Building A Spiritual Foundation
THE IMPORTANCE OF CREATING A SACRED SPACE
I lived the first thirty years of my life in the illusions of chaos, fear, and ignorance. I knew there was “something more” but had no foundation on which to base this knowing. I was unaware of my true Self and allowed that feeling of “something more” to become overshadowed by the darkness of living life in an unconscious state. Because of this, I remind myself often, of the significance of a spiritual foundation and of embracing a subsequent practice upon which to live.
A spiritual foundation helps me to see that I am more than just a body moving through space; that there is a purpose to my existence; that I am a part of something much greater than myself. We are more than what we appear to be.
There are deeper aspects of us waiting to emerge. At the core of our being is the ever-present consciousness of Spirit. As multi-level beings, co-existing with nature, the human mind manifests an intrinsic drive towards this consciousness … towards wholeness.
Even a rudimentary understanding of this fundamental principle can bring about a clearer picture of who we are and the world we live in, thereby affecting the choices we make. Having a spiritual foundation and a meaningful spiritual practice can help move us along the path of wholeness. Once we gain awareness of our inherent spiritual nature, then a spiritual practice allows us to experience what we intuitively know.
The qualities of Spirit include love, compassion, wisdom, intuition, inspiration, authenticity, creativity, gratitude, and other life honoring ways of being. A spiritual practice allows these innate qualities to unfold naturally. We are spiritual beings temporarily relating to temporary conditions. While here, we express ourselves through the mind-body. Practice, however, shows us that we are neither the mind nor the body, that these are merely vehicles for which Spirit expresses itself.
building a Practice
“You already are a spiritual being. When the mind understands this and embodies its essence; that which you are in the invisible will become more apparent in the visible."
When we identify with our brain, personality, body, or with “outside” situations, we have lost connection to our essential nature as spiritual beings. Attempting spiritual growth at these levels of identification focuses on transforming our habituated human nature into a spiritual one. The fact is however, that the human condition does not become spiritual.
We are already spiritual beings. We already have a perfect spiritual nature and when we remove certain obstacles from our path, our spiritual-ness emerges authentically. Holmes (1948) states, “You already are a spiritual being. When the mind understands this and embodies its essence; that which you are in the invisible will become more apparent in the visible.”
A spiritual practice can help bring about the “internal” ideal conditions on which to experience this reality most effectively. My practice is mindfulness meditation.
On a transpersonal level, meditation affects every layer of being--mental, physical, emotional, spiritual, and environmental. Meditation serves as a reminder of who I am and how I choose to live my life. It carries me through the process of everyday living, keeping me grounded and connected to my source. It forces me to see and to use all of life as an opportunity to be a better expression of Spirit in this world.
Meditation sharpens the intellect, enlightens the mind, and promotes mind-body healing. It helps to recognize that we are not the mind; we are not our thoughts, and we are not our body ... we are the power behind these things. How we live our lives, how we treat ourselves, others, and our planet are direct reflections of our innercondition.
If we are not living in harmony with life, then we must look at what is blocking our path from doing so. Meditation can help bring about more harmony and balance by making us aware of our every word, action, and deed. Then, we can clearly see what obstacles are blocking our spiritual growth. As a spiritual practice, meditation allows me to be more centered. It moves me gently along the path and enables me to experience more of my true nature.
Spiritual maturity comes about with a firm foundation and practice. As a tree is known by the fruit it produces, spiritual growth is defined by how one lives life.