I've been having a few unwelcome feelings pursuant to my daughter's so far ill fated effort to contact my high school (and college) girl friend, this naturally led me to start thinking about the soul and the ego.
When my girl friend parted from me i felt very empty and i sort of held her responsible for that emptyness. I won't go into how immature that was on so many ways. But I did do what for me was an unusually large amount of dating which eventually resulted in a marriage that never should have happened.
But what was (and is) that emptiness? Where is it, why is it, and what, if anything,, should be done about it? The emptyness may reside in the "soul." in the "body," in the "Self," or "somewhere else." Sometimes we seem to conflate "soul" and "self". If we try to surrunder our "selves" to the divine force and ask It to fill our emptiness, what is we think we are asking for?
Hinduism with its advaita ("not two") philosophy deals more easily with this issue. We are not the social and psychological "selves" which we have constructed for ourselves or allowed other people to create for us. We are one with the divine force although we are mostly forgetful or unwre of this. Lately, a small group has been looking at sermons and "instructions" of Meister Eckhrdt. I am finding him much more clear than modern attempts to explain him to us. He sees our emptiness as a gift
Thanks to horror novelist Dean Koontz, i have become aware of perceptions of "self" and "soul" in one of the Afro=Caribbean cults of Haiti. The human soul is bipolar. The Big Good Angel
(soul) is the "breath" of the divine infused into us at creation. At our deaths this "Angel" is reunited (but it was never disunited) with the divine essence of the universe. The "Little Good Angel" (self) is corruptable, and if we are not careful, it can be taken over by demonic or human sources of evil. We could end up as Zombies or worse. This effort by an African people to make sense of life in a modern world seems clearer than our efforts to psychologize medieval neoplatonic Christianity. Read Eckhart yourself before you read any modern books about him. I especially recommend his sermon entitled (i think) "On Spiritual Poverty". Note that spiritual poverty is a good to be sought rather than a problem to be avoided.
Finally, i came upon a poem by David White which contained these lines.
Hold to the truth you make
every day with your own body,
don't turn your face away.
Hold to your own truth
at the center of the image
you were born with.
Poetry Chaikhana | Sacred Poetry from Around the World
The problem is that, at my low level of spiritual development. "my own truth" cannot be "at the center of the image i was born with." Isn't that my "buddha nature? And how much of "my own truth" is a construct of my ego?
Well, that was a lot more confusing than intended. Sorry