As you live your life and determine your course of action daily, have you ever wondered how you can differentiate between the voice of your “ego” from that of “spirit”? It’s a bit like the old cartoons, where the main character would have a little devil on one shoulder whispering to him and a little angel on the other shoulder.

It is often with critical choices that we become entangled in the debate between different “voices” in our heads, which urge to do different things. How do you know when you are guided by your Spirit/Higher Self (HS) or your ego (LS)? (So that there is no confusion with Freud’s psychological “ego” construct, I will refer to the ego as the LS instead.)

The Higher Self (HS) is that eternal part of us that is in deep connection with Source energy; the HS does not incarnate in physical reality, but always remains in the spirit world. This “higher version” of ourselves is always available for guidance, and will attempt to communicate and help us through dreams, synchronicities, and most importantly, our intuition.

It is also crucial to understand the LS and give it its rightful place in our development. As humans, we go through various cycles throughout our lives.

When we are born, we are pure divine essence, very close to the spirit world we all come from. This is why animals and most people love being around babies.

They exude that Light from Source and they are completely natural, innocent, spontaneous and unselfconscious. We all incarnate with the inner knowledge that everything is ONE.

Fundamentally, at the energetic level there is no separation, as everything and everyone is just a reflection of Source energy.

In other words, “you” are just another “me”; each of us being a wave in the oceanic totality of existence.

“Your Higher Self is the immutable and divine part of you, which exists in the Eternal Now. If you tune into its messages, it will guide you through intuition and synchronicities to a more peaceful and fulfilled life.”

– Ileana Rontea
Loving Messages From Source

The Myth Of Disconnection

“Our separation from each other is an optical illusion.” – Albert Einstein

As the baby begins to grow and learn from everything her senses tell her, she begins to believe that she is somehow separate; she comes to realize that her mother is not always there because she is somehow “different” and can exist in another location.

A distinctive sense of “self” begins to form and by around the age of 2, the tiny being has begun to evolve her LS, to explore her environment and to assert her own personality; this phase is well known to parents as “the terrible twos”.

The LS is born to allow this tiny human to survive in the 3-D reality. It is essential because it is what keeps the growing toddler safe. Its main concern is with emotional and physical survival of its human persona.

It is a primal force that is born out of the necessity of living in physical reality, where love and connection with The All is not of primary concern. It is the energy of individuation that propels each of us forward on our own journey so that we can become who we need to grow into.

As we begin to mature, we develop our interests, our own views, values and personalities. The voice of Source is muted further and further as the young child begins to explore what the physical world has to offer.

Parents and society also discourage children who can still hear Source/HS/Spirit Guides, from viewing these “imaginary friends” as anything other than fantasy. Therefore, most of us become socialized to believe that only our material reality exists and that this is the only place we need to concern ourselves with.

We are also subconsciously programmed to believe that we ARE separate, that the world is a place of pain and we need to protect ourselves. The LS becomes stronger, and our connection to Source and HS diminishes, although it never completely disappears.

We then get busy with friends, school, finding a partner, buying a house, a career, children, travel, hobbies, and other elements of our lives on this planet. These are the decades of expansion in the 3-D, when we mostly operate from our LS (and our lower chakras) and are concerned with material reality, financial security, romantic love, satisfying our senses, raising a family, etc.

The Urge To Self-Evolve

Depending on how we are wired, at some point we begin to feel there is something more, there is an inner gnawing, there is a quiet dissatisfaction with what we have done, regardless of how outwardly successful we appear. This impulse becomes a potent force awakening us to the process of self-evolution from a spiritual perspective.

This process might begin as early as the 4th decade of a woman’s life, while for others it’s later.

At this point, many begin to seek meditation, reiki, study spirituality, read metaphysical books, listen to channelings and embark on the process of reconnecting to the HS (perhaps without clearly knowing this is what they are doing, but nevertheless they are on that course).

Part of this journey also entails “inner/child work” or “shadow work”. Usually done with a therapist, psychologist, energy worker, or some guide who is familiar with this territory of the inner self, this is deep work done on issues we all have because we are all raised in a way that is more or less, dysfunctional.

The list below will give some idea of what could be worked on, but it is not exhaustive:

* recovering from abuse (either as a child and/or as an adult)
* trauma of any kind
* addictions or other unhealthy coping habits
* co-dependent relationships
* abandonment issues
* phobias or obsessions
* lack of self-love/
* passive-aggressive behaviors
* self-absorption/requiring constant attention/ validation from others


* feelings of alienation and not fitting in
* recurrent bouts of depression
* self-victimization
* inability to deal with any conflict in a constructive manner
* continual denial, repression and avoidance of a harmful situation
* extreme self-criticism and perfectionist tendencies
* chronic anxiety
* unresolved grief/anger/ fear/self-loathing, etc.


“The coping mechanisms we developed as children often do not serve us as adults. Understanding these primal survival strategies with compassion for ourselves, allows us to begin the healing process and replace these unconscious harmful patterns with those we choose, and which will be more beneficial for our future.”

– Ileana Rontea

As we work through the ideas/ feelings/ beliefs that hold us back, we begin to understand that the LS is running our lives most of the time.

From personal experience, I can attest to how important it is for everyone to embark on this kind of inner work, either alone, but preferably with a trusted guide/therapist.

Until we become self-aware and understand how we need to grow and overcome these issues, we will remain prisoner to them (and to the LS) and it will be very difficult to hear the HS.

The LS was never meant to run our lives.  It is an auxiliary program which adopts a number of defence mechanisms in order to allow us as children to survive.

The mechanisms may have worked at the time when we were young and helpless, but become deeply inappropriate as we grow into adulthood.

This is part of the inner work we do – finding these destructive and ingrained ways of responding to the world, and replacing them with better and more effective behaviours.

We can then begin to more clearly tune into the voice of the HS. While we live from the LS, we are on automatic pilot and react without thought, or pause to whatever external stimulus comes our way.

The LS is very reactive and afraid, always terrified of losing control. This is why it doesn’t like change of any kind, but strives for the status quo, by feeding us with fear.

It is fear that stops us from evolving and moving forward; it is good to remember that change is the only constant instead of always being in fear of it.

How Do You Know Who Is Speaking To You?

Many spiritual people mistakenly try to destroy the LS (ego) in favour of living in their HS at all times, but this is not advisable and can lead to mental health issues. The more useful aim is to become aware of when the LS is directing and when the HS is guiding.

Generally, the Lower Self hijacks us in a shrill, anxious, angry or authoritative voice. Its messages are about contraction, fear, cowardice, worry, stress, lack, scarcity, greed, narcissism, rage, comparison to others, jealousy, envy, ignorance, blame, shame, guilt, judgment, harshness, disempowerment, denial of what is, repression superiority/dominance, self-righteousness, narrow mindedness, martyrdom, prejudice, greed, avarice, arrogance, addiction, obsession, over-thinking, doing what is expedient, self-victimization, playing it safe/small, winner/loser mentality, and other emotions/beliefs that create the illusion of division and “us versus them” kind of thinking.

The Higher Self offers a different perspective because it is connected to All That Is, at all times. The guidance that it sends through various means, is normally gentle and encourages thinking and behaviour based on growth/expansion, creativity, exploration, possibilities, curiosity, understanding, goodwill, balance, acceptance of others, forgiveness, authenticity, openness, gratitude, awe, serenity, compassion, inner strength, empathy, collaboration, kindness, empowerment, freedom, benevolence, co-creation with Spirit, courage, peace, joy, humanitarian efforts, and stepping out of the comfort zone. It is grounded in self-awareness, inner knowledge and love.

The HS also allows us to imagine life beyond our 3-D reality, and connects us to the possibilities inherent in that awareness. Most importantly, HS seeks connection, unity and harmony in our dealings with our inner most selves and others.

The HS reminds us of the ultimate reality that we are ONE. Whenever it urges us to do anything, the intent is ultimately “service to others”, which is really “service-to-self-through-others”. When we help others, we help ourselves because we are all inter-connected.

Once we have integrated the LS, we learn how to balance giving to others with self-love and self-compassion. This means that we do not become self-destructive or ignore our own needs and well-being.

Ideally, the HS leads, but the LS is integrated in such a way that we know when we are endangering ourselves in any situation or relationship. This is the ultimate goal of our inner work and it is truly liberating!

How can you tune into the HS’ guidance more?

I suggest you keep a dream journal and also notice synchronicities that may appear when you are looking for answers.

For example, if a particular phrase, word, image, name, place, person, book, idea, or number keeps showing up, these are all hints that the HS is communicating with you.

At all times, listen to your intuition, as it is your internal guidance system. You will also feel more peace of mind and tranquility when listening to the HS’ messages.

Embracing the HS in an intentional manner will truly change your life as you relax more into the natural flow of the universe and experience a new and more peaceful way of being.

“A human being experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” – Albert Einstein