So I was sitting here re-reading one of my fave books and this post came to mind. The book is “The Circle Within: Creating a Wiccan Spiritual Tradition” by Dianne Sylvan.
This book is my most loved. Even if you aren’t Wiccan I think it is a book you should read. Its simple, its short and it goes through a discussion on how to build your own spiritual practice in our busy world. It has some bits and pieces that are very Wiccan-centric, but overall the lessons and thoughts she brings up can be used by any faith.
Right off the bat she talks about prayer. And it is something that I have found to be important to me. Few know that I sit on the bus praying in my head, or that as I walk around I am opening a dialogue to my Gods. It is something so simple and yet I find it connects me. In the book she uses the example of a time she worked in a trauma center. She asked one of the nuns there how they stayed so calm through out the day and her answer was that she kept a constant dialogue to God open in her mind, that she prayed constantly.
And I have found it to be true. If I spend my day praying, taking in moments to open myself to my Gods, being grateful and mindful in the moment I find I feel so much more fulfilled. Granted it might not work for everyone, but for me it does.
So I started thinking about my other daily practices. Some of them are really obviously spiritual and others are not, but each one is an important part of my day.
To start I make sure I always hug my husband before he leaves for the day. It is simple but it is a connection. It is a moment I can take in and feel the love and feel blessed.
I also make sure I stand at the altar, light my candles and pray. If I am alone in the house I speak out loud and just sorta ramble about whatever is in my mind and heart. If I am not alone, I do it in my head. It can take all of 2 mins or I can stand there for 10. It is something I have done for years now and even on the hectic and busy days I still managed to find the energy to do it.
Certain days of the week I have scheduled to do more intense work. When I was working I picked one of the days I had off so I had time.
I often pray in my mind as I craft. At work I used to do it while I worked. I do it while I walk to the bus, ride the bus, lay in bed at night, while I clean.. whenever the urge strikes me I do it.
I have taken to spending a few mins just sitting and feeling my energy. Sometimes I will send white light through my chakras, sometimes I pull up earth energy and then reach up to pull down star energy. Sometimes I chant or drum or dance. Whatever feels right in the moment, but I take those few moments to be in myself. Connecting and checking everything over to see how my energy levels are and how my body is feeling.
If I am somewhere and the urge to dance is upon me I will boogie. Anyone who has spent time with me shopping has seen me break out a little dance moves in a store. Who cares if I look ridiculous? If I am feeling the energy and want to do little twirl or hop or jazz hands.. whatever, then I will. It is how my joy comes forth sometimes.
At dinner my husband and I discuss what we are grateful for. Sometimes it is hard to come up with something, other days it is easy. Either way we both do it and we both enjoy it. It is spiritual without being of any Faith. Gratitude is beautiful.
Those are some of my daily practices. It has taken a long time to find this combination of things that works for me. I think though that most people rush through something and if it doesn’t click immediately they move on. We need to learn to slow down and try something for a week or two and see how we feel. See if it makes a change in anything in your life. Give it a fair shot before you toss the idea and move on.
We expect our faith to give us immediate results. Sometimes it has to grow. Sometimes it needs to work its way slowly and be nurtured. We are so used to a world of instant gratification that we don’t know what to do when we have to go slow.
Some ideas for those trying to find their connections
- Go outside. Sit and enjoy the energy. Feel the wind, enjoy the sunshine or moonlight. Do it every day for a week and see how you feel.
- Pray. Find a way that makes sense to you. Maybe you do it in your head. Maybe you kneel at your altar. Maybe you sing it or chant it… try it all and see what works for you.
- Dance. Turn up the music and boogie in your living room. See how the energy makes you feel.
- Go for a walk and stop to appreciate nature. Pause and look at each plant or tree. Stop to touch things and connect.
- Play on the playground. Find your inner child. Get on the swings, blow bubbles, laugh and enjoy the moment.
- Light the candles on your altar and just sit in silence. Enjoy the calmness, the quiet, the way the light plays.
- Chant in the shower.
- Pull out craft supplies or art supplies and let yourself play. Enjoy yourself.
Some simple ideas, but maybe one of them helps you start to build your practice. Maybe you start to realize that you love to go for a weekly walk. That maybe in the mornings before work you love to dance. All these things can be spiritual.