The one spiritual practice that will transform your life
Most of us desire peace and happiness, if not spiritual awakening. Many traditions urge that we become the Witness, so that we can see our thoughts and feelings but know that we are not those things—we are instead the part of us that is observing those temporary states. Yet, too often, we bypass feeling, and in so doing abandon the part us that needs loving attention.
Unfortunately, we’re not taught how to handle difficult emotions—pain, grief, anger. We avoid them, push them away. It’s easy to believe we are victims – of circumstance, of others. Then, when we need help, we seek fixing, as in “please make this feeling go away.” But, when we avoid our feelings, we are not able to loosen their grip and be free of them. They grow more intense, demand our attention. We build an altar to avoidance, creating an ego identity out of not feeling, and not loving ourselves.
We are all capable of mastery, when we rise to challenge of being with, and loving ourselves.
So, if you only do one spiritual practice every day for the rest of your life, make it this:
Sit with yourself, first for five minutes, then longer over time. Just allow yourself to feel whatever you feel at that moment, be it messiness or wondrousness, pain, love or confusion. Don’t judge yourself. Notice whatever arises—as in, “wow am I so angry/sad/upset.” Then, honour yourself. Affirm that you are consciousness, pure and perfect, having a human experience, and love yourself for having the courage to just be.
Transformation awaits when you lovingly allow the ripples of the smaller self to make way for vast ocean that is the bigger self beyond.
*Note: trauma survivors require a different approach.