You don’t need prayer, affirmations, meditation, church (or other spiritual community) services, or any other spiritual practice to “become more spiritual.” Now it might seem ironic that I’m saying this given that this post is included in the “spiritual practice” section of my website. Or because I have numerous prayers and guided meditations posted to my YouTube channel. Or because I’m currently teaching a class called “Deepening Your Spiritual Practice.”
The truth is that you don’t need any of them in order to “be more spiritual.”
Now there’s nothing inherently wrong with spiritual practice. If I thought there was, I definitely wouldn’t write and teach so much about various methods. I absolutely believe that we can and do benefit from spiritual practice. And at the end of the day, it’s not about how much you pray or don’t pray, how long you meditate each day (or not), how often you repeat affirmations, or how frequently you go to church or participate in a spiritual community.
While these and other spiritual practices might help you fill a need (for community or to help you consciously get centered, for example), they’re simply just tools for your toolbox – techniques to help you cultivate insight, and recognize and remember Truth.
Until you recognize that the living of life, itself, is spiritual practice, everything else is just filler to help you get there. So here’s some food for thought. Why do you engage in spiritual practice? And what does it mean to “be spiritual” or “become more spiritual” than you are right now? I encourage you to pause for a moment to really think about your answers to these questions. Your answers will shape your path forward.
For me, “being spiritual” means that I view everything in my life experience through a spiritual lens. That is, with the awareness that God (aka Good, Spirit, Life, Presence, Love, Intelligence, Mind) is all there is. And that I and everything I experience in the world around me are perfect reflections of this Presence. When I consciously recognize and live from the understanding of this spiritual Truth, I recognize my Oneness with All that is. In that conscious Oneness, I remember that there is nothing to fix because Perfection is all that’s present. No matter what it looks like.
The fact of the matter is that I’m always living my Oneness, whether I’m consciously aware of it or not. And if I’m living it unconsciously, more often than not, I’m living some belief in duality. Life will support those beliefs by giving me more duality in my experience until I’m ready to see beyond it.
It’s less about the techniques I use on a day-to-day basis, and more about how I’m living. That said, tools like prayer and meditation were essential in helping me get to this point, particularly when I was getting started on my spiritual path. And for someone else, going for a walk in nature might prove more beneficial.
Don’t try to force fit something that doesn’t resonate. There’s no one size fits all spiritual path or be-all-end-all spiritual practice that will “get you there.”
I know many people who engage in meditation, for example, because they think (or have been told) they should. And when spiritual practice becomes another excuse to “should on yourself,” it really defeats the purpose that many say is the reason they engage in spiritual practice in the first place – to find inner peace, calm and balance, to become more centered. It becomes another excuse to beat up on yourself for not doing something, or for not doing it “right” somehow. Who needs that?
Spirituality is not in the doing, it’s in the being. As in, “who am I being in this moment?” The answer to that simple and yet not always easy to answer question can be the most important spiritual practice you have because it gets down to how you are living Life.
If I believe that I’m a human being separate from my divinity, and that my divinity is something I have to work hard to attain or can only attain if I check off specific boxes on a to-do list of things that tell me I’m, somehow, “more spiritual,” then that’s the primary belief that shapes my experience of life.
If, on the other hand, I am consciously aware of and live from the fact that I am divinity in expression – as is everyone and everything around me – then I’m living from the understanding that God is All there is, that Oneness is the Fact of Life, and my experience of life shifts accordingly.
Net net, we’re always living, and experiencing, our concept of God/Good.
I know plenty of so-called “spiritual people,” who rail against various things happening in the world around them. I’ve even been known to do it myself from time to time when I believe I’m seeing two. And that form of “spirituality” just becomes a way to separate ourselves from, or think ourselves better than, another.
Somehow, the thinking goes, “I’m ‘more spiritual'” and, therefore, better than those who are less so. In arguing with the way things look, we deny the Oneness of God. In that perceived separation we’re “living two.”
All the spirituality you “need” is present and available right now, without fuss or effort. Because divinity is the whole Truth of who you are and of everything you experience. The more we consciously live from that understanding, the less we need other techniques to support our daily living.
So when you find yourself starting to spin about something happening in your life or in the world around you, ask yourself this question: Who am I being in this moment? Invariably, the answer boils down to not recognizing our own divinity and/or that of another, in seeing duality in some way, shape or form. And when we recognize that, it becomes possible to experience a shift.
Until you reach the point where you’re consciously living your Oneness with All that is 24/7/365, use whatever tools and techniques resonate most. The key is to be sure that you have a clear understanding of why you’re engaging in spiritual practice. What do you expect it will do for you?
P.S., if you haven’t yet taken the time to pause and reflect on why you engage in spiritual practice, take a few moments to do so now and share your thoughts in the comments below.