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  • Writer's pictureBarry Shirley


Hi Guys. In this December 2022/January 2023 blog (joint Issue 35), I contemplate the impact of; ‘’Letting Your Light Shine”.

NB These first two paragraphs are the same in all my blogs – so feel free to skip them if not a newcomer. As in my previous blogs, I will draw on the views and opinions of past and current masters, sages, mystics, gurus, philosophers and generally wise people. I also tap into worldly belief systems, religions and philosophies to draw on ancient knowledge and wisdom. So, if you are beginning to realise there is more to this life than you think, and you have the merest hint of something happening in yourself – read on.

These monthly blog posts are designed for those interested in mindfulness/spirituality/philosophy and will only give you a taste of the information, knowledge and wisdom that is out there (and all points raised can easily be further researched). I must emphasise that I am simply coordinating the knowledge and information that I am able to access, gather and present with lots of excerpts. I will also include text from my previous blogs as appropriate.

It has been said, “Your eyes are the windows to your soul.” It is not clear who originated this well-known phrase or proverb but if you look into your own eyes in the mirror you can see something there. Is this a component of the so-called ‘Light Within’ and the essence of who we are in a spiritual sense? It is obvious that we are basically self-aware as human beings, but can we take that beyond the mental and sense aspects of our existence?

I have written previously on the concept of a spiritual journey and I don’t regard it as being connected to any religious doctrine, dogma or ecclesiastical aspects.

Religion normally introduced to you through the culture you were born into, may obliquely or eventually guide you to spirituality. Whereas, spirituality or Self- awareness (i.e. to be aware of your consciousness or the animating force within) is something you will generally discover through your own intuition or ‘knowing’.

This faculty of 'intuitive' discernment’ is also defined as the ‘Buddhi’ (in Hindu, Buddhism, Jainism and eastern philosophy).

The Buddhi (Sanskrit word) is responsible for being able to be the discriminating connection between Prakriti (primal matter/nature/material world) and Atman/Purusha (i.e. your soul/the source). The Buddhi is the vehicle taking you to your, generally, brief spiritual experiences – to the source (which is pure perfect and complete). These are felt as incredibly positive feelings that cannot be ordinarily explained. Maybe felt when holding a new-born baby or experiencing sunrise/sunset, meditating, being in the flow and where you specifically experiencing a sudden and striking/powerful realisation or epiphany (i.e. a momentary enlightenment).

Thinking is not human consciousness but an awareness of ourselves. Rene Descartes, French philosopher, scientist and mathematician (1596/1650) famously said, “I think therefore I am” (cogito ergo sum). This is widely accepted as falling short of the concept of ‘I am’ (i.e. an awareness of one’s animating essence). His epic statement really should be interpreted as, “I think therefore I am ego” (i.e. thinking has occurred). We are much more unconscious than we think we are and need a link/trigger to connect to and understand our inner Self.

Our egoic self identifies with habitual thinking and cultural/social conditioning (mainly fear and attachments that control you, not unlike the fear and hatred we now receive through the darker aspects of news/social media feeds). The ego is an identity that we have constructed for ourselves that does not come from our true inner Self (i.e. it is almost a form of programming). The ego is constantly looking to reaffirm itself – try to break through these habitual thoughts and controlling attachments to diminish the ego.

Baba Ram Das (aka Professor Richard Alpert 1931/2019) was an American psychologist and spiritual teacher and, in relation to our ego, stated, “In most of our human relationships, we spend much of our time reassuring one another that our costumes of identity are on straight.” Just try to be your authentic self.

Those on a spiritual journey will recognise a certain spiritual light or energy/power emanating through and beyond the mental emotional and physical levels of your human existence.

There are many texts and treatise on the concept of the existence of consciousness, human energy, vibration and frequency (see also my blog, issue number 29 ‘Forces in Nature’). These concepts have been written about and contemplated throughout the ages with modern science providing theoretical evidence on some of these aspects (NB however, the definition of consciousness itself seems to escape them so far – see article on UK Physicist Sir Roger Penrose who postulates that consciousness is beyond quantum physics.

In this inspirational article from the late Dr Wayne Dyer (1940/2015 – American Self-help author, motivational speaker) he reflects on the research and books of the late Dr David Hawkins MD PhD (1927/2012) who was an American psychiatrist, physician, researcher, author, spiritual teacher and lecturer.

Dr Dyer quotes Dr Hawkins; “In this interconnected universe, every improvement we make in our private world improves the world at large for everyone. We all float on the collective level of consciousness of mankind, so that any increment we add comes back to us. We all add to our common buoyancy by our efforts to benefit life. It is a scientific fact that I what is good for you is good for me.”

Dr Dyer then adds; “In essence, every single person, as well as large groups people can be calibrated for their energy levels. Generally speaking, low energy people cannot distinguish truth from falsehood. They can be told how to think, whom to hate, whom to kill; and they can be herded into a group-think mentality based on such trivial details as what side of the river they were born on, what their parents and their grandparents believed, the shape of their eyes, and hundreds of other factors having to do with appearance and total identification with their material world. Hawkins tells us that approximately 87 percent of humanity (now 8 billion!) calibrates at a collective energy level that weakens them.

The higher up the ladder of frequency vibration, the fewer people there are in those high levels. The highest levels are represented by the truly great person who originated spiritual patterns that multitudes have followed through the ages. They’re associated with divinity, and they set in motion attractor energy fields that influence all of humankind.”

Check out ‘Power vs Force’ (pub.1994 and 2014) and ‘Letting Go’ (pub.2012)

In an online article by Sant Rajinder Singh JI Maharaj (Head of the Science of Spirituality Organisation) on spiritual awareness (and the benefits of meditation) he makes the following observation:

“Connected to the limitless spiritual power within, we recognise the immortality of the soul and lose all fear of death. We embrace the oneness of all life. We realise we are connected to each other, knit together by the bonds of love. With this understanding, we treat others with love and respect. We become more compassionate, more tolerant, and more understanding. We become oblivious to outer differences of religion, culture, colour, and nationality, and we channel unconditional love of our empowered soul to all. We live human unity. We experience ourselves as reservoirs of Light, consciousness, and bliss.”

Prominent spiritual author Eckhart Tolle talks about becoming the “Light of world” and in his book ‘The Power of Now’ (pub 2005) wrote; “...the most effective way to contribute to the world is by transcending it. You then become a defacto instrument of peace and healing.” And at pages 201/202 he states; “You may remember that we talked about the dual nature of true compassion, which is awareness, of a common bond of shared mortality and immortality. At this deep level, compassion becomes healing in the widest sense. In that state, your healing influence is primarily based not on doing but on being.

Everybody you come in contact with will be touched by your presence and affected by the peace you emanate, whether they are conscious of it or not. When you are fully present and people around you manifest unconscious behaviour, you won’t feel the need to react to it, so you don’t give it any reality. Your peace is so vast and deep that anything that is not peace disappears into it as if it had never existed. This breaks the karmic cycle of action and reaction. Animals, trees, flowers

will feel your peace and respond to it. You teach through being, through demonstrating the peace of God. You become the ‘light of the world’, an emanation of pure consciousness, and so you eliminate suffering on the level of cause. You eliminate unconsciousness from the world.”See also;

Dr Deepak Chopra in his book ‘How to Know God’ (pub 2000) says, “Light, as used in scriptures always stands for awareness, whether or not physical light is actually seen. Christians regard Jesus as “the light of the world” because his state of higher consciousness, and the word ‘light’ is a synonym for a whole range of things, from inspiration and holiness to embodied spirit and God’s essence. Versions of the imagery are applied by followers of Buddha and Muhammad, of course, even though each religion makes claims of uniqueness for its founder.

The disputes among religions are almost always over exclusive claims that only their founder entered the light, or that his place before God is highest.

Awareness, though, is a common heritage, even a cosmic heritage if we accept the existence of mind at the quantum and virtual level. When asked what the experience of God feels like, people’s responses, different as they may be, all converge on a shift into higher awareness.” – pages 203/204.

Eastern philosophy and Vedanta (i.e. the most ancient scriptures of India whose basic teaching is, that our real nature is divine) can provide guidelines for humanity. The Bhagavad Gita is an ancient Sanskrit Hindu teaching at least 3-5 thousand plus years old.

The Gita basically describes an allegorical battle between the forces of ego and the higher Self, it does this with dialogue between Krishna, as the Supreme Soul teaching the warrior Arjuna (representing the best but flawed aspects of humanity) how to defeat the ego forces and discover the higher Self (The Gita is considered a mostly secular practical guide on living a spiritual life).

The entire text is a representation of the battle that goes on in our minds and represents a blueprint for solving the ethical and moral struggles of human life. In the text, Krishna also explains to Arjuna his duty to himself and others and the ultimate meaning and order of existence. Krishna reminds Arjuna that the Self is the ultimate goal of human experience.

Chapter 14, Sloka (verse) 11 says: “When the light of wisdom streams forth Sattva (i.e. purity, harmony, balance) is predominant.”

Sattva (Sanskrit) is one of the three Gunas (i.e. Sattva, Rajas & Tamas) which in Hindu philosophy and Vedanta are the primary energies that permeate everything in nature. Everything and everyone are powerfully affected by a combination and convergence of Tamas (darkness and chaos), Rajas (activity and passion) and Sattva (beingness and harmony). Whilst a person strives to be more in Sattvic energy in life, all of the Gunas will affect you individually or in combinatioCheck out ‘Power vs Force’ (pub.1994 and 2014) and ‘Letting Go’ (pub. 2012 And, a person pushing into or towards enlightenment will recognise the Self through being more Sattvic (see my blog issue 29 – Forces in Nature). Whilst a person strives to be more in Sattvic energy in life, all of the Gunas

At Sloka 26 of Chapter 14, Swami Parthasarathy in his translation of the third and fourth topics (Sloka’s 14-27) emphasises the importance of crossing the Gunas and attaining Self-realisation. The Swami also illustrates how Krishna explains to Arjuna the requirement for the three spiritual practices or paths of Jnana Yoga (path of Knowledge), Karma Yoga (path of Action) and Bhakti Yoga (path of Devotion) in a cumulative effort necessary to cross over the Gunas.

So, through the pathways of Jnana, Bhakti and Karma yoga, transcend all the Gunas, devoid of ego, and seek the Inner Light/the Source/ the Self – Let Your Light Shine!

Chapter 13, Sloka 18 says: “the Light even of lights, That is said to be beyond darkness; Knowledge (i.e. pure Consciousness), That which is to be known, Goal of knowledge (i.e. Self-realisation), seated in the hearts of all.” This Sloka as interpreted by Swami A. Parthasarathy explains that consciousness makes one aware of light and darkness which in this context can also mean knowledge and ignorance - and that Consciousness becomes the light of lights.

He goes on to further explain, “all knowledges known to mankind are conditioned knowledge. They must necessarily qualify some object or being. Your knowledge is always of something. But Brahman (absolute consciousness that, just Is – a single binding cosmic unity – the supreme Reality) is pure Knowledge with which you know any object of knowledge. Pure Awareness with which you become aware of the object of awareness. Pure Consciousness with which you become conscious of the object of consciousness. Brahman is that pure, objectless Knowledge.

…The philosophy of Vedanta culminates in absolute Knowledge, Atman (i.e. your soul), Brahman (i.e. Pure Consciousness). The Knowledge of your real Self. Your real Self is the supreme Core of your personality. Referred to as the heart of beings. Self-realisation therefore is the ultimate Goal of human existence.”


  • “An empowered soul is a soul that has recognized itself and is aware that it is the essence of who we really are, that is the guiding power behind the body and mind” – Sant Rajinder Singh JI Maharaj – b.1946 - Indian Spiritual Master –internationally recognised for his work promoting inner and outer peace – Head of SOS organisation.

  • “In the midst of darkness, light persists.” – Mahatma Gandhi – 1869/1948 – Indian Lawyer, political ethicist, Spiritual leader - leadership of the campaign for Indian independence from the British employing non-violent resistance and non-harm.

  • “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a cellar or under a basket, but on a stand, that those who come in may see the light. The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body is also full of light; but when it is evil, your body also is full of darkness. Therefore, see whether the light that is in you isn’t darkness. Therefore, your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, it will be wholly full of light, as when the lamp with its bright shining gives you light.” – Luke 11:33-36, World English Bible- Parable of Jesus Christ (attributed) – Sermon on The Mount.

  • “Your work is to discover who you are and then with all your heart give your light to the world.” – Jennifer Williamson – American author, creator of

  • “When you possess light within, you see it externally." Anaïs Nin – 1903/1997 French born American diarist, novelist.

Take away

  • We are all spiritual beings of light (having a journey in a human body) travelling back to the source – we all have the same light – smile and let that light shine!

  • Even when on the spiritual journey the ego does not hibernate – be ego aware!

  • Live by your inner truth – your dharma (i.e. the right way of living). Live in the moment, share and give love to others, know that nothing is permanent, practice gratitude, kindness and compassion, don’t judge, forgive others and yourself.

  • Recognise the oneness in everyone and that everyone is the same as you are - connected to the same inherent goodness – our true nature.

  • Also, try yoga, along with meditation – a natural combination for achieving overall well-being. If already practicing yoga and meditation – go deeper – they are both higher vibration activities! Nourish your mind body and spirit! Perhaps check out Yoga at the Makai Yoga Collective, Ocean Grove, Victoria, practiced in the ‘Garden Room.’

Compiled by Baz Shirley.


*See also:

Instagram: @bazabstractart - Facebook: Barry Shirley

And all my previous posts on:

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