I follow a spiritual path. A lot of people say this but what does it mean? Define “Spiritual”. Define “Path”.
Spiritual is a word that is almost impossible to define in a way that is universally meaningful. Most people define it in their own subjective way. For some the word “spiritual” will always convey something positive. For some it will always have supernatural connotations which they may perceive as either good or bad. Others will always think of “spiritual” in a negative sense and may think of it as being something unreal, false or delusional.
For me “spiritual” means having an awareness of the deeper realities of the universe and trying to understand and work with these realities in a practical way that makes life more fulfilling and perhaps more consequential. The deeper realities I speak of might be described best by quantum mechanics or sciences and mathematics yet to be discovered. On the other hand these same realities might have already been understood or at least glimpsed in various religions, philosophies and metaphysics of present and past times.
At it’s simplest level perhaps being spiritual is simply an awareness or feeling that there is more to the world than we know or can explain; coupled with a desire to find out more about it. The desire to find out more is where the word “path” comes in.
The path is simply the route we take through life. Everybody takes a path of some kind through life. Some walk blindly and without any particular aim while others are much more deliberate in the route they take through life. Those with a “spiritual” disposition will tend to choose a route or path which they believe will bring them closer to understanding the realities of the universe. The truth is that nobody has a map. Nobody knows the most direct path to enlightenment (although some claim to). In reality we are all orienteering. We are all making our best guesses. Some people who don’t consider themselves spiritual at all may actually be on a much more direct path than some of us who do think of ourselves as spiritual. We just don’t know.
Sometimes however when going for a walk through the woods, getting from “A” to “B” is not the most important thing. It is the journey itself that is most important and the lessons and experiences one gains while travelling.
My path is a personal one and it has many themes. Harmony is important but “learning” is key. I am a Satanist; but my path is not one religion… I have also been a Christian, A Buddhist, a Taoist, A Pagan and I value the lessons I have learned from all of those religions and philosophies. Satanism describes the stage I am at now and I feel it is a philosophy with huge untapped potential to explore. It is the name of the street I am walking along now. I have no idea where this street will lead me or if there are other streets I will feel called to explore. For now though it is an exciting and challenging part of my personal path, my personal journey…
What seems most important to me though is to learn all we can on our journey whatever path we tale. There are lessons at every turn along the way and amazing things to experience. Life itself would seem a bit pointless if we didn’t absorb and reflect on all the sights and experiences along the way. And if we don’t like the path we are on it is always possible to take the next turning in the road or even carve out a new path for ourselves.