‘It is not an uncommon thing to meet with people who spend hours of each day doing spiritual exercises and who, in the intervals, display as much spite, prejudice, jealousy, greed, and silliness as the most “unspiritual” of their neighbors.’ – Aldous Huxley. The Divine Within: Selected Writings on Enlightenment
The popularization of the importance of spiritual exercises such as yoga, meditation, and prayer, has resulted in many folks practicing them without embracing spiritual virtues. People think doing these exercises alone will enable alignment with Infinite Mind/God. They are unaware that the exercises cannot enable alignment if not accompanied by spiritual action.
Apostle James noticed an almost similar phenomenon when he wrote, ‘faith without action is dead.’ He observed how early Christians prayed and praised God, yet they never demonstrated their faith by helping the poor. He thus questioned, ‘What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?’
Similarly, several modern folks allocate time for meditation, praise and worship, prayer, and yoga, but fail to demonstrate spirituality through their actions. They then wonder why they seldom experience the Infinite Mind and why their lives seldom change despite performing several spiritual exercises.
Spiritual exercises are dead without action. Although they enable us to access the Infinite Mind within, the access is short-lived. For them to enable permanent access, they must be combined with spiritual actions such as forgiveness, love, humility, compassion, honesty, and so on because these deeds clear the negative energies within hence enabling alignment with the Infinite Mind, which is positive energy.
It’s thus pointless to practice spiritual exercises and still embrace hate, jealousy, pride, self-centeredness, and other negative qualities as most people do today. Modern folks go to the church/mosque/temple to pray/meditate but still display negative qualities in their relationships with other folks. ‘They thoroughly cleanse the outside of the cup, and ignore the inside.’ For this reason, they never achieve higher states of consciousness that allow them to experience the Infinite Mind.
We –the enlightened ones – shouldn’t be among these folks. We must accompany our spiritual exercise with action for us to experience the goodness and greatness of the Infinite Mind.
Thank You for Reading
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Living in Harmony with Nature: The Wisdom of Stoicism
‘If you live in harmony with nature you will never be poor.’ – Seneca
Stoicism was an ancient philosophy that constantly reminded people about the unpredictability of life and the importance of rising above one’s emotions and external conditions. As well, it strived to enlighten people about the importance of accepting whatever happens and living in harmony with nature.
Today, I’ll focus on the stoic teaching of living in harmony with nature because it enables people to reach their full potential and live a fulfilling life.
Living in Harmony with Nature according to Stoicism
‘Let us keep to the way which nature has mapped out for us, and let us not swerve therefrom.’ – Seneca
According to stoicism, nature designed us to flourish because it wants us to attain the full expression of our human potential. It thus planted within us a desire of wanting to become the highest version of ourselves and provided us with everything we need to be our highest self.
For this reason, living in harmony with nature is to strive to reach our highest potential, which can be done by developing our character and perfecting reason. We perfect reason by cultivating wisdom, and we develop character by living a virtuous life through embracing justice/good-heartedness, courage, and self-discipline.
To the stoics, self-discipline meant controlling our emotions and embracing humility and forgiveness. Besides, courage meant acting fearlessly while justice meant fairness and good-heartedness.
The stoics believed anyone who strived to reach her full potential by developing her reasoning faculty and a good character will live a fulfilled life as she will be in harmony with nature.
Studying nature enabled me to realize that every living thing was designed to grow into its full potential. For instance, mangoes are designed to develop into huge trees with several fruits while whales are designed to grow into huge mammals that give birth to live young.
For this reason, I firmly support the Stoics’ idea that we were also designed to live up to our full potential, and I believe we live in harmony with nature by aligning with this design.
As well, I agree that we’ll live a fulfilling life if we develop our character because a good character enables us to establish good relationships, and connect with the right people. Moreover, it enables us to rise above failure and attain prosperity.
Lastly, I support the fact that perfecting our reason leads to a fulfilling life since it results in a positive perception towards life and enables us to make healthy judgments, wise decisions, and perform the right actions.
Hope you enjoyed the wisdom of the stoics. Anyway, besides the idea of living in harmony with nature, I will continue providing you with more powerful stoic teachings in my future articles because I recently discovered that practicing stoicism leads to a happier and peaceful life.
There Is No Specific Formula for Answered Prayer
The internet is filled with spiritual experts who claim to know the right formula for answered prayer. Some of them advise us to pray while kneeling, and others while bowing down. Besides, others claim that we should pray according to God’s will while others urge us to focus on affirmative prayer because it’s more powerful than other forms of prayer.
I used to believe in these ideas, but after studying and meditating on esoteric philosophy for about three years, I realized that all the above ways of praying are just ideas – and not fundamental truths – because there is no reliable evidence that proves their validity. Furthermore, the formulas seldom succeed even after people try them for a long period.
I think people should pray whenever they want, using any formula they want, because there is no specific formula for answered prayer. Many people could have had their prayers constantly answered if there was a specific formula for prayer that ensures answers.
My doubts regarding an assured formula for answered prayer arose after studying the prayers of several ancient religions. I discovered that different religions had a different way of praying, and every religion believed its way of prayer was the best.
For instance, ancient Muslims believed their way of prayer was the best while ancient Christians, who prayed differently, also believed their way of prayer was the best. For this reason, the belief that there is a specific formula for prayer that always works is illusory for it is based on an individual’s religious belief system, which is influenced by how the founders of his religion understood spirituality.
However, despite my argument that there is no specific formula for answered prayer, I believe TRUST ensures an individual’s prayers are answered regardless of what he’s praying for. People who trust with all their mind, soul, and heart that they will get whatever they pray for, often get it even if its against God’s will.
By the way, I don’t believe in the idea of God’s will because no one can understand God’s inner nature, and therefore, one will ever know ‘his’ will. God is unknowable, and whatever we know about God’s inner nature is based on belief systems and assumptions. As the Hermetists put it, ‘any information regarding the inner nature of God, is but the childish efforts of mortal minds to grasp the secret of the Infinite (The Kyabilion –The Three Initiates).’
With that in mind, instead of trying to find the best formula for answered prayer, we must focus on building our trust in The Creator. And if you seldom pray, don’t worry because many atheists have manifested their desires just because they trusted that they will get whatever they want.
Lastly, realize that we are multi-dimensional divine beings that were created in the Creator’s image, and within us is the Creator’s power. A power that serves us only when we TRUST that everything will work in our favor regardless of whether we pray or not.
PEACE BE WITH YOU
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