- Barbara Alexander, MA, MDiv
First Person Face of Spirit
The First Person Face of Spirit begins the exploration of the three perspectives through which we experience Ultimate Reality, called by many and varied names in the spiritual traditions of the world.
Of the three perspectives (represented in four quadrants) individuals seem to lean toward one perspective, as do the spiritual paths ancient and modern. One of the cornerstones of Integral Theory is that each perspective represents a partial view of what’s true.
Experiencing the Ultimate from all three perspectives allows for a more complete and inclusive experience. It is also well to remember that each perspective “points to” the Ultimate, which is beyond description. As you read this “pointing out” perspective, notice how you respond to the First Face. Do you find it familiar? Odd? Uncomfortable? Reassuring? Noticing your own reaction is a clue to the perspective you inhabit most fully.
Seeking and experiencing Ultimate Reality from a first person perspective means awakening fully to the Ultimate within. Meditation, chanting, sensing the Presence that animates us are ways to move into what is often called the Witness or the space in which thoughts and feelings arise. The illusion that we are separate selves is replaced by the sense of being one with all that is.
The writings of many of the saints, sages and mystics portray their first person experience of God. Their words convey the certainty that our essence is pure Spirit.
I am that which is highest. I am that which is lowest. I am that which is! – Julian of Norwich
We will know what both the fullness and the fulfillment of life mean only when the consciousness that the Spirit is our own very self, comes to life within us. – Paul Brunton from Perspectives
About the Author
Barbara Alexander is a change agent whose passion is human growth and development. She has a M.A. in Counseling Psychology, with a post graduate certificate in Gestalt Therapy and practiced as a licensed psychotherapist for 20 years. During this time she consulted and provided training in the private and non-profit sectors. She also taught Gestalt Therapy. Learn more about Barbara here.