Have you noticed that more and more of us are saying “I’m spiritual but religious”? Reminds me of the flower-child-hippy-types of the 60’s. Yes I know, such were some of you. But, now the new way of being spiritual has less to do with rejecting the establishment’s concepts of being religious and more about a sense of oneness with others and a sense of personal relationship with the Universe, Source, or God. Many of you might even have your own concept of spirituality. For example, joining with or observing nature, meditating and/or chanting, nor writing/journaling. Or you may use different types of artistic expression such as painting, dancing, or singing to experience the spiritual. It seems like one’s spiritual practice can be a way of self-care. So, what do you do that might be your spiritual practice, and thus, the way you find peace or connection with something larger than yourself? Let’s explore this idea.
First, I’m suggesting that spirituality is an experience of wonder, perhaps peace, that may be experienced doing almost anything that creates a connection with something, someone, or yourself. As in the examples above it could anything. Hmmm, I think we are on to something. Think of this list of activities as gateways to your spiritual self-care. Oh, you have to stop right this moment and contemplate that idea. I mean it, stop right now. Take the deepest longest breath that you can and think about what you do that invites an experience of wonder to your being.
Now, I want to help me create a list of wonderment. So get a blank sheet of paper and let’s to do this: Write down everything that makes you go “aaahhhh”. I’m going to make my list so you can see it, so if you want to turn the monitor off and write your own list do it now. But, I’m going to write my list and share it now. Here goes:
1) Watching the sunrise and the sunset
2) Taking pictures of the sunrise and the sunset
3) Gazing at trees—this is just a wonderful experience for me
4) Watching parents and children in the public places and noticing inherited traits in the children
5) Watching babies sleep (that smile they give while sleeping)
6) Feeling a cool breeze (morning or evenings)
7) Marveling when I hear comments from great minds that I have thought myself—our connection with the Divine
8) Washing dishes (on given days cleaning in general)
9) Talking with strangers while waiting lines
10) Giving grace to “drivers” when I realize that I commit the same “driver” mistakes
Okay, are you back? Now, the purpose of our lists is to see if these practices give us a sense of wonderment, peace, or connection with others—whether that other is a human, plant, animal or inanimate object. I am proposing that anything that you experience that inspires you to connect is a spiritual practice. My motion is that these practices are ways of taking care of ourselves; sometimes taking care of other too. So the next time you find yourself gazing at a crack in the sidewalk, don’t stop yourself stay with it as long as you can. And when you break yourself away from the gaze, breathe because you have just had a life-giving spiritual moment. And so it is.