Svadhyaya – Self-Study

Self-awareness is the first step toward freedom from the chains of the ego. The ego’s job is to identify self but it takes over and tries to control the Self; to make everything about you. It is why instead of feeling emotions you take ownership of emotions. So instead of ‘I feel sad,’ or ‘I feel happy,’ you say ‘I am sad,’ or ‘I am happy.’ Even when you are unwell, instead of ‘I feel sick,’ you say ‘I am sick.’

The body is separate from the soul. The body is the wrapper. The container that houses the Godself – the Soul; your inner guidance system. But it is the body we identify with more instead of the soul.

The pure Divine light within each of you. It is this that is the root of all. You are not the collection of your experiences, but this is what you believe.


You believe you are shaped by what happens to you in your physical life. That it is this that is responsible for you being you. This is true, but it doesn’t need to be. You can in fact free yourself from the shackles of your own experiences by watching yourself, but asking questions of your behavior, by being aware of your thoughts, actions and choices.

Being aware of your thoughts is like learning to drive. At first it takes a lot of conscious effort, every thought must be examined, every action scrutinized.

Why did I say that?

Why did she get under my skin?

Why does what he say affect me so much?

When we start to examine our thoughts, we can usually trace them back to experiences of our lives; our youth, our past that has subconsciously embed itself into our belief system about who we are. David Keil calls this Convergent Histories. Awareness is that first step to freedom and reclaiming ourselves to be more compassionate and kind to ourselves first and therefore the world.

These constant questions of self; this self-study helps us to realize that what we criticize in others is present within ourselves. And that people in our lives are there to be mirrors for us.

If someone is misbehaving toward you, ask yourself what is it that is causing them to do this toward me? What am I doing to bring this on?

You will find that 100% of the time you are also playing a role in this person’s behavior toward you. This awareness of self is brutally honest, but it is what is needed to let go of age-old belief systems that don’t serve you.

And much like learning to drive a car, what at first requires so much focused effort to remember all the steps, after a while becomes second nature, and you do it more or less automatically. This self-reflection helps you grow your self-confidence and self-worth as you identify more with the Divine instead of with the body. You realize just how beautiful you are, just how perfect you are, and just how you are made to be a reflection of God’s perfection.

If people around us are our mirrors, then God made us to be His mirror.


But then, the ego or self takes over and we have moved so far away from our Divine reflection that we can’t see what is within us. It is this unwrapping, unpacking, releasing awareness that will help to move back to be our God-like selves; for us to identify more with that, rather than the sum total of our human experiences.

Because we are spiritual beings having human experiences and not human beings trying to be spiritual.

We ARE spiritual.

We simply have to find our way back to that. To remember our destiny and Godself within.

It is from this space that life becomes worth living and that everything you could never dream starts to show itself into your life.

This is where the bliss, joy and magic of life live.

This is the light – the Divine light at the end of the tunnel.

This is the only thing worth living for.

This is the life as you want to live with all your hopes, dreams and desires.

This is the magnificent perfection of God’s creation (YOU) come alive.

Published by Niki Chopra Richardson

TéO is my name for God. But it is also interchangeable with my my guardian angels who send me messages, answer my questions and often take over my writing. This explains italics, pull quotes, headers and tense person changes. I’ve attempted to differentiate Their thoughts and words from mine. Learning to Let Go and Let Go(d). Trusting Surrender.

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