On a recent trip to California I witnessed myself trying to find the different meanings and/or perspectives to spirituality. There was so much going on through the different terrains, inside and outside of the car ride. Sitting in the backseat, every so often, I would ask my companions different things. I asked one of my friends what his definition of spirituality was and he answered, “Intentionally living in the moment. Bringing awareness and focus to our essence. My best friend’s answer was: “My relationship with God and all other higher power beings.”
There is no right or wrong answer to the definition of spirituality. It is a personal belief. There is something larger than our selves but it is definitely unique to our individuality. Is it the sense and acceptance of allowing spirit to lead? Is it the releasing to something greater than ourselves? Is it the soul parts of ourselves? Does it change depending on the circumstances? The questions are endless!
Just today, sitting with my friends back home drinking tea staring at the gorgeous scenery of our pond, my friend said, “Having radical faith and trust is not for sissies.” I believe that one statement holds the true meaning of spiritual growth and allowance. Spirituality is about the unconditional trust in that which we cannot see. The moment we let love replace the fear of the unknown I think we find the Divine holding space.
I find that one of the greatest books I’ve ever read is Anam Cara, by John O’Donohue. This book was a gift into my life when I was going through some of the hardest and darkest moments. It arrived in a box by mistake with some other books I had ordered from the Internet. There is an incredible passage that he writes that defines my belief in poetic terms:
“…inner movement makes us aware of the eternity that hides behind the outer façade of our lives. Deep within every life, no matter how dull or ineffectual it may seem from the outside, there is something eternal happening. This is the secret way that change and possibility conspire with growth.”
And this is the way I hold to my faith when I am having a difficult time waiting for something to happen. I go deep within me to find Spirit. It is there that I find that “eternal happening.” There are those moments that my impatience becomes too much for me because I ask for something and expect the result immediately. But the lesson in spiritual growth is allowance. There is no time expand or limit to our prayers. We place those restrictions in our asking. There is no quick-fix solution. We interpret the answers however we want.
I believe spirituality is about letting those magic-mystical moments enter and exist without obstruction while allowing the universe to be the only thing in control. This sense of allowance is part of having the courage to accept things as they are, not as we want them to be. Living a life of faith requires the release of all control. It requires that we leap into the unknown without fear. Just like my friend said…”it isn’t for sissies!” But, it is one way of living a deep authentic life of truth and grace.
“Faith is walking face-first and full-speed into the dark. If we truly knew all the answers in advance as to the meaning of life and the nature of God and the destiny of our souls, our belief would not be a leap of faith and it would not be a courageous act of humanity; it would just be… a prudent insurance policy.”- Elizabeth Gilbert
Photo Credit: mediumsworld.wordpress.com
About the Author: Millie A. Mestril
After raising six children, working in the corporate world, and being part of a relationship for eighteen years, I found that happiness was not consistent in my world. I left the business world, ended a relationship that was deteriorating and headed to the mountains. My best friend and I bought a small motel in the middle of gorgeous country and began the greatest journey. What started as a visit to Asheville in May of 2010 became a permanent home for us. Now with only one teenager at home, I am able to be part of a wonderful world of meeting people from all walks of life. We’ve transformed an old gem of a place into a sweet and quaint oasis for others to find peace. To those looking into our lives it seems we saved Peaceful Quest Retreats, but the reality is that this place saved us. Every day brings joy, inspiration and a zest for life I never knew existed. The lessons have not always been easy but the ride has been scenic and delightful. I can’t imagine ever returning to a life that was not authentic to my spirit. ~ Millie A. Mestril