All mankind is spiritual. Each person’s spiritual path is unique and individual. Although we sometimes gather in groups, our personal spiritual expansion is ours alone to develop.
What do you need spiritually right now?
I’m 82 and suddenly death is a little higher on the list than it used to be. I thought I already had a strong philosophy of the process of life and death, but I decided I wanted and needed to strengthen my experience of being spiritual. I want to deepen my connection with All-That-Is—which I call “Tao”.
As you shape your unique spiritual practice, choose what you need from any form of spirituality that resonates with you. Look at the different cultures of the world and discover what calls to you. Chants, rituals, mudras, singing, prayers, affirmations, spiritual treatments, dancing. Spirituality is celebrated in so many ways. Adapt what resonates with you to align it with what you need right here and now.
Depending on where you are on your own spiritual path, you may need to develop different forms of expression. You may find you need to be totally alone. You may need an organized service led by one person. You may want to join a group where everyone speaks from their heart, or vision together, or study together. You may choose to meditate in your own special place, or you may simply go for a thoughtful walk in nature. All of those celebrations of your spirituality are perfect—particularly when they help you feel closer to Tao, to All-That-Is.
Shape your own spiritual practice
Experiment with ways to deepen your spirituality. I am drawn to elements of many of the world’s great religions. Not every word or any one, just certain concepts that feel right for me. My spiritual practice involves mindfulness and allowing my life to unfold. It involves reading authors who inspire me, who make me think and who are aligned with what I feel: Gibran, Rumi, Deng Ming Dao, Steven Mitchell’s translation of Tao Te Ching and The Second Book of Tao, Thomas Troward, and Emerson. I examine concepts that inspire me. I look for ways to apply those principles to my own life. I really like the idea of all of us belonging to a larger spiritual order, one that connects each and every one of us.
The Tao is All-that-Is, and that includes each of us
I am you. You are me. We are them. They are us. When we experience that deep connection with everything in this world as we know it, we become better caretakers, better friends, better stewards. Barriers come down and we see our sameness. Thoughtfulness towards animals and our planet increases. We walk more softly through our lives.
What are the goals of this larger spiritual order?
Compassion, understanding, forgiveness, peaceful intentions, highest good for all, kindness, serenity, shared wisdom.
We are all walking along the path of life. People come and walk beside us for a while and then move away. We move to join the flow around someone we resonate with and then we move on. Each person is a gift. Each experience is a lesson.
Feel the immenseness of the spiritual order around you—people, animals, plants, minerals, water, air. We are part of a larger spiritual order. Feel it, embrace it, and contribute to it.
To Sing a Deeper Song consider:
14- How Strong is the Foundation You Build On (podcast, 20 minutes)
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