Nature Of Spiritual Reality:
What I have been calling “spiritual realism” has developed over a few decades of direct engagement in the nature and meaning of spirituality. Even though spirituality has ceased to be ‘mainstream flavor of the month’ I know that it is deeply important to many thoughtful and creative people.
There are people who come to the spiritual cold; which is to say from a background of intelligent agnosticism or even atheism. Yet I think it is true that most spiritually concerned individuals come from a background of religion however loosely defined. Whatever the inner backdrop to a renewed concern with spirituality may be, the fact remains that false religiosity will tend to intrude itself into the awareness of spirituality. This is almost invariably due to familial or cultural religious conditioning. There is also the fact that many people are actually into religion but for various reasons- all of them bad- choose to call their religious preoccupations ‘spirituality’.
Religiosity in any form is a real obstacle to genuine spirituality. Spiritual realists reject religiosity, superstition, and comfort zone beliefs in all their forms. A vital living spirituality does not require tradition of any kind to prop it up. The truth of this statement becomes obvious the moment we realize that authentic spirituality is grounded in the eternal which is of course “ever present everywhere”.
The fact is that whatever state you are in as you read this; you are invariably in a modification of a spiritual state of being and awareness. A corrupt religious tradition tells us that we must do something in order to become spiritual beings but nothing could be further from the truth. If you were not already and always a spiritual being nothing in this world or any other could turn you into one. Fair enough that’s obvious too.
Now you may be asleep to the real nature of yourself, you may be strung out on distractions, sex, drugs, consumerism, or any number of mind numbing existential dead ends. But in all probability if you are feeling spiritually obstructed; the chances are that you haven’t learned yet how to think clearly about spirituality. Yet you must know that such a clear spiritual thinking is possible or you wouldn’t be surfing spiritual websites and blogs. Unless you just stumbled in the door are about to stumble/click right back out again.
By pointing to ‘clear spiritual thinking’ I am in no way advocating any kind of “spiritual science”; one pernicious version of which is popular with certain misguided Hollywood celebrities. Neither am I advocating the “spiritual scientific thinking” of nineteenth century brain washing cults or designer theologies like anthroposophy, or cabalism. The whole notion that by adopting a ‘spiritual ideology’ the answers to real spiritual questions can be found is patently absurd. This too must be obvious.
And what is more obvious yet is that none of these bogus ‘spiritual paths’ have made even a dent in our collective trance-tragic. If you are looking for a new pleasure machine, best thing is to stay away from spirituality all together or it will really mess you up beyond all recognition. If on the other hand you are striving to get to the heart of the matter of being human and aware that you are mortal, then it is only authentic spirituality that can adequately address that crucial all important concern.
The best approach is to assume that everything you think you know about spirituality is probably wrong. I do this at least once a day. Clears the mind and allows the one state of awareness that can help, to spring into focus. It is called “beginners mind”, not relying on anything you think you know, but simply allowing yourself to become totally aware of the state you are in right now. It can also be called “choice-less-awareness”. I call it “the here now” beyond conditioning, reaction, need, fear, hope, desire- fill in the blank.
In this “here now” I simply am the way I am, things just simply are the way they are. It all may be horribly difficult complicated and painful or dull boring and inane or apple pie nice and splendid. The main thing is that I am not allowing any outside authority, belief system or ideology, to decide what my existence “here-now” means to me. If you get this you see that it is radical in the deepest way because from “here-now” nothing can manipulate me, not science religion or philosophy and least of all politics and public opinion. And this is the beginning of spiritual reality. And this is the beginning of real freedom.
If you have arrived here from Spiritual Reality Now you were trying to read my webmaster notes at that site. I set up this weblog in order to have a more direct and convenient means of writing updates. One of the other reasons for this weblog is to make it more convenient for you to express your thoughts and comments.
This entry was first posted on Thursday, January 12th, 2006 at 3:09 pm: On theseus at labyrinth