Spiritual practice.  It’s essential.  Necessary.

What is it? Sitting crosslegged in the lotus position ummmmiing?  You could.  Reading the bible or another inspirational book, maybe.  Praying, you know, chatting with God?  Possibly.  Yoga, ya that too.

Go deeper than what might be obvious.  Spiritual practice is about quieting yourself, and connected with your inward places and with God.  Quiet. It is a quiet thing.  It’s the thing you need to do to disconnect with the distractions and embrace the deep things, the unseen real things.

It’s first meditation.  Not prayer.  Prayer seems active. It usually requires the use of words, either thought or spoken.  It involves a certain amount of connecting with something.  Meditation is disconnecting.  It’s separating ourselves from our over active minds, and over busy lives.  It’s a time to let go of what is external, to focus on the internal.

Prayer is important.  It’s part of spiritual practice and living as a spiritual being.  In order to pray, to find and form thoughts and words and offer them up to God in a genuine way, we need to meditate first. Still our minds, relax our bodies and let ourselves truly connect with God, and not just speak too many prayer like words.  I could do the word thing like a champ.  Sound really good, and not have a clue what the words I was speaking actually meant. I was not at all connected with myself, so in turn was not really connected with God, and so I threw lots of beautiful sounding words right into the wind…..

There are different ways to meditate. I’m certainly not an expert!  Just a woman trying to live an authentic life, particularly when it comes to spirituality. Here’s the little bit I do know…ya need to keep it simple and figure out what works for you!  It doesn’t have to take an hour.  It’s not about reaching some sort of inner nirvana (unless that’s what you are seeking).  You don’t have to say or think much of anything.  You don’t have to sit in the lotus position, unless of course you find it comfortable…can’t imagine how that would ever happen…

Being the go go, do do girl that I am, you would be right to assume that meditation is not my strength. It’s hard to do, and hard not to do.  I need that quieting in order to be me, and connect in authentic, meaningful ways with myself, my God and the world I inhabit. I hate taking the time to do something still, when the rest of me is screaming about the to do list….angst.

Here’s what I am learning to do.  Meditation is becoming my habit. I keep it simple.  I breathe every morning before my feet even hit the floor.  Belly breaths, 100 of them.  Gentle.  Nose, use the nose.  The only thing I let into my head are the counting of the numbers.  If my mind wanders, I simply throw a lasso around it and keep going.  My mind is always wandering….then some mouth breathing.  A couple minutes of gentle mouth breaths to clear any stagnant sort of energy.  By this time I am feeling pretty darn good.  Then joy comes, it wells up from a beautiful, deep place inside me. All this takes just a few minutes. What a lovely way to have the day begin… Time to feed my husband and the dogs. Finn, the cocker, won’t quit squeaking until she gets her chow…Then the rest of my day unfolds. 

QiQong in the morning, this takes 20 minutes, and a walk in the afternoon.  My body needs to move and I need fresh air after hours in the studio or bent over my computer….this is when I pray, the active thing-chatting with God.  Very, very enjoyable, something I look forward too.

Sometimes I write. It’s not for you to read. Just me.  It’s the place where I sort myself out and understand what’s really going on with Jan.  There are days when I elude myself…and wonder what in the world....??

There are times when I need to go deep.  Down there, where the goodness is…. Let time float by, go far, far inward.  For an afternoon.  No words, no music, just quiet, and me with myself and God.  I curl up in a place that feels cozy and safe and fly away. It’s a physical thing, that my body feels, this sort of deepness.  Absolutely essential.

Can you breath 100 breaths for the sake of yourself?  If that’s too much to ask right now, how about 10?  Start with 10, and then next week do 20.  See where you end up.  You could be surprised…

Spiritual practice is intentional. It’s a habit to cultivate. Don’t expect to have it figured out tomorrow.  Spirituality is meant to be a journey, one of self discovery.  Don’t rush, savor your trip-love yourself along the way.  One day you will find your heart wrapped in the joy of inward things,  authentically and deeply grounded in all that’s truly spiritual.



Leave a Reply