To wait be completely free of worldly entanglements before we undertake the spiritual path is absurd. It is like waiting for the waves to subside before taking a swim in the sea – Swami Chinmayananda
Is your inner voice telling you to spend more time on your spiritual pursuits? Have you been ignoring or putting it off for the “right” time?
Are you waiting for your life to be less hectic, your children to grow up, when you move to another city, switch jobs, retire, or any other favourable conditions before you begin your spiritual journey?
Perhaps you are ready but don’t know where and how to start living a spiritual life.
Do Your Daily Duties
No matter where you are in life, you can start to grow right now, in precisely the circumstances and stage of life that you find yourself in. How? You can begin by doing your regular daily duties at work or at home with some important inner adjustments.
Our duties and responsibilities come to us as opportunities to grow spiritually. They take us out of our preoccupation with our own selfish desires by requiring us to do work for the benefit of others. Read:How to use your work to grow spiritually
I know it sounds obvious, but the first thing to do is to make sure you do your duties! Never neglect to do them or try to run away from them. They enable you to grow and mature spiritually in life.
Now, here are the small, but vital tweaks you must make while doing your duties. Never allow your personal likes and dislikes, negative emotions or thoughts deter you from doing them in the best way you can. Do them happily, cheerfully, gratefully, without worrying about what you will get from doing them. Simply focus on getting the job done in the right way every time.
Lastly, and here’s the key, dedicate your actions and their results to God. In this way, you divinize your everyday actions as you grow in inner purity and integrity.
Associate With The Good
The raindrop from the sky, if it is caught in the hands, is pure enough for drinking. If it falls in the gutter, its value drops so much that is cannot be used for even washing the feet. If it falls on a hot surface, it perishes. If it falls on a lotus leaf, it shines like a pearl and finally, if it falls on an oyster, it becomes a pearl. The drop is the same, but its existence and worth depends on with whom it associates. – Swami Vivekananda.
To cultivate and keep up higher vibrations is absolutely crucial on the spiritual path. The way to do this is to keep company with the good. As Swami Vivekananda says in the quote above, our existence and worth depends on whom and what we associate with.
The word ‘good’ here, is defined as that which brings inner peace and advances our spiritual growth.
The world with its enchanting temptations, and people with lower goals and values, can influence and pull us away from our path and inner focus. The spiritual masters advise us to keep the company of good people, thoughts. emotions and things.
Good people are those that help us keep positive goals, and support and encourage us to do the right thing. Associating with good company will help us maintain positive emotions and live noble values such as patience, forgiveness, fortitude and compassion.
Another important thing to remember is to be careful of what you see, hear and read. These are the main doorways through which negative influences enter your mind.
A serious spiritual seeker must always keep association with the good in all aspects of his or her life.
Time for Daily Reflection
On a daily basis, carve out some time for inspirational reading and reflection. It could be reading a quote or passage from a uplifting book.
More importantly, churn those ideas over and over in your mind and relate them into your own life and experiences. This embeds them in your psyche and eventually moulds your character.
The best time for reading and reflection is when your mind is peaceful and quiet. It could be first thing in the morning or just before you go to sleep at night. Find a time in your day when your mind is free to contemplate subtle ideas, and then stick to it.
Daily reflection brings inner transformation. Without thinking and reflecting, we keep living the same way, making the same mistakes and suffer in life.
Simple Three Things
Doing your duties uncompromisingly with the right attitude, keeping the company of the good and daily reflection, are three simple and very powerful ways to begin your spiritual journey.
So, what are you waiting for? Jump in and start swimming!
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