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- Exploring Religious Options
I Wonder-What Does a Spiritual Person Look Like?
What are your beliefs?
Have you ever wondered what it means to be a spiritual person? I mean in everyday life…not as some guru in satsang, or the Pope sitting in the Vatican, or a Buddhist monk praying in a temple…
Many of us are born into families who hand their religious beliefs and practices down to us. We may attend church, a synagogue or temple; and we may also attend a parochial school in which these beliefs are shared daily.
Some of us are born into families with no formal religious teachings. We grow up in a scientific environment where there is no room for imaginary powers, only the Universe and its reality to focus on. These agnostic or atheistic beliefs grasp us early in our development.
Growing up Catholic I often wondered, as a child and adolescent, what my relationship was with God and Jesus; if my love for God would eventually lead me to a path of devotion, like the nuns that taught weekly Catechism; or if He would lead me to a different career of service to others.
The Beauty of Simple Things
An Unrivaled Intimacy
I was a very curious and observant child. My mother told me stories of how I would stand quietly and unobtrusively watching what was happening-not speaking, but fully attentive. I believe I still have these qualities. I love to observe the world around me and fully engage in it. My curiosity is piqued when I sense that there is a presence nearby and I can feel the connection with that omniscient power.
It is this intimate contact that allows me to be aware of the loving benevolence which I know as God. I am sure it is very different for each of us, but I would like to share with you that it is the most loving, supportive relationship I have experienced. When I am quiet, and my mind is not dominating my attention with distracting chatter, I am aware of the dynamic energy that is warm, flowing and fully present.
It brings to my work creativity. It brings to my ‘self’ confidence. It fills my heart with love, openness and joy. When I experience the vast expansiveness of this beauty, I am grateful beyond words. I cannot ignore it as if it is not real. It is more real than the faltering ego’s attempts to bolster it up with images of what it thinks it is to be human.
The World is a Frightening Place
Sometimes, in the business of everyday living-the noise, the traffic jams, the stress of job, home, illness, it would be easy to get distracted from this knowing-of-spirit. However, as we turn our attention away from the flame of spirit, our suffering increases.
How lonely and afraid we are travelling through life without a steadfast friend; pretending to be grown up and feeling like scared little children. There is so much sickness in the world because we have forgotten that we are love.
I have grown to trust this Presence. It wasn’t always that way. I struggled to believe that there could be such a thing as unconditional love; that there is a Being that is this unconditional love and that I am that as well. I did not believe; I tested and controlled; I created conflict for myself daily when I resisted and did not surrender to what was enfolding me should I allow for it.
But, what I discovered along the way of stumbling, falling, and hitting the bumps along the road, is that I can depend on this love to always be there, to never falter, and to want only the best for me each and every time.
That is a staggering realization; an amazing experience and fact of life. We only have to stop our distraction from what we already know, but have forgotten, to experience the peace and harmony of life. Yet, it appears to be a best kept secret.
And then, there is Love...
When it finally occurred to me that no matter how much I tried, this love was not going to go away, it was not going to give up on me, it would never turn its back because I did something that my mind perceived as unworthy, it was a mind-boggling thought. How could ordinary me deserve so much love and constant attention? How can any of us mere mortals be worthy of this? But, the truth, as I came to know, is that we do deserve and we are worthy just because…just because we are who we are-manifestations of the Divine Love.
Mine has been an incredible journey away from and back to the source of all that is. We each have our own story and our own journey to discover our individual relationships with the spirit that energizes our human bodies. In our daily living we practice being more of who we are as Divine Beings, or more of who we are as lost children. The choice is ours.
As for me, I revel in the intimate knowing of Divine Self; I am humbled by the grace that has touched my life; and I sing praise for the countless moments of ‘now’ that allow me to experience all that life has to offer and the peace that arises from that.
I wish you all pleasant travels on this road to nowhere and everywhere.