Awakin.org

Waking up to Wisdom
In Stillness and Community

To Be On A Spiritual Path

--by Jan Phillips (Mar 03, 2014)


"To be on a spiritual path means to live mindfully, paying attention to the signs along the road and being conscious of our body — the vehicle we are traveling in — and of the needs and safety of others on the journey.

"To be on a spiritual path means to look inward as often as outward, knowing that the externals of our lives are reflections of our thoughts and words, manifestations of that which we are imagining and energizing into being with the fuel of our passion.

"To be on a spiritual path means to use the rearview mirror to be sure that the path behind is clear of debris and that we do not obstruct another's journey with clutter of our own. It means making peace with our past, knowing our future contains it, and summoning the courage it takes to acknowledge, forgive, and release whatever we have clung to that impedes our movement.

"To be on a spiritual path is to take responsibility for creating our own creed, based on our commitments, and to respect the rights of others to do the same. It also means to reflect anew on what beliefs we've inherited to be sure they are compatible with our wisdom and compassion.

"To be on a spiritual path is to embrace the mystical paradox that while we are singular, physical beings on this journey, we are also profoundly connected to one another, animated and sustained by the same vast Spirit that abides in the star, the petal of an iris, the howl of the wolf. […]

"To be on a spiritual path, it is necessary to forgive yourself for wrong turns, for failing to yield, for driving under the influence of others. These are minor and forgivable infractions. The more important rules of this road are to be attentive, to notice when you stray, and to get back on the path as soon as possible.

"We could all use a road map for the journey inward, a guide away from the crowded thoroughfare to the quiet path of our own true calling; a reminder that it is not the destination, but the journey, that is important. The fourteenth-century Italian saint Catherine of Siena once wrote, 'All the way to heaven is heaven.' Perhaps this is roadmap enough — this one stark line enough to keep us walking, reminding us that the wind we feel on the back of our necks is nothing less than the breath of God.

- Jan Phillips, from "Finding the On-Ramp to Your Spiritual Path: A Road Map to Joy and Rejuvenation"


Add Your Reflection:

Send me an email when another comment is posted on this passage.
Name: Email:

38 Previous Reflections:

 
On May 6, 2014 Marisa Harnadh wrote:
... at the break of a sweat
mid stream breaths of fire
the thumping of a s/heArt
Come
flashing visions of sacred moments 
of HuMans beComing
ArcAngels and God-desses
 
A gape suspended in gasp
IS the deafening Silence
of 
One-ness with no thing
withIN every thing
IS
effervescent Stillness
of The Presence...
... that other's call
 
God.
 

1 reply: Lfm | Post Your Reply
On Mar 5, 2014 Harsh wrote:

 Wow. I am still thinking about the line. "It is looking in the rear view mirror that we haven't left any clutter behind, any obstruction for someone else. To leave the past behind and be sure that it will be there in future." This translates for me to surrender, awareness, being in the present, compassion, love.



1 reply: Aj | Post Your Reply
On Mar 5, 2014 Hillary Tran wrote:

 To me, to be on a spiritual path is to consciously and continuously shed and let go of what is not our true identity. We have created for ourselves so many hats to wear, so many identities, most of them practical, but limited and 3D :-)

The day we come around and remember, really remember, our true identity__each of us a spark of Divine light__we'll realize that there is nothing out there to gain, to acquire, to accumulate, or to achieve, both materially and spiritually.

All that is left for us to do after that day of "remembering" is to consciously and continuously shed and let go of all the layers of conditioning we have believed and acquired, and have been holding on as part of our identity, for many many incarnations.

Until all that remains is pure Light! :-)



On Mar 4, 2014 Rekha wrote:

I feel that to be able to see what's special in every experience, one needs to remove oneself as the doer and see the event as an amazing synchrony of cause and effect, as well as the Act of the Spirit which animates and sustains us. Every time I am able to detach myself,  neither feeling proud of myself for good things or cursing myself for the bad,  I feel like an unnecessary burden has been lifted off my system. I feel liberated in the moment. I also feel that to see a clutter free path in the rear view mirror, we can start acting today, because the past is gone and all you can do about it is forget and forgive as well learn the required lessons and apply them to today's actions.A sangha, such as this, is surely a helpful place to deepen any spiritual practice.



On Mar 4, 2014 Prakash Narasimhaiya wrote:

 For me Spiritual path is ......" Do good to everyone. if not,  keep silent. Don't do bad to anyone.  All for good,  bad for nothing.   Disparity and Dispassion are the two ways for simple and spiritual life."



On Mar 4, 2014 SKD wrote:

"It is a lesson we all need-to let alone the things that do not concern us.  He has OTHER WAYS for OTHERS to follow Him; all DO NOT go by the SAME PATH.  It is for each of us to learn the path by which He requires us to follow Him, and then TO FOLLOW HiM in that path."  
Saint Katherine Drexel 
 Catholic Digest's Quiet Moment from yesterday.  Amen Saint Katherine!  Please pray for us.



On Mar 4, 2014 Nicole Alexander wrote:

 For me at the moment being on a spiritual path means seeing others as mirrors and everything as an opportunity to learn and open. This is a stark contrast to blaming and feeling victimized which was my old pattern. The old pattern still creeps in every now and again, especially with those I am close to so I keep being gentle with myself and choosing to open.



On Mar 4, 2014 Troy best wrote:

 Seeing the perfection in every moment ,and being grateful   



On Mar 4, 2014 Sona wrote:

Beautiful post. Thank you.
To me, being on a spiritual path is to be happy at all times:)
We can be happy at all times only when we are one with everyone and everything. 



On Mar 4, 2014 Alison Strickland wrote:

 Right now being on a spiritual path means reading and appreciating these open hearted soulful responses. They stand in stark contrast to the toxic hateful comments I've stumbled upon on the internet where people seem to find pleasure in attacking others beliefs. When I read a political article, I rarely go near the comments because it's certain that poisonous responses will follow. It's so satisfying find a site where hearts and minds stay open. And yes, Jan Phillips is a wonderful writer. Check out her other books. They're equally amazing.



On Mar 4, 2014 Mish wrote:

 Wow!  Brilliant piece of writing!  Just so brilliant!!!  
To me, one word is being on the spiritual path..... L O V E......in thought, word & deed.....always/often.
so appreciate this piece of writing .  Thank you.  Will share it.



On Mar 3, 2014 Sydney wrote:

This is amazing!! So well written.



On Mar 1, 2014 david doane wrote:

 For me, there is not much to add to what the author says about being on the spiritual path.  I appreciate the road map and guidelines that Jan Phillips offers.  For me, the spiritual path definitely means finding, allowing, and trusting one's own truth rather than accepting someone's else's truth.  In hindsight, I think the 'wind' for me was the hand of a friend who asked me if I would like to be part of a group about spirituality that has contributed much over the years to my opening up and developing my spiritual path and awareness.  That hand was more greatly special than I ever anticipated.  I never thought of that hand as the hand of God before, but I guess it was, since we are each and all expressions and manifestations of that Infinite Force that we call God.  I develop the ability to see what's special in every experience by learning that every experience is special, unique, and sacred, and it's for me to find and allow the sacredness that i  See full.

 For me, there is not much to add to what the author says about being on the spiritual path.  I appreciate the road map and guidelines that Jan Phillips offers.  For me, the spiritual path definitely means finding, allowing, and trusting one's own truth rather than accepting someone's else's truth.  In hindsight, I think the 'wind' for me was the hand of a friend who asked me if I would like to be part of a group about spirituality that has contributed much over the years to my opening up and developing my spiritual path and awareness.  That hand was more greatly special than I ever anticipated.  I never thought of that hand as the hand of God before, but I guess it was, since we are each and all expressions and manifestations of that Infinite Force that we call God.  I develop the ability to see what's special in every experience by learning that every experience is special, unique, and sacred, and it's for me to find and allow the sacredness that is present. 

Hide full comment.

1 reply: Always | Post Your Reply
On Feb 28, 2014 Conrad P Pritscher wrote:

 Being on a spiritual path means to me being on the path I think is right for me at this time. A spiritual path can be my secular living. Secular spirituality seems to be my type of spirituality.A personal story when that wind touched the back of my neck felt greatly special was when I first decided to take an introductory course in meditation at the Zen Buddhist Temple in Ann Arbor Michigan. Before the course, I sat on the floor of my bedroom as though I knew how to meditate, and tears of joy came to my eyes. After over 20 years of meditating, I doubt that I meditate any better now than then. I notice I develop and grow when every moment, regardless of what I am doing, is mindful. Mindfulness and meditation are one as I and the universe are one. .I do not know how to develop the ability to see what is special in every experience except to say I develop more when I notice what I'm noticing as I'm noticing. When I notice "what is" and I accept it peacefully I am more peacefully pa  See full.

 Being on a spiritual path means to me being on the path I think is right for me at this time. A spiritual path can be my secular living. Secular spirituality seems to be my type of spirituality.A personal story when that wind touched the back of my neck felt greatly special was when I first decided to take an introductory course in meditation at the Zen Buddhist Temple in Ann Arbor Michigan. Before the course, I sat on the floor of my bedroom as though I knew how to meditate, and tears of joy came to my eyes. After over 20 years of meditating, I doubt that I meditate any better now than then. I notice I develop and grow when every moment, regardless of what I am doing, is mindful. Mindfulness and meditation are one as I and the universe are one. .I do not know how to develop the ability to see what is special in every experience except to say I develop more when I notice what I'm noticing as I'm noticing. When I notice "what is" and I accept it peacefully I am more peacefully patient. I more frequently grow and and become more peaceful when I know that I do not know. There are many ways to the way. As Lao Tzu said, "The way they can be said is not the way.Thanks for the opportunity to respond. Warm and kind regards to everyone

Hide full comment.