Soul as the Origin of Consciousness
The soul has its own music that can only be hinted at through words. I am not speaking of religious epiphanies, though they are very real. In most peopleís lives the growth of consciousness doesnít move by epiphany. Someone might have a breakthrough or a turning point that feels as if he or she were directly touched by spirit. But for the most part consciousness grows and deepens by degrees.
What science canít explain, it doesnít see. This includes beauty, devotion, faith, inspiration, nobility, compassion, empathy, fate, intuition, and love itself. Are we really claiming these as fictions or illusions? In fact, they make life worth living.
I venture to argue that the view Iíve just outlined–that the soul is the origin of consciousness–appears in every spiritual tradition. The fact that it is distorted in popular religion and dismissed by science is a matter of politics, not a matter of proof. Religious thinkers are forced to pretend that their area of ignorance is trivial, and so must the scientific side.
Yet the areas of ignorance are quite large on both sides. Religious people refuse to look deeply into consciousness for fear that somebody will convince them that all their faith in unseen things is superstition, or worse. The scientific side refuses to admit their ignorance about the existence of a non-material reality for fear that they will be led into irrational, wooly thinking.
The way of peace aims for the very heart of reality. No one is entitled to a fixed opinion about the outcome, because each journey is unique. Everything is shaped to who you are. Yet the journey is also universal.
Adapted from: Peace is the Way, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2005).