As an extension of my prior post, Forget Self Esteem, I want to talk more about soul freedom. In the book The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, he speaks to how we tend to live in a dream-like spell. Part of this spell consists of the individual cultural spells we all inherit. Cultural spells are external expectations about how you should be and how you should live. Gender stereotypes, beauty standards, lifestyle biases, recipes for “success” are all cultural spells. They are a perpetuated consensus about how the world is, how reality is, and how we should be.
But cultural spells are created by the participants in the spells; they are not universal laws; they do not stand the tests of time or cross-cultural comparison; they are MADE UP. And if we can make them up we can make up something different. Better yet, we can dismiss them entirely.
How? By not playing the game. By making choices as much as possible from a place of internal alignment and inspiration — the creation of your own unique Self in the image it loves. If you love makeup, wear makeup. If you love short hair, have short hair. If you want to write, write. If you want to travel, travel. If you want to be a CEO, be a CEO. Only you know what the true expression of your soul is, what makes you come alive, what makes your soul sing.
I apply the phrase “It can’t be about that” to just about any part of the cultural spell that I have an unhealthy attachment to. It can’t be about having money or not having money. It can’t be about being thinner or gaining weight. It can’t be about having a partner or not having a partner. Attachment to any of those things curtails my freedom. What I replace it with is a commitment to serve and express from a place of soulfulness, to be loving and present to myself and the world to the best of my ability. I make sure that I don’t believe that my life needs anything specific. I make sure I don’t believe that my life is any less because I don’t have some external thing. It is easy to get caught in those mental traps: “If I had this, then I would be happy.” But that is a prison of limitation that serves no purpose and is simply not true.
We can opt out of the cultural spells. We can dream different dreams, dreams that originate from and nourish our souls. When we disempower our attachments to the cultural spells we make room for our soul’s dream to naturally express itself in the world. When we do, when the dream of our world originates from within, we are in those moments free.