In acheiving and maintaining my mental health over the years, having a spiritual discipline in my life has been vital. Some people may call this a crutch, but for the person with a broken leg, a crutch isn’t viewed as a weakness. A crutch is a vital tool in acheiving optimal health.
In this Spiritual AF! series, I will be sharing advice and insights on how you can implement and integrate a spiritual dimension in your life.
Here at the onset, it’s important to point out that there’s a important difference and distinction between religion and spirituality. With that said, there’s a reason why this series wasn’t called Religious AF!
So what’s the difference?
Spiritual NOT Religious
Religions usually start with a positive religious experience (move of the Spirit), but with time, they devolve into dogmatic institutions that become more concerned with advancing the institution, rather than, caring for people and their community.
Spirituality, on the other hand, has the freedom to explore and experiment with various religious practices and disciplines – retaining what works and promotes individual/collective spiritual growth.
Now that we’ve come to terms with the difference and distinction between religion and spirituality, I’d like to share a quote that helps lay the foundation for everything we will be learning in this series.
“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.”– Pierre Teilhard de Chardin
Life is Spiritual As F***!
- A wave is an emanation of the ocean, but shares the same source.
- A beam of light is an emanation of the sun, but shares the same source.
- A concious being is an emanation of consciousness, but shares the same source.
- A child of God is an emanation of God, but shares the same source.
This quote helps us begin to reorient our lives and expand our worldview so we can tread deeper waters of inspiration, purpose and meaning. Without a spiritual dimension in our lives, it’s common/easy to devolve into nihilism.
The Benefits of Spirituality
I won’t tangle us up in the many scientific studies that prove people who have a more spiritual worldview or discipline in their lives are healthier than those who don’t. Though this is true, many people treat spirituality differently than they do other areas of personal development or health. In my view, this is a mistake.
If we’re willing to cut down or quit drinking alcohol because of the negative impact it has on our finances/health, why wouldn’t we apply the same logic to spirituality. This is largely a categorical error many people make because they confuse spirituality with religion.
In short, people who integrate spirituality into their lives live longer, have better relationships, and are happier than those who don’t.
What Does Spirituality Look Like?
The heart and soul of true spirituality is the ability to explore and experiment. In my personal spiritual practice, I’ve adopted universal principles from Judaism, Christianity, and various branches of scientific mysticism.
To be clear, I don’t suscribe to the secular scientism that’s being pushed by certain political activists today. In my view, secular scientism is just as counter-productive to spiritual development as religious fundamentalism is.
In your spiritual practice, you might find enlightenment in meditation. For another person, they may benefit from a hybrid form of meditation and prayer. I personally, have found utility in both. The beauty is that it’s up to you to determine what spiritual practices are conducive to your personal enlightenment and spiritual development.
In our next installment of this series, I will be sharing the 4 Stages of Spiritual Development. Subscribe/Follow so you can receive more great content directly to your inbox as soon as it’s published!
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you! If you have questions or you would like to just say hi, feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. As time permits, I personally respond to each and every email I receive.
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