This is an article on how to find your spiritual flow. In this article there is what I consider to be a really great and useful definition of the word ‘spiritual’. We often use ‘spiritual’ conversationally as if we have a clear idea what it means, but when we check our understanding is often a lot more nebulous. This article on spiritual flow is once again on the topic of flow states in meditation which I will be addressing in great practical depth in my upcoming Enlightened Flow Workshop on the 29th June, with the free introductory talk on Tuesday 17th June . For those of you not in Singapore, don’t worry, the online version will follow 😉
Yours in the spirit of spiritual flow,
This is an article about how to find your spiritual or enlightened flow. So, firstly, what do we mean by spiritual. Oftentimes people use the word like we all know what it means, but actually a sound working definition of what it means to be spiritual can be elusive; so here is one that I find very practical and useful from Nathaniel Branden: “Spiritual means pertaining (or referring to) to consciousness and the development of consciousness”.
From this we can see that to be a spiritual person means being interested in developing your inner or non-material self.
Quite often the spiritual is set up in contrast to materialism. A materialist is someone for whom the material world is of primary importance, in contrast a spiritual person is someone for whom the non-material or inner world of consciousness is of primary importance. This is not to say that a single person cannot have an integrated balance of materialism and spirituality in their life, indeed perhaps this would be the ideal.
So to be a spiritual person means to be interested in developing the inner world of your consciousness, and you yourself can assess how ‘spiritual’ you are by measuring how much effort each day you spend on the development of your consciousness.
Now that we have a definition of spiritual, we can look at what spiritual flow means. To be‘in the spiritual flow’ means to be centered in your consciousness, and allowing your life to unfold around that central inner identity of yourself as a non-physical self within a physical body and experiencing a physical world
Deep spiritual flow or enlightened means to be centred on the experience of consciousness itself, so that as well as distinguishing yourself from your physical body and self, you have also distinguished yourself from the contents of your consciousness as well. You are the centre of pure living awareness and/or consciousness that is the possessor and expereincer of your thoughts, feelings and body.
Four images for spiritual or enlightened flow:
So what might that actually look or feel like? Here are four images for getting a feel for what it is like to be in the spiritual or enlightened flow.
1. Think of your actual or spiritual self as being the parent of the contents of your consciousness – You are dis-identified** with the contents of your consciousness, but holding them with care and love
2. To be the ocean of your consciousness but not the waves or ripples – Your consciousness is like the ocean, your mental experience of thoughts and sensory information are like the waves – be the ocean, not the waves!
3. To be the sky and not the clouds – Experience your consciousness itself as being like a clear open sky, and your senses and thoughts as being like the clouds. Be the open sky, not the clouds!
4. Being the tree and not the leaves – The tree cares for and feeds the leaves but is not destroyed when they fall of in the winter, it lets them fall, stands silent through winter and then re-grows them the next spring. Your consciousness itself is like the tree, your thoughts and senses are like the leaves. Be the tree and not the leaves!
If you want some homework from this article, over the next week or so simply take one of these images each day and use your contemplation of them as a way of starting to experience your own spiritual or enlightened flow.
**Please note the difference between dis-identified and dis-associated from . We aim to be in touch with and aware of our thoughts, emotions and senses whilst being dis-identified with them. To be dis-associated from them would be to be completely out of touch with them, which would invariably lead to psychological issues!