Soul or Spirit is at the core of the Mind Body connection while at the same time surrounding and intertwining it. We cannot perceive Spirit we can only experience it.
But are Spirit and Soul the same? Well, yes and no. Again, it always depends on our personal experience.
To use an analogy, are parental love and love towards a spouse the same? At the core they are the same, because they are both Love.
But when we first begin to experience either we are definitely convinced, although similar, that they are not the same. Our experience of love greatly depends on which aspect - body, mind or spirit - we identify ourselves with.
Let's first look how soul and spirit relate to body and mind. If you have read the Spirit Mind Body Connection you already know that Graphic 1 is a cross-section of the very simplified model described there.
At first glance we see that the body is within the mind and the mind within the spirit.
The orange ring of the body symbolizes here our sensual perception: That what we hear, feel, see, smell and taste.
The black ring between the outer mind and the sensual perception symbolizes the sensual perception screen.
This dense perception screen basically reflects an image of the whole world around us. It becomes our reality. What ever we perceive is separated into bodies, shapes, sizes, colours, smells, textures and so on.
Since we can perceive neither mind nor spirit with our physical senses, these two aspects never show up on our perception screen of the world. The experience of the "external" mind and spirit presence remains hidden from our awareness.
We do experience feelings and thoughts within ourselves which we locate within the same space as our body. We named this inner awareness the conscious mind or consciousness.
In What is Consciousness? you will find an illustration of consciousness inspired by A Course in Miracles.
Since we do experience our internal mind, we know that other people also have a mind. But we are convinced that our minds and theirs are separated.
How could we not be convinced when all we see on our perception screen is separated?
Experiencing ourselves as fragile bodies, which only have a certain amount of time to live and can die at any moment, we become afraid for its safety. We feel we need to protect it from the many dangers which the perception screen reflects to us.
We recieve an incredible amount of information from the world around us and only a very small part we need for use in our conscious mind.
The rest we store in our subconscious mind, our very personal memory bank.
The subconscious mind is the the purple ring within the body. The purple-grey ring within it closest to the body or the conscious mind, symbolizes the level of fear.
This level of fear contains all the experienced or surpressed negative emotions, which have their source in fear.
Most of us avoid dealing with anything that has to do with our fears. So we put a tight lid - or tight ring in our graphic - between our conscious experience of ourselves and the threatening impulses coming up from the fear level and forget about it.
Now we perceive ourselves isolated within the body. On the outside we rely on the five sense information, unable to perceive anything that is beyond the perception of our senses.
On the inside we are paralyzed by our fear, avoiding any venturing within the realms beyond our conscious mind. If we believe the body is all there is, why would we want to journey within?
We believe there is nothing beyond fear worth discovering. The same as we once believed the earth was flat and there was nothing beyond the scary sea except the great abyss.
When we do receive any impulses from further within ourselves we tend to filter it through that level of fear and judge them as physical reactions or phantasy.
For example, when we experience a special connection to another person, fixated on the body as we are, we believe feelings are mere chemical reactions in our brain.
In our graphic we see that Soul or Spirit is symbolized in white. Spirit is everywhere: within, without and holding it all together.
But, Spirit cannot be perceived. It can only be experienced. And we do. Soul or Spirit is Love at its purest. We receive love impulses all the time.
You, too! When you smile at a stranger, maybe at a child (safer encounter), you are expressing a love impulse. Giving up your seat in a crowded bus to let an older lady sit down is also a love impulse.
But often we don't follow these impulses, as disturbing fear impulses travel with them into our awareness.
Fear can become the sole safety indicator for our lives. If we allow this to happen, and most of us do, we rely on fear instead of love. As a result we may end up denying the existence of love altogether and lead a very unhappy life.
If we are not prepared to venture within and undo fear, everything that lays beyond our body remains hidden from our awareness, and therefore stays inaccessible. That includes the true power of the mind.
The good news is, you can change what you want to experience and with that change connect to the power of your mind.
Coming up soon: