INTRODUCTION TO SPIRITUAL PRACTICES
THE BEGINNING OF SPIRITUAL JOURNEY
The goal of spirituality is to live every moment of your day in union with Divine consciousness, with your spirit, and with the world. A truly spiritual person lives every moment of their day immersed in this connection, viewing the world through the lens of a spirit with a body rather than a body with a spirit. It might seem like a difficult task to dedicate time to discovering your spiritual self. We have jobs, schoolwork, family obligations, and lives that are already filled with responsibilities. Nowadays, a spiritual connection might feel like a luxury afforded only to people removed from the pressures of our modern society. Finding time for spirituality might seem impossible, and, immersed as we are in our material life and its obligations, why bother?
You don’t need to escape to a remote monastery in the Himalayas to benefit from spirituality. You don’t need to quit your job and meditate endlessly for hours each day. It just starts with one moment -- a simple decision to explore the part of you that is seeking something more in life, a connection to the world, your spirit, and the possibility that there are greater forces at work beyond your understanding. In this moment, ask yourself a question: “Why am I here?”, and set a conscious intention to devote a small portion of your day towards exploring the answer.
How will you benefit from this? Starting your spiritual journey feels like someone has handed you a map of your life. For the first time, you can begin to understand how your past has led you to this very moment, and you start to see a clearer picture of how to reach what you want to achieve. You’ll feel fulfillment like you’ve never experienced before and a sense of confidence and assurance that you are being guided in the right direction. Spirituality accomplishes this because it gives you the ability to pause and see the bigger picture, providing you with clarity, direction, and peace.
So you’ve set the intention to start your spiritual journey. How do you begin your exploration? There are many spiritual practices that aim to bring the mind, body, and spirit in balance and harmony, so your physical body, as well as your mental and emotional bodies, can help you realize your spiritual self:
PRACTICE OF YOGA
More than just a workout, yoga connects your mind, emotions, and physical body to your breath. In connecting to your breath, the source of life, you become conscious of the energy flowing through you and the energy of the world around you. This energy is the life force, or prana, flowing through all things. It is a practice of physical movements that connect you to your spirit and the spirit of all other living things by witnessing and experiencing the prana that gives all of us life. Yoga not only releases stress and makes us physically stronger, but also makes us more conscious and mindful of our personal energy and how we send this energy out into the world.
In moments of closed eyes and complete silence, we look inward to find who we truly are. Meditation, the act of mindful, quiet reflection, allows us to connect with our best and highest selves within us, the divine source of life that is within everyone. In closing your eyes, concentrating on your breath, and quieting the mind of all concerns of daily existence, you open yourself up to receiving what your inner self, your spirit, wants you to know. Meditation is the exploration of the world through the exploration of the self; it is letting go and surrendering to your inner higher self, who already knows all the answers. Taking the time to meditate will give you clear insight and strong intuition to guide you on your best path in life.
PRACTICE OF REIKI
Reiki is the practice of receiving and using energy direct from the divine source. Reiki can be used to heal physical and emotional issues, and improve concentration and intuition. With Reiki techniques, you can dive into a deeper meditative state that provides a stronger connection to your inner higher self. Rather than using the energy that is inside of you, or your life energy, Reiki provides you with an additional source of energy you can use to achieve positive growth and development in your life. Through Reiki “attunement”, a Reiki practicer can receive the ability to receive this divine energy, bringing them to a closer connection to their spirit and the divine consciousness found in all things.
All these spiritual practices bridge the gap between your mind and body in your physical reality to your spirit and the Divine. All three practices fully complement each other; when combined, the benefits of these practices increase and strengthen one another. It doesn’t matter whether you do the practices for a few minutes or a few hours--any and every moment you spend in spiritual reflection will benefit you in all areas of your life. And, as with any exercise that strengthens your muscles, with time and dedication you’ll find it increasingly easier to engage fully in these practices. Step by step, you’ll feel that finding time for spiritual reflection is no longer daunting, but simple, enjoyable, and fulfilling.