Image by Gerd Altmann
Your Big Soul is like the sun, constantly radiating its loving glow.
From the Toltec perspective, every human contains a unique ray of light that is his or her individual manifestation of spirit in form. This eternal part of us, or what we call our Big Soul, remembers its connection to source and all of life. It does not see itself as different or special but as one facet of a multifaceted, divinely radiant jewel.
Your relationship to your Little Soul, and whether it is connected or disconnected from your Big Soul, is the crucial factor for whether your life is filled with struggle and separation or with joyful ease and a sense of wholeness. Your Little Soul is important -- it is your separate sense of self and your quirky, unique personality. When your Little Soul and your Big Soul are allied, you flourish in the delight of your own integrity, your own wholeness.
Do you remember what it was like to live joyfully, filled with child-awe and dedicated to playful exploration—or have you watched young kids do so? You can have that same love of life, resiliency, and enthusiasm as an adult too. It’s just a matter of learning how to reconnect.
But there is a reason it can be so difficult to remember this peaceful place within, what we call ego-personality, or Little Soul. This part of us believes we are separate and will actually fight to stay alone, aloof, and miserable.
When our Little Soul loses its way and grasps onto fearful thoughts (such as I’m not good enough, I need to be perfect, or Bad things are going to happen to me or to the ones I love), it becomes more and more difficult to hear the loving voice of our Big Soul. For most adults, the circle of our physical/mental/emotional self has become filled with fears and judgments that obscure the light of our inner sun.
The once-seamless connection between our spiritual nature and our physical form is torn. Instead of making choices from the wisdom of our bountiful Big Soul allied with our ego-personality, we begin to identify more and more with the Little Soul thoughts of who we “should” be rather than the Big Soul–Little Soul union of who we truly are.
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Piercing Through The Illusion of Separateness
No matter how lost you feel, how much you are suffering, or how deeply ingrained your stories or agreements are, at any moment, your Little Soul can choose to pierce through the illusion of separateness to return home to the ancient and wise guidance of your Big Soul. This takes a willingness (and a constantly honed skill) to release the stories of the past and turn toward the truth of this present moment. It is in the present that we can cut through the illusion of our old, fear-based agreements and reconnect our Little Soul with the calm, peaceful, and steady love of our Big Soul.
The love and comfort your Little Soul seeks will not be filled by the temporary pleasures of life. No matter how good the wine, how abundant the chocolate, or how many likes and comments you have on Facebook, when your Little Soul is disconnected from your Big Soul, all relief is transitory. But even in your darkest times, your Big Soul holds up a lantern, waiting patiently for your wandering Little Soul to come home. The path back to Big Soul is there but is simply obscured by the walls you have built.
Keep stepping out of your Little Soul’s perspective and hold the big-picture view. You are not your Little Soul. You are not the fear-based structures that lie between your Little Soul and Big Soul. And you are not just your Big Soul. You are Little Soul and Big Soul, both yearning to be re united.
When you learn to witness the totality of your physical/mental/emotional being through the eyes of Big Soul rather than through the eyes of Little Soul, every thing changes. With this one perceptual shift, you can go from feeling stuck to being full of ease, from a place of judgment to one of compassion, from a state of annoyance to one of ac ceptance. But learning to stabilize Big Soul perspective can take a lifetime. This is why we need tools like the Warrior Heart practice to help us break down the walls, at first brick by brick, and then wall by wall, ultimately allowing our Little Soul to be freed from its self-imposed jail so that it can see new possibilities and perspectives.
Big Soul Is Always Holding Out A Hand
Your Big Soul doesn’t impatiently demand that your Little Soul be different. Your Big Soul isn’t addicted to caretaking or fixing the Little Soul. It knows that the Little Soul will eventually figure its way through the fog and break down the false walls. Remember, Big Soul is like an ancient grandma who patiently and sweetly invites you to remember that you are so much more than your beliefs and fears.
Your Big Soul eternally whispers to your Little Soul, “You are enough exactly the way you are. You are all of creation. You are loved. You are perfect the way you are.” Your Big Soul is always holding out a hand and saying, “Let’s explore and create in this wonderful world of taste, touch, sight, sound, and feeling!”
While your Big Soul constantly sends your Little Soul, your little lost ego-personality, love notes and trails of bread crumbs leading the way home, it can be hard to see the path. The quiet, steady voice of your Big Soul can easily be drowned out by the noise of your stories. The moments of grace, the peaceful pauses, and the exhilarating insights are often quickly swamped with unsupportive thoughts and emotional reactions.
This is why you can have awareness of a pattern or habit you want to transform, but find it nearly impossible to change your behavior. If you have ever wanted to stop thinking about an ex, or refrain from being upset by your boss’s curtness, or have faith but instead find yourself anxious and worried about your future, you know how fixated and freaked out your Little Soul can be.
Embodying Your Choice and Presence
Having a desire of what you want in your life is only a start. It is not enough to simply understand that you should not judge yourself or to understand intellectually that you are safe even when someone is angry at you. The question is, how do you fully embody your choice and presence in each moment rather than just thinking about it or wishing for it?
This is the path of the Warrior Heart, which will help connect the stormy waters of your fear-based thoughts and emotions to reconnect your Big Soul and your Little Soul. Instead of fighting your Little Soul or trying to force the waters of your mind and emotions to be calm, let’s build a bridge. Just as it took time to build the old structures of fear and separation, it will take action and focus to lay a new pathway between your Big Soul and ego-personality.
Your Warrior Heart awakens the moment you start loving the journey of reconnecting your Little Soul to your Big Soul’s loving guidance and grace. It is about accepting all of you, big and little, whether your experience is blissful expansion or painful contraction. Being a Warrior of the Heart brings you back into alignment with the beauty of all of you, including your Little Soul ego-personality. It is this acceptance that clears the smoke and bridges the gap between your Big Soul and your Little Soul. And once this happens, everything changes as you realign with your true, wise inner self.
Reconnecting Big Soul and Little Soul
There are two main actions that reconnect your Big Soul and your Little Soul. The first is to do more of what you love. (Isn’t that a great assignment?) Doing more of what you love can actually be more difficult to do than it seems. Here’s why.
When you do something you love (like hiking or dancing or daydreaming or running or knitting or what ever floats your boat!), you get completely and happily lost in the activity. Your mind quiets, and in that space, your Little Soul and Big Soul are united again, able to work together creatively toward solutions or simply enjoy being. You don’t have any need to explain, defend, judge, or worry. All is right in the world, because your Little Soul is in the present moment, holding hands with your Big Soul.
Losing yourself through doing things you love is very different from using an activity to numb or distract yourself (like compulsive drinking or shopping). The same action can reconnect your Little Soul with your Big Soul or create even more separation, depending on the intention you are bringing to it.
While substances that alter your consciousness can be useful for getting past the mind and merging with your Big Soul, they are best used as a flashlight that points you in the direction you want to go so that you can then find your way there on your own, rather than use it as a crutch that will ultimately cause more harm.
So your first task is to do more of what you love so you touch the happy-wise place within you.
Awareness, Transformation, and Intent
Your second task is cleaning out every thing that is between Little Soul and your Big Soul. This means facing and dissolving all the agreements, fears, false beliefs, past trauma, hurts, and stuck places.
Now, cleaning is not usually considered a very glamorous or enticing spiritual or healing endeavor. We would much rather have things dis appear or change on their own or have someone to come in and clean things up for us. Or sometimes we hope that if we just go to enough workshops or see the right healer or meditate just the right way, we can somehow skip straight to blissful enlightenment (or at least be free of our mind’s insanity).
In the Toltec teachings, there are three main levels of mastery: awareness, transformation, and intent. In the first level, you learn to become aware of your thoughts, emotions, and body, without judgment or victimization. As your awareness grows, you see and take action on what agreements and habits you want to transform.
Instead of being stuck repeating the same patterns and responding with the same emotional reactions, you begin to consciously transform how you behave and think. As you change your thinking and behaviors, you align more and more with your Big Soul’s wisdom instead of your Little Soul’s fear. And eventually, you step into living from intent, which means living in inspiration, faith, and connection to your Big Soul.
My philosophy is this: May we become immersed in doing things we love, or use every thing in our lives to help us clean up what blocks us from loving the moment we are in. There are plenty of challenges in our lives, and avoiding or ignoring the challenges is not the pathway to freedom. Your freedom comes from learning to courageously face your challenges as opportunities to clean out false beliefs and old, heavy emotions.
And for this, you need a Warrior Heart.
Take a few moments to write in a journal to help you uncover the Little Soul stories you tell yourself. Use these questions to guide you. Write without thinking, and see what you learn about both your foundational agreements and the walls that your Little Soul has created to feel safe.
* What sort of experiences do you find happening in your life over and over again?
* What beliefs or agreements did you learn from your parents?
* How do you feel about yourself?
* How do you feel about the world?
* What things do you judge about yourself the most?
* How do you judge others?
* What beliefs or agreements are limiting you?
©2020 by HeatherAsh Amara. All Rights Reserved.
Excerpted with permission from the book: The Warrior Heart Practice.
Publisher: St Martin's Essential, www.stmartins.com.
Warrior Heart Practice
by HeatherAsh Amara
A revolutionary process based on the four chambers of the heart and rooted in Toltec wisdom that brings emotional clarity, healing, and freedom. The Warrior Heart Practice is a powerful new method to reconnect with our sense of authenticity and inner-knowing and realign with our true nature. Author of the bestselling book Warrior Goddess Training, HeatherAsh Amara has trained extensively in the Toltec tradition under the tutelage of don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements. (Also available as a Kindle edition, an Audiobook, and an Audio CD.)
About the Author
HeatherAsh Amara is the author of a number of books including the 'Warrior Goddess Training' series. She brings an openhearted, inclusive worldview to her writings and teachings, which are a rich blend of Toltec wisdom, European shamanism, Buddhism, and Native American ceremony. She travels and teaches throughout the United States as well as internationally. She is the founder of Toci—the Toltec Center of Creative Intent. Visit her website to learn more at HeatherashAmara.com