Spirituality is a lot about loving thoughts, loving feelings, compassion and right action at the right time.
Before getting into spirituality I had a party-going hedonistic lifestyle. I didn’t care that much about my own wellbeing or the wellbeing of others, and considered myself as having a smattering of metropolitan culture. Discovering spirituality, my thinking and feeling changed a lot.
The nightlife lifestyle had covered up anger and sadness as I thought I was having fun, and didn’t give attention to the feelings that were bubbling under the surface. Through a crisis and therapies I went through a process of learning to love and appreciate myself as I worked through the emotions. I started to love and appreciate others as well. I practiced forgiveness. I was healing. My heart centre opened up a bit.
I didn’t know much about spirituality, I didn’t need to as I was doing the essentials anyway. I was becoming happier and happier, more and more excited about life and healthier too.
I started to learn about different approaches to spirituality. Though I have since concluded that life, the universe and everything goes on the way it does no matter what people believe about spirituality. I came across some spiritual approaches that were incomplete, some were half-baked, and some were completely whacko. (Being able to use your third-eye and other centres to tune in and assess belief systems and concepts is really useful, and also good for spotting fake news.)
I have realized that to understand and know fully how things happen in creation requires a great deal of knowledge which needs to be deeply understood. Also it helps to have many, many lifetimes of experience for the soul to learn what life is about and what God is all about.
Even with incomplete knowledge it is still possible to use some basics, such as using thoughts to (partially) create your reality, and use the knowledge that energy follows thought, so using visualization and affirmations can be useful in life.
Nowadays, with regards to understanding spirituality I tend to think of it like layers of an onion. There are depths and layers to spiritual knowledge, so what you believe one year can change throughout the years as depth of understanding grows, and life is lived to build experience, and building experience deepens understanding.
Now the basics again: thinking loving thoughts, and feeling loving feelings. And forgiveness. Is that possible to do about everyone? Is it possible to do about everything?
You might have a list of people and events or groups that you feel are beyond loving and who should be damned forever and sent into a black hole.
I was given a lesson in this in the nineties when I drove a Tibetan lama from Oxford to London. I didn’t know much history and asked him how he came to the West. He explained that he and the other monks fled their monastery. He told me that the Chinese army attacked and shot at the monks as they crossed a river. Out of 300 monks, 6 made it across into India. What amazed me was that he didn’t hold a grudge or any animosity and was at peace with what had happened.
This was and still is a big lesson for me: to be able to forgive everyone.
Through spiritual knowledge I have a sense of why to forgive. I know that people have many lifetimes. When we have lives, what we have as a life is determined by our karma so we have experiences to balance out our karma for our soul to learn through experience. First we have one experience and then another in a future lifetime to balance out the experience in the earlier life. The law of opposites can be operating, so we can have a light filled life of doing caring actions, and this is balanced by a darker life where are action are negative. Then a future lifetime can be light filled again.
In dark lives, we get tested. The Dark Lodge are interested in us when we have lives where we lean to the dark. The Dark Lodge are essentially testers. They offer us a life where we can have glamour, power over others, easy wealth and prestige, and other people have to pay the price. Sometimes the lifestyle comes through exploiting creatures or the earth.
In one life we might feel that we don’t want to act, think or live in a negative way anymore. We have had enough, we are saturated in negative experiences (this is the law of saturation). Or we might decide that’s it, no more of the dark life, and it is yes to more light, love and peace. A caveat to this is that sometimes dark and tyranny needs to be fought against as the most loving option. It depends on what you are fighting for. (There is an energy, a Great Ray called Harmony through Conflict that is worth researching, and in Meher Baba’s Discourses there is information on conflict and right action.) What is right depends on your take on spirituality.
Something else that influences me is the fact that people are souls that have dark and light incarnations, and that we all belong to the same Oversoul, so at a soul level we are connected. For me, this might mean we can forgive people who we have a big emotional charge about. We can start to think loving thoughts about them, and feel love and peace towards them.
Having been through this myself and having helped others go through their own personal journey of forgiveness with its downs and ups, I feel it is important to work through the emotions around whatever needs to be forgiven before reaching peace through forgiveness. Otherwise the emotional energy will try another route to express itself and this can have a negative effect on oneself and one’s life.
After the forgiveness can come the feeling and sending of positive love and thoughts.
This is definitely a useful exercise in our topsy-turvy, emotionally charged world. You might like to make a list of people in the world, close by or geographically distant who really trigger your emotions. You might like to try forgiving these people as we are all connected on a soul level. (As a matter of interest, hate and anger towards someone is also a powerful way of creating a cording to them, and energy can flow both ways through the cording. Forgiveness can dissolve the cording, while love can create a positive cording.)