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Practicing Serenity (or Why Should I Believe?)

Whether life waxes or wanes, you should feel serenity in the waters of your beliefs.

Whether life waxes or wanes, you should feel serenity in the waters of your beliefs.

I’ve thought a lot recently about spirituality and how we engage with spiritual life. My recent post on Seeing the Spirit of Things (see link below) got me started on defining spirituality some, but I’ve recently realized more specifically what I want out of spirituality and how I want to help others with their spiritual lives.

The Serene Spirit

The main purpose of spirituality is to achieve a meaningful sense of serenity that maintains us during both rewarding times and times of challenge or lack. In my previous post, I painted a picture of spirituality as moving away from reacting to need toward developing self-awareness. However, I think this process is only helpful if self-awareness ultimately leads to serenity. What do I mean by serenity? Well the rather well known serenity prayer sums it all up (read the Serenity Prayer on Wikipedia). The balance between courage and acceptance is pretty much what serenity is all about.

There are four ways I’ve helped myself achieve better serenity. I’d like to help others use these same practices to achieve better serenity as well.

Awakening to Meaningful Interpretation

Meaningful interpretation helps us embrace life and realize where fulfillment really comes from. I started exploring spirituality through the occult as a way to escape life. However, I’ve learned since then that meaningful living can help you embrace life more fully and gracefully work with it. When we realize how important it is for us to have meaningful experiences, we approach things differently. We wonder why we do things. We take time out to reflect on why things happen to us. We ask the questions that lead us to greater fulfillment in the heart rather than what should logically be fulfilling according to the mind. This move toward meaning and fulfillment allows us to face why we choose to escape life at all and start making intentional choices about our happiness.

Identifying and Focusing on Purpose

Tackling the meaning or purpose of life can be too much for any one person, but we should always try to define our own purpose. Purpose contributes to our sense of fulfillment. When we find something worthwhile to support and develop, we get that connection to life that can’t come from immediate reward. It’s that connection to accomplishment and to something more awesome than mere task completion. It gives us something to reflect on, something to support right now and something to point our lives toward. Purpose sets the stage for fulfillment.

Embracing Feelings and Their Power

Feelings are an integral part of spirituality and a meaningful life, because they reflect our sense of connection to everything. Serenity is more a feeling than a thought. If we can’t allow ourselves to feel, then we can’t ever truly feel happiness, serenity, peace or any other heartfelt reward. This kind of reward connects us to what we do. We tend to do the things that create more happiness or serenity and avoid things that burden us with stress, aggravation or grief. However, we should always be ready to feel what goes on around us. It’s important that we embrace our feelings as they tell us a lot about what is important to us and who we are on a more meaningful level.

Becoming a More Whole Person

We get closer to serenity the more we can open up to our many complex sides and integrate everything into a unified self. Denial is a spiritual toxin that leads us to push away solutions to our problems. If we shove the meaningful parts of us away, however frightening they may be, we risk remaining fragmented and haunted by demons. Spirituality should help us face such demons and turn them into angels. These angels, we realize eventually, are really parts of who we are that can help us, even if only under special circumstances. We may not be able to be all things at once, be we should be ready to recognize all the things we are.

Best Wishes To You

I hope you get closer to a sense of serenity whether I help you or not. However, I hope that whatever I write gives you another piece to the puzzle of your life.

Check out my post on Seeing the Spirit of Things

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Finding Serenity in the Cards – or how one of my Tarot readings can help you develop serenity – Sunday at 10:00 a.m.

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The City Park of New Orleans – Tomorrow at 10 a.m.