“What do we do to reconnect to the experience of our essential nature and qualities of being? How do we proceed? First, we work on the personality, softening the structures of the psyche that have been created by the ego. As we do that, we create “space” for essence to rise into our experience and awareness. Essence can be very subtle as it comes into our experience, so we must develop a new sensitivity to the subtle levels of being. To do this, we must become quiet and present to the moment, present to the now, present to the truth of whatever we are experiencing in the moment.” by Karen Malik, MA Date: March – May 2006 http://media.noetic.org/uploads/files/S10_Malik_Essence_lr.pdf
When you get deep enough into consciousness, and the study thereof, everyone seems to be saying the same things with different words.
“Softening the structures of the psyche that have been created by ego” can be accomplished by psychotherapy, Zen, or anything that gets us questioning the nonsense ego feeds us.
“Creating space” is physical, emotional, spiritual, and social. We create space for others through forgiveness, decluttering, listening, etc. Emotional space is about not getting stuck in a small, claustrophobic, ego-bound position. Physical space is created by prioritizing our lives and eliminating objects that do not add value to it. Spiritual space is calmness, quietness, openness, and equanimity.
I became interested in silence, solitude, and listening as a Christian. It did not take many years to find out that American Christianity is among the noisiest of spiritualities. My spiritual depth diving led me to Eastern spiritualities. Many of the spiritual thinkers I found myself reading (i.e., Lao Tzu, Dainin Katagiri, Chogyam Trungpa, Shunryu Suzuki, the Buddha, etc.) were Asian. Their emphasis on harmony, simplicity, solitude, silence, humility, and oneness made sense of my ever-changing chaotic world. They gave me a bigger picture. Going to church gave me more words, which I value today only as a necessary yet wholly inadequate form of communication. Eastern thinkers gave me the motivation to seek silence for myself. They gave me the emotional, spiritual, and intellectual space to find things for myself. I am forever grateful to those who have had faith in my ability to think for myself, which doesn’t generally include Christian leaders, unfortunately.