Beginning to Live
Sometimes those of us who are interested in expanding our lives to include spiritual enlightenment do not know where to begin. We read about meditation, yoga and prayer and we still say to ourselves “I can do this later. I’m not sure where to begin. I don’t know what to do to be more spiritual.”
Here’s a roadmap for you with no road. First, be honest with yourself about what you are looking for with regards to enlightenment. Are you looking for increased wealth, a better job, a soul mate or an end to depression? These goals are worthy but may not assist you in your search.
On the other hand, are you looking for happiness? Contentment? Do you want to be less stressed, nicer and more compassionate in your daily life? There we go – these are what you gain with spiritual enlightenment.
Interestingly enough, once you attain happiness, contentment and compassion the other improvements in your life happen for you also.
You may find once happiness, contentment and less stress are in your life – you will not need greater wealth and may be quite content with the job you have. Your relaxed happy self will attract love and companionship to you. Definitely these are bonuses but supreme in all of these are happiness and compassion.
If you can look at others with as much love as you do your own family, you will then open your heart and allow yourself to feel their sorrow. We all have some sorrow in our lives, some more than others. There is no person alive today who has not experienced sorrow.
When focusing on how to improve your life and increase spiritual awareness, nothing works like the Golden Rule. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you is a guide that is not just Christian in meaning. It is the very fiber of life. If you consider that everything you do to someone else has a concomitant effect on you – then by doing to others you are doing to yourself.
Finding Your Way
There isn’t just one way for you to attain peace, happiness and compassion. There are many spiritual/religious paths available to you. In yoga alone there are four. I practice Bhakti yoga – the yoga of devotion. There is the yoga of knowledge called Jnana yoga, the yoga of action called Karma Yoga and the yoga of meditation called Raja Yoga.
Given all these different ways and means, not to mention Buddhism and Zen and many, many more – you must decide which is best for you. You can always try whatever appeals to you and see if you feel it is right. Intuitively you will know.
Your intuition will become strong and vital and an unforgettable part of your life. You will no longer say to yourself “Why am I feeling this?” but will accept that you ARE feeling it and you should pay attention to it. I knew just getting off the elevator whether or not I could stay at a law firm past lunch time. Sometimes I left before the first break. It wasn’t something my temp agency appreciated, but I knew when to get out of a situation in which I was uncomfortable. You will know too. And you must listen to yourself.
Some spiritual texts speak of the ego as if it is your enemy on the path of spiritual enlightenment. Here’s my theory. Your ego was given to you by Brahma, God, the Cosmic Consciousness for a reason. Your ego is part of your whole being. Do not try to kill it. You do not need to. You need to practice loving your ego until you can say “Oh ego don’t let me be selfish and despondent anymore – let me see the face of Brahma” and ego will step out of the way so the Divine can be with you.
A word on spiritual paths – just to let you know – you don’t need to be on one. You are already there. You just need to remove the white noise of your life so that you can recognize who you are and why you are. You don’t have to search for a damn thing. The Cosmic Consciousness to which you belong does not set up lines or highways or roadblocks. This isn’t a seeking it’s a stopping. Stopping is what you do to recognize that you are already enlightened.
Stop in Place
I have, in the past, had a need for geographical healing. I would think that if only I could move there or there or there then my life would be better and I could be happy.
This failed. My poor family has moved from state to state – for jobs mostly – and from country to country. I did not automatically achieve happiness once I arrived in the new location. I did achieve a level of busyness that allowed me to focus on my great organizational skills, but I did not find automatic happiness.
While I lived in Canada, I spent a lot of time with my chanting. Every day, no matter what, from 1 pm until about 3 pm I chanted. I might have driven my family nuts except that our house was large and I shut my door. Sometimes I would be so happy during my chants that I would break down and cry. I am never sad while chanting. This was the beginning of the breakthrough for me. I knew in that music I had found my God. I cannot tell you how strange it was to a white Anglo-Saxon former protestant person to recognize that I had heard this music before – many lifetimes before. And I grew. I learned that no matter where I am I am happy. I do not need to move again. I can rest in the arms of Brahma.
I was not raised in a home full of compassion. My mother didn’t have any milk of human kindness and she spent most of her life envious of others because of what they had. Not because of who they were – but because of what they owned. Naturally I developed a materialistic attitude toward life. More was good, less was bad. I shopped (I still shop) and I lived from getting to getting thinking that I would be happy if only I had THAT.
THAT does not make you happy. A soul mate will not make you happy. A new job or more wealth will NOT make you happy.
Happy is peace. Happy is love for every being. Happy is compassion for the sorrows of others. Happiness is loving God. Happiness just is. You have it already. You do not need to pursue it. You are there. Let me show you where you are ………….