Beliefnet
Letting Go with Guy Finley

What we need to succeed in the spiritual life is a heart that can see.

Most people spend more time taking care of their physical bodies than their spiritual ones. They preoccupy themselves with insane appetites to try to keep the body alive instead of being concerned that their spirit is dying.

The truth is… without our spiritual efforts, without working to see what we must see, there is no hope for us. So how do we begin to have a new appreciation for spiritual exercise?

Start over. Be newly roused to become a spiritually self-working man or woman.

Each time you will agree to see something about yourself, it produces within you the right initiative. Real spiritual exercises are created to help you wake up to the truth about you. Waking up is a means to seeing what it is that has you asleep. Seeing you’re asleep is the beginning of your real spiritual struggle. Real spiritual work is not a means to any kind of end that you can envision. It is the means to moving you towards becoming conscious of what you are in relationship with. It is the means to becoming a different order of human being.

 

It is a distinct stage in the development of the aspirant when — rather than being easily distracted by some imagined consolation for his pain, or by concluding who is to blame for it — his first and real preference in the moment is to increase his consciousness of his condition, and not to find ways around it.

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Guy Finley explains that true goodness is not measured by actions which validate your image of being good. What is truly good has no self-reference — it comes from pure action, which is a natural outcome of being present.

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The character of goodness, of compassion and kindness that we would like to reflect and express before our friends (and enemies), requires that we place “its” life before our own. And yet, when we agree to this interior action of self-sacrifice, not only is our life returned to us, but we find that it has been made greater than it was — even though we had to first surrender it to something seen as being greater than ourselves.