By Will Edwards
In a world geared toward excess, it can be challenging to achieve balance in our spiritual lives – not to mention the rest of our lives. However, an unbalanced spiritual life has the potential to seep disharmony into the other areas of our lives, no matter how ordered they may be initially.
How do spiritual practices become unbalanced? When you spend either too little or too much time engaged in spiritual pursuits.
Here’s a common example: If you spent a large portion of your life disconnected from your spiritual self, you might one day realize that you feel empty and aimless, and begin exploring your spiritual side through meditation or other activities that enhance your spiritual awareness. This is a good thing, but it’s very easy to get swept away with it. You start feeling so good that your thirst for spiritual knowledge takes over the rest of your life. Suddenly you’re neglecting your friends and family and spending all of your free time reading, meditating or attending spiritual classes. Obviously, this can cause major problems if it continues long enough.
Achieving spiritual balance is easy if you follow a few simple steps:
1) Realize that the journey is the goal. One of the reasons people get swept away by their spiritual practices is because they feel an urgent need to “get there” – the point where they’ll feel content and sated spiritually. However, a true spiritual seeker will NEVER reach the “end” of the journey! The whole point is to engage in a lifelong process of growth and development. Keeping this in mind can help you feel better about slowing down, because there’s nothing to hurry toward – you’re already there, smack-dab in the middle of the process, which is exactly where you want to be!
2) Spiritual knowledge alone isn’t enough. As good as it can feel to finally be connected to your spiritual self, you also need to strengthen and consistently reinforce the other connections in your life. Be sure to spend time with your loved ones and form friendships outside of your spiritual circle. You may worry that you don’t have anything in common with them if they don’t share your spiritual beliefs, but you’ll find a lot of similarities if you take the time to look!
3) Less is more. Rather than trying to absorb large quantities of spiritual knowledge in a short period of time, make it a point to start with bite-sized pieces. Enjoy spiritual wisdom and insights as though they were nuggets of the most savory food you’ve ever tasted. Let them linger on your tongue (in your mind and spirit), and take your time ingesting them. Just like eating a meal, you’ll enjoy the knowledge you gain so much more if you take your time absorbing it rather than gobbling it down so fast that you can’t even taste it!
The longer you stay on a spiritual path, the more relaxed and balanced you will become with it, but in the meantime these quick tips should help you to keep balance between your spiritual self and the rest of your life.
Will Edwards is a published author and Founder of White Dove Books.