Excerpts from Chapter 10: The Path of Spiritual Growth

Excerpt 1: “The decision to take responsibility for discovering your inner ‘truth’ requires that you embark on a quest to develop your own spiritual philosophy. This does not automatically mean you must completely discard your traditional religious beliefs, but it does require that you be willing to question literally every aspect of what you have been taught. It also means that you learn to challenge everything you hear and read as you move along this path, including the contents of this book.”

Excerpt 2: “Many traditional religionists might argue that having ‘faith’ means we may not question established religious doctrine, for the sheer act of doubting what we have been taught to believe is to be considered blasphemous behavior. As this quotation from Fr. Anthony DeMello illustrates, however, that is really not what faith is all about:

An openness to the truth, no matter what the consequences, no matter where it leads you and when you don’t even know where it’s going to lead you. That’s faith. Not belief, but faith. Your beliefs give you a lot of security, but faith is insecurity. You don’t know. You’re ready to follow and you’re open, you’re wide open! You’re ready to listen.114

This doesn’t mean that you become gullible and immediately accept new information to replace the old, but instead you learn to question everything – new and old – with an open mind.”
114 Anthony DeMello, Awareness, (New York, NY: Image Books/Doubleday, 1992)p. 18]

Excerpt 3: “In addition to building your own spiritual philosophy, it is equally important for you to develop a spiritual practice as well. To clarify, practice in this sense means more than just participation in conventional religious services, it means making spiritual growth work an integral part of your daily routine.”

Excerpt 4: “Like many people in the West, for years I equated meditation with the visual image of monks in saffron robes sitting rigid with their legs crossed in the classic Lotus position. While this image is reality in some cultures, as this passage from Stuart Wilde attests, effective meditative practice does not require that one assume an uncomfortable physical posture, or behave in some prescribed, ritualistic way:

Meditation need not be complicated. Some will tell you that nothing less than sitting cross-legged in the lotus position, ohm’ing yer ohms in the temple, will do. In fact, any meditation which is painful or uncomfortable to perform is distracting in my view. Okay, so you’ve got your robes on and you can stick your toe in your ear, big deal. . . . Excuse me! What’s it for? . . . Any ol’ meditation style is just fine; it doesn’t have to be a great performance unless you want it that way. 117

[117 Stuart Wilde, Infinite Self, (Carlsbad, California: Hay House, Inc., 1996) p. 100]

Excerpt 5: “Feelings of spiritual pride are very dangerous because they only serve to reinforce the feeling of separateness between others and yourself. As we learned in Chapter 6: Oneness, whenever you judge another you are seeing that person as you are rather than how they are. Therefore, always make your best effort to remember that your way is not the way, and as such, you have no right to feel spiritually superior to anyone. Additionally, remind yourself that what they have chosen to accept as their inner ‘truth’ is exactly what they need at this point in their spiritual evolution.”