Which of these 3 obstacles to your spiritual growth are you facing?

A tree is called to grow; we are called to spiritual growth. But there are barriers to overcome.

Spiritual growth is natural. It has its own seasons.

When a tree is young, its focus is different from when mature. The soul is the same — a young soul has different priorities to the mature soul.

When a soul reaches a point of maturity, it naturally longs for truth. This can be a gentle curiosity or a strong urgent calling. It becomes more and more difficult to ignore this call to spiritual growth.

Here are three common obstacles to spiritual growth, together with mindfulness teachings to help overcome these obstacles.

  • #1 “Life is in the way of my spiritual growth.”
  • #2 “My mind is too busy and distracted mind.”
  • #3 “How do I know what is true?”

#1 “Life is in the way of my spiritual growth.”

  • Do you sometimes feel you can’t find the time to focus on your spiritual path?
  • Do the demands of life get in the way?
  • So busy working, looking after relationships and family, that you just can’t put attention on your spiritual growth.

Many of my Wisdom Well Way students experience this challenge.

Follow love and interest rather than discipline.

Firstly, instead of thinking you need to be more disciplined, to schedule in time for your spirituality, your meditation and mindfulness – rather place your focus on what is most important to you right now.

Instead of feeling frustrated by having to work and care for your life instead of being able to focus on your spiritual growth, ask your heart, “What is most important right now?”

Then use your spirituality to support you with what is most important.

The Wisdom Well Meditation and Mindfulness method helps you to make your spiritual growth a part of your daily life.

We place attention on what we love. We are interested in what calls to us.

Honouring this is important. If you love your spirituality, your attention will naturally go on to spirituality.

But what is real spirituality? It’s not dogma or theory.

The gift spiritual growth is the discovery of your true self.

Place attention on you.

Use self-enquiry meditation and mindfulness to discern the difference between the false limited separate self, your false eyes and the false “I” and the true self, your true eyes and true “I”.

Spiritual growth is meant to prepare your mind and soul for self-realization.

Break down the wall between spiritual and material.

Secondly, it is important not to divide spirituality from physicality. They are not separate.

The mind is designed to divide. It is the wall builder.

MIND: “How do we find peace, love and happiness from our spiritual growth?”

WISDOM: “Thoughts and beliefs make it seem that you are divided from your peace, love and happiness. Then you seek these, believing that spiritual growth will help you attain them.

But the very seeking reveals that your mind has you convinced that the wall is real.
Meanwhile, the truth is you are the peace, love and happiness that you are seeking.”

We need to break down the wall between what the mind labels spiritual and material.

From the perspective of the true self, there is no difference between spiritual and material. From the perspective of the true self, there is no material vs spiritual.

The songs of life rise and fall in the true self as pure awareness. They are made of awareness. The songs are temporary, but you are not; you are unchanging pure, open awareness.

When this is truly seen, and this seeing enlightens the mind, the walls dissolve become transparent.

Like the classical Zen saying, “Before enlightenment carry water, chop wood. After enlightenment, carry water, chop wood.”

Except that after enlightenment, wood and water are seen for what they truly are, songs of life arising in and of the self, made of awareness.

Life is spiritual growth.

Lastly, life is not in the way of our spiritual growth; life is our spiritual growth. With all of its grime and grit.

Use your life to further your spiritual growth.

Every moment, every frustration is an opportunity to bring enlightenment to your body and mind.

Lovingly notice what is causing suffering in your emotions and thoughts. Lovingly seek the truth, not as a lofty concept but as a living medicine for your life.

Everything seeks enlightenment.
Every painful thought, every false perspective.
They call for the truth that sets us free.

Life is spiritual growth

#2 “My mind is too busy and distracted.”

We can’t force the mind to get rid of busy thoughts. 

But the good news is you don’t have to still a busy mind for your spiritual growth, even for meditation! 

Rather understand the mind and realize you are not in your mind; your mind is in you.

It’s when we identify with the mind that suffering occurs.

If you see your mind as sacred software, like an app designed to serve in your expression of life, then you will put your mind in its place as a good servant.

The mind makes a terrible master but a beautiful sacred servant.

When we realize the mind is similar to words on a screen, we become more discerning. We question the mind. We put it in the right place.

Then we can call attention back from its addiction to thoughts, to rest attention in its source, pure awareness.

  • Are you aware of your thoughts? – Yes!

Thoughts are not aware.

Only you are aware. This is you as the true self, as non-dual (undivided) awareness.

Become interested in you as awareness. Let attention rest in you. Then whether your mind is busy or still is no longer a problem. You are tuned in to the true self.

The true self is the only source of love, peace and happiness.

The prize of spiritual growth is to realize you are already and always what you seek.

You are awareness

#3 “How do I know what is true?”

Thoughts are only one source of information. Get a second opinion from your intuitive knowing.

Thoughts are recycled conditioned past beliefs. Your intuition can access true insight, groundbreaking understanding and new seeing. Intuition is hardwired into the body.

The body can sense truth.

Truth has the effect of somatically creating a felt sense of open relaxation in the mind, heart and gut. What is not true has the effect of contracting the body, of stressing it.

Use this energetic, intuitive opening and closing as a way to discern what thoughts you are focused on.

If you want to be free of their suffering, question thoughts that cause heaviness or contraction.

Thoughts that cause an opening should be welcomed and explored.

Use your intellect to discern.

The mind is different to the intellect.

The mind is the sheep, the intellect is the shepherd.

Activate your intellect. Intellect is the questioning function of the mind. It can help you to question your thoughts.

Many people have a strong mind but weak intellect. The intellect is like a muscle that can be trained to become strong.

Being interested, curious and questioning will help activate and strengthen your intellect. Don’t believe, rather seek to know.

If somebody says to you, “Sit down, there is a chair behind you.” Would you believe them, or would you prefer to check for yourself?

Beliefs can be dangerous; they breed dogma, even war. Enlightenment in its true form has nothing to do with believing anything.

Enlightenment is spiritual growth validated by our direct, most immediate experience. That which is known and knowable.

Don’t trust teachings that reinforce that you are separate or anything less than whole.

Any teaching that reinforces that you are separate or lacking as a being is not designed to bring true spiritual growth.

Teachings that encourage you to realize yourself as non-dual, whole and complete, as the very source of your happiness, love and peace, are designed to support your spiritual growth.

Find a teacher who resonates with you, lives a life of integrity, and walks their talk.

Your highest teacher, the Satguru, your inner teacher.

Find a spiritual growth teacher that resonates with you speaks to your heart and intellect. Also, look to see how they live.

If you wanted to find a teacher on financial investments – would you trust a teacher who was in debt? 

Find teachers that are living the reality of what they teach.

They don’t have to be perfect, there’s still a personality and human life, but integrity, honesty, love and compassion are key.

This website, these courses, in this blog are filled with articles to support your spiritual growth — presented with love.

 

Find your inner teacher

Summary

Consider these 3 common obstacles to your spiritual growth.

  • #1 “Life is in the way of my spiritual growth.”
  • #2 “My mind is too busy and distracted mind.”
  • #3 “How do I know what is true?”

See life as your spiritual growth path. See the mind as sacred software that need not interfere with your spiritual work. Use your intellect, your intuition and your discernment to seek and find your inner teacher who can help you find truth.

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