"You have to grow from the inside out. None can teach you, none can make you spiritual. There is no other teacher but your own soul".
What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the word "Spirituality" or "Spiritual", you might think that conceivably, it has something to do with God, right! which is partly correct but to me, believing and not believing in God is entirely a personal affair, and I do not intend to touch that chord today. Also we know, that despite having a lot in common, spirituality is different from religion, rather a much broader concept. But quite like religion, spirituality also aims to establish a deeper connection with the "divine" and that is, our "divine self", a.k.a our "soul". Let us first look at the very basic definition of spirituality, something which you would find on Google (see I saved you a search here):
The above definition implies that a spiritual person should not be much concerned with the material or the physical aspects of life, besides should refrain from any kind of worldly pleasures. However, what if we have ambitions on our mind and at the same time also want to attain spirituality? considering the fact that not all of us want to become sages or holy men who have given up on all the materialistic comforts of life, let alone going into a trance like Shamans in order to connect with the spirits of the outside world, which can be the apex of spirituality but not all are born with such enhanced abilities. So how is spirituality relevant to people like you and me? ordinary men and women who simply aims for a successful, peaceful and a happy life. To understand that better, let's find out, who a spiritual person is.
A Spiritual person is someone who is:
1) Peace loving and compassionate : Intentions play a very important role in a spiritual person's life. Humans are ruled by emotions and have often got played by them. A Spiritual person is well aware of this fact and keeps their intentions and expectations at check, they believe in and reflect love, compassion and peace from their behavior.
2) Believes in the Supreme or Divine : Spiritually awakened person is in constant touch with his/her soul, and works in unison with their divine self.
3) Wants to be happy and see happiness around them : A Spiritual person always encourages a peaceful and a supportive environment around them, they tend to work in harmony with the people around them and never lose control.
4) Aware of the human shortcomings and is capable of letting go: They accept the fact that they are humans and have certain limitations, they cannot control the external environment, and hence try to be earn inner peace by being patient.
5) Draw inspiration from small things in life : They are strong believers of life and know that it is a precious gift, they are always grateful for what they have and value even the smallest moments of laughter and happiness. They try to make the most of the present.
6) Humble and Kind: You would seldom see a spiritual person with superficial emotions, these people are deeply connected with their soul and hear the voice of their divine within. They are empathetic of others' pain and sufferings.
7) They are not afraid of being alone: Solitude or the time alone plays an important role in their lives, it helps them reconnect with their inner self and gives them perspective, clarity of thought and vision.
8) Lover of Nature: A spiritual person is often motivated by nature and tends towards it.
Based upon the following observations, we can define Spirituality as, "a process that helps us establishing a deeper understanding of our inner self and help us reconnect with it, it is the awakening of our soul and merging our purpose with it, allowing it to guide us through the journey of life".
After touching the tip of the iceberg and knowing the iota of what spirituality is, let's get down to business, i.e The Benefits of Spirituality :
1. Spirituality at Workplace : Achieving organisational effectiveness via various practices that reduces the stress level of the employees are gaining momentum and therefore many institutions are encouraging the miscellaneous tools of spirituality like yoga, meditation and spiritual healing.
2. Benefits during Sickness or Illness: In a study of "The perceived benefits of religious and spiritual coping among older adults living with HIV/AIDS" by Karolynn Siegel and Eric W. Schrimshaw it has been observed that, the spiritual beliefs and practices offers strength, empowerment and control, eases the emotional burden of illness, offers spiritual support through a personal relationship with God, facilitates meaning and acceptance of illness, helps preserve health, relieves the fear and uncertainty of death.
3. Spirituality helps us maintain our sanity: With in-numerous external factors affecting our mental health on the daily basis, spirituality works as a detox. It has been proven beneficial in various psycho therapies and is helpful in retaining our most self controlled self.
4. Lowers the risk of depression: It has been observed that a spiritual person is more resilient and whenever knocked down in life makes a faster and a better come back.
5. Leads to overall well being and happiness: This has already been stated and is in fact true that a spiritual mind leads to a happier and a more satisfied life in comparison to others.
How to increase our spiritual awakening:
- Pray everyday : The Power of prayers is incredible, whatever time of the day is convenient, take a few minutes off and say, "Thank you" to the almighty. Pray for yourself and for the well being of your loved ones.
- Be Grateful : Show gratitude for even the smallest achievement in life.
- Help others: By helping someone in need, we not just help the other person but also increase our self worth.
- Give Nature a chance: Spend sometime in nature. Air, Water, Woods etc. they all are the natural healers and switches on the button of our spiritual mind.
- Practice Yoga and Meditation : It has been proven that Yoga helps in developing physical and spiritual wellness and is a very effective tool in attaining spirituality. Meditation too, has been proven effective in unwinding the body from stress and getting spiritually connected with our soul.
A spiritually awakened mind carries within itself the powerhouse of wisdom, and can achieve almost anything it wants, but with utmost peace and sanity intact.
Be Spiritual! Be Happy!