MY SPIRITUAL PATH
So many of us struggle with spirituality. We tend to shy away from the conversation and downplay our own beliefs out of fear of offending one another. Most of our society has renounced religion altogether and has taken a more modern approach to morality that relies heavily on philosophy. While this 21st Century outlook may be pleasing to some I find it to be a bit lacking. Why try and explain away the mystery and over-intellectualize when we can dance in it?
Don’t get me wrong, this isn’t an easy lesson to learn and it’s one I still struggle with today. In fact, even after months of spiritual guidance from a brilliant, and very patient, Anglican Priest named Pam I still catch myself trying to intellectualize and gift wrap my problems with cute little rational bows.
A good therapist never reveals a problem, no matter how painstakingly obvious it may be to everyone else, until the patient is ready to accept the truth. It’s common for us to go through bouts of denial and want to whisk away problems. I am no different. In short, I had literally built walls around my heart and refused to feel. At all.
Years of trauma and a few self inflicted failures had taken me to a point where I simply compartmentalized anything I wasn’t emotionally capable of processing. Essentially, I set all the issues in boxes and stored them in the darkest corners of my mind. Of course, I’d unpack them and use them to explain away why I was doing A-B or C rather than allowing my heart to heal. The problem with this being I was hindering myself from awakening to the deeper truths God was trying to teach me.
It’s funny because I had always considered myself to be this deeply spiritual person because I had a working knowledge of spiritual concepts. I had read all of these scriptures and studied eastern and western philosophy at great lengths. The awkward discovery didn’t lie in my lack of confidence in explaining mysticism to others- obviously I can perform that task with ease- but in the fact that I hadn’t internalized these lessons. I had become a sort of pseudo-intellectual parrot that could regurgitate the experiences of others with no real emotion or zest. What good is spiritual knowledge if the practitioner isn’t using it to transform their lives?
Sometimes our intellect becomes a hindrance in our spiritual development. If heart and head aren’t aligned then Wisdom s work cannot be completed. Priest Pam had flat out told me that my ministry would fail if I didn’t allow my heart to influence my mind. However, that was incredibly difficult for me to accept.
Yes the intellect is a fantastic tool for grasping spiritual ideas but we must put forth the effort to allow Wisdom into our heart and experience the reverential awe that comes with it. From an eastern perspective those who allow themselves to over-rationalize their walk with the Divine are allowing themselves to become more diluted in the realm of illusion; meaning they’ll never free themselves spiritually.
By allowing your Spiritual-Self to flourish you are allowing yourself to awaken to the Divine presence within. Take it from someone who spent 20+ years questioning the order of the Cosmos there is nothing more freeing than simply just being. Allow God’s Wisdom to be perfected within and I guarantee you God will work wonders in your life. Peace be with you.