Over the next couple of weeks, I’m going to work on building a basis of understanding for spirituality. I recognize that I’m in it so deep that it sounds like a whole new language in the way that I express it. It shouldn’t. The point of spiritual awareness is to live your own life with love and kindness; it’s not about setting up a new set of hurdles or ideology. If anything spirituality is ultimately antithetical to ideology. Ideology is about itself and the ideas it presents. Spirituality is about you; it’s about oneness; and it’s about how there’s no difference between you and the other. But now, I’m getting ahead of myself.
Square 1: Believing in a Higher Being and Higher Purpose
In some way, if you’re interested in spirituality and growing yourself, you probably believe in a higher purpose. If not, let’s start there. What do you want? Why are you here? You don’t need to have answers now. These questions are supposed to start your thought process. Obviously, we’ve got some idea of how you got here biologically, and we know some of the basic body “wants” (food, water, air, etc.). But a lot of the rest is up to you to decide.
For those you with a sense of what you want, you may be looking for a deeper connection. This is where God steps in. My sense of God is probably unique. I don’t see God as one individual spirit. I don’t see God as a man or woman. I believe that God is all that is. God is in you, me, the cat next door, the sun, the Andromeda Galaxy, and everything else. God is the universe. God is.
I know that some religions (Buddhism) don’t believe in a God perse, but the Buddha starts to encompass a lot of those quasi-God-like qualities akin to Jesus. Nirvana can sound a lot like Heaven, although they’re conceptually very, very different. The point is that there is still a connection for the believer with something bigger and more expansive than he or she is.
Bad Substitutes for Divine Connection
There are plenty of bad substitutes for divine connection. Money is a big one. Sex is another one. People are so desperate for connection that they sell out themselves and others. Just think how much time is invested in a bad relationship for the safety of companionship or to get sex. Or consider all the hours put into a miserable job to get lots of money. Ultimately, that money is supposed to bring fulfillment and happiness. But whatever modicum of satisfaction comes from having the three car garage home or the trip to Maui is overshadowed by the daily grind.
People join a lot of organizations to try and make this connection as well. Fraternities, the Peace Corps, volunteer organizations, and lots of other groups are put in as substitutes of relative positive or negative impacts. It varies, and there’s nothing wrong with joining well-meaning organizations. However, they are still human run organizations with all the faults and flaws that humans bring to them. Whatever deeper connection or meaning they may offer will always be somewhat incomplete compared to your own connection with God.
Making Your Connection
People pray. People meditate. People read spiritual literature. People spend lots of time in nature. Really, God is everywhere.
For others of you, you know that you’re restless in heart. You’re looking for the way back to connection. God, the universe, Mother Earth, or whatever name you seek to use, is there for you, waiting with open arms to take you back home.