Spiritual Practices in Times of Crisis: Inspiration
Sometimes we need a little outside help to open the windows to the heart.
Throughout history, spiritual seekers and master teachers have been sharing their insights and wisdom with us in the form of scripture, short verses, sutras, poetry, and daily wisdom.
These writings bless us with calm and perspective.
They are soothing, heart-opening life lessons and words of wisdom that remind us of the peace we aspire to.
The peace we aspire to. Sounds good doesn't it?
As we continue our series on Spiritual Practices in Times of Crisis, (find the previous posts in the series here), we look at a soothing way to align with the Divine and set the stage for your daily spiritual practice.
Today we look at:
When we arrive in our spiritual practice seat, the gift of sacred words can be just the balm we need to slow down, get present, and rise above our material world to the depth and calm of the soul.
Inspirational Reading as a starting place for our spiritual practice time is important for two reasons:
1 - It gives the mind a spiritual focus - engaging our worried, racing thoughts with something sacred and tangible.
Where your focus goes, your energy flows. So you are telling your mind that it's time to focus on the spiritual.
2 - It aligns us with the Divine - speaking directly to our spirits.
When we arrive in our spiritual practice seat and pick up a book, this is the signal that Holy Time begins.
As we drink in the wisdom of the words, we activate our highest selves and remember who we are - magnificent beings of love, joy and peace.
Yes, please. Sign me up for that, right?
You might want to choose a traditional sacred text or a devotional that divides the verses into a daily dose of wisdom. If you prefer to read electronically, a quick search in your app store will lead you to some wonderful apps that break the texts down into daily readings.
Then there is spiritual poetry, yoga poetry and short inspirational essays.
Or full-length books on spirituality, meditation, saints or angels that you can take a few pages at a time.
The choices are endless. The right book will always fall into your hands. Only read what resonates with you.
DAYBOOKS FROM MY TOWER
I have always held a soft spot for the daybook format. Daybooks have been part of my morning spiritual practice for decades.
I never tire of bite-sized wisdom in tandem with the longer, deeper books for devoted spiritual seekers. Daybooks speak to my soul and make a prayer of the precious hours of the day that follow.
Here are some Daybooks that have rotated in and out of the tower of books near my spiritual practice seat:
Pocketful of Miracles, Joan Borysenko
Spiritual Diary, Paramahansa Yogananda
Meditations from the Mat, Rolf Gates and Katrina Kenison
Jesus Calling, Sarah Young
A Year of Miracles, Marianne Williamson
Pocket Maya Angelou Wisdom, Hardie Grant Books
Simple Abundance, Sarah Ban Breathnach
A Year With Rumi, ed. Coleman Barks
Stillness Speaks, Eckhart Tolle
And there are many more where these came from.
EVERY DAY SPIRIT
It was my great love of Daybooks that inspired the writing of Every Day Spirit: A Daybook of Wisdom, Joy and Peace.
Brewing in my heart for a decade, it emerged as a daily guide with short essays of life lessons that lead us to a more peaceful, joyful, meaningful life.
These are essays that awaken our spirit.
They were written for just this moment we are talking about here - inspirational wisdom to absorb as part of our morning spiritual practice.
TRY A COMBINATION
Daybooks, sacred scripture and meditations are usually a page per day or in a verse format, so it's possible to choose a few to read each morning.
Whether it's a single paragraph or several pages a day to start your spiritual practice time, it's completely up to you to find what resonates with your soul.
What you choose is perfect for you.
AS PART OF YOUR PRACTICE
When we take our spiritual practice seat, Inspirational Reading becomes our introduction and our grounding force.
After a few pages of reading, our hearts are open and receptive for the practices to follow: Gratitude Practice, Meditation, Prayer, Affirmations, Journaling, a walk in nature.
Inspiration, wherever we find it, lifts us out of our habitual way of thinking and sets the tone and the alignment of all that follows.
Consider using spiritual reading to begin your spiritual practice time every day. Even one verse, or one page will awaken your spirit for a sacred date with your soul.
In times of challenge and change, our spiritual practices are more important than ever.
Not only can we take deliberate actions to decrease our stress levels - we can enhance our spiritual connection that brings hope, peace and perspective to all aspects of our lives.
We can do this.
I'm reading right beside you. There's no place I'd rather be. So much love and many blessings, Mary xo
Previous posts in this series, Spiritual Practices in Times of Crisis, are here.