That is, when you come to be able to live the life you were meant to live – before being born –
Before getting “beaten up” by family, society, and culture
And “molded” – with or without your active participation –
Into an “ego” that occasionally reflects aspects of your true self – but frequently does not.
Zen people call this true self – our “original face.”
To illustrate the weight of mask upon which your roles are typically displayed –
Start by relaxing your facial muscles –
Then check to see whether your face still remains tight –
If so, try to let your face become as “liquid” as possible – completely non-judgmental –
Until you’re left with as un-tense a face as possible.
That’s as close, without a lot of additional spiritual work,
That you’ll be able to get to your “original face” for now –
A face that exhibits your naked heart –
A face that reflects your essential being –
Once you become nothing – that is, no thing,
You instantly become a door –
A spiritual door that, once entered,
It’s possible to find your “true self.”
Surprisingly, it doesn’t take much “work” to surrender one’s ego
Since it’s only “dead weight” accumulated from birth –
Manufactured and transmitted by culture, politics, society, and religion.
It’s surprisingly easy to find your true self – the easiest thing in the world –
But does take courage
Because you have to give up everything –
That is, the glorious ego you pieced together over a lifetime.
Easy, because you’re already “there” – beyond ego – without consciously knowing it –
Yes, it’s true, you can find your “true self” at any moment –
Your very own spiritual “pearl.”
“God’s ground and the soul’s ground are one ground.” Meister Eckhart
In other words, God’s essence and the soul’s essence are the same to great mystics
And that’s why no one will ever know God who doesn’t first know herself –
Socrates was the first Westerner to understand this.
God spends her time coming to know her own evolving universal “self” –
Using humanity as a “compass” to stay on track.
Eckhart’s “ground” is where the holy hits “base” spiritually –
Beyond all concepts, languages, and belief systems.
This “ground” is where God and the true self
Are falling deeply in love –
Preparing to join in a beautiful marriage of God and humanity –
Known to Jesus, familiarly, as “God’s Kingdom” –
This is the party to which we’ve been invited from day one.
A true God and a true self can be experienced in much the same way
Since annihilating one’s ego leaves nothing behind.
Without such ego annihilation, God will only be experienced as a cartoon God
Projected onto the blank screen of a cartoon self.
In other words, a “true” God is found
Only beyond the God who we require to perform on a weekly basis
Distant from the farthest reach of the human mind –
Deep inside our wild heart –
Where Love, and nothing but Love, eternally resides.
The ego is a natural trash collector –
As soon as it feels any space opening up
It immediately refills itself – generally with some new species of “trash” –
And that’s why there’s never any room for God or one’s “true self.”
The most elevated spiritual path ever discovered by mystics was “emptying out” –
Literally, “everything” has got to go! – especially all one’s favorite treasures.
So, after all the work and time spent cleaning out our ego-self,
What’ll be left is “no-thing”
Which provides us with the space to be “born again”
Which also provides us with space for reality to enter our lives –
In other words, room for God to be welcome in our hearts.