• Current Reading List

    Peaceful Action, Open Heart - Thich Nhat Hanh*** Eat, Pray, Love*** Peaceful Living - Mary Mackenzie(daily reader)*** The Vein of Gold - Julia Cameron (this is a read a chapter a week type book)*** Dubliners - James Joyce*** Nursing: The Philosophy and Science of Caring - Jean Watson*** The Diary of Virginia Woolf. Volume I***
  • Two roads diverged in a yellow wood and I, I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.

Spiritual Pause

During the past month, there was an excruciating period where I felt spiritually bereft. Notice this is past tense, and I feel a need to talk about it, to sort it out, and to be thankful that I am no longer in that place. While I was in that place, a mentor of mine made encouraging comments that it was through spiritual crisis and through questioning that we draw closer to the divine, that we are able to deepen our spiritual connection. What-the-crap-ever. That is how I felt at the time of hearing. I felt separated from my spirituality. I felt alone and despairing. I doubted the existence of anything divine or ‘greater-than’ this human earthly existence. Truly this is not a very happy place to be. For the first time in years, I began to question whether my spiritual beliefs to this point had all been a fruitless attempt to make sense of my life and my world and to provide myself with meaningless hope. Maybe, I thought,  my husband has the right of it…we are born, we live, we die…just cosmic accidents, no greater meaning, that’s it. But that just didn’t make sense to me, just couldn’t quite wrap my head around it.

So I began a dialogue… otherwise known as prayer. (I really get hung up on words and their meanings and weight, and this word has a lot of different – and not-so-nice shadings….I really just don’t like it. If someone else has a better word for prayer, please let me know.) At the time I thought, I may just be talking to myself, but I didn’t like that feeling of despair and I didn’t know what else to do. Initially this dialogue was full of anger, threats, bargaining “if you don’t change this situation, I am not going to have anything to do with you anymore!” – and other childish rants. Through all of it, through all my doubting and ranting, I still felt like I was having a dialogue. Notice that in the word dialogue, there is an understanding that there is communication back and forth.  After a few days of ranting on my side of the dialogue, I began to do just imagine myself in divine presence, returning to imagery that had come to me years ago during a month-long period of fasting and meditation where I first began to explore what it would be like to relate to the feminine divine.  No words, just images and feelings of safety, security, and being loved.

I have purposefully not spoken of the events that triggered this spiritual crisis, because truly those events aren’t that important. It could have been anything really. I was not trusting, I was doubting, I was fearful of the future. So I spent of lot of time and energy trying to control outcomes and I didn’t get the outcomes I wanted. It was that simple. Finally after several weeks of this process I have discussed above, I felt ready to let go and let her back into my life fully. To give myself over to trust….and once again my life changed. Just as quickly as that. Something relatively simple and small, but enough for me to feel and know that there is more to this life than the physical and that my understanding of it will always be limited. Ah, but I am great-ful for growth and a return of a deeper connection that was always about my willingness to trust and open my heart and never about the absence of the divine.

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One Response

  1. when I lose the Connection, it hurts more than anything else. Back to the time when one had no purpose, lacked vision, didn’t have a firm base from which to act upon. When that ‘link’ goes blank, all I want to do is withdraw from the world; from work, from friends, from the internet … and just wait it out. Wait for that spiritual divine to re-enter the being. Yes, I fully appreciate what you write here; I have experienced that bereftment many many times. Less frequently these days, but it still does happen.

    blessings on the road from a fellow pilgrim,

    ggw

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