(From Plotinus.com) The Psyche is that part in man that unfolds his unique individuality and allows him to develop his particular characteristics. In turn, these characteristics helps, in their turn make him observe the world in a personal and distinctive way. From one incarnation to the next, the way man observes and understands his world changes and grows, along new experiences, his individual distinctive personality and characteristics change too. Moreover, these changes affect his level of consciousness, unfolding within him unsuspected or unknown qualities. These new discoveries allow him to continue enrich his individuality. When does logic dictate that one develops and unfolds different characteristics and creative attributes only to loose them at the end of one’s life when death reclaims the ego and body of man?
Thinking that the end of our life is the end of our existence goes against what nature teaches us… Nature demonstrates that everything created is destroyed so as to be recreated. This follows the laws of change and the cycles of transformation that are necessary for the evolution of all the species. So, why should we be governed by a different law? After death, were we to loose all our increased wisdom and with it the corresponding levels of consciousness, this would go against the law of nature itself. If on the other hand we observe carefully our own nature and see how many cycles of transformation we have undergone – of deaths and rebirths and of new patterns and ideas, we understand the complexity and richness of our own existence…the diverse and unique ways of unfolding our individuality. Who we are, and what we are today has been based on the same law of death and creation…
We are born with implanted and engrained ideas, desires and thought-forms… these are particular to each one of us…If, as I am convinced, the law of reincarnation exists, I would like to give you my way of experiencing this law. As an ego personality… I will at the end of this life be “destroyed” – and that is the end of it…Here you will say, death exists… since I am claiming that I will not remember to have been “Alice” in my next life and therefore I will disappear into oblivion… Yes in this case, if we think that the ego is the only thing that exists in life, then yes, after death it will not survive and death will bring an end to the whole saga. However, I know for myself that this is not so. There is a misunderstanding of what reincarnation is… The ego does disappear…but it goes back to the source, which is the Soul. The ego is a reflection of the Soul… and in each incarnation this reflection takes a new feature… a feature that corresponds to whatever the Soul needs to unfold in this new incarnation… In each new reflection of the Soul, an ego will unfold and develop gradually what it had done in the past. By this process there is a continual and changing cycle of destruction or death to create a new life and continue where one has left off…
Evolution for man means an AWAKENING process. So how do we rekindle our past developed characteristics, attributes and qualities? Where do they gather since the ego of a new born is “virgin”, how can it rediscover the inborn qualities? The answer is simple – each child is different from another… each child grows to become an adult and while growing he/she experiences inner impulses, gifts, likes and dislikes, temperaments, intellectual characteristics that make each person unique. The environment in which we are born plays a part, so does the physical genes of our parents and the schooling we have received. However, there is a subtle difference between the spiritual and psychic development that has no bearing to our environment or academic background.
The answer is simply this, the more one awakes the more one realizes that the ego is just an aspect of the Soul… and by opening to its resonance one begins to find the thread that links one from incarnation to another.
However, we could ask why do we need to remember the past? The answer is that we do not need to do that at all! The important part of all this essay is to make you realize that as an “ego” you will not survive, because the ego is just a convenient and necessary TOOL that gathers and stores useful experiences this time around and continues to keep the torch of Life and renewal process ALIVE.
We may ask the question where do we find the “thread” that links our incarnations on our journey? The thread is the psyche… It is the reservoir of our past achievements, “failures” qualities and faults… everything is in there… But as the ego is just a reflection of an aspect of the Soul, it cannot choose what it needs to unfold and develop in any given incarnation. That task comes under the responsibility of the Soul. This is what karma means… The possibilities that are available to the psyche and the ways it will present them to the ego.
The gathering “place” in the psyche is not physical, but an intangible part of the memory of the Soul. In other words, nothing is lost, all developed qualities and characteristics gather in the Soul’s memory. The Soul uses its own memory to unfold Divine Wisdom and Knowledge. What does this mean? It means that from incarnation to incarnation the learned experiences and developed qualities in an individual Soul continue to develop manifesting and unfolding more of its divine qualities and creative attributes. Hence, we can see that karmic law fulfils the necessary experiences to allow the manifestation of divine qualities in one’s life. Moreover, if one accepts the law of reincarnation, then one understands that the Soul’s memory as part of the Soul remains hidden from consciousness and the ego could never be able to explore it, unless the Soul wishes and allows it.
The Psyche is the mirror of the Soul and could be compared to a dual aspect mirror reflecting all kinds of impulses coming from the Soul and the ego at the same time. This inner process allows consciousness to receive and understand the psychic and spiritual impulses that come from within, thus influencing our everyday experiences.
However, there is another aspect of the Psyche that we have not explored yet. I feel that the time has come to impart these few ideas to help you reflect on the importance of the psyche, which should not be confused with the Soul.
First of all, ask yourself this question… Why is it, that as human beings, we have to develop a psyche? What does it mean and what is its use? Most people do not give any importance to the psyche, preferring to accept the fact that they have developed their own personal ways of dealing with problems and solving them. They acknowledge however, the fact that they have personal likes and dislikes, phobias and things, that they love or hate, goals and ideals. However, very few people, stop to ask themselves the question? Why is it that my interests in life, my goals and ideals are different from those of the rest of my family, from the circle of my friends? Why am I the way I am, in certain ways unlike any other person that I am acquainted with. Why am I pushed to unveil the meaning of my life, when my sister and brother with whom I have received the same attention are not? What is it that pushes me to inquire, search, explore, my inner self? Physically, my physical traits could resemble those of my parents, I might pick up some external characteristics due to education and environment, but why is it that I have an urge and a dream that is unique and belongs just to myself?
If reincarnation was not a logical explanation, if consciousness and the Soul essence and Personality did not continue from incarnation to incarnation, then, what is the reason of developing such complex beings? Why are we so different and unique? We should all have been like robots, having no subtle spiritual depth, acting and reacting mechanically…Why do we develop such an array of different tastes, moods and creativity? Why is there such a difference in the intelligence, imagination and feelings of people? How can we accept the fact that one person is born a genius and another a poor idiot? Some people might simply say that it is due to an accident of circumstance, or of parental genes and DNA, of the environment, of culture and education, etc… I personally find this to be a simplistic answer to this crucial question. Other than that, let us imagine for a moment that the laws of nature are simple, but the result of their creations very intricate.
We shall gradually come to understand and appreciate these reasons. I have written a lot about consciousness, and science tells us that every animate thing in nature has some kind of consciousness. We are told that mother earth is alive and changing and therefore everything that grows and manifests on her, lives and vibrates to various degrees of consciousness. Everything changes and transforms through consciousness. From rocks to plants and from insects to animals, from animals to humans and from humans to enlightened beings, everything belongs to a level of consciousness which “awakens” gradually by passing from the same law of cycles of destruction and creation.
The Psyche gives us a clue… I have compared the Psyche to a mirror. A mirror reflects and creates a DOUBLE…For example, when you look at yourself in the mirror, you will see your own PROJECTION…You will be able to see yourself physically when you see your own reflection in the mirror…Likewise, you know that you exist when you compare yourself to others… when you make a separation between the world and you… This simply proves that to be able to recognize your own existence, you must live in a world of DUALITY… and thereby experience your own DUALITY… What is the result of this realization? What happens when you become conscious of your own image and reflection in the mirror? You instantly have a REACTION. You react and a flood of emotions and thoughts rush into your consciousness. What happens next, is that MEMORY opens the gate of the subconscious and feelings and thoughts that are related to that experience make their appearance in your psyche and affect the way you interpret and understand your own reflection. Hence what you see in front of you in the mirror is based on your past experiences…the experiences that are gathered in your Psyche.
So the question arises, can you separate yourself from your Psyche and look at the image reflected in the mirror without being affected by it? The answer is simply “No you can’t” because all experiences in life are lived in the world of duality, a world that functions and works through the projections of each individual Psyche. The reservoir and mirror in which the Soul projects parts of its own memory… transferring the need to develop whatever needs to be continued.
However, when in the mirror of the psyche CONSCIOUSNESS reflects only pure CONSCIOUSNESS, then the world of duality is transcended… and Being awakes through CONSCIOUSNESS.
A great resource for Mysticism.