We all have what might be called an ‘inner life’. Well, I do, and I’m assuming you do too.
Some people have an aversion to words and phrases they perceive as ‘touchy-feely’, but we all strive at some point to make sense of living. Religion and philosophy have traditionally supplied the maps, but we live in an age of GPS now and an inner compass is more necessary than ever.
Cultivating the inner life means taking a pledge to knowing ourselves, and building the sort of skills that can lead to contentment and fulfilment. This requires commitment, courage and above all honesty. Although it makes life easier, it is not an easy path to take. You can’t do it part-time, either.
When we start to discuss terms like ‘spiritual nourishment’, ‘inner journey’, and ‘inner self’, it’s only to be expected that it makes some people feel uncomfortable as we are exploring concepts – such as the thoughts, emotions, values and aspirations that guide us – that few of us examine in our daily lives.
Contemporary society, our pace of life, the obsession with measurable results, and the rest, have progressively alienated us from the inner part of ourselves – our spirit if you like (there’s another one!) – and even from our environment. This is at great cost to us, both as individuals and to the societies we make up.
There is a sense of impoverishment in many lives that most of us can identify with at some point.This is often prompted by a crisis, and it may lead to people seeking answers outside themselves, even signing up to extreme ideologies in some cases. Ironically, ideology usually encourages us to be less in touch with ourselves and follow the dogma.
If you have a religion you may think you have this cracked, but being religious does not mean being spiritual any more than having a map means knowing the way.
Be assured that there is nothing ‘flaky’ or ‘touchy-feely’ about accepting your spirituality and examining your inner life. Any discomfort will only be what you’d expect when trying something new, and it will pass quickly.