Mastery is usually defined as be highly skilled or proficient in one or more areas of life. Self-Mastery takes this to its highest level. To be the Master of your own Self is to fully understand who you really are. It is a discovery of the Guru within, the inner guiding Light. It means taking full responsibility for your own life. Mastery in this sense doesn’t mean to control in a negative way; it’s the realization that you are the Universe, and that you and everything around you flows harmoniously together in the magnificent dance of your own creation.
The true Yogi is a master of everything in his or her life, so Self-Mastery becomes the foundation for Spiritual Mastery. The first step is to become conscious of who you are and then you can master the gifts and talents that you have. Like your spiritual practice, the path of Self-Mastery unfolds throughout your life. It is an internal and self-directed journey, whose progress only you can determine.
The key to mastery in anything is practice; the more you practice, the more proficient you become. The term “spiritual practice” doesn’t only denote what you do but also implies the necessity of regularity. Without practice and dedication, there can be no mastery. As everything is a projection of the Self, you could practice and become a master of anything. By becoming a master of all the different areas of life, you would ultimately gain Self-Mastery. This, however, would be a long process. The shortcut is to go directly for the Self. By becoming a master of that which controls everything, you spontaneously become a master of everything. Maharishi Mahesh Yogi used to say, “Capture the fort and all the territory will be yours”. This is the victory of Self-Mastery.
Self-Mastery also requires patience, truthfulness, purity, impeccability, and faith. The patience to accept what is and to know when to allow things to unfold in their own time. To be true not only in your words and actions but to be honest with yourself. To be pure in your lifestyle through a healthy diet, regular exercise, and good sleep. To be the best you can in all you do, with humility and respect. To have faith in the path you have chosen, faith in your teachers and faith in your ability to be masterful.
Let’s look at the steps you can take to unlock the full potential of your Self-Mastery.
Your thoughts are constantly taking you into the future or the past so, consequently, this is probably where you spend most of your life. To be aware is to be present—to live in this moment, the NOW. To be aware is to always keep coming back to what is happening NOW. The NOW is where you connect with your Higher Self, with your Essence. Being aware is to witness your thoughts, emotions, actions, and the world with non-attachment.
Meditation is the direct route which takes you into Pure Awareness in the silent spaces between your thoughts. However, right now, be aware of your breath flowing in and out. Be aware of any sensations in your body, be aware of your clothes touching your body. Be aware of the sounds around you, the sounds within you. Be aware of your thoughts and any emotions, effortlessly witnessing them coming and going. Now and any time during the day—when you’re eating, walking, working, doing anything—pause and ask yourself, “Who is listening? Who is watching? Who is smelling, tasting, feeling?” There’s a presence, a witness. This is your Higher Self. This is being aware.
Everything in life before Self-Mastery is a choice. Your choices create the life you live. When you allow the ego to control your choices, you live in lower vibrations. When you choose forgiveness, compassion, and Truth, you move into your Mastery.
To discern is to choose wisely. First, you need to be aware that there are choices and then to choose consciously—to become the conscious choice-maker. The subtlest level of discernment is to ask the heart for guidance so your choices come from love and not fear. When you ask, “What would my Higher Self do?”, you will always be true to yourself. When you choose Light over darkness, the whole universe opens to support you.
This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t use your commonsense, but always remember that first impulse from the heart when making the final decision.
Now you are aware, start becoming aware of your choices. Take one thing in your life that brings you discomfort and yet you keep doing it out of habit. Sit quietly, close your eyes, bring your awareness into your heart center, and ask, “What do I need to change?” Then just listen. Don’t analyze, or judge, just listen to the voice of your heart.
Once you have made your conscious choice, you need to have the courage to act on it. The ego is always waiting to distract you, and the closer you approach Self-Mastery, the more powerful the distractions become.
To be focused on the path of Self-Mastery requires you to be one-pointed without being rigid. It requires you to stay alert, unemotional, and mature. To be firm without oppression, to be resolved without judgment, to be strong with humility. It requires you to practice silence and stillness so your inner wisdom can reveal itself. Surrender to the Divine so when things don’t seem to be going your way, you realize there’s an even greater opportunity waiting for you. Self-Mastery also requires you to be courageous, to step out from the crowd and know that there’s no turning back.
Take your conscious choice and make a commitment to it, while still remaining unattached to its outcome. Be aware of the distractions, witness them, and let them go. Stay focused but flexible. Look for the clues that will be sent to help you. Transmute any difficulties into opportunities. Trust your inner wisdom.
When you realize your Self-Mastery, you radiate your Light and Divinity for all to enjoy. There is no need for choice in the regular sense because all your actions are spontaneously in alignment with Natural Law. You can neither harm or be harmed. You can still enjoy the limited, localized value of the senses, while at the same time roaming free in the non-local Supreme value, “In the world but not of it.” Happiness becomes bliss, separation becomes wholeness, your feminine and masculine qualities merge. You realize your Oneness. Fully awake in the I Am Presence, Pure Consciousness, Truth, Love. Commanders of the Light, fulfilling the promise of your Destiny.
Imagine what it will be like to have no boundaries or limitations, to be free, and for all your actions to be spontaneously correct and all desires spontaneously fulfilled. Imagine Self-Mastery, it’s here waiting for you right now.
Embark on the path to self-mastery with Deepak Chopra and Roger Gabriel in our Primordial Sound Meditation Online Course. Learn More.