The Spiritual Gym

The spirit index32ual gym is the place where we build peace and faith. We become strong through exercises of integrity. We each have a lifetime membership. Our bodies are our membership cards. We can work out anytime. It’s open 24/7. The more we pump spiritual iron, the greater the weights we can easily lift with our smiles. The more reps we practice, the more enduring our wisdom and compassion will be in adversity.

Spiritual Sweat

When you step into the realm of the gym you may get a whiff of the toxic emotions, the distorted
belief systems, the self-destructive habit patterns that have been clogging your non-physical
pores for years. In the routines of daily life, these patterns were camouflaged by activity. But
here at the gym, they seem glaring. There’s a stench of spiritual sweat that may at times feel
unbearable. However, with your increasing commitment to your workout, you may come to a
wonderful sense of detoxification, of lightening up, of purification, of expansion. With consistent
practice, you will come to experience the sweet aroma of peace, contentment and eagerness that
flows from your authentic efforts in your workout.

Release

Unlike the clenching activities that build physical muscle, release characterizes the spiritual
workout. Rather than contracting a muscle to build its strength, we spend time on the release
circuit letting go. We drop the weights, the resentments, the fears, the frustrations and
embarrassments. We let go of the anger. We open, relax, allow.
This translates into a hefty workout in all our relationships. At its world-class level, it looks like
unconditional love and unwavering compassion. But for those of us beginning to build our “spiceps”
here at the gym, it looks more like releasing our dependencies, compulsions and desires to
control others.

The gym may have some big autographed posters on the wall of the masters with their bulging
auras. As we look with awe at their palpable mastery, we can become elevated to new levels of
relationship with our own souls. The masters can inspire us to believe in our own ability to flow
more and more life, love and joy through our human experience. And then, as we look at the
people in our lives, we bring new vigor to our practice of letting go of grudges, jealousies and
judgments. We let go and let go and let go. Our light is getting stronger and stronger.

The Adversity Room

This is the room no one wants to go into. The machines in here are made of health crises,
insanity, loss of loved ones, addiction. The workout here is fierce and uncompromising. If you
find yourself up against any of the big challenges in life, you have the option of redirecting your
awareness from the physical story line of your problem to the spiritual potential it holds. You f
can bring it into the gym. Here, you have the benefit of the most advanced facilities. This is the
realm where you can become stronger than any pain you may be experiencing.

It’s not until you hit the adversity room that you lift or release the biggest weights the gym has
to offer. As hard as the time spent in this room may be, the potential achievement is of equal
proportion. Here is where you learn to maintain your faith in good while in the midst of
devastation. Here is where you build your link to humor in the midst of tears. Here is where you
maintain the tenderness of your loving heart in the rage of loss.

No one stays in the adversity room forever. The poster on the wall says, “This too shall pass.” By
staying devoted to knowing the divine truth of any situation, you allow that truth to reveal itself
as healing, love, connection, freedom or whatever other form of light needs to break through to
dissolve the apparent conditions of the adversity room. And then suddenly or little by little, you
find yourself back in the sunlit, plant-filled, bustling gym where you get to choose which rhythm
of joy you want to exercise with today.

Working with a personal trainer

The place is enormous. Everyone seems to be doing a completely different form of exercise. The
manuals are piled sky high. Where do you begin? Which workout will take you where you want
to go? Fortunately, there are personal trainers here at the gym and they work at all different levels.
They may take different forms, but you can easily find someone who can help you focus.

Sometimes some gentle guidance is all you need to relax and allow your own inner knowing to
pour through you with new clarity.

Your workouts at the spiritual gym, whichever ones you choose, will lead to results as tangible
as the six-pack you can aspire to by doing abdominal crunches. Your light will get so bright that
you will ignite the light in others. Friends will enjoy basking in your glow. And as you live your
life with more and more creativity, freedom and joy, your generosity of spirit will overflow to
everyone you meet. See you at the gym.

© Rebbie Straubing

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