I was taught much by an African teacher who helped me undergo ritual initiation over a lengthy period, a time when I was working hard to reconstruct myself after shattering events in my life. One concept that has been with me strongly is the notion that each of us have a Twin Self. He explained that his people in Nigeria say that our Twin Self is an aspect of us that exists outside of the constraints and limitations that we experience in our incarnated life. He told me, “You should build an altar to your Twin Self.” I have always remembered this teaching but never actually built that altar until today.
The image I have in my head is of something like an umbilical cord – suggesting that my Twin Self is mother to the self I experience from day to day in time on Earth, and energy and consciousness flow to me through that cord to support growth and development during my stay here. The purpose for building an altar to that Self would be to strengthen the connection, open the flow, nourish the “blood” with conscious intention, enhance the capabilities of that Self’s entry into my worldly life by increasing awareness of what it does and can do if I align and cooperate with it.
Two dreams that I have had speak to me of this Twin Self. One took place during the time of my breakdown, and the other occurred just two nights ago. The first dream from the late 90’s I only remember dimly now but will investigate my dream journals from that period soon. In it, many of us were standing on the side of a very deep lake. In the dream I had a twin who had drowned in that lake. Big equipment was being used to excavate her. Finally she was located — and when she was lifted up it felt like an aspect of myself being resurrected. There was work to be done to revive her and repair the connection, but now that we had found her we could begin. At the time I felt the dream to be offering to me a sense of meaning and purpose in the painful difficulties of my life at the time. Shamans might call this a soul retrieval.
In the dream of two nights ago I saw two fields of vivid energy – a variety of golden colors made each of them up. On the left field there was a dense mass of that energy in the center of it, very dense. On the right was a similar constellation of energy, but without the density, made of lightness. They were connected to each other, reflections of each other maybe, and each of them were me. After I awakened thoughts about what my Nigerian teacher told me regarding the Twin Self began burning in my psyche. I sensed the dream was telling me to think more actively on this.
And so I built an altar. I found a picture (which I posted above) taken of me at age 20 in Kyoto, Japan, in front of the great Buddha statue there. It suggests the smaller me and the larger me. I put a little bouquet of recently found feathers, a flower, sacred objects, stones and crystals around it. And now I will pray. I hope to find my voice more solidly, connect with my writing muse, feel a sense of clear direction in my personal and professional life, help people and the planet regarding issues that I feel passionate about and trained in. Like strengthening the signal that brings in more information on our computers or cell phones, I feel guided now to empower the connection with this aspect of my Spirit that sees and knows.
A recent dream experience showed me great energies and powers that we swim in and can utilize as I was “out” of my body, moving around in what might be called the dreamtime. But as I was awakening from the dream I felt myself condensing and condensing into the density of matter in the waking life that we are living in this particular time/space continuum here on Earth. It felt hard to come back, like I might not even make it, and also sad, like so much of who we are is “forgotten” here.
I offer this to you in case it inspires you to reflect and maybe connect more solidly with your own Twin Self. I think this concept is similar to what is spoken of in religions as “soul”, or the Higher Self, or in Jungian psychology as the Self. We know of it. But somehow those terms have seemed a little more vague to me than this idea of the Twin Self that is me and who lives as me in other realms, even as I am finding my way through this realm.
Our human life needs helpful perspective for the dilemmas we find ourselves in – with the complexities of modern life, the largest human population ever to live together on our little Spaceship Earth, issues of global warming – and so much more. Maybe this concept can help enlarge our view.