Grail Alchemy: Initiation in the Celtic Mystery Tradition by Mara Freeman

grail-book_14Grail Alchemy: Initiation in the Celtic Mystery Tradition

by Mara Freeman

Excerpt: Connecting with the Higher Self

It will take most of us countless lifetimes to attain the union of Soul and Spirit, an achievement we usually associate with a few exceptional men and women like Theresa of Avila, Meister Eckhart, Ramana Maharshi, or the Buddha: those whom we call mystics or enlightened ones who have achieved a state of direct union with God or the Absolute. Yet we do in fact have access to a high spiritual source through a Higher Self (sometimes called the Divine Self) which resides within each of us and with whom we can make a connection. In some esoteric circles the Higher Self is called the Holy Guardian Angel, and regarded as one of the angelic kingdom who resides outside of ourselves and who walks by our side as a guide and mentor from birth to death. Yet, as Dion Fortune writes, it is not a separate entity at all:

The Higher Self is a single, unified whole, which builds up around the Divine Spark, which is the nucleus of each human manifestation.

This spiritual influence emanates from the highest Source, the Great Spirit, Radiant Mystery or Absolute, yet is ‘stepped down’ in frequency so that the human nervous system can handle the energy. For readers familiar with the Qabalistic Tree of Life, this is the equivalent of raising one’s consciousness to the level of the sphere of Tifaret where the spiritual force can flow down from Keter and be grounded at Malkut on the Middle Pillar.

Once you have been able to sense a connection with your Higher Self you will find it is always present to be of help and guidance when called upon, especially if you are in crisis. You may experience it as male, female, neither, or both. It is a wise and loving mentor and guide, ever present to help each of us grow and evolve to our highest capacity in the current lifetime. The Higher Self is not as interested in what you are doing as much as who you are becoming, how much you are willing to open to the Light of Spirit and let it shine through all that you do and are while you are here on Earth.

It is the personal tutor of your soul, whose role is to gently instruct, encourage and awaken you to the qualities of compassion, wisdom, tolerance, generosity, patience, humor, detachment, and inner peace. The Higher Self is the one that heightens our consciousness at those times when the world seems shot through with an otherworldly beauty and joy; or we feel inspired and ennobled, and can see beyond all doubt the perfect unfolding of the tapestry of our lives, and perhaps even catch a glimpse of the Weaver at work on the Loom of the Universe. Above all, the Higher Self is always there, waiting patiently for us to open to the pure, unconditional love and healing it has to offer us on our earthly journey.

When we quieten the Ego enough so that the soul opens to allow the Light of Spirit, to shine in via the Higher Self – we fill our inner Grail with divine energies. The processes described in this chapter will give you a way to open the necessary channels and begin to make contact with the divine being within you. After that, your progress is entirely dependent on how willing you are to make a commitment to your spiritual growth, which requires a great deal of one-pointed intention and disciplined practice. Even more important is the willingness to surrender our little self to the Greater – a concept that the Ego is guaranteed to resist with every fiber of its being!


Seeing with the Eyes of the Soul

Wellesley Tudor Pole once wrote:

One great truth has become my constant companion. I sum it up thus: “Empty yourself if you would be filled.” The Waters of Life can never flow through me until I have surrendered my whole self.

Each of us is already connected with the soul within – after all, the soul is who we really are! The challenge is to consciously know this at more than the intellectual level: to be living our lives as much as we can from the perspective of the soul. There are as many different ways of doing this as there are spiritual paths, east and west, and such methods usually come under the heading of ‘meditation.’

There are of course many different varieties of meditation, and one of the simplest and most effective methods is a Yogic practice called Inner Silence. It is a way of learning to see with the ‘eyes of the soul.’ Practicing the Inner Silence meditation allows the mind to process and release material that has been buried in your subconscious for a long time. Your psyche becomes less encumbered and cluttered with unwanted patterns of thinking, negative programming, and old psychological issues.

This is what Tudor Pole means by ’emptying yourself’ so that you can become a clear, still channel able to receive spiritual influence from a higher plane of being. It is a subtle form of meditation – simple, but not easy – but is an essential first step towards disengaging from the constant clamor of the egoic mind in order to identify with the serene and unperturbed field of the soul, and come to know that this is truly who you are.

Grail Alchemy: Initiation in the Celtic Mystery Tradition by Mara Freeman © 2014 Destiny Books. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Inner Traditions International.


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