Do you realize there are actually two worlds you need to be aware of plus learn how to interface with regularly? Most people are aware of the one which is the material world which you and I perceive through our senses. But what of that which we can not tap into this way? Should you be ignoring it? In this article, I am going to make a case that you should not, and especially not if you hope to realize your full potential and live a life that is full of passion.
Focused on Personal Effectiveness in the Material World?
Many people define or determine their effectiveness in the material world based upon their ability to attain personal goals. If you fit into this category, you many think that your life is going well when you’re able to keep checking things off a list. When you aren’t able to do so, or at least not as rapidly as you’d like because you are somehow thwarted in meeting some of them, you may be inclined to think that you aren’t being so effective after all. And as a result, you may even beat yourself up mentally.
In your head, you may think such things as “If only I had only been more competent,” or “If only I had done more,” or “If only I’d had the foresight to handle things differently, I would have been able to meet my goal.” Then, as if this condemning self talk wasn’t enough, have you ever decided that you needed to punish yourself for your failure? If so, you undoubtedly did not allow yourself to fully savor or enjoy other aspects of life that had nothing to do with attainment of your goals.
People who behave in this way tend to feel driven to accomplish and achieve. While some people enjoy the process of accomplishing a task or goal, typically with these folks, that is not the case. Rather, they have a need to have accomplished whatever the goal was. Why do they feel driven to attain a goal versus enjoying the process? Because they’re convinced that upon attainment of that goal, that they’ll find ever-lasting happiness.
Sadly, it doesn’t seem to work that way. Often, shortly after achieving the goal, the happiness felt as a result soon begins to dissipate. Thus, another goal must be pursued and reached. However, if many goals have been pursued, achieved, and ongoing happiness still eludes the individual, then inertia may set in. Indeed, the person may be confused--wondering what avenue to pursue next.
How does what I’ve just said about the pursuit of goals relate to the concept of codependency or being codependent? To my way of thinking, the term codependent defines the person who’s only aware of this material world and relies upon attainment of personal goals—often associated with attainment of things, or the attainment of the right relationship, or attainment of the right lifestyle, for example, as the means to happiness. While the underlying goal or motivation is a desire to experience ongoing happiness—or actually inner contentment and joy--the person is not apt to find them in this way.
Tapping into the Non-physical
An individual must learn how to turn inward and connect with something beyond the material world and the desires of what might be called the ego self. There seems to be a need for all of us to come to connect with a higher power if this inner contentment and joy is to be found. Personally, I like to think of this as tapping into God Within. You may be more comfortable referring to it as the universe, infinite intelligence, the divine, or the ground of all being, for example. It does not matter that much what term you use. What does matter is that you come to realize that there is more than the material world you should be concerned about.
You need to be concerned not merely with meeting personal goals in the physical world, but to honor what might best be described as the callings of your soul. You must feed your spirit or indeed, inner contentment and joy will never be yours. While you may find fleeting moments of happiness, you'll likely experience much misery as you strive harder and harder to reach your goals.
The fact you're ignoring your spiritual bankruptcy will undoubtedly cause more and more emotional pain in your life--and this will be despite the fact you may have reached all those goals you'd set for yourself.
Truths about Spirituality and Spiritual Growth
Science is now often telling us what the world’s great religions have told us all along. And while it was once only religious leaders or mystics who were allowed to experience and speak of the unseen, that’s no longer the case. Rather, we live in an age where we’re being asked to acknowledge and tap into the energy of the unseen as never before.
To do so, you needn’t go to church and become religious. After all, there’s a difference between religiosity and spirituality--although some people confuse the two. As a result, some believe that they can’t embrace spiritual growth because they don’t like organized religion. Or, because they grew up being told that God is vengeful, and they don’t believe in a vengeful God, they believe it's impossible to be a spiritual person. But in truth, seeking to grow spiritually doesn’t demand either of these.
You need to realize that religions are organized and formalized. They tell their followers what to believe and how to behave. Spirituality, though, is more of a do-it-yourself type of thing. Of course, you’re not truly doing it all yourself because you’re tapping into energy which is omnipresent—of which all things are composed. And again, this energy which is within all and connecting all, is God—or whatever term you elect to use instead (such as the cosmic force). What is most significant here? Thar you realize you can tap into it. Indeed, you can use it in ways that can create what will seem like miracles in your life.
When you accept the presence of this realm and not merely that of the physical world, both you and your life can be transformed.
Some people seem unable to do this. Why? Because you have to be able to think different thoughts than those that adults likely fed you as a child. Many of us have heard and adhere to the saying, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” However, to accept the presence of this other realm and that you can tap into it and use it to achieve that which is truly your heart’s desire--or to fulfill your life’s mission—you have to come to believe before you'll perceive. In other words, it demands a leap of faith.
You can come to connect with what I like to call “God energy” by slowing down the vibrations of your brain through meditation or contemplative prayer. Then again, you might do it through writing--such as in a journal. Some people make this connection by walking quietly in the woods. They strive to become one with nature.
You may come to realize that God is there to help you if you can slow down and stop striving so hard to reach those goals of yours. Instead, learn to get quiet, turn within, and listen to what the soft voice of your intuition may be trying to tell you versus paying attention to that squawking voice in your head. After all, it's likely either fearful or condemning. Also, realize that while you may well come to sense you're being given inner guidance by God, sometimes God will speak to you through the words or actions of others, too.
So, how do you know which words and actions of others to attend to and which to ignore? In time, you'll likely realize that you experience a kind of quickening or alertness to certain things that are being said--that the words speak to you. But then, you also are filled with this sense that this is indeed the direction you now need to go. Also, whatever you're being nudged to do should prove beneficial not only to yourself, but to others. It's not something that should hurt or harm others in the way that ego-driven actions might well do. (Hence, you would not give into a sudden sexual attraction to someone other than your partner and Start an affair. Again,from the beginning you'll have the sense that what you're being asked to do will have positive results—or at least be a step in that direction.)
For me, where I most sense this connection to the Divine is when I write. I do not typically outline or plan my articles or my books as some people might. Okay, when I wrote my self-help book, “The Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Relationship,” I did have to provide a listing of the chapters and a brief blurb about the content of each to the publisher. But when it came time to write, I essentially just started writing. So, ideas would just flow to me. Then, if I didn’t really know the subject matter and had to do some more research, it often seemed as if the right article or book would practically fall into my lap. I might discover it through a search on the internet, a friend might mail an article to me out of the blue, or someone would mention a book that was going to be just what I needed to peruse. Anyway, it seemed time and again I didn't have to strive heard to find the materials or sources I needed. All I had to do was remain committed and essentially become the scribe.
Indeed, the way I saw things, it was not really me writing that book. I was the conduit doing what I came to see as God’s Will for me—thereby fulfilling my purpose or mission at the time.
When you begin to approach your life in this way—that you are an instrument of this higher power I call God--things become easier for you. That said, you certainly can’t step back and do nothing. Furthermore, you'll be called upon to do things you may not prefer to do because they prove challenging and demand sacrifice. But if you keep stepping forward and taking those right actions, I suspect you'll come to feel you're being helped each step of the way. But if you slip and allow the ego to take over, you may suddenly realize you're not being given the help you once were. not take note of the help you’re being given. But if you strive to remain aware, you will see it. The person or information may appear in the present. Then again, it may be that you have to reconnect with someone from the past. In fact, you may come to suspect that perhaps that it why you met that person or had that experience to begin with—because it could propel you to this place where you are now, or someone from your past would be able to help you face this latest challenge you were being asked to meet to follow your purpose.
When you approach life this way, following the guidance you’re given from the unseen as opposed to merely striving hard to achieve goals that feed the ego self, it can be both exhausting as well as exhilarating. It can be exhausting because challenging things will be asked of you. But then again, you'll likely come to love the process—so you'll not merely be living for the day the goal is reached. It's also exciting to see a project take shape not because you strained to do it, but because you followed the guidance of that higher power—what I prefer to call Go Within. You realize that you have accomplished something that is more glorious than you could ever have accomplished on your own as that small ego self. And the thing is, your spirit and soul are fed as you realize that indeed, you are making a difference.
Discover the Sheer Joy of Co-Creating with God
When you come to perceive and accept your oneness with the universe—or perceive that you are to be living in concert with God’s plan for you—life becomes very different. You shift from focusing on the material world and others to get your needs met or to find fleeting moments of happiness. Instead, you recognize that you’ll be given continual gentle guidance regarding what you’re supposed to do. Opportunities will open before your eyes and quickly, you will seize them. You’ll also realize that they’re taking you forward down a path way that brings you joy because it fits with your dreams—it allows you to fulfill them. But then, why shouldn’t that be so? After all, they were given to you for a reason—because you were supposed to live these things coming from your heart--as opposed to being driven by the desires of your ego.
You are transformed by your awakening. You realize you’re no longer codependent because you’re no longer spiritually bankrupt, dependent upon the material world or others for a sense of identity. Instead, you've become a co-creator with God.