How is one not broken open listening to some version of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah? Halle means praise, and jah, as the Rasta’s confirm, is God. Praise God!
The emotions aroused in listening to Hallelujah are transcendent bliss and love. These emotions, as reflected in Cohen’s lyrics (which evolved over many years), are refined from hungry sexuality and sensuality to the most expansive level of sublime spiritual union at a soul level.
The soul is the subtle dimension of a human being, which animates the physical body. The soul is composed of elemental emotional substance, as well as mental substance. Emotions are the soul’s passionately magnetic agents of desire that attract to it the substance and body of the human being we become.
The life we enter is constructed to fulfill our High Self’s karmic quest. That which must be fulfilled is the mission of the soul’s desire body, replete with its active body of elemental emotions. Part of that karmic mission is to refine its raw emotional substance to the pure innocence of mature love in human endeavors, attachments and relationships throughout life.
At the primal level of physical life, emotions are the desires that serve our instinctual imperatives to eat, protect and reproduce. Refined through the vicissitudes of human life, emotions draw us into spiritual communion with our source in infinity.
The active elemental energies present in human emotion are latent elemental forces in all of nature. Fire, for instance, is a consuming elemental of nature that enacts necessary change, as old life is cleared to prepare the ground for new. Human beings have refined nature’s fire to produce warmth and edible food.
Within the human soul the latent elemental of fire is passion, a highly charged emotion that at a base level can lead to violence or simply gruff carnal union. At a more refined level, passion can motivate a great technological advance, such as AI (artificial intelligence), a revolution currently descending upon us.
Actually, our technological advances, while fueled by elemental passion, are largely accomplished through the rational thinking of the mind, also housed in the human soul, in the mental body.
Our ability to reason is quite advanced, hence we are readily capable of sussing out the subtle elemental properties of the elements in nature, then recombining them to our seemingly unlimited material advantage.
Unfortunately, the ego’s refinement of elemental emotions has not kept pace with its refinement of its mental acuity. Thus greed and dominance have infused our technological advance with irresponsible intent.
The Hindu technology of yoga offers a clear path for the maturation of elemental emotions through the intentional rising of kundalini energy along the progressive energy centers, called chakras, that connect the soul body to the physical body.
Kundalini is the ultimate elemental life force energy that rises from the base of the spine, the root of our stability, through our sexual core to the solar plexus, the center of ego power.
As we align with the guidance of our Higher Self, at the heart center, our ability to speak our deepest truth opens at the throat, then travels to our intuitive center at the third eye. The crowning achievement of spiritual refinement is enlightenment and deep empathy at the seventh chakra, at the top of the head.
Oftentimes, we might notice our throat tighten if we have an intense emotion and want to speak. Energetically we are experiencing an unrefined elemental emotion, too dense for transmission through the higher chakra channels.
In this case, the emotion might require further processing at a physical level, perhaps through belly screaming at the level of the solar plexus before it can move upward to the compassion center at the heart and then be calmly communicated through the larynx.
A psychological approach to elemental maturity involves similar dynamics at different centers of the soul. The subconscious mind is the base energy center of the soul that has the raw materials, desires and knowhow to manifest anything. The subconscious does not think, it follows orders via suggestions.
The ego, at the mental body center of the soul, has the power of consciousness and free will. The ego is the main character in a human life, orphaned by, yet on its assigned mission from, its High Self.
The ego must struggle to develop confidence and rise above its narcissistic infatuation with power. The ego’s charge, the hero’s journey, is to refine the desire body’s elemental emotions into love, its highest possible development.
The supra-conscious center of the soul houses the High Self, which supports the ego through its suffering journey of human life to transform its karmic elemental roots into the heights of spiritual purity and transcendental love.
Human life unfolds as a growing interaction between these tripartite centers of the soul—the subconscious, the ego, and the supra-conscious—as ego gradually wakes up and moves toward greater acquiescence to the mission of its High Self in this life. And with that accomplishment we truly can sing Hallelujah!