SPIRITUAL HAPPINESS FOR THE ORDINARY PERSON
This page is my offering of spiritual happiness for ordinary people only – so if you’re a bit special, or a bit beautiful, or a bit out of the ordinary in any way, please leave now. We will refund your money at the door.
While the OOO’s (Out Of the Ordinaries) make their way out, lets talk about spiritual happiness.
What is it?
My old copy of Webster’s Dictionary defines spiritual as: Pertaining to or consisting of spirit; not material; incorporeal; pertaining to the mind or intellect; mental; intellectual; pertaining to the soul or its affections as influenced by the Divine Spirit; proceeding from or controlled and inspired by the Holy Spirit etc. etc. etc.The same defines happiness as: The state or quality of being happy etc. Click this link for Wikipedia’s definition of spirituality
In my experience, spiritual happiness is quite rare, and characterized by the following traits: serenity, kindness, humility, non-materialistic and of course the happiness just flows from them. A spiritually happy person is in tune with and accepting of themselves.They feel no need to impress anyone or to compete.They love themselves (not in an egotistical way) the way they are. So, is your spirit happy?
No? The best way I know to achieve a happy spirit is to give it room to emerge by learning meditation
Studies have shown that children are more resilient when they have some kind of spiritual belief system.Well, guess what?
A child + a few years + a few kilos = you and me! So, we are ALL more resilient when we have spiritual beliefs.If you clicked the above Wikipedia link you would have read that a part of spirituality is the perception of a connection to ‘something bigger’ than oneself.This does not mean we should cart ourselves and everyone we care about to church every week.However, if you do attend church and have found an organized religion in which you can express your own spirituality that suits your needs, continue merrily on your way!
Hands up who knows someone ‘holier than thou’ who attends church every week, may even be on the committee and yet they can’t speak with civility to their own family? Okay I can’t quite see down the back………………oh yes, yes that’s nearly everybody here! Thanks you can put your hands down now.The scary part is that person thinks they are spiritual/holy! They honestly believe walking into a building on a regular basis and being nice to the people there (whilst being an -no can’t say that on the net- a ‘less-than-nice person’ six days a week) makes them heaven-bound! Go figure!! Their God (or whoever) must only work church hours!
There are obviously many thousands of people for whom organized religion works – but the numbers of dissatisfied churchgoers are climbing. Congregations are realizing that listening to a man in a frock preaching from a rule book written centuries ago is not of much real relevance in their daily lives. People are searching for a more personal connection with ‘something bigger’ and yet many more have found it.
If you have tried an organized religion but it didn’t sit well with you, or you haven’t even dipped your toe in the water, this page may be the answer to your prayers (pardon the pun).Please be aware this is not a criticism of churches. Many spiritually happy people do attend church as a way of expressing their own spirituality – not merely to ensure gaining admission upstairs when their big day arrives! I’m not here to tell you what to believe, but given the previous show of hands, it would be very difficult to believe spiritual happiness is found inside a building.
Well then, where is it?
Whether you think you’re a spiritual being or not, your spirituality is inside of you! Not in a building, nor in a rule book (but there are some greatbooks which can help you form your opinions/beliefs). We are all spiritual beings i.e. we all have spirits. If you are ignoring yours, you may be an unhappy person, or you may have an otherwise ‘perfect’ life, but experience a gnawing emptiness you can’t quite put your finger on. If I’m describing you, why not open your heart and mind to your spiritual side? Closed-minded people, having no spiritual beliefs, are ignorant of the life-changing potential they are eschewing. Everything you need is within you – you just need to find it!
Who do I ask?
It is not necessary to find yourself a ‘guru’ (especially if they want thousands of dollars for the pleasure of speaking to you). Spiritual happiness, like any form of happiness is an individual, personal state. It is not up to anyone else to tell you what will suit you or lead to your spiritual happiness.
Do you know someone with a happy spirit?
If you are well acquainted, they wouldn’t mind answering your probing questions. If you’re not well acquainted, I should imagine they’d be flattered by your opinion of them as ‘happy’ and by your intrigue as to their spirituality. But be careful here, numerous people put on a happy exterior for the world when they’re really miserable inside. Don’t let ‘happy’ be your only search criteria – you should also know this person is kind, content and ‘together’.This person also need not become your guru. They are just an information source. Gather information. Ask different people. Read. Make your own decisions. Visit some organizations of interest on fact-finding missions (be careful here too – there are some scary, weird cults out there that prey on the vulnerable, so take someone older and wiser with you). Become your own guru. The knowledge and experience you collect on your journey will slowly form your belief system. Don’t believe everything you hear. Follow your intuition.
You are your own best guide.
Why Do I Need Spiritual Happiness?
When you develop your own spiritual beliefs,you will find life is easier. Depending on how long you search and how deep you delve, you may also find answers to the “Why am I here?” type of questions. They will be answers that make sense to you (and possibly only you!).
Expanding your mind to encompass a ‘big picture’ view of your life really helps you to make sense of it all. Making some sense of the universe will assist you to overcome lifes’ hurdles. That sense of connection to something bigger will comfort you in times of need, reassuring you that you are not in this life alone.
Imagine, just for a moment, you are walking through a seemingly endless, dark tunnel, alone. You trip over several times when the ground becomes uneven, but still you stumble on, not even aware of why you are here or your ultimate destination. Your awareness is limited to the fact that you are in this tunnel and one day you won’t be.
NOW imagine that suddenly you become aware of a presence by your side! A welcome presence. A welcome presence with a torch! This presence knows the terrain and is able to help you negotiate your way through the bumps and troughs.You trust this presence to help you reach a destination of which you were previously unaware. It also explains why you are in this tunnel to begin with. At a certain point in your journey, the presence bids you to turn around as it shines its torch on the path you have trod. To your amazement, the bumps and troughs form a brilliant pattern to which you were oblivious during your negotiation of them!! Everything now makes sense: the tunnel, the bumpy terrain and the need to move forward. This presence has given you a perspective you would never have discovered alone.
And that perspective my friends, is spiritual happiness.
When Do I Need Spiritual Happiness?
The very short answer to this question is: every minute of every day.
You will find the more spirituality you discover inside yourself, the more often you use it. The more often you become aware of a connection to something bigger, the stronger that connection becomes. The stronger that connection becomes, the happier you become, spiritually. Unfortunately, there may be times in your life when your spiritual beliefs are all you have to keep you going. Don’t be one of the many, many people who don’t form their beliefs until their world comes crashing down around them. If you spend some time now really working out what feels right for you, then, should your world come crashing down, your safety net will be firmly in place.
If you are a parent, its even more urgent to get your spiritual happiness together, so you can be a great example to your kids.(See comment above re resilience!) But bear in mind, whatever suits you now may not be what feels right to them when they grow up. They, too will need time and space to explore their own spirituality.
How Do I Find This Spiritual Happiness?
I covered a lot of this answer above under ‘Who Do I Ask?’ when I talked about finding someone you admire and asking them about their spiritual side. Also very carefully, explore some churches/spiritual organizations that may pique your interest. Also, read, read, read, choosing the information that fits well with you, to take on board.
However, there is one more very important action you can take if you are to plumb the depths of your own spirituality…….and that is learning meditation. You may be shocked to learn just how many different religions and philosophies extol the virtues of meditation. Everyone from Catholics to Buddhists use meditation in some form or other.
If you’d like to try (or continue) meditation in a casual, friendly, relaxed environment, you could try my meditation classes in the Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, Australia. Read what happy Melbourne clients have to say about them.
To find the spiritual happiness you deserve, explore the spirituality within you. Define your belief system and live it!
A happy life is incomplete without spiritual happiness!
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A molecular biologist turned Buddhist monk, described by scientists as “the happiest man alive,” demonstrates how to develop the inner conditions for true happiness.
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