Visions, Reason, Knowledge and Spiritual sight

Higher Self and Lower Self of Man

“There belongs to every human being a higher self and a lower self—a self or mind of the spirit which has been growing for ages, and a self of the body, which is but a thing of yesterday. The higher self is full of prompting idea, suggestion, and aspiration. This it receives of the supreme power. All this the lower or animal self regards as wild and visionary. The higher self argue possibilities … The lower self says we can only live and exist as men and women have lived and existed before us. The higher self craves freedom from the cumbrousness, the limitations … of the body. The lower self says that we are born to them. …
“You have, in a sense two minds—the mind of the body and the mind of the spirit.” ~Prentice Mulford

Higher and Lower Self

I had never read any of Prentice Mulford’s books until I found this one in a volume of Human Science Classics on Amazon Kindle. I was beginning to feel I had wasted my money on the book, for the first few classics in it, while possibly good for their purpose, were not spiritual or esoteric at all. Then I reached Mulford’s book “Thoughts are Things,” and found the quote above on the first page! I think it’s going to be a good read.

The idea of a higher and lower self is certainly not a new one. There is some disagreement about which is which. Some think the lower self is merely the body and the instinct, but the intellect is the higher self. Mr. Mulford has it correct.

Lower Self

The physical body is certainly part of the lower self. I’ve never heard of anyone disagreeing with that. But the mind of the lower self is more than just the most primitive parts of the brain where instinctive and automatic behavior occurs. That is the only brain found in simple animals like frogs and lizards. The higher brain functions found in more complex animals, and man, are also part of the lower self. That is because the lower mind cannot truly know and understand the spiritual. It can speculates about them as an interesting fantasy, but not much more. This brain-mind is very useful in the physical words, not useful in the spiritual realms. It can turn light waves coming into the eyes into images of the things around us. It can guide us through the material world with hearing, scent and touch as well. But it cannot go beyond the lower dimensions, so is part of the lower self. Continue reading “Higher Self and Lower Self of Man”

anchored by materialism

The Anchor of Materialism and the Lower Self

“In humanity, the lower is not supreme; it is an accompaniment; but neither does the better rule unfailingly; the lower element also has a footing, and Man, therefore, lives in part under sensation, for he has the organs of sensation, and in large part even by the merely vegetative principle, for the body grows and propagates; all the graded phases are in collaboration, but the entire form, man, takes rank by the dominant, and when the life-principle leaves the body it is what it is, what it most intently lived.
“This is why we must break away towards the High: we dare not keep ourselves set towards the sensuous principle, following the images of sense, or toward the merely vegetative, intent upon the gratifications of eating and procreation; our life must be pointed … toward God.” ~Plotinus

The Lower and the Higher

Plotinus is telling us that our lower self, our material self and the brain-mind that goes with it, is not supreme, but neither is the Higher Self. The Higher Self is supreme or it wouldn’t be “higher”, but Plotinus is saying that letting the Higher Self rule us is not an automatic thing. We have to work at awakening that higher self, and then getting the lower self to surrender control to it. It doesn’t just happen.

People who play the lottery are fond of telling those who don’t that you can’t win if you don’t play. Likewise, we are told that when our ship comes in, we need to board it without hesitation as we not get a second or third chance. The same idea applies to spiritual growth. Continue reading “The Anchor of Materialism and the Lower Self”