the consciousness. That’s where your work is. From that place, you let go. Once you’ve let go, every minute of every day, year after year, then that’s where you’ll live.”
Singer concludes this deliciously rich book that I’m re-reading again with ecstatic love as the core truth. To live fully in the presence of the Divine, Spirit, God, Yahweh, Allah, Brahma (or what every language you choose)…
The Divine One’s “very nature is light, love, compassion, protection and giving…”
I feel uplifted and more conscious, in just this moment, by this treasure of a book. I highly recommend this for your own path of awakening.