LET THERE BE DARKNESS
With the dark half of the year growing in strength, we increasingly turn inward for reflection. But something compels us to deepen this spiritual warrior’s journey to study our true nature, both the traits that we admire and those we reject. While the land lulls itself to sleep, this marks the time to honor our inner wisdom as well as the potential self-destructive tendencies we all hold inside.
THE RIGHT RHYTHM
The information age has data moving close to the speed of light, but this era of high-tech gadgetry isn’t making our personal lives any more productive or leisurely because we’re conditioned to run at full speed. The Western world’s obsession with time and never-ending activity is inhibiting our ability to connect with ourselves and others, providing us with low-quality health care, food and free time. The answer isn’t to turn away from the wealth of opportunities that advancements can bring to our lives. Perhaps the key to a happier, healthier life lies in slowing down enough to become more aware when making the choices that create our world.
LEGENDS OF FALL
The official start of fall is the Autumnal Equinox, also known as Alban Elfed to Druids and Mabon to other nature-based faiths. With the equality of day and night, it’s a time to celebrate balance in our lives. But this is also the final harvest before darkness overtakes the light, when we begin to retreat indoors and into intense reflection. Instead of turning away from the darkness within, we can enrich our lives and deepen our creativity by harnessing the power of fall.
FINDING LOVE IN ALL PLACES
Love is nourishment our souls need to thrive, but do we feed ourselves properly or have we become a society of emotional anorexics? Numerous kinds of love exist, yet we focus a wealth of attention on finding and keeping romantic love. With rampant divorce rates and unhappy relationships, we need to look beyond this desire. Why is it that we’re sometimes shyer and less comfortable with platonic relationships than we are with romantic ones? The story of Hindu beloveds Radha and Krisna can help us see past our yearning to the core of our true desire.
Quantum physics now proves what Hindus and Druids have believed for centuries – that are thoughts and deeds have power beyond our immediate circumstances. Karma is the law of cause and effect – the proverbial ripple in the water returning the energy we emit magnified. By sharpening our desires into focused intent, we can manifest them into creation.
BOUNDARIES, BARRIERS AND BAROMETERS
Developing and maintaining personal boundaries are an integral part of a healthy spiritual life. But how do we set parameters that protect us from negative situations and interactions while allowing for love and the deepening of our relationships? Here are some tips for establishing clear boundaries that can enhance our ability to connect safely.
GURU, GURU, EVERYWHERE A GURU
The Indian holiday of Guru Purnima is a sacred occasion celebrating teachers who awaken our spirituality and provide us with tools to reach enlightenment. With guiding principles to avoid falling prey to charlatans or faulty expectations, the Eastern tradition of developing a relationship with a spiritual guide can easily be adapted to Western life.
SPIRITUAL WARRIOR 101
Spiritual Warriors seek peace, love and emotional nourishment often to heal from experiences of trauma and addiction. This journey starts with the meaning of life and the study of different pathways to find our personal reason for existence. Western psychology offers several theories on the primary motivating factors that shape our lives, while Eastern philosophy takes the broad view that existence is a natural occurrence and that there is meaning in everything. The Spiritual Warrior doesn’t just ruminate over hypotheses or spend infinite hours in analysis. Experiential expedition must occur both inside our souls and outside in community. Meditation offers us the opportunity to examine our inner selves, including the ways in which we are infinitely human. The communal practices of Bhakti Yoga, including kirtan, can help us handle fear as we peel back the layers of the onion to reveal our true selves.