Practical Spirituality

Take Time to Listen to the Ocean

You need to
have fun–often! And you need to get out of your busy mind–often. Not only does it help to develop a playful attitude during
daily activities, but you also need to schedule time to relax and be creative.
The expression “Get out of your head!” sounds strange but requires little
explanation. Think about what fun
means to you, such as playing cards or sports, watching movies, going to the
park, or hanging out at an art gallery. It doesn’t matter what it is or if
others find it entertaining–you need to enjoy it. Find something you can lose
yourself in.

It’s important not to always pick
activities that have ulterior motives, such as career advancement or personal
growth. Remember that plain old fun is critical to your well-being! Another
common motive is escape, but what you do for pleasure should be engaging, not
numbing. When you take time for yourself, you should feel even more fulfilled
and in touch with your essence–not hollow and disconnected.

An ideal form of recreation for people
with Inspiration Deficit Disorder is to be more creative and get involved in
something artistic. Sports are also ideal, but they can get too competitive and
feed your Persona. If you want to choose a sport to feed your essence, that’s
fine, but try playing so that there isn’t a winner or one single “right way” to
score. The bottom line is to promote peace and lots of laughter. You might also
try shifting your attitude about a sport you already know and love. Work to
experience it for the joy and pleasure, not from a place of striving to be
perfect. Other ideas include taking a class in cooking or watercolor painting;
gardening; taking walks in nature; going fishing; learning to play chess or
bridge; playing on a team; joining a book club; or taking up a new craft, such
as knitting, woodworking, or scrapbooking.

The key word is fun, not indulgent. You need to be affirmed in delight, meaning
that enjoying simple pleasures will remind you of the joy of living.

What activities nourish YOUR essence?

Excerpt from Jonathan’s upcoming book, Inspirational Deficit Disorder

If you want to understand the stars you will need to
use a telescope. If you want to understand a molecule you will need to use a
microscope. If you want to understand the ocean eventually you will need to get
wet. If you want to understand the spiritual nature of the world you will need
a spiritual practice. In the center of all the philosophy and science that
explains and debates the existence of the soul and God lays one simple truth:
spirituality is an experience. It is a journey that no one can take for you. It
is an understanding that no one can give you.

The greatest challenge Galileo faced when he
discovered the truth about the organization of our solar system was that the
“experts” and “officials” of his time period refused to look through his
telescope to see what he could see. Many of us reject the Galileo’s of our
time; we avoid spiritual ideas that challenge the way we see the world. Or we swing
to the opposite extreme and believe them without a second thought. We look to
the experiences and ideas of others to tell us what to think and feel. We make decisions
about what we believe without investing ourselves fully in the questions.

We have forgotten that the mind is only a small
aperture through which we acquire limited kinds of knowledge and that the body,
the heart, and even the soul itself, have ways of perceiving what is true and
healing. Wisdom is much more than an idea. Spiritual enlightenment asks that we
awaken our spiritual senses so that we might personally discover and remember
what is sacred.

Excerpt from Return to the Sacred

is more than the accumulation of old information in an instantaneous brain
blast. It’s the gut feeling, the hunch, or “knowing” that defies experience or
understanding. We’ve all had these experiences at one time or another. Some
dismiss them and some, like me, rely on them for the most important decisions
in life. 

Research has shown that intuition, understood or not, is a vital
quality of a successful person in any field. Mothers say that “a mom just
knows,” business people call it “acumen,” and medical doctors consider it “good
judgment.” Often, it is nothing more than the small voice inside that gives us
a clear sense of direction or action. Although we can’t explain its origin,
some part of us knows that it’s correct. Following our intuition is critical in
ending Inspiration Deficit Disorder.

So listen to your gut! When you make a
decision, pay attention to the way your inner voice affirms or cautions you.
Few people regret following their intuition. Most people’s inspiration deficits
reflect a pattern of ignoring their deepest sense of what is best for them.

Do you have an experience of listening to your intuition?  Please share!

Excerpt from Inspiration Deficit Disorder

Lasting change in the world begins in the heart and
the soul of each person. It begins in your home. It is easy to find people who
can tell us what to believe, what is wrong, and what to do. The big challenge
lies in finding the willingness to be the
. Willingness cannot be taught; it comes from within. Willingness
arises when we live with integrity and congruence – inside and out. Willingness
grows in love. Deep spiritual awakening helps us to love ourselves, our
community, and this amazing creation. Loving our world leads to spiritual
awakening. Be courageous enough to love more. We respect and heal what we love.

It has long been said by masters everywhere, “When
there is peace in the self, there is peace in the home. When there is peace in
the homes, there is peace in the community. When there is peace in the
communities there is peace in the nations. When there is peace in the nations,
there is peace in the world.”

Spiritual practice has been seen as a luxury by many,
but spiritual awakening is now a necessity. Many criticize those who are overly
committed to a spiritual path as being unrealistic or disengaged from the
world. True awakening could not be further from that claim.

Where we find people and communities that have
committed to the path of awareness, we find great healers, helpers, and problem-solvers. Where we find people who
feel connection and compassion, we find solutions, changes and inspiration. In
the embrace of spiritual experience and the access to Divine Energy and
creativity, we will find new solutions to old problems, and lasting ways to
honor this magnificent existence of which we are all a part.

If you strive to live your life as a spiritual journey,
feed that intention with the lessons and maturity you cultivate through a
regular spiritual practice. Once you make a lasting commitment to one or more
of the Master Paths you will quickly find powerful changes within and around
you. Connections, synchronicity, and intuition will come to your aid.

As you cultivate spiritual experiences through
practice and intention, your inner vision will develop, your heart will open, and
your mind will release the illusions that breed fear and attachment. You will
become the medicine that you seek. You will be a healer to all you know. For
some of us, it will happen in simple ways, like showing kindness in the grocery
line, volunteering, or learning not to pollute our bodies and the earth. For
others, we will commit to projects and pathways of healing that will reach
around the world. Every little bit helps.