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Spiritual Pain vs. Spiritual Healing

This article is about discerning why you have spiritual pain and how to find the path to spiritual healing instead.

What is spiritual pain? Or for that matter, what is spirituality? What is it about us that makes us spiritual beings who long for spiritual healing?

Wouldn’t it just be easier if we were rational individuals able to mentally and emotionally control ourselves and everyone around us? Wouldn't we be most fulfilled if we were strong, powerful and respected? Wouldn’t this give us power? Wouldn’t power provide connection for us? Yes – maybe we should force our power and fight hard so that others pay attention to us and give us what we need. Right?



'Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world.' ~ Arthur Schopenhauer

Isn’t this quote so true? We are all so self-consumed that we forget the essence of what it is that we were actually meant to be ~ connected. This connection involves all things and all people that we encounter in our lives.

Spiritual pain becomes real when we lose our sense of connectedness. In order to be whole, to heal ourselves completely, body-mind-soul it is essential that we come to understand this concept of connection. It is only then that we can have spiritual healing.

If you are a spiritual seeker, read on my friend!

What is Spirituality Exactly?

When we look closely at what is spirituality, we usually think of religion, and what we were taught according to the great faiths of our world. No matter what you were taught, especially if you were taught the faith from our Western Christian fathers, it usually involves duality: the concept of right and wrong. In this tradition, spirituality gets confused with the shoulds and should nots. You know, the 'thou shalts' and the 'thou shalt nots.'

Along with this type of spirituality comes the spiritual pain of never being good enough, the focusing on ourselves instead of something higher. It is the paternalistic view of a God just waiting to punish us when we do wrong. So when we fail, as we all inevitably do, our guilt becomes our predominant reality. The outcome is that we focus on the negative, our faults and where it is we feel insufficient. Our energy then is the opposite of what we need to experience Love, Grace and Connection. Is this spirituality? Is this spiritual healing?

Spirituality and Connection

My personal understanding of spirituality is quite different than what I describe above. I don’t believe that I was truly taught what is spirituality as a child growing up in a Christian church. That is the main reason I chose to leave the traditional organization of the church behind as an adult. The church provided a community and a form of connection to God, but it was insufficient.

Spirituality is connectedness. That simple. Period. It’s all about connection.

Let me say that again – Spirituality is Connectedness. Spirituality is connectedness to all things. It is connection to the Earth, connection to the Sky, connection to Animals, connection to Plants, connection to God, connection to Source, connection to the Universe, connection to All People and perhaps, most importantly connection to Yourself.

Everything, solid or liquid or gas, energy or form, real or ethereal is all from the same Source. When you begin to understand this concept you can begin to understand what is spirituality.

Spiritual pain ensues when you lose this connection. Spiritual healing ensues when you feel connectedness.

You may have a church or an organization that connects you with your fellow man in a spirit of brotherhood. This is wonderful and it is what I miss most about not being active in a church. As people, we are all more alike than we are different, regardless of our cultural origins. A longing for community and brotherhood is what we all have inside us.

You may have connection with the Earth and Sky and love to be out in the cathedral of Nature where you get your spiritual renewal. There is nothing that brings more connectedness than spending time in the wonder of the natural world.

You may have a connection with a best friend, a significant other, a sister, a brother or a parent. One-on-one connectedness is the single most precious feeling that our culture adores. And rightly so, whether it is romantically inclined or not. We all long for that special someone who sees us as we are, who truly knows us and still accepts us.

You may have a connection with Source/God through your regular practice of centered prayer or meditation. From Source/God is the place where all energy is created for healing. Spiritual healing cannot and will not ensue if you do not have connectedness to the One Source.

You may even have a connection with yourself, where you have spent hours healing your body-mind-soul and you understand yourself and the connection between health and spirituality. Regular time spent in meditation and reflections enhances your perspective of yourself and your place in the world.

If you have connectedness with all of the above, you are the most enlightened person that has used your spiritual pain to turn it into self-awareness, self-actualization and a spirituality of the fullest. I congratulate you. Most of us are not there yet. I know I am not. I am a work in progress and I am OK with that!

But spirituality and spiritual growth starts with your spiritual pain, always! Sometimes I always feel like I am walking the edge! So if you have spiritual pain, know that is your pain that initiates your seeking. It is your seeking that will move you forward on your spiritual journey.

The Light over the Sangre de Cristos

The Light over the Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Colorado

Why Does Spiritual Pain Exist?

So if spirituality is so simple, why then is it so hard to achieve? Why can’t we all love ourselves and love others as the true One intended? Why isn’t spiritual healing automatic?

The answer lies in fear. Our greatest fear is that we will be exposed. The fear that if others see us who we really are that we will not be loved, respected or included. The societal demand for perfection is so strong that we have to pretend that we are perfect. We carry enormous guilt for not being perfect. All we can think about is the shame that we will suffer if we are exposed. This is our own personal shame that we suffer knowing that we are not perfect.

This is why when you are ill or in need that you cannot ask for help. It is because it will look as if you are not perfect and as if you do not have control of your life. God forbid that you lose control of your life!

This thinking is pervasive in our American, if not our Western culture. The thinking is that you are not enough. That you must continue to strive to be a better person, have more things, a bigger house, a bigger car, a more successful child, a perfect marriage, or whatever your personal truth may be. This is what you were taught. When will you believe that if you simplify yourself and your expectations of yourself that your spiritual pain will be eased? You are perfect as you are. Understanding this connection to yourself will aide you in your journey toward spiritual healing.

The simple truth is that it is only when you dare to be vulnerable that you can truly connect to others. When you dare to show that you are not perfect, when you are free to let it all out, then real catharsis can occur. Your vulnerability will pave the way to allow others to be vulnerable. This brings about realness, authenticity and connectedness that you will never achieve otherwise.

We are a society of pretenders. We are a society of people who pretend to be that which we believe is who we should be instead of who we are. When we understand that we are all more alike than we are different, then spiritual healing can begin.

We Are All One

We are all One. We all need to Let It Be. We all need to be exactly who we are. We all need to experience our own vulnerability in order to experience our authenticity. We need to be authentic in order to open up the channels in others for authenticity. If we do this, connectedness will be spontaneous and spiritual healing will be spontaneous.

We truly are all the same in our desire to be loved, to be accepted, to be respected and to be seen for who we really are so we can find our true purpose in life. It is when the doors to this path are closed that spiritual pain and longing for something more will exist. Your spiritual pain can only be eased if you open this door.

If you dare to be vulnerable and be enough for yourself and enough for others, you can open the door! You can now replace the spiritual pain with spiritual healing. If you dare to take the first step and overcome your feelings of shame, you can find connectedness and spiritual fulfillment. Say out loud, "I am enough!" Say this over and over again!

Spending time with yourself, with God, with nature, and with others who dare to be enough themselves will lead you to the path of spirituality and connection that you would only have dreamed about. You must learn the benefits of meditation and silence in order to achieve this connectedness. You must take the time necessary to slow down and show yourself the self-love that is mandatory for spirituality to be paramount in your life. Whether you chose to believe it or not, you ARE a spiritual being. We are all spiritual beings with the same longings and the same desire for spiritual healing.

'The key is to be in a state of permanent connectedness with your inner body - to feel it at all times. This will rapidly deepen and transform your life. The more consciousness you direct into the inner body, the higher its vibrational frequency becomes.'
~ Eckhart Tolle

May your spiritual pain be replaced with spirituality and connection to yourself and to all things. May spiritual healing be a part of your path to healing your body-mind-soul!

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