Spiritual Journeys

This title is not entirely satisfactory because the word “spiritual” has been misappropriated and applied to things which are not to my eyes very spiritual. I have met people who claim to be “spiritual” {man} but who are in fact largely selfish and highly materialistic.

It is a question of degree.

During any life one has challenges, these may be as simple as getting a promotion at work, health problems, relationship problems, problems with sanity. If one is ambitious one might seek to climb the ladder or greasy pole. These might be called mundane challenges.

In my opinion and I stress it is only that, opinion, truly spiritual journeys are beset with challenges that are beyond the ability of most to face. One is obliged to face them and with as good an attitude as possible. Some of these challenges are of a life-or-death nature. Some threaten one’s sanity. Most people when challenged to choose between a spiritually “correct” choice or material comfort, will opt for material comfort even though they kind of know they are bottling. People will choose safety and social acceptance as is exemplified by the bible story of Peter’s denial.

The good news is that one is never given a challenge that one is not capable of meeting. That meeting could be a very stretching experience. Challenge can sometime be very inconvenient indeed. To my eyes that is a marker of a worthwhile challenge, the higher the degree of inconvenience the better the “spiritual” reward. Some challenges last decades.

People who have a life that is beset with high magnitude challenges are being offered a major opportunity for spiritual evolution. This is a chance to make a large leap towards ultimate liberation. It is best to seize that opportunity gratefully with both hands. One is given the chance to work off a vast karmic debt and in doing so reduce the burden.

Trying to avoid a challenge, to shirk it, doesn’t mean that one succeeds. It means that the challenge returns either in the same life or subsequent lives greatly amplified in magnitude.

It is tempting to pity someone who has a serious malady and think but for the grace of God, there go I. Pity is not a helpful thing. The being who is so challenged is offered a chance of a tremendous leap forward. The indwelling being needs to learn and evolve and this means it gets to use a number of different vehicles. A malfunctioning vehicle is a good teacher.

One has to drain the cup of Karma willingly on a spiritual journey, whatever it may hold.

Dharma of the Day

self importance is a root cause of suffering
both for the self
and the others you inflict it upon

your self image is a pack of lies
insistence upon its reality
causes suffering and impedes evolution

if you are sure you are not being separative
then in your conviction
you most certainly are

unless omniscience is a quality you own
behaving as if you have the consciousness of a God
is inconsistent with reality

the wisdom of humanity
is an oxymoron
in nearly every case

pride and arrogance are also
root causes of suffering
they stem from the same germ

the desire for and enactment of revenge
not only causes dual suffering
it is one of the most karmically damaging things a being can do

clinging in all its forms suffocates
better to release a dove from a cage
than to watch it wither and die

living a redemptive life
not only eases suffering
but gains karmic merit

whilst karmic debt persists
enlightenment is not possible
and rebirth consequently inevitable

power over another being is an illusion
such illusory power is corporeal
and therefore has no reality
at the level of the dreamer there is no such thing

the primal root of all suffering
is individuating identity upon carnation
all beings resent this
few have sufficient knowledge to see this

emptying the cup of karma removes all suffering
this is the way to Bodhi mind
and eventual liberation

actions beget karma
redemptive action works this off
there is no other way