This past holiday afforded me the opportunity to look more closely at what I believe about the life of the Spirit (which is all life)….and how I can articulate it more clearly to those around me. It began with a conversation with my sister, and turned into a closer look at my spiritual calling.
This I believe…..
I believe in God, a Divine Higher power that is pure love, knowledge and truth. This same Divine nature which is the ground and the foundation of the universe is present in each of us too, and in all beings, regardless of age, gender, culture or religion.
This Divine inner nature, our true nature, is what connects each of us. As humans, we attempt to divide and separate ourselves, but because we are all truly spiritual beings, the core of who we are is the same. So try as we might we cannot ever truly be separate. Anytime we are attempting to be ourselves (our true selves) we are being spiritual and acting from this Divine center.
Of course people in different countries, contexts, environments and circumstances will follow a different path to connect with the Divine. This does not mean or imply that one path (Christianity or Islam or Judaism) is right and another is wrong. I believe it is all the same truth, but that due to our unique perspectives, contexts, environments and cultures we perceive and understand that same truth differently.
Although I do not consider myself a religious person, I am a spiritual person. I think that is a popular thing to say now, and I don’t mean to imply that there is anything wrong with being religious. I did get married in the Catholic Church, and my husband is a man of the Catholic faith. To this day I am very glad we made that choice as it provided a strong foundation for our futures together.
I also believe in spiritual calling, and that my personal calling is to connect. I connect to others, to nature, to myself and of course to that Divine Spirit and Ground of Being. (Thanks again Paul Tillich.) This call to connect is not about a job or an obligation, but this is the purpose and meaning behind all the work I do, personally and interpersonally, in my thoughts, actions and words.
This is also how I worship. I worship/ connect spiritually through still listening, ecstatic dance, heartfelt conversation, warm touch, close embrace, looking into another’s eyes. These are my spiritual practices, how my life’s work is manifest in the world.
I may not be a Christian, Hindu, or Muslim, but I do not see myself as different from these spiritual people. I am just as comfortable praising God/ The Divine/Love/ Light/ Pure Truth in Catholic Mass as in the Hanuman Temple where I learned to chant kirtan. This does not mean I have no values, or no moral compass, or a generic view of the spiritual life. It does mean that I know that the very heart, the core, and the foundation of each of these traditions worships the same God, practices the same Love, honors the same Truth. As humans we cannot see this and we let petty politics and cultural differences divide us. But love, truth, peace, and the Divine still unite us.
I daily say prayers and practice honoring and recognizing the Divine in the Universe. Daily I practice my spirit calling—to connect. Some may call this generic, New Age, or indecisive. In many senses it is. But I also recognize that I am on a journey, a spiritual journey—and believe that we all are whether we choose to see it or not. I also understand that I have a limited understanding of the spiritual realm inside this physical body. But still I choose to walk through my life on this physical earth with an expansive heart, open for more love, more truth, more wisdom and above all more God, and more Love, Love, Love.
One of my spiritual teachers told me that it is always more important to be kind than it is to be right. This is my moral compass, by inner guide, my religion if you will. When in doubt, choose kindness, choose Love , choose Truth, and that is being a spiritual person.