July blog is late because I had doubts about writing it.
Here in a nutshell is what spirituality is and what it is not.
Spirituality is a growing: (a) identity with your immortal soul; (b) appreciation for the highest ideals of all religions; and (c) attunement and love for God (Divinity).
Spirituality is NOT (a) parroting the dogma that you are a sinner; (b) trying to convert everyone to your religion; and/or (c) fearing God.
The effort of spiritual meditative Kriya yoga of Jesus, St Paul, Yogananda, Buddha, etc. is the safest, quickest way to become spiritually attuned.
Spirituality requires that you must work, must seek – as Jesus, Yogananda, Yogiraj, Sadhguru, Buddha, etc. have always suggested. Jesus said, “Seek and ye shall find” (Matthew 7:7, Luke 11:9). Recently, I heard that Yogananda said, “Doubt is a spiritual seeker’s constant companion.” How true.
I grew up as an extreme religious fundamentalist. “How extreme?” you might ask. So extreme that my family did not celebrate Christmas, because my parents were told it started as a pagan festival.
I was addicted and blinded by a fundamentalist religion that forbade doubt. I was taught to never question. I feared God, I tried to convert others to my religion, and I believed I was a sinner.
I also believed that God loved everyone. But, then too, I believed that God would torture unbelievers in hell forever. The more I organized my mind, opened my heart, studied and experienced life, the more troubled I became.
How could I accept this “God”? I mistakenly dared to call Jesus evil. Eventually, I realized that was wrong and found Jesus’ true message. See Ye are gods.
I could no longer overlook or ignore the evangelicals’ many inconsistencies, described in “Something does not make sense,” And so, I searched for other explanations.
I began to study the New Testament in Koine Greek (the language it was written in) and metaphysical yoga. Through this study, I began to see the mission of Jesus very differently. This gave me the confidence to reject the Biblical interpretations I had been taught. I could reject these interpretations because they did not organize my mind nor open my heart.
Doubt (or questioning) is as essential for a spiritual seeker as it is for a scientist. Why? Questioning prevents one from accepting or rejecting concepts blindly. No more robot-like acceptance of evangelical extremism or fundamentalist fantasies.
When I was a teenager, I read that Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) said, “Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.” I immediately loved the quote because it suggested the scientific method. I have used it as a theme in my book, available on Amazon.
Sai Baba said once “It is good to be born into a religion, but not to die in one.” I left (dis!)organized religion behind. I felt like I was coming home to search for higher truths. This has organized my mind and it has opened my heart.
However, in questioning religious dogma, I found out that I needed faith in a method (very different from blind belief). Faith produces results, blind belief is wishful thinking.
Kriya yoga uses a spiritual experimental methodology to search for higher truths. Kriya yoga is ancient and timeless. The metaphysics of yoga together with the practice of Kriya yoga kept me from lapsing into skepticism or nihilism. So many doubters fall into this ditch.
If you want more than religious dogma and theory, I strongly suggest that you practice some type of spiritual method such as the Kriya yoga taught by Jesus, St Paul, Yogananda and others. Progress now, Perfection later.
Friends, do not be afraid or ashamed to doubt concepts/beliefs that do not make sense. Question them. I was never struck by lightning for doing so. Neither was Galileo.
Doubt is necessary for change. But, you must not then stop or stagnate at doubt. Study, test, prove or disprove. This is the scientific method, applicable to both physical and spiritual science.
The Creator desires evolution for His creation, not stagnation. You must then work to replace religious superstition and hate with knowledge and love for you to evolve spiritually.
Progress now (keep studying and practicing) – Perfection later.