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Author Topic: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind  (Read 5020 times)

AthenaiiseSofia

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Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« on: September 28, 2011, 10:48:46 am »
My trivial curiosity stuck a question in my head last night, and I decided to post it on here. I'm eager to see what everyone says. =)

In this day and age, there is always SO MUCH going on. We are given an onslaught of media, information, communication, and drama to deal with on a daily basis. I know it differs from lifestyle to lifestyle, but I feel I can safely assume we all have the same basic things to deal with: work, bills, children (possibly), significant other, friendships, etc etc. Sure, people have been doing this for thousands of years, but they weren't exactly always sitting in a cubicle or standing on their feet in front of a register. With so much that our conscious mind has to fiilter through and deal with, how do you stay in a spiritual state of mind?

I'm rather young, so I'm just getting into the 'real' world. And sometimes I can keep in mind that the Goddess is nearby, and everything I do is sacred. But not that often. I'm too busy worrying about baking 30 loaves of bread, slicing two pounds of roast beef, and making sure I have enough time to close up properly. I find it difficult at times to remember life is a celebration, and the Dieties are always watching over me.

So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?
"Go then and make of the world something beautiful, set up a light in the darkness." - from Awakening Osiris by Normandi Ellis

HeartShadow

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2011, 11:54:23 am »
Quote from: Nuri;22768


 
I think *staying* in a spiritual mindset is .. counterproductive.

I mean, sure, it would be great to sit around all day blissed out at the beauty of the Divine.  But y'know - got stuff to do.

I spend a LOT of my work-time in spiritual pursuits.  and the fact that when my son comes home I can turn that OFF and be Mom saves me.  Really.

We can't live *there*.  We live *here*.

Firaza

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2011, 12:17:11 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768
So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?

 
I'd been struggling with this for a few months, but I realized recently that staying in a spiritual state of mind is impossible in this kind of world. The point of my life should be to try to live it as closely to Ma'at as possible, and I don't necessarily need to be in a spiritual state of mind to remember and act on her Her teachings.

Catherine

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #3 on: September 28, 2011, 12:27:20 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768
how do you stay in a spiritual state of mind?


I don't. I get into a spiritual state of mind when it's appropriate. I do keep shrines as a way to say, "Hey, I know you're there, thanks." But I don't think about the gods or spiritual things all of the time.
 
Quote
I'm rather young, so I'm just getting into the 'real' world. And sometimes I can keep in mind that the Goddess is nearby, and everything I do is sacred. But not that often. I'm too busy worrying about baking 30 loaves of bread, slicing two pounds of roast beef, and making sure I have enough time to close up properly. I find it difficult at times to remember life is a celebration, and the Dieties are always watching over me.


I don't think that everything I do is sacred. I'm sure if I tried I could find the sacredness in doing the laundry. But really, what's the point? That seems like a lot of pressure to put on myself when I'm going through my daily routine.

In the big picture, living up to my responsibilities is important to my relationships with my deities, but if I'm constantly trying to keep them in mind or always trying to make the connection between the mundane and sacred, nothing would ever get done.

Quote
So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible).


Well, pretty much, yeah. I don't think that's terrible at all. I'm sure Juno doesn't expect me to be aware of her presence, or think of her when I'm cleaning the toilet, you know?

When it's time for my observances, that's when I put everything else on hold and focus on that alone. Carving out the time to worship when you have a very busy schedule can be a sacrifice all on it's own.

Everyone has different things they feel are required of them though, so YMMV

Katefox

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #4 on: September 28, 2011, 12:50:15 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768
So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?

 
Like the others, I don't think this is realistic, or desirable.  Rather my ideal (which I'm nowhere near, because I'm still figuring out what the Divine is, and how I wish to honour it), would be to set a little bit of time aside each day, no matter how busy I am, to take time to appreciate the Universe, to be spiritual.  And longer ritual/worship would be, just as you said, for my days off, precisely because that is when I would have time to devote to it (unless, of course, it's something that needs to be done at a certain time).  It seems far more productive to have time I can set aside to be fully devoted to the Divine, instead of trying to vaguely pay attention to it throughout the entire day.  Quality over quantity, I guess you could say.

AthenaiiseSofia

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #5 on: September 28, 2011, 01:38:27 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768

So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?

 
First off, thank you all for your replies. =) There are so many, I figured I'd just reply in one thread rather than ten =)

I'm glad you all spoke up, because I was feeling like a bad practicioner, not being able to be constantly in that zone. I guess I figured, hey, these folks are probably a lot more experienced than I am, and the reason they have such good relationships with their dieties is because they have a better grip on this stuff than I do. I don't think its really possible to be in that zone all the time, either. But I was like, hm... am I doing something wrong? I suppose, like with pretty much everything else, there is a time and place for this.

Once again, thank you very much. =)
"Go then and make of the world something beautiful, set up a light in the darkness." - from Awakening Osiris by Normandi Ellis

Asch

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #6 on: September 28, 2011, 01:49:57 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22801


 
I don't think this is necessarily a new 'problem' or concern either, feast days existed for a reason y'know?

sephira

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #7 on: September 28, 2011, 11:08:46 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768
 

So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?

 
You most certainly are NOT terrible for only being able to physically worship on your days off. You aren't a super person!!

I am lucky to have an altar room that is dedicated mostly to my craft and the rest to crafts, lol. Anyway, I don't spend everyday in there even though I don't have a job (I am disabled) and I unfortunately spend a sizable chunk of time at home.  I spend what I consider a healthy amount of time in there each week reading, worshiping, meditating, spell working, etc., but not every day. I enjoy my time in there, but I think if I were to spend any more time in there it would lose its meaning, if you know what I mean. Besides, I worship in other ways like by appreciating nature and thanking the Deities for the little things, and big things, each day.

So you are NOT terrible, just human!;)
"If it ain\'t fun, it ain\'t worth doing!"

Lonstar

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #8 on: September 29, 2011, 04:39:16 am »
Quote from: Nuri;22768


So how do you stay spiritual? Are you like me, struggling to keep up with the world, and only finding time to worship your gods on your days off? (I know, I'm terrible). Or have you mastered mind over matter, and can keep the flame of Divine love alive all the time?

 
When I get out of the office (several times a day) I love taking a deep breath, feeling the elements and walking down the street being aware that it's not people I'm passing but 'spirits' or 'souls'. I find that natually leads me to awareness of the Divine!

Vella Malachite

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2011, 05:39:21 am »
Quote from: Nuri;22801
I was feeling like a bad practicioner, not being able to be constantly in that zone. I guess I figured, hey, these folks are probably a lot more experienced than I am, and the reason they have such good relationships with their dieties is because they have a better grip on this stuff than I do.

 
I'm in exactly the same position and it's also comforting for me to hear that people aren't spiritual all the time.  I generally try to notice Them at least a little bit most days, but I'm a little stuck for offerings and such, so I hope They understand.

I think it's more important to generally believe and frequently express it than believe absolutely and completely every single of your moment of your entire life.  It's tiring, for one thing, to do it that way, and you don't really leave yourself open to new information if you so firmly believe one thing that you can't stop thinking about it, ever.  I'm thinking of finding just a few activities (writing, at the moment, others if they arrive) to devote to Them and make them my spiritual activities.  That's not to say that everything I write must be about or related to Them, but it does mean that I have to make sure I write something that I would be proud of, or I could fix to make me proud of it.  Also, trying to think about why I do things (important things, like how I deal with duties, or frienships or relationships, not why I do the laundry), and whether that fits into what I 'should' be doing or stays true to my personal philosophy is a good form of 'spiritual moment', but it doesn't have to overtake everything.
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toastnstuff

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #10 on: October 13, 2011, 04:14:51 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768
With so much that our conscious mind has to fiilter through and deal with, how do you stay in a spiritual state of mind?


Not trying to be a broken record but, as with everyone else here, it is impossible to keep your mind on the divine 24/7. Life takes over, your mind wanders... we're human, they understand I'm sure =)

My solution to this is to find the small moments. The quiet instances inside of your day when you look up from your horribly mundane task and see something that makes you feel that connection again (a rainbow, the wind in the trees, rain on the roof, hearing the birds, your kids laughing, etc.). Then take a breath and acknowledge this small but significant gift. Thank *insert your god/goddess here* for reminding you that life is beautiful. After that you go on with your day... a little happier ;)

Aster Breo

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #11 on: October 13, 2011, 10:14:05 pm »
Quote from: Nuri;22768

So how do you stay spiritual?

 
I think it depends on how you define "spiritual."  Looking through the previous posts, it seems that people divide their time into "spiritual time" and "mundane time".  I don't really look at it that way.

One of the challenges of being dedicated to a god/dess is how to keep those responsibilities in the forefront of one's mind.  I've found that visual and tactile things really help me.  I have a tattoo on the inside of my left wrist and I wear several pieces of jewelry that honor Brighid and/or help me stay mindful of Her presence in my life (occasionally including a small bell -- that *really* helps me stay mindful :p ).  In addition, I have a daily devotional routine that serves the dual purpose of being regular reminders to stop and think about Brighid.  And I've also just started using prayer beads, which I'm using as a nearly constant reminder.

All that said, it's not like I'm walking around "blissed out" all day, every day.  ;)  It *might* be possible to maintain that state of mind continuously, but I think that would require a monastery-like environment.  Obviously, that's not practical or possible or even desirable for most of us.

But that doesn't mean I can't strive to stay mindful of Brighid and remember frequently to reach out to Her.  The more I do that, the less I feel like I need to set aside large blocks of "spiritual time."  

This works for me, probably because I'm not big on ritual.  So I'm a lot happier with very frequent small spiritual moments that are integrated into my daily life, than I am with setting aside an hour or two for intense spiritual ritual.  But that's just me.  I'm not suggesting that my preferences should work for anyone else.

Ultimately, we all have to find the balance that works for each of us as individuals.  I don't think it's productive to beat yourself up because you're not doing it like somebody else is.  Everyone is different.
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sephira

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #12 on: October 14, 2011, 02:41:17 am »
Quote from: Aster Breo;25320
I think it depends on how you define "spiritual."  Looking through the previous posts, it seems that people divide their time into "spiritual time" and "mundane time".  I don't really look at it that way.

One of the challenges of being dedicated to a god/dess is how to keep those responsibilities in the forefront of one's mind.  I've found that visual and tactile things really help me.  I have a tattoo on the inside of my left wrist and I wear several pieces of jewelry that honor Brighid and/or help me stay mindful of Her presence in my life (occasionally including a small bell -- that *really* helps me stay mindful :p ).  In addition, I have a daily devotional routine that serves the dual purpose of being regular reminders to stop and think about Brighid.  And I've also just started using prayer beads, which I'm using as a nearly constant reminder.

All that said, it's not like I'm walking around "blissed out" all day, every day.  ;)  It *might* be possible to maintain that state of mind continuously, but I think that would require a monastery-like environment.  Obviously, that's not practical or possible or even desirable for most of us.

But that doesn't mean I can't strive to stay mindful of Brighid and remember frequently to reach out to Her.  The more I do that, the less I feel like I need to set aside large blocks of "spiritual time."  

This works for me, probably because I'm not big on ritual.  So I'm a lot happier with very frequent small spiritual moments that are integrated into my daily life, than I am with setting aside an hour or two for intense spiritual ritual.  But that's just me.  I'm not suggesting that my preferences should work for anyone else.

Ultimately, we all have to find the balance that works for each of us as individuals.  I don't think it's productive to beat yourself up because you're not doing it like somebody else is.  Everyone is different.

 
Since my last post things have changed...I don't mean to say that I spend my days 'blissed out' or anything, but I do spend a lot more time in my altar room. I make an offering of lotus incense (that's all) to my deity every day. I spend a lot more time talking to my deity (it should be said that I didn't have a specific one earlier). I'm making a better effort of meditating, whereas I was kind of giving up before. I'm thinking of getting a tattoo to show my devotion to my deity. Point being, since  receiving a deity I think I see my bigger picture, but what works for me does NOT have to work for someone else. Like I said to Nuri in the beginning, we are all human and we can only do what we can do. I don't think those above expect us to be in a spiritual state 24/7 anyway: it's just not realistic. Finding beauty and meaning in the the small things, that should be enough.
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ccardinot

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #13 on: February 05, 2012, 07:05:15 pm »
Quote from: sephira;25349
Since my last post things have changed...I don't mean to say that I spend my days 'blissed out' or anything, but I do spend a lot more time in my altar room. I make an offering of lotus incense (that's all) to my deity every day. I spend a lot more time talking to my deity (it should be said that I didn't have a specific one earlier). I'm making a better effort of meditating, whereas I was kind of giving up before. I'm thinking of getting a tattoo to show my devotion to my deity. Point being, since  receiving a deity I think I see my bigger picture, but what works for me does NOT have to work for someone else. Like I said to Nuri in the beginning, we are all human and we can only do what we can do. . I don't think those above expect us to be in a spiritual state 24/7 anyway: it's just not realistic. Finding beauty and meaning in the the small things, that should be enough. /
Quote

 
As I'm not the ritualistic type of witch, I am always looking for the symbols and advices of my true parents. And I think  that the best way to honor them is to be very best kind of person we can be at the moment, take the wisest decisions we can and be someone we'd like to be proud of, for all the rights reasons. That's how I try to do every single day.  And I'm starting to discover that every single chore and duty is sacred and holy.
Someone said that probably Juno wouldn't like to be reminded while one is cleaning up the toilet. I ask: why not? She was known for being the patroness of beauty, fertility and love, and all can take place properly in every situation. Cleaning up is a devotional chore, you're banishing all possible negativity and disease from that place, and bringing order and health to it's occupants. That's how I view it.


Cheers!

Catherine

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Re: Staying in a Spiritual State of Mind
« Reply #14 on: February 06, 2012, 10:31:54 am »
Quote from: ccardinot;41640

Someone said that probably Juno wouldn't like to be reminded while one is cleaning up the toilet. I ask: why not? She was known for being the patroness of beauty, fertility and love, and all can take place properly in every situation. Cleaning up is a devotional chore, you're banishing all possible negativity and disease from that place, and bringing order and health to it's occupants. That's how I view it.


What I actually said was,

Quote from: Catherine;22786

I'm sure Juno doesn't expect me to be aware of her presence, or think of her when I'm cleaning the toilet


First of all, IMO your description of Juno barely scratches the surface of who She is. That's coming from someone who's been dedicated to Her for years.

Second, you ask why not? Because She doesn't expect me to be in a spiritual state of mind every minute of every day. It's just not practical. More importantly, if I'm going to honor Her it's better to do so by actually setting aside time in my day to do it properly. This is how my relationship with Her works.

Certainly living up to up my responsibilities, maintaining my home and taking care of my family is important to my relationship with Her. However, it's been my experience that She expects more from me than just a passing thought when I'm preforming mundane household tasks. In fact, outside of attending to Her shrine, I'm pretty sure She'd be insulted if I did consider cleaning a devotional act!

"Hey Juno, I dedicate this toilet brush to you" Um, I don't think so...;)

Sure "cleaning up" can be a devotional chore for some people, but it's not for me and it doesn't fit into my personal practices. Especially where Juno is concerned.

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