Vitality April 2014 – Conscious Living
By Gord Riddell & Kathy Ryndak
“Keeping it simple” or KISS is an adage that can be easily applied to spirituality. We don’t need to memorize scripture, say a litany of prayers, be ruled by dogma, go to church or a temple or practise complex spiritual disciplines. If we live by spiritual values and Godlike qualities we can keep spirituality simple. In this case our actions and intentions will speak louder than words. Let’s begin with a few quotes by the Dalai Lama to understand the concept of “Simple Spirituality”:
“My religion is very simple. My religion is kindness.”
“There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness.”
“Even without a religious perspective, love and compassion are clearly of fundamental importance to all.”
Now, let’s explore some key concepts to live a simple spiritual life.
Believing in a Higher Power or a force that is greater than us is essential to living a spiritual life. Some people will refer to this as God, the Divine, our Creator or the universe. This force is benevolent, loving, compassionate and not punitive. As Einstein suggested, it is necessary to regard the universe as a friendly, not hostile, place.
In believing in a Higher Power we can let go, surrender and trust the universe to support us. When things get too tough, we can turn it over to God and let God carry us as the famous poem “Footprints in the Sand” conveys.
Through our belief in a Higher Power, we come to know our higher purpose in life and realize that we are here to evolve and share our special gifts and light with the world. We acknowledge that God reside within us and in everything.
Meditation and Prayer
We don’t need to meditate for hours to connect to the Divine. If we even meditated for just ten minutes that would be very beneficial. We can keep it really simple by turning walking into a meditation by staying in the present moment and feeling a sense of the Divine inside and all around us. If you don’t meditate every day do not stress out about it – this is counter intuitive! It is just as important to be very mindful and aware of every thought that goes through our stream of consciousness. This is called being awake and conscious.
To simplify prayer, we can hold clear intentions about what we need and desire in life for ourselves and others. Prayer is another word for intention. We have to have an attitude that our prayers already being answered and have gratitude for this. Intending “already here,” “already done,” “already healed” helps us to manifest what we pray for.
In coming from heart consciousness, we embrace many spiritual values. We are kind to others, come from compassion and love. We have a balance of giving and receiving love in our life. We don’t judge others or ourselves and move into acceptance rather than trying to change people. The Dalai Lama says that “Love is the absence of judgement.” When we love ourselves, we accept all of our strengths and weaknesses. We love our humanness and are real and authentic. We forgive ourselves and can forgive others to free us from the prison of resentment.
Empathy, or putting one’s self in another’s shoes, is instrumental in developing compassion for others and ourselves. Empathy and compassion open our hearts and help us to love more unconditionally and without strong expectations.
Having gratitude every day for our blessings and abundance attracts more goodness to our lives. When we thank the universe, the universe recognizes us and sends more good things our way. We have faith and hope in our life yet have a balance of optimism and realism.
As the Course of Miracles teaches us, we come from love not fear. It is impossible to be loving and fearful at the same time. We do not get pulled down into fear-based thinking and scarcity consciousness.
Responsible and Empowered
Blaming is an energy that keeps us from being empowered. We point a finger at other people for our woes and remain stuck in victimhood. We will never grow or transform and remain trapped in unhealthy ways of being that hold us back.
It is important that we ‘own our stuff’ and triggers. Once identified, we can change old patterns into healthier ones. While we are not responsible for our childhood wounds but we are accountable for healing ourselves. We are responsible for our adult actions. When we take our power back, we move into empowerment. We neither come from power over others or a lack of power with others and ourselves.
Connecting to Source
Connecting to source, essence or our soul can be done through the portal of our heart. Any easy way to do this is to focus our awareness in our hearts, put our hands across our hearts and go to a feeling of gratitude and appreciation. Saying the vowel sound ‘ah’ can also help.
When we are connected to source, we have that “all is well feeling”, are living in the present moment and going with the flow. Our intuition is heightened. We are more attuned to synchronicity and experience little miracles. We feel good inside and make happiness and joy a choice.
Transformation and change are central to our spiritual growth and we realize we are here to evolve and understand our soul lessons. The formula for growth is: awareness + acceptance + action = change.
It is only our ego that resists change and our soul knows it is our raison d’etre. Through the transformational process, we become soul guided versus ego driven.
Integrity means we have a strong moral compass and solid ethics. We are honest, truthful, consistent and congruent. Integrity comes from the Latin word ‘interger’ which means we are whole. Our actions match our words and we are forthright. We don’t sell out or sell our souls. We are not corrupted by the negative aspects of money, sex and power.
Simple spirituality is very pure, wholesome and unadulterated. It makes it easier to be spiritual as it is not tainted by doctrines or man-made dogma. There are not complex, intellectual philosophies to comprehend as we can circumvent intricacies of the mind and over thinking. We become whole and one inside.