The Banyan Shades

The Untethered soul.

In this blog, we are going to talk about The Untethered Soul, written by Michael A. Singer. The book teaches us how to move towards freedom. This freedom is much more personal. In my personal opinion, this individual freedom is the basis of all other kinds of liberty we may want to experience as a collective.

Freedom and Bondage.

How to be free and what binds us are the subjects that the book addresses. Before starting, I would like to mention that Michael Singer has written another phenomenal book called The Surrender Experiment. Have you ever been in a state where you are walking down the street, laughing with your friends, and suddenly, you are caught off-guard, as if you are there doing all of those things but that’s not it? You might have felt completely content at the moment, yet surprised at your sudden detachment. You could have asked the question: what else there is to life? Michael A. Singer beautifully answers this question in this book. In Chapter 4, he writes, “There is a type of dream, called a lucid dream, in which you know that you are dreaming. If you fly in the dream you know that you are flying…You are actually conscious enough to know that you are flying in the dream and that you are dreaming the dream.”



The point is: awareness. The detachment you felt in the busy marketplace, or even chatting with your family over a cup of tea was a moment of awareness. And the author says: “ When you are an aware being, you are no longer completely immersed in the events around you. Instead, you remain inwardly aware that you are the one who is experiencing both the events and the corresponding thoughts and emotions.” Awareness is the foundation for all self-help and an empowered life.

Michael Singer’s own journey towards total awareness began with a little voice in his head. For example, each one of us might say, “I am going to call him now.” The inspection process starts with asking the question: “Who is speaking?”.

How to gain Self-awareness?

Another introductory and powerful method is hearing or watching the mental chatter and not agreeing/disagreeing with it. Let the tape in your mind play, and don’t react. The chatter of the mind is described as an inner roommate, who can be troublesome at times. What do we do with it? The author neatly writes: “To be aware that you are watching the voice talk is to stand on the threshold of a fantastic inner journey.” Self-examination is the key to awareness. In Chapter 3 of the book, the author borrows from Ramana Maharishi’s self-examination tool. Ramana Maharisi advised his disciples to continuously ask this question to one self: “Who am I?” This question is supposed to deliver us to our inner freedom. When we start to notice our experiences or thoughts and emotions, we realize they pass through us. That is: they are temporary; they don’t remain static. Singer writes: “Eventually you will get to a point where you realize that you, the experiencer, have a certain quality. And that quality is awareness, consciousness, and an intuitive sense of existence.” The message of the book is very clear. By embarking on the road to self-awareness, we came closer to personal freedom.

You can read more about awareness through the book Inner Miracles.



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