Real Self vs True Self: What’s the Difference?

In our quest to wake up, our mission is to travel the surprisingly long distance from our ego to our True Self. Along the way, we will need to overcome a significant list of hurdles that are part of our Real Self. Wait, aren’t these two things—our True Self and our Real Self—the same thing? No, and it’s vitally important we understand the difference. For while both are real, only one is in truth.

Real self vs true self

So what it does it mean to be real? For starters, if something is real that means it’s highly charged. So both our Higher Self and our Lower Self—both of which are energized by our life force—can be considered real. The former works in a positive direction, whereas the latter has gotten distorted along the way so that it temporarily operates in a negative manner.

Both our Higher Self and our Lower Self can be considered real.

Since our Higher Self works in alignment with the flow of the universe, it’s known for things like harmony, peace, connection, compassion, forgiveness, willingness, wisdom and courage. This is the light-filled part of us that’s in truth, so it doesn’t need to shout. It quietly sits there at the center of our being, patiently waiting for us to wake up and listen to it.

Our Lower Self, by contrast, is the part of us working in opposition to the light. Its signature moves are resistance, rebellion, destruction, separation, cruelty, spite and hate. The thing underpinning each of these negative directives is an untruth that’s gotten lodged in our unconscious. Since the untruth is separated from our awareness, we don’t see the mistaken conclusion we are harboring about life. As such, unless we wake up and start to ferret out our hidden misunderstandings, we don’t stand a chance of dismantling them and returning our Lower Self energies to their original divine form.

Instead, what people tend to do is double down on their hate-fueled attitudes and behaviors. After all, we get a rush from all the twisted energy that fills us up and propels us when we act from our Lower Self. Our inner dishonesty then goes unchecked, making it extra hard to sift the truth from untruth outside ourselves. In fact, since untruth is what’s now driving us, we line up behind untruth in the world and use it to crank us up even higher.

We get a rush from all the twisted energy that fills us up and propels us when we act from our Lower Self.

Of course, we may have figured out by now that people don’t respond well to those who behave in wicked ways. So out comes our Mask Self featuring our favorite strategies for covering up our Lower Self while still attempting to overcome others and get our way. Since this part of us is made up of manipulation and control, it’s not actually the part of us that holds the juice. Rather, our Lower Self hires our Mask Self to do its dirty work—which is basically to carry stink waves out into the world.

Meanwhile, our Higher Self is laying low, waiting for our ego to wake up, find it and start taking direction from this far more lovely and productive part of ourselves. The kicker is that the ego can’t just let go and hope to swing elegantly from running the show remotely to living from our inner divine True Self. For as long as there is a swamp of destructive intentions and wrong thinking in the way, it can’t actually locate and live from the rich nougat center of our soul.

The ego can’t just let go and hope to swing elegantly from running the show remotely to living from our inner divine True Self.

At one point in time in our history, we each actively constructed inner walls, hoping we could armor ourselves and thereby seal out feelings of pain. Now these very walls, instead of keeping us safe, are the obstacles blocking us out of our true inner home. Worse, they are what prevent our ego from tapping into our inner storehouse of truth.

Because our ego, while working to keep us walking straight in the world, does not possess the truth detector needed to tell us when we’re being fed a pack of lies. That’s what only the Higher Self can do. For the Higher Self rests in truth and hence knows truth when it hears it. By contrast, the ego lacks such a truth-telling compass and can therefore lose its way quite easily.

Our work is to wake up and start doing the necessary work of clearing away our inner obstacles. We must find our mistaken beliefs, reorient our thinking, release our old pent-up feelings of unfelt pain, and then learn to let go from our ego. We must also reroute our negative intentions into a willingness to give our best.

If we do this, we will find our way through all parts of our Real Self and into the truth of our being. Then and only then will we be able to live from our True Self, finding ourselves at peace within and with the world.

–Jill Loree

Phoenesse: Find Your True You

Learn more about waking up in After the Ego: Insights from the Pathwork Guide on How to Wake Up | Now on Amazon

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