A spiritual life is the key to a holistic one. It is what connects all our different selves to each other, and us to the larger society and planet and universe in which we find ourselves.
Living life spiritually is the only way in which we feel whole within ourselves. Our desires and longings - whether material, emotional, intellectual or religious - all are clarified. As we ponder upon them, they help us to understand ourselves, even as they resolve themselves into priorities and help us rid ourselves of conflicts.
Religious living is the outer, ritualistic aspect of an inner movement which is spiritual. Religious living may seem repetitive whereas spiritual living places us upon a path, a movement. A religious life hinges on moral and im-moral, focus on God vs a focus on not-God. In a spiritual life, there are no judgments, not even between 'right' and 'wrong' and no distinctions between 'more' and 'less'.
There is just a path with experiences inward; that causes us to shift our focus and discover we are really where we need to be; where we re-discover our true nature.
There are no exhortations to be of serious mien, show a social morality or follow certain ideas. On the other hand, living spiritually heightens one's enjoyment of life: whether of a film, a place or a person. It adds other dimensions, without taking anything away.
Spirituality brings us face to face with paradoxes: not just in an intellectual way, but in our daily lives:
How do we discharge our worldly duties in a responsible way while remaining detached from the world?
How honour ourselves as individual souls, undertaking the path to enlightenment, while realising that we are really one with the universe?
The key to resolving these paradoxes lies in self-awareness. This comes from an inner knowing through meditation, attunements, and spiritual work; that does not stop at knowledge and intellectualism.
From following our "inner voice", our "gut feel", after becoming aware of it.
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©8 Aug 98 Meenakshi Suri