The sacred is all around you, and no one can stop you from touching the transcendent or drinking from the sacred stream. No religious organization has yet captured God or imprisoned the sacred within the walls of a church building. -David Elkins
When we embrace a positive shift in our individual consciousness toward spirituality or the sacred, it has a quantum effect on humanity’s collective spirit. Spiritual mystic, John O’Donohue puts it this way: “Once you start to awaken, nothing or no one can ever claim you again, pull you back into old patterns. Once you start to awaken, you know how precious your time here-on earth, in this body-is. You are no longer willing to squander your essence on undertakings that do not nourish your true self; your patience grows thin with tired talk and dead language. When [spirituality comes alive], when it awakens anew, you begin to inherit your true life, the one you were meant for.”
Spirituality can be compared to gardening in that gardening not only involves planting a wide variety of flowers or growing a variety of produce, but also entails continually removing all foreign matter that might choke the seedling to death, or disrupt plant growth and distort development.
As plants mature, they occasionally need to be pruned. Pruning helps plants maintain their health and vigor. Pruning involves removing broken, diseased, or dead branches. The primary benefit of pruning is to promote healthy growth. Likewise, in order for my spirituality to be fully awakened in all its fullness, it has to be subjected to pruning, which means allowing others to inform my spiritual reality.
Spirituality thrives when it is allowed to exist within the context of healthy dialogue and critical inquiry. This is important because without the illuminating collective influence of blended consciousness, spirituality becomes isolated, and reduced to a weapon of judgment, interference, and intolerance. That is, unless our spiritual realities come into contact with one another in an attitude of openness and humility, spirituality will inevitably devolve into a sacrosanct set of ideals used to dominate and control the conscience and lives of others.
Embracing the sacred; therefore, is the disposition of the heart that moves us towards wholeness, relatedness, non-judgment, non-interference, tolerance, and connectedness with our fellow human beings. Ultimately, spirituality is about seeking and awakening to the wonders of life and experiencing the love of people.
This post is an excerpt taken from chapter six [Making Meaning of Spirituality] in the book Awakening Humanity’s Collective Spirit by Josiah Harry.