We Live At A Distance From Our Depths – 5 quotes from Sandra Maitri’s book – The Spiritual Dimension of the Enneagram: Nine Faces of the Soul
by Mark Votava
1. We live at a distance from our depths
“In the course of working on ourselves, we learn in time that when we stay on the surface of ourselves, which is to say when we are identified with and operating from our outer shell – our personality – we suffer. The more asleep we are to the reality beneath our shells, the less we feel that life is fulfilling, meaningful, and pleasurable. Or, in the language of the enneagram, the more fixated we are, the less we partake of the loving nature of reality… We suffer because we are living at a distance from our depths – it’s as simple as that. The more our souls are infused with Being, the better we feel and the better life seems to us, no matter what our outer circumstances happen to be.”
2. Who we are is Essence
“When we perceive in this unquestionable way that who we are is Essence, our souls have undergone a radical transformation. The way we experience the world and ourselves is dramatically different from how it was prior to this shift in consciousness. We are no longer believers and seekers but have become identified with Being as who and what we are. This, then, is a particular way of conceiving enlightenment…”
3. To feel truly in contact with ourselves
“As our development progresses, to feel truly in contact with ourselves means to be in touch with Being… Only when we are profoundly in the moment and our consciousness is anchored in its depths do we feel that we have arrived at our center. At this stage, we know ourselves to be Being.”
4. The more balanced and in harmony we feel
“So the closer we are to our depths, the more in balance and in harmony we feel… This explains why being in touch with the truth of our experience and revealing ourselves as we are makes us feel good, even if what we are getting in touch with or expressing is something we don’t like seeing or disclosing about ourselves. We are moving deeper into ourselves, and so our souls are closer to and more infused with the goodness of True Nature. Being more deeply in touch with ourselves just feels better than not being in touch… Contact with Being affects us in an agreeable, beneficial, and constructive way, making the struggles and difficulties of becoming more conscious worth our time, energy, and devotion.”
5. Fully existing in the now
“Movement and change take place in this eternal now, this infinity of presence, and this is the unfoldment of Being. Abiding in this flow of Being is abiding in ‘real time,’ and this brings us to the primary implication of this understanding of Holy Work. It is that real work is the endeavor of becoming conscious of our True Nature as Being. This is the holiest work a human being can engage in… This work of real transformation only takes place when we are living in real time, which is another way of saying when we are present, fully existing in the now…”
Why is it so difficult to live fully in the now?
My new book The Mystical Imagination: Seeing the Sacredness of All of Life (2015) is finally done! It is available on kindle and paperback!
“Our crowded, overly-consumed, hyper-active, digitally-addicted lifestyle is draining the life out of us. We are desperate to transcend the chaos and find a better way to live. We need a mystical imagination. Get ready to be transported into the depths of meaning as Votava breaks open the contemplative path and shows you how to live your life to the fullest.” Phileena Heuertz, author of Pilgrimage of a Soul: Contemplative Spirituality for the Active Life and founding partner, Gravity, a Center for Contemplative Activism
My first book The Communal Imagination: Finding a Way to Share Life Together (2014) is available on kindle and paperback also!
“Inside everyone there is a longing for community, to love and be loved. We are made in the image of a communal God. But in our hyper-mobile, individualistic, cluttered world… community is an endangered thing. And community is like working out – it takes work, sweat, discipline… without that our muscles atrophy. Everybody wants to be fit, but not too many people want to do the work to get there. Mark’s book is sort of a workout manual, helping you rediscover your communal muscles and start building them up slowly. It is an invitation to live deep in a shallow world.” Shane Claiborne, author and activist