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Wednesday
Jan302013

Rooms 206-225: Forge Your Own Spiritual Path

Rooms 206-225: Forge Your Own Spiritual Path
Doing What Matters

“The majority of men live without being thoroughly conscious they are spiritual beings.”
Kierkegaard

Tell people that you go to church, or believe in God, or are a member of this religion or that, and most people won't bat an eye. But tell someone you are on your own spiritual journey and you will invariably get a few raised eyebrows, often followed with them looking down at your feet to see if you're wearing socks with your Birkenstocks. 

As a rule, we understand Christian or Muslim, Buddhist or Jew, Lutheran, Catholic, Baptist or Seventh Day Adventist. We even get atheist or agnostic. Those things make sense to us. They are familiar, on street corners and in living rooms everywhere, with set guidelines and rules to the journey. 

Sure, there are different guidelines for each path, but the idea is the same. Do X and Y and you'll get everlasting Z. It’s good clean math. 

But, to say simply that you're on your own spiritual path without reference to anything remotely organized—well, that is a whole different string of prayer beads. For some, it's borderline anarchy—a license to do everything and be accountable to nothing. For others it’s ill-defined, soft, and New Age.  

And I get it. Most of us like our roads neatly laid out for us, with clearly marked signs and easy to follow turn-by-turn instructions. It guarantees we get where we want to be as quickly and safely as possible. 

Of course, that’s exactly the problem with having our path laid out for us. It’s easy. And if we’re not careful, easy can make us lazy, complacent, and, even worse, reliant on someone else to do our own driving. After awhile, we won’t even have to read the signs. We can just follow along with all the other cars heading in the same direction. 

Unfortunately, once that happens, the journey doesn’t belong to us anymore. It belongs to somebody else. 

In a flash of a second, we’ve fallen asleep at the wheel. 

Not that The Other 999 Rooms would ever let that happen. 

Yes, it’s time to once again step out of the one room we’ve been living in, or in this case, the one lane highway. It’s time to take the next exit and start heading off the beaten path.  

It’s time to forge our own spiritual path.  

Rooms 206-225: Forge Your Own Spiritual Path
Doing What Matters

Don’t worry. Forging your own spiritual path doesn’t mean you have to renounce your worldly possessions and go live in a cave, nor does it mean you have to be a vegan, wear patchouli and reverently step around the ants on the sidewalk.

I know it's nice to imagine our enlightened masters speaking like Yoda, while nurturing injured birds back to health with an eyedropper of water and love, but the fact is we live in a modern world and sometimes the spiritual traveller uses his middle finger, cuts people off in traffic, and wants to do unmentionable things to the barking dog next door. 

We are not here to be perfect, but to evolve, grow and become conscious of our true nature. And we don’t need to escape to some remote Himalayan mountain to find it. Instead, we can use our modern world—with all its inconveniences and annoyances—as a road lamp on our way to spiritual enlightenment. 

And we can do this no matter what path we choose to follow. As the old Chinese proverb says, “There are many paths to the top of the mountain, but the view is always the same.” 

So, whether you follow a particular religion, Mother Earth, the stars, or a personal code of ethics, it doesn’t matter. 

What matters is that we each forge our own spiritual path. 

What matters is that we step onto this path, boldly and fearlessly, unafraid to follow our hearts toward the life we want to live.  

What matters is that this path is our own. Not our parent’s, friend’s or community’s. Ours. What matters is that we adopt truths not because they’ve been handed down to us, but because we have gotten on our knees and picked them up for ourselves. 

What matters is that we embark on a life-long quest for knowledge and wisdom, but never at the expense of experience, for it is only through owning our experiences that we earn the awareness that comes with it.  

What matters is that we breathe life into our individual paths with every step we take. That we walk our path with love, humor, honesty, wide-eyed enthusiasm and an insatiable thirst for more.

What matters is that we remain unafraid to question, doubt, and challenge our path, for to do so will only make us stronger.  

What matters is that we live our own truths with conviction and purpose, while openly accepting others truths as equally valid. As the poet Rumi said, "there are many ways to kneel and kiss the ground.” 

What matters is that we become trailblazers in our search for truth, awareness, and purpose, warriors who are strong, humble and unapologetic for our desire to discover the true essence of our being.

What matters is that we step out of the safety of our home and begin the long walk toward real freedom. 

  

As Marianne Williamson said, “The spiritual path is simply the journey of living our lives. Everyone is on a spiritual path; most people just don't know it.” 

But, the moment we do know it, that is the moment when we put our happiness and peace in our own hands. It’s the moment when life becomes an adventure. 

Forge your own spiritual path and your life will never be the same.

 

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