sign spiritual walk at the wall

There was a time in my life that “if it felt good, it WAS good, and if it felt bad, it WAS bad.”  I guess I was living like a member of another species!

What I’ve learned over time is what feels bad is sometimes good, and what feels good is sometimes bad.  This puts a whole new spin on things.  Now I have to discern what’s actually happening, regardless of how it feels.

This is probably what Pema Chodron, the great Buddhist nun, means when she says “lean into the sharp object.”  It’s counterintuitive to accept pain as part of life.  We spend a lot of energy trying to avoid it through various addictions and distractions. We desperately hope that something outside ourselves will save us from pain.  The truth… Nothing saves us from pain.  Our only choice is to get through it quickly through acceptance, or slowly through obfuscation and suffering.  The latter strategy results in blaming others and Life itself for our pain.

 The grace of acceptance looks like giving up, but it is actually the Path of the Spiritual Warrior.  There are times to fight, but they are much rarer than we think.  If we fight to avoid pain, it will accumulate and will be waiting around the corner in another form.

As I’ve come to this realization I can breathe.  I don’t feel like a cornered animal living on adrenalin.  I don’t think anyone is making a stained glass window in my image any time soon!  I’m just grateful to embrace a truth that lets me rest.

 With love, Rosanne


The Roadmap and the Journey

IndicazioneI’ve been asked a number of times about the difference between religion and spirituality.  Since there are increasing numbers of people that claim to be spiritual, but not religious, it’s a valid question.

The way I think about this is that religion is a road map, a set of directions that keeps us on course, but that spiritual consciousness is the evolving journey.  We can get preoccupied with the road map and forget we are on a journey.  This, unfortunately, is the hypocrisy that we see in some religious practices.

The fact is that spiritual awareness is the unfolding journey we go through in a lifetime.  It’s the growing realization that we are all ascending to a view of life that is less personal and more universal, Oneness.  Material life is a stage in that evolution.  Sometimes holding too tightly to the road map can make us forget that there is a journey under way.

The great tenor, Luciano Pavarotti, described his experience of singing as preparing the instrument through years of practice, and then “falling backwards into the arms of God” and allowing the voice to come through him, not from him.  This is a perfect description of what we each must learn to do.  If you call trusting Universal Consciousness as trusting God, Allah, Jehovah, Natural Order or whatever name you assign to It,  surrender without resistance is what paves the way to the journey, the Spiritual Path.

This doesn’t mean that religious practice isn’t valuable.  Having a roadmap, a practice, can help us stay on the road.  But make no mistake, reading the map isn’t taking the journey.  In this day of rapid transformation, too much time contemplating the next step can result in being left behind.

So with our boots on the ground, let us be the well-tuned instruments that manifest the potential which is waiting to be brought to Earth, each in our own time and each in our own fashion.  No time to lose.

With love,  Rosanne