July 4th or Independence Day, marks a symbolic separation from burdens and outer controlling forces. More than a national holiday, imagine it as a day to free yourself from habits, thoughts, things and relationships that have hindered your independence and blocked your growth. Often we find ourselves caught up in partnerships where we adapt ourselves to the other’s views in order to please. In the process we compromise ourselves and no longer remain authentic to what our hearts are calling us to say and do. Sometimes the only way to resolve the problem is to make a break and become independent from them. Sometimes this may be only for a season. In other cases it may be for a lifetime.
Habits, too can weigh us down with heavy baggage and hinder our spiritual independence. Excessive needs for coffee, for example, may inhibit health and pollute the body. When we can’t find coffee, we feel we can no longer function. It has become an addiction and anyone who has been at this point and tried to stop knows that headaches, nausea and sometimes sickness follow. We are no longer free. Addictions to people can also cause the same feelings of dis-ease when we attempt to separate and gain some personal space.
Those who were the rebels during the American revolution espoused dreams of equality and freedom in a way previously unimagined. Their views truly were revolutionary for the times. So it is with those who walk the spiritual path today. Notions of equality and equanimity bring us to view people, places and things as equally important and essential to life. Money and status do not become the values on which people and things are measured. Their value is intrinsic and essential and based on their connection to the Divine. A world without people to pick up waste from our neighborhoods would be very dirty and yet we tend to look down at these roles as unimportant and less valuable than say the head of a company. All are important and all have their roles. No one is less divine than another. As one teacher said, “The worm is no less divine than a human being, only the light shines forth more through the hearts of men and women.”
Take a moment to contemplate what you would like to liberate yourself from today. What is the best way for you to do this? It may be through a ritual like burning a letter or photos, or simply moving away physically from the place or person that you feel is hindering you. Embrace the joy of your spiritual independence. All that you need is within you.
Bio: Debra Moffitt is author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life. A visionary and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices at the Sophia Institute and other venues in the U.S. and Europe. Her mind/body/spirit articles, essays and stories appear in publications around the globe and were broadcast by BBC World Services Radio. She has spent over fifteen years practicing meditation, working with dreams and doing spiritual practices. Visit her online at http://www.debramoffitt.com and http://www.awakeintheworld.com.