You are not who you think you are.
And you are about to learn why knowing this matters.
It matters because knowing will give you a pathway to the most powerful and meaningful relationships of your life and if you desire it, to HOT, soulful sex.
Because what stops you from achieving these things are the elaborate power plays especially designed for you by your Ego to avoid real connection with another.
– Fighting back to gain control over the person or situation
– Freezing and holding on to your position no matter how unhelpful
– Avoiding and shifting your attention onto something safer
– Projecting your emotional pain onto those around you
– Or getting the hell out of there altogether…
But your Ego is just a part of you.
Until you know this its limited strategies will control you. When you access what follows struggle disappears, the heart opens and ease follows.
This story starts with a trip to New Zealand, the adventure capital of the world by Graeme and his 3 teenage children all of whom are excitement junkies. Along with me, Annette, who somehow ended up on the trip even though she is afraid of heights!
First though let’s go on a tour of who you think you are right now.
I’m going to get a little heavy here but…stay with me it will be worth it!
So who are you?
Who you think you are is a manifestation of your Ego. This is your personality or persona, the part of you that thinks, judges, worries, plans, expects, desires, fears, achieves. It is the story that runs in the Left Side of your brain (the big spongy part at the top of our brain) and forms your Self Consciousness- the part of you that is aware of yourself. This part of you is linear and concerned with what is logical and what is known- the past (memories), future (at least its idea of the future) and lots of details, details, details like ”I must remember to buy bananas” or “she really hurt me last time”. It is what connects you with your external world, with those around you in your “ordinary everyday” reality. It does this by a language of logic, rational thinking, understanding and expression.
For example right now your L Brain is helping you read and hopefully understand this article.
Your Ego is the psychological part of you that thinks you are separate from everything and everyone else and seeks to be unique and special enough to get the attention it needs to feel connected ie. loved. This is why you work hard to achieve in life (and why there is such a boom in TV reality shows, Australian Idol and Instagram). It is also why you create the many masks of your
particular persona- the good girl, the successful man, the hardworker, the honest one etc, ways of being that are more likely to get you approval. Sometimes you might create masks that protect you from this dance of approval eg. the rebel, the joker, the depressive, but underneath you care just the same. This is because your Ego holds your innate drive for relationship and sex at a psychological (rather than biological) level – in order to end your sense of separation and feel connected. Also because of this separateness your Ego loves to attach itself to anyone and anything. If a person isn’t available then work, food, alcohol, stress and anything else you can get addicted to will do. And because your Ego is always oriented to the future any satisfaction we gain from these things is momentary. This is not because you are inadequate or lacking, it is because you are functioning at a purely Egoic level.
As you can see there’s a lot of effort in this place…and its why having an orgasm is so blissfully freeing as it is your most familiar way of going beyond the Ego.
Going to get a little Zen here for a moment…
The Right side of your brain is how you experience your Soul. It has God, Infinite or “Everything” Consciousness rather than Self
Consciousness and is the part of you that is aware of more than yourself. This part of you is global and not concerned with needing or knowing as it already “is everything” and “knows”. It is fully in the now, with no past or future, just being with what is without needing to understand, strive or achieve. It is what connects you with your internal world, with internal self, your “extraordinary reality”. Its expression is through feelings, senses, images (internal eg. Dreams, meditations) and uses descriptive, poetic language. It accesses your body, your heart, your creativity, spontaneity and intuition.
Your R brain is what is allowing you to experience yourself actually sitting in your room reading this article- do you get the difference between R and L Brain functioning?
Your Soul identity is the timeless, boundaryless, perfect whole. There is no trying or struggling as you are perfect already. It is comfortable in the unknown as being everything means you are also nothing and you’re ok either way. There are no desires to fulfil as you ARE desire. You have no need to achieve or connect as you’re already there. You have no sense of separation, you feel connected to everything. At its deepest level there isn’t even a “You”, there is just everything. Strong R Brain experiences are like sitting on the beach enjoying the sea, sand and surf or having the best hippy like high…lots happening on the inside, not much outside.
Stay with me here as I hope understanding this will be as life changing for you as it was for me. And we’ll get to the thrill seeking side of a mountain in New Zealand shortly I promise!
Left and Right Brain are so different- how do they work together?
In addition to these two brain halves you have a pathway between them called the Corpus Callosum, this is the neural pathway which allows the two sides to communicate with each other giving you access to both. For an amazing insight into how these two sides function watch TEDx Talk My Stroke of Insight by Jill Bolte Taylor. Your experience of life will be determined by which side of your brain is most activated and how well the two halves communicate. You began on the R side when you were born, moved into the L as you developed into an adult, then will seek to bring in more of the R again as you mature. To be psychologically healthy you need both. This is why you also have the Transpersonal or Witness Consciousness, the consciousness that is beyond or bigger than the persona, contains both Ego & Infinite Consciousness and is the gatekeeper between them. Tantra helps us access this part of ourselves and is what Tantra is all about for us. As the more developed this triangular pathway becomes the more present, capable, fulfilled and joyous as we humans can be.
Now picture me on the side of a mountain…
This is where my fear cultivating trip to Queenstown New Zealand with four adrenaline junkies seeking all kinds of thrill experiences came in handy as an experiment with my Ego, for how we deal with fear is a mind game. Picture me on the side of a mountain, all suited up in a parachute harness with 3 very lovely adventure guides (1 a hot American guy by the name of Drew hooked up behind me) all doing their best to convince a totally terrified me it would be great fun to jump off the edge. The things we do to ourselves!
Because your Ego’s number one desire is attachment it fears anything that threatens this.
My story is extreme but will show you the games that your Ego can play, see if you can resonate with any of these…
Here is what was happening in my Egoic mind:
Fear 1: Being In The Unknown- not knowing how it was going to feel when I jumped caused my body to go into a state of high tension. Even though the logical part of my brain was saying yes the negative part of it was creating all sorts of fear stories and saying no! My adventure coaches were telling me that once I was off the cliff I would love it but because I did not know this from experience I was staying right where I was.
Fear 2: Being Out of Control- imagining jumping off felt like being pushed off this cliff and tumbling out of control down it, not being able to right myself or keep myself safe. My Ego wanted to stay in on the cliff and in control.
Fear 3: Being Overwhelmed- imagining jumping off also brought a feeling of being ‘too much’, like a big wave coming over the top of me and dumping me at the bottom of the ocean unable to breathe! I wasn’t looking forward to that either!
Underlying these three fears is the Ego’s major fear:
Annihilation- complete destruction or obliteration, in other words ceasing to exist. This was ultimately my fear standing on the edge of the mountain. That if I jumped I would simply cease to exist. My fear was so great I believed if I jumped, as my amazingly encouraging supporters so wanted me too, I would completely disappear. Not logical but 100% real to my Ego self.
How is all of this important to you?
As you go about your day your Ego is continually offered many and varied opportunities in dealing with people and with life that challenges these fears. These challenges feel like your own internal “edge”. Such as applying for a job, asking for a date, negotiating boundaries in your relationship, talking about sex with your lover etc etc. And how you manage them determines your quality of life.
Do you fall into the trap of thinking the only tools you have are the defensive tools of your Ego described above?
Or do you trust your knowledge of your Corpus Callosum and Transpersonal Consciousness and access the responsive tools of your Soul? Tools which offer you infinitely more creative, inspired solutions with ease and joy? This is where a strong pathway between your 3 levels of consciousness- Ego, Soul and Transpersonal offers you so much.
And relationship is just the place to practice as you have lots of material to work with and a committed partner at least once they see the benefits to them!).
This trust allows you to choose your inner nothingness rather than your outward defences because you know that is just your Ego’s game. Depending on the level of challenge to your Ego’s desire for attachment this letting go into this nothingness can result in a slight feeling of unease or the deepest terror. But its only for a moment. The more willing you are the quicker it happens. To do this you need to trust yourself and the process. And remember its a bit like letting go into an orgasm and feels great afterwards!
The degree of surrender is relative to the degree of challenge.
There is no right or wrong choice here. Once spiritual teachers would say that Ego is bad and the only path is the dissolution of the Ego in order to connect with Soul and Spirit. But there is also value in building a healthy Ego first as without one you can get totally lost and overwhelmed in the nothingness that exists between head and heart. Learning to trust and rely on your ordinary everyday sense of self is important before trusting yourself enough to go into the momentary nothingness required to access your extraordinary Self- your body, heart, soul and spirit.
It is vital is to know you have a choice.
To know there is more to you than your Ego, and that when you are ready you have a map of how to get there.
HOW do you access ALL of your self?
1. When you feel your edge Stop.
2. Decide that rather than go out you are going to go inwards.
3. As you do you will have a sense of emptiness, confusion or not knowing. It is just your Ego surrendering. Trust that all is well.
3. Close your eyes. Breathe deeply into your belly exhaling gently. Observe your thoughts but don’t act on them, just let them come and go, keep breathing. This is your Witness or 3rd consciousness coming into play.
4. Now bring in your R Brain to feel- first on the outside- feel yourself sitting, lying, your hands, feet, buttocks etc.
5. Then feel inside your body- does it feel tense, relaxed, warm, cool, tingly etc. Whatever is there just breathe and allow it. Don’t TRY to judge it or fix it.
6. Then take your attention inside the trunk of your body, especially the front- your belly, solar plexus and chest. Notice what you can feel there. This is where you find your emotions and more subtle feelings. Whatever it is, again just breathe into it and allow it. Even if you feel blank or numbness, that is also a feeling.
7. Stay with whatever is happening until it shifts. Listen for the language of your heart in this place. Have an open mind, a solution or new ease, choice or beginning will arise.
With practice these steps take only moments and are life changing. The struggle disappears, the heart opens and ease follows.
This is the joy that deep relationship offers- when the unceasing struggle between Egos invites the desire to end the pain and
trust the surrender into the heart. That rather than avoid or leave you stay, surrender and connect in a way that offers so much more than your Ego alone has ever known. You bring all of who you are to the relationship.
This is also why Tantric lovemaking is more than the physical. For rather than the Ego’s momentary goal of orgasm you access the power of your R Brain through your senses, feelings, internal images and move into extended extraordinary reality…
Oh, and by the way, if you want to know what happened on the mountain, eventually I ran out of arguments, went silent and the guys took this as assent and pushed me and my Ego over the edge…where it dissolved in an overcharged screaming heap of adrenaline release that shifted into a huge enjoyment of the moment!