Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Spiritual Journey...What Is Real And What Is Imaginary?

Here's another reading from the Tao.

Writings about the Tao are purposefully obscure.

Why? Because the writers cherish Tao.
The path is difficult to ensure worthiness.
The lazy look elsewhere,
The persevering find riches.

Today's commentary states, "The writers of the Tao only want knowledge of the Tao to go to those who will appreciate it. They do not want to pollute Tao by exposing it to the mildly curious. The secrets of life are already written repeatedly in all the holy books. They are only secrets because we do not take the time to truly read".

Many people, including me, are always searching for something but they often don't know what it is that they are searching for. Some type of inner voice is always calling them to what one friend calls "the distant shore". We may feel there's a void within us that is a kind of "inner ocean". We don't know what's on the other side but still we have a longing to go there. Our lives are restless and we may be nomadic in the sense that we are always on a journey even if our physical geography rarely changes. I think there are many people like this.

My musical hero, Jerry Garcia of the Grateful Dead, once said something to the effect that he was intrigued by the statistics that stated there were many mentally ill people walking around in public who seemed reasonably happy and content. This makes me think about all the people living their lives who could care less about spiritual journeys, inner landscapes, finding themselves, self improvement, or whether or not there is a God. Many happy and fulfilled people could care less about these things. They feel that nothing is lacking in their lives from the absence of "meaning" found in what others call the "spiritual journey". It makes me wonder sometimes if the "spiritual journey" is real or imaginary or if the "path that is difficult to ensure worthiness" is a path at all. What is real and what is imaginary? Honestly, I don't know. Is there an inner voice that calls me forward or is this "voice" a figment of my own imagination? It is impossible to know what is real and true in matters of the Spirit. Spiritual people are often very troubled and unspiritual people can be very happy. Some live in faith, some in doubt, and others seem to live in a kind of blissful ignorance that I sometime envy.

1 comment:

Ziindo said...

I just want to say, as a spiritual person on a guided path, that it is possible to know what is real and true in matters of the Spirit. The inner voice on the distant shore is the Spirit, calling us home. If you can hear that voice, then you are blessed, because most are so deep in the illusion that the sound of that voice is lost beneath layers of noise. If you begin to think that the voice is imaginary, then it will slowly begin to fade away. It is calling because it has hope that you will answer the call, and the more you listen to the voice, the stronger it will become. Eventually, it will become strong enough to ignite your heart with Love, and wreathe your mind in Wisdom.

The path is not difficult to ensure worthiness, it is difficult because we humans have strayed so far from it. Now, in order to get back on the true path, we have a considerable amount of brush to hack through and mud to tromp through. Some of it may even seem impassable, but we can get through if we learn to trust the voice of our Spirit, and our guides who will present themselves when the time is right. Many folks who are on a spiritual journey can be troubled. Sometimes folks making this voyage have to weather pretty violent storms, and it can be very difficult at times. And, of course, there are people on no spiritual path whatsoever who are perfectly content. This is beautiful, and they are in the right place at the moment. No person is really any better for being where they are. Every soul is exactly where they need to be to learn the lessons they need to learn at the time. If one feels called to follow the voice across the waters, then it will definitely lead them to a place of illumination beyond conscious imagination, but it may take a strong will, and a lot of work, and it is virtually impossible to get there without guidance. It is a journey we will all eventually make at some point. It is our journey back to the source. I hope this has shed a little light on the subject, and I hope that you decide to follow the voice from distant shores. It is a beautiful journey that never stops unfolding. But, of course, it is up to you. As the axiom goes, follow your heart. Best wishes, fellow traveler. May the true light illuminate your path, and the wind of the Spirit fill your sails.