The difference between a soul level and Ground awakening seems subtle from within the soul level awakening, but obvious and significant from within the Ground awakening.
In both, there is a clear recognition that all is God/awareness. Ephemeral. Insubstantial. Awareness itself.
Within soul level awakening, there is still a vague sense of an “I” that is “one with” God/existence, sees that all is awakeness, and also that there is no “I” there. There is still an identification within form here, and it is as if content of awareness awakens to itself as one.
And within Ground awakening, that “I” falls away. The sense of center-periphery falls out. The Ground of all awakens to itself.
It is a great help to have some familiarity with both of these forms of awakenings since the difference becomes more clear. For me, it seems that the initial awakening had both, then faded into a soul level awakening, and then a transient Ground level awakening following that, which is now more of a soul level awakening again. And in the process, it has all gone from appearing extraordinary to very unremarkable.
Yet, within a soul level awakening, there is still a slight identification with content of awareness. Content of awareness is awake to itself as one, yet there is a slight sense of an “I” within that content which is “one with existence”. It is next door to Ground awakening, and – from my experience – it is very possible to see the Ground awakening – not only as a possibility but also here now, yet the shift into it has not quite happened yet. There is a vague sense of an “I” that sees that all is awareness, and that there is no “I” and no center.
When that shift into Ground awakening happens, it is that which content of awareness happens within, to and as which awakens to itself. Any sense of an “I” and a center falls away. There is only the Ground awake to itself, and anything happening as Ground itself.
In my very limited experience, at the soul level awakening the sense of inside-outside falls away, but there is still a slight sense of center-periphery. And this one falls away within Ground awakening. (Right now, there is more of a soul level awakening. Everything is recognized as awareness itself. But there is a slight sense of center-periphery, and also getting caught in stories now and then. Which is good. It helps me explore that terrain more.)
- soul level: content of awareness awake to itself as one, an “I” that is “one with” existence. (Next door to Ground awakening.)
- Ground: that which content of awareness happens within, to and as. (The identification at soul level awakening becomes very obvious.)