Spirituality means different things to different people. To me, it means a personal relationship with my Source. I don’t equate spirituality with the practices associated with any particular faith. That’s religion, whether it’s Christian, Buddhist, Wiccan, or any one of the world’s roughly 4200 different religious traditions.
To me, spirituality is personal. It’s what’s going on inside me. It’s how I relate to my higher self and to the greater whole.
To me, spirituality isn’t a part of my life. It’s all of it. It’s at the basis in who I am and how I approach everything from friends and family to work and money, to recreation and fun. Just like everyone else, though, I think I can do better. And by that I mean, I think I can expand my soul more, open my mind further, understand more, and share it better. So that’s what I mean by being more spiritual. And here are some easy ways to keep that level constantly expanding.
1. Challenge Yourself to Become a Beacon of Positivity
Everything in our “outer” lives is a mirror image of what’s happening within us.This isn’t always as simple as attracting whatever you think about. It’s more about the energy you’re emitting. Are you happy? Then you’re a magnet for things to be happy about. Things that match the exact way you’re feeling. Are you a complainer? Then you’ll experience more to complain about. Are you a praiser? Your life literally brings you more things to praise.
Change your attitude, and you will change your life. Be constantly looking for good things. Expect them around every corner. Be excited when you leave home, wondering what delightful surprises the Universe has in store for you. It takes practice to stop complaining about every petty annoyance in life, to say nothing about the great big ones. But you can do it. All it takes is practice.
There’s a great exercise to jump start you at A Complaint Free World
2. When Bad Things Happen, Look For Where it’s Pointing You
We will always have things we consider “bad” coming into our lives. Things we wouldn’t have chosen. Or so we think. The thing is, we did choose them. Everything in our lives is a reflection of who and what we are. But another way to think about this is in our defining of what’s good and what’s bad. For example, we all tend to think of death as the worst thing that can happen to us. But it’s the natural progression out of physical existence. It’s going to happen to everyone. There’s nothing wrong with death. It’s what’s supposed to happen. Yet we fight it, fear it, avoid it. We keep bodies on life support long after the souls in them have moved on. This shows just how skewed our ideas can get.
So when things we think of as “bad” happen to us, it’s
important to really look at what’s actually happening. Could this be the natural progression into the next part of our lives? Could it be an event that will move us on to something wonderful? Could this bad thing in our lives be coming to us because it’s showing us something that we deeply want to understand?
The challenges in life come for many reasons. But there’s one thing they all have in common. They come only to show us the way to the solution. When bad things happen, figure out what would be better, and then put your full attention on that. The solution to the problem. The cure for the disease. The new design of the burned out house. Always focus on the solution. That’s where the lesson is. In the solution. And you can’t get to it if you’re focused on the problem.
Here’s a wonderful 15 minute video on why and how bad things happen and how to deal with it when they do. It starts out with a question about a specific bad thing, but the answer applies to anything.
3. Love Everybody and Everything
The spirit we were, before we descend into these physical bodies is one being. One ocean of water, poured into many many glasses. Every human body is a glass. So are every animal, plant, and insect. When the glass breaks down, the water runs free, into streams and rivers and on to the ocean. It returns to its source.
We all come from one being, our source, the Whole. Meaning, outside these bodies, we too, are one. One. One being, choosing to experience the physical world from as many unique perspectives as possible, because that being, Spirit, God, whatever you choose to call it, exists to do and be and feel and know everything! So it pours itself into countless forms to experience countless things. So when I see a tree, I say, “That’s me, experiencing life as a tree.” And when I see an eagle, I say, “That’s me, experiencing life as an eagle.”
When it gets tricky is when I see a person who does harm to others, a person I would like to punch in the face for his or her behavior.
This spiritual growth thing is challenging. When faced with people like that, I try to think about the undeniable fact that we are all One. I can’t argue with that. I can’t say, “Well, all but him.”
So I remind myself that like me, he or she is a part of the Whole and exists for a reason. I ask myself how disconnected that person must be with the Source, and how much pain they must be in to do the things they do. I ask myself what our mutual Source is learning from this particular lifetime of disconnection and violence and pain. This is a great video from Abraham-Hicks about this very thing. It’s 18 minutes, so make a cup of tea, and open your mind, and reserve judgement, and try to really think about what it means.
If you hate anyone, you hate everyone, you see. We’re all one being. Your toe doesn’t hate your finger. Your heart doesn’t hate your liver. Hating a fellow being makes just as little sense.
Like all challenging experiences do, a disconnected lifetime shines a light on what would be better. Experiencing a lifetime from the perspective of a villain (or his victims, for that matter) might be what it takes to feed the Whole with understanding of why and how this level of disconnection happens, and how we can grow past the stage where it ever has to happen again.
It’s like getting the chicken pox once, creates the antibody to prevent you ever getting it again. The disease creates its own cure.
Once you’ve got all of that, then get your focus off the individual and/or his actions, and return your focus to what is going right with the world.
This is big picture stuff. That’s thinking way beyond the particular events of this current lifetime, to the greater impact each lifetime has on the Whole.
Thinking at this level, poking around and asking the hard questions, and then getting silent enough and open enough to listen for the answers deep in your soul, that is how you become a more spiritual person.
It’s not for everyone. But for some, it can open whole never levels of growth and understanding.
So, to expand yourself spiritually, here’s a nutshell.
1. Practice becoming more consistently positive. Practice it until it’s your default setting, and complaining is no longer automatic.
2. Look past the bad things that happen in your life, to their solutions. Look to the thing that would be better, and then hold that better condition as your constant focus. The solution, not the problem, should be foremost in your mind. That’s the lesson.
No matter the question, the answer is always love.