You are not who you think you are. Your thoughts are ideas you have about who you are, but what is it that is aware of these thoughts? Thoughts are arising and disappearing within your consciousness, or awareness. Consciousness is not a thing or something you can perceive, so it seems like nothing, and it’s easily overlooked. You don’t notice that your mind is not actually what is aware and conscious but, rather, something that is beyond the mind and not circumscribed by it. Awareness lies beyond the mind. If this were not so, you wouldn’t be able to be aware of the mind.

Because you can’t put your finger on consciousness or describe it, it seems like consciousness isn’t real, and yet it’s more real than any thought and even more real than the objects that make up this reality. Consciousness is the stuff that creates all of it. You could say that the Source is consciousness, but anything you call the Source separates it from the rest of reality and limits it, and it isn’t separate from anything else. For instance, if you call the Source “consciousness,” that implies that there are separate objects that this consciousness is aware of, when in reality the objects of awareness are consciousness as well. Words can’t elucidate this Mystery.

You are consciousness. You are that which is aware. You are not your thoughts or your body or your personality. You are not the person you think you are. These are just thoughts, which are part of an image you have of yourself. Who you think you are is really just an image of yourself. This image is by no means universal, since your self image is constantly changing, and other people have their own images of you, which also change. You think you know who you are, but who are you? You pretend to know. Just as you pretend you are this self that you imagine yourself to be, you pretend this self is solid, static, and real. This sense of self seems so real that you are willing to do almost anything to protect and uphold it.

It takes a lot of energy to think yourself into existence. You have to keep holding a self image in mind and identifying with it, or you fall back into an experience of just consciousness, which feels like nothingness. To most, this nothingness is scarier than any thought, so you run back to your thoughts to reconstruct yourself. You feel safe inside your thoughts. At least you feel like you know who you are.

Your body is not you any more than your thoughts are. You can argue that your body is real because it exists as physical matter, but is it yours? And is it who you are? Or is it more like a vehicle you’ve borrowed so that you can have a joy ride? If everything is consciousness, then consciousness would need to attach itself to a body in order to have an experience. By doing this, it can have a unique experience through that body. The body provides a vehicle for experiencing physical life. Without it, consciousness can’t move or speak or work or play or do any of the other myriad things it does.

Your conditioning and language lead you to believe that this body is yours. You take ownership of this vehicle because you were taught—conditioned—to take ownership of it. You learn that a certain name (your name) goes with a certain body (your body). You learn to play the game the way it’s meant to be played here on the physical plane, in this illusory world where consciousness plays.

For consciousness to have experiences through you, it’s necessary for you to forget who you really are—at least for a while. You are programmed to forget that you are consciousness and the creator of all of it. This way, you become lost in this character you are playing and the dramas it becomes caught up in. This is how consciousness has experience, which it otherwise could not have. If you are undifferentiated consciousness, what would there be to be aware of? Consciousness had to differentiate to have experience, and one way it did this was to take on physical form.

So here you are—the forms that consciousness has taken on in order to have experience. That is why each of you is so unique—there would be no point in duplicating an experience. The uniqueness of every living thing is a clue to what the Source is up to.

Author's Bio: 

Copyright © 2007 Gina Lake. All rights reserved.

Excerpted from Living Your Destiny: How to Live the Life that Is Meant for You by Gina Lake.

Gina Lake has a Masters degree in Counseling Psychology and over twenty years experience supporting people in their spiritual growth as an astrologer and a channel. She is the author of several books on spirituality, including: Radical Happiness, Anatomy of Desire, Return to Essence, Choosing Love, Getting Free, and Living Your Destiny. Gina is available for astrological and channeled phone consultations that support awakening and living a conscious life. For more information or to order any of these books, to read excerpts, or to download Radiance: Experiencing Divine Presence for free, please visit http://www.radicalhappiness.com