The Higher Self is a term associated with various belief systems and is usually associated with the eternal, and intelligent consciousness. The term has been popularized in the New Age and Neopagan movements.
Many people never realize they have a spiritual dimension. The noise and activity of the physical world with its sight, touch, sound, and sensations numbs us to the finer, spiritual reality.
The truth is that we are not human beings having a spiritual experience, but that we are spiritual beings having a human experience. As you reflect back on your life you realize that ‘you’ have never really changed even though your appearance, your personality and almost every physical aspect of yourself changed. Your body is merely a ‘vehicle’ through which you explore the physical world.
Each individual is one of the many incarnations that Source, or higher self, expresses to experience physical existence. When an individual dies, the energy stream still remains in the astral and etherics realms, where it continues to build a portfolio of experiences.
Ultimately the energy stream is completely absorbed back into the Higher Self. At which point the individual and its other incarnations are merged back with the Higher Self, the "real" you.